Guide to the Papers of Dan Sprod

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MS 8429

National Library of Australia View Catalogue Record

Collection Summary

Creator
Dan Sprod
Title
Papers of Dan Sprod
Date Range
1938-2009
Collection Number
MS 8429
Extent
8.28 metres (39 boxes, 4 folio boxes, 1 file)
Language of Materials
English
Repository
National Library of Australia

Introduction

Scope and Contents

The collection contains material on the Blubber Head Press and Sprod's career as a librarian (National Library of Australia and Morris Miller Library at the University of Tasmania) and author and editor of numerous books. There are also papers relating to his professional and research interests, including Tasmanian Arts Advisory Board, Tasmanian Historical Research Association, Allport Library and Museum of Fine Arts and the Taxation for the Arts Scheme.

The papers include correspondence, research material, notes, handwritten drafts, typescripts, financial papers, minutes of meetings and reports.

Conditions Governing Access

Please refer to the collection's catalogue record for the access conditions (http://nla.gov.au/nla.cat-vn2946476).

Conditions Governing Use

Copying and publishing of unpublished manuscript material is subject to copyright restrictions. For such material, written permission to publish must be obtained from the copyright holder(s). Copying of unpublished material for research purposes is permissible 50 years after the death of the creator of the material.

Preferred Citation

Items from this collection should be cited as '[Title or description of manuscript item], Papers of Dan Sprod, National Library of Australia, [class/series/file number]'.

Provenance

Dan Sprod presented the bulk of his papers to the National Library in 1990 under the Taxation Incentives for the Arts Scheme. Further papers were added in March 1999. Additions were also received in 2007 and 2010.

Biographical Note

Dan Sprod was born in South Australia in 1924. He served in the Royal Australian Navy (1942-46), attended Adelaide University and graduated Bachelor of Arts (1948-50), before joining the National Library in 1951. He held a number of senior positions, including Liaison Officer, New York (1957-60), Chief Cataloguer (1964-65) and Principal Librarian, User Services (1966). Upon leaving the National Library, he was appointed University Librarian, Morris Miller Library, University of Tasmania in 1966 and held this position until his resignation on 31 July 1976.

Sprod founded the Blubber Head Press in 1978 and became its manager. He was also the owner of the bookshop Astrolabe Books in Hobart, specialising in antiquarian books relating to Australia.

Dan Sprod has been active on committees in a range of areas associated with his professional and research interests. The many organisations with which he was associated include the Library Association of Australia, the Australian Advisory Council on Bibliographical Services, the Tasmanian Historical Research Association, the Allport Library and Museum of Fine Arts and the Tasmanian Arts Advisory Board.

Item Descriptions

Class MS 8429. Original Consignment

Series 1. Correspondence, 1973-90

This series contains correspondence relating mostly to Sprod's activities, including Keith Sinclair's paper delivered at the First Louis Triebel Memorial Lecture (University of Tasmania July 1986) entitled 'Laplace at Hobart Town and Sydney Town', the Early Imprints project, Chris Long's paper entitled 'The Frith Brothers, Tasmania photographic pioneers' and the Journal of Frederick Walker.

The correspondents include Keith Sinclair, Chris Long, James Bennett Group, Kenneth Hince, State Libraries of New South Wales, Tasmania and Victoria, the National Library and booksellers (such as Leo Berkelouw and Margareta Webber).

Other groups of correspondence may be found in Series 2, 5, 8, 9 and 10. Files 28 and 29 contain papers that were donated to the Library in March 1999.

Correspondence, 1976-78 (File 1-6) - Box 1 (MS 8429)
Correspondence concerning 'The cruise of the whaler Gipsy', 1987 (File 7) - Box 1 (MS 8429)
Correspondence concerning the Early Imprints project, 1983-84 (File 8) - Box 1 (MS 8429)
Correspondence with Chris Long concerning 'The Frith Brothers', 1983 (File 9) - Box 1 (MS 8429)
Correspondence concerning The great circle: journal of the Australian Association of Maritime History, 1980-82 (File 10) - Box 2 (MS 8429)
Correspondence concerning From Hudson Bay to Botany Bay, 1987-88 (File 11) - Box 2 (MS 8429)
Correspondence concerning miscellaneous projects, 1964-84 (File 12-14) - Box 2 (MS 8429)
Overseas trip, 1973 (File 15) - Box 2 (MS 8429)
Correspondence with Maggie Weidenhofer concerning Port Arthur: a place of misery, 1978-79 (File 16) - Box 2 (MS 8429)
Correspondence concerning the publicity of Blubber Head Press publications, 1979-84 (File 17-23) - Box 2, 3 (MS 8429)
Correspondence with Keith Sinclair concerning his paper 'Laplace at Hobart Town and Sydney Town', 1987 (File 24) - Box 3 (MS 8429)
Correspondence concerning Travellers under concern, 1979 (File 25) - Box 3 (MS 8429)
Correspondence concerning the journal of Frederick Walker, 1976 (File 26) - Box 3 (MS 8429)
Correspondence concerning With the pioneers, 1979-80 (File 27) - Box 3 (MS 8429)
Correspondence with James Dally, 1978-82 (File 28) - Box 24 (MS 8429)
Correspondence with Literature Board of the Australia Council, 1978-90 (File 29) - Box 24 (MS 8429)

Series 2. Blubber Head Press: correspondence, 1977-97

The series includes business correspondence, financial papers, research material, notes, drafts and mock-ups of books. Most of the books were published by Blubber Head Press.

The correspondents include Joanna Richards, Alan Andrews, Vivian Rae-Ellis, C. Craig, E. Bracegirdle, Australia Council, Kenneth Hince, Griffin Press, Tasmanian Arts Advisory Board and State Library of Tasmania.

Files 60 - 82 contain papers that were donated to the Library in March 1999.

Blaxland - Lawson - Wentworth, 1813 (1979), 1978-79 (File 1-3) - Box 4 (MS 8429)
A journey from Sydney to the Australian Alps (1979), 1978-81 (File 4-7) - Box 4 (MS 8429)
Louisa Anne Meredith: a tigress in exile (1979), 1977-83 (File 8-12) - Box 5 (MS 8429)
Mr Punch in Tasmania (1980), 1980-81 (File 13-14) - Box 5 (MS 8429)
The story of Port Dalrymple (1980), 1980-82 (File 15-16) - Box 6 (MS 8429)
Backhouse and Walker, 1824 (1981), 1981 (File 17-19) - Box 6 (MS 8429)
Hume and Hovell(1981), 1980-85 (File 20-21) - Box 6 (MS 8429)
Search for the Tasmanian tiger (1981), 1981-83 See also Series 3, Folio 11 (File 22-31) - Box 7 (MS 8429)
The Baudin expedition and the Tasmanian Aborigines, 1802 (1983), 1982-84 (File 32-37) - Box 8 (MS 8429)
Kennedy, the Barcoo and Beyond (1983), 1982-84 (File 38-40) - Box 8 (MS 8429)
The devil's wilderness (1984), 1982-84 (File 41-42) - Box 9 (MS 8429)
Simpkinson de Wesselow (1984), 1981-85 (File 43-45) - Box 9 (MS 8429)
Stapylton with Major Mitchell's Australia Felix Expedition, 1836 (1986), 1986-87 (File 46-47) - Box 9 (MS 8429)
Weep in silence (1987), 1986-87 (File 48-55) - Box 10 (MS 8429)
The Tregurtha log (1980), 1977-84 (File 56-59) - Box 11 (MS 8429)
Louisa Anne Meredith: a tigress in exile (Reprinted by Tasmania Government Printing Office in 1990), 1990-94 (File 60) - Box 24 (MS 8429)
Pioneers of the West Coast (1988), 1987-91 (File 61) - Box 24 (MS 8429)
Down Wapping: Hobart's vanished wapping and old wharf districts (1988), 1986-89 (File 62) - Box 24 (MS 8429)
Proud intrepid heart: Leichhardt's first attempt to the Swan River, 1846-47 (1989), 1976-97 (File 63-64) - Box 24, 25 (MS 8429)
Open to talent: the centenary history of the University of Tasmania, 1890-1990 (Published by University of Tasmania in 1990), 1988-97 (File 65-66) - Box 25 (MS 8429)
The convict probation system, Van Diemen's land 1839-1854... (1990), 1990-91 (File 67) - Box 25 (MS 8429)
Jorgen Jorgenson and the Aborigines of Van Diemen's Land... (1991) (File 68-70) - Box 25 (MS 8429)
The Whitehead letters: Tasmanian society and politics 1871-1882... (Edited by Michael Sprod and published by Tasmanian Historical Research Association in 1991), 1990-92 (File 71) - Box 25 (MS 8429)
Cascade: a taste of history (Published by Cascade Brewery in 1992), 1991-92 (File 72-73) - Box 26 (MS 8429)
Tasmanian insights: essays by Geoffrey Stilwell (Published by the State Library of Tasmania in 1992), 1989-92 (File 74-77) - Box 26 (MS 8429)
Letters and papers of G.P. Harris, 1803-1812 (Published by Arden Press in 1994), 1993-94 (File 78) - Box 26 (MS 8429)
A mortal flame: Marie Bjelke Petersen (1994), 1994-96 (File 79-82) - Box 26, 27 (MS 8429)

Series 3. Blubber Head Press: drafts of publications

This series includes handwritten drafts, typescripts, printer's proofs and notes relating to Blubber Head Press publications.

Blaxland - Lawson - Wentworth, 1813 (1979) (File 1-3) - Box 11 (MS 8429)
Louisa Ann Meredith (1979) (File 4) - Box 12 (MS 8429)
The Tregurtha log (1980) (File 5-17) - Box 12, 13 + Folio-Box 1 (MS 8429)
Search for the Tasmanian tiger (File 18) - Box 13 + Folio-Box 2 (MS 8429)
The Baudin expedition and the Tasmanian Aborigines, 1802 (1983) (File 19-23) - Box 13, 14 + Folio-Box 2 (MS 8429)
Kennedy, the Barcoo and beyond (1983) (File 24-27) - Box 14 + Folio-Box 3 (MS 8429)
Simpkinson de Wesselow (1984) (File 28-32) - Box 14, 15 + Folio-Box 3 (MS 8429)
Stapylton with Major Mitchell's Australia Felix expedition (1986) (File 33-40) - Box 15 + Folio-Box 4 (MS 8429)
Pioneer of Tasmania's West coast (1988) (File 41-42) - Box 15 (MS 8429)

Series 4. Blubber Head Press Miscellaneous, 1972-97

This series comprises correspondence, notes, drafts and cuttings relating to various publication proposals and requests from the general public to publish their books. The correspondents include Alan E.J. Andrews, Susan Chamberlain and the general public.

Files 3 - 14 contain papers that were donated to the Library in March 1999.

Papers relating to the 'Todd journal' (File 1, 5-7) - Box 15 (MS 8429)
Papers relating to the proposed publication of 'Colonial Queensland' (File 2) - Box 15 (MS 8429)
Correspondence with Alan E.J. Andrews concerning Kosciusko: the mountain in history, 1980-82 (File 3) - Box 27 (MS 8429)
Correspondence with Susan Chamberlain concerning a proposal to publish her thesis on the Hobart whaling industry, 1987-89 (File 4) - Box 27 (MS 8429)
Notes and drafts for the 'Todd journal' (File 5-7) - Box 27 (MS 8429)
Notes and correspondence, 1981-97, concerning various 'tentative projects'. Some of the projects were never completed (File 8-10) - Box 27, 28 (MS 8429)
Miscellaneous correspondence of Blubber Head Press, 1972-94 (File 11-13) - Box 28 (MS 8429)
Miscellaneous correspondence of Blubber Head Press, 1981-96 (File 14) - Box 28 (MS 8429)

Series 5. Books by Dan Sprod: correspondence, 1975-80

Sprod has written five books entitled Victorian and Edwardian Hobart from old photographs (Sydney: J. Ferguson, 1977) and Alexander Pearce of Macquarie Harbour (Hobart: Cat & Fiddle, 1977). The series comprises correspondence with the two publishers, proofs and financial papers.

Correspondence relating to published books (File 1-4) - Box 16 (MS 8429)

Series 6. Books by Dan Sprod: drafts

This series includes typescripts, notes and research material relating to Victorian and Edwardian Hobart from old photographs and Alexander Pearce of Macquarie Harbour.

Drafts of published books (File 1-3) - Box 16 (MS 8429)

Series 7. Tasmanian Arts Advisory Board, 1982-90

Sprod was the Chairman of the Literature Panel of the Tasmanian Arts Advisory Board (1982-88) and also a member of the Tasmanian Writers Union and the National Book Council. This series includes minutes of meetings and applications for grants.

Literature Panel: meetings, 1982-87 (File 1-15) - Box 17, 18 (MS 8429)
State Community Literature Officer's Management Committee meetings, 1985-90 (File 16-21) - Box 19 (MS 8429)
Tasmanian Arts Advisory Board: meetings, 1985-88 (File 22-38) - Box 19, 20, 21 (MS 8429)
Applications for grants (File 39-43) - Box 21, 22 (MS 8429)

Series 8. Tasmanian Historical Research Association, 1971-84

Sprod was the Chairman and a Council member of the Tasmanian Historical Research Association. The papers in this series include minutes of meetings, committee reports and correspondence relating to three titles published by the Association, namely Governors' ladies (1987), The Journal of Charles O'Hara Booth (1981) and Sam Thomas and his neighbours (1975).

Minutes of meetings, miscellaneous correspondence and reports, 1977-79 (File 1-3) - Box 22 (MS 8429)
Papers relating to The journal of Charles O'Hara Booth, 1980-84 (File 4-7) - Box 22, 23 (MS 8429)
Papers relating to 'Sam Thomas and his neighbours', 1971-73 (File 8) - Box 23 (MS 8429)
Papers relating to 'The Governors' ladies' (File 9) - Box 23 (MS 8429)
Papers relating to A Solomons sojourn, 1977-78 (File 10-11) - Box 23 (MS 8429)

Series 9. National Library of Australia, 1955-64

Sprod joined the staff of the National Library in 1951. He held various senior positions, including Liaison Officer, New York (1957-60), Chief Cataloguer (1965-65) and Principal Librarian, User Services (1966). This series includes correspondence, reports and conference papers.

National Library of Australia (File 1-2) - Box 23 (MS 8429)

Series 10. Allport Library and Museum of Fine Arts, 1985-88

In 1985 Sprod was invited by the Tasmanian Minister of Education, John Beswick, to serve as a member of the Allport Library and Museum of Fine Arts Management Committee.

The series includes correspondence with the Department of Education, agenda and minutes of meetings, and copies of State Library of Tasmania's annual report.

Allport Library and Museum of Fine Arts (File 1-2) - Box 24 (MS 8429)

Series 11. Morris Miller Library, University of Tasmania, 1966-75

Sprod was appointed University Librarian of the Morris Miller Library at the University of Tasmania in 1966 and held this position until his resignation in 1976. The series contains some copies of his correspondence during this period.

Files 1,2 and 5 contain papers that were donated to the Library in March 1999.

Correspondence, 1966-73 (File 1-2) - Box 28 (MS 8429)
Correspondence, 1971-73 (File 3-4) - Box 29 (MS 8429)
Correspondence, 1971-75 (File 5) - Box 29 (MS 8429)

Series 12. Publishing consultant, 1979-85

The series contains notes, drafts and correspondence relating to Sprod's activities as publishing consultant.

Correspondence with Andrew David concerning H.M.S. Herald Project, 1985 (File 1) - Box 29 (MS 8429)
Typescript of The history of the Tasmanian Royal Botanical Gardens, 1818-1986 by Marcus Harburgh (File 2) - Box 29 (MS 8429)
Photocopy and part of a transcript of Rev. Knopwood's diary kept on a voyage from Portsmouth to Port Jackson in 1803, sent to Sprod by Maggs Brothers of London, 1982 (File 3) - Box 29 (MS 8429)
Drafts and correspondence relating to The Hutchins School, Macquarie Street years, 1816-1965 by Geoffrey Stephens, 1978-79 (File 4-5) - Box 29 (MS 8429)
Drafts, notes and correspondence with W.N. Oats concerning The rose and the waratah, 1979-83 (File 6) - Box 30 (MS 8429)

Series 13. Taxation Incentives for the Arts Scheme, 1979-95

Sprod was a valuer for the Taxation Incentives for the Arts Scheme (now known as the Cultural Gifts Program). The series comprises papers relating to this activity.

Files 2-8 contain papers that were donated to the Library in March 1999.

Valuation of the Van Diemen's Land Company records, 1988-89 (File 1) - Box 30 (MS 8429)
Valuation of the Mt. Lyell Company records, 1985 (File 2-4) - Box 30 (MS 8429)
T.I.A.S. valuations, 1979-95 (File 5-8) - Box 30, 31 (MS 8429)

Series 14. Other papers, 1976-95

The series comprises papers documenting Sprod's other activities, including his involvement with the Australian Book Publishers Association, Federation of Australian Historical Societies and Industries Assistance Commission. The papers include correspondence, cuttings, notes and photographs.

Files 1, 4-6, 8 and 10-11 contain papers that were donated to the Library in March 1999.

Art works for Sprod's book (File 1) - Box 31 (MS 8429)
Australian Bicentennial Authority, 1988 (File 2) - Box 31 (MS 8429)
Australian Book Publishers Association and photographs of Sprod (File 3) - Box 31 (MS 8429)
Australian Book Publishers Association: statistics, 1988-94 (File 4) - Box 31 (MS 8429)
Australian Book Publishers Association: leaflets, 1991-94 (File 5) - Box 31 (MS 8429)
Australian Book Publishers Association: AGM papers, 1993 (File 6) - Box 31 (MS 8429)
Exhibition at Australia House, London (n.d.) (File 7) - Box 31 (MS 8429)
Federation of Australian Historical Societies, 1985-89 (File 8) - Box 32 (MS 8429)
Industries Assistance Commission. Inquiry into Book Production, 1985 (File 9) - Box 32 (MS 8429)
Tasmanian Historical Research Association: correspondence concerning its cumulative index, 1991-95 (File 10) - Box 32 (MS 8429)
Talks on book collecting and rare books, 1976 (File 11-12) - Box 32 (MS 8429)
Photographs (File 14) - Box 32 (MS 8429)
Miscellaneous papers of Cat and Fiddle Press, 1977-78 (File 15) - Box 32 (MS 8429)

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