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N. M. Bodecker Papers

Identifier: CLRC-99

Scope and Contents

The collection contains production material for several dozen titles created by Bodecker. The collection includes both manuscript and illustrative material, with an emphasis on the latter. The manuscript material includes holographs and typescripts, and there are also holograph notebooks for a number of unpublished titles, talks and classes given by Bodecker, miscellaneous autobiographical material, and unpublished poetry and prose. The illustrative material included illustrations done in a variety of media, some with separations, sketches, dummies, proofs, and photocopies.


  • 1953 - 1992


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 Sketch

N.M. [ Niels Mogens] Bodecker was born January 13, 1922 in Copenhagen, Denmark. He studied and served in the military in Denmark during the 1930s and 1940s and published his first poetry and book illustrations there during the 1940s. N.M. Bodecker came to the United States in 1952 and illustrated his first American children's book, Half Magic by Edward Eager, in 1954. For the next three decades, N.M. Bodecker illustrated a number of books by other authors, particularly Edward Eager and Robert Kraus. In 1972 he published his own story, Miss Jaster's Garden. N.M. Bodecker also wrote verse for children, especially nonsense verse that drew on his own childhood "recollections" and critics called these verses "whimsical," and "sharp but not cruel," full of clever "manipulation of rhymes." He also translated Danish verses into English in his self-illustrated book It's Raining Said John Twaining, which was an American Library Association and School Library Association Notable Book for 1973. N. M. Bodecker's illustrations reflect his sense of humor and whimsey and imagination. N.M. Bodecker died on February 1, 1988 in Hanover, New Hampshire, and his last book, Water Pennies, was published posthumously in 1991.


9.6 Cubic Feet (13 boxes [7 record cartons, 1 half-hollinger, 5 flat boxes])

Language of Materials



N.M. Bodecker's papers focus on his work as an illustrator and author of children's books. The collection contains production material several dozen titles by Bodecker, including both written and illustrative material.


Collection guide arranged alphabetically by published title.

Accession Information:

Gift of the estate of N. M. Bodecker.

Related Materials

Correspondence with Windmill Books located in the Robert Kraus/Windmill Papers.


N.M. Bodecker Papers, 1952-1992
Christina Cowan and Nancy Larsen
1996 and 2004
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Script of description
Language of description note

Collecting Area Details

Contact The Children's Literature Research Collections Collecting Area

Suite 113, Elmer L. Andersen Library