Kathryn Beals papers, 1927-1928, 1976, 1994

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Kathryn Beals papers, 1927-1928, 1976, 1994

MS 440

Collection Summary

Creator: Beals, Kathryn
Collection Name: Kathryn Beals papers
Inclusive Dates: 1927-1928,
Inclusive Dates: 1976,
Inclusive Dates: 1994
Physical Description:.75 linear ft
Abstract:Papers and Photographs, 1927-1928, 1979, 1994. This collection contains correspondence, photos, newspaper clippings, and ephemera of Kathryn Beals, including two letters to her sister from acquaintances upon Kathryn’s death in 1976. The bulk of the collection consists of correspondence with her family and ephemera she collected while touring with the Peters-Wright vaudeville dance troupe for 15 months in 1927-1928.
Collection Number:MS 440
Repository: University of Arizona Libraries, Special Collections
University of Arizona
PO Box 210055
Tucson, AZ 85721-0055
Phone: 520-621-6423
Fax: 520-621-9733
URL: http://speccoll.library.arizona.edu/

Biographical Note

Kathryn Beals was born on August 1907 and raised in San Francisco, California. Between 1927 and 1928 she spent 15 months touring the United States with the Peters-Wright vaudeville dance troupe The Wright Dancers. During this time she exchanged letters and photos with her mother, father, uncle, and sister, Carol. When she was not performing or rehearsing she visited tourist sites like the Niagara Falls, Coney Island, and Washington, D.C. In the collection there are photos of these trips. The collection includes some of the theater programs on which she appears for presentations in Boston, New York, and Houston. She also attended plays, musicals, movies. She attended the opening of musicals like Funny Face with Fred and Adele Astaire to which we have the theater program. The letters were kept by her mother and later entrusted to her sister. Don Langley later wrote the book Vaudeville Days with these letters.

During her vaudeville days she suffered a knee injury that would affect her for the rest of her life. In 1929 she married Rolland Langley. Ten months later she gave birth to the first of her three children. Years later they divorced. In 1943 she contracted an illness similar to polio and was confined to a wheelchair for the rest of her life. On October 27, 1976 she passed away.

Scope and Content Note

This collection contains correspondence, photos, a film, newspaper clippings, and ephemera of Kathryn Beals from the years 1927 to 1928 and two letters to her sister from acquaintances upon Kathryn’s death in 1976. Between the years 1927 to 1928 she toured with the Peters-Wright vaudeville dance troupe. During this time she wrote diligently to her close family members about the cities, theaters, sites, famous people she met, and daily experiences she had away from home. The letters are organized chronologically. There is also a typed version of most of the correspondence.


This collection is organized into two series.





It is the responsibility of the user to obtain permission to publish from the owner of the copyright (the institution, the creator of the record, the author or his/her transferees, heirs, legates, or literary executors). The user agrees to indemnify and hold harmless the Arizona Board of Regents for the University of Arizona, its officers, employees, and agents from and against all claims made by any person asserting that he or she is an owner of copyright.

Access Terms

Personal Name(s)
Beals, Kathryn

Entertainers--United States
Theaters—United States

Administrative Information

Credit Line

Kathryn Beals papers (MS 440). Special Collections, University of Arizona Libraries.

Container List

Series 1: Correspondence, 1927-1928 1976
This series is arranged chronologically by date. It contains the correspondence between Kathryn Beals and her close family members from 1927-1928 and two letters sent to her sister after she passed away.
11 Correspondence 1927 March-April
12 Correspondence 1927 May-July
13 Correspondence 1927 August-September
14 Correspondence 1927 October-November
15 Correspondence 1927 December 1928 January
16 Correspondence 1928 February-March
17 Correspondence 1928 April-May
18 Correspondence 1928 June-July 1928 November 1928
19 Correspondence-typed 1927-1928
110 Undated correspondence ca. 1927-1928
Series 2: Personal, 1927-1928, 1994
This series is organized by subject. It contains photos, a film, and ephemera collected during 1927-1928 and the copyright registration of the book Vaudeville Days by Kathryn Beals with Don Langley
21 Address book and expenses sheet ca. 1927-1928
22 G4 Guest Ranch brochure ca. 1928
23 Copyright registration of book Vaudeville Days 1994
24 Newspaper clippings 1927-1928
25 Portrait photos of Kathryn Beals 1927
26 Photos and postcards 1927-1928
27 Theater programs in which Kathryn Beals appears 1927-1928
28 Programs of musicals, movies, Plays, and concerts attended by Kathryn Beals 1927-1928
29 8mm film ca. 1927-1928