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Merian C. Cooper military papers, 1911-1977

Identifier: MSS 2008 Series 3

Scope and Contents

Contains correspondence, documents, publications, photographs, and memorabilia covering all aspects of Cooper's military career, including the Mexican border campaign, World War I, the American Relief Administration, the Russo-Polish War, World War II, post-retirement, and Cooper's own research materials on the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor. Materials date from 1911 to 1977.


  • 1911-1977


Conditions Governing Access

Open for public research.

Conditions Governing Use

It is the responsibility of the researcher to obtain any necessary copyright clearances. Permission to use material from this collection must be obtained from Reference Services at

Biographical / Historical

Merian Caldwell Cooper was an American aviator, United States Air Force and Polish Air Force officer, adventurer, screenwriter, film director, and producer. He was a notable movie producer, starting with documentaries filmed with Ernest B. Schoedsack while traveling the world, most famously Grass and Chang. Cooper was a member of the board of directors of Pan American Airways. During his film career, he worked for several Hollywood studios. He is considered co-inventor of the Cinerama film projection process. Cooper's most famous film was the 1933 movie King Kong. He was awarded an honorary Oscar for lifetime achievement in 1952 and received a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame in 1960. Cooper married film actress Dorothy Jordan in 1933. They were married until his death on April 21, 1973.


25 folders

4 boxes

6 oversize folders

1 sound cassettes

2 sound discs

1 scrapbook

2 photographs

2 oversize boxes

Language of Materials



Arranged into six subseries: 1. Merian C. Cooper papers on the Punitive Expedition into Mexico, 1916-1917. 2. Merian C. Cooper papers on World War I, 1916-1973. 3. Merian C. Cooper papers on American Relief Administration, 1919-1920. 4. Merian C. Cooper papers on Russo-Polish War, 1919-1980. 5. Merian C. Cooper papers on World War II, 1917-1977. 6. Merian C. Cooper papers on post-retirement activities, 1911-1977.

Repository Details

Part of the L. Tom Perry Special Collections Repository

1130 HBLL
Brigham Young University
Provo Utah 84602 United States