Scope and arrangement
The Ted Shawn Collection documents Ted Shawn's personal life as well as his career as a dancer, choreographer, and writer from 1903 to 1971. Although the bulk of the material dates from 1960 to 1971, there is a significant amount for the years 1920 through 1959. There is very little material prior to 1920. The collection is divided into nine major sections: Correspondence; Ted Shawn's Annual Newsletters; Unpublished Manuscript of Ted Shawn's Autobiography; Written Works by Ted Shawn; Written Works about Ted Shawn; Notes for Ted Shawn's Thirty-Three Years of American Dance;Denishawn Dancers and Ted Shawn and his Men Dancers; Delsarte System of Expression; Miscellaneous.|||The following abbreviations are used throughout the folder list:
- TS: Ted Shawn
- RSD: Ruth St. Denis
- misc.: miscellaneous
- n.d.: no date
When noting the correspondents, the name of the individual or individuals writing the letter is listed first followed by a slash (/). Following the slash is the name of the individual or individuals to whom the letter is written.|||Example: TS/RSD indicates a letter written by Ted Shawn to Ruth St. Denis.
The Ted Shawn collection is arranged in nine series:
- approximately 6000 items
(Gift of Walter Terry)
- (16 items) Part of a series of letters sent out by Shawn each February in lieu of a Christmas greeting. They highlight events in his life from the preceding year. (Letters from 11 years are missing: 1946, 1948, 1954, 1960-66, 1969.)
- 10 items Typescript for parts 2 through 10, 1922-1945 (part 6 is missing). Shawn used an edited version of this proposed book for his One Thousand and One Night Stands.Part 5 is an edited version of Ted Shawn's correspondence with Lucien Price, 1933-1938, which mainly relates to Jacob's Pillow and Ted Shawn and his Men Dancers (for a complete set of this correspondence see section IA of this collection).
- IV. WRITTEN WORKS BY TED SHAWN, 1910-1941 12 items Includes short stories, poems, and motion picture scenarios which Shawn wrote while he was a student at the University of Denver, 1910-1911; also includes an article, “Theatre as a Triune Art” (Direction.Darien, Ct. Apr-May, 1941) and other miscellaneous writings.
- V. WRITTEN WORKS ABOUT TED SHAWN, 1926-1950 15 items Includes 5 short articles (1930-1940) about Shawn's accomplishments as a dancer; 2 interviews with Shawn (1941); reviews of the Denishawn Dancers in the Orient (1926); reviews of Shawn in Australia (1947) and Shawn in Boston (1930); and other miscellaneous writings.
- VI. NOTES FOR TED SHAWN'S THIRTY-THREE YEARS OF AMERICAN DANCE approximately 10 items Shawn's notes for his book, published in Pittsfield, Ma. in 1959. Includes a chronology of dance events from 1927 to 1956.
(Diaries, Route lists, Financial records)
- VII. DENISHAWN DANCERS; TED SHAWN AND HIS MEN DANCERS approximately 30 items Ted Shawn's diaries closed until 1982. Includes route lists, financial records, and diaries kept by Ted Shawn during American and Oriental tours with the Danishawn Dancers (1915-1930); also includes route lists from Shawn's company of men dancers (1935-1942).
(Notes, Lectures, Manuscripts)
- VIII. DELSARTE SYSTEM OF EXPRESSION approximately 100 items Includes 2 typescripts, book orders, reviews, advertisements, and editing notes for Ted Shawn's book, Every Little Movement(1954). Also includes information collected by Ted Shawn regarding Delsarte, such as: notes, lectures, and manuscripts of Ted Shawn, Grace Hickox, Henriette Hovey, and others; magazine articles; excerpts from books and masters theses; and a copy of Florence James Adams: A Sketch of her Life and Workby Joseph Anthony Milburn.
- IX. MISCELLANEOUS approximately 10 items Includes materials relating to some of the later performances of Ruth St. Denis (1944-1957) and miscellaneous items from relatives of Shawn and St. Denis.