Lilly Library Manuscript Collections


The Catbird Press mss., ca. 1983-2003, consist primarily of the files of small, independent book publisher Catbird Press. The Press was founded in 1987 by Robert Wechsler for the purpose of publishing Czech literature in translation and sophisticated prose humor in the classic American tradition. American fiction was added to the line-up in 1991 and British fiction in 1999. Other titles include two non-fiction works relating to charitable giving and improving public schools, as well as Rob Wechsler's book about translating and translation: Performing Without a Stage: The Art of Literary Translation. Catbird Press books are distributed to bookstores and wholesalers by Independent Publishers Group, some records for which are present in the collection.

The collection is organized into the following series: I. Publications; II. Personal; III. Business/office.

The Publications series includes correspondence with authors, translators and illustrators; drafts of books; promotion, sales and marketing, subsidiary rights and production materials; notes; reviews; as well as manuscripts of translations submitted to the Press that Catbird did not publish. The Personal series contains manuscripts and some correspondence relating to Wechsler's own writings such as book reviews, translations of Czech poems, and a long unpublished novel titled In Succession. Also present are his "To Do" sheets, vitae, and notebooks. Business/Office series contains additional materials regarding general distribution, warehousing, trade shows, and other post-publication matters.

An inventory of the collection is available.

Gift. 2006, 2007

Collection size: 10,500 items

For more information about this collection and any related materials contact the Public Services Department, Lilly Library, Indiana University, Bloomington, IN 47405. Call (812) 855-2452 or send an email using our Ask a Question form.