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Peter Spier Papers

Summary Information
Title: Peter Spier Papers
Dates: 1956-1993
Creator: Spier, Peter
Extent: .21 linear ft.--written .58 cubic ft.--illustrative
Location: See Detailed Descriptions for Each Title Item for Box Locations
Language: English
Collection Number: CLRC-1876
Peter Spier has contributed production materials for seven titles to the Kerlan Collection, including illustrations, proof sheets, sketches, research materials, typescripts, correspondence, and notes.

Repository: University of Minnesota Libraries Children's Literature Research Collections

Access and Use
Acquisition Information:

Peter Spier became interested in the Kerlan Collection when he was asked to autograph copies of his books for the collection in 1959. That year he gave Dr. Kerlan the production materials for one book jacket, for Hippolyte, the Crab King , selecting the materials with a plan for display to demonstrate the steps used in jacket production for that book. He continued to donate materials to the Kerlan Collection over the years.


Materials are arranged by title.

Biographical Sketch

Peter Edward Spier was born in the Netherlands in 1927 and received his art education from the Royal Academy of Art in Amsterdam. He began his career as a junior editor for Elsevier before coming to the United States in 1951. While he began his illustrating career in 1946, he did not begin his freelance career until 1952. After illustrating about 50 books by others, he began writing his own, and has illustrated about 100 titles. In 1978 he won the Caldecott Medal for Noah's Ark . His work has been translated into 24 languages. In several interviews he has outlined his creation technique, starting with a complete dummy with detailed pencil drawings, and then filling the pages with drawings from life. He works from blueprint to creat his separations, and goes on to proofs. He has received numerous awards and honors for his work.

Biographical Sources: Something About the Author , vols. 4, 54 Children's Literature Review , vol. 5

Collection Scope and Content Note

The collection includes illustrations and studies in various media, proof sheets, research materials, typescripts, some corrected and some in Dutch, front matter, dummies, layout sheets, correspondence, and notes.

Subject Terms
Indexing Terms
  • The collection is indexed under the following headings in the catalog of the University of Minnesota Libraries. Researchers desiring materials about related topics, persons or places should search the catalog using these headings.
  • Spier, Peter
Collection Contents
 Location  Title
Cow Who Fell in the Canal, The 1957 
Note  Garden City, N.Y.: Doubleday, 1957
Box MC965
ink and watercolor illustration (1 p.)  Box MC965
Father, May I Come? 1993 
Note New York: Doubleday, 1993
Box MC965
typescript (3 p.)  Box MC965
Box MF1844 folder 2
typescript, corrected, English and Dutch (14 p.)  Box MF1844 folder 2
typescript, corrected photocopy, English and Dutch (41 p.)  Box MF1844 folder 2
front matter (2 p.)  Box MF1844 folder 2
Box MF1844 folder 1
page proof (28 p.)  Box MF1844 folder 1
Box MF1844 folders 1, 3, 4
correspondence (86 p.)  Box MF1844 folders 1, 3, 4
Box MC965 MF1844 folders 2, 4
notes (15 p.)  Box MC965 MF1844 folders 2, 4
Box MF1844 folder 4
clipping (1 p.)  Box MF1844 folder 4
contract, photocopy (2 p.)  Box MF1844 folder 4
Box MF1844 folders 5-7
research material, pamphlets (1 p.)  Box MF1844 folders 5-7
Box MF1844 folder 1
illustrations, fax (2 p.)  Box MF1844 folder 1
Box MC965
ink illustrations (9 p.)  Box MC965
separation (1 p.)  Box MC965
sheets proof (32 p.)  Box MC965
author's dummy (13 p.)  Box MC965
dummy, corrected photocopy (13 p.)  Box MC965
publisher's dummy (26 p.)  Box MC965
layout sheets (4 p.)  Box MC965
sheet jacket proof (1 p.)  Box MC965
studies (42 p.)  Box MC965
studies, photocopy (71 p.)  Box MC965
research material, posters (3 p.)  Box MC965
bags (3 p.)  Box MC965
Hippolyte, the Crab King 1956 
Note New York: Harcourt, Brace, 1956
Box MC965
ink jacket illustration with 2 separations (1 p.)  Box MC965
ink and watercolor jacket study (1 p.)  Box MC965
sheet jacket proof (1 p.)  Box MC965
Noah's Ark 1977 
Note Garden City, N.Y.: Doubleday, 1977
Box O.S. 4
publisher's proof (1 p.)  Box O.S. 4
100 More Story Poems 1960 
Note New York: Crowell, 1960
Box MC965
ink illustrations (8 p.)  Box MC965
jacket paste-up with 2 separations (1 p.)  Box MC965
layout (1 p.)  Box MC965
Peter Spier's Circus! 1991 
Note New York: Doubleday, 1991
Box MF1990 folder 1
correspondence by FAX (7 p.)  Box MF1990 folder 1
Box MF1990, folder 1
dummy (48 p.)  Box MF1990, folder 1
Wonder Tales of Seas and Ships 1959 
Note New York: Doubleday, 1959
Box MC965
ink and watercolor jacket study (1 p.)  Box MC965
ink studies (2 p.)  Box MC965
sheets illustration proof (3 p.)  Box MC965