William A. Kittredge papers
Scope and Content of the Collection
Largely a collection of printed ephemera selected to exemplify the best design of the twentieth century, this collection also includes correspondence with other designers (most notably Rockwell Kent, Rudolph Ruzicka, Edward A. Wilson, D. B. Updike, Edward Penfield, and W. A. Dwiggins).
There are also many samples of Kittredge's own design work. In this last category and among the ephemera there are items that pre-date 1922; the remainder of the collection is material assembled by Kittredge while in Chicago, 1922-1945. The acquisition of the collection was described in the Newberry Library Bulletin for September 1946.
- Creation: 1907-1952
- Creation: Majority of material found within 1922 - 1944
Materials are in English.
Conditions Governing Access
The William A. Kittredge papers are open for research in the Special Collections Reading Room; 1 box at a time (Priority III).
Ownership and Literary Rights
The William A. Kittredge papers are the physical property of the Newberry Library. Copyright may belong to the authors or their legal heirs or assigns. For permission to publish or reproduce any materials from this collection, contact the Roger and Julie Baskes Department of Special Collections.
Biography of William A. Kittredge
Chicago designer and author on design, Director of Design and Typography for the R.R. Donnelley & Sons Co. of Chicago from 1922-1945.
Son of a Lowell, Massachusetts printer and himself apprenticed with Thomas Parkhurst of the Parkhurst Press (Chelmsford, Mass.), Kittredge worked for the Riverside Press (Boston), the Oswald Press (New York), and the Franklin Printing Co. (Philadelphia) before accepting the position as design director at R.R. Donnelley & Sons. In this capacity, he supervised all design services for what was then one of the largest printers in the U.S. Among his major accomplishments was Donnelley's highly regarded Four American Books project (1926-1930), which was intended to demonstrate the capabilities of the American commercial printing industry. Kittredge's articles on printing appeared in American Printer, Inland Printer, Publisher's Weekly, and The Colophon. He was a founding member of the Society of Typographic Arts and the Chicago Art Directors Club. His book designs won numerous awards from the American Institute of Graphic Arts.
14 Linear Feet (30 boxes, 1 oversize box)
Chicago designer and author on design, Director of Design and Typography for the R.R. Donnelley & Sons Co. of Chicago from 1922-1945. Largely a collection of printed ephemera selected to exemplify the best design of the twentieth century, this collection also includes a few original designs by Kittredge, some correspondence with other designers (most notably Rockwell Kent, Rudolph Ruzicka, Edward A. Wilson, D.B. Updike, and Edward Penfield), and extensive samples of Kittredge's printed products. In this last category there are a few items that pre-date 1922; the remainder is material assembled by Kittredge while in Chicago, 1922-1945.
Papers are organized in the following series
- Series 1: R.R. Donnelley & Sons Four American Books Project, 1926-1931
- Box 1
- Series 2: Other correspondence, 1921-1945
- Boxes 2-3
- Series 3: Design work by Kittredge, 1915-1922
- Boxes 4-6
- Series 4: Biographical information, 1915-1945
- Boxes 6-7
- Series 5: Ephemera and Oversize materials, 1907-1952
- Boxes 8-31
Collection Stack Location
4a 28 7-8, 4a 29 6
Purchase, The Kittredge estate, 1945-1946.
Adrian Alexander, 2011.
- American Institute of Graphic Arts (Organization)
- Art Directors Club (New York, N.Y.) (Organization)
- Art Directors Club of Chicago (Organization)
- Franklin Printing Company (Philadelphia, Pa.) (Organization)
- Kittredge, William A. (William Albion), 1891-1945 (Person)
- Cleland, T. M. (Thomas Maitland), 1880-1964 (Person)
- Packard Motor Car Company (Organization)
- Dwiggins, W. A. (William Addison), 1880-1956 (Person)
- Kent, Rockwell, 1882-1971 (Person)
- Penfield, Edward, 1866-1925 (Person)
- Ruzicka, Rudolph, 1883-1978 (Person)
- Updike, Daniel Berkeley, 1860-1941 (Person)
- Wilson, Edward A. (Edward Arthur), 1886-1970 (Person)
Genre / Form
- Inventory of the William A. Kittredge papers, 1907-1952, bulk 1922-1944
- Adrian Alexander
- Language of description
- Script of description