Archive of Leo Cooper

Leo Cooper, born 25 March 1934, worked in publishing for over thirteen years before setting up his own firm to publish books with a military theme, including regimental histories, escape stories and war memoirs.

The firm Leo Cooper Ltd was established in 1968. Cooper had taken the authors and titles under contract with him while he was working at the publisher Hamish Hamilton, and bought the Famous Regiments Series. Shortly after the firm started Cooper was joined by Tom Hartman, his business partner and editor, and they worked together for nearly thirty-five years. In 1970 Leo Cooper joined forces with the well-established Seeley, Service imprint (Seeley was established in 1744).

Seeley, Service & Cooper was bought by Frederick Warne in 1979 after the company went into receivership. In 1982 Leo Cooper moved under the umbrella of the Heinemann group – namely Secker & Warburg and later Heinemann. Eventually the Leo Cooper imprint was bought by the Barnsley Chronicle in 1990 who changed the name to Pen & Sword. Cooper stayed with them for a while before retiring from publishing in about 2002.

The collection contains editorial and related files (including production, publicity and review files), manuscripts, map and illustration artwork, business correspondence files, internal correspondence files and minute books and miscellaneous files of correspondence, largely with potential authors.

Items from the collection were on display as part of our Leo Cooper exhibition in 2011.

Leo Cooper died on 29 November 2013.

More information

  • This collection is catalogued and available via Enterprise
  • A full description is available on our online database
  • Download a pdf of the catalogue here (2.36 MB) 
  • Manuscript number MS 5326
publishing history printed books (post-1850), correspondence, business records, art works cooper leo

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