Monday, April 24, 2023

Lettering: Harvey Hopkins Dunn, Designer and Lettering Artist


Harvey Hopkins Dunn was born on July 9, 1879, in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, according to his World War I and II draft cards. His parents were Thomas J. Dunn and Mary Lare. Dunn should not be confused with illustrator, Harvey Thomas Dunn (1884–1952). 

In the 1880 United States Census, Duun was the youngest of four siblings. His family were residents of Philadelphia at 268 Fifteenth Street. His father was a cigar manufacturer. 


Who’s Who in the East, Volume 1 (1942) said Dunn was a student at Central Manual Training High School, Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Arts, Pennsylvania School of Industrial Art, and the University of Pennsylvania where he was in the class of 1902 but did not graduate. He also attended, in 1902, Harvard Summer School where he studied the theory of design with Denman Ross. 


1899, University of Pennsylvania


1900, University of Pennsylvania

The 1900 census said Dunn’s mother, a widow, was the head of the household that had nine people. Their Philadelphia address was 3142 Morris Street. Dunn’s occupation was artist. 


Dunn spent some time in New York City. He married Grace O’Donnell in Manhattan on June 1, 1907. 



According to the 1910 census, Dunn, his wife, son and sister-in-law lived in Philadelphia at 44 Westview Street. Dunn was an artist who illustrated books and, at the time, unemployed. 


The Graphics Arts, April 1915 reviewed Dunn’s work. 








Dunn’s design was included in the feature about labels in The Printing Art, September 1915.


Samples of Dunn’s work appeared in The Inland Printer, January 1916. 



Dunn’s work was featured in the April 1917 issue of The Printing Art

















Below are samples of Dunn’s designs from 1917 and 1918. 

The Printing Art, October 1917

The Printing Art, November 1917

The Printing Art, January 1918

The American Printer, April 5, 1918

The American Printer, June 20, 1918

On September 12, 1918, Dunn signed his World War I draft card. He was a self-employed artist in Philadelphia. Dunn was described as medium build and height, with blue eyes and light brown hair. 


Dunn had the same address in the 1920 census. He was a self-employed artist and designer. 


Dunn was listed in the General Alumni Catalogue of the University of Pennsylvania for 1917 and 1922

Below are samples of Dunn’s designs and a profile from 1919 to 1924. 

The Printing Art, July 1919

The Printing Art, October 1920

The Printing Art, November 1920

Annual of Advertising Art in the United States 1921

The American Printer, February 20, 1921

The Printing Art, February 1921

The American Printer, August 5, 1924

Dunn, Harvey Hopkins, 33 West 42nd, Lon 8536. Nat’l Adv. Ill., Allegorical, Borders, Decoration, Design, Figure, Heads, Historical Subjects, Landscapes, Layout, Lettering, Ornamentation, Poster, Portrait, Line Drawings, Pen and Ink, Wood Cut Rendering.



Dunn and his wife were counted in the 1930 census. They continued to reside at 44 Westview Street in Philadelphia. Dunn was self-employed as an artist and designer. His home was valued at $5,000. 


Dunn’s wife passed away in 1933. 

Sometime after 1935, Dunn moved to Burlington, New Jersey at 45 Wood Street, according to the 1940 census. 


On April 26, 1942, Dunn signed his World War II draft card. His home address was 312 Wood Street in Burlington. Apparently he had a studio at 1309 Locust Street in Philadelphia. 


Dunn passed away on May 10, 1947, in Burlington, New Jersey. A death notice appeared in the Philadelphia Inquirer, May 14, 1947. 
Dunn.—At Burlington, N.J., May 10, 1947. Harvey H. Dunn, formerly of Germantown, Pa. Funeral service art the Slack Funeral Home, Burlington, N.J., Tuesday, 2 P.M.


Further Reading and Viewing
Internet Archive, here and here
Luc Devroye, Harvey Hopkins Dunn


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