Posthumous Portrait of Margaret Bridwell Bowdle

Posthumous Portrait of Margaret Bridwell Bowdle
Janet Raser Faunce
Oil on canvas, 1980

SMU graduate Margaret Thora Bridwell Bowdle (1927–1976) and her father, Texas rancher and businessman J. S. Bridwell, presented to Southern Methodist University funds to build the theological library building which would be named for them in 1951. The Bridwells’ subsequent involvement in the life and work of the library added significantly to the collection, funding the acquisition of the DeBellis Collection of Fifteenth-Century Printing in 1962, as well as to the facility, greatly enlarged as a benefit of their support in 1973. Prior to his death in 1966 Mr. Bridwell established a foundation that continues to provide significant funding to Bridwell Library as well as to other church, educational, and charitable institutions.

In 1971 Margaret Bridwell Bowdle established a collection of incunabula at Bridwell Library. The collection serves as a complement to the Bridwell-DeBellis Collection representing editions from forty-eight printers working in Germany and France.

The portraitist Janet Raser Faunce, (1917–1999) was born in New Jersey, but grew up in Massachusetts. Early in her career she was a graphic artist, textile designer, decorative artist, and painter. She began painting portraits in 1949 with a studio in New York, before moving to Dallas in 1951 to work exclusively as a portrait painter. Although her portraits included a number of prominent business people, she was best known for her portraits of children.

Margaret Bridwell Bowdle.jpg
North Stairs
Posthumous Portrait of Margaret Bridwell Bowdle