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Janet Turner Collection

Identifier: A-0032

Scope and Contents

The collection consists of newspaper clippings and some typescripts of newspaper clippings about Miss Turner. Also included are a biographical sketch of Janet Turner, programs for Janet Turner Exhibits at SFA, "This Week at SFA" newsletters mentioning Janet Turner's prints, and magazine articles illustrated by Janet Turner. The collection contains the book jacket designed by Janet Turner for 'The Yazoo River' and the publishers' glossy prints of illustrations by Janet Turner for 'The Yazoo River'. The collection includes one group of original black and white drawings by Janet Turner to illustrate the book, 'The Yazoo River', by Frank Smith in 1954. Also included is a second group of prints by Janet Turner of birds of Eastern Texas and Western Louisiana, made while she was studying under the Guggenheim Fellowship. The second group also contains a print of Janet Turner's "Construction: Powerhouse" of a scene during the construction of the powerhouse on the SFA campus.


  • Creation: 1950-1989

Language of Materials

The collection is in English.

Conditions Governing Access

Open for research.

Biographical or Historical Information

Miss Janet E. Turner was born in Kansas City, Missouri in 1914, the daughter of James Ernest and Hortense (Taylor) Turner. The collection mentions Janet Turner's sister, Mrs. Milton (Barbara) Edmonson, of Kansas City; and brother, John M. Turner, who became a lieutenant colonel of the U. S. Air Force. John M. Turner and his wife and children were stationed in Tokyo, Japan in the 1950's and in Honolulu, Hawaii in the 1960's. Miss Turner completed a Bachelor of Arts degree with distinction from Stanford University in 1936. She studied art at Kansas City Art Institute from 1936 to 1941. Miss Turner taught at the Girls Collegiate School in Claremont, California during 1942 through 1947.

After two years of study, Miss Turner received a Master of Fine Arts degree from Claremont College in 1947. Miss Turner moved to Nacogdoches in 1947 and served as an assistant professor of art at Stephen F. Austin State University from 1947 to 1956. During this time, she was an active member of the Nacogdoches branch of the American Association of University Women. In 1956, she moved to New York where she studied at Columbia University for her doctorate in education, which she took in 1960. Miss Turner then became an assistant professor at Chico State College in Chico, California. She was promoted to an associate professor in 1963 and to a full professor in 1968. Miss Turner was a co-recipient of the Outstanding Professor award of California State Universities and Colleges in 1975 and she retired in 1980 with the title of professor emeritus. Miss Turner continues to reside in Chico, California.

Miss Turner achieved success as an artist as well as a professor. She be came a leader in the field of block prints and serigraph design by the early 1950's. Primarily a print maker, Miss Turner also worked with other media, and her paintings, water colors, and prints have been shown in exhibitions throughout the United States. Subjects of Miss Turner's art include birds (especially water fowl), other animals, and East Texas scenes. Miss Turner made several watercolors of Nacogdoches buildings and people including "Peachtree Politics" of the senior citizens who sat on benches under a peach tree on the old court house lawn.

In 1954, she drew black and white illustrations for THE YAZOO RIVER by Frank Smith, which is an account of the people and places within the delta formed by that body of water including a recounting of their legends, the customs, and the historical anecdotes Yazoo countrymen recall on their porches summer evenings. In 1952, Miss Turner was awarded a research grant from the J. S. Guggenheim Foundation to experiment in relief painting and serigraph techniques. In 1956, a painting won the Tupperware Art Foundation award for the Central States Area. Her paintings or prints have won more than one hundred additional awards. Miss Turner's art has been displayed in about 165 one-man shows in the United States in approximately 40 states. Overseas one-man shows of her work have been in 22 cities in Israel and Japan. Seventy of her prints were purchased by the United States Information Service for embassies. These circuits have been shown in more than eighty-five cities in forty countries. Two hundred prints or paintings are in over eighty college or museum collections including the Smithsonian Institute, the Victoria and Albert Museum in London, the Dallas Museum of Fine Arts, and the Biblioteque Nationale in Paris.

As an educator, Miss Turner joined the Texas State Teachers Association, the National Art Educators Association, the College Art Association, the American Association of University Women, Delta Kappa Gamma, Pi Lambda Theta, and Delta Kappa Pi. In association with her art work, she joined many art societies and clubs as well as the National Audubon Society and the Texas Ornithological Society. Miss Turner is listed in numerous biographies including WHO'S WHO IN AMERICA, since 1952; WHO'S WHO IN AMERICAN ART, since 1952; ROYAL BLUE BOOK OF DISTINGUISHED PERSONAGES, London, since 1968; and the DICTIONARY OF INTERNATIONAL BIOGRAPHY, London, since 1969. Janet Turner died on June 28, 1988.

("TURNER, JANET ELIZABETH." The Handbook of Texas Online.  [Accessed 6/28/2004].)


1.00 Cubic Feet


Artist and faculty member at SFASU. Collection includes newspaper clippings, programs of exhibits, original drawings illustrating The Yazoo River, prints of birds of Eastern Texas and Western Louisiana, magazine articles illustrated by Turner, and biographical information.


This collection is housed in one clamshell box and one oversize bundle. There are 201 items described in 26 folders in the box and 15 items in the bundle. The bulk of this collection is organized at the folder level.

Guide to the Janet Turner Collection
Language of description
Script of description

Repository Details

Part of the East Texas Research Center Repository