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Document Details


Title: Reminiscences of Bennett Alfred Cerf
RLIN number: NXCP87-A60
Document type: Oral history
Accessibility: Free Only
Repository: Columbia University. Oral History Research Office
Collection: Individual Interview List Oral History Project
Description: Childhood and education in New York City; Columbia College; SPECTATOR, JESTER; journalism; Wall Street; Boni & Liveright; purchase of Modern Library; partnership with Donald Klopfer; travels and meetings with European authors; marriage to Sylvia Sidney; trip to Russia; building up Random House; contacts with authors, editors, other publishers; marriage to Phyllis Fraser; World War II publishing; TRY AND STOP ME and later books; magazine columns, radio programs, lecture tours; paperbacks, reprints, Bantam books, "What's My Line?"; role of an editor in a publishing house; dictionary and its promotion; purchase of other publishing houses; Singer, Knopf; stock issue, going public, 1959; purchase by Radio Corporation of America, 1965; educational developments, teaching machines; juvenile lists; spurt of growth in all publishing after World War II; purchase of Pantheon; foreign contacts; Peabody Awards Committee; director of Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer; Miss America pageant; Famous Writers School; many anecdotes about well known personalities in literary and entertainment fields.
Extent: Transcript: 1,029 leaves, Tape: 16 reels
Restrictions: Access: Written permission required from Mrs. Robert F. Wagner. Permission required to cite, quote, and reproduce. Contact repository for information.
Original Language: English
Time span: Not indicated ... to 1968 (Year of interview)
Speaker: Cerf, Bennett Alfred, 1898-1971
Speaker gender: Male
Speaker date of birth: 1898
Speaker occupation: Publisher
Age at speaking: 70
Document date: 1968
Interviewer: Hawkins, Robbin
Locations discussed: North America; United States
Topics discussed - ASP terms: American literature--20th century; Authors; Book industries and trade; Consolidation and merger of corporations; North America; Popular culture--United States; Publishers and publishing; United States
Topics discussed - Other terms: Cerf, Bennett Alfred, 1898-1971; Klopfer, Donald; Random House; Sidney, Sylvia
ASP release: 2005-06
Document code: OHI0018377-13820