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Guide to the Actors' Equity Association Records WAG.011

Tamiment Library and Robert F. Wagner Labor Archive
Elmer Holmes Bobst Library
70 Washington Square South
2nd Floor
New York, NY 10012
(212) 998-2596

Tamiment Library and Robert F. Wagner Labor Archives

Collection processed by K. Kevyne Baar, 2003-2006. Preliminary processing by Martha S. Lo Monaco and Miriam Frank, 1987.

This finding aid was produced using ArchivesSpace on January 30, 2020
Finding aid written in English using Describing Archives: A Content Standard

 Edited by Hillel Arnold for compliance with DACS and Tamiment Required Elements for Archival Description Jasmine Larkin edited Series X. Unprocessed Materials. In addition, the finding aid was edited for compliance with DACS and ACM Required Elements for Archival Description Edited by Nicole Greenhouse for updated administrative information and archived websites 2012 , October 2017 , January 2020

Scope and Content Note

The Actors' Equity Association records consists of all of the earliest records of the organization (1913-1929), as well as general files, membership records, contract files, claims, correspondence with other unions, guilds and federations, photographs, ephemera, websites, and one vidocassette. The date range for these materilas is 1913-2007.

The early records of Actors' Equity include materials created by or relating to a number of luminaries of the theatre, including W.C. Fields, Helen Hayes, Fanny Brice, Eddie Cantor, Florenz Ziegfeld, Basil Rathbone, Maurice Evans, Anita Loos and many others. These famous names constitute only a few of the actors, directors, producers, agents, and other theatrical personalities whose work is chronicled in the Equity collection. This material offers a vivid glimpse into the lives and stage careers that have made up twentieth-century American theatre. The General Files series includes documentation of the presidencies of Ralph Bellamy, Frederick O'Neal and Theodore Bikel, as well as the issues of agents' commissions, pensions, health benefits and housing.


The collection consists of ten series:

  1. I. Constitutions, By-laws and Rule Books, 1914-1979
  2. II. Foundations of Actors' Equity, 1913-1929
  3. III. General Files
  4. IV. Membership Files, Dec. 1913-1978
  5. V. Contracts/Agreements/Codes
  6. VI. Claims, 1915-1986
  7. VII. Other Unions/Guilds/Federations
  8. VIII: Oversize/Scrapbooks
  9. IX: Archived Website
  10. X: Photographs and Ephemera