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Taro Yashima Papers

Summary Information
Title: Taro Yashima Papers
Dates: 1943-1961
Creator: Yashima, Taro, 1908-
Extent: 2.1 cubic feet (3 boxes)
Location: See Detailed Descriptions for Each Title Item for Box Locations
Language: English
Collection Number: CLRC-83
Taro Yashima's papers focus on his work as an illustrator of children's books. The collection contains production material for five titles published between 1943 and 1961 and includes illustrations, dummies, and one galley proof.

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

Access and Use
Access Restrictions:

Collection is open for researchers with no restrictions. Registration with the collection is required.


This collection is protected by the Copyright Law of the United States (Title 17, U.S. Code). It is the user's responsibility to verify copyright ownership and to obtain all necessary permissions prior to the reproduction, publication, or other use of any portion of these materials.


Crow Boy, 1955

Momo's Kitten, 1961

New Sun, The, 1943

Plenty to Watch, 1954

Umbrella, 1958

Biographical Sketch

Taro Yahima (the pseudonym for Jun Atsushi Iwamatsu) was born in September 21, 1908 in Kagoshima, Japan, and immigrated to the United States in 1939. He studied art in Tokyo at the Imperial Art Academy from 1927 to 1930 and later at the Art Students League in New York City, from 1939 to 1941. He first used the pseudonym Yashima during his service with the Office of Strategic Services in World War II. Yashima began writing and illustrating books in the 1940s. His first work, autobiographical in content, The New Sun , was published in 1943. Yashima's first book specifically for children, The Village Tree, came out in 1953. Like several of his later works, it would focus on his and his collaborator's (and wife), Mitsu Yashima, experiences growing up in Japan. Yashima also wrote several books based on his daughter, Momo, including Umbrella (1958) and Momo's Kitten (1961). Yashima's works have been widely praised by critics for their simplicity and vivid colors that convey movement and feeling, and for his sensitivity to children's concerns, a first umbrella and kitten, the torments of being different and teased for it. Three of Yashima's works have been Caldecott Medal runners-up, Umbrella , Crow Boy , and Seashore Story .

Collection Scope and Content Note

The collection contains production material for five titles published between 1943 and 1961. It includes dummies with typescript, a galley proof, illustrations, including ink and crayon sketches, charcoal, pencil and watercolor sketches, crayon, ink and watercolor sketches, crayon and pencil sketches, and caryon, pencil and watercolor sketches. The bulk of the production material is for two titles, Umbrella and Momo's Kitten.

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.
  • Yashima, Taro, 1908-
Collection Contents
 Location  Title
Crow Boy 1955 
Note  1955
Box MC814
crayon, ink, pencil and tempera dummy with typescript (44 p.)  Box MC814
Momo's Kitten 1961 
Note  1961
Box MC857
galley proof (3 p.)  Box MC857
Box MC814
crayon, ink, pencil and tempera dummy with typescript (40 p.)  Box MC814
New Sun, The 1943 
Note  1943
Box MC814
ink sketch, framed (1 p.)  Box MC814
Plenty to Watch 1954 
Note  1954
Box MC814
crayon, ink, pencil and tempera dummy with typescript (44 p.)  Box MC814
Umbrella 1958 
Note  1958
Box MC421
crayon and ink dummy with typescript (52 p.)  Box MC421
charcoal, pencil and watercolor sketch (1 p.)  Box MC421
crayon sketch (1 p.)  Box MC421
crayon, ink and pencil sketches (5 p.)  Box MC421
Box MC421a
crayon, ink and watercolor sketch (1 p.)  Box MC421a
crayon and pencil sketches (3 p.)  Box MC421a
Box MF421a
crayaon, pencil and watercolor sketches (4 p.)  Box MF421a