Lloyd E. Cotsen Papers
Held at: Princeton University Library: Cotsen Children's Library [Contact Us]
This is a finding aid. It is a description of archival material held at the Princeton University Library: Cotsen Children's Library. Unless otherwise noted, the materials described below are physically available in their reading room, and not digitally available through the web.
Overview and metadata sections
The Lloyd Cotsen papers primarily consist of personal effects once belonging to Lloyd Cotsen related to his varied interests. Lloyd Cotsen (1929-2017), class of 1950 at Princeton University, was the president, chief executive officer, and chairman of the board of Neutrogena Corporation until he sold the company to Johnson and Johnson in 1994. After selling the company, Cotsen devoted much of his time to philanthropic endeavors related to his collection interests including: archaeology, children's books, Japanese bamboo baskets, and textiles.
The first series includes material related to Cotsen's time at Neutrogena including personal and business effects, photo albums, awards, video cassettes related to the business, and Cotsen's contributions to Neutrogena's art collections and exhibitions (1949-2009).
The second series includes material documenting Cotsen's collection practices, exhibitions of his collection material, and the subsequent donation of his collections and philanthropic contributions to various organizations (1995-2021).
The third series comprises material which documents the production of Cotsen Occasional Press publications (1996-2018) including: Japanese Bamboo Baskets (1999), Early Chinese Textiles from the Lloyd Cotsen Collection (2015), The Box Project (2016), Education in the Earliest Schools (2008), and Lloyd Cotsen Study Collection of Chinese Bronze Mirrors (2012).
The fourth series comprises correspondence, personal notebooks, photographs, articles, and unpublished festschrifts in honor of Cotsen which are related to Cotsen's archaeological interests including excavations he participated in and financially contributed to, especially excavations at Urkesh in Syria (1952-2017).
The fifth series includes undated photographs taken by Cotsen on various subjects and at various geographic locations.
The sixth series includes various awards, memorabilia, gifts, prints, and artwork that Cotsen received across his lifetime (1965-2017).
The seventh series includes undated card files created by or for Cotsen detailing business contacts, art and antiquity dealers, restaurants, hotels, and places of interest in various US states and cities; business contacts, art and antiquity dealers, restaurants, hotels, and places of interest in various countries; an incomplete card catalog of Cotsen Children's Library purchases; a file containing material related to Cotsen's retirement; and a file containing miscellaneous recipes. All cards are arranged in alphabetical order.
The Lloyd Cotsen Papers were arranged by Lyssa C. Stapleton, Curator of the Cotsen Collection (1997-2021), in 2021. With the exception of seperated material, and the reassignment of box numbers as a result, Stapleton's arrangment has been maintained. Material is generally arranged by box, so that thematically similar items are stored together. In other words, each box usually contains material related to one general subject and contains all the material related to that subject. Stapleton's list of box contents is available from Cotsen staff upon request (stored on a word document "Lloyd Cotsen Papers by box" in the Cotsen shared drive).
Gift of the Cotsen Foundation in April 2021
Audio-Visual material, particularly video cassettes including Betamax, VCR, and other formats are included in the first series "Lloyd Cotsen papers related to Neutrogena". All analog audiovisual media must be digitized to preservation-quality standards prior to use. Patrons may request digital copies of original analog media. Turn-around time for such requests will depend on the size and scope of the project. Requests should be directed to Public Services staff.
This collection was processed by Ian Dooley in March 2022. Finding aid written by Ian Dooley in April and July 2022.
Framed artwork and prints were unframed and the frames were discarded. Files related to art material "not-bought" were discared since they lack research value. Proofs and transparenies related to Cotsen Occasional Press publications were discarded since they lack research value. Museum exhibition ephemera was discarded since they lack research value. Most published books were discarded since they are not related to Cotsen Children's Library collection interests.
Published books related to soap and soap making were trasferred to the Cotsen Children's Library book collection durng 2022 processing in order to join similar material.
A handmade banner with "Lloyd Cotsen" mimicking the Neutrogena logo was trasferred to the Cotsen Curator's office by the curator in 2021.
- Collectors and collecting -- United States -- 20th century
- Executives -- United States -- 20th century
- Philanthropists -- United States -- 20th century
- Excavations (Archaeology) -- Syria -- Urkesh (Extinct city)
- Exhibitions -- Catalog and Collections
- Exhibitions -- Planning
- Cotsen Children's Library
- Finding Aid Author
- Ian Dooley
- Finding Aid Date
- Access Restrictions
The collection is open for research.
- Use Restrictions
Single copies may be made for research purposes. No further duplication of copies of material in the collection can be made when Princeton University Library does not own the original. Inquiries regarding publishing material from the collection should be directed to Special Collections Public Services staff through the Ask Us! form. The library has no information on the status of literary rights in the collection and researchers are responsible for determining any questions of copyright.
Materials included are related to Cotsen's time working at Neutrogena. Items include Cotsen's personal and business effects, photo albums, Neutrogena souvenirs and ephemera, awards and certificates given to Cotsen, and video cassettes related to the business. Material also includes documents related to Cotsen's contributions to Neutrogena's art collections and exhibitions as well as inventories of art stored at the Neutrogena offices (including documents related to art that Cotsen bought from Nuetrogena and added to his private collection after Johnson and Johnson bought Nuetrogrena in 1994).
Material is arranged by box so that like objects are stored together, but in no particular order.Physical Description
Material is arranged by box so that like objects are stored together, but in no particular order.
The material included documents Cotsen's collection practices, exhibitions of his collection material, the subsequent donation of his collections, and philanthropic contributions to various organizations. The bulk of the material is related to the traveling exhibtion "Masterworks of Form and Texture: Japanese Baskets from the Lloyd Cotsen Collection" and documents related to the Cotsen Textile Traces Study Collection.Physical Description
Comprises correspondence, production samples, proofs, photographs, and notes which document the production of Cotsen Occasional Press publications including: Japanese Bamboo Baskets (1999), Early Chinese Textiles from the Lloyd Cotsen Collection (2015), The Box Project (2016), Education in the Earliest Schools (2008), and Lloyd Cotsen Study Collection of Chinese Bronze Mirrors (2012).
Records pertaining to each Cotsen Occasional Press title are each stored in their own box. Material in each box is in no particular order.Physical Description
Documents related to archaelogical sites that Cotsen visited and financially contributed to including correspondence, personal notebooks, photographs, articles, and unpublished festschrifts dedicated to Cotsen. Bulk of the material is related to excavations at Urkesh in Syria, from 1995 to 2017, with archaeologists Georgio and Marilyn Buccellati.
Material related to Urkesh is stored in one box together including the Festschrifts by Georgio and Marilyn Buccellati which are are stored in date order. Other material in no particular order.Physical Description
No discernable arrangment.
Undated photographs taken by Lloyd Cotsen all over the world on various subjects. Identified places include Japan, Italy, and the American Southwest. Black and white, color, negatives, and proof sheet photographs are included; some are mounted and matted.Physical Description
No discernable arrangment.
Various awards, memorabilia, prints, artworks, birthday cards, and other gifts that Cotsen received across his lifetime. Cheifly gifts from institutions he donated to, but also from Neutrogena workers, politicians, friends, and business partners.Physical Description
Card files are arranged alphabetically.
Undated card files created by or for Lloyd Cotsen, probably while he was an executive at Neutrogena. The first set of cards provides details for business contacts, art and antiquity dealers, restaurants, hotels, and places of interest in various US states and cities. The next set of cards provides business contacts, art and antiquity dealers, restaurants, hotels, and places of interest in various countries. Card files also include an incomplete card catalog of purchases for Cotsen Children's Library (with gaps, G-K and U-Z are not present). A card file containing material related to Cotsen's retirement and a card file containing miscellaneous recipes are also included.Physical Description