Columbia University graduate Alfred H. Gumaer was appointed Instructor in Architectural Design at Penn in 1907. Over time, the historical aspect of art and architecture became the center of his interest. Gumaer was promoted to full Professor of the History of Art in 1933. A beloved teacher and campus personality, his bequest has strengthened Penn Libraries resources for the study of the history of art.
During the 1940s, the Libraries acquired many published works essential to teaching and research in the field. More recently, thanks to his gift, Penn has added significant works including Marc-Antoine Laugier's Maniere de bien juger des ouvrages de peinture (1771) and H. A. Vetter, Kleine einfamilien Hauser mit 50 bis 100 Quadratmeter Wohnflache (1932).