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Wanda Gág Collection

Identifier: CLRC-29

Scope and Contents

Wanda Gág's papers focus on her work as an author and illustrator of children's books. The collection contains production material for twenty seven published and unpublished titles, and personal correspondence and papers. It includes holographs (manuscripts) and typescripts, proofs, notes, illustrations done in a variety of media, studies and sketches done in a variety of media, calligraphy, dummies, color samples, proofs, and promotional material. There is also production material for titles not verified as published and a substantial amount of miscellaneous art work and other non-book material. The collection contains correspondence to and from Wanda Gág, including some from family members, friends, publishers, and others. The collection also contains scrapbooks, photograph albums, and other personal material, clippings, and memorabilia compiled by Wanda Gág and others.


  • 1895 - 1993


Conditions Governing Access

Open for use in the Elmer L. Andersen Library reading room.

Conditions Governing Use

This collection may be 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. Researchers may quote from the collection under the fair use provision of the copyright law.

Biographical / Historical

Wanda Gág was born March 11, 1893 in New Ulm, Minnesota. She grew up in a household that valued the rich folk traditions and tales of Germany, Austria and Czechoslovakia, and spoke German. Two of Wanda Gág's siblings, Howard and Flavia, would also work in the arts. Wanda Gág studied art at the Minneapolis Art School and the St. Paul Art School in Minnesota, and later at the Art Students League in New York City. She began her career as a commercial artist, and in 1928 published her first book for children Millions of Cats. The book received a Newbery Honor citation in 1929. She also is also known for her adaptations and illustrations for many of the Grimm fairy tales. Wanda Gág did much of her art work in black and white; Nothing At All is one exception. She also wrote one book for adults, Growing Pains, that explored her own artistic growth.

Gag received Caldecott Honor citations for Nothing At All and Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs, as well as a second Newbery Honor for The ABC Bunnyin 1934. Wanda Gág died on June 27, 1946 and in 1977 was posthumously awarded the Kerlan Award by the University of Minnesota Children's Literature Research Collections for her contribution to children's literature.

Biographical Sources:

Something About the Author, vol. 100

Yesterday's Authors of Books for Children, vol. 1

Children's Literature Review, vol. 4


16.7 Linear Feet (17 boxes)

Language of Materials



Wanda Gág's papers focus on her work as an author and illustrator of children's books. The collection contains production material for published and unpublished titles, and personal correspondence and papers.


Collection guide arranged alphabetically by title or material type.

Immediate Source of Acquisition

Part of this collection was originally given to Dr. Irvin Kerlan who in turn donated his collection to the University of Minnesota. Additional material was purchased and gifted from the estate and friends and family of Wanda Gag, including Robert Janssen, and others.

Wanda Gág Papers, 1895-1993
CLRC Staff
2003, 2009
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Script of description

Revision Statements

  • October 10, 2014: Collection reprocessed by Lindsey Geyer, EAD updated by Lisa Calahan.
  • August 17, 2015: Additional items added to collection and EAD updated by Christopher True.
  • March 2023: Description updated by Caitlin Marineau.

Collecting Area Details

Contact The Children's Literature Research Collections Collecting Area

Suite 113, Elmer L. Andersen Library