Yaddo is an artists' community located in Saratoga Springs, New York. The Yaddo Records date from 1835-1997 and contain the administrative records of The Corporation of Yaddo, as well as the institutional records of Yaddo from 1926, the year Yaddo began accepting guests. Notable guests have included Newton Arvin, John Cheever, Aaron Copland, Malcom Cowley, Leonard Bernstein, Truman Capote, Carson McCullers, Langston Hughes, Sylvia Plath, Katherine Anne Porter, and Clyfford Still. The Yaddo Records also include the personal papers of Yaddo's principal founders, Spencer and Katrina Trask, and George Foster Peabody.
Biographical/historical: Yaddo is an artists' retreat located on a 400-acre estate in Saratoga Springs, New York. Yaddo first began welcoming creative guests in 1926, but its roots extend back to the final decades of the 19th century. After the loss of their fourth child, Spencer and Katrina Trask decided to bequeath their baronial mansion and its surrounding grounds to future generations of creative men and women. Yaddo's guest list has included Newton Arvin, Milton Avery, James Baldwin, Leonard Bernstein, Truman Capote, John Cheever, Aaron Copland, Malcolm Cowley, Philip Guston, Patricia Highsmith, Langston Hughes, Ted Hughes, Alfred Kazin, Ulysses Kay, Jacob Lawrence, Sylvia Plath, Katherine Anne Porter, Mario Puzo, Clyfford Still, and Virgil Thomson.
Content: The Yaddo Records (1835-1997) comprise the personal papers of Spencer and Katrina Trask, George Foster Peabody, Allena Pardee, and Elizabeth Ames, in addition to the Yaddo Corporation's records. Correspondence, diaries, journals, notebooks, writings, scrapbooks, financial and legal documents, guest files, admission files, administrative files, ephemera, sound recordings, and photographs document the Trasks life together, the business and philanthropic activities of Spencer Trask and Peabody, Katrina Trask's career as a creative writer, the purchase, renovation, and life at Yaddo during the Trasks' lifetimes, Yaddo's transformation into an artist community, and the administration and operation of the Yaddo Corporation from 1926-1997. The records provide insight into the history of American arts in the 20th century, as well biographical and historical perspectives on many important American artists, writers, and composers.