2003

B2 -- America


American Biographical Archive (ABA I). New York; München [et al.]: Saur. ISBN 3-598-30950-3 (diazo fiches): EUR 9,800 [99-B09-184]

American Biographical Archive. Ser. 2 (ABA II). Ed. Laureen Baillie. New York; München [et al.]: Saur. ISBN 3-598-33520-2 (diazo fiches): EUR 9,800 [99-B09-185]

American Biographical Index = Amerikanischer biographischer Index (ABI II). Comp. Laureen Baillie. 2d cumulated and expanded ed. 10 vols. München: Saur, 1998. xxiv, 4,200 p. 30 cm. ISBN 3-598-33548-2 (set): EUR 2,058 [99-B09-186]

The ABI I evaluates 502 source works and approximately 488,000 individuals. Most of the ABA II sources appeared between 1890 and 1950, and the few later titles are arbitrarily selected and not representative. Many of them are of the “Who’s Who” type and cover the years from 1957 to 1967. None of the high-quality collective biographies published in the last three decades in the USA are considered, and in terms of currency, the ABA is of less value than the American National Biography (New York; Oxford, 1999) and the Dictionary of American Biography, the basic edition of which appeared over 70 years ago (a cumulation of the original and supplements is now available as the Dictionary of American Biography on CD-ROM: New York, 1997). [sh/mjc]

Deutsche Künstler in Amerika: 1813–1913 [German Artists in America, 1813–1913]. Also includes: Amerikanische Künstler in Deutschland [American Artists in Germany]. Katharina Bott. Weimar: Verlag und Datenbank für Geisteswissenschaften, 1996. 260, 189 p. 30 cm. ISBN 3-932124-03-0: EUR 50.20 [99-B09-202]

Deutsche Künstler in Amerika [German Artists in America]. Also includes: Amerikanische Künstler in Deutschland [American Artists in Germany]. Katharina Bott. Weimar: Verlag und Datenbank für Geisteswissenschaften, 1996. 1 CD-ROM. ISBN 3-932124-44-8: EUR 50.20 [99-B09-203]

German Immigrant Artists in America: A Biographical Dictionary. Peter C. Merrill. Lanham, MD; London: Scarecrow Press, 1997. vii, 340 p. 22 cm. ISBN 3-8108-3266-6: $55 [99-B09-204]

The authors of these two works learned of each other’s projects and have exchanged material, so the contents overlap extensively. Bott based her documentation on an exhibit of the Deutsches Historisches Museum in 1996, which includes artists from German-speaking countries who emigrated to the USA and were active there between 1813 and 1913. The extremely brief citations to secondary sources are given in numerous footnotes. It would have been preferable to have a separate listing of the works with full bibliographic data. All artists in Bott are also included in Merrill, whose coverage extends from the 18th century to the present. Bott includes mostly painters and sculptors, although Merrill lists painters, graphic artists, sculptors, and artists in other media, such as glass painting.

Both works are equally important for German and American libraries, especially for the large number of lesser-known or forgotten artists. It would be desirable for the authors to combine their data and create a CD-ROM together. [sh/mjc]


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