Materials received from Polly Curren from 1966 to 1979.
Noncirculating; available for research.
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.
Polly Curren was born October 2, 1917 in Boston, Massachusetts. Her "ambition was to work with children--to teach them--to play with them--to entertain them." As a child, she attended the Russell School of Expression and Literature in Boston. Because of this experience, Polly and her sister Josette opened the School of Expression for Children in their parents' home. She became deaf in the late 1940s, so she decided to turn her attention to writing books for children. By the end of her career, she was the author of more than twenty-three books. Her first, The Little Red Caboose that Ran Away, was published in 1950. She was also one of the ghost writers for the Trixie Belden series, in which she wrote under the pseudonym Kathryn Kenny.
She married George S. Fedosiuk, a civil engineer, in 1941, and they had one son, Donald. Polly Curren passed away in 2011 at the age of 94.
Scope and Content
The Curren papers are divided into four series: correspondence, books, other published materials, and unpublished materials. The correspondence includes 19 letters to the de Grummond Collection written from 1966 to 1979. In addition, correspondence may be found under specific titles. The fifteen book titles represented in the collection date from 1953 to 1977, and they are arranged alphabetically by title. Materials for each title are arranged in the probable order of creation.
Among Curren's non-fiction creations are many historical works. Because American history had been confusing for Curren as a child, she hoped through her writings to make history more understandable for children. Hear Ye of Boston (1964) and Hear Ye of Philadelphia (1968) depict colonial life in two historically important cities. The collection holds typescripts for both of these titles and various versions of manuscripts for Hear Ye of Philadelphia. To Light a Torch (1966) is a biography of John F. Kennedy for young adult readers. For this title, the collection holds a typescript. The World Builds the Bridge (1970) illustrates the evolution and importance of bridges from early man's use of logs and stones to modern day structures such as the Golden Gate Bridge. The collection holds one page of a manuscript, typescripts, galleys, dummies, and an unbound copy of the book. Curren's non-fiction was not limited to history. I Know a Plumber (1976), one in a series of I Know books, illustrates through drawings and text how household plumbing works.
To make history more enjoyable for children, Curren also wrote historical fiction. For younger readers, she wrote Army of Two (1975). This is the story of two sisters, who during the War of 1812, frightened away the British with only a fife and a drum. The story is based on a true event. A typescript, galleys, a book cover and fan mail are included in the holdings for this title. Pea Patch Island (1975) is also based on an actual event. A ship loaded with peas sinks, and the next summer an island of green peas appears in the river. The collection holds a typescript and a draft of the opening note for this title. Meg: Mystery in Williamsburg (1972), set in both modern and colonial Williamsburg, is a mystery novel for upper elementary grade readers. The collection holds one item of correspondence for this title written under the pseudonym Holly Beth Walker.
Two of Curren's children's novels are represented in the collection. For A Family for Sarah Ann (1962), the collection holds a set of uncorrected proofs. The Fantastic Adventures of Wesley Riggs (1961) is the second novel represented. This work tells the story of a boy who just by thinking can turn himself into a cookie about to be baked or cause a snowstorm to descend upon his house. The collection holds a typescript and reviews.
Curren's work for Golden Press is represented by five titles. Here Comes Sally (ca. 1969) is the story of a elephant who feels useless until the queen needs a ride. For Here Comes Sally, the collection includes a manuscript and a preliminary typescript. The adventures of an apprentice witch are told in Betsy of Strange Lane (ca. 1969). For this title, the collection includes correspondence and author notes. In Who Is Wiggles? (ca. 1953), Donnie visits all the farm animals looking for Wiggles only to discover that Wiggles is a friendly boy who lives on the farm. Galleys and a proof are the collection holdings for this title. The collection holds materials for two Raggedy Ann and Andy books by Curren. For Raggedy Ann and Andy: The Little Gray Kitten (1975), the collection includes an outline and various versions of typescripts. The holdings for Raggedy Ann and Andy Help Santa Claus (1977) include two manuscripts, three typescripts, and galleys.
Curren's other published works represented in the collection are typescripts submitted to My Sunday Reader and Sunday Pix, religious weeklies for children. Also, a typescript for the flap copy for Wishing Pearl and Other Tales of Vietnam (1969) by Jon and Kay Nielsen is held.
Four unpublished titles are included with typescripts for three and a dummy of text for the fourth.
Illustrations for Hear Ye of Boston are housed in the Kurt Werth Papers (DG1040). A dummy, 32 original drawings and sketches, and 24 pieces of art mechanicals for I Know a Plumber are housed in the Frank Aloise Papers (DG0020).
Series and Subseries(1966, 1968, 1971-73, 1977-79)
B. BooksARMY OF TWO (1975) BETSY OF STRANGE LANE (ca. 1953) A FAMILY FOR SARAH ANN (1962) THE FANTASTIC ADVENTURES OF WESLEY RIGGS (1961) HEAR YE OF BOSTON (1964) HEAR YE OF PHILADELPHIA (1968) HERE COMES SALLY (ca. 1969) I KNOW A PLUMBER (1976) MEG: MYSTERY IN WILLIAMSBURG (1972) PEA PATCH ISLAND (1975) RAGGEDY ANN AND ANDY: THE LITTLE GRAY KITTEN (1975) RAGGEDY ANN AND ANDY HELP SANTA CLAUS (1977) TO LIGHT A TORCH: THE JOHN F. KENNEDY STORY (1966) WHO IS WIGGLES? (ca. 1973) THE WORLD BUILDS THE BRIDGE (1970)
C. Other Published WorksMY SUNDAY READER (1963) SUNDAY PIX (1963) WISHING PEARL AND OTHER TALES OF VIETNAM (1969)
D.Unpublished Works"God's House" "God's Song" "This Is a Skyscraper" "This Is Me"
Box/Folder A.Correspondence 1/1 To the de Grummond Collection, 1966, 1968, 1971-73, 1977- 79, 19 items. B.Books ARMY OF TWO by Polly Curren, illustrated by Robert Shore (New York: Scholastic, 1975). 1/2 Correspondence, between Polly Curren and Western Publishing, 1975, 14 items. 1/3 Correspondence, between Polly Curren and the Higham Historical Society, 1972, 1975, 5 items. 1/4 Background research, photographs, photocopies, newspaper articles, and notes, 19 items. 1/5 Typescript, with corrections, titled "Two Girls in the Lighthouse," dated 22 January 1974. 1/6 Galleys, with corrections and page numbers, 12 pp. 1/7 Galleys, handwritten title, 9 pp. 1/8 Book cover 1/9 Fan mail, 2 items. BETSY OF STRANGE LANE by Polly Curren [publication information not available], ca. 1969. 1/10 Correspondence, to Polly Curren from Western Publishing, 1969, 5 items. 1/11 Notes, 2 pp. A FAMILY FOR SARAH ANN by Polly Curren, illustrated by Kelly Oechsli (Indianapolis: Bobbs-Merrill, 1962). 1/12 Correspondence, to Polly Curren from Bobbs-Merrill Company, 1963, 2 items. 1/13 Proofs, uncorrected, dated Fall 1962. THE FANTASTIC ADVENTURES OF WESLEY RIGGS by Polly Curren, illustrated by Kelly Oechsli (Indianapolis: Bobbs-Merrill, 1961). 1/14 Correspondence, to Polly Curren from Bobbs-Merrill Company, 1962, 1 item. 1/15 Typescript, with corrections. 1/16 Reviews, 12 items. 1/17 Reviews, photocopies, 12 pp. HEAR YE OF BOSTON by Polly Curren, illustrated by Kurt Werth (New York: Lothrop, Lee, & Shepard, 1964). 1/18 Correspondence, between Polly Curren and Lothrop, Lee, & Shepard, and from Virginia Haviland, 1962-64, 9 items. 1/19 Notes, 5 pp. 1/20 Typescript, with corrections, 8 pp. 1/21 Typescript, 9 pp. HEAR YE OF PHILADELPHIA by Polly Curren, illustrated by Kurt Werth (New York: Lothrop, Lee, & Shepard, 1968). 2/1 Correspondence, to Polly Curren from Lothrop, Lee, & Shepard, 1967, 5 items. 2/2 Background research, notes. 2/3 Background research, pamphlets, 5 items. 2/4 Manuscripts, preliminary, various pages and versions. 2/5-2/7 Typescripts, 2/5 preliminary, various pages, and versions. 2/6 with corrections, 19 pp. pp. 1-10. with corrections, copy, dated 17 January 1966, pp. 1-11. 2/7 with corrections, 17 pp. with corrections, marked original, 19 pp. revised, copy-edited, dated 30 June 1967, 13 pp. 2/8 Publisher's suggestions, 1 item. HERE COMES SALLY by Polly Curren [publication information not available] ca. 1969. 2/9 Correspondence, between Polly Curren and Western Publishing, 1969, 2 items. 2/10 Manuscript, dated 17 May 1969, 16 pp. 2/11 Typescript, preliminary, titled "Sally and the Queen," 3 pp. I KNOW A PLUMBER by Polly Curren, illustrated by Frank Aloise (New York: Putnam, 1976). 2/13 Correspondence, between Polly Curren and Putnam, 1973-76, 5 items. 2/14 Background research, 12 items. 2/15 Manuscript, marked 1st rough draft. 2/16 Typescript, with corrections, 17 pp. 2/17 Typescript, marked final draft, 16 pp. 2/18 Correction sheet for galley. 2/19 Book cover. 2/20 Book cover, copy. MEG: MYSTERY IN WILLIAMSBURG by Holly Beth Walker [pseudonym for Polly Curren], illustrated by Cliff Schule (Racine, Wisconsin: Whitman, 1972). 3/1 Correspondence, to Polly Curren from Harvey House, 1969, 1 item. PEA PATCH ISLAND by Polly Curren, illustrated by Ronald Himler (Racine, Wisconsin: Golden Press, 1975). 3/2 Correspondence, between Polly Curren and Western Publishing, 1973, 4 items. 3/3 Correspondence, between Polly Curren and the Historical Society of Delaware, 1970, 2 items. 3/4 Notes, 6 items. 3/5 Typescript, titled "Old Pea Patch Island." 3/6 Opening note for book, with corrections. RAGGEDY ANN AND ANDY: THE LITTLE GRAY KITTEN by Polly Curren, illustrated by June Goldsborough (Racine, Wisconsin: Golden Press, 1975). 3/7 Correspondence, between Polly Curren and Western Publishing, 1974-75, 4 items. 3/8 Outline, 2 pp. 3/9 Typescript, incomplete, pp. 2-3. Typescript, with corrections, pp. 1-7. Typescript, with corrections, "marked working script No. 2," pp. 1-6. Typescript, with corrections, pp. 1-6. Typescript, copy, marked "copy of book as sent to typesetter." RAGGEDY ANN AND ANDY HELP SANTA CLAUS by Polly Curren, illustrated by June Goldsborough (Racine, Wisconsin: Golden Press, 1977). 3/10 Correspondence, to Polly Curren from Western Publishing, 1976, 1 item. 3/11 Manuscript, marked "1st working draft," 12 pp. 3/12 Manuscript, marked "2nd idea," 6 pp. 3/13 Typescript, with corrections, titled "Raggedy Ann and Andy Christmas Story No. 2," 6 pp. Typescript, with corrections, 9 pp. Typescript, with corrections, dated 29 July 1976, 7 pp. 3/14 Galleys, copy. TO LIGHT A TORCH: THE JOHN F. KENNEDY STORY by Polly Curren Fedosiuk, illustrated by Hal MacIntosh (New York: Guild Press, 1966). 3/15 Background research, pamphlet, 1 item. 3/16 Background research, notes, 7 pp. 3/17 Typescript, pp. 1-126. WHO IS WIGGLES? by Polly Curren [publication information not available], ca. 1953. 3/18 Correspondence, to Polly Curren from Western Publishing, 1953, 1 item. 3/19 Galleys, dated 18 July 1952. 3/20 Proof, color. THE WORLD BUILDS THE BRIDGE by Polly Curren, illustrated by Gordon Laite (Irvington-on-Hudson, New York: Harvey House, 1970). 3/21 Correspondence, between Polly Curren and Harvey House, 1968-69, 63 items. 3/22 Correspondence, background research, 1969, 5 items. 4/1 Background research, articles, clippings, photographs, and photocopies, 24 items. 4/2 Notes, 36 pp. 4/3 Manuscript, 1 p. 4/4 Typescript, with corrections, marked "old working copy," pp. 1-14. Typescript, with corrections, pp.1-25 (missing p. 9). 4/5 Typescript, map pages, with corrections, various versions, 4 items. 4/6 Typescript, end pages, with corrections, 1 p. 4/7 Corrections, from Polly Curren to publisher, 3 pp. 4/8 Blurb copy, 1 p. 4/9 Biography, 1 p. 4/10 Galleys, dated 27 February 1969. 4/11 Dummy, partial, graphite and ink. 4/12 Dummy, combination of graphite, ink, crayon, and watercolor. 4/13 Unbound copy of book. C.Other Published Works MY SUNDAY READER and SUNDAY PIX [David C. Cook Publication] 4/14 Correspondence, between Polly Curren and David C. Cook Publishing, 1963, 3 items. 4/15 Instructions for submitting copy to MY SUNDAY READER, 10 pp. Instructions for submitting copy to SUNDAY PIX, 3 pp. 4/16 Typescript, titled "Here at Home," pp. 1-5. Typescript,titled "Here Comes the Ice Cream Man," pp. 1-7. WISHING PEARL AND OTHER TALES OF VIETNAM by Jon & Kay Nielsen, translated by Lam Chan Quan (Irvington-on-Hudson, New York: Harvey House, 1969). [Dust jacket flap copy written by Polly Curren]. 4/17 Correspondence, to Polly Curren from Harvey House, 1969, 2 items. Typescript, flap copy, 3 pp. D.Unpublished Materials "God's House" by Polly Curren. 4/18 Dummy, text only. "God's Song" by Polly Curren. 4/19 Typescript, 3 pp. "This Is a Skyscraper" by Polly Curren. 4/20 Correspondence, to Polly Curren from Western Publishing, 1953-54, 3 items. Typescript, with correction sheet, 7 pp. "This Is Me" by Polly Curren. 4/21 Typescript, with corrections, pp. 1-5.
Processed: April 29, 1996
Biographical Sketch | Scope & Content | Related Collections | Series & Subseries | Box Inventory| [Return to top]
The following issues of periodicals have been placed in the published book section of the de Grummond Collection:
MY SUNDAY READER August 18, 1963 August 25, 1963 December 22, 1963 SUNDAY PIX August 11, 1963 August 18, 1963 August 25, 1963 December 22, 1963
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