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Emery I. and Bertalan Gondor Collection

Identifier: AR 25085

Scope and Contents

The Emery and Bertalan Gondor Collection documents Emery Gondor's professional life as a caricaturist, illustrator, child psychologist, and photographer in the cities of Berlin, Vienna, Budapest and New York. The collection also includes a small amount of records concerning the work of Emery's brother, artist Bertalan Gonder.

Series I contains documents regarding Emery Gonder's academic background and professional accomplishments.

Series II is composed of correspondence between the Gondor and Ullstein families. This series also contains correspondence with the Berlin Museum, the Jewish Museum of Berlin, the Leo Baeck Institute of New York and other institutions.

Books and journals with illustrations and articles by Emery Gondor may be found in Series III. Of particular interest is a book written by Gondor, entitled Art and Play Therapy which describes the ways in which art therapy can benefit the lives of emotionally disturbed children.

Series IV includes posters designed by Emery Gondor as well as posters describing events in which Gondor participated or helped to organize.

Series V constitutes the most extensive portion of the collection. This series contains many records documenting Emery Gondor's work and interests, predominantly in the form of newspaper clippings showcasing artwork by Gondor. In addition, there are articles describing Gondor's life, his artwork and the impact he had on American art. Also included are letters from his readers and a small group of photographs taken by the artist.

Series VI contains records and memorabilia, some which can not be directly attributed to either Emery or Bertalan Gondor.

All records referring to the artist Bertalan Gondor may be found in Series VII. These include correspondence, a memoir and examples of his artwork.

Series IX contains a small selection of books whose authors penned dedications to Emery Gondor.


  • 1909-2003


Language of Materials

The collection is in German, English, Hungarian, and Danish.

Access Restrictions

Open to researchers.

Use Restrictions

There may be some restrictions on the use of the collection. For more information, contact:

Leo Baeck Institute, Center for Jewish History, 15 West 16th Street, New York, NY, 10011


Biographical Note

Emerich (Emery) I. Gondor (1896-1977) was born in Budapest, Hungary to Karoly and Henriette (née Fried) Gondor. He attended the Royal Hungarian University and received his diploma from the National Academy of Art. As a young art teacher, he observed many children who had suffered during and after World War I and was inspired to learn more about their afflictions and the ways in which art could be used to help them. This prompted a lifelong interest in the field of psychology.

In Budapest, the psychoanalyst Sándor Ferenczi introduced Gondor to the subject of psychoanalysis and therapy. When Gondor moved to Vienna in 1920, to attend the Academy of Industrial Arts, he learned of Professor Csizeck's pioneering work in the field of progressive art education for children. He began working at the Viennese University Clinic, drawing and playing with emotionally disturbed children. From 1925 to 1926, Gondor attended seminars in Berlin and participated in the work of the Individual Psychological Association. He exhibited his own oil paintings during those years, lectured and worked as an illustrator for children's books and several newspapers. He was also named to the post of art director at Ullstein, Europe's largest publishing house.

Gondor immigrated to the United States in 1935 and became a citizen in 1941. During World War II, he worked for the War Department and was Chief of the Technical Operation Unit in the Overseas Service for France and Germany for two years. This unit performed classified work in counter-espionage. Gondor was also an instructor at the training schools in New York, France and Germany, where he taught about the psychological problems of counter-espionage as well as wrote several classified manuals on the subject.

After the war, Gondor was named head of the art and play therapy groups at the Retarded Children's Clinic and the Psychiatric Child Guidance Clinic at New York Medical College. In addition, he wrote and illustrated several books, created puzzles for dozens of comic books, and taught art to juvenile delinquents at Youth House.

In 1959, Gondor received his diploma in Clinical Psychology from New York State University. He became director of the art program at the Institute for Mental Retardation at New York Medical College in 1968. Emery Gondor died in 1977.

Bertalan Gondor was Emery Gondor's brother. Bertalan was born in 1908 in Budapest, Hungary. He studied art in Budapest and Vienna. After the Hungarian White Terror (1919-1920), he moved from Budapest to Vienna. Bertalan finally returned to Budapest once Austria was annexed in 1938. There he worked as an artist and an illustrator. During World War II, he was deported and conscripted into forced labor service in eastern Hungary. In March of 1944, Germany invaded Hungary and took control of the Hungarian ghettos and camps. Bertalan was then deported to Poland and placed in a camp called Harka. He died in March 1945 in the Mauthausen Concentration Camp.


1.75 Linear Feet


This collection documents Emery Gondor's professional life as a caricaturist, illustrator, child psychologist and photographer in Berlin, Vienna, Budapest, and New York. The bulk of the records are personal documents, such as postcards, certificates, and letters of reference, as well as a number of books and journals that were illustrated or written by Gondor. The collection also includes three folders concerning Emery Gondor's brother, the artist Bertalan Gondor.

Related Material

This collection is closely related to AR 25397 (Emery I. Gondor Collection).

Guide to the Papers of Emery and Bertalan Gondor, 1909-2003 (bulk 1920-1945)   AR 25085
Processed by Iris Hohmann
© 2006
Language of description
Script of description
Language of description note
Description is in English.

Revision Statements

  • 2010-03-23 : encoding of linking to digital objects from finding aid was changed from <extref> to <dao> through dao_conv.xsl.
  • 2011-09: controlled access subjects and related materials added by Kevin Schlottmann.

Repository Details

Part of the Leo Baeck Institute Repository

15 West 16th Street
New York NY 10011 United States