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Jean Charlot Papers

Identifier: DG0175

Scope and Contents

The collection is arranged in four series: correspondence, book materials, greeting cards, and unidentified materials. The correspondence consists of photocopies of seven letters and cards sent to the de Grummond Collection from Jean and Zohmah Charlot, mainly concerning contributions to the collection. The greeting cards are, with one exception, related to Christmas; all feature illustrations by Charlot. Book materials have been arranged alphabetically by book title and within each title according to the probable order in which they were created. Completely unidentified at present are four color separations which may or may not be related to the same book.

Kittens, Cubs and Babies (1959) is an elementary-level book that tells how baby animals and people grow up. For this title, which was designed by Charlot, the collection holds the complete set of color separations. There is also a complete set of color separations for Our Lady of Guadalupe (1955), which tells of the miracle responsible for the building of a church in Spanish colonial Mexico. Secret of the Andes (1952) relates the adventures of an Inca boy who herds llamas in a hidden valley deep in the mountains of Peru. For this title the collection holds three color sketches, a complete set of color separations, and negative proofs of the dust jacket. The Timid Ghost (1966), also designed by Charlot, tells how the restless spirit of a Mexican prospector tries to find a person worthy to inherit his secret hoard of gold. For this title the collection holds a complete set of pencil sketches, text paste-ups, color separations, galleys, designer's notes and specification sheets.


  • 1952-1977

Conditions Governing Access

Noncirculating; Available for research

Conditions Governing Use

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.

Biographical / Historical

Jean Charlot, author, artist and playwright, was born in Paris, France on February 7, 1898. His training as an artist took place in Mexico, where he worked as a staff artist for the Carnegie Archaeological expedition in Yucatan from 1926 to 1930. While living in Mexico, Charlot became caught up in the mural renaissance taking place in that country and he was employed by the Mexican government to paint murals on the walls of public buildings in Mexico City. Later he received a Guggenheim Fellowship to write on the mural movement in Mexico.

Charlot left Mexico in 1929 and went to the United States. He joined the faculty of the Art Students' League in New York City, where he taught from 1931 to 1941, then served as artist-in-residence for four years at the University of Georgia. In 1947 Charlot became director of the Colorado Springs Fine Arts Center, a post he held until 1949 when he accepted a professorial chair at the University of Hawaii. Charlot retired from his position as Senior Professor of Art in 1966.

Charlot wrote numerous art books during his career and also illustrated titles for children and adults. Among the children's books he illustrated were two Newbery Medal winners: Ann Nolan Clark's Secret of the Andes (1952) and Joseph Krumgold's . . . and Now Miguel (1953). The Timid Ghost (1966) and Kittens, Cubs, and Babies(1959), two titles represented in the collection, were designed by Charlot. A Child's Good Night Book (1943) and When Will the World Be Mine? The Story of a Snowshoe Rabbit (1953) were both Caldecott honor books. Jean Charlot died on March 20, 1979 in Honolulu, Hawaii. He was survived by his wife Zohmah, whom he had married in 1939, and his children Ann, John, Martin, and Francis. Martin Charlot also became an illustrator and has had numerous books for children published, including Once Upon a Fishhook (1971) and Sunnyside Up (1972).


Illustrators of Children's Books: 1957-1966, p. 93.

More Junior Authors, p. 43.

Something About the Author, vol. 8, pp. 22-24; vol. 31, p. 48; vol. 64, pp. 71-74.


1.20 Cubic Feet (2 boxes)

Language of Materials


Immediate Source of Acquisition

Materials donated by Jean and Zohmah Charlot between 1966 and 1977.

Related Materials

The Helen Masten Papers (DG0677) contain nineteen items of correspondence from Jean and Zohmah Charlot spanning the years 1947-1977.

The Ann Nolan Clark Papers (DG0188); The Martin Charlot Papers (DG0176)

Jean Charlot Papers
In Progress
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Describing Archives: A Content Standard
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Repository Details

Part of the de Grummond Childrens Literature Collection Repository

118 College Drive - 5148
Hattiesburg MS 39406-0001