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Merian C. Cooper family correspondence, 1915-1973

Identifier: MSS 2008 Series 13 Sub-Series 1

Scope and Contents

Contains correspondence between Cooper and his family, including his father, brother, wife, and children. Materials date from between 1915 and 1973.


  • 1915-1973


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 History

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.

Biographical History

Dorothy Jordan was born August 9, 1906, in Clarksville, Tennessee, to Theresa Harrison and Edward Peter Jordan. After starting in Broadway, Dorothy became a film actress in Hollywood, beginning with “Taming of the Shrew” in 1929. In 1933, Dorothy married film director and producer Merian C. Cooper, and they were married until his death in 1973. Dorothy retired from acting in 1956. She died in Los Angeles on December 7, 1988.


1 box

8 folders

1 sound cassette

6 sound discs

Language of Materials



Arranged in two subseries: 1. Merian C. Cooper correspondence with John C. Cooper, Sr. and John C. Cooper, Jr., 1915-1933, 1961-1967. 2. Merian C. Cooper correspondence with Dorothy Jordan and family, 1939-1973.

Subseries also contains some uncategorized materials.

Repository Details

Part of the L. Tom Perry Special Collections Repository

1130 HBLL
Brigham Young University
Provo Utah 84602 United States