Collection MSS 029 - Elinor Hughes Collection

Identity elements

Reference code

US MBE MSS 029

Name and location of repository

Level of description

Collection

Title

Elinor Hughes Collection

Date(s)

  • 1927 - 1950 (Creation)

Extent

5.25 linear feet

Name of creator

(1906-1998)

Biographical history

Elinor Hughes served as a major critic for Boston’s theater community for nearly forty years. Born in Cambridge, she attended Radcliff College and immediately began working at the Boston Herald following graduation. She initially served as assistant to renowned critic Philip Hale, which included maintaining his theater clipping files. Upon his retirement in 1934, she took over his position as theater critic for the Herald, becoming first woman drama critic for a major Boston newspaper.

As a reviewer, Hughes predominantly acted as the Drama and Film Critic for the Boston Herald, contributing to the columns “The Play’s the Thing” and “Screened at the Movies.” Additionally, she contributed articles highlighting and interviewing film and stage actors. Aside from her work at the Herald, Hughes also contributed to the Junior League News Bulletin and the Hollywood Reporter. She collected clippings of these articles through her career and compiled them in bound volumes, which were indexed with names of plays, films, and actors.

Content and structure elements

Scope and content

The Elinor Hughes Collection is a collection of materials relating to Ms. Hughes’s career as a theater and film critic. Much of the collection consists of bound volumes of her articles written for the Boston Herald, with some articles written for the Junior League News Bulletin and the Hollywood Reporter. The collection also contains the book “The American Burlesque,” which features five articles with illustrations on the American Theater in 1893.

System of arrangement

The collection is arranged chronologically in 38 volumes of clippings. One published book is included.

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Languages of the material

  • English

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Finding aids

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Custodial history

Immediate source of acquisition

The collection was donated by Elinor Hughes in October of 1986.

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Archivist's note

Finding aid created by Brendan Higgins; last updates December 6, 2013

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