Johnny Mercer contracts collection

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Johnny Mercer contracts collection

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Johnny Mercer's Contracts:

A Guide to the Collection at Georgia State University Library

Georgia State University
Georgia State University Library
Special Collections and Archives
100 Decatur St., SE
Atlanta, GA 30303-3202
Fax: 404-413-2881

May 6, 2008

Profile Description

Creation: EAD version 2002 finding aid created in XMetaL 4.5 by William Hardesty, May 6, 2008.
Language: English

Collection Summary

Repository: Georgia State University Library, Special Collections and Archives, Atlanta
Creator:Mercer, Johnny
Title:Johnny Mercer contracts collection
Dates: 1933; 1939; 1952-1978
Quantity: 1.5 linear ft. (in 1 box)
Abstract:The collection consists of 24 contracts (dated 1933;1939; 1952-1971) signed by American lyricist Johnny Mercer (1909-1976), some with associated correspondence; and one contract signed by his son after his death.
Identification: M212

Scope and Content of the Collection

The collection (1933; 1939; 1952-1978) consists of 24 contracts signed by the American lyricist Johnny Mercer and one signed by his son, John J. (Jeff) Mercer. Primarily, the contracts concern individual songs, though one applies to songs published by Palm Springs Music Co., one to Mercer's work with composer Matty Malneck, one to his work with composer Bernard D. Hanighen, and two to the film Dangerous When Wet. Three contracts are not with Mercer personally, but his corporation, Commander Publications. A few of the contracts include associated correspondence.

A number of the contracts were associated with Vernon D. Wood, a Hollywood-based business manager (Wood graduated from Cornell University in 1923: Cornell Alumni News, July 1935).

11 pieces in the collection had been elaborately framed and were removed and rehoused.

Historical Note about Johnny Mercer

John Herndon Mercer (1909-1976), a native of Savannah, Georgia, was one of the foremost figures of 20th century American popular music. His song catalog includes many numbers that have become American classics, and his activities as lyricist, composer, performer and businessman span a period of nearly five decades.

Index Terms

This collection is indexed under the following headings in the Georgia State University Library online catalog (GIL). Researchers desiring materials about related topics, persons, or places should search the catalog using these headings.

Hanighen, Bernie, 1908-1976
Malneck, Matty
Mercer, Johnny, 1909-1976--Archives
Music business--United States
Popular music--Writing and publishing--United States--20th century


Restrictions on Access

Unrestricted access. All requests subject to limitations noted in departmental policies on reproduction.

Terms Governing Use and Reproduction

To quote in print, or otherwise reproduce in whole or in part in any publication, including on the Worldwide Web, any material from this collection, the researcher must obtain permission from (1) the owner of the physical property and (2) the holder of the copyright. Persons wishing to quote from this collection should consult the reference archivist to determine copyright holders for information in this collection. Reproduction of any item must contain the complete citation to the original.

Administrative Information


[item], [folder title], Johnny Mercer Contracts Collection, M212, Popular Music Collection. Special Collections and Archives, Georgia State University, Atlanta.

Acquisition Information

Purchased from Circa Savannah, LLC (1 Diamond Causeway, Suite 21-312, Savannah, Georgia 31406; Paige Grodecki, owner) in April 2008, and George Houle Rare Books and Autographs (7260 Beverly Blvd., Los Angeles, California 90036) in February 2011.

Processing Information

Processed by Stephen Zietz, May 2008. EAD finding aid created by William Hardesty.

Related Material

Related materials in this repository: Johnny Mercer Papers (M001), Johnny and Ginger Mercer Papers (M002), Popular Music Collection.

Separated Material

Separated material: Three pieces of sheet music inscribed by Mercer were transferred to the Popular Music Collection Signature Files.

See List of Separated Material following Detailed Description of the Collection.

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