Robert Presnell papers

Special Collections
Margaret Herrick Library © 2014

Descriptive Summary

Title: Robert Presnell papers
Date (inclusive): 1907-1977
Date (bulk): 1930s-1950s
Collection number: 36
Creator: Presnell, Robert R., Sr.
Extent: 6 linear feet of papers.
Repository: Margaret Herrick Library. Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences.
Languages: English

Important Information for Users of the Collection


Available by appointment only.

Publication rights

Property rights to the physical object belong to the Margaret Herrick Library. Researchers are responsible for obtaining all necessary rights, licenses, or permissions from the appropriate companies or individuals before quoting from or publishing materials obtained from the library.

Preferred Citation

Robert Presnell papers, Margaret Herrick Library, Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences.

Acquisition Information

Gift of Mrs. Robert Presnell Sr., 1978-1991


Robert R. Presnell Sr. was an American screenwriter and producer, active during the 1930s and 1940s. He served in the U.S. Signal Corps as a lieutenant colonel during World War II. Presnell moved to New York in 1950 to work for the United Nations as a film promotion officer. He worked as a writer for television from 1951 to 1954. Presnell scripted numerous industrial films for the Jam Handy Organization and Regan Film Productions in Detroit from 1954 to 1956. Returning to Hollywood in late 1957, he continued to write for television as a freelancer. Presnell's script for MEET JOHN DOE (1941) was nominated for an Academy Award.

Collection Scope and Content Summary

The Robert Presnell papers span the years 1907-1977 (bulk 1930s-1950s) and encompass 6 linear feet. The collection contains dozens of screenplays and treatments by Presnell. In addition there is biographical data, contracts, some correspondence, extensive files relating to the work of the Signal Corps, and a substantial record of Presnell's military career.


Arranged in the following series: 1. Production files, subseries A-B as follows: A. Produced; B. Unproduced; 2. Television files, subseries A-B as follows: A. Produced; B. Unproduced; 3. Stage files, subseries A-B as follows: A. Produced; B. Unproduced; 4. Story files; 5. Subject files

Indexing Terms

Presnell, Robert R., Sr. , 1894-1969--Archives.