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Evaline Ness Papers

Identifier: CLRC-60

Scope and Contents

The collection contains production materials for twenty titles published between 1954 and 1983. It includes both manuscript and illustrative material, with an emphasis on the latter. The illustrative material includes works done in a variety of media many with separations, studies, dummies, layouts, paste ups, transparencies, a photograph, and photostats. The manuscript material includes typescripts, galley proofs, and front matter. The collection also contains two pieces of miscellaneous art done by Evaline Ness.


  • 1954-1983


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

Evaline Ness was born April 24, 1911 in Union City, Ohio. She attended Ball State Teacher's College, and studied art at the Chicago Art Institute, Corcoran School of Art in Washington, D.C., the Art Students League in New York City, and the Accademia di Belle Arti in Rome. Evaline Ness taught children's art classes, and worked as a fashion and magazine illustrator early in her career, and in the 1954 illustrated her first children's book, The Story of Ophelia, by Mary Gibbons. In 1963, she illustrated her own story, A Gift for Sula Sula. Throughout her long and prolific career, Evaline Ness illustrated many authors' books and was noted for her ability to work in a variety of media and her innovative and unique illustrations that interweaved text and pictures to create a story that captured a young child's attention and imagination. This talent is especially evident in her own written works with their girl protagonists and subtle stories that have a backdrop of "feminism" and present "real" characters learning about all of life's pleasures, problems, and pains. In 1967, Evaline Ness received the Caldecott Award for Sam, Bangs, and Moonshine, the story of Samantha a little girl whose penchant for telling lies or "moonshine" leads her into trouble and ultimately learns what is "true" and responsibility for one's words. Evaline Ness also displayed her artistic innovation in her cut-out works for children such as Victorian Paper House To Cut Out and Color, and Four Rooms From The Metropolitan Museum of Art To Cut Out and Color. These works allow children to create their own art work using patterns designed and created by Evaline Ness based on a variety of different types of houses and rooms. Evaline Ness continued to write and illustrate children's picture books through the 1970s and early 1980s, and died on August 12, 1986.


7.8 Cubic Feet


Evaline Ness' papers focus on her work as an author and illustrator of children's books, with emphasis on the latter. The collection contains production material for twenty titles published between 1954 and 1983, and includes both manuscript and illustrative material. The materials held include typescripts, galley proofs and front matter, illustrations done in a variety of media many with separations, studies, paste ups, dummies, layouts, transparencies, a photograph and photostats, and some miscellaneous art work.

Physical Location

See Detailed Descriptions for Each Title Item for Box Locations

Accession Information:

This collection was placed on permanent loan by Evaline Ness at the Children's Literature Research Collection at the University of Minnesota in 1971, with additional material added by Miss Ness during the 1970s and early 1980s.

Gift of: Ness, Evaline

Evaline Ness Papers
Christine Schonhart
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