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Ann M. Martin papers

Identifier: MRBC-MS-00357

Scope and Contents

The Ann M. Martin papers consist primarily of her own writing. Types of materials in each series may include: outlines, synopses, drafts, edits, revisions, proofs, mock-ups, flap copy, book cover / dust jackets, illustrations / artwork, digital formats, publicity, book reviews, book or other awards, photographs, correspondence, and scrapbooks.

Holograph refers to writing in Ann Martin’s own hand. Typescript refers to pages typed using either a typewriter or a computer. Outlines will sometimes include notes, ideas, and preliminary materials. Synopses will sometimes include chapter outlines, plot, and character descriptions. Drafts are generally an entire manuscript written out from beginning to end; drafts often have some editorial markings or annotations.

A number of abbreviations are used, including BSC (Baby-sitters Club), LS (Little Sisters), and AM (Ann M. Martin). The 2023 addition to the collection includes a small amount of biographical material, promotional material, and letters from fans.

Dates of Materials

  • Creation: 1974 - 2020


Conditions Governing Access

This collection is open for use without restriction beyond the standard terms and conditions of Smith College Special Collections.

Conditions Governing Use

To the extent that she owns copyright, Ann M. Martin has retained copyright in her works donated to Smith College. Copyright in other items in this collection may be held by their respective creators. For reproductions of materials that are governed by fair use as defined under U. S. Copyright Law, no permission to cite or publish is required. For those few instances beyond fair use, or which may regard materials in the collection not created by Ann M. Martin, researchers are responsible for determining who may hold materials' copyrights and obtaining approval from them. Researchers do not need anything further from Smith College Special Collections to move forward with their use.

Biographical / Historical

Ann Matthews Martin was born on August 12, 1955. She grew up in Princeton, New Jersey, with her parents and her younger sister, Jane. Her father, Henry Martin, is a well-known cartoonist, and he illustrated several of Ms. Martin’s books. Upon graduating from Smith College in 1977, Ms. Martin worked as an elementary school teacher at a private school in Connecticut. After a year of teaching, she changed careers and took a job in the publishing industry, working as an editor of children's books. Working in publishing gave Ms. Martin the inclination, as well as the opportunity, to begin writing her own children’s and young adult fiction. She is now a full-time writer.

Ms. Martin gets the ideas for her books from many different places. Some are based on personal experiences, actual childhood events, and memories. In many of her books, she tackles contemporary problems or issues. She takes on subject matter as varied as cancer, death, divorce, re-marriage, drinking, drugs, bullying, kidnapping and dating. All of Ms. Martin’s characters, even the members of the Baby-sitters Club, are fictional, but many of her characters are based on real people. Sometimes Ms. Martin names her characters after people she knows, and other times she simply chooses names that she likes.

Ms. Martin has always enjoyed writing. Even before she was old enough to write, she would dictate stories to her mother to write down for her. Some of her favorite authors during her childhood were Lewis Carroll, P. L. Travers, Hugh Lofting, Astrid Lindgren, and Roald Dahl. These authors, and others, inspired her to become a writer herself.

Starting in the early 1980s, Ms. Martin was hired for a handful of projects whereby she wrote books that accompanied popular TV series and movies. During this time she also wrote several award-winning books of her own. The first Baby-Sitters Club book was published in 1986. Since finishing that highly successful series, as well as the many spin-off series—which included the BSC Mysteries, Baby-sitters Little Sisters, The Kids in Ms. Colman’s Class, and California Diaries — her writing has again concentrated on single novels, several of which are collaborations with other authors. She is also the author of The Doll People books (written with Laura Godwin), A Dog's Life, Everything For a Dog, and the Newbery Award-winning A Corner of the Universe.

After living in New York City for many years, Ms. Martin moved to the Hudson Valley in upstate New York where she now lives with her dog, Sadie, and her cats, Gussie, Pippin and Simon. During any free time she may have she enjoys reading, sewing, and needlework.


0.000632 Gigabytes

27.313 linear feet (57 containers)

Language of Materials



Ann M. Martin graduated from Smith College in 1977. She took a position in the publishing industry working as an editor of children's books which eventually lead her to write her own children's and young adult fiction. Her papers include outlines, synopses, drafts, edits, revisions, proofs, mock-ups, flap copy, book covers/dust jackets, illustrations/artwork, digital formats, publicity, book reviews, book awards, photographs, and correspondence.


The various series of books and corresponding papers are arranged in chronological order by publication date and identified by published title (although in many cases there are working titles and many items are not dated).

Organized into thirteen series: I. Baby-sitters Club Books. II. Baby-sitters Club Little Sisters Books. III. Baby-sitters Club Mysteries. IV. Baby-sitters Club California Diaries. V. The Kids in Ms. Coleman's Class. VI. Baby-sitters Club Portrait Collection. VII. Baby-sitters Club Super Specials. VIII. Baby-sitters Club Friends Forever. IX. Baby-sitters Club Extras. X. Main Street Series. XI. Other works. XII. Foreign language editions. XIII. Audio Visual.

Physical Characteristics and Technical Requirements

This collection contains materials received from the donor in digital form that are not currently available online. Please consult with Special Collections staff or email to request access to this digital content.

Other Finding Aids

A legacy finding aid with more detailed information about this collection is available in this downloadable document: finding aid to the Ann M. Martin papers.

Immediate Source of Acquisition

Gift; Ann M. Martin (Smith College Class of 1977), 2013. Additional material was gifted in 2020, 2021, and 2023.

Processing Information

The contents of computer media in this collection has been copied to networked storage for preservation and access; the original directory and file structure was retained and file lists were created. Some floppy disks were unable to be copied. See the log files linked in the container list for more details.

Finding aid to the Ann M. Martin papers
Legacy Finding Aid (Updated)
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Script of description

Revision Statements

  • 2019-10-22: Updated legacy finding aid and published.
  • 2019-10-29: Imported container inventory
  • 2020-07-22: Description added for born-digital content.
  • 2021-01-29: Accession 2020-M-0021 added
  • 2021-06-09: Added Accession 2021-M-0054

Repository Details

Part of the Mortimer Rare Book Collection Repository

Neilson Library
7 Neilson Drive
Northampton MA 01063