Dear Ms. Maland,
I am organizing an exhibition at the Morgan LIbrary & Museum in New York about the work of an unknown artist named Rick [Richard William] Barton, and I am hoping you might be able to assist my research.
From public records and other research, I've learned the following:
Rick Barton was born on May 13, 1928 in New York City, and moved to California in the 1950s, first to San Francisco and then to San Diego in the mid-1970s. He died on December 19, 1992. He served in the Navy 1946-47 and is buried at Ft. Rosencrans National Cemetery in San Diego.
We are hoping to publish a catalogue of his wonderful drawings, and I am trying to determine if he has an heir who might claim copyright over his work. I wonder if a will was filed before his death, or if there are other public records that you can share with me. His time in San Diego is a mystery, as his surviving drawings (at least those I have found) are all from the 1950s and '60s.