de Grummond Collection

McCain Library and Archives
University Libraries
University of Southern Mississippi


Collection Number
Collection Dates
Collection Volume
2.8 cu.ft. (3 boxes + 1
mapcase drawer)

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


Material received from Lynd Ward between 1967 and 1973. Painting received from the Lannan Foundation in 1999.


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

Lynd Ward was born in Chicago, Illinois on June 26, 1905. He spent his early childhood in the stockyard area where his father was a Methodist minister who participated in the movement led by Jane Addams to bring better conditions to the melting pot. Moving from Oak Park and Evanston, Illinois to Newton Center, Massachusetts and Englewood, New Jersey, Ward's family was always close to the people "back of the yards."

Ward was an unhealthy baby. Choosing an unusual treatment, his parents moved the whole family to a cabin in the Canadian wilderness and remained there until the first snow fell. When they returned to Chicago, the young Ward was in good health. These two experiences gave Ward a deep respect for the dignity of the human spirit and a bond with the strength of the wilderness. His interest in books was owed in part to his father's forbidding him to read the funny papers.

In 1926 Ward graduated from Columbia University with a major in fine arts. While studying at the Teacher's College there he chose books, illustrating, and graphic arts as his areas of interest. Ward met his future wife, May McNeer, while attending college. They married graduation week and traveled to Leipzig, Germany where he studied at the National Academy for Graphic Arts from 1926 to 1927.

Ward's first book, God's Man: A Novel in Woodcuts (1929), was a wordless book. In the 1930s he created five more books in this manner, establishing his reputation as a wood engraver although he also worked in watercolor, oil, lithography, mezzotint, and in color as well as black and white. As primarily a graphic artist, Ward was constantly thinking of what would print well.

In 1952 Ward created The Biggest Bear, which won the Caldecott Medal. This was one of three books that he both wrote and illustrated for children. He illustrated well over one hundred books for others, notable among them Ann Nolan Clark's Santiago (1955), in which he drew upon experiences from a year spent in Mexico, and Abraham Lincoln written by McNeer in 1957. He continued working until his death in 1985.

Ward illustrated six Newbery Honor Medal books and two Newbery Medal books. He won the Carteret Book Club award for book illustration (1942), the Library of Congress Award for wood engraving (1948), National Academy of Design Print Award (1949), and the Caldecott Medal (1953) for The Biggest Bear. He won the Lewis Carroll Shelf Award in 1973, the New York Times Best Illustrated Award in 1973, and the Children's Book Showcase Award in 1974, all for The Silver Pony. He also received the Regina Award in 1975.


Scope and Content

The collection contains correspondence to the de Grummond Collection, photographs of Ward, awards material, material for six books, a chapbook, and original greeting cards. Book titles are arranged alphabetically; items within each title are arranged in the probable order of creation.

The Silver Pony: A Story in Pictures (1973), a wordless picture book, is about a boy and his silver winged pony. The collection contains one illustration for this book. Hi Tom (1962) by Ward's daughter, Nanda Ward, and illustrated by Ward is the story of a boy who discovers his echo and befriends a hermit. The collection includes two dummies and proofs for this title. The Treasure of Topo-El-Bampo (1972) is the story of two burros sold to the slave-driving owners of the silver mine who eventually return to save their village from starvation. For this title the collection holds a dummy, illustrations, and color separations.

America's Robert E. Lee (1951), written by Henry Steele Commager and illustrated by Ward, is a biography of the Civil War general. America's Mark Twain (1962), a brief biography, was written by McNeer and illustrated by Ward. For these titles the collection holds several illustrations. For The Story of George Washington (1973), another biography written by McNeer and illustrated by Ward, the collection contains several proofs.

Also included in the collection are a chapbook (1963) entitled "As Mark Twain Says," which includes drawings from America's Mark Twain, as well as greeting cards designed by McNeer and Ward.

Related Collection

Related materials may be found in the collections of May McNeer (DG0651), Scott O'Dell (DG0743), and Helen Masten (DG0677).

Series and Subseries

A. Personal Materials (1967-1974, undated)

B. Books (1951-1973)

C. Miscellaneous Published Works (1963, 1974, and undated)

Box Inventory


A. Personal Materials

1/1 Correspondence, 1967-1974, 11 items. 1/2 Photographs, 1973 and undated, 3 items. 1/3 Awards and Honors, 1973-1974, 7 items.

B. Books

AMERICA'S MARK TWAIN by May McNeer, illustrated by Lynd Ward (Boston: Houghton Mifflin, 1962). 1/4 - 6 Illustrations, oil, 1/4 pp. 48, 58, and 59; 1/5 pp. 61, 62, and 63; 1/6 pp. 64, 65, and 66. AMERICA'S ROBERT E. LEE by Henry Steele Commager and Lynd Ward (Boston: Houghton Mifflin, 1951). 1/7 - 10 Illustration, oil, 1/7 title page, pp. 24-25; [stored separately] 1/8 pp. 29, 37; 1/9 p. 53; 1/10 p. 97, 104-105. HI TOM by Nanda Ward, pictures by Lynd Ward (New York: Hastings House, 1962). 2/1 Dummy with text paste-ups, ink. 2/2 Dummy with text paste-ups, graphite, watercolor, and marker. Proofs, pp. 13, 19, 20, 29, and 30, 2 items. THE SILVER PONY: A STORY IN PICTURES by Lynd Ward (Boston: Houghton Mifflin, 1973). 2/3 Dummy with text paste-ups, ink. THE STORY OF GEORGE WASHINGTON by May McNeer, pictures by Lynd Ward (Nashville: Abingdon, 1973). 2/4 Proofs, pp. 11, 14-15, 19, 25, 31, 34-35, and dust jacket. THE TREASURE OF TOPO-EL-BAMPO by Scott O'Dell, illustrated by Lynd Ward (Boston: Houghton Mifflin, 1972). 2/5 Dummy, crayon, watercolor, and ink. 2/6 Illustrations, oil, pp. 1 and 5. 2/7-3/5 Color separations, 2/7 pp. 2-3, 6-7, 8, 9; 2/8 pp. 11, 12-13, 14-15, 16-17; 2/9 pp. 18, 19, 21, 22; 3/1 pp. 23, 24-25, 26, 27; 3/2 pp. 28, 29, 31, 32; 3/3 pp. 33, 35, 36, 37; 3/4 pp. 38, 39, 40-41, 42; 3/5 pp. 45, 46, 47, 48, and dust jacket.

C. Miscellaneous Published Works

3/6 Chapbook, "As Mark Twain Says" by May McNeer and Lynd Ward, 1963, 16 pp. Greeting Cards, 1963, 1974, and undated, 5 items.

Processed: October 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

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