The Jim Henson Company Archives is a collection of materials documenting the career of Jim Henson.
The Archives are housed in New York, Los Angeles, and in off-site storage. The New York City offices of the Jim Henson Company formerly served as the NY site for the Archives; currently, however, the NY Archives occupy a facility in Long Island City, New York.
The NY archives, with about 23,000 entries in its database, houses documents, artwork, production records, licensed products, awards and Jim Henson's personal papers. Three-dimensional objects from the collection are housed in off-site storage. The media archives, which comprises about 75,000 items, and the photo library are housed in the Jim Henson Company headquarters in Hollywood and in off-site storage.
Bob Payne formally established the archives, and Craig Shemin continued looking after the archives as one of his first jobs at the company. Karen Falk, based in NY, is Director of Archives. Carla Dellavedova, Media Archives Manager, and Hillary Howell, Media Archivist, are based in Hollywood. A small portion of the Henson media archives relating to Henson's film work is housed in the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences Archives in Los Angeles.
The company archive is not all-inclusive. As stated by Falk in an "Ask Henson" query on Henson.com, the acceptance of an item into the archives is contingent upon whether it helps document the creative aspects of a production, is useful in illustrating the company history, can be used visually in marketing or promotions, and whether it can be safely and effectively stored (the latter problem led to the "de-accessioning" of Croonchy Stars cereal). In addition, every surviving item personally owned by Jim Henson is included.
In addition to concept notes, scripts, character sketches, and other pre-production and production materials, the archives includes such oddities as a "Kermit repair kit," a black gym bag containing fleece, sewing utensils, spare eyes, and a mike, for emergency use when Jim Henson made the talk show rounds in the 1980s. Visual materials and notes from the archives have been used in the past on Henson.com, in Jim Henson's Designs and Doodles, and for other projects.