Stock sheets, stock books, ledgers, and
assorted papers document the objects, primarily decorative arts pieces, bought and sold by
the New York art dealer, French & Company, between 1909 and 1968.
American art dealership based in New York City, French & Company bought and sold
decorative arts, as well paintings and sculpture. Mitchell Samuels founded the firm in New
York in 1907. Under Mitchell Samuels'directorship French & Company clients included many
wealthy American collectors eager for decorative art objects and paintings of European
provenance. Among their clients were, J. Paul Getty and William Randolph Hearst. During this
period the firm also served as agents and decorators for the Huntingtons, Fricks, Mellons
and Astors, among others. Mitchell's son Spencer took over the firm in the 1950s. After his
father's death, Spencer sold the firm to City Investing in 1959. In 1968 City Investing sold
the firm to Martin Zimet. Much of the French & Company remaining stock of decorative
arts objects was sold at auction in 1968. The firm continued under the same name after the
1950s, but with a changing inventory and clientele.
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