de Grummond Collection

McCain Library and Archives
University Libraries
University of Southern Mississippi


Collection Number
Collection Dates
Collection Volume
1.20 cu.ft. (1 box)

Biographical Sketch | Scope & Content | Related Collections | Series & Subseries | Box Inventory


Materials received from Ed Emberley between 1967 and 1983.


Non-circulating; available for research.


This 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.

Biographical Sketch

Edward Randolph Emberley was born in Malden, Massachusetts on October 19, 1931, though he was raised in Cambridge. Following high school, with the encouragement and support of his parents and high school teachers he enrolled in the Massachusetts School of Art from which he received his Bachelor of Fine Arts degree in painting and illustration. Emberley served in the United States Army for two years and then completed his formal art training at the Rhode Island School of Design. Emberley spent two years working as a pasteup artist and cartoonist for a Boston direct mail firm but has been a freelance illustrator since 1960. His first book, The Wing on a Flea (1961), was an ALA Notable and made the New York Times list of best illustrated books for that year. Punch and Judy: a Play for Puppets (1965) also made the New York Times Best Illustrated list. One Wide River to Cross (1966), authored by Emberley's wife Barbara, was the sole Caldecott Honor book for 1967; this title also received an Art Books for Children Citation in 1973. Ladybug, Ladybug, Fly Away Home (1967) won the New Jersey Institute of Technology New Jersey Authors Award for science in 1968. Barbara Emberley again collaborated with her husband for Drummer Hoff (1967), which won both the 1968 Caldecott Medal and a 1968 Lewis Carroll Shelf Award.

In addition to illustrating science books and story books, Emberley has also written and illustrated a number of drawing books for children. Among these are Ed Emberley's Drawing Book of Animals(1969), Ed Emberley's Drawing Book: Make a World (1972), and Ed Emberley's Great Thumbprint Drawing Book (1977).

Ed and Barbara Emberley live in a three hundred-year-old Colonial saltbox home in Ipswich, Massachusetts, where they enjoy printing limited editions of children's books with their private hand press, "Bird in the Bush."


Scope and Content

This collection contains autobiographical and biographical information about Ed Emberley, correspondence from Emberley to the de Grummond Collection, critical reviews and newspaper articles about Emberley, a copy of Emberley's Caldecott Award acceptance speech, and material related to the Christmas card Emberley designed for the de Grummond Collection in 1983. In addition, the collection contains material related to eight of Emberley's published books and three of his unpublished books. Included in the papers are two original sketches drawn by Emberley in New Orleans and twenty-seven "thumbprint" sketches created by him for the 1982 Children's Book Festival at the University of Southern Mississippi.

The materials related to Emberley's published works are arranged alphabetically by book title, and within each title according to the probable order in which the materials were created. A Birthday Wish (1977) is a picture book relating how a mouse's birthday wish comes true through an unusual chain of events. For this title the collection has one sheet of watercolor panel illustrations which were not used for the final book. For The Bottom of the Sea (1966), a science book illustrated by Emberley early in his career, holdings include storyboards, sketches, a final proof, and a dust jacket.

Drummer Hoff (1967), the Caldecott winner for 1968, is represented by sketches; an original woodblock print, not used in the published book, bearing the Bird in the Bush imprint of Emberley's private press, and dust jackets for the first and third printings. For Ed Emberley's ABC (1978), an imaginative alphabet book, the collection contains a poster-sized proof of the final panel illustrating the letter "B". Krispin's Fair (1976), a story about Prince Krispin and his haughty cousin Prince Roderick at a country fair, is represented by two sketches, one of which is a prototype for the jacket cover.

Holdings for Ladybug, Ladybug, Fly Away Home (1967), an award-winning science book in the same series as The Bottom of the Sea, consist of numerous sketches. Ed Emberley's Drawing Book: Make a World (1972), the second in Emberley's series of drawing books for children, teaches aspiring young artists to draw by combining a series of simple lines and shapes into pictures of objects. For this title the collection contains a promotional item. Emberley's colorful illustrations are a perfect complement to Ian Serraillier's spooky poem Suppose You Met a Witch (1973), for which the collection holds an unpublished illustration for the title page of the book.

Ed Emberley designed a Christmas card for the de Grummond collection in 1983; the generation of this card is represented in the collection by color separations, specification sheets, and a finished card.

The Emberley Papers also contain material for three books which remain unpublished. The Fisherman and His Wife, based on a Brothers Grimm tale, is represented by twelve sketches. The collection holds both storyboards and numerous sketches for The Gallant Tailor, which was also to have been an adaptation of a Grimm fairy tale, and for There Was An Old Lady, based on a popular children's rhyme.

Also included in the collection are two sketches drawn by Emberley in New Orleans and twenty-seven "thumbprint" sketches drawn by him for the 1982 Children's Book Festival held at the University of Southern Mississippi.

Series and Subseries

A. Personal Material (1968-1979, undated)

B. Correspondence (1967, 1983, undated)

C. Books (1966-1978)

D. Christmas Card (1983)

E. Unpublished Material (undated)

F. Miscellaneous (1972, 1982, undated)

Box Inventory


A. Personal Material

    1/1       Autobiographical synopsis and personal information, undated, 2 pp.

              List of children's books by Emberley, ca. 1969, 1 p.

              List of public presentations Emberley performs, undated,  1 p.

              "Caldecott Award Acceptance," speech reprinted in Horn Book, Aug.
              1968, pp. 399-402.

              Magazine article, "Ed Emberley," by Barbara Emberley (Horn Book, Aug.
              1968, pp. 403-406).

              Newspaper articles and reviews, 1972, 1976, 1978-79, 4 items.

              Photographs of Ed Emberley and children at Paul Habans Elementary
              School, N[ew] O[rleans, Louisiana], 2 November 1972, 14 items.


B. Correspondence

    1/2       To the de Grummond Collection, 1967, 1983, undated, 9 items.


C. Books

A BIRTHDAY WISH by Ed Emberley (Boston: Little, Brown, 1977).

    1/3       Panel illustrations, watercolor, unpublished, and note, 2 items.

    THE BOTTOM OF THE SEA by Augusta Goldin, illustrated by Ed Emberley (New York: Crowell, 1966).

    1/4       Storyboards, 4 items.

              Sketches, marker, pp. 32, 35, 2 items.

              Final proof.

              Dust jacket.

    DRUMMER HOFF, adapted by Barbara Emberley, illustrated by Ed Emberley (Englewood Cliffs, NJ: Prentice-Hall, 1967).

    1/5       Sketches, marker, unpublished, 4 items.

              Original woodblock print, unpublished.

              Dust jackets, first and third printings.

    ED EMBERLEY'S ABC by Edward R. Emberley (Boston: Little, Brown, 1978).

    1/6       Proof, illustration for letter "B", p. [3].

    KRISPIN'S FAIR by John G. Keller, illustrated by Ed Emberley (Boston:  Little, Brown, 1976).

    1/7       Sketches, graphite, 2 items.

    LADYBUG, LADYBUG, FLY AWAY HOME by Judy Hawes,illustrated by Ed Emberley (New York:  Crowell, 1967).

    1/8       Sketches, annotated, graphite and marker, pp. 3, 5, 11-12, 
              unidentified, 57 items.

    ED EMBERLEY'S DRAWING BOOK:  MAKE A WORLD by Ed Emberley (Boston:  Little, Brown, 1972).

    1/9       Promotional item.

    SUPPOSE YOU MET A WITCH by Ian Serraillier, illustrated by Ed Emberley (Boston:  Little, Brown, 1973).

    1/10      Illustration, marker, alternate title page.


D. Christmas Card

    1/11      Color separation and specification sheets for de Grummond Christmas
              card, 4 items.

              De Grummond Collection Christmas card, 1983.


E. Unpublished Material


    1/12      Sketches, marker, 12 items.


    1/13      Storyboards, 10 items.

              Sketches, annotated, charcoal and marker, 130 items.

              Illustrations, marker, with text, 8 items.


    1/14      Storyboards, 2 items.

              Sketches, graphite and marker, 29 items.


F. Miscellaneous

    1/15      Sketches drawn in New Orleans, November, 1972, undated,  
              2 items. [one item stored separately]

    1/16-1/20 "Thumbprint" sketches from 1982 Children's Book Festival, 27 items.
              [stored separately]

Processed: October 1991
Revised: June 5, 2001

Biographical Sketch | Scope & Content | Related Collections | Series & Subseries | Box Inventory
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The de Grummond Children's Literature Collection

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