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Joseph Campbell's Archives

Joseph Campbell’s archives are held in two locations: the New York Public Library, which houses many of his working papers, and OPUS Archives and Research Center, which holds his artifacts, audio recordings, and personal library.

New York Public Library Archives: Joseph Campbell Papers
Location: New York Public Library, New York, NY

Joseph Campbell often conducted his research at the New York Public Library. In 2016, the Joseph Campbell Foundation placed the fruits of that research in the NYPL archives.

The Joseph Campbell papers date from 1905 to 1995 (bulk dates 1930s-1980s), and consist of materials related to Campbell’s career as a college professor, lecturer, researcher, and author. 

The collection is arranged into eight series, and holds Campbell’s: 

  • original writing

  • teaching materials

  • files from his appearances in film and television

  • research files

  • correspondence

  • photographs

  • press clippings


Campbell’s files detail his research and writing on mythology and literature, and chronicle the many lectures he gave throughout his career. The papers include some materials that were added posthumously, such as lecture transcripts and outgoing correspondence. Projects started by Campbell in his lifetime and completed after his death, such as The Historical Atlas of World Mythology, are also held in the collection.

OPUS Archives and Research Center: The Joseph Campbell Collection

Location: OPUS Archives and Research Center, Carpinteria, CA


In 1990, Joseph Campbell’s correspondence, papers, photographs, artifacts, audio recordings, and personal library were donated to what is now the OPUS Archives and Research Center on the campuses of Pacifica Graduate Institute.

The presence of the Joseph Campbell Library and Collection helped persuade other scholars to place their archives at OPUS. Current collections include those of Marija Gimbutas, Christine Downing, James Hillman, Marion Woodman, and others.

In 2016 a portion of the Campbell collection – correspondence, research notes, handwritten drafts, photographs, and other papers – was moved to the New York Public Library (NYPL) Archives.

The Joseph Campbell Collection, including nearly a thousand hours of recorded lectures, along with Campbell’s personal artifacts, remains with OPUS Archives on Pacifica Graduate Institute’s Ladera Lane Campus. 

OPUS also houses the three thousand books that comprise Campbell’s personal library in the Joseph Campbell and Marija Gimbutas Libraries, on Pacifica’s Lambert Road campus.

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