Erick Berry Papers
Scope and Contents
The collection includes correspondence, scrapbooks, and material on twenty-six titles, and some miscellaneous material. The correspondence and scrapbooks are arranged chronologically, with the titles arranged in alphabetical order with the material for each in the probable order in which it was created. The miscellaneous correspondence is to and from Berry from 1957 to 1972 and undated. The two scrapbooks contain reviews, articles, newpaper clippings, promotional items, photographs, and correspondence all dating from 1923 to 1971 and undated.
The Columbus Cannon (1954) by Herbert Best and illustrated by Erick Berry is set in Jamaica on an old plantation. It is the story of Gil Perrine, his new friends, and their discovery under a Jamaican reef when spear-fishing. For this title the collection holds an illustration, a color separation, and text overlay. The Four Londons of William Hogarth (1964) is a biography of the eighteenth-century artist. For this title the collection includes research material, manuscript and typescript notes, photographs, proofs, and a dust jacket. Green Door to the Sea (1955) is the story of sixteen-year-old Letty who is recovering from polio in Jamaica and finds her way back to health and happiness. The collection contains illustrations and a color separation for this title.
For Gunsmith's Boy (1942) by Herbert Best and illustrated by Erick Berry, the story of the gallant defense put up by one community against the hardships of pioneer life in upstate New York, the collection holds proofs. For Hay-foot, Straw-foot (1954), a tale of fort life during the French and Indian Wars, there are illustrations, a color separation, and negative and regular proofs. Homespun (1937) by Erick Berry and illustrated by Harold Vol Schmidt is a story of America in the 1830's through the eyes of several young people living in Santa Fe, New Orleans, and New York. For this title the collection includes illustrations, a proof, and a dust jacket. Honey of the Nile (1938) is a fictional account of what might have happened to King Tut's young widowed Queen after his death. The collection includes illustrations and proofs for this book.
Hudson Frontier (1942) tells the story of the city of Albany in 1664, the friction between the Dutch and the English, and the gradual merging of both sides into an American society. For this title there are illustrations, a proof, and a dust jacket. Key Corner (1938) by Eva Knox Evans and illustrated by Erick Berry is the story of Johnnie Heath growing up in the rural south. For this title the collection holds proofs. The Land and People of Finland (1959) and The Land and People of Iceland (1959) are two books in the "Portraits of the Nations" series. For both titles, the collection contains research material, dummies, galleys, proofs, and photographs. The former title also has manuscript notes, typescripts, and color separation. The Long Portage: A Story of Ticonderoga and Lord Howe (1948) by Herbert Best and illustrated by Erick Berry is set in upper New York during the French and Indian Wars, giving a vivid picture of Rogers' Rangers and the struggle around Ticonderoga. There is an illustration for this title.
The Magic Banana: And Other Polynesian Tales (1968) by Erick Berry and illustrated by Nicholas Amorosi is a collection of Polynesian legends and myths. The collection includes research material, typescripts, a text illustration, and galleys for this title. Men Who Changed the Map (1968) by Erick Berry and Herbert Best gives biographical accounts of some of the major leaders of history. For this title the collection includes manuscript notes, typescripts, galleys, a paste-up, and color separation proofs. Mr. Arctic: An Account of Vilhjalmur Stefansson (1966) is an account of the explorations and discoveries of the noted Canadian who headed north for Herschel Island to make contact with the Eskimos and the Arctic. For this title the collection holds research material, manuscript notes, typescripts, galleys, dummy pages, folded and gathered sheets, a proof, paste-up, and dust jacket. Not Without Danger (1951) by Herbert Best and illustrated by Erick Berry is a thrilling novel laid in pre-revolutionary Jamaica. The collection contains illustrations for this title. The Pilgrim Goose (1956) by Keith Robertson and illustrated by Erick Berry traces the history of the Pilgrim geese in America's history for more than three hundred years. For this title there are illustrations and a color separation.
The Polynesian Triangle (1968) by Erick Berry and Herbert Best provides an introduction to the people and culture of Polynesia and the white men who nearly annihilated them. The collection holds research material, manuscript notes, typescripts, galleys, and photographs. A Shipment for Susannah (1938) by Eleanor Weakley Nolen and illustrated by Erick Berry is the story of Susannah who lives in the slave quarters at Mt. Vernon. The collection holds proofs for this title. The Springing of the Rice: A Story of Thailand (1966) by Erick Berry and illustrated by John Kaufmann is the story of a boy named Tam and his life in Thailand. For this title the collection holds research material, manuscript notes, and a typescript. For Sybil Ludington's Ride (1952), based on a true incident of the Revolutionary War about a young patriotic heroine, the collection holds research material, illustrations, and proofs. Tal of the Four Tribes (1938) by Herbert Best and illustrated by Erick Berry is one of Best's "Tales of Adventure for Older Boys" series. For this title there are proofs.
Underwater Warriors (1967) describes the work of the Underwater Demolition Teams of the United States Navy and how the members are selected and trained. The collection holds research material, manuscript notes, typescripts, and photographs for this book. When Wagon Trains Rolled to Santa Fe (1966) illustrated by Charles Waterhouse is one of the "How They Lived" series planned to give greater meaning to the study of American history. For this title the collection has research material and typescripts. A World Explorer: Fridtjof Nansen (1969) illustrated by William Hutchinson is a biography of a Norwegian explorer, author, scientist, and statesman who made many important expeditions to the North Pole. For this title there are manuscript notes and multiple typescripts. You Have Got to Go Out: The Story of the United States Coast Guard (1964) is another of Berry's profiles of the Armed Forces. The collection holds dummy pages, proofs, and a dust jacket.
- Majority of material found within [1937-1969]
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
Erick Berry was born Allena Champlin in New Bedford, Massachusetts in 1892. She spent her childhood in Albany, New York where she attended Albany Academy for Girls. Her father was the reference librarian in the State Library of Albany and gave Berry her first interest in books. Her first art training was at the Eric Pape School in Boston. This school was run along the revolutionary lines of the Paris studios, and Berry was so influenced by Eric Pape that she later acquired the name of Erick when she attended the Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Arts. When she married Carroll Berry, the artist, in 1916 her pseudonym became complete.
Berry completed school and tried her hand at various undertakings, including miniatures, murals, syndicated newspaper advertisements, designing of toys, Christmas cards, and department store fashions. Eventually she traveled to Paris where she studied art and later made her way down the west coast of Africa. In Nigeria she met and married her second husband, Herbert Best, who was a British government officer. Her first two books, Black Folk Tales: Retold from the Haussa of Northern Nigeria, West Africa (1928) and Girls in Africa (1928) resulted from her African adventures and enabled her to become a member of the Women Geographers. Berry and her husband began their collaboration as author-artist, with Berry illustrating all of Herbert Best's children's books and most of her own.
Berry wrote and/or illustrated close to one hundred books for children. She wrote and illustrated Winged Girl of Knossos (1933) for which she received a Newbery Honor award in 1934. She also illustrated two titles, Apprentice of Florence (1933) andGarram the Hunter, a Boy of the Hill Tribes (1930), which were Newbery Honor winners in 1934 and 1931 respectively. Berry and her husband lived for a time in the English Devonshire country, on a farm in the heart of the Adirondack Mountains, in Jamaica, the British West Indies, and sometimes spent winters on the eastern shore of Oahu. In later years they made their home in Sharon, Connecticut until Berry's death in 1974 and Herbert Best's death in 1980.
The Junior Book of Authors, pp. 29-30. Illustrators of Children's Books: 1946-1956, p. 74. Something About the Author, vol. 2, pp. 25-27.
9.60 Cubic Feet (20 Boxes)
Language of Materials
Immediate Source of Acquisition
Materials received from Erick Berry and Herbert Best from 1971-1973.
- Erick Berry Papers
- In Progress
- Description rules
- Describing Archives: A Content Standard
- Language of description
- Script of description
- Code for undetermined script
- Language of description note
Part of the de Grummond Childrens Literature Collection Repository
118 College Drive - 5148
Hattiesburg MS 39406-0001