The Juster mss., ca. 1961–2007, consist of the personal papers of author Norton Juster. A native of Brooklyn, New York, Juster received a Bachelor of Architecture degree from the University of Pennsylvania in 1952. Juster taught at the Pratt Institute in Brooklyn and Hampshire College in Amherst, Massachusetts and holds the title of Professor Emeritus of Design from the latter. As an architect, he practiced in various firms, including one that he established, from 1960 to 1999. While Juster has retired from architecture, he continues to write and is the author of several acclaimed novels, primarily for children.
The collection is arranged into the following series: I. Biographical Information; II. Writings; and III. Audio/Visual Materials. Biographical information details Juster's education, early works in writing, and career in architecture.
Writings are arranged in subseries alphabetically by book title: Alberic the Wise and Other Journeys (1965), a grouping of three fantastical stories in a medieval setting; As: A Surfeit of Similes (1989), an exploration of the simile in a rhyming narrative; The Dot and the Line: A Romance in Lower Mathematics (1963), a small picture book containing the tale of a line who falls in love with a dot (adapted into an Academy Award winning animated short film in 1965); The Hello, Goodbye Window (2005), the story of the special relationship between grandparents and grandchildren, told from the perspective of a little girl and her magical getaway at her grandparent's house; Otter Nonsense (1982), issued in two different editions, a collection of puns on animal names; The Phantom Tollbooth (1961), Juster's most acclaimed piece, about young Milo's adventures in The Lands Beyond (adapted into an animated full-length feature film in 1970, as well as, by Juster himself, a libretto for an opera production in 1995); and Stark Naked (1969), another small-format book set up as a register of the citizens of the town of Emotional Heights, all of whom have names that match either their jobs or their characters.
The Writings series includes notes and outlines during various stages of Juster's works, drafts with corresponding illustrations, mock-ups of final products for each title, book reviews, and correspondence between the author and various publishers, illustrators and fans. Correspondence has been kept with the title to which it pertains. Original artwork by Eric Carle, Chris Raschka and Jules Feiffer can be found in the Otter Nonsense, The Hello, Goodbye Window and The Phantom Tollbooth sections, respectively.
Audio/visual materials contain demo tapes and the final production of The Phantom Tollbooth opera.
An inventory is available
Acquired: 2004, 2010
Collection size: 3,000 items