SKU: A01388 Category:


Description: A fantastic World War II era letter on fascinating letterhead! In this June 22, 1942 typed letter signed, Arms attempts to persuade artist Federico Castellon to volunteer to design a poster for the Office of Civilian Defense. He states:

“Dear Mr. Castellon:

Since talking with you on the telephone the other day, I have had a call for two more artists to make poster designs under the title of ‘War Town Meeting’ for the Office of Civilian Defense in Washington. Artists for Victory already has done three such posters, one by Gordon Grant, one by Cathal O’Toole, and one by Stow Wengenroth on this same theme. Of thes [sic] two additional ones would care to ‘warm up’ so to speak on the other? The reason I put it that way is because there is no money in this particular thing but is volunteer work entirely. Production and national distribustion [sic] by the O.C.D. are, however, guaranteed, and the artist’s name appears on each poster, of course. In other words, it is good publicity if not remunerative.

Thinking that you might possibly be interested to start with this as a first step toward future and more profitable work, I have taken the liberty of mentioning your name to the New York representative of the Ordnance Department who has charge of the whole Ordnance Dept. poster work. He has come to Artists for Victory in the past when the Department was in need of artists for this sort of work, in fact, Artists for Victory is doing two posters for him now, at $250.00 for each artist. I most earnestly recommended that he give your name first consideration should another such job present itself.

I hope that you will drop me a line if your [sic] are interested.

Very sincerely yours, John Taylor Arms”

This typed letter signed is on an 11″ x 8 1/2″ sheet of Artists for Victory, Incorporated imprinted stationery. The members listed on the left include many notable artists, eg. Paul Manship, Gifford Beal, Ernest Roth, Hugo Gellert, etc. Item #A01388

John Taylor Arms (1887-1953) is primarily known for his printmaking/etching prowess. He served as president of the Society of American Graphic Artists and was a member of the National Academy of Design.

Arms has signed in full, stamped his personal address and made a two-word correction in the typed text.

Condition: Mailing fold lines and a few errant small spots, otherwise very good.