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Lois Darling Papers

Identifier: CLRC-121

Scope and Contents

The Lois Darling collection is comprised of production materials for 8 titles by Lois alone, dated from 1949-67, and materials for another 10 titles in collaboration with her husband, dated from 1959-72. There is also a substantial collection of studies, primarily in pencil, or ink and pencil, including preliminary studies, notes, and memos. Manuscript materials include working typescripts with several levels of rewriting. A large portion of the illustrative collection comprises studies for titles not otherwise represented in the Kerlan Collection (many are not identified), and Lois's pencil and oil studies with some production work predating her marriage. The material is arranged by title. Related collection: Darling, Louis.


  • 1938-1884


Language of Materials


Access and Use:

Collection is open for researchers with no restrictions. Registration with the collection is required.


This collection is protected by the Copyright Law of the United States (Title 17, U.S. Code). 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 Sketch

Lois MacIntyre was born in New York City in 1917. She studied at Grand Central School of Art, worked as a sailing instructor, and made ship models as part of the war effort. She then served in the U.S. Navy WAVES. She married Louis Darling in 1946 and began studying at Columbia University in 1947. The Darlings collaborated on natural history and ecology books for children and adults and were particularly interested in books that emphasized the vital importance of understanding our environment and the other things that share it with us (SATA, 3:58). Among other books illustrated by the Darlings was Rachel Carson's Silent Spring . Lois Darling continued writing self-illustrated books after the death of her husband in 1970. She loved sailing and was the National Women's Sailing Champion in 1941. She was elected to membership in the Society of Illustrators. She died in 1989.

Biographical Sources: Something About the Author, vol. 3, 64and Contemporary Authors, (New Revised Series), vol. 3


23 folders (1.4 linear ft, manuscripts and other material 10.5 cubic ft. illustrative and related material)


The Lois Darling collection is comprised of work she did alone and with her husband, Louis Darling. When working together, the Darlings focused on natural history and environmental topics presented in a relatively simple text but with highly accurate and detailed scientific drawings. The collection contains production materials for 8 titles by Lois alone and materials for another 11 titles worked on by both husband and wife. A substantial portion of the collection is comprised of studies and rejected drawings for many titles.

Physical Location

See Detailed Descriptions for Each Title Item for Box Locations

Accession Information:

Collection began when Lois Darling donated illustrations she created in collaboration with Louis Darling, her husband. The original gift was followed by the donation of a substantial collection of Lois Darling studies, which she began while serving in the U.S. WAVES durint World War II. These materials, production materials for books illustrated by Lois Darling, and other papers were donated to the Kerlan Collection by the Estate of Lois Darling.

Lois Darling Papers
Jim Eyer
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Script of description
Language of description note
Description is in English

Collecting Area Details

Contact The Children's Literature Research Collections Collecting Area

Suite 113, Elmer L. Andersen Library