de Grummond Collection

McCain Library and Archives
University Libraries
University of Southern Mississippi



PETER SPIER PAPERS

Collection Number
Collection Dates
Collection Volume
DG0925
1961-1991
2.40 cu.ft. (4 boxes)

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

Provenance

Materials received from Peter Spier between 1974 and 1991.

Restrictions

Non-circulating; available for research.

Copyright

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

Peter Spier was born June 6, 1927 in Amsterdam, The Netherlands. His father was a journalist and illustrator who worked at home, which influenced Spier to draw. Spier grew up in Broek-in-Waterland, which Americans know as the birthplace of Hans Brinker. He and his brother and sister attended school in Amsterdam, which involved travel by train, boat, the city tram, and foot. Weekends were spent sailing.

Deciding at age eighteen to make art his career, Spier attended the Rijksacademie, an art school in Amsterdam, from 1945-1947. He soon was drafted and served as an officer in the Royal Netherlands Navy from 1947-1951 in the West Indies and South America. Spier worked for Elseviers Weekly, the largest Dutch weekly newspaper, and was based in Paris and later in Houston, Texas.

Later Spier moved to New York where he began illustrating children's books. The first was Cocoa by Margaret G. Otto in 1953. Since then he has illustrated almost 150 books for other authors. In 1961 he wrote and illustrated The Fox Went Out on a Chilly Night. Spier has written and illustrated more than fourteen books of his own for children. Spier and his wife, Kathryn Pallister, live on Long Island where he continues to write and, in his spare time, sails and builds model ships.

During the course of his career Spier received the Caldecott Honor Award in 1962 for The Fox Went Out on a Chilly Night, the Boston Globe Horn Book (illustration) Award in 1967 for London Bridge Is Falling Down, and the Christopher Award in 1971 for The Erie Canal. He also received the Caldecott Medal, the Lewis Carroll Shelf Award, and the Christopher Award in 1978 for Noah's Ark. He received the Christopher Award again in 1981 for People. In 1984, the University of Southern Mississippi awarded him the Silver Medallion.

Sources:


Scope and Content

The collection contains correspondence, a sketch for the Silver Medallion award, as well as original material for thirteen published books and a de Grummond Collection Christmas card. Correspondence is grouped first by its relationship to Spier, then chronologically. Book titles are arranged alphabetically, with material for each title arranged in the probable order of creation.

The bulk of material in this collection relates to The Village Books (1981), which present descriptions and daily activities of businesses and facilities found in most towns. The titles Bill's Service Station, Firehouse, Food Market, My School, The Pet Store, and The Toy Shop are represented by dummies, notes, typescripts, galleys, illustrations, color separations, and progressive stages of proofs. Similarly, the 4 Board Books (1988), provide information about automobiles, trucks, and fire engines. Published concurrently, this title is represented only by dummies of the four covers.

In Hurrah, We're Outward Bound! (1968), using the sea chanties and rhymes of Mother Goose, Spier takes readers on sea voyages to many places. For this title the collection contains three ink and watercolor illustrations. Rain (1982), about two children playing on a rainy day, is a wordless book for which there is a dust jacket proof. For The Book of Jonah (1985), the biblical story of Jonah, the collection contains proofs for the dust jacket illustration.

In Island City: Adventures in Old New York (1961), Davis describes the settlement and growth of Old New York City. For this title the collection includes an ink and watercolor illustration for the dust jacket. In The Erie Canal (1970) Spier's illustrations accompany lyrics to the folk song, "Low Bridge! Everybody Down," by Thomas S. Allen and includes musical notation. For this title the collection has an ink and watercolor illustration.

For The Star-Spangled Banner (1973), which illustrates three verses of the national anthem with music included and We the People: The Constitution of the United States of America, which includes text from the Constitution, there are dust jacket proofs only.



Related Collection

NONE



Series and Subseries


A. Correspondence (1978-1991 and undated)

B. Award (1984)

C. Books (1961-1988)

  • THE BOOK OF JONAH (1985)
  • ERIE CANAL (1970)
  • 4 BOARD BOOKS (1988)
  • BIG TRUCKS, LITTLE TRUCKS
  • FAST CARS, SLOW CARS
  • HERE COME THE FIRE TRUCKS
  • TRUCKS THAT DIG AND DUMP
  • HURRAH, WE'RE OUTWARD BOUND! (1968)
  • ISLAND CITY: ADVENTURES IN OLD NEW YORK (1961)
  • RAIN (1982)
  • STAR-SPANGLED BANNER (1973)
  • VILLAGE BOOKS (1981)
  • BILL'S SERVICE STATION
  • FIREHOUSE
  • FOOD MARKET
  • MY SCHOOL
  • THE PET STORE
  • THE TOY SHOP
  • WE THE PEOPLE: THE CONSTITUTION OF THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA (1987)

    D. Christmas Card (1978)


    Box Inventory


        Box/Folder
    

    A. Correspondence

    1/1 To de Grummond Collection, 1984 and 1991, 3 items. To and from publishers and others, 1978-1983 and undated, 32 items. 1/2 From child fans, undated, 27 items. 1/3 From child fans, undated, 40 items.

    B. Awards

    1/4 Sketch, graphite, University of Southern Mississippi Silver Medallion, 1984.

    C. Books

    THE BOOK OF JONAH retold and illustrated by Peter Spier (Garden City, NY: Doubleday, 1985). 1/5 Proofs, dust jacket, 2 items. [stored separately] ERIE CANAL by Peter Spier (Garden City, NY: Doubleday, 1970). 1/6 Illustration, ink and watercolor, pp. 26-27. 4 BOARD BOOKS by Peter Spier (New York: Random House, 1988). BIG TRUCKS, LITTLE TRUCKS FAST CARS, SLOW CARS HERE COME THE FIRE TRUCKS TRUCKS THAT DIG AND DUMP

    1/7 Proofs, covers only, 4 items. HURRAH, WE'RE OUTWARD BOUND! Mother Goose rhymes, illustrated by Peter Spier (Garden City, NY: Doubleday, 1968). 1/8 Illustrations, ink and watercolor, pp. 12-13, 30-31, 36-37. ISLAND CITY: ADVENTURES IN OLD NEW YORK by Lavinia Davis, illustrated by Peter Spier (Garden City, NY: Doubleday, 1961). 1/9 Illustration, ink and watercolor, dust jacket. RAIN by Peter Spier (Garden City, NY: Doubleday, 1982). 1/10 Proof, dust jacket. THE STAR-SPANGLED BANNER by Francis Scott Key, illustrated by Peter Spier (Garden City, NY: Doubleday, 1973). 1/11 Proof, dust jacket. Press sheet. [stored separately] VILLAGE BOOKS SERIES by Peter Spier (Garden City, NY: Doubleday, 1981). 1/12 Notes and sketches, graphite, ink, and crayon, 37 items. 1/13 Copyright page material, 8 items. Illustrations, promotional, watercolor, 3 items. Material regarding non-English publications, 16 items. BILL'S SERVICE STATION

    1/14 Dummy, graphite and watercolor, cover only. Dummy, blank, graphite and watercolor. Notes, 2 pp. Dummy, edited, graphite and ink. Dummy, photocopy, edited, 3 versions. 1/15 Typescript, edited and marked for typesetter, 1 item. Galleys, edited, 2 pp., 2 versions. Galleys, revised, 4 pp. Type samples, 3 items. Sketches, graphite, 19 items. Illustrations, graphite, pp. 1-10 and cover. 1/16 Specification sheets, 2 items. Film Negative, text, pp. 3-4. Paste-ups, positive and negative photocopies, pp. 1-10, 2 copies. 1/17 Color separations, pp. 1-10 and cover. FIREHOUSE

    2/1 Dummy, graphite and watercolor, cover only. Sketches, graphite, 25 items. Dummy, graphite and watercolor. 2/2 Dummy, photocopy, edited, 2 versions. Dummy, color photocopy. Typescript, 1 item. Typescript, edited and marked for typesetter, 1 item. Note to typesetter, 1 item. Galleys, 4 items. Type samples, 5 items. 2/3 Illustrations, graphite, pp. 1-12 and cover. Specification sheets, 3 items. 2/4 Paste-ups, positive and negative photocopies, pp. 1-12, 2 copies. 2/5 Color separations, pp. 1-12 and cover. FOOD MARKET

    2/6 Dummy, blank, graphite and watercolor. Dummy, graphite and ink. Dummy, photocopy, edited, 3 copies. Typescript, edited and marked for typesetter, 1 item. Galleys, 5 items. Type samples and note, 8 items. 2/7 Sketches and notes, graphite, 16 items. Illustrations, graphite, pp. 1-12 and cover. 2/8 Paste-ups, positive and negative photocopies, pp. 1-12 and cover. Specification sheets, 3 items. 2/9 Color separations, pp. 1-12 and cover. Proofs, pp. 3-4, 7-8, 9-10, and 11-12. MY SCHOOL

    3/1 Dummy, blank, graphite, watercolor, and ink. Dummy, color photocopy, cover only. Dummy, graphite and ink. Dummy, photocopies, edited, 3 copies. Typescript, edited and marked for typesetter, 1 item. Galleys, 6 items. Type samples, 2 items. 3/2 Sketches, graphite, 8 items. Illustrations, graphite, pp. 1-12 and cover. 3/3 Paste-ups, positive and negative photocopies, pp. 1-12 and cover. Specification sheets, 2 items. 3/4 Color separations, pp. 1-12 and cover. 3/5 Dummy with color proofs, incomplete. THE PET STORE

    3/6 Dummy, blank, graphite and watercolor. Manuscript notes with sketches, 4 items. Dummy, edited, graphite and ink. Dummy, photocopy, edited. Typescript, edited and marked for typesetter, 1 item. Galleys, 6 items. Type samples, 3 items. 3/7 Sketches, graphite, ink, and crayon, 10 items. Illustrations, graphite, pp. 1-12 and cover. 3/8 Paste-ups, positive and negative photocopies, pp. 1-12 and cover. Specification sheets, 2 items. 3/9 Color separations, pp. 1-12 and cover. THE TOY SHOP 4/1 Dummy, graphite and watercolor, cover only. Dummy, blank, graphite and watercolor. Dummy, edited, graphite, ink, and crayon. Dummy, photocopy, edited. 4/2 Typescript, edited and marked for typesetter, 1 item. Galleys, 3 items. Type samples, 3 items. Sketches, graphite and crayon, 14 items. Illustrations, graphite, pp. 1-12 and cover. 4/3 Paste-ups, positive and negative photocopies, pp. 1-12 and cover, 2 copies. Specification sheets, 2 items. 4/4 Color separations, pp. 1-12 and cover. WE THE PEOPLE: THE CONSTITUTION OF THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA by Peter Spier (Garden City, NY: Doubleday, 1987). 4/5 Proof, dust jacket. [stored separately]

    D. Christmas Card

    4/6 Christmas card designed for the de Grummond Collection, 3 items.

    Processed: September 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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