de Grummond Collection

McCain Library and Archives
University Libraries
University of Southern Mississippi


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

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


Material received from Scarry between 1974 and 1982.


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

Richard Scarry was born on June 5, 1919 in Boston, Massachusetts. He received training at the Boston Museum School, Archipenko Art School (Woodstock, New York), and Eliot O'Hara Watercolor School (Gooserocks Beach, Maine). He spent five years (1941-1946) in the United States Army drawing maps and designing graphics. In the late 1940s Scarry moved to New York City where he met and married Patricia Murphy, author of children's books. At this time he intended to pursue a career in commercial art, but instead he illustrated his first children's book for Golden Press and was promised a steady flow of work. After illustrating books written by other people for eleven years, Scarry tried his hand at writing his own stories. His first big commercial success came in 1963 with Richard Scarry's Best Word Book Ever. In 1969, Scarry, his wife Patricia and their son, also an author/illustrator of children's books, moved to Switzerland.

Working primarily in full color, Scarry has written and illustrated more than 100 books for children, as well as a book of poetry. He has also illustrated over 30 books written by other authors. Most of Scarry's characters are "anthropomorphic," that is, they are animals that look and act like human beings. His books enjoy great mass market appeal and popularity. He was awarded the Edgar Allan Poe Special Award from the Mystery Writers of America in 1976 for his book The Great Steamboat Mystery.


Scope and Content

The collection contains correspondence from Scarry to the de Grummond Collection, 1974 and 1982, and pencil illustrations from three books published during the same years. The folders are arranged alphabetically by title. For each title, the drawings are in the order in which they appear in the book.

In Busy Houses (1981), Lowly Worm drives his applecar around Busytown observing activities in the firehouse, school, supermarket and other buildings. For this title, the collection includes twelve graphite illustrations. For Cars and Trucks and Things that Go (1974), a book about the Pig family and the various kinds of vehicles they encounter on their way to the beach, the collection contains one graphite illustration. Four Busy Word Books (1982) is actually four books in one. For "Daddy Cat's Busy Day," "Huckle's Busy Day," and "Sally and Mummy Cat's Busy Day," there are two sets of graphite illustrations, one with text and one without. For "Lowly Worm's Busy A. B. C." the collection has graphite illustrations. The collection has a graphite illustration for the cover or title page of Four Busy Word Books. In the correspondence, Scarry says that final art is traced from these sketches onto frosted acetate.

Related Collection


Series and Subseries

A. Correspondence (1974-1982)

B. Books (1974-1982)

Box Inventory


A. Correspondence

1/1 To the de Grummond Collection, 1974 and 1982, 2 items.

B. Books

BUSY HOUSES by Richard Scarry (New York: Random House, 1981). 1/2 Illustrations, graphite and marker, pp. 2-23 and cover, 12 items. CARS AND TRUCKS AND THINGS THAT GO by Richard Scarry (New York: Golden, 1974). 1/3 Illustration, graphite, for cover. FOUR BUSY WORD BOOKS by Richard Scarry (New York: Random House, 1982). 1/4 Illustration, graphite, cover or title page. DADDY CAT'S BUSY DAY 1/5 Illustrations, graphite, pp. 1-15, 2 items. Illustrations with text, graphite, pp. 1-15, 2 items. HUCKLE'S BUSY DAY 1/6 Illustrations, graphite, pp. 1-15, 2 items. Illustrations with text, graphite, pp. 1-15, 2 items. LOWLY WORM'S BUSY A. B. C. 1/7 Illustrations with text, graphite, pp. 1-7. SALLY AND MUMMY CAT'S BUSY DAY 1/8 Illustrations, graphite, pp. 1-15, 2 items. Illustrations with text, graphite, pp. 1-15, 2 items.

Processed: March 1991
Revised: July 2001

Biographical Sketch | Scope & Content | Related Collections | Series & Subseries | Box Inventory
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The de Grummond Children's Literature Collection
Box 5148
Hattiesburg, MS 39406
(601) 266-4349
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