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Richard Merkin collection

Call Number: YCAL MSS 762

Scope and Contents

The Richard Merkin collection, which spans 1823 to 2009, contains extensive correspondence and artwork. The collection also contains photographs, clippings, ephemera, audiovisual materials, objects, scrapbooks, and personal papers related to Merkin's life and work.


  • 1823 - 2009


Conditions Governing Access

The materials are open for research.

Boxes 40, 61 (audiovisual materials): Restricted fragile material. For further information consult the appropriate curator.

Box 60 (record album storage): Restricted fragile material. For further information consult the appropriate curator.

Conditions Governing Use

The Richard Merkin Collection is the physical property of the Beinecke Rare Book and Manuscript Library, Yale University. Literary rights, including copyright, belong to the authors or their legal heirs and assigns. For further information, consult the appropriate curator.

Immediate Source of Acquisition

June 2010 acquisitions: purchased from Derringer Books on the Edwin J. Beinecke Book Fund, the Alfred Z. Baker, Jr. Fund, and the Danford N. Barney, Jr. Fund.

December 2010 acquisition: purchased from Appledore Books on the Edwin J. Beinecke Book Fund.

September 2011 acquisition: purchased from Jeff Hirsch Books on the Donald Windham-Sandy Campbell Collection Endowment Fund.


Organized into three groupings: June 2010 Acquisitions; December 2010 Acquisition; and September 2011 Acquisition.


65.5 Linear Feet ((57 boxes) + 4 broadsides, 1 roll, 1 record album storage)

Language of Materials


Catalog Record

A record for this collection is available in Orbis, the Yale University Library catalog

Persistent URL

Richard Merkin (1938-2009)

Richard Merkin (1938-2009) was an American painter, illustrator, and arts educator. Born in Brooklyn, NY, Merkin received his BA in art from Syracuse University (1960), a Master's Degree in art from Michigan State University (1961), and a master's degree in Painting (MFA) from the Rhode Island School of Design (1963). He started teaching at RISD in 1963 and remained there for over forty years. His artwork was exhibited widely and his illustrations frequently appeared in Vanity Fair and the New Yorker.

Processing Information

Collections are processed to a variety of levels, depending on the work necessary to make them usable, their perceived research value, the availability of staff, competing priorities, and whether or not further accruals are expected. The library attempts to provide a basic level of preservation and access for all collections as they are acquired, and does more extensive processing of higher priority collections as time and resources permit.

This collection received a basic level of processing, including rehousing and minimal organization. Various acquisitions associated with the collection have not been merged and organized as a whole. Each acquisition is described separately in the contents list below and titled according to month and year of acquisition.

Information included in the Description of Papers note and Collection Contents section is drawn from information supplied with the collection and from an initial survey of the contents. Folder titles appearing in the contents list below are often based on those provided by the creator or previous custodian. Titles have not been verified against the contents of the folders in all cases. Otherwise, folder titles are supplied by staff during initial processing.

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

Guide to the Richard Merkin Collection
by Beinecke staff
March 2015
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description note
Finding aid written in English.

Part of the Beinecke Rare Book and Manuscript Library Repository

P. O. Box 208330
New Haven CT 06520-8330 US
(203) 432-2977


121 Wall Street
New Haven, CT 06511

Opening Hours

Access Information

The Beinecke Library is open to all Yale University students and faculty, and visiting researchers whose work requires use of its special collections. You will need to bring appropriate photo ID the first time you register. Beinecke is a non-circulating, closed stack library. Paging is done by library staff during business hours. You can request collection material online at least two business days in advance of your visit, using the request links in Archives at Yale. For more information, please see Planning Your Research Visit and consult the Reading Room Policies prior to visiting the library.