Scope and Content
Organization and Arrangement
Title: Lester Barron Collection of Performing Artist Autographs,
Date (inclusive): 1869-1975
Collection number: 1378
Creator: Barron, Lester
3 boxes (1.5 linear ft.)
University of California, Los Angeles. Library. Department of Special Collections.
Los Angeles, California 90095-1575
Physical location: Stored off-site at SRLF. Advance notice is required for access to the collection. Please contact the UCLA Library, Department
of Special Collections Reference Desk for paging information.
Restrictions on Use and Reproduction
Property rights to the physical object belong to the UCLA Library,
Department of Special Collections. Literary rights, including copyright,
are retained by the creators and their heirs. It is the responsibility of
the researcher to determine who holds the copyright and pursue the
copyright owner or his or her heir for permission to publish where The UC
Regents do not hold the copyright.
Restrictions on Access
COLLECTION STORED OFF-SITE AT SRLF: Advance notice required for access.
Additional Physical Form Available
A copy of the original version of this online finding aid is available at the UCLA Department of Special Collections for in-house
consultation and may be obtained for a fee. Please contact:
- Public Services Division
- UCLA Library, Department of Special Collections
- Room A1713, Charles E. Young Research Library
- Box 951575
- Los Angeles, CA 90095-1575
- Telephone: 310/825-4988 (10:00 a.m. - 4:45 p.m., Pacific
- Email: email@example.com
Provenance/Source of Acquisition
- Gift of Lester Barron, 1984.
- The original collector, Charles Norton Outcault, was the nephew of cartoonist Richard Fenton Outcault; he began collecting
autographs at the age of sixteen, and most of the autographs were obtained by mail between 1912-15.
[Identification of item], Lester Barron Collection of Performing Artist Autographs (Collection 1378). Department of Special
Collections, Charles E. Young Research Library, University of California, Los Angeles.
The Lester Barron Collection consists mainly of autographs of famous personalities from the late nineteenth and early twentieth
centuries. The original collector, Charles Norton Outcault, requested by mail, the autographs of various celebrities and public
figures of his time. In response to his requests, he received not only autographs, but personal notes, letters, photographs,
original handwritten music, poems, and booklets. Many of the items he collected are autographed by performing artists, such
as musicians, composers, conductors, opera singers, dancers, actors, and actresses. The collection also includes autographs
of authors, artists, politicians, presidents, and other notable public figures.
In addition to the autographs, the Barron Collection contains some miscellaneous items which do not appear to be directly
related to the rest of the collection. These items include letters from a civil war soldier, letters from artist Dean Cornwell,
one music score, and various theater playbills.
The collection was donated to the University Research Library, Department of Special Collections by Mr. Lester Barron. Little
is known about Mr. Barron or how the collection came into his possession. The original collector, Charles Norton Outcault,
was the nephew of American cartoonist, Richard Fenton Outcault. The late cartoonist was well known for creating the first
color comic strip and the popular
cartoon character, Buster Brown. Charles Outcault was just sixteen years old when he started the collection. He obtained most
of his autographs by mail from 1912 to 1915. Many celebrities, reminiscent of their own youth, sent him notes and letters
containing personal messages.
A photocopy of a newspaper article describing the collection is available in the administrative files of the Department. This
article appears to have been printed in a San Diego newspaper in 1931. There are, however, several discrepancies in the article's
description of the collection and the actual contents of the collection at the time it was received by the Department in 1984.
Several items described in the article are no longer present in the collection. The reader should consult the following pages
for a list of the actual items contained in the collection.
When the collection was received by the Department, no particular order or arrangement was discernible. An alphabetical arrangement
was eventually imposed to facilitate access by the names of the various personalities whose autographs appear in the collection.
The collection was sorted and arranged by Lorna Lueck and Michael Jerome, Graduate School of Library and Information Science.
Scope and Content
Collection consists of autographs of famous personalities including performing artists, authors, and politicians. Some are
accompanied with personal notes, letters, photographs, or other ephemera. Autographs include signatures of Robert Jones Burdett,
Thomas Edison, Arthur Foote, Helen Keller, Rudyard Kipling, Nellie Melba, James Whitcomb Riley, Theodore Roosevelt, Herbert
Spencer, Ellen Terry, and Booker T. Washington. Also includes correspondence from Dean Cornwell addressed to Frank as well
as 3 Civil War letters and 4 theater playbills. Includes the music score for
Feather Your Nest.
Organization and Arrangement
Arranged in the following series:
- Autographs organized alphabetically by last name (Boxes 1-3).
- Letters, theater playbills, and music score (Box 3).
The following terms have been used to index the description of this collection in the library's online public access catalog.
Outcault, Charles Norton.