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Joseph A. Smith Papers

Identifier: 1997-0066

Scope and Content

The Joseph A. Smith Papers contain work by and documents pertaining to Joseph A. (Jos. A.) Smith's career as an illustrator of children's books. The collection consists, in the main, of original artwork by Smith and color proofs. The contents of the collection date from roughly 1983 to 2002. The majority of the collection dates from the 1990s.


  • Creation: 1983-2006

Conditions Governing Use

Copyright held by Joseph A. Smith.


Joseph A[nthony] Smith was born in Bellefonte, Pennsylvania in 1936. He studied with Hobson Pittman at the Pennsylvania State University in the summers of 1955 through 1958 and 1961 at which time Hobson retired and turned his painting class over to Smith. Smith received his BFA from the Pratt Institute in 1958, served in the armed forces from 1958 to 1960, and returned to Pratt on a scholarship to begin work on his MFA. In 1962 several of his previous instructors (including UConn Professor Emeritus Roger Crossgrove) turned their classes over to Smith as well so Smith was teaching painting, drawing, and figure sculpture classes full time. Over the years Smith has taught painting classes, figure drawing, anatomy and a reportorial drawing class co-taught with Jacob Lawrence. In 2012, Smith teaches third year drawing, illustration, and symbolic imagery (a class he created in the late 1980s) in the undergraduate program, and drawing and painting for majors preparing for their thesis exhibitions in the MFA program.

Smith has also worked as a professional artist since 1961. He has exhibited his work at the Pennsylvania Academy for Fine Arts (1961, 1967, 1969), at the Staten Island Institute of Arts and Sciences (1966), at the Bethel Gallery in Connecticut (1978), at the Newhouse Gallery in Staten Island (1982), at Adirondak Community College in New York ( 1987), at the Trenton City Museum (1992), at the Staemfli Gallery in New York (1992), at the Esther Allen Green Museum in Ohio, and at the Thomas J. Dodd Research Center in Connecticut (2004). Though these exhibitions were independent, Smith has also worked extensively with other artists. Smith has also employed his art by working as a design consultant, an exhibition designer, and a member of the Board of Directors on the Staten Island Council of Arts (1971-1976).

Smith's art has been recognized by his peers with several prestigious awards, including the Mary S. Litt Award for Watercolor, 100th Annual American Watercolor Society (1967) and the New York Society of Illustrators Merit Award (1973, 1974, 1979, 1982, 1998).


102 Linear Feet

Language of Materials



Joseph A[nthony] Smith, children's author/illustrator and artist received his BFA from the Pratt Institute in 1958 and began teaching there in 1962. Smith continues to teach there in the Department of Painting and Drawing. The collection contains artwork for over thirty children's books.


For ease of research, the collection is arranged alphabetically by book title. When necessary, there has been some separation of materials according to physical size. This separation is reflected in the finding aid by box numbers and locations.

Series I: Children's Literature (undate, 1983-2002); Series II: Accession 2021-0110.

Acquisition Information

The materials in this collection were received from Joseph A. Smith in four installments. The first and largest accession was received in 1997, and later donations were received in 2001, 2003, and 2021.

General note

Bunton, Donald, Jr., et al., Who's Who in American Art: 2001-2002, New Providence, New Jersey, Marquis Who's Who, 2001. 1116.

General note

Published Works:

Books by Smith

Missing Title

  1. The Pen and Ink Book: Materials and Techniques for Today's Artist.Watson-Guptill Publications, 1992.
  2. Circus Train.Harry N. Abrams, 2001.

General note

Books Illustrated by Smith.

Missing Title

  1. Martin, Bill, Knots on a Counting Rope, Holt, Rinehart, and Winston, 1966.
  2. Epstein, Sam and Beryl Williams Epstein, European Folk Festivals, Garrard Publishing Company, 1968.
  3. Conrad, Joseph, Heart of Darkness and Other Tales, Franklin Library, 1982.
  4. Evslin, Bernard, Hercules., Morrow, 1984.Trumpet Club, 1991.
  5. Hautzig, Deborah, and Frank L. Baum, The Wizard of Oz, Random House, 1984.
  6. MacDonald, George, The Princess and the Goblin, Grosset and Dunlap, 1985.Scholastic, 1990.
  7. McKinley, Robin, and Rudyard Kipling, Tales from the Jungle Book, Random House, 1985.
  8. Segel, Elizabeth, Short Takes: A Short Story Collection for Young Readers, Lothrop, Lee, and Shepard Books, 1986.Dell Publishing, 1992.
  9. Overton, Jenny, The Thirteen Days of Christmas, Greenwillow Books, 1987.
  10. Guiberson, Brenda Z., Turtle People, Atheneum Books, 1990.
  11. Cooper, Susan, Matthew's Dragon, M.K. McElderry Books, 1990.Aladdin Books, 1994.
  12. Banks, Lynne Reid, The Adventures of King Midas, Morrow Junior Books, 1992.
  13. Fleishman, Sid, Jim Ugly, Greenwillow Books, 1992.Harper Trophy, 2003.
  14. Griffith, Helen V., "Mine Will," Said John, Greenwillow Books, 1992.
  15. Serfozo, Mary, Benjamin Bigfoot, M.K. McElderry Books, 1993.
  16. Hass, Jessie, Chipmunk!, Greenwillow Books, 1993.
  17. Cooper, Susan, Danny and the Kings, Margaret K. McElderry Books, 1993.
  18. Jones, Diana Wynne, Stopping for a Spell: Three Fantasies, Greenwillow Books, 1993.Puffin Books, 1996.
  19. Haas, Jessie, Mowing, Greenwillow Books, 1994.
  20. Levin, Betty, Starshine and Sunglow, Greenwillow Books, 1994.
  21. Wolkstein, Diane, Step by Step, Morrow Junior Books, 1994.Harcourt, 2000.
  22. Whitcraft, Melissa, Tales from One Street Over, Avon Books, 1994.
  23. Haas, Jessie, A Blue for Beware, Greenwillow Books, 1995 .
  24. Heller, Nicholas, Goblins in Green, Greenwillow Books, 1995.Mulberry Books, 1999.
  25. Gellman, Mark, and Thomas Hartman, How Do You Spell God?: Answers to the Big Questions from Around the World, Morrow Junior Books, 1995.Beech Tree, 1998.
  26. Haas, Jessie, No Foal Yet, Greenwillow Books, 1995.
  27. Haas, Jessie, Be Well, Beware, Greenwillow Books, 1996.
  28. Levin, Betty, Gift Horse, Greenwillow Books, 1996.Scholastic, 1997.
  29. Farmer, Nancy, Runnery Granary, Greenwillow Books, 1996.
  30. Haas, Jessie, Sugaring, Greenwillow Books, 1996.
  31. Ginsburg, Mirra, Clay Boy, Greenwillow Books, 1997.
  32. Heller, Nicholas, The Giant, Greenwillow Books, 1997.
  33. Fleischman, Sid, Bandit's Moon, Greenwillow Books, 1998.
  34. Huck, Charlotte H., A Creepy Countdown, Greenwillow Books, 1998.
  35. Levin, Betty, Creature Crossing, Greenwilow Books, 1999.
  36. Heller, Nicholas, Ogres! Ogres! Ogres!, Greenwillow Books, 1999.Scholastic2000.
  37. Heller, Nicholas, Elwood and the Witch, Greenwillow Books, 2000.
  38. Haas, Jessie, Hurry!, Greenwillow Books, 2000.
  39. Rubin, Susan Goldman, The Yellow House: Vincent van Gogh and Paul Gauguin Side by Side, Harry N. Abrams, 2001.
  40. Gowler, Rhonda, Eek! Creak! Snicker, Sneak, Atheneum Books for Young Readers, 2002.
  41. Armstrong, Jennifer, Audubon: Painter of Birds in the Wild Frontier, H.N. Abrams, 2003.
  42. Jong, Erica, Witches, Harry N. Abrams, 2004.

Joseph A. Smith Papers
Archives & Special Collections staff
2005 January
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Script of description

Repository Details

Part of the Archives and Special Collections, University of Connecticut Library Repository

University of Connecticut Library
405 Babbidge Road Unit 1205
Storrs Connecticut 06269-1205 USA US