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Elizabeth Ripley papers

CLRC.RIPLEY

This is a finding aid. It is a description of archival material held at the Free Library of Philadelphia. Unless otherwise noted, the materials described below are physically available in our reading room, and not digitally available through the web.

Summary Information

Repository:
Free Library of Philadelphia: Children's Literature Research Collection
Creator:
Ripley, Elizabeth
Title:
Elizabeth Ripley papers
Date [inclusive]:
1965-1968
Call Number:
CLRC.RIPLEY
Extent:
1.25 Linear feet
Language:
English
Language of Materials note:
The majority of the materials in this collection are in English, with some correspondence in French.
Abstract:
This is a collection of manuscripts and notes by Elizabeth Ripley for her last three artist biographies: Copley: A Biography,  Hokusai: A Biography, and  Rodin: A Biography. Materials include drafts, outlines, notes, dummies, proofs, photographs, and correspondence.
Cite as:
[Description and date of item], [Box and folder number], Elizabeth Ripley papers, 1965-1968, Free Library of Philadelphia, Children’s Literature Research Collection.
PDF Version:

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Biography/History

Elizabeth Ripley was born on June 9, 1906 in New Haven, Connecticut. She graduated from Smith College in 1928 and went on to study theatrical design and drama at the Art Students League in New York from 1940 to 1942. She then lived in Europe and Asia for several years, working in various theater groups. She owned and managed her own greeting card company called Elizabeth Ripley Cards in New London, Connecticut from 1948 to 1956, and worked as a writer and illustrator for Workshop Cards Corporation from 1956 to 1962. She illustrated books of jokes, Lots of Laughs (1942) and  Dopey Doings (1950), and limericks,  Nothing but Nonsense (1943). She also wrote a series of biographies about famous artists, including  Leonardo da Vinci: A Biography (1952),  Rembrandt: A Biography (1955), and  Rodin: A Biography (1967). These books served as an introduction to these painters and sculptors for adolescents. She died on June 21, 1969.

Bibliography

Something About the Author, vol. 1.

Scope and Contents

This is a collection of manuscripts and notes by Elizabeth Ripley for her last three artist biographies: Copley: A Biography, about John Singleton Copley, the American colonial painter best known for his portraits;  Hokusai: A Biography, about Katsushika Hokusai, the Japanese artist best known for the series "Thirty-six views of Mt. Fuji"; and  Rodin: A Biography, about the sculptor Auguste Rodin, well-known for his sculpture "The Thinker." Materials include drafts, outlines, notes, dummies, page proofs, galley proofs, photographs, and correspondence. This collection provides insight into a professional author's process for writing biographies intended for a juvenile audience. Of particular interest are her handwritten notes on the artists' lives, some of which were taken abroad while researching. There is also a good deal of correspondence with different museums seeking permission to obtain photographs of artwork, and with her publisher following the development of each biography from the contract to publication.

Arrangement note

This collection is arranged in three series, alphabetically by title: 1. Copley: A Biography; 2. Hokusai: A Biography; and 3. Rodin: A Biography. Within each series the materials are arranged in probable order of creation. The author's original order was retained where possible.

The galley proofs are housed in a box with the proofs from the Elizabeth Hoffman Honness papers.

Administrative Information

Publication Information

Free Library of Philadelphia: Children's Literature Research Collection

Finding Aid Author

Finding aid prepared by Garrett Boos

Sponsor

The processing of this collection was made possible through generous funding from The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, administered through the Council on Library and Information Resources’ “Cataloging Hidden Special Collections and Archives” Project.

Access Restrictions

This collection is open to researchers by appointment. Please contact the Curator for information on access.

Use Restrictions

The right of access to material does not imply the right of publication. Permission for reprinting, reproduction, or extensive quotation from the rare books, manuscripts, prints, or drawings must be obtained through written application, stating the use to be made of the material. The reader bears the responsibility for any possible infringement of copyright laws in the publication of such material. A reproduction fee will be charged if the material is to be reproduced in a commercial publication.

Immediate Source of Acquisition note

Gift of Elizabeth Blake Ripley, 1976.

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Controlled Access Headings

Form/Genre(s)
  • Bluelines (proofs)
  • Correspondence
  • Dummies (printed matter)
  • Galley proofs
  • Manuscripts
  • Negatives (photographic)
  • Photographs
  • Proofs (printed matter)
  • Typescripts
Personal Name(s)
  • Copley, John Singleton, 1738-1815
  • Katsushika, Hokusai, 1760-1849
  • Rodin, Auguste, 1840-1917
Subject(s)
  • Artists--Biography
  • Children's authors--20th century
  • Children's literature--20th century

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Collection Inventory

Copley: A Biography, 1967.

Box Folder

Research notes and timeline of Copley's life, manuscript, circa 1966.

1 1

Correspondence with Museum of Fine Arts Boston to obtain photographs of artwork, typescript, 1966 June-September.

1 2

Correspondence regarding permission to reproduce "A Boy with a Flying Squirrel (Henry Pelham)," manuscript and typescript, 1966 June-December.

1 3

Correspondence with museums to obtain photographs of artwork, manuscript and typescript, 1966 June-1968 July.

1 4-5

Illustration card file, manuscript, 27 sheets, circa 1967.

1 6
Photographs of Copley's work, 35 items, circa 1967.
Scope and Contents note

Also contains original folder with annotations.

1 7-10

Correspondence with publisher accompanying draft, typescript, 1967 April.

1 11

Draft with editor's notes, typescript, circa 1967.

1 12-13

Dummy, paper with text and illustrations pasted in, 72 pages, circa 1967.

General Physical Description note
This material is too fragile for use without supervision by the Curator.
1 14

Blueline proof, circa 1967.

1 15

Galley proof, 1968.

G 1

Corrected page proofs, 1968.

G 2

Page proofs, circa 1967.

2 1

Correspondence with publisher, typescript, 1966 June-1967 September.

2 2

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Hokusai: A Biography, 1968.

Box Folder

Research notes, manuscript, circa 1967.

3 1

Research notes taken during trip to Japan, manuscript, 1967 May.

3 2

Notes about illustrations, manuscript, circa 1967.

3 3

"Outline taken from notes", circa 1967.

3 4

Bibliography, manuscript, circa 1967.

3 5

Draft with editor's corrections and printer's marks, typescript, circa 1968.

3 6

Correspondence with the Museum of Fine Arts Boston to obtain photographs of artwork, typescript, 1967 September-December.

3 7

Correspondence with museums to obtain photographs of artwork, typescript, 1967 February-October.

3 8

Photographs of Hokusai's work, 38 items, circa 1967.

3 9-12

Discarded images and sample layouts, photocopies, stats, and typescript, circa 1968.

3 13

Layouts, tracing paper with text pasted on, circa 1968.

3 14

Dummy, paper with text and illustrations pasted in, 72 pages, circa 1968.

General Physical Description note
This material is too fragile for use without supervision by the Curator.
3 15-16

Blueline proof, circa 1968.

3 17

Galley proof, 1968.

G 5

Correspondence with publisher, typescript, 1967 March-1968 May.

3 18

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Rodin: A Biography, 1966.

Box Folder

Research notes and timeline of Rodin's life, manuscript, circa 1965.

2 3

Research notes taken on trip to Brussels, Antwerp, and Paris, manuscript, 1965 May.

2 4

Bibliography, manuscript, circa 1965.

2 5

List of artwork, manuscript, circa 1965.

2 6

Outline, manuscript, circa 1965.

2 7

Correspondence with museums to obtain photographs of artwork, manuscript and typescript, 1965 June-1966 April.

2 8-9

Photographs of Rodin's work, 39 items, circa 1965-1966.

2 11-14

Photographs not used, 4 items, circa 1965-1966.

2 15

Draft, revised typescript, circa 1966.

2 16

Captions, front matter, index, layouts, and lettering, text taped to page, circa 1966.

2 17

Dummy, paper with text and illustrations pasted in, 70 pages, circa 1966.

General Physical Description note
This material is too fragile for use without supervision by the Curator.
2 18

Blueline proof, circa 1966.

2 19

Correspondence with publisher, typescript, 1965 June-1966 October.

2 20

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