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Vizcaya Museum and Gardens


  • Property Wall Construction, 1/1/1920. Construction Photograph. Vizcaya Museum and Gardens Archives.

Vizcaya Museum and Gardens Archives is home to almost 100 photograph, manuscript and architectural drawing and blueprint collections documenting the life of James Deering and the design and construction of the Vizcaya Estate, including the Main House, gardens, Village and south property before it was sold. The collections provide insight into the challenges associated with building an Italianate villa with all the modern conveniences of the early 20th century in a subtropical climate during the Gilded Age and World War I.

In our manuscript collections, correspondents include James Deering, Paul Chalfin, F. Burrall Hoffman, Diego Suarez, Phineas Paist, William Jennings Bryan, Elsie de Wolfe, Carl Fisher, Ralph Munroe and John Singer Sargent. Photograph collections include images by Mattie Edwards Hewitt, Alice Wood, F. Geisler, Richard Trowbridge, and Richard B. Hoit. Four thousand architectural drawings and blueprints cover every aspect of Vizcaya from elevations of the Main House to soap dishes and everything in between, most of which are available electronically to on-site researchers.

Due to Capital Projects improvements, the Vizcaya Museum and Gardens Archive is currently unavailable. The museum is upgrading environmental controls as part of our preservation work. If you have a research request that requires access to the archives, please submit your request online and you will be notified once the Archives become available.