|Rare Book & Manuscript Library|
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Using the Collection
Note: some material may be restricted or offsite
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Series I: Business Records, 1940-1994
At a Glance
The collection is arranged in two series. Series I is arranged in chronological order. Series II is arranged by the ID number assigned to each book by its publisher.
Scope and Contents
The Ian and Betty Ballantine Books and Business Records document the Ballantines' work in publishing from the 1940s through the 1980s. The collection includes five boxes of administrative documents from Penguin Books USA, Bantam Books, Ballantine Books and Peacock Books. Administrative documents cover the management of these presses as well as the editorial, sales, inventorying, and advertising processes. In addition, it includes 59 boxes which contain the editorial libraries of Penguin Books USA, Bantam Books, and Ballantine Books. These libraries are made up of nearly complete print runs of Penguin Books, Pelican Books, Bantam Books, and Ballantine Books, dating from 1935-1990.
Using the Collection
Rare Book and Manuscript Library
Conditions Governing Access
Student papers in Box 3 are restricted for 75 years from date of creation.
This collection is located off-site. You will need to request this material at least three business days in advance to use the collection in the Rare Book and Manuscript Library reading room.
Conditions Governing Use
Single photocopies may be made for research purposes. The RBML maintains ownership of the physical material only. Copyright remains with the creator and his/her heirs. The responsibility to secure copyright permission rests with the patron.
Identification of specific item; Date (if known); Ian and Betty Ballantine Books and Business Records; Box and Folder; Rare Book and Manuscript Library, Columbia University Library.
Sidney Kramer Papers and Library, MS#1841: Sidney Kramer was an editor who worked with Ian Ballantine as an original director of Ballantine and Co. and then of Bantam Books.
About the Finding Aid / Processing Information
Columbia University Libraries, Rare Book and Manuscript Library
This collection was processed by Celeste Brewer and Rachel Klepper. Finding aid written by Celeste Brewer and Rachel Klepper in November 2018.
The business records were kept in the order that they were received. Materials that were in binders were removed and foldered, and original titles were retained. Two folders that did not fit in record cartons were moved to Box 6, a manuscript box. Folder 1 was originally in box 1 and folder 2 was originally in Box 4. Brittle pages were photocopied. Books were retained in the physical order that they were received. 22 books were discarded due to mold damage. A list of these discarded books is available upon request.
2018-11-09 XML document instance created by Celeste Brewer.
2019-05-20 EAD was imported spring 2019 as part of the ArchivesSpace Phase II migration.
History / Biographical Note
Biography of Ian and Betty Ballantine
Ian (1916-1995) and Betty Ballantine (1919-2019) were book publishers who contributed to the growth of paperback book sales in the United States. The Ballantines began working for Penguin Books in 1939, opening up an American branch of the United Kingdom-based company. During World War II, paperback books became more popular after their distribution to soldiers in Europe. In 1945, the Ballantines helped found Bantam Books with Walter Pitkin and Sidney Kramer, and Ian became its first president. Bantam mostly sold paperback reprints of books previously published in hardcover. In the late 1940s and early 1950s, Ian also taught courses on the business of book publishing in the Sociology department of Columbia University's School of General Studies. In 1952, amidst tension between Ian Ballantine and other managers and an inquiry into his leadership, Ian and Betty Ballantine left Bantam to found Ballantine Books. Ballantine was an innovative press that published paperback originals, specializing in science fiction, fantasy, westerns, and mystery novels. In 1973, Random House purchased Ballantine Books, and Ian and Betty Ballantine became freelance consulting editors and publishers.