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MS Thr 957

Ellis, E. Raymond, 1891-1946, collector. E. Raymond Ellis toy theater and puppetry collection, 1823-1949: Guide.

Houghton Library, Harvard Library, Harvard University


Harvard University, Cambridge, Massachusetts 02138 USA

© President and Fellows of Harvard College

Descriptive Summary

Location: Harvard Depository
Call No.: MS Thr 957
Repository: Houghton Library, Harvard Library, Harvard University
Creator: Ellis, E. Raymond, 1891-1946, collector.
Title: E. Raymond Ellis toy theater and puppetry collection,
Date(s): 1823-1949.
Quantity: 1 collection (7 linear feet (23 boxes)
Language of materials: Collection materials are in English, German, French, Danish, Spanish, and Czech.
Abstract: Collection of and about toy theaters and puppets, assembled by Harvard graduate and Harvard library employee, E. Raymond Ellis.

Immediate Source of Acquisition:

No accession number; Gift of E. Raymond Ellis; received: date unknown. A few items appear to have been added at a later date from a different source.

Processing Information:

Processed by: Bonnie B. Salt

Conditions Governing Access:

There are no restrictions on physical access to most of this material. Collection is open for research.
Item (115) is restricted: fragile; consult curatorial staff.
This collection is not housed at the Houghton Library but is shelved offsite at the Harvard Depository. Retrieval requires advance notice. Readers should check with Houghton Public Services staff to determine what material is offsite and retrieval policies and times.

Preferred Citation for Publication:

E. Raymond Ellis Toy Theater and Puppetry Collection, 1823-1949 (MS Thr 957). Harvard Theatre Collection, Houghton Library, Harvard University.

Biographical / Historical

E. Raymond Ellis (Emmons Raymond Ellis, Jr.) was born in Cambridge, Massachusetts in 1918, the son of Emmons Raymond Ellis, Sr. (1850-1918) and Jennie S. Ives Ellis. He attended Cambridge Latin School, then received an AB from Harvard College with the class of 1916. For four years he worked for his family's Boston wholesale produce business, J. R. Ellis & Sons, then in January of 1921 he became a library assistant at Harvard. He died in 1946 and left a bequest to Harvard establishing the Jenny Ives Ellis Fund for purchasing books for the Harvard College Library.


Organized into the following series:

Scope and Contents

Collection includes: letters to E. Raymond Ellis from dealers, enthusiasts, and scholars of toy theater materials such as Ifan Kyrle Fletcher, Paul McPharlin, A. E. Wilson and others; autograph manuscript lists of this collection, autograph manuscript translations into English (by Ellis) of various toy theater play scripts; many printed items relating to toy theaters including pamphlets, leaflets, lists, catalogs, play scripts, picture books, price lists, journals, etc...; and toy theaters with scenes, characters, play scripts, metal slides, original boxes and wrappers, advertisements, and other items. Makers include: Alfred Jacobsen, B. Pollock, J. H. Singer (New York), Redington's Juvenile Drama, Schreibers Kinder-Theater [J. F. Schreiber], Webb's Juvenile Drama, and many others. Also includes a few items relating to puppets.


This collection is shelved offsite at the Harvard Depository. See access restrictions below for additional information.

Container List