Guide to the Esther Brann Papers

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Overview of the Collection

Creator: Brann, Esther
Title: Esther Brann papers
Dates: 1924-1960 ( inclusive )
Quantity: 0.5 linear feet (33 containers)
Collection Number: Ax 432
Summary: Esther Brann (1899-1998) was an author and illustrator of books for children. The collection includes eight manuscripts, two published works, and a series of correspondence relating to Brann's interest in subjects such as her own child and young relatives, and her family's dog.
Repository: Special Collections and University Archives, University of Oregon Libraries

1299 University of Oregon
Eugene, Oregon, 97403-1299
(541) 346-3068

Languages: Collection materials are in English. 
Sponsor: Funding for encoding this finding aid was provided through a grant awarded by the National Endowment for the Humanities.

Historical Note

Esther Brann was born in New York City on July 21, 1899. She was educated at the Art Students' League, Cooper Union, the National Academy of Design, and the Fontainebleau School of Fine Arts in France. After completing her studies she returned to New York, and, experiencing difficulty in finding work as an illustrator, she decided to write and illustrate her own books.

Her first book was Nanette of the Wooden Shoes, published by Macmillan in 1922. This work was followed by A Quebec Sketchbook (1926), Lupe Goes to School (1930), Nicolina (1931), Yann and His Island (1932), Bobbie and Donnie Were Twins (1933), based on her twin nephews who actually were called Bobbie and Donnie; Around the World With Esther Brann (1935), Another New Year With Bobbie and Donnie (1936), Patrick Was His Name (1938), concerning her family's dog; Patrick Goes A-Hunting (1940), Five Puppies for Sale (1948); and Book for Baby, inspired by her son.

She also illustrated Edna Albert's Little Pilgrim to Penn's Woods and The Shawl with the Yellow Bells, as well as Mary Jane Carr's Children of the Covered Wagon.

Brann married Dr. Richard Schorr, with whom she had a son, Alan Richard. Richard Schorr enlisted in the Navy in 1942 and served for three years as Commander and Lieutenant Commander. He was stationed in Guam for thirteen months, and afterwards posted to Pensacola, Florida; Norfolk, Virginia; Yonkers, New York; and Hayward, Camp Parks, and Long Beach, California. Brann and their son traveled with him, finally settling in Los Angeles, California.

Brann was named one of ten national award winners for her children's books. As well as writing and illustrating, she enjoyed sculpting and jewelry making.

Esther Brann Schorr died on January 3, 1998 in Ventura, California.


Ward, Martha E. and Dorothy A. Marquardt. Authors of Books for Young People (Metuchen, N.J: Scarecrow Press) 1971

The H.W. Wilson Company, Junior Book of Authors, 2nd ed.; Junior Authors Electronic (1951), updated 1999.)

Ventura County Star. January 9, 1998.

Content Description

The Esther Brann Papers include eight book manuscripts of various versions, some with galley proofs, illustrations, or miscellaneous fragments: Another New Year With Bobbie and Donnie, Five Puppies for Sale, Nanette Goes for the Bread, Nanette of the Wooden Shoes, Nicolina, Patrick Goes A-Hunting, A Quebec Sketchbook, and Yann and His Island. Two published works include Nicolina and Patrick Was His Name.

The correspondence includes seventy-three letters, of which the bulk (forty-one) concerns the Macmillan Company from 1927-1960.

Use of the Collection

Restrictions on Access :  

Collection is open to the public.

Collection must be used in Special Collections & University Archives Reading Room.

Restrictions on Use :  

Property rights reside with Special Collections & University Archives. Copyright resides with the creators of the documents or their heirs. All requests for permission to publish collection materials must be submitted to Manuscripts Librarian of the Division of Special Collections & University Archives. The reader must also obtain permission of the copyright holder.

Archival may contain materials with sensitive or confidential information that is protected under federal and/or state right to privacy laws and other regulations.

Researchers are advised that the disclosure of certain information pertaining to identifiable living individuals represented in this collection without the consent of those individuals may have legal ramifications (e.g. a cause of action for invasion of privacy may arise if facts concerning an individual's private life are published that would be deemed highly offensive to a reasonable person) for which the University of Oregon assumes no responsibility.

If a researcher finds sensitive personal information in a collection, please bring it to the attention of the reading room staff.

Preferred Citation :  

[Identification of item], Esther Brann Papers, Ax 432, Special Collections & University Archives, University of Oregon Libraries, Eugene, Oregon.

Administrative Information

Acquisition Information :  

Gift of Esther Brann Schorr in 1968

Processing Note :  

Collection processed by staff.

This finding aid may be updated periodically to account for new acquisitions to the collection and/or revisions in arrangement and description.

Detailed Description of the Collection

1 1 Another Year With Bobbie and Donnie. Pencil tracings
1 2 Five Puppies For Sale. Manuscript
1 3 Nanette Goes for the Bread. Manuscript
1 4 Nanette of the Wooden Shoes. Page proofs
1 5 Nicolina. Manuscript
1 6 Nicolina. Partially printed copy
1 7 Patrick Goes A-Hunting. Manuscript
1 8 A Quebec Sketchbook. Manuscript
1 9 Yann and His Island. Manuscript
1 10 Correspondence
1 11 Nicolina. Bound, first chapter
1 12 Patrick Was His Name. Bound volume
1 13 Another New Year With Bobbie and Donnie. Mock-up; correspondence with Doris S. Patee


  • Personal Names :
  • Brann, Esther--Correspondence
  • Corporate Names :
  • Macmillan Company--Correspondence
  • Subject Terms :
  • Children's literature, American--Authorship
  • Publishers and publishing--Correspondence
  • Women authors, American--20th century
  • Women illustrators--United States
    • Form or Genre Terms :
    • Book illustrations
    • Manuscripts for publication

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