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Finding Aid for the Ray Spencer papers, 1937-1984; bulk 1930s-1960s
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Table of contents What's This?

Container List

 

Contracts 1940s, 1952

Physical Description: (Box 3)

Scope and Content Note

The series includes two files. One file contains a small amount of contractual agreements for The Boomerang , My Own True Love, technicolor shorts, and agent services. The other file is related exclusively to the Herb Little and Ray Spencer partnership. The files are arranged alphabetically by file title.
Box 3, Folder 6

Contractual agreements file 1943-1944, 1947

Note

Agreements for The Boomerang, My Own True Love, Technicolor shorts, and agent services.
Box 3, Folder 5

Herb Little and Ray Spencer partnership - correspondence and contracts 1952

 

Correspondence File 1940s, early 1950s, 1960s

Physical Description: (Box 3)

Scope and Content Note

The bulk of the correspondence series consists of incoming rejection letters and a few outgoing submission letters for projects Spencer was trying to put forward via story submissions. No script materials were found with the correspondence. Of a particular interest is note from the office of Langston Hughes (written by Nate White) with regards to the Hollywood Mammy sketch. Other correspondence appears personal in nature, but often mentions projects in which Spencer was involved. The files are arranged alphabetically by file title. A portion of the file titles were supplied or enhanced by the processor.
Box 3, Folder 19

Caldwell Colt - Mexico correspondence 1958, 1966-1967, 1969

Note

Letters to and from RS.
Box 3, Folder 9

Correspondence 1942, 1946,1948, 1950, 1952-1960

Note

Mostly submission and rejection letters that appear to be for projects Spencer was interested in putting forward.
Box 3, Folder 10

Correspondence 1951

Note

Incoming and outgoing letters that appear to be a personal, yet may mention possible projects.
Box 3, Folder 18

Florence and George - Mexico correspondence 1968

Note

Letters to and from RS.
Box 3, Folder 20

Fred Allert - Peru correspondence 1966

Note

Letters to and from RS.
Box 3, Folder 17

Hector and Pixley - Mexico correspondence 1968

Note

Letters to and from RS.
Box 3, Folder 3

Hollywood Mammy - sketch number (2 copies) 1951

Note

With short letter from Langston Hughes' office written by Nate White for Langston Hughes
Box 3, Folder 16

Presidencia Municipal - Mexico correspondence 1967-1970

Note

Communications from the Presidencia Municipal (in Spanish)
 

Deep are the Roots 1945, 1947-1948

Physical Description: (Boxes 1, 2, 7)

Scope and Content Note

The Deep Are the Roots series is comprised of files that relate to the West Coast production of the play in which Ray Spencer was the producer, ca. 1947-1948. Included among the files are a mix of correspondence, notes, press clippings, publicity ephemera, a small amount of photographs, and a script. The series is arranged alphabetically by file titles which reflect the contents of the folders.
Box 2, Folder 5

Deep Are the Roots - audience comment cards for San Francisco performance no date

Note

Small collection of comment cards that are soiled and maybe difficult to read.
Box 2, Folder 1

Deep Are the Roots - audience comment cards for San Francisco performance A- F no date

Box 2, Folder 2

Deep Are the Roots - audience comment cards for San Francisco performance G- L no date

Box 2, Folder 3

Deep Are the Roots - audience comment cards for San Francisco performance M- R no date

Box 2, Folder 4

Deep Are the Roots - audience comment cards for San Francisco performance S- Z no date

Box 1, Folder 11

Deep Are the Roots - clippings 1947 Sep - Oct (some undated)

Box 1, Folder 12

Deep Are the Roots - clippings 1947 Dec

Box 1, Folder 13

Deep Are the Roots - clippings 1948 Jan

Box 1, Folder 14

Deep Are the Roots - clippings 1948 Jan

Box 1, Folder 15

Deep Are the Roots - clippings 1948 Jan 6

Note

Issue of Fortnight: The Newsmagazine of California (vol. 4 issue 2).
Box 1, Folder 16

Deep Are the Roots - clippings 1948 Feb

Box 1, Folder 17

Deep Are the Roots - clippings 1948 Feb

Box 1, Folder 18

Deep Are the Roots - clippings 1948 Mar - Apr

Box 1, Folder 19

Deep Are the Roots - clippings 1948 Dec

Box 1, Folder 7

Deep Are the Roots - contracts 1947-1948

Box 1, Folder 4

Deep Are the Roots - correspondence with Leah Salisbury 1947

Box 1, Folder 5

Deep Are the Roots - letter to George Heller from Vincent 1945 June 28

Box 1, Folder 6

Deep Are the Roots - notes 1947

Note

List of individual's names (thought to be for financial support).
Box 7, Folder 1

Deep are the Roots - photographs (7 items) ca. 1940s

Note

Includes group photo with Rose Hobart, Roddy McDowell, Lena Horne and others. Six production stills that may include James Edwards, Franki Lynn, Rose Hobart, Curt Conway, Robert Warwick or Jessie Coles Grayson.
Box 1, Folder 8

Deep Are the Roots - post-production correspondence 1948

Box 1, Folder 3

Deep Are the Roots - pre-production correspondence 1947

Box 1, Folder 10

Deep Are the Roots - press releases 1947-1948

Box 1, Folder 2

Deep Are the Roots - production notes 1947-1948

Note

With contracts, budgets, and ticket information.
Box 1, Folder 9

Deep Are the Roots - programs and publicity 1948

Box 1, Folder 1

Deep Are the Roots - script 1945

 

Paramount Pictures 1937-1944

Physical Description: (Boxes 2-6)

Scope and Content Note

It is believed that Ray Spencer was employed by Paramount Pictures as a member of the reading staff and that this small collection of material may have been written or collected by Spencer during his tenure there. The series includes one estimating script for Your Son is My Brother, story synopses, reader reports, and a small number of The New York Bulletin Stories, is a newsletter thought to be published by Paramount Pictures. A small number of the synopses were written by Spencer. Additionally, many of the story synopses include forwards written by William Dozier, head of Paramount's story and writing department. The series is arranged by project or publication title.
Box 6, Folder 35

Aerial Gunner - synopsis for the original story by unknown author 1942 Oct 21

Box 6, Folder 21

All Out Irene - synopsis for the original story by HI Phillips 1943 July 13

Box 6, Folder 26

Also the Hills - synopsis for the original story by Frances Parkinson Keyes 1943 Sep 29

Box 6, Folder 7

Around the Horn to Matrimony - synopsis for the original story by Tom S. Hyland 1942 Nov 6

Box 6, Folder 6

Beggars of the Sea - synopsis for the original story by Houston Branch and Frank Waters 1942 Nov 5

Box 6, Folder 20

Boomerang - synopsis for the original story by Henry Blankfort and Leo Mittler 1943 May 19

Box 5, Folder 21

Bundles For Freedom - synopsis for the original story by Milton Holmes 1942 Jan 30

Box 6, Folder 34

China - synopsis for the original story by Frank Butler 1942 Nov 9

Box 6, Folder 12

Counterattack - synopsis for the original story by Janet Marshall and Philip Stevenson 1943 Feb 8

Box 5, Folder 25

Decoy - synopsis for the original story by James Edward Grant 1942 June 1

Box 6, Folder 23

Equinox - synopsis for the original story by Allan Seager 1943 July 26

Box 6, Folder 30

Fallen Sparrow - synopsis for the original story by Dorothy B. Hughes no date

Box 6, Folder 11

Gaunt Woman - synopsis for the original story by Edmund Gilligan 1943 Jan 11

Box 6, Folder 8

Great Big Doorstep (The) - synopsis for the original story by Frances Goodrich and Albert Hackett 1942 Nov 20

Box 6, Folder 9

Home Front (The) - synopsis for the original story by Mildred Cram 1942 Dec 12

Box 6, Folder 1

Hostages - synopsis for the original story by Stefan Heym 1942 June 30

Box 6, Folder 33

Hungry Hill - synopsis for the original story by Daphne Du Maurier no date

Box 5, Folder 19

Jackpot - synopsis for the original story by Joan Harrison and Helen Deutsch 1941 Dec 11

Box 6, Folder 18

Land for the Living - synopsis for the original story by George Batson 1943 May 8

Box 6, Folder 29

Marriage for Two - synopsis for the original story by Herman J. Mankiewicz and Fritz Kortner 1944 Jan 31

Box 6, Folder 2

Mary Smith - USA synopsis for the original story by Mildred Cram (2 copies) 1942 July 6

Box 3

New York Bulletin Stories - News no date

Note

In folder numbers 21-23.
Box 4

New York Bulletin Stories - News no date, 1942-1943

Note

In folder numbers 1-21.
Box 5

New York Bulletin Stories - News 1943-1944

Note

In folder numbers 1-18.
Box 6, Folder 31

Number One - synopsis for the original story by John Dos Passos no date

Box 5, Folder 24

Only One Storm - synopsis for the original story by Granville Hicks 1942 April 14

Box 6, Folder 28

Over Twenty One - synopsis for the original story by Ruth Gordon 1944 Jan 5

Box 6, Folder 38

Paramount Reader Reports not written by Spencer 1937, 1940-1942

Note

Bulk of reports created by Mildred Barish
Box 6, Folder 13

Patriots (The) - synopsis for the original story by Sidney Kingsley 1943 Feb 8

Box 6, Folder 5

Pirate (The) - synopsis for the original story by JN Behrman 1942 Nov 3

Box 6, Folder 25

Razor's Edge (The) - synopsis for the original story by W. Somerset Maugham 1943 Sep 29

Box 2, Folder 6

Reader reports written by Spencer for Paramount Pictures, Inc. 1942-1943

Box 6, Folder 19

Ready Willing and 4F - synopsis for the original story by Brain Marlow 1943 May 12

Box 6, Folder 27

Simone - synopsis for the original story by Lion Feuchtwanger 1943 Nov 24

Box 5, Folder 22

Sound of an American (The) - synopsis for the original story by Stephen Longstreet 1942 Feb 19

Box 6, Folder 16

Spur and the Bridle (The) - synopsis for the original story by Martha Albrand 1943 April 13

Box 6, Folder 4

Strip for Action - synopsis for the original story by Howard Lindsay and Russel Crouse 1942 Oct 9

Box 6, Folder 10

Survival - synopsis for the original story by Phyllis Bottome 1942 Dec 21

Box 6, Folder 3

Thus Liberty - Or Death - synopsis for the original story by Ruth Mitchell 1942 Sep 1

Box 6, Folder 17

Tomorrow the World - synopsis for the original story by James Gow and Arnaud d'Usseau 1943 April 23

Box 6, Folder 15

Tomorrow's Harvest - synopsis for the original story by Alfred Maury 1943 March 5

Box 6, Folder 32

True to Life - synopsis for the original story by Don Hartman no date

Box 6, Folder 24

Two of Us (The) - synopsis for the original story by Richard Sherman 1943 Aug 6

Box 6, Folder 36

Untitled synopsis and script material no date

Box 5, Folder 20

Washington Angle (The) - synopsis for the original story by Leonard Q. Ross and Leonard Spigelglass 1941 Dec 31

Box 6, Folder 14

What Became of Anna Bolton - synopsis for the original story by Louis Bromfield 1943 Feb 10

Box 5, Folder 23

Without Love - synopsis for the original story by Philip Barry 1942 March 27

Box 6, Folder 22

You Bring Me Luck - synopsis for the original story by Albert Treynor 1943 July 19

Box 6, Folder 37

Your Son is My Brother by Mel Riddle - estimating script 1943 May 12

Note

Short subject, produced at RKO Studios, Hollywood for Masonic Service Association.
 

Writings by Ray Spencer 1937-1946, 1960s, 1970s

Physical Description: (Boxes 2-3)

Scope and Content Note

The Writings by Ray Spencer series is a mix of script material and reader reports. The script material includes a small number of scripts, loose pages, notes, or synopses for projects believed to be written by or in partnership with Ray Spencer including Adventures of a Gun, The Black Suitcase, Bamboo Trap, Eleventh Hour, and Injunction Granted, among others. For many of the projects it is not clear if they were created for television or motion picture and/or if they were ultimately produced. It is worth noting the collection does not appear to include script material related to Bonnie Lassie, Star Bright, Boogie Woogie, and Crackup, for which Spencer is credited. The small number of reader reports, includes items which are believed to have been written by Ray Spencer and are not identified with any studio. The files in the series are arranged alphabetically project titles or by file titles which reflects the contents of the folders. Most files titles were supplied by the processor.
Box 2, Folder 8

Adventures of a Gun - synopsis 1942 Dec 3

Note

Original story by Carl Foreman and Ray Spencer.
Box 2, Folder 10

Bamboo Trap - notes and clippings for story ca. 1969, 1976, 1977

Box 2, Folder 14

Black Suitcase (The) - screenplay ca. 1960

Note

Screenplay based upon characters and incidents in Cabbages and Kings; includes copyright registration and information.
Box 2, Folder 13

Cabbages and Kings - synopsis and episode notes no date

Box 2, Folder 11

Eleventh Hour (The) - an original story for the screen by Carl Foreman and Ray Spencer 1942 Aug 18

Note

Title "Present for Windy" found on title page has been lined out.
Box 2, Folder 15

Galveston - script material and handwritten notes ca. 1944

Box 2, Folder 9

Gun Story (The) - synopsis 1949 Nov 1

Note

Revised version of Adventures of a Gun by Carl Foreman and Ray Spencer
Box 2, Folder 16

Ideas and notes for unknown projects no date

Box 2, Folder 17

Injunction Granted - revised script 1946

Note

Federal Theatre Play script #9.
Box 2, Folder 18

Injunction Granted - script materials and loose pages 1946

Box 2, Folder 20

Madman's Holiday - list of title ideas no date

Note

Thought to be a project by RS.
Box 3, Folder 2

Opening - script material, handwritten notes and clippings no date

Box 2, Folder 7

Reader reports written by RS for unknown studios 1937, 1941-1944

Box 3, Folder 1

Sejanus - script material no date

Box 2, Folder 12

Sextette - synopsis of a revised version by Carl Foreman and Ray Spencer 1949 Oct 1

Note

Original story titled The Adventures of a Gun.
Box 2, Folder 19

Ten-cent Saint (The) - reader reports from Play Bureau, Federal Theater Project 1937

Note

Reader reports for project thought to be co-written by RS using the pseudonym Robert Owen.
 

Helen Spencer 1940s, 1950s;

Physical Description: (Box 3)

Scope and Content Note

The series is includes a small collection of letters and reader reports related to Ray Spencer's wife, Helen Spencer. The letters were written to family and friends from Helen Spencer during a period of time when she and Ray Spencer lived in Mexico (ca.1954 and 1959). The small number of reader reports appear to be written by Helen Spencer for MGM and Republic Pictures (ca. 1943-1953). The series is arranged by file titles which reflect the contents of the folders. All file titles were supplied by the processor.
Box 3, Folder 14

Mexico correspondence from Helen [Spencer] to family and friends 1954, 1959

Box 3, Folder 13

Reader Reports written by Helen Spencer for MGM and Republic Studios 1943-1945, 1951-1953

 

Plaintiffs Against the Blacklist 1960-1961

Physical Description: (Box 3)

Scope and Content Note

The series includes one file of clippings and printed ephemera about the group, Plaintiffs Against the Blacklist. Plaintiffs vs. the Blacklist was a group of twelve writers and actors engaged in an anti-trust suit against major motion picture producing companies of the Motion Picture Producers Association. The goal of their legal action was to win a Federal Court decision declaring the blacklist illegal.
Box 3, Folder 7

Plaintiffs Against the Blacklist - clippings, printed ephemera and notes 1960-1961

Note

Related to legal action to declare the blacklist illegal. Materials are about the group's efforts.
 

Miscellaneous Files 1965 and no date

Physical Description: (Box 3)

Scope and Content Note

This series contains a mix of items not otherwise related to other materials in the collections. The items include unidentified caricature drawings, printed ephemera, and other miscellanea. Most of the material is not dated. The series has no specific arrangement. All file titles were supplied by the processor.
Box 3, Folder 11

Drawings (sketches) of unidentified character/cartoon images no date

Box 3, Folder 8

Literary Agents - list and notes no date

Box 3, Folder 12

Sheet Music no date

Note

Music and lyrics for "Joe Hill" and "The Quilting Bee."
Box 3, Folder 4

Sticks and Stones - playbill, budget info and papers no date

Note

R. Spencer listed as Stage Manager.
Box 3, Folder 15

Tributes to Philip Stevenson (Lars Lawrence) 1965