Skip to main content

Eugene Colby collection

 Collection — Multiple Containers
Identifier: RITArt-0019

Scope and Contents

The Eugene Colby collection contains landscapes: 3 etchings, 2 oil on canvas paintings, 11 charcoal drawings, and 2 pencil drawings. The collection also contains a rudimentary student lap desk made by Colby.


  1. Old Apple Tree (1896)
  2. Birches (1929)

Charcoal drawings:

  1. Country Side Scene
  2. Hemlock Channel
  3. Hillside
  4. Lake Scene
  5. New Empress Isle
  6. Near Hemlock Channel
  7. Near L.S. 47
  8. Near Mt. Washington Isle
  9. Shawanaga River, Georgian Bay [1]
  10. Shawanaga River, Georgian Bay [2]
  11. Untitled [sunset on water]

Pencil drawings:

  1. Buffalo, Park
  2. On the dock at Buffalo, NY, August 15, 1883


  • Creation: circa 1883-1929

Conditions Governing Access

This collection is open to researchers.

Biographical / Historical

Eugene C. Colby (1846-1930) was the first principal of the Mechanics Institute and first director of its art school. He taught mechanical drawing the first semester the school operated (1885). Colby also wrote an early history of the school, tracing its development from 1885-1925. Although his professional field was mechanical drawing, he was recognized as an accomplished landscape painter. The RIT Art Collection holds several of Colby's landscape etchings, paintings, and drawings.


2.5 Linear Feet (1 Oversize lid box, 1 Framed painting, 1 Desk, 1 flat box containing scrapbook)




The Eugene Colby collection contains drawings, etchings, oil paintings, and a student desk made by Colby.


Collection materials are arranged by size.

Physical Location

C.S. South, Shelf 554
RIT Art Collection


  • Eugene Colby at Art on Campus, Rochester Institute of Technology
  • Additional description and images of artist work in View It! The Art and Architecture of RIT. By David Pankow, Becky Simmons, Houghton Wetherald. Rochester, NY: Cary Graphic Arts Press, 2004.


Artwork varies in size: 5 x 7 to 31 x 23 inches.

Processing Information

Finding aid created by Amy Vilz in August 2011.

Eugene Colby collection
RIT Art Collection
Amy Vilz
26 August 2011
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Script of description
Code for undetermined script
Language of description note

Revision Statements

  • 1/10/2023: added E.C. Colby scrapbook from legacy files to the collection

Repository Details

Part of the RIT Archives Repository

Rochester NY 14623 USA