Herbert S. Zim

Herbert S. Zim

Herbert Spencer Zim (1909-1994), author of many books and textbooks on science including the Golden Nature guides.

Retired to Plantation Key, Florida, in the 1960s with his first wife (Sonia Bleeker), and he died there in December 1994 after suffering from Alzheimer’s disease. [ny times obit] [long bio] [short bio] [shorter bio] [google] [wikipedia]


Most of his books in their original editions are collectible now, but new editions (revised and updated and with new covers) are in print. For some years (1980s on) the new covers were decidedly ugly, having lost the careful typography and great full-color paintings of the originals; now the new editions have decidedly “retro” covers that are carefully done. Macmillan still has an author page for Zim. Some of the books were illustrated by his friend Raymond Perlman. [photo]

Papers and archives

The Herbert Spencer Zim and Sonia Bleeker Papers are held by
Washington State University and contain material from 1934 to 1976. The Herbert S. Zim Papers are held at The University of Southern Mississippi and span the years 1952 to 1992.

Articles and appreciations

Herbert S. Zim: Natural Patriot” by Emmett Duffy (2008) is a nice, personal appreciation of Zim and the Golden Nature series.

First published on February 26th, 2009 at 1:00 pm (EST) and last modified on February 26th, 2009 at 1:02 pm (EST).