Texas Archival Resources Online

TABLE OF CONTENTS


Descriptive Summary

Biographical Sketch

Scope and Contents Note

Index Terms

Administrative Information

Publications

Description of Series

Mexican Masks

Photographic material

Masks

The Benson Latin American Collection

Donald Cordry Mexican Masks Collection, 1931-1978



Descriptive Summary

Creator Cordry, Donald Bush
Title Donald Cordry Mexican Masks Collection
Dates: 1931-1978
Abstract Manuscript, galley proofs, photographs, and slides relating to the publication of Cordry's book, Mexican Masks. Also includes 67 masks from Cordry's personal collection.
OCLC Record No. 33352640
Extent 3 boxes of manuscript and galley proofs; 88 photographic prints; 201 slides; 67 masks.
Language English.
Repository Nettie Lee Benson Latin American Collection, University of Texas Libraries, The University of Texas at Austin

Biographical Sketch

Artist; self-taught Mesoamerican scholar and ethnographer of the arts and crafts of Indian Mexico. Born 1907 in Detroit, Michigan; died August 30, 1978 in Cuernavaca, Mexico. Cordry studied at the Minneapolis Institute of Art, and later earned a reputation as an expert on puppets, which he both created and collected. He began collecting artifacts and information documenting Mexican Indian arts and crafts in 1931, on a trip to Mexico. He formed professional associations with the Heye Foundation (now the Museum of the American Indian), which sponsored further trips, and with the Southwest Museum in Los Angeles, California. In 1941 Cordry traveled to Oaxaca, Mexico, and in 1942 founded a crafts workshop there to finance his expeditions to collect and record ethnographic data. He later relocated to Mixcoac, in Mexico City, and Cuernavaca, but kept his home in Mexico and pursued the documentation of its arts and crafts until his death. Publications include: Mexican Indian Costumes (1968) and Mexican Masks (c1980).

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Scope and Contents Note

Manuscript, galley proofs, photographs, and slides relating to the publication of Cordry's book, Mexican Masks, and 67 masks from Cordry's personal collection, the result of his work to preserve and record Mexican masks and their significance. The original, edited manuscript comprises 455 typed pages and is accompanied by galley proofs. Photographic material, made up of 88 black and white photographs dating from 1931 to 1977, 201 color slides, and two negatives, depicts ceremonial Mexican folk masks, mask makers, and people wearing the masks. Most photographs are annotated. Assorted materials consist of a 1945 broadside promoting the Feria Regional de Corpus in Papantla, Veracruz, and a flat mask, “Tzotzil Zinacantan.”

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Index Terms

Subjects
Indians of Mexico--Masks.
Masks--Mexico.

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Administrative Information

Preferred Citation

Donald Cordry Mexican Masks Collection, 1931-1978, Nettie Lee Benson Latin American Collection, The University of Texas at Austin

Acquisitions Information

The Donald Cordry Collection Mexican Masks Collection was donated to the Institute of Latin American Studies and the Nettie Lee Benson Latin American Collection in 1982 by Dorothy Mann Cordry.

Processing Information

The collection was described by the Benson's Mexican Archives Project in July 1994.

Prepared by the Mexican Archives Project, November 1994.

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Publications

Cordry, Donald Bush.Mexican masks.
Austin :
University of Texas Press,
1980.

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Container List

 

Manuscript and galley proofs of Mexican Masks

box
1 Manuscript of Mexican Masks, pp. 1-362
box
2 Manuscript of Mexican Masks, pp. 363-455
box
3 Galley proofs of Mexican Masks

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Photographic material

box
4 Photographs
(62 black & white prints)
box
5 Photographs
(26 mounted prints)
box
6 Slides (201) and negatives (2)

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Masks

Originally donated to the University of Texas Institute of Latin American Studies, 66 of the masks in the collection were transferred to UT's Texas Memorial Museum, then loaned to the Houston Museum of Natural Science, and finally transferred to the Benson Collection in 2013. The masks are listed below following the TMM/HMNS inventory system.
Individual masks are accessible to the public by request in the Benson Collection rare books and manuscripts reading room.
box folder
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box
6 Mask “Tzotzil Zinacantan”
Fig. 304, “Feria Regional de Corpus”
For photo of Donald Cordry, see unnumbered slide, “foto by Doris Hayden, 1963” in plastic sheet containing only four slides (8-2, #30-4, #29-5, and DC)

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