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Sumner Mcknight Crosby


Sumner Mcknight Crosby, American educator. Recipient Guggenheim F.; festschrift in his honor, 1976; Decorated chevalier Chevalier de la Legion d’Honneur’Honor; officier Ordre des Arts et Lettres.


Crosby, Sumner Mcknight was born on July 29, 1909 in Minneapolis. Son of Franklin Muzzy and Harriet (McKnight) Crosby.


Student, Blake School, Hopkins, Minn. Student, Ecole des Chartes, Paris, France, 1934-1935.


Instructor Yale, 1936-1940, assistant professor of history of art, 1940-1943, 1945-1947, associate professor, 1947-1952, professor, 1952-1978, professor emeritus, 1978-1982, department chairman history art, 1947-1953, 62-65. Excavated in Abbey Church St. Denis, north of Paris, summers 1938, 39, 46, 47, 48, 67, 68, 69, 71. Curator Art Gallery, 1946-1978.

Fellow Berkeley College, Yale, 1939-1982. Chairman Carolyn Foundation. Director The Crosby Company Visiting committee fine arts Harvard, 1959-1965.

Member visiting committee department art and archaeology Princeton, 1962-1968. Director International Center Medieval Art, 1956-1982, president, 1965-1968. Member international committee history art, 1950-1975.


  • Author: Abbey of St. Denis I, 1942, L’Abbaye Royale de Saint-Denis, 1952, The Apostle Bas-Relief at Saint-Denis, 1972. Member of the board, Speculum, 1946-1954. Editor: Art Through the Ages, 1959, Religious Art in France Thirteenth Century, Corpus Vitrearum Medii Aevi.

    Member editorial board: Art Bulletin Trustee American Federation Arts, 1940-1945, 49-50. Member College Art Association, director, 1939-1945 and 1947-1952, president, 1940-1944. Executive secretary American Council of Learned Socs.

    Committee on Preservation of Cultural Materials in War Areas, 1943-1944. Special adviser American Common for the Protection and Salvage of Artistic and Historic Monuments in War Areas, 1944-1946. Special advisory on Restitution of Cultural Materials Department State, 1945.


Member Medieval Academy American, Archaeol. Institute American (trustee 1966-1969), Societe d’Archeologie Francaise, Society National des Antiquaires de France (honorary), American Philosophical Society, American Academy Arts and Sciences, Alpha Delta Phi. Clubs: Century Association (New York City), Yale (New York City).


Married Sarah Rathbone Townsend, October 19, 1935. Children: Sumner McKnight, William F., Frederick T., Gerrit L. Student, Blake School.

Franklin Muzzy Crosby

Harriet (McKnight) Crosby

Sarah Rathbone Townsend

Sumner McKnight Crosby

William F. Crosby

Frederick T. Crosby

Gerrit L. Student Crosby

Blake Sch Crosby