Skip to main content
Go to accessibility options


    With Garth Williams' Original Working List of Possible Illustrations for Charlotte's Web

    Garth Williams. Williams' working list of illustrations, and other miscellaneous papers, Charlotte's Web.

    Garth Williams. Miscellaneous papers regarding Charlotte's Web, 1952, including Williams' own list of illustrations and correspondence from Harper & Brothers to Williams. This lot contains nine sheets, including: Sketch of Fern for dust jacket in pencil on tracing paper. Approximately 10.5 x 6.75 inches. Initialed by Williams at lower right. Appears to be a mock-up design, with old tears, spots of foxing, and minor dampstaining. Generally very good. [and:] Garth Williams' working list of his Charlotte's Web illustrations, with "Own list" in pencil at top left. A typed list with several notations in Williams' hand, in pencil and ink. On standard letter-size paper. A fascinating look at Williams' process in determining what he had planned to illustrate, with captions and page reference numbers. Williams' list has an initial estimation of fifty-two illustrations (forty-six were ultimately used). As can be seen in a number of the preliminary drawings offered in this auction, many had illustration numbers assigned to them that were later changed. [and:] Two-page typed letter from Mary Russell, secretary to Harper's children's book editor Ursula Nordstrom, to Garth Williams, dated June 30, 1952. On standard letter-size paper, with Harper & Brothers letterhead. Russell writes to Williams on behalf of Nordstrom, forwarding notes from E. B. White: "Except for a few points, he is delighted with the pictures, as we were sure he would be." After noting a couple of White's concerns, Russell ends the letter warmly and enthusiastically: "If I may add a personal bit, I think these are 'SOME PICTURES!'" From the Estate of Garth Williams.

    More Information:

    This lot also contains the following: Large sheet of mostly blank tracing paper, with mock-up borders, possibly for a dust jacket. Sheet is folded. Approximately 14 x 16.5 inches. Initialed by Williams at lower left corner of left-side panel. With Williams' pencil notation "Charlotte's Webb 1/2 off" at top of sheet. With old chips, creases, and very faint moisture splotch. [and:] Four sheets measuring 10.875 x 8.5 inches: one is blank except for the word "Possibilities" in Williams' hand at the top and his initials at lower right; a sheet containing fractions under headings "height," "spine," and "front"; a sheet containing only a penciled border and what appears to be a Roman numeral "V" with Williams' initials at lower right; and a sheet that contains notes on automobiles and drawings of luggage racks, most likely notes for a forthcoming purchase for the Williams family. All fine.

    Auction Info

    Auction Dates
    April, 2011
    7th-9th Thursday-Saturday
    Bids + Registered Phone Bidders: 4
    Lot Tracking Activity: N/A
    Page Views: 802

    Buyer's Premium per Lot:
    19.5% of the successful bid (minimum $14) per lot.

    Sold on Apr 7, 2011 for: Sign-in or Join (free & quick)
    Track Item

    Heritage membership

    Join Now - It's Free

    1. Past Auction Values (prices, photos, full descriptions, etc.)
    2. Bid online
    3. Free Collector newsletter
    4. Want List with instant e-mail notifications
    5. Reduced auction commissions when you resell your
    Consign now
    • Cash Advances
    • More Bidders
    • Trusted Experts
    • Over 200,000 Satisfied Consignors Since 1976
    Consign to the 2022 May 1 Spring Luxury Accessories Signature® Auction .

    Learn about consigning with us

    The resulting auction of my property overwhelmed me. I want to thank Tom Slater and the Heritage team for a very satisfactory experience and profitable result with my historical consignment.
    Henry L.,
    Lexington, KY
    View More Testimonials receives more traffic than any other auction house website. (Source:

    Video tutorial

    Getting the most out of search