Guide to the Thomas Albert Curry, Sr. papers
1918-1933

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Overview of the Collection

Creator: Curry, Thomas Albert
Title: Thomas A. Curry, Sr. papers
Dates: 1918-1933 ( inclusive )
Quantity: 2.25 linear feet (5 containters)
Collection Number: Ax 315
Summary: Thomas Albert Curry (1900- ) was the private secretary of famed theater producer David Belasco (1853-1931) from 1914 to 1931. Curry's papers contain articles, drafts and notes dealing with the life and career of Belasco. The collection includes portraits of Belasco, his family and colleagues, and publicity shots from Broadway productions, compiled for an unpublished biography. Collection also includes correspondence to and from Belasco, as well as numerous mementos relating to the producer.
Repository: Special Collections and University Archives, University of Oregon Libraries

1299 University of Oregon
Eugene, Oregon, 97403-1299
(541) 346-3068
spcarref@uoregon.edu

Languages: Collection materials are in English. 
Sponsor: Funding for encoding this finding aid was provided through a grant awarded by the National Endowment for the Humanities.

Historical Note

Thomas Albert Curry (dates unknown) was a writer and, from 1914 to 1931, private secretary to famed theater producer David Belasco (1853-1931). Curry was born in Hartford, Connecticut and was involved in the theater as a young man. After his marriage in 1893 he worked as a reporter and in advertising. He returned to the theater in 1913 when he submitted a play to several producers, including Belasco. Belasco liked the play enough to work on the script with Curry. After the death of Belasco's private secretary, he offered the position to Curry. Curry accepted and remained Belasco's secretary until the producer's death. Thomas Curry's son Thomas Albert Curry, Jr. (1900-1976) was a prominent writer of adventure stories and novels.

Content Description

The Thomas A. Curry Papers contains several items related to Curry's tenure as secretary to famed producer David Belasco. There are numerous articles and drafts of articles about the life and career of Belasco and his associates. There is also draft material for an additional volume to William Winter's Life of David Belasco which was originally published in two volumes covering Belasco's life up to 1917. This volume, the work of Winter's son Jefferson Winter was either published for a very limited distribution or never at all. There are correspondence from Belasco and to Belasco and Curry from numerous associates including Ruth Dayton, W. Somerset Maugham and Lenore Ulric. There are other mementos including Curry's address book, used in conducting business for Belasco. Portraits have been removed to the library's photgraphic collection.

The collection includes about 100 prints, processed to the folder level. It is arranged in groups of David Belasco portraits, Belasco family and friends, production images, and photos of Belasco with colleagues. Many of the images are identified. The principal photographer is the White Studio of New York. With the exception of some of the early family images, the bulk of the collection dates from Curry's employment period, 1914-1931. Box 1 contains images up to 8x10, box 2 contains larger production images, and box 3 contains larger images of Belasco portraits and Belasco with colleagues.

Use of the Collection

Restrictions on Access :  

Collection is open to the public.

Collection must be used in Special Collections & University Archives Reading Room.

Restrictions on Use :  

Property rights reside with Special Collections & University Archives, University of Oregon Libraries. Copyright resides with the creators of the documents or their heirs. All requests for permission to publish collection materials must be submitted to Special Collections & University Archives. The reader must also obtain permission of the copyright holder.

Archival may contain materials with sensitive or confidential information that is protected under federal and/or state right to privacy laws and other regulations.

Researchers are advised that the disclosure of certain information pertaining to identifiable living individuals represented in this collection without the consent of those individuals may have legal ramifications (e.g. a cause of action for invasion of privacy may arise if facts concerning an individual's private life are published that would be deemed highly offensive to a reasonable person) for which the University of Oregon assumes no responsibility.

If a researcher finds sensitive personal information in a collection, please bring it to the attention of the reading room staff.

Preferred Citation :  

[Identification of item], Thomas A. Curry, Sr. Papers, Ax 315, Special Collections & University Archives, University of Oregon Libraries, Eugene, Oregon.

Administrative Information

Acquisition Information :  

Gift of Thomas A. Curry Jr. in 1976.

Processing Note :  

Collection photographs processed by Normandy S. Helmer, August 2009.

This finding aid may be updated periodically to account for new acquisitions to the collection and/or revisions in arrangement and description.

Related Materials :  

Thomas A. Curry, Jr. papers, Ax 318, Special Collections & University Archives, University of Oregon Libraries, Eugene, Oregon.


Detailed Description of the Collection

Articles on Belasco - 1 ("Presenting David Belasco" mss)
Container(s)
box
folder
1 1

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Articles on Belasco - 2 (including "Presenting David Belasco" mss)
Container(s)
box
folder
1 2

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Articles on Belasco - 3
Container(s)
box
folder
1 3

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David Belasco - Correspondence Received
Container(s)
box
folder
1 4

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David Belasco - Cards and Miscellaneous
Container(s)
box
folder
1 5

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The Life of David Belasco, Vol. III by Jefferson Winter (manuscript material and images for illustrations and captions, not published)
Container(s)
box
folder
1 6

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Notes and Drafts for The Life of David Belasco, Vol. III by Jefferson Winter
Container(s)
box
folder
1 7

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The Life of David Belasco, Vol. III - front matter and manuscript draft material
Container(s)
box
folder
2 1

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David Belasco Mementos
Container(s)
box
folder
2 2

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Address Book
Container(s)
box
folder
2 3

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Photographs (PH113)
1.25 linear feet
Curry, Thomas Albert
Container(s)
Description
Dates
PH113_0000: [Images not yet listed for this collection.]
1.0 unknown
not yet assigned
Box
1 Prints, 8x10
2 Large prints of theatrical productions
3 Large prints, Belasco portraits & Belasco with colleagues

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Subjects

  • Personal Names :
  • Belasco, David, 1853-1931
  • Curry, Thomas Albert--Archives
  • Dayton, Ruth--Correspondence
  • Maugham, W. Somerset (William Somerset), 1874-1965--Correspondence
  • Ulric, Lenore, 1892-1970--Correspondence
  • Winter, William, 1836-1917
  • Subject Terms :
  • Theater--United States
  • Theatrical producers and directors--United States

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