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Yarrowstalks (Philadelphia, Pa.) Records

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Placed on deposit by Brian Zahn in the Contemporary Culture Collection, February, 1975.  MSS: donated later not photos.

The archives consists of the published issues of YARROWSTALKS, unpublished materials, artwork, manuscripts and photographs.  It is open for academic use.


            Twelve issues of Yarrowstalks were published in Philadelphia from 1967 until 1975.  Most of the activity was concentrated at the beginning of the period, in the heyday of underground press activity.

            The “summer of love” in 1967 saw the birth of about 100 underground publications nationwide, and Yarrowstalks was one of the first.  It was the most physically appealing of the first wave in its creative use of color and artwork.  In contrast to the other Philadelphia papers, Yarrowstalks leaned away from the politics.  Like New York’s East Village Other and the San Francisco Oracle, Yarrowstalks was among the first underground paper to explore the graphic possibilities of cold-type offset printing.  Color was splashed over pages with sketches and text.  The Oracle, particularly, was responsible for making newspaper graphics an art form, and it published some of the most beautiful and trend-setting psychedelic art of the 1960s.

            Yarrowstalks was Philadelphia’s Oracle.  It was the first of the undergrounds to publish the cartoons of Robert Crumb, an ex-Hallmark illustrator who has become the leading artist of underground “commix.”  In his character, Mr. Natural, he captured the feeling of the movement.  Mr. Natural graced Yarrowstalks that summer and subsequently appeared in most of the alternative publications in the country.  Yarrowstalks was a blend of artwork and creative writing.  It was not radical politically, but rather a gently publication, with visually pleasing graphics and an easy editorial style.  The paper, following the lead of editor and publisher Brian Zahn, moved toward Eastern philosophies.  It was available at universities, sympathetic bookshops, and at “head” shops.  It was free and sustained by advertising from the new stores that were opening in some parts of the city, and the resources of its publisher.

Publication History of Yarrowstalks

Issue              Place                          Date                                                   Copies

 1                     Philadelphia             June, 1967                                        10,000

 2                     Philadelphia             July, 1967                                            4,000

 3                     Philadelphia             August, 1967                                                  5,000

 4                     London                      November, 1967                              10,000

 5                     London                      December, 1967                              10,000

 6                     Philadelphia             December, 1968                                     50

 7                     Copenhagen                        December, 1970                                1,000

 8                     Philadelphia             Dec.-Jan. 1972-73                             1,000

 9                     Philadelphia             June, 1973                                          1,000

10                    Philadelphia             June, 1974                                          1,000

11                    Philadelphia             February-March, 1975                      1,000

12                    Philadelphia             April-May, 1975                                  4,500

Largest paid subscription = 300

            Material in the collection is arranged by issue.  Unless otherwise specified, manuscripts, photographs and artwork were published.  The paste-ups of the individual issues include original artwork not here described as well as reproductions of the described material.  Titles followed by an asterisk do not appear on the item, but rather were given by the editor.  Most of the artwork is unsigned, with the identity of the artists supplied by the editor.  All photographs are black and white.

Box                Folder

1                      1                                  Yarrowstalks issue #1, June 1967.  “All

                                                Material in Yarrowstalks is protected by copyright

                                                and published by consent of the contributors, to

                                                whom we extend our thanks and love.”  Steve Tilles,

                                                Phil Stilles, Bonny Williams, Paul Carlin, Margie

                                                Leamy, Peter Schiedt, John Hawke, Jean Elliott,

                                                Lynn Coren, Alain Crockin, Jessica Bryan, Zig,

                                                Arnie Hendrickson, timothy Leary, Robert Crumb,

                                                Ira Einhorn, Grant Schaeffer, Barry Shilling, Mike

                                                Woal, Cal, Lisa Patch, David Auten, Brian Zahn,

                                                Kit Thomas, Justine Green, Liz Sigafoos, Marshall

                                                Simkins, Jim McWilliams, Larry Lewis.

1                      2                                  Artwork:  “Somebody Else’s Trip,” inked

                                                stamped drawings by John Hawke (unpublished);

                                                “Lady Bird with Carrot,” pen and magic marker

                                                drawing recto and verso of one leaf by John Hawke

                                                (unpublished); “Flora”*, magic marker drawing, artist

unidentified (unpublished); “Super Eight”* pencil

drawing by Paul Carlin (unpublished); “Turn on at

Midnight,” silkscreen print by John Hawke with a

second copy in different state (?) in red on vinyl;

Untitled pen and ink drawing depicting three portraits

by John Hawke (unpublished); Untitled silkscreen

print of half-length female figure by John Hawke

(unpublished); “Mod Hip,” silkscreen on vinyl by John


1                      3                                  Reproductions of Artwork:  Brownline proof by

Jim McWilliams (unpublished); Untitled pen and ink

drawing depicting figures in a surrealistic style by

Larry Lewis (untitled); Brownline proof of cover art by

Jim McWilliams.

Box                Folder

1                      4                                  Photographs:  “Gatherings on the 600 block of

South St., Philadelphia”*, contact sheet of 36

photographs by Steve Tilles; Gathering on South St.

sidewalk, 5” x 8” print from previous sheet; “Mouth”*,

5” x 8” print by Peter Schiedt.

1                      5                                  Paste up of issue #1 as published.

2                      1                                  Yarrowstalks issue #2, July 1967.  “This

second issue is dedicated with love to our friend,

Lynne Coren, who will be married this month.  All

material in Yarrowstalks is protected by copyright and

is published with the consent of the contributors.

                                                            Credits:  Front and back covers and page

                                                fifteen, Margie Leamy; page two, Paul Carlin; pages

four, five and fourteen, Bonnie Williams; pages six

and seven, Arnie Hendrickson; pages eight and nine,

Louis Delsarte; page ten, photograph – Peter Scheidt,

border – Ichabod; page eleven, Robert Crumb; page

fifteen, border – John Hawke or Ekwah.

            We extend our appreciation for the invaluable

assistance of Jean Elliot, the Mad Peck, Norman

Cohn, Kit Thomas, Ritchie Meltzer and Gene


2                      2                                  Artwork:  Untitled watercolor by John Hawke;

                                                untitled pen and ink border by Ichabod for

photographs by Peter Schiedt; Tracing for back cover

by John Hawke; Lettering for editorial page by Jean

Elliot; Untitled pen and ink drawing by John Hawke

(unpublished); “Marriage of Heaven and Hell,” pen

and ink drawing by John Hawke (unpublished); three

untitled pencil drawings by Paul Carlin (unpublished);

Overlays for front and back cover; “Yarrowstalks” pen

and ink drawings by Margie Leamy (unpublished);

Advertising art in various media by unidentified artist.

2                      3                                  Manuscripts:  Editorial by David Auten and

Brian Zahn, (typescript) 4ℓ.

2                      4                                  Photographs:  (2) Male and female couple,

10” x 14” prints, by Bonnie Williams; Artwork for inside

cover, 8 ½ x 11” negative.

Box                Folder

3                      1                                  Yarrowstalks #3, August 1967.  “The third

                                                Issue of Yarrowstalks presents the work of Robert

                                                Crumb from San Francisco.  We extend our thanks

                                                and love for the assistance of Stephanie Braun,

                                                Ritchie Meltzer, and Manny, Moe and Jack Zahn.”

3                      1                                  Yarrowstalks #4, November, 1967.  #4 is

                                                essentially the same as #2 with two new works of art.

It was published in London, England.

3                      2                                  Yarrowstalks #5 December, 1967.  “If your

                                                name is ………………….. this issue is dedicated to

you.  All drawings are available as posters from the


was published by David Vaughan, Brian Zahn, Paul

Noble and Chris hill, at 6 Masons Yard Duke Street,

St. James’s, S.W.1.  Thank you very much David

Bailey and Susan Murray.”

            Reproduction for page 11; “An Agreement

between Hapshash and the Coloured Coat (Michale

English and Nigel Waymouth) and Brian Zahn,

typescript, 1ℓ.

4                      1                                  Yarrowstalks #6, December, 1968.

“Yarrowstalks gives special thanks to Jim Cameron,

Donnie Crockin, Robert Crumb, Ira Einhorn, Fred

Kurtz, Margie and Alan, Tim Leary, Larry Lewis,

Living Theatre, Roger Melnick, Jim McWilliams, Grant

Schaefer, Sue Stricker, Touch, David Vaughn, Bonnie

Williams and whoever always maintain a sense of

humor.  People who take themselves too seriously

are power crazy.  Free.  Yes it’s all free.”

4                      2                                  Artwork:  Untitled watercolor by Brian Zahn

                                                (unpublished); “National Electric Un-Art Puzzel,” ink

                                                stamped drawing by John Hawke (signed: Ekwah)

                                                (unpublished); 2 cartoon blocks after Robert Crumb,

                                                pen and ink by Brian Zahn.

4                      3                                  Secondary Material:  “The Original Noise” by

                                                Larry Lewis; “Universal Mutant” by Ira Cohen;

                                                Clipping from Life Magazine on the Living Theatre.

Box                Folder

4                      4                                  Manuscripts:  (Holograph paste-up for inside

front page), by Brian Zahn; revisions for page 3, 2ℓ. of

instructions to printer; of part of page 2, by Brian

Zahn, (all are holograph).

4                      5                                  Photographs:  Cover print nude male and

                                                female embracing, 11” x 14” print by Bonnie Williams;

                                                45 Erotic prints and negatives by Donnie Crockin; 67

                                                prints of the Living Theatre production of Frankenstein

at the Philadelphia YMHA in 1968 by Donnie Crockin;

7 negatives of pages in the issue.

4                      6                                  Paste-up of issue 6 as published.

5                      1                                  Yarrowstalks #7, December, 1970 published in

Copenhagen.  Staff for the issue was: Ramana

Maharishi, Sunyata, Larry Lewis, Pat Van Ingen,

Richard Horn, Loma Anagarika Gouinda.

5                      2                                  Artwork:  “Yarrowstalks” ink and pastel cover

art by Ka Kavana (Richard Bohn) (unpublished); “Om

is Where the Heart is”*, tempera by Brian Zahn

(unpublished); Untitled gouache by Danielle Weber

(unpublished); “Eye Seeks…” pen and ink drawing by

Brian Zahn (unpublished); Untitled watercolor by

Danielle Weber (unpublished); 2 untitled watercolors

by Brian Zahn (unpublished); “I Stood and Held Your

Hand, pen and ink drawing by Simon (unpublished);

Tibetan symbol, block print by unidentified artist

(published); Nonatal, hand painted postcard


5                      3                                  Manuscripts:  Autograph letter signed from

                                                Steve Ben Israel to Brother Rufus, 1ℓ. Undated,

(unpublished); Poetry typescripts by Ka Kavana with

additions, (holographs) 7ℓ. (unpublished); Untitled

short stories by Sunya (Alfred Emmanuel Sorenson)

in carbon copy and mimeograph, 26ℓ.; Poetry and

essays in typescript, 8ℓ.

5                      4                                  Photographs:  Kumba Melah, 38 prints (with

                                                negatives and contact sheets) (unpublished); Sunya

                                                (Alfred Emmanuel Sorenson), 10” x 14” print for cover

                                                4 negatives of artwork.

Box                Folder

5                      5                                  Secondary Material:  “Shri Ganeshaya Namah”

                                                by Guy Hamamouche, limited edition with hand

                                                colored plates; “Hastakara Yantra,” Hindu painting on

1ℓ.  “Right Eating, by Rharatanand, 6ℓ.; Poems by Mahendra the Natha (Anton Miles Palmer), 7ℓ.; “Lila,”

broadside poster.

5                      6                                  Paste-up of issue #7 as published.

6                      1                                  Yarrowstalks #8, December, 1972.

6                      2                                  Artwork:  Portrait in pen by Louis Delsarte with

holograph essay, 5p.

6                      3                                  Manuscripts:  2 Editorials by Brian Zahn,

                                                (holograph) with revisions, 13ℓ.; Typed letter signed

from Captain Midnight (Jack Moore) to Uncle C,

(Curtis Gurak) December 10, 1972; “The Movie,”

carbon copy correspondence from Curtis Gurak to

Jack Moore, 7ℓ.  (unpublished); Carbon copy letter

signed, from Jack Moore to Curtis Gurak, 6ℓ. 

(unpublished); 3 cartoons of Nixon in magic marker by

Brian Zahn.

6                      4                                  Secondary Material:  “Bangla Desh,” Xerox

                                                copy of unpublished paper by Brian Zahn; Temple

News, Nov. 8, 1972 including holograph notes of a

professor’s tenure defense; “Anti-Personnel Weapons

in Vietnam,” broadside pamphlet; “New Morning

Press,” broadside handout.

 6                     5                                  Paste-up of issue #8 as published.

7                      1                                  Yarrowstalks #9, June, 1973 with uncut sheets.

 “Credits:  Page 1- Stella Snead; 2- Didi Contractor; 3-

Ira Einhorn; 4- Louis Delsarte (Crossed fingers-B.Z.);

5- Steve Ben Israel; 6- Brian Zahn; 7- Sikh Miniatute;

8-9- Spencer Zahn; 10- Robert Crumb; 11-14-

Maurice Frydman; 15- Didi Contractor; 16-


Box                Folder

7                      2                                  Manuscripts:  Essays and poems published in

the issue are in typescript:  Steve Ben Israel, Maurice

Frydman as are long excerpts from Khadigramodyog;

Essays and notes, 17p. in holograph by Brian Zahn;

Unpublished editorial, 2 holograph pages, by Brian

Zahn; “Alien Call” and “the Noosphere,” Vimana

Vidya,” 3 poems in 5 holograph pages by Ira Einhorn


7                      3                                  Manuscripts:  (typescript, Xerox copy) “The

                                                Emergence of Bangladesh,” 30p.  paper by Brian

                                                Zahn; “Hank,” 6p. poem by Ira Einhorn.

7                      4                                  Artwork:  “Linda,” “Leo,” “Erotic Neon (2),” 2

                                                pencil and 2 pen and ink drawings by Brian Zahn


7                      5                                  Secondary Material:  “Nutritional Taxeamia

                                                (sic), by Bharatananda, a 4p. reprint from

                                                Khadigramodyog, July 1971, pp. 635-638;

                                                Mimeographed letter from George McGovern on

                                                behalf of the Bangladesh Emergency Relief fund, 1ℓ.;

                                                “Starvation Grips Bangladesh,” 1p. clipping from the

                                                Philadelphia Inquirer, May 31, 1973; “Indian Erotic

                                                Miniature Painting,” Galerie Krugier & Cie invitation,

                                                Sept. 28, 1973; “Joey Tissue and the Dummies,” 1ℓ. 

                                                Xerox copy with revisions.

7                      6                                  Photographs:  “Sand Formation”*, 2 10” x 13”

                                                prints of the cover art by Stella Sneed; Portraits, 2

10” x 13” and 1 5” x 7” print by Dee Dee Contractor;

Portrait 5” x 7” color print by Torben Huss; Passport

photo of Brian Zahn.

8                      1                                  Yarrowstalks #10, June, 1974.

8                      2                                  Manuscripts:  Entire issue in paste-up; “Non

                                                Violence” and “Law of the Universe,” 2 holograph

                                                pages by Brian Zahn; “the Meaning of…,” poem 1ℓ.

                                                Holograph, signed by Ira Einhorn; “Through Dark

                                                Tunnels of Glass,” 10ℓ. Typescript by Robert

                                                Brunswick (unpublished); Note and poem, 2ℓ. by

                                                Angelo Lewis; 2ℓ. Brian Zahn.

Box                Folder

8                      3                                  Artwork:  Back cover pencil drawing by Paul


8                      4                                  Photographs: 3 8” x 10” prints by Rayanne

Rubinstein, Marjorie Leamy, and Spencer Zahn;

Snapshot of Brian Zahn.

9                      1                                  Yarrowstalks #11, February/March, 1975.

9                      2                                  Artwork:  “Angelo Lewis,” pencil drawing by

                                                Andrea Livwright (signed); “Maurice Freedman,”

                                                pencil drawing by Brian Zahn (signed); “Save the

                                                Children of Bangladesh,” limited edition poster by

                                                Jack Bookbinder and Spencer Zahn, “149/958;

                                                “Beast,” magic marker drawing by Spencer Zahn


9                      3                                  Manuscripts:  Essays and notes, 10ℓ.

                                                Holograph by Brian Zahn; Photographs and camera

                                                ready copy for the issue; “The Boy,” 4ℓ. typescript

                                                story by William Sturm (unpublished); “Tree of Life

                                                Blue-print,” 1ℓ. Typescript by Tom Strife (unpublished)

(Xerox copy); “Kulu Beni Adam,” 3ℓ. holograph by

Ramdas-Pagaldas Bab (unpublished); Layout and

advertising, 19ℓ. Holograph and typescript; Note, from

Angelo Lewis to Brian Zahn, 1ℓ. holograph.

9                      4                                  Photographs:  “Henry,” 8” x 10” print by Carol

                                                Lopez; Show at Etage, 2 8” x 10” prints by Robert

                                                Goodman (unpublished).

9                      5                                  Secondary Material:  “The Living Theatre

Collective,” broadside and 6ℓ. pamphlet.                      

10                    1                                  Yarrowstalks #12, April-May, 1975.  “Staff:

                                                Brian Zahn, Publisher, Jacquelyn deB.  Deichler,

                                                Editor, Angelo Lewis, Executive Editor, J.C. Odell,

                                                Contributing Editor, Renee Klein, Art Director.  Visual

                                                Credits: Cover Design:  Renee Klein, page 6- Peter

                                                McManmon, pages 10-18- Chris Soliday, page 16-

                                                Steve Keller, page 21- Renee Klein, page 24- Renee

Klein, Steve Borns.”

10                    2                                  Paste-up and layout guide for issue as


Box                Folder

10                    3                                  Manuscripts:  Salvador Dali material:  Letter

                                                from J.C. Odell to Brian Zahn, concerning article in

                                                Yarrowstalks, typescript (signed) 1ℓ.; “Holograms: A

                                                Visit With Salvador Dali,” by J.C. Odell, typescript 5ℓ.;

                                                Instructions for publication, holograph 1ℓ.

                                                           Peter Bralver material:  “The Abbreviated

Model of unified Design Field” by Peter Bralver,

typescript 3ℓ.; “Generalized Model Theory of the

Unified Design-Field,” by __________, holograph 5ℓ.

(unpublished); “Pairs,” __________, holograph 2ℓ.

(unpublished); “On the Definition of the Largeness of

the Ennumerable Continuum,” ___________,

holograph, 2ℓ.  (unpublished); “On the Topology of the

Continuum” ________, holograph, 2ℓ.  (unpublished);

“Equality,” __________, holograph, 2ℓ.  

(unpublished); “An Essay on the Moralities of Energy,”

__________ typescript, 18ℓ.  (signed)  (unpublished).

10                    3                                  William Burroughs and John Giorno Poetry

                                                reading:  Letter from John Giorno to Brian Zahn,

                                                typescript, 1ℓ.  (signed); Letter from John Giorno to

                                                Angelo Lewis, typescript, 1ℓ.  (signed); Miscellaneous

                                                advertising and housekeeping material for the


                                                            Other articles:  “William Burroughs & the Wild

Boys,” by Angelo Lewis, typescript with revisions, 13ℓ. 

(unpublished); “William Burroughs & the Unsacred

Word,” by Angelo Lewis, typescript with revisions, 2ℓ.;

Interview with Louis Kahn, typescript, 7ℓ.; Essay, by

Brian Zahn, holograph, 7ℓ.

10                    4                                  Artwork:  “Check the Oil,” pen and ink drawing

                                                by Charles Parker.

10                    5                                  Photographs:  Harp player, 24” x 18” print by

                                                Steve Keller; Salvader Dali 5 5” x 8” prints by Chris


10                    6                                  Secondary Material:  “Yarrowstalk Forum

                                                International and Middle Earth Books Present William

S. Burroughs and John Giorno Poetry reading,” 18” x

24” poster.

Box                Folder

11                    1                                  Issue #13 was planned but never published.

Included are posters, cover art and negatives of

artwork.  Original Art:  “Sigurd and Slasher,” cartoon

in magic marker by Charles Dixon; “Circus Vargas,”

crayon etching by D. Deichler.

12                    1                                  Miscellaneous:  “Poex 7”, 24ℓ. pamphlet by

Brian Zahn and Ka Kavana in English and Dutch;

Letterhead and form letters on advertising.

12                    2                                  Material for projected monthly tabloid “B-JAM,”

                                                including music, articles, drawings and photographs.

12                    3                                  Philly Joe Jones Concert:  Tickets, promotional

                                                material and housekeeping records for the concert on

                                                June 13, 1975.

12                    4                                  Touch Community Poster and Logos.

12                    5                                  Brian Zahn personal effects:  “Mirror

                                                Magazine,” 1961 Central High School; U.S. Passport,

                                                1969-1974; Statement of financial independence; 5

                                                Photographs by Bonnie Nell Williams, 1966; Self-

                                                portrait, in water colors and ink; Resume, 1975.

13                    1                                  Printing plates and negatives for issues of

                                                Yarrowstalks:  2 sets of plates for issue #9, negatives

                                                for #8, plates and negatives for #10.

Robert Crumb (American Cartoonist)
Appearances in issues of
Yarrowstalks 1967-1975

Issue #1                     June 1967                 p. [8] “stoned” illustration.

(folio/tabloid)                                                p. [9] Caricature of Hippie couple

                                                                        p. [11] “The Trip.  Starring Novice

                                                                          Kosher.”  20 box cartoon strip.

                                                                        p. [14] “Mr. Natural.  The Zen Master”

                                                                          6 box cartoon strip.

Issue #2                     July 1967                   p. [10] “Head Comix.”  Full page,

(folio/tabloid)                                                36 box cartoon strip.

Issue #3                     August 1967             All Crumb issue of Yarrowstalks (7 of 8

pages).  Includes box cartoons “Head

Comix,” “Eggs Ackley that number one

son of a gun!,” “Mr. Natural encounters

Flakey Foont,” “Itzy and Bitzy in ‘Cause

and Effect’,” “Big Freakout on Detroit

Ave.,” “Life Among the Constipated,”

and two “Mr. Natural” strips.

Issue #6                     December 1968       p. [8-10] “City of the Future” strip.  This

(folio/tabloid)                                                was the aborted issue, printing

                                                                        problems, only 50 or so bad issues

                                                                        issued.  Cover has a six box Crumb

                                                                        drawing at bottom.

Issue #8                     Dec./Jan. 1972/73    p. [4] “Mr. Natural.  The Zen Master,”

(magazine)                                                      full-page, 6 box strip.

                                                                        p. [11].  Full page portrait drawing.

                                                                        p. [15].  Full page portrait drawing.

Issue #9                     June 1973                 p. [10].  Full page drawing credited to

(magazine)                                                    Crumb.

Issue #10                   June 1974                 p. [11].  Full page “Ow! That’s the

(magazine)                                                      Bazoozis!  “one-box cartoon.

                                                                        p. [12].  Full page drawing.

Issue #11                   Feb/Mar. 1975          p. [21] (inside lower cover).  Publisher’s

(magazine)                                                    advertisement offering free copies of

                                                                        issue no. 3 (the all Crumb issue) to new

                                                                        subscribers, reproducing the cover of

                                                                        issue 3.  (This drawing was also used by

                                                                        the publisher, edited, for letterhead,

                                                                        designs on contracts).

Wh 050324