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Theatrical Print collection


Scope and Contents

Biographical Note

Administrative Information

Detailed Description

Prints: Portraits & Scenes

Prints: Theatres

Theatre Programs (Broadsides)


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Theatrical Print collection, 1720-1927 | Rare Book & Manuscript Library, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

By Dawn Schmitz

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Collection Overview

Title: Theatrical Print collection, 1720-1927Add to your cart.

Predominant Dates:1770-1893

ID: 02/Theatrical Prints

Primary Creator: Leavitt, Theodore

Other Creators: Hewitt, Barnard (1906-), Shattuck, Charles Harlen (1910-)

Extent: 9.0 Cubic Feet

Arrangement: Series 1 is alphabetical by actor's last name, except Box 22, which is by title of play.�  Prints of theatres in Series 2 are arranged alphabetically by name of theatre.�  Programs in Series 3 are arranged alphabetically by the name of the theatre. Photographs in Series 4 are arranged first by type (cabinet cards then photographs) and alphabetical by performer's last name thereunder.

Date Acquired: 01/10/1953

Subjects: Actors, Theater, Theater -- Great Britain -- History -- Pictorial works, Theater -- United States -- History -- Pictorial works, Theater -- United States -- History -- Sources, Theaters

Forms of Material: Broadsides, Photographs, Playbills, Printed ephemera, Prints, Theater programs

Languages: English

Scope and Contents of the Materials

Assembled by Theodore Leavitt. Prints (etchings, engravings, lithographs, mezzotints, wood engravings, aquatints, photogravures, photomechanical prints) of actors, scenes from plays and theatre exteriors. Also contains theatre programs/playbills, most of which are broadsides. The bulk of the prints are of actors, other performers and dramatists, and most of these represent the performer in costume for a particular role. There are some photographs, including cabinet cards, and original drawings as well. Filed along with the prints of actors are brief biographies written (ca. 1953) by students of professors Barnard Hewitt and Charles Shattuck.

Biographical Note

Theodore Leavitt was a print collector and the manager of the Bar Harbor, Maine, Playhouse. It is believed that he sold his collection of theatrical prints to A&B Booksellers in New York, and it is this collection that was later purchased by the University of Illinois in 1953.

Subject/Index Terms

Theater -- Great Britain -- History -- Pictorial works
Theater -- United States -- History -- Pictorial works
Theater -- United States -- History -- Sources

Administrative Information

Repository: Rare Book & Manuscript Library, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

Access Restrictions: Open to researchers.

Use Restrictions:

The RBML reproductions policies can be found here:


The copyright law of the United States (Title 17, United States Code) governs the making of photocopies or other reproductions of copyrighted materials.

Under certain conditions specified in the law, libraries and archives are authorized to furnish a photocopy or other reproduction. One of these specified conditions is that the photocopy or reproduction is not to be "used for any purpose other than private study scholarship or research." If a user makes a request for, or later uses, a photocopy or reproduction for purposes in excess of "fair use," that user may be liable for copyright infringement.

This institution reserves the right to refuse to accept a copying order if, in its judgement, fulfillment of the order would damage materials or involve violation of copyright law.

Acquisition Source: A & B Booksellers, New York

Acquisition Method: The University of Illinois Foundation paid for the collection in February 1953 and the Department of Speech paid for the postage, according to a ledger in the Special Collections Acquisition File, 1905-1996 (University Archives record group 35/1/19, Box 7).

Related Materials: Barnard Hewitt Papers (University Archives Record Series Number: 12/11/20).�  Charles H. Shattuck Papers (University Archives Record Series Number: 15/7/39). Theatre Program Collection (#37). Alyene Westall Prehn Theatre Program Collection (#36).

Processing Information: https://wiki.cites.uiuc.edu/wiki/display/librare/Home

Box and Folder Listing

Browse by Series:

[Series 1: Prints: Portraits & Scenes],
[Series 2: Prints: Theatres],
[Series 3: Theatre Programs (Broadsides)],
[Series 4: Photographs],