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MIRCEA VASILIU PAPERS

de Grummond Children's Literature Collection
The University of Southern Mississippi


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Creator: Mircea Vasiliu
Title: Mircea Vasiliu Papers
Dates: 1957 - 1984
Quantity: 8.45 cubic feet (11 boxes, 1 tube, and 1 map case drawer)
Identification: DG1009

Abstract: The Mircea Vasiliu Papers contain typescripts, galleys, illustrations, color separations, dummies, correspondence, and Christmas cards created and accumulated by Mircea Vasiliu between 1957 and 1984. A Romanian diplomat before his defection to the United States in 1948, Vasiliu began drawing free-lance illustrations for adult and children's books in the 1950s. His most well-known works include A Day at the Beach and Miss Agatha's Lark.

Biographical Note

Mircea Vasiliu (pronounced Vas-ILL-you) was born in Bucharest, Romania in 1920 to Matei and Florica (Tantareanu) Vasiliu. Although he had published two books by age sixteen, Vasiliu trained for a diplomatic career and received a law degree from the University of Bucharest. At the age of 23 he became an attaché in the Romanian Ministry for Foreign Affairs. In 1946 he was assigned to the Romanian Legation in Washington, D.C. Vasiliu resigned his position in 1948 following the Communist takeover of Romania, and he received asylum in the United States. In 1955 he published The Pleasure is Mine, a humorous autobiography of his diplomatic years. A later memoir, Which Way to the Melting Pot? (1963), recounts his adjustment to American life. In the 1950s Vasiliu began creating free-lance illustrations both for adult and children's books and soon authored his own children's books. His most well-known works include A Day at the Beach and Miss Agatha's Lark.

Vasiliu and his wife Natalie lived in New York and were both avid birdwatchers, an activity prominent in several Vasiliu books and Christmas cards. Mircea Vasiliu passed away on October 26, 2008.

Sources:
The Pleasure is Mine, by Mircea Vasiliu (New York: Harper & Bros., 1955)
Sources within the Mircea Vasiliu Papers


Scope and Content Note

The Mircea Vasiliu Papers contain typescripts, galleys, illustrations, color separations, dummies, correspondence, and Christmas cards created and accumulated by Mircea Vasiliu between 1957 and 1984. Vasiliu's papers were created from his composition of twenty-one published books, his creation of thirty-six Christmas cards, and letters sent to the de Grummond Children's Literature Collection. The material is organized into three series: books, Christmas cards, and the de Grummond Children's Literature Collection.

The Books Series contains typescripts, galleys, illustrations, and color separations, dummies, and correspondence for twenty-one books published between 1957 and 1984. The material documents Vasiliu's illustration process. First, Vasiliu often created a dummy composed of pencil sketches on tracing paper that either were taped to thicker paper and folded or were taped directly onto layout boards. The dummies for Where is Alfred? offer the best examples of this process. Vasiliu next created pen and ink drawings to serve as the basis of three- and four-color color separations. The material for several titles includes not only black & white drawings but full-color illustrations as well. A Day at the Beach and Miss Agatha's Lark are fine examples. The papers in the Books Series are arranged alphabetically by title and the material for each book is arranged chronologically in order of creation when known.

The Christmas Card Series contains illustrations and printed cards for thirty-six Christmas card designs created between the late 1960s and 1984. It is organized into four subseries: Magi and Nativity Scenes, Birds and Other Animals, Santa Claus, and Mary and Jesus. The papers for each subseries are arranged chronologically where known. The material for each design usually includes the original color drawing or painting and a printed card. Vasiliu designed most of his cards for the American Artists Greeting Cards Company.

The letters sent to the de Grummond Children's Literature Collection were selected and photocopied from the de Grummond Collection's correspondence file because they provide information on Vasiliu's work or personal interests. They are arranged chronologically.


Series and Subseries

A. Books (1957-1978)

Are There Any More at Home Like You? (1973)

Better than Oceans (1976)

The Big Joke Game (1972)

A Day at the Beach (1977)

Do You Remember? (1966)

Folk and Fairy Tales from Around the World (1970)

Happy-Go-Hoppy (1972)

Hark, the Little Angel (1965)

The Merry Wind (1967)

Miss Agatha's Lark (1968)

Mortimer, the Friendly Dragon (1968)

The Most Beautiful Word (1970)

Once Upon a Pirate Ship (1974)

The Royal Giraffe (1971)

The Singing Shoemaker (1957)

What's Happening? (1970)

Where is Alfred? (1978)

Will There Never Be a Prince? (1970)

The Wind and Me (1971)

The World is Many Things (1967)

The Year Goes Round (1964)

B. Christmas Cards ([ca. late 1960s]-1984)

1. Magi and Nativity Scenes

2. Birds and Other Animals

3. Santa Claus

4. Mary and Jesus

C. de Grummond Children's Literature Collection


Restrictions

Restrictions on Use

Noncirculating; available for research.

Copyright Restrictions

The collection is protected by the Copyright Law of the United States (Title 17, U.S. Code). Reproductions can be made only if they are to be used for "private study, scholarship, or research." 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, other than that noted above.


Related Material

A typescript and galley for The Big Joke Game are contained in the Scott Corbett Papers (DG0223).


Administrative Information

Preferred Citation

(Identify the item), Mircea Vasiliu Papers, de Grummond Children's Literature Collection, University of Southern Mississippi Libraries, (cite the item's box/folder numbers).

Provenance

These papers were donated to the de Grummond Children's Literature Collection of the University of Southern Mississippi Libraries by Mircea Vasiliu and publishers John Day and Bobbs-Merrill between 1969 and 1985.

Processing Information

Processed by C. Alder, April 2003. Encoded into EAD Version 1.0 by Danielle L. Bishop. This finding aid is the product of a grant funded by the National Endowment for the Humanities.


Container Listing

Box/Folder

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A. Books

Are There Any More at Home Like You? story by Sondra Rosenberg, illustrations by Mircea Vasiliu (New York: St. Martin's Press, 1973)
1/1Pen & ink illustrations for pp. 10, 21, 27, 54, 70, 101, 123, and 133, (8 items)
Better than Oceans story by Emily Kimbrough, illustrations by Mircea Vasiliu (New York: Harper & Row, 1976)
1/2Pen & ink illustrations for pp. 2, 18-19, 28, 35, 44, 48, 60-61, 78-79, 92-94, 148, 155, and 178, (14 items)
1/3Pen & ink illustrations for pp. 190, 203, 207, 224-25, 236-37, 245-46, 248, 284, 291, 299, 305, 312, and 324-25, (14 items)
1/4Color separations for endpapers, (1 item)
1/5Color separations for dust jacket, (1 item )
1/6Text for jacket flap, (1 item )
The Big Joke Game story by Scott Corbett, illustrations by Mircea Vasiliu (New York: Dutton, 1972)
1/7Color separations for pp. 14-15, 28-29, 31, 41, 53, 61, 74-75, 85, 98, and 110, (7 items)
1/8Pen & ink illustration for dust jacket, with dimension chart, (1 item )
1/9Paste-up of dust jacket text, (1 item )
1/10Dust jackets with color separation corrections, (2 items)
A Day at the Beach story and illustrations by Mircea Vasiliu (New York: Random House, 1977)
1/11Preliminary pencil sketches on tracing paper, taped to layout sheets, for pp. 1-32 and alternate version of pp. 28-29, (18 items)
1/12Pen & ink illustrations taped to layout boards, some with text overlays, for pp. 2-32, (14 items)
2/1Early color illustrations for pp. 9, 16-17, 20-21, 24-25, and 30-31, with handwritten or typed text on overlays, (5 items)
2/2Color illustrations with text paste-up for copyright / title page and half title page, (2 items)
2/3Color illustrations with text paste-up for pp. 4-9, (3 items )
2/4Color illustrations with text paste-up for pp. 10-15, (3 items )
2/5Color illustrations with text paste-up for pp. 16-21, (3 items )
2/6Color illustrations with text paste-up for pp. 22-27, (3 items )
3/1Color illustrations with text paste-up for pp. 28-32, (3 items )
3/2Rough pencil sketches of dust jacket cover, (3 items )
3/3Color illustration for dust jacket, with text paste-up, ( 1 item)
3/4Galley, titled 'One Day at the Beach,' 15 October 1976, (2 pp. )
Do You Remember? story and illustrations by Mircea Vasiliu (New York: John Day Co., 1966)
3/5Color separations for dust jacket and pp. 7, 9-19, and 20-21, (12 items)
3/6Color separations for pp. 22-29, (12 items )
3/7Color separations for pp. 30-31 and 33-38, (12 items)
3/8Color separations for pp. 39-46, (11 items )
3/9Galley, lightly edited, (9 pp. )
3/10Blue dummy, edited, 16 March 1966, (1 item)
3/11Memorandum received from publisher, 6 May 1966, (1 item)
3/12 Color separation of unused endpapers, (1 item )
Folk and Fairy Tales from Around the World compiled by Ethna Sheehan, illustrations by Mircea Vasiliu (New York: Dodd, Mead, 1970)
3/13Pen & ink illustrations for pp. 5, 11, 16-17, 29, 35, 39, 56-57, 69, 77, 89, 94-95, 103, 114-15, 122-23, 132-33, 139, and 146-47, (17 items)
Happy-Go-Hoppy story by Myna Lockwood, illustrations by Mircea Vasiliu (New York: Golden Press, 1972)
Map Drawer 3/F-1Press sheets, (4 items)
Hark, the Little Angel story and illustrations by Mircea Vasiliu (New York: John Day Co., 1965)
4/1Color separations for pp. 8-20, (13 items)
4/2Color separations for pp. 22-31 and 33-35, (12 items)
4/3Color separations for pp. 36-42 and 44-45, (11 items )
4/4Color separations for pp. 46-56, (14 items )
4/5Color separation for dust jacket illustration, (1 item)
4/6Dust jacket, (1 item )
4/7Handwritten notes and color guide, (3 items)
The Merry Wind story and illustrations by Mircea Vasiliu (New York: John Day Co., 1967)
4/8Typescript, lightly edited, (1 item )
4/9Color separations for pp. 3-13, (6 items)
4/10Color separations for pp. 14-25, (6 items )
5/1Color separations for pp. 26-37, (6 items )
5/2Color separations for pp. 38-48, (6 items )
5/3Color separation and paste-up for dust jacket and title page, (3 items)
5/4Dust jacket, lightly edited, (1 item )
5/5Galley, edited and marked 'Reader's Proof,' 19 December 1966, ( 3 pp.)
Miss Agatha's Lark story by Nancy Sherman, illustrations by Mircea Vasiliu (Indianapolis: Bobbs-Merrill, 1968)
5/6Pen & ink illustrations for pp. 1, 4-5, 8-9, 12-13, 16-17, 20-21, 24-25, 28-29, and 32, with paste-up text on overlays, (9 items)
5/7Color illustrations for pp. 2-3, 6-7, 10-11, 14-15, 18-19, 22-23, 26-27, and 30-31, with paste-up text on overlays, (8 items)
5/8Proofs of color pages from above folder, including text correction on pp. 30-31, (5 items)
5/9Galley with proofs of front matter, one labeled 12 September 1967, (7 pp. )
5/10 Matted color illustration for dust jacket, with paste-up text, (1 item )
5/11Paste-up and proof of dust jacket flaps, (2 items)
Mortimer, the Friendly Dragon story and illustrations by Mircea Vasiliu (New York: John Day Co., 1968)
6/1First text dummy for pp. 1-48, lightly edited, with one pencil drawing, (1 signature)
6/2Second text dummy, first signature, pp. 1-16, (1 signature )
6/3Second text dummy, second signature, pp. 17-32, (1 signature )
6/4Second text dummy, third signature, pp. 33-46, (1 signature )
6/5Galley, edited, 13 September 1967, (6 pp. )
6/6Galley, 13 September 1967, (15 pp. )
6/7Pen & ink illustrations for pp. 4, 8-9, 12-13, 16-17, 20-21, 24-25, 28-29, 32-33, 36-37, 41, and 44-45, (13 items)
6/8Color separations for pp. 3, 6-7, 10-11, 14-15, 18-19, and 22-23, ( 7 items)
6/9Color separations for pp. 26-27, 30-31, 34-35, 38-39, 42-43, 46-47, and endpapers, (7 items)
6/10Color separations and paste-up of dust jacket, (1 item )
6/11Red color separation for pp. 46-47, with attached note, 16 November 1967, (2 items)
6/12Memorandum received from publisher, 6 December 1967, (1 item )
The Most Beautiful Word story and illustrations by Mircea Vasiliu (New York: John Day Co., 1970)
6/13Photocopy of first typescript, edited, (7 pp.)
6/14Photocopy of second typescript, edited, (7 pp. )
6/15Color separations for pp. 1-7, (4 items )
6/16Color separations for pp. 8-17, (5 items )
7/1Color separations for pp. 18-25, (4 items )
7/2Color separations for pp. 26-32, (4 items )
7/3Color separation for dust jacket, (1 item )
7/4Paste-up of dust jacket flaps, with photograph and negative of author, (2 items)
7/5Galley, lightly edited, 13 February 1970, (3 pp. )
Once upon a Pirate Ship story and illustrations by Mircea Vasiliu (New York: Golden Press / Racine, Wisc.: Western Publishing Co., 1974)
7/6 Sketch dummy, (1 signature )
Tube 1Press sheets, (8 items)
The Royal Giraffe story by Linda Gould, illustrations by Mircea Vasiliu (New York: Dutton, 1971)
7/7Sketch dummy, (2 signatures)
7/8Color separations for pp. 2-3 and 6-17, (7 items)
7/9Color separations for pp. 18-27 and 29-31, (7 items )
7/10Color separation for dust jacket, (1 item )
The Singing Shoemaker story by Alison B. Alessios, illustrations by Mircea Vasiliu (New York: Scribner, 1957)
8/1Pen & ink illustrations for pp. 7, 16, 24-25, 40-41, 43, 56, 68-69, 71, 82, 96, 105, 112, 115, and 127, (17 items)
8/2Dust jacket, (1 item )
What's Happening? story and illustrations by Mircea Vasiliu (New York: John Day Co., 1970)
8/3Color separations for pp. 1-11, (6 items)
8/4Color separations for pp. 12-23, (6 items )
8/5Color separations for pp. 24-35, (6 items )
8/6Color separations for pp. 36-48, (7 items )
8/7Paste-up and lettering for book cover and spine, (1 item)
Where is Alfred? story and illustrations by Mircea Vasiliu (New York: Random House, 1978)
8/8Publisher correspondence, September 1977-March 1978, (7 items)
8/9Typed outline, ( 4 pp.)
8/10First typescript, (8 pp. )
8/11Photocopy of second typescript, (15 pp.)
8/12First sketch dummy, (1 item )
8/13Second sketch dummy, (1 item )
8/14Pencil sketches for front cover and pp. 2-3, (6 items)
8/15Preliminary pencil sketches on tracing paper taped to layout sheets for pp. 1-3, 6-9, 12-13, 16-23, and 26-32, (14 pp.)
8/16Pencil sketches for pp. 22-23, one is taped to layout sheet, (2 items)
Map Drawer 3/F-2Pen & ink illustrations for pp. 2-5 and 29, (3 items )
8/17Pen & ink illustrations for pp. 1, 6-28, and 30-32, (15 items)
9/1Color illustrations for pp. 1-9, with black outlines drawn on acetate overlays, (5 items)
9/2Color illustrations for pp. 10-18, with black outlines drawn on acetate overlays, (5 items)
9/3Color illustrations for pp. 19-27, with black outlines drawn on acetate overlays, (5 items )
9/4Color illustrations for pp. 28-32, with black outlines drawn on acetate overlays, (5 items )
9/5Color illustration for cover, (1 item )
9/6Three-color color separation on acetate overlays, with text, for p. 24, (1 item)
Will there Never be a Prince? story by Sondra Rosenberg, illustrations by Mircea Vasiliu (New York: St. Martin's Press, 1970)
9/7Pen & ink illustrations for pp. 4, 41, 60, 75, and 116, (5 items)
The Wind and Me verse by Beverly Butler, illustrations by Mircea Vasiliu (New York: Dodd, Mead, 1971)
10/1Color separations for pp. 3-31, with text paste-up on overlays, (15 items)
The World is Many Things story and illustrations by Mircea Vasiliu (New York: John Day Co., 1967)
10/2Galley, 9 June 1966, (4 pp.)
The Year Goes Round story and illustrations by Mircea Vasiliu (New York: John Day Co., 1964)
10/3Rough sketch dummy, with typed text pasted-on, (1 item)
10/4Typescript, lightly edited, (3 pp. )
10/5Color separations or partial color separations for pp. 6-7, 16-17, 24, 28, and 46-47, (5 items)
10/6Color separation for dust jacket, (1 item )
10/7Galley, (5 pp. )



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B. Christmas Cards

1. Magi and Nativity Scenes
10/8Color drawing: Magi (wearing identical crowns) with Mary and Jesus, 1971, (1 item )
10/9Pencil sketch, line drawings, color plate, and printed card: Magi on horses, [ca. 1974-1982], (5 items )
10/10Line drawing, color plate, and printed card: Magi with Mary and Jesus on marbleized background, [ca. 1974-1982], (3 items )
10/11Line drawing, color plate, and printed card: Magi, one with arms outstretched, with Mary and Jesus, [ca. 1974-1982], (2 items )
10/12Color drawing and printed card: Magi with Mary, Joseph, and Jesus, [ca. 1974-1982], (2 items )
10/13 Line drawing, color plate, and printed card: Magi approaching Bethlehem, 1974, (2 items )
10/14Line drawing, color plate, and printed card: Magi and shepherds approaching Bethlehem, [ca. 1974-1982], (2 items )
10/15Color drawing and printed card: Magi approaching distant palm-treed Bethlehem, [ca. 1974-1982], (2 items )
10/16 Painting and printed card: Magi riding camels, [ca. 1974-1982], (2 items )
10/17Line drawing, color plate, and printed card: Magi approaching treeless Bethlehem, [ca. 1974-1982], (2 items )
10/18 Painting and printed card: 'Persian Nativity,' [ca. 1974-1982], (2 items )
2. Birds and Other Animals
10/19Painting: poodle and cat in chair, [ca. late 1960s-1970], (1 item )
10/20Painting: lion and lamb, [ca. late 1960s-1970], (1 item )
10/21Painting and printed card: 'The Peaceable Kingdom,' 1973, (2 items)
10/22Painting and printed card: 3 birds with holly sprig, [ca. 1974-1979], (2 items)
10/23Painting and printed card: single bird with holly sprig, 1976, (2 items )
10/24Painting and printed card: bird feeder with cardinal, 1977, (2 items )
10/25 Pencil sketches, painting, and printed card: wreath of birds, [ca. 1981], (6 items )
11/1Pencil sketch, drawing, and printed card: 5 birds with a holly sprig on the ground, [ca. 1981], (3 items )
11/2 Painting and printed card: sheepdog in front of fireplace, [ca. 1981], (2 items)
11/3Painting and printed card: animals with Christmas tree, 1983, (2 items )
11/4Drawing: 5 birds with a holly sprig in a tree, n.d., (1 item )
11/5Drawing and printed card: 6 birds with holly spring, n.d., (2 items)
3. Santa Claus
11/6Paintings: Santa Claus painting reindeer portrait, [ca. 1969], (2 items)
11/7Painting: reindeer topiary, [ca. late 1960s-1970], (1 item)
11/8Painting and printed card: Santa Claus in various modes of transportation, [ca. 1976], (2 items)
11/9Painting and printed card: Christmas parade, [ca. 1976], (2 items )
11/10Painting and printed card: Santa Claus with bonsai, 1981, (2 items )
11/11Painting and printed card: Santa Claus bird-watching, 1982, (2 items )
11/12Painting and printed card: Santa Claus golfing, 1984, (2 items )
11/13Painting and printed card: Santa Claus dressed as a king, n.d., (2 items )
4. Mary and Jesus
11/14 Line drawing and printed card: Mary and Jesus, [ca. 1974-1982], (2 items)
11/15Color drawing and printed card: Mary and Jesus, [ca. 1974-1982], (2 items )
11/16 Line drawing and printed card: Mary and Jesus with deer, [ca. 1974-1982], (2 items )
11/17 Color drawing and printed card: Mary and Jesus with doves, [ca. 1974-1982], ( 2 items )
11/18 Line drawing, color plate, and printed card: Mary and Jesus with animals, 1979, (3 items )
11/19Ticketed request for camera work to be done on unknown Christmas card design, (1 item )



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C. de Grummond Children's Literature Collection

11/20Letters sent to the de Grummond Children's Literature Collection, 1979-1980, (3 items)



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