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Raymond H. Ferris collection of theater programs

Print Coll. 41

This is a finding aid. It is a description of archival material held at the University of Pennsylvania. Unless otherwise noted, the materials described below are physically available in our reading room, and not digitally available through the web.

Summary Information

Repository:
University of Pennsylvania: Kislak Center for Special Collections, Rare Books and Manuscripts
Creator:
Ferris, Raymond H., 1890-1972
Title:
Raymond H. Ferris collection of theater programs
Date [inclusive]:
1881-1901
Call Number:
Print Coll. 41
Extent:
0.33 linear foot (1 box)
Language:
English
Abstract:
Raymond H. Ferris (1890-1972), a University of Pennsylvania administrator, collected playbills and programs from Philadelphia theaters, dating from 1881 to 1901. The collection features playbills from the Academy of Music, Arch Street Theatre, Association Hall, Chestnut Street Opera House, Congress Spring Park, Eleventh Street Opera House, Garrick Theatre, Grand Opera House, Haverly's Theatre, McCaull's Opera House, New Arch Street Opera House, New National Theatre, Park Theatre, Philadelphia Lyceum, Temple Theatre, Walnut Street Theatre, and Winter Circus.
Cite as:
Raymond H. Ferris collection of theater programs, 1881-1901, Print Coll. 41, Kislak Center for Special Collections, Rare Books and Manuscripts, University of Pennsylvania.
PDF Version:

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Biography/History

Raymond H. Ferris (1890-1972) received a BA in 1912 and an MA in 1914, both from the University of Pennsylvania, and later became an administrator at the University. In 1918, he married Edythe Fisher (1897-1995), a notable painter-- originally from Riverton, New Jersey-- who exhibited at the Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Arts, among other places.

In the 1800s, Philadelphia was a theatrical center of the United States and was home to many theaters and theater companies. Notable during this time period were the actors Edwin Forrest, Charlotte Cushman, Junius Brutus Booth, the Drew family, and the Barrymores. Among the most notable theaters were the Arch Street Theatre; the Academy of Music; and the Walnut Street Theatre, which was founded in 1809 and, still operating, is a National Historic Landmark and is known as "America's Oldest Theatre."

Scope and Contents

This collection of performance programs from Philadelphia theaters, dating from 1881 to 1901, features playbills from the Academy of Music, Arch Street Theatre, Association Hall, Chestnut Street Opera House (formerly Fox's American Theatre), Congress Spring Park, Eleventh Street Opera House, Garrick Theatre, Grand Opera House, Haverly's Theatre, McCaull's Opera House, New Arch Street Opera House, New National Theatre, Park Theatre, Philadelphia Lyceum, Temple Theatre, Walnut Street Theatre, and Winter Circus. The theater programs are arranged alphabetically according to theater name.

The majority of the programs are from Arch Street Theatre, Chestnut Street Opera House, and the Walnut Street Theatre. Almost all are black and white (with the exception of one program from Garrick Theatre and one from McCaull's Opera House) and all contain a significant number of advertisements for a variety of Philadelphia businesses from clothing to food to furniture.

Administrative Information

Publication Information

University of Pennsylvania: Kislak Center for Special Collections, Rare Books and Manuscripts,  2017 July 12

Finding Aid Author

Finding aid prepared by Alexandra M. Wilder

Access Restrictions

This collection is open for research use.

Source of Acquisition

Gift of Raymond H. Ferris, 1914.

Processing Information note

Formerly Dewey 812H F414.

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Related Materials

Related Archival Materials note

Please see the 19th Century playbills collection, 1852-1902, at the Free Library of Philadelphia Rare Book Department. http://hdl.library.upenn.edu/1017/d/pacscl/FLP_FLPTHCPLAYBILLS

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Controlled Access Headings

Corporate Name(s)
  • Arch Street Theatre (Philadelphia, Pa.).
  • Chestnut Street Opera House (Philadelphia, Pa.).
  • Walnut Street Theatre (Philadelphia, Pa.)
Form/Genre(s)
  • Advertisements
  • Theater programs
Subject(s)
  • Performing arts
  • Theater
  • Theater--Pennsylvania--Philadelphia
  • Theater--Pennsylvania--Philadelphia--19th century

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Collection Inventory

Box Folder

Academy of Music, undated.

1 1

Arch Street Theatre, 1881-1885.

1 1

Association Hall, 1882.

1 1

Chestnut Street Opera House, 1882-1893.

1 2

Congress Spring Park, undated.

1 2

Eleventh Street Opera House, 1884-1893.

1 3

Garrick Theatre, 1901.

1 4

Grand Opera House, 1892-1893.

1 5

Haverly's Theatre, 1882-1884.

1 6

McCaull's Opera House, undated.

1 7

New Arch Street Opera House, 1893.

1 8

New National Theatre, 1893.

1 9

Park Theatre, 1892-1893.

1 10

Philadelphia Lyceum, 1882-1883.

1 11

Temple Theatre, 1886.

1 12

Walnut Street Theatre, 1882-1893.

1 13

Winter Circus, 1892-1893.

1 14