Jump to Content

Collection Guide
Collection Title:
Collection Number:
Get Items:
Finding Aid to the Helen Gentry and David Greenhood Papers, 1748-1988 (bulk 1930-1980)
BANC MSS 2007/101  
View entire collection guide What's This?
Search this collection
Collection Details
Table of contents What's This?
  • Collection Summary
  • Information for Researchers
  • Administrative Information
  • Biographical Information
  • Scope and Content of Collection

  • Collection Summary

    Collection Title: Helen Gentry and David Greenhood papers
    Date (inclusive): 1748-1988
    Date (bulk): 1930-1980
    Collection Number: BANC MSS 2007/101
    Creators: Greenhood, David Gentry, Helen, 1897-
    Extent: 7 cartons 8.75 linear feet
    Repository: The Bancroft Library.
    University of California, Berkeley
    Berkeley, CA 94720-6000
    Phone: (510) 642-6481
    Fax: (510) 642-7589
    Email: bancref@library.berkeley.edu
    URL: http://bancroft.berkeley.edu/
    Abstract: The Helen Gentry and David Greenhood Papers, 1748-1988 (bulk 1930-1980) contain materials relating to Gentry's career as a printer and designer, and Greenhood's work as a writer.
    Languages Represented: Collection materials are in English
    Physical Location: Many of the Bancroft Library collections are stored offsite and advance notice may be required for use. For current information on the location of these materials, please consult the library's online catalog.

    Information for Researchers


    Collection is open for research.

    Publication Rights

    Materials in this collection may be protected by the U.S. Copyright Law (Title 17, U.S.C.). In addition, the reproduction of some materials may be restricted by terms of University of California gift or purchase agreements, donor restrictions, privacy and publicity rights, licensing and trademarks. Transmission or reproduction of materials protected by copyright beyond that allowed by fair use requires the written permission of the copyright owners. Works not in the public domain cannot be commercially exploited without permission of the copyright owner. Responsibility for any use rests exclusively with the user.
    All requests to reproduce, publish, quote from, or otherwise use collection materials must be submitted in writing to the Head of Public Services, The Bancroft Library, University of California, Berkeley 94720-6000. See: http://bancroft.berkeley.edu/reference/permissions.html .

    Preferred Citation

    [Identification of item], Helen Gentry and David Greenhood Papers, BANC MSS 2007/101, The Bancroft Library, University of California, Berkeley

    Alternate Forms Available

    There are no alternate forms of this collection.

    Related Material

    Helen Gentry letter and list : Santa Fe, N.M., to James D. Hart, ALS and typescript (BANC MSS 90/214 c).
    David Greenhood correspondence, with Adolph E. Anderson (BANC MSS 89/16 c).
    Porter Garnett papers (BANC MSS C-H 118).
    William Whittingham Lyman memoirs : typescript (BANC MSS 71/150 c).

    Separated Material

    Printed materials have been transferred to the book collection of The Bancroft Library.

    Indexing Terms

    The following terms have been used to index the description of this collection in the library's online public access catalog
    Garnett, Porter, 1871-1951
    Gentry, Helen, 1897- --Archives
    Greenhood, David--Archives
    Harter, Evelyn
    Lyman, William Whittingham
    Gentry Press
    Holiday House (Firm)
    Authors, American--20th century
    Book designers
    Women in the book industries and trade
    Women printers
    Women publishers
    Women typographers

    Administrative Information

    Acquisition Information

    The Helen Gentry and David Greenhood Papers were given to The Bancroft Library by Rita Gentry on December 18, 2006. Additions were made in 2010.


    No additions are expected.

    Processing Information

    Processed by Arcadia Falcone in 2010.

    Biographical Information

    Helen Gentry

    Helen "Billy" Gentry (1897-1988) was a printer, book designer, and typographer. Born in California, she attended the University of California, Berkeley. She trained in fine bookmaking and printing at the Grabhorn Press in San Francisco -- where she was not allowed to do presswork, as Ed Grabhorn did not think it was a suitable job for a woman -- and further developed her skills working for a grocery store printing plant. In 1930, she started her own press, becoming one of the first contemporary women printers to do all aspects of the work herself. In 1934, she moved with her husband David Greenhood to New York, where she did design work for Simon and Schuster and other publishing houses, including designing the classic 1953 Harper & Brothers edition of the Little House books by Laura Ingalls Wilder. In 1935, she co-founded Holiday House with Vernon Ives and Ted Johnson, devoted to publishing well-designed children's books in fine bindings. Her work was often included in the American Institute of Graphic Arts' fifty best-designed books of the year, and appeared in an AIGA solo show in 1939. In 1963, Gentry moved with her husband to Santa Fe, New Mexico, where she continued to work as a freelance designer.

    David Greenhood

    Clarence David "Clink" Greenhood (1895-1983) wrote fiction, nonfiction, and poetry for adults and children, as well as editing books for Holiday House. Born in Buffalo, New York in 1895, he moved to California in 1912 and graduated from the University of California, Berkeley in 1922. At Berkeley he met Helen Gentry, and the pair married in 1923. Together they wrote Chronology of Books & Printing (published by Gentry Press in 1933, republished by Macmillan in 1936). His published works include Poems, et cetera and The Master Apprentice (both Gentry Press, 1934); The Hill (Duell, Sloan and Pearce, 1943); Down to Earth: Mapping for Everybody (Holiday House, 1944; revised and republished by University of Chicago Press as Mapping, 1964); Love in Dishevelment (Creative Age Press, 1948); Watch the Tides (Holiday House, 1961); and The Writer on His Own (University of New Mexico Press, 1971). He also published several articles for children under the pseudonym Mark Sawyer.

    Scope and Content of Collection

    The Helen Gentry and David Greenhood Papers, 1748-1988 (bulk 1930-1980) contain materials relating to Gentry's career as a printer and designer, and Greenhood's work as a writer. The Helen Gentry Papers comprise Gentry's personal and professional correspondence, mock-ups and notes for her printing and design projects, and records from her work with Holiday House. Her writings include published articles and speeches. The collection also includes awards, reviews, programs, and publications related to Gentry's work, as well as her small collection of fine printing specimens and ephemera. Projects represented span her early work as Helen Gentry Press, her designs for major New York publishing houses, her contributions to Holiday House, and her later freelance work from New Mexico. The David Greenhood Papers primarily consist of correspondence and writings, including many unpublished drafts of novels, poems, and other works. The collection also includes material related to Greenhood's editorial work at Holiday House, and papers from Porter Garnett and W. W. Lyman.