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Joseph Jefferson Collection

Collection 369

Jefferson, Joseph (1829–1905). Collection, 1874–1922, n.d.

2.5 inches

Joseph Jefferson, also known as Joe Jefferson, was an American actor born in Philadelphia to a theatrical family. He was one of the most famous 19th century American actors, and possibly the earliest born actor to appear in a motion picture. He appeared onstage as an infant, and made his acting debut at age four. His most famous role was Rip Van Winkle, which he debuted in 1859 and continued to play for forty years. After the Civil War he bought Orange Island near New Iberia, La., which he renamed Jefferson Island, and where he built his home.

This collection consists of correspondence, photographs, clippings, and programs.


A. Joseph Jefferson
1-01 Correspondence
    From Noah Morrison to Mr. Ellis B. Usher, typed, re: purchasing the autobiography of Jefferson, February 23, 1909
    From Jefferson, partial date
    From Jefferson, handwritten, n.d.
    From Jefferson to J. Barotow, (Boston), handwritten, dated October 24. No year
1-01a Correspondence
    from Mrs. Emily L. Graul to Miss Helen Ogden, handwritten, re: visiting the Joseph Jeffersons, handwritten, September 3, 1925
1-02 Photographs
    Joseph Jefferson (2 photos)
    Jefferson’s home, Jefferson Island, n.d.
1-03 Clippings
    “Are we so soon forgot when we are gone?” Remembrance of those words, as they were spoken by Jefferson… (1905)
    “Here Lived Last of the Warrens”, September 24, 1922
    Poem, written by Joseph Jefferson, n.d. (no title)
1-04 Programs
    Boston Theatre, Joseph Jefferson…Rip Van Winkle. (4 Acts), n.d.
    The Globe Theatre, Monday, November 14, 1881, Joseph Jefferson, Rip Van Winkle
B. Other Actors
1-05 Photographs
    Ethel Barrymore
    unidentified woman sitting in rocking chair with young girl sitting on arm of chair
    same women, holding a book
1-06 Programs
    Boston Museum, February 2, 1874, “Little Em’ly!, featuring William Warren” (Joe Jefferson family member)
    Chicago, Grand Opera House, September 25, 1874, Mr. Edwin Booth, “Othello”
    Davidson, Milwaukee’s Leading Theatre, September 27, 1926, George Arliss in “Old English”
    Davidson, Milwaukee’s Leading Theatre, September 28, 1925, Richard Brinsley Sheridan, “The Rivals”