Estate Jella Lepman / Archive International Youth Library

Jella Lepman was the director of the International Youth Library from 1949 to 1957. After her death at the end of 1970, the International Youth Library gained manuscripts of her talks, presentations and good night stories for children. The written correspondence from her directorship years is preserved in the house archive of the International Youth Library, and features letters Lepman wrote to Erich Kästner, Eleanor Roosevelt, Lisa Tetzner and Carl Zuckmayer, among others.

Jella Lepman’s personal library is also part of the archive. It contains important children’s books of the 1950s and 1960s as well as texts featuring political and feminist themes, which give a glimpse into Jella Lepman’s special areas of interest.

The archival materials were made accessible in the central union catalogue for estates and autographs Kalliope with funding from the German Research Foundation. 

Further documents concerning the early times of the International Youth Library, can be found in the archives of the Rockefeller Foundation, at the Rockefeller Archive Center: