David Donald Delafield. Papers, 1942-2003

Collection Overview

Title: David Donald Delafield. Papers, 1942-2003

Record Series: 14/04/02/02

Creator: David Donald Delafield

Date: 1942-2003

Extent: 3.17 linear feet, 6 boxes

Repository: Special Collections and University Archives, Rod Library, University of Northern Iowa.

Language: This material is entirely in English.

Access and Use

Accessing the Collection:

There are no restrictions on the use of this material.

Preferred Citation: [Identification of item] in the David Donald Delafield Papers, 1942-2003, Archives Record Series 14/02/14, [box and folder number], University Archives, Rod Library, University of Northern Iowa

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Historical Note

David Donald Delafield was born April 7, 1920, in East Aurora, New York, son of Edgar Trevor and Maude S. Stotts Delafield. He married Mary Perdue. He later married Marianna Cryberg.

Professor Delafield received his B. F. A. (1945), M. F. A. (1946), and Ph. D. (1952) degrees from Ohio State University in Columbus, Ohio. He taught at Washington State University in Pullman, Washington, from 1946 through 1949. He joined the faculty of the Iowa State Teachers College (now the University of Northern Iowa) on a temporary basis in 1951 and on a regular basis in 1952. He was among the first art faculty to join the staff with a liberal arts background and without grade or high school teaching experience. He advanced through the professorial ranks and taught until 1983, when he assumed emeritus status. He was a World War II veteran of the US Army Air Corps.

He died December 26, 2003, at the Cedar Falls Lutheran Home. 

Scope and Content

After Professor Delafield's death, his widow, Marianna Cryberg Delafield, gave a collection of his material to the University Museum. Staff from the Museum, the UNI Gallery of Art, and the Rod Library Special Collections and University Archives inspected the collection. After discussion, the representatives from each area decided that, in order to provide the best care for the material, the collection would be divided. Material would go to the area that would be best suited to preserve it and make it available for research.

The portion that was to come to the University Archives arrived in December 2007. This material consists primarily of biographical information; notes taken by Professor Delafield while he was studying at Ohio State University; sketchbooks; sketches; and correspondence from Professor Delafield to his first wife, Mary Perdue. 


Box 1

Biographical and personnel file information, including: autobiographical notes; statements on Professor Delafield's views of his art; exhibition catalogues; and newspaper clippings

Correspondence received by the Delafields


Essay on art and society

Notes on sculpture

Essay on movement

Notes on an elementary art program, circa 1952

Figure composition, abstract of M. A. thesis, 1946

University examination booklets

Ohio State University Commencement booklets, 1946, 1952

Notes taken in university classes

Box 2

Notes taken in university classes


Box 3



Box 4

Correspondence from Professor Delafield to his first wife, Mary Perdue. These letters are undated but were likely written when Professor Delafield was studying for his doctoral degree at Ohio State University. This correspondence provides a good look at both his daily student life as well as at his concerns for his family, who stayed at home while he was on campus. Some letters are incomplete.

Box 5


Box 6

Painting by David Delafield, about 15" X 18", depicting a kingfisher:  produced about 1970 for an art show and sale to benefit the Democratic Party of Waterloo, Iowa

Processing Information

Papers processed by Gerald L. Peterson, Special Collections Librarian and University Archivist; finding aid prepared by Gerald L. Peterson, January 2008. Updated by Library Associate Dave Hoing, January 2018 and April 2018. Linear feet updated September 11, 2017.

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