Rare Book & Manuscript Library

Lyle Stuart papers, 1926-2010, bulk 1949-2003

Series V: Personal, 1935-2005

This series is divided into three subseries and collects the bulk of material unrelated to Stuart's writings and publishing career. Materials include art, collectibles, contracts, correspondence, education records, ephemera, financial records, loan statements and related legal records, medical records, military records, obituaries, party planning materials, photographs, and sheet music.

External users and Columbia affiliates may view materials on-site at RBML. Due to COVID-19 restrictions, only Columbia affiliates may view materials on-site at Avery, Starr, and Burke. After clicking 'Submit Request', users will login with their UNI and password (Columbia affiliates) or their special collections account (external users). Appointments are required and will be arranged according to each individual repository's policy.

Subseries V.1: Collected Art and Ephemera, 1935-2000

This subseries includes fine art (John Gossage's 2000 artist's book "Hey Fuckface!"), cartoons by Arthur Robins and Jack Davis, assorted collectibles (bumper stickers, lapel pins, coin collecting materials), rare souvenirs (Babe Ruth All American Underwear from the 1930s), and sheet music collected by Stuart, including autographed copies of Irving Caesar songs. The subseries is arranged in three files.

Many more Arthur Robins cartoons (primarily pen-and-ink and watercolor) can be found in Subseries VI.2's Production Files.

Box 32 Art, 1970-2000, (5 folders)

(An edition of John Gossage's artist book,Hey Fuckface!, has been removed and cataloged separately)

Box 19 Collectibles, 1935-1990, (6 folders, 10 pins, and 1 box)

Box 33 Collectibles, 1935-1990, (6 folders, 10 pins, and 1 box)

Box 34 Collectibles, 1935-1990, (6 folders, 10 pins, and 1 box)

Box 19 Sheet Music and Song Lyrics, 1948-1980, (8 folders)

Subseries V.2: Personal Records, 1944-2005

Personal records include material from Stuart's service in the Merchant Marine and Air Force, as well as family records. Most of Early Life and Family relates to Stuart's first wife, Mary Louise, and her battle with liver cancer, and includes medical records, his search and reward advertising for an alternative cure, consolation letters, and research relating to Stuart's memorial book,Mary Louise, published in 1972. There are also remembrances of Stuart's father (who committed suicide in 1928) and brother, and his frequently updated memorial "People I've Known Who Have Died."

This subseries also includes the Stuart family's financial records unrelated to publishing. In addition to bank statements, investment activity, and tax returns, Stuart frequently borrowed and lent money, and this often led to the lively exchanges in this subseries' correspondence, as well as occasional legal remedies. Of the many loan materials, most notable is a sizable personal loan made to fellow publisher Barney Rosset, involving the partial purchase of Rosset's Blue Moon Books.

Box 19 Early Life and Family, 1944-2005, (24 folders)

Box 20 Early Life and Family, 1944-2005, (24 folders)

Box 20 Financial Records, 1945-2003, (17 folders)

Box 20 Photographs, 1961-1990, (10 folders)

Box 32 Photographs, 1961-1990, (10 folders)

Subseries V.3: Topical Files, 1948-1998

Topical files include Stuart's collection of materials on major subjects of interest. Stuart was a fierce defender of Cuba in the 1960s, belonging to the Fair Play for Cuba Committee, and traveled to Cuba on several occasions to meet with Fidel Castro. His Cuba file includes brochures, clippings, correspondence, souvenirs, and Congressional testimony. Due partially to his political activities, Stuart had files at both the Department of Defense and the FBI, which were produced after his FOIA requests in the mid-1980s.

Stuart considered himself a semi-professional gambler, particularly in baccarat. He wrote two books on gambling, published several more, was part owner of a casino, and created and produced a gambling newsletter,High Roller. The Gambling file includes Stuart's accounting of his tournaments and casino trips, clippings, club cards, tournament certificates, and the case from a casino baccarat set. His books on gambling can be found in Series VII.

Jamaica and the Stuart Place cover records and news related to Port Maria, Jamaica, where Lyle and Mary Louise owned and rented a vacation home. The file includes advertising, clippings, correspondence, and financial records.

The Juvenile Delinquency file dates from the late 1950s when Lyle and Mary Louise Stuart lived in Fort Greene, Brooklyn. They became interested in the welfare of low-income teenagers in the area and began an odd jobs program for their co-op and collected articles related to juvenile delinquency in NYC more generally. The Fort Greene cooperative is also the site of the final file, Kingsview Homes. The Stuarts were frequently in dispute with the cooperative board (including over the odd jobs program they attempted to institute) and made efforts, both in and out of the courts, to replace the board. The Kingsview Homes file includes correspondence, lawsuits and legal files, meeting minutes, neighbor surveys, and copies of theKingsview Flyernewsletter.

Box 20 Cuba, 1961-1981, (12 folders)

Box 20 Erotology, 1984-1985, (1 folder)

Box 21 FOIA Responses, 1948-1985, (11 folders)

Box 21, 34 Gambling, 1966-1997, (9 folders and 1 box)

Box 21 Jamaica and The Stuart Place, 1969-1998, (14 folders)

Box 21 Juvenile Delinquency, 1957-1958, (5 folders)

Box 22 Kingsview Homes, 1953-1962, (18 folders)