Barclay Leathem and the National Theatre Conference
Fri, 17 May 2013 16:29:43 EST
Barclay S. Leathem began teaching in the English Department at Western Reserve University (WRU) in 1921 while a law student. (He received his law degree in 1924.) He moved to the Speech Department in 1927 to teach the first theatre classes at WRU. Barclay Leathem in the classroom, Western Reserve...
Frederic McConnell and the National Theatre Conference
Fri, 26 Apr 2013 14:53:23 EST
The post-World War I era saw a number of significant changes in the national professional theatre dynamic, most notably the end of road company empires, the rise of motion pictures, and the collapse of the big stock companies. At the same time came the rise of the non-commercial theatre in...
The rare book holdings include one of the most beautiful color seashell books ever published, Conchology, or, The natural history of shells, by George Perry, which appeared in 1811. In the opening paragraph of his Introduction he states: "The study of Shells or testaceous animals, is a branch of...
The Womenâs Committee of the Cleveland Play House was founded to further the interests of the Play House, initially serving as liaison between the theatre and the public. The first Womenâs Committee meeting was held in the Brooks Theatre in May 1932 at the request of the Board of Trustees....
Restoration of Charles W. Wason's "Letters of a Trip Around the World"
Thu, 20 Sep 2012 23:34:43 EST
Working in a Preservation Department of a university library is a challenging and rewarding job. One of the most enjoyable activities involved with this profession is the conservation of rare and historic bindings. I recently had the opportunity to restore the damaged binding for a unique book with ties...
Our postings on the great publishers and printers continues with the house of Elsevier. The Elseviers were a Dutch family of printers, publishers and booksellers who flourished in Holland for over one hundred years from about 1585 until 1712. They were one of many fine printing establishments that conducted...
Samples from The Kelvin Smith Library Bookplate Collection
Mon, 23 Jul 2012 18:57:52 EST
Special Collections is the repository of a collection of over 5,000 bookplates from a handful of collectors who pursued that fascinating hobby. Begun with a gift in memory of their daughter Lucia to Western Reserve University by Mr. & Mrs. Paul Lemperly in 1917 the collection continued to grow through...
Though the Cleveland Play House struggled early on to find itâs financial and managerial footing, there was never a lack of artistic talent available to produce first class promotional material for a wide variety of productions each season. By 1922, the number of hand-drawn programs and playbills had been augmented...
Our processing efforts received a boost this summer through the work of three students, Mike Muth, Michael Wilson, and Char'ta Cleggett. Michael and Char'ta were part of University Circle, Inc's Future Connections program, a summer internship program for rising high school seniors. Mike joined us as an intern in Kent...
Small scale disaster recovery, or: the KSL Disaster Plan Works Again!
Mon, 18 Jun 2012 21:35:43 EST
The Preservation Department of Kelvin Smith Libraryâs Scholarly Research and Special Collections team received the phone call on Wednesday, June 13th, a perfectly normal day. Workmen on the roof were performing maintenance on an air-conditioning unit when suddenly a water pipe burst, sending water cascading through the ceiling and onto...
Cleveland Artists and Early Play House Promotional Artwork: John Lorin Black
Tue, 12 Jun 2012 20:02:51 EST
Among the items selected for display at the March 26th event announcing the donation of the Cleveland Play House Archive to the Kelvin Smith Library were several wooden printerâs blocks used in the creation of early publicity pieces for the organization. Of these, one block (below) resonated with exhibit creators...
In early March we welcomed photographer, Laura Webb, and CWRU Think Magazine's Tricia Schellenbach and Melissa Evans Persensky to Kelvin Smith Library for a sneak preview of some of the gems in the Cleveland Play House Archives. It was a fascinating glimpse at how skilled photographers set up near-studio conditions...
The Department of Special Collections begins a series of postings highlighting the great printers and publishers with Christopher Plantin of Antwerp. Plantin turned Antwerp into the most important center for book production during the second half of the 16th century and he is one of the greatest names in...
The Play House was interested in education at many levels. One program which was extremely successful was The Curtain Pullers. Originally known as The Childrenâs Theatre when it was founded in 1933 by Play House actress Esther Mullin, the Curtain Pullers produced plays acted by children for children. Local schools...
Planning for a non-profit theatre supper club, to be called the Cleveland Play House Club, was begun in the late 1950âs by the Men's Committee. Their goal was to enhance the theatre going experience and bring added income to the organization. The only requirement for membership was that the applicant...
Restrictions: The Department of Special Collections is open to any interested researcher upon presentation of a valid CASE ID or other valid official identification card. Department is open to other researchers by appointment only. No usage restrictions.
Acquisition: This collection was part of a gift from the estate of Benjamin Parsons Bourland, to the Adelbert College Library of Western Reserve University, 1943.
Biography: Benjamin Parsons Bourland 1870-1943
Born on May 2, 1870, in Peoria, Illinois, Benjamin Parsons Bourland was awarded Bachelor of Arts in 1889 and Master of Arts in 1890 by the University of Michigan, and, Doctor of Philosophy by the University of Vienna in 1897. As Instructor in French at the University of Michigan, he attained the rank of Assistant Professor in 1899. He accepted the position of Associate Professor of Romance Languages in Adelbert College of Western Reserve University in 1901. In 1905 he was made full Professor of Romance Languages, in which position he remained until his retirement, as Professor Emeritus, in 1940.
He married Gertrude Louise Thayer in 1902. Bourland enjoyed a reputation as an outstanding scholar, a patron of the performing arts, a wine connoisseur, and, as a bibliophile noted for his active leadership of the Rowfant Club of Cleveland, Ohio. The Rowfant Club is an organization established in 1892 for "primarily the critical study of books in their various capacities to please the mind of man." [Encyclopedia of Cleveland History]. Bourland died on January 12, 1943.
Scope and Content
Collection mainly consists of announcements for Rowfant Club exhibitions, lectures, auctions and meetings from 1909 to 1936. Included as enclosures in meeting announcements are subscription forms for Rowfant publications, order forms for candlesticks and bookplates, and, occasional notices for fees and donations. There are a small number of memorial tributes to notable members and letters to Bourland in regard to his term as Secretary of the club.
The collection is arranged chronologically by date, month and year within folders reflecting one year of notices mailed to Rowfant Club members. The arrangement reflects the order created by Bourland for use with board slip cases purchased from the Rowfant Club Publication Committee. The cases, 7” x 6” x 7/8” in size, came with inside wrappers of heavy cover-paper and printed spine labels and each was intended to hold an annual set of club notices. Bourland maintained a scrapbook for his Rowfantia until 1912 and used slip covers to store them from 1912-1936. Folder titles are taken from the labels of the slip covers he used, thus some folder titles reflect dates of annual activities which spanned the months from two calendar years while others document club notices received during a single calendar year. For preservation needs, the slip covers have been removed to Box 2. Where extant, cover-papers have been stored with club notices in Box 1.
Club notices. 1909-1912. Scrapbook
Club notices. 1912-1913
Club notices. 1913-1914
Club notices. 1914-1915
Club notices. 1915-1916
Club notices. 1916-1917
Club notices. 1917-1918
Club notices. 1918-1919
Club notices. 1919-1920
Club notices. 1920-1921
Club notices. 1921-1922
Club notices. 1922
Club notices. 1923-1924
Club notices. 1924-1925
Club notices. 1925-1926
Club notices. 1926-1927
Club notices. 1927
Club notices. 1928
Club notices. 1929
Club notices. 1930
Club notices. 1931
Club notices. 1932
Club notices. 1933
Club notices. 1934
Club notices. 1935
Club notices. 1936
25 Rowfant Club Publication Committee slip cases. 1912-1936