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George Pearl Oversized Drawings, Artwork and Files

Identifier: SWA-Pearl

Scope and Content

The George Clayton Pearl Oversized Drawings, Artwork and Files contain project related drawings, plans and records. The project files contain work created while Pearl worked for SMPC Architects in Albuquerque, NM and also work created after Pearl retired in 1989. The collection also contains oversized photographs, including family portraits and art photography, personal correspondence, degrees and awards, along with drawings and sketchbooks created throughout George Pearl’s career and life.

Some significant projects represented in the collection include: De Anza Motel Renovation, Albuquerque, NM (c. 1958), Laguna Pueblo Community Building, Laguna Pueblo, NM (c. 1960), Zimmerman Library, University of New Mexico Campus, Albuquerque, New Mexico (c. 1969), Albuquerque High School Renovation, Albuquerque, NM (c. 1996) and the renovation of the old Montezuma Hotel in Las Vegas, New Mexico to create the United World College (c. 1980).

Series I: Oversized Project and Job Files: These drawers contain oversized project files from projects created and/or proposed over George Pearl’s lifetime. The files contain drawings, plans, sketches, elevations and diagrams from miscellaneous projects, SMPC related works and projects completed while Pearl was an architecture student at the University of Texas at Austin.

Series II: Oversized Personal and Correspondence Files: These drawers contain personal files and correspondence collected throughout Pearl’s life. The files include oversized awards, diplomas and certificates.

Series III: Oversized Photo Collection: These drawers contain oversized photographs taken and collected by Pearl throughout his life. Included are Lee Marmon collected prints.

Series IV: Oversized Art Collection: These drawers contain oversized pencil and ink drawings, along with paintings and sketchbooks.


  • 1900-2002


Language of Materials

English Spanish

Access Restrictions

The collection is open for research.

Copy Restrictions

Limited duplication of CSWR material is allowed for research purposes. User is responsible for compliance with all copyright, privacy, and libel laws. Permission is required for publication or distribution.

Biographical Information

George Clayton Pearl was born in central Texas in 1923. He lived on his parent’s farm until moving to Austin, Texas in 1940 to study architecture at the University of Texas. His schooling was interrupted by WWII, where he served until he was released after an injury. He then returned to the University of Texas to finish his bachelors in Architecture. Upon graduation, Pearl joined the architecture firm of Ferguson, Stevens and Associates (later known as SMPC Architects) in Albuquerque where he worked until his retirement in 1989. After retirement, Pearl continued to work on numerous preservation and new building projects. Pearl was also a prolific painter, sketcher and photographer, using his skill with camera and pen to record many of New Mexico’s historic buildings.

George Clayton Pearl was one of Albuquerque’s most prolific architects. Pearl was responsible for new building design in New Mexico and beyond, pulling from regional influences and motifs throughout his career. While working for SMPC Architects, Pearl became the chief designer, known for his artistic skill. During this time, Pearl worked on several major projects in Albuquerque, including the Public Library, Presbyterian Hospital and multiple buildings on the University of New Mexico campus, including the renovation of John Gaw Meem’s Zimmerman Library. George Pearl was also a proponent of preservation and revitalization, working tirelessly to place historic buildings on the National and New Mexico State registers.

George Pearl’s career as an architect spanned more than 50 years. During his career and after, he received countless honors and awards. He also worked closely with the School of Architecture and Planning at the University of New Mexico, giving his guidance and knowledge to the staff and students. In honor of Pearl and the many gifts he left the state of New Mexico, the School of Architecture and Planning named the new architecture building after him. George Pearl Hall, designed by Antoine Predock, will be completed in 2007.

George Pearl died in Albuquerque in August of 2003.


14 drawers (3.5 lin. ft.)


This collection contains George Clayton Pearl’s oversized drawings and artwork along with various personal and business records. The business files contain project information from his professional projects with SMPC Architects along with projects he undertook on his own. These projects deal mainly with historic preservation issues in New Mexico along with new projects he took on after retirement from SMPC Architects. Also included are personal correspondence materials, sketch books, paintings, drawings and photographs.


Arranged in 4 series:

Oversized Project and Job Files

Oversized Personal and Correspondence Files

Oversized Photo Collection

Oversized Art Collection

Related Archival Material

George Pearl Papers, Center for Southwest Research. University of New Mexico. Stevens, Mallory, Pearl, & Campbell Drawings (SMPC), Center for Southwest Research. University of New Mexico. Stevens, Mallory, Pearl, & Campbell Job Files (unprocessed collection), Center for Southwest Research. University of New Mexico. Oral History Interviews of the Architectural Heritage of New Mexico Oral History Project, Center for Southwest Research. University Libraries. University of New Mexico. Value-engineered construction documents : The University of New Mexico, School of Architecture and Planning, Fine Arts & Design Library / design architect, Antoine Predock ; executive architect, Jon Anderson. LD3781 N538 G46 2005
Finding Aid of the George Pearl Oversized Drawings, Artwork and Files, 1900-2002
Julie McGilvray
© 2007
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Script of description
Language of description note
Finding aid is in English
Funding for processing provided by Center for Regional Studies, University of New Mexico, Dr. Tobiáas Durán, Director

Revision Statements

  • Monday, 20210524: Attribute normal is missing or blank.

Repository Details

Part of the UNM Center for Southwest Research & Special Collections Repository

University of New Mexico Center for Southwest Research & Special Collections
University Libraries, MSC05 3020
1 University of New Mexico
Albuquerque NM 87131