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Merian C. Cooper personal papers, 1922-1980

Identifier: MSS 2008 Series 1

Scope and Contents

Contains correspondence, photographs, sound recordings, and publications from 1922 to 1980 about Merian C. Cooper's family and that of his wife, Dorothy Jordan. There are also biographical sketches and articles about Cooper and about his funeral. Various personal records such as passports, club memberships, and obituaries are also found here.


  • 1922-1980


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.


1 box

2 oversize folders

5 folders

2 sound tape reels

Language of Materials



Arranged in six subseries: 1. Cooper family records, 1922-1972. 2. Publicity papers on Merian C. Cooper, 1929-1977. 3. Obituary, funeral, and memorial service papers for Merian C. Cooper, 1973. 4. Merian C. Cooper and Dorothy Cooper financial papers, 1933-1983. 5. Cooper family certificates, passports, and other material, 1924-1980. 6. Merian C. Cooper home movies, 1934-1963.

Repository Details

Part of the L. Tom Perry Special Collections Repository

1130 HBLL
Brigham Young University
Provo Utah 84602 United States