Scope and arrangement
The Charles Pierce papers document Pierce's career from the late 1960s through the early 1990s. The papers reflect Pierce's professional life through a comprehensive collection of clippings, some publicity materials and programs, and also photographs of Pierce in some of his many roles. His personal correspondence includes letters and notes from friends and fans, many of them well-known personalities. The collection further contains some papers and photographs relating to female impersonators and their history in the performing arts.
The Charles Pierce papers are arranged in six series:
- 1971-199818 folders
Correspondence is made up entirely of incoming letters, and is arranged alphabetically. The letters, notes, and cards are personal in nature, and include many congratulatory notes from friends written after seeing performances of his. Among the correspondents are Julie Harris, Hal Holbrook, Hildegarde, Angela Lansbury, Anita Loos, Bob Mowers, Kitt Russell and Liz Smith.
- ca. 1974-199613 folders
These are made up of biographical files, Pierce's files on female impersonators, Charles Pierce greeting cards, and writings by Pierce. Biographical material includes the transcript of an oral history interview given by Pierce for Southern Methodist University in 1989. Material on female impersonators is made up mostly of clippings, and a copy of the book Great Pretenders by Anthony Slide, which includes a section on Pierce. (Photographs of female impersonators are in the Photographs series).
- ca. 1971-198814 folders
Scripts include Charles Pierce's television and movie roles, as well as a small file on "The Charles Pierce Show."
- ca. 1954-199013 folders
These include photos, slides, and some photocopies of photographs not in the collection. The photographs are primarily of Charles Pierce, both as himself, and dressed in his various roles as Bette Davis, Katharine Hepburn, Tallulah Bankhead, Mae West, etc. Also included are photographs of various female impersonators including Julian Eltinge, Ricky Renee, Kitt Russell, and Danny Windsor. The slides are outtakes from photo shoots to create the Charles Pierce greeting cards. Photocopies are of Pierce family photos and other miscellaneous shots of Pierce.
- 1963-199824 folders 1 flat box
This is arranged by genre and is made up of clippings, publicity, programs, oversize material and files relating to several performances by Charles Pierce. The clippings are arranged chronologically, and include reviews, interviews and articles documenting nearly 30 years of performance by Charles Pierce. The publicity and oversize items include flyers, posters, magazine covers and other public relations material. Mr. Pierce's "make-up mouse" has been transferred to the Division's *T-Cabinet.
- ca. 1969-19872 volumes
Two volumes of clippings, photographs and programs documenting Charles Pierce's career from 1969 to 1987.