Preston Sawyer Film and Theater Collection MS.404

Debra Roussopoulos
University of California, Santa Cruz
1156 High Street
Santa Cruz 95064

Language of Material: English
Contributing Institution: University of California, Santa Cruz
Title: Preston Sawyer Film and Theater Collection
creator: Sawyer, Preston, 1899-1968
Identifier/Call Number: MS.404
Physical Description: 8 Linear Feet 27 boxes
Date (inclusive): 1907-1959
Abstract: This collection contains photographs, lobby cards, correspondence, ephemera, and realia.
Container: 1-27


Collection is open for research.

Publication Rights

Property rights for this collection reside with the University of California. Literary rights, including copyright, are retained by the creators and their heirs. The publication or use of any work protected by copyright beyond that allowed by fair use for research or educational purposes requires written permission from the copyright owner. Responsibility for obtaining permissions, and for any use rests exclusively with the user. For more information on copyright or to order a reproduction, please visit

Preferred Citation

Preston Sawyer Film and Theater Collection. MS 404. Special Collections and Archives, University Library, University of California, Santa Cruz.

Biographical / Historical

The Sawyer family of Santa Cruz, California, were avid movie and theater aficionados. The materials in this collection were gathered mainly by Preston Sawyer, and contributed to by Ariel and Gertrude Sawyer. Ariel Sawyer spent time working in Hollywood from 1922-1925. He appeared in several minor rolls including a small (uncredited) part in The Courtship of Miles Standish, 1923. Preston, an amateur photographer, spent time with actors and production crews when they filmed in Santa Cruz County. He obtained work as an extra in a few films including, Maid of Salem, 1937.
Preston Sawyer was employed as a proofreader and historian for the Santa Cruz Sentinel newspaper from 1935 to 1962, and collected Santa Cruz and California memorabilia over his entire lifetime. Ariel Sawyer ran the Sawyer Tile Company in Santa Cruz circa 1926-1966.
Ariel Sawyer donated Preston’s memorabilia, which included the materials in this collection, to both the UCSC Library and the Santa Cruz Public Library upon Preston’s death in 1968.

Scope and Content

This collection contains photographs of actors, entertainers, performers, theater scenes and movie sets during production. Photographs are often signed and dedicated to Preston or Ariel Sawyer. There is a substantial number of lobby cards, many from the silent film era spanning 1916-1922. In addition, the collection contains a small amount of correspondence related to Hollywood stars and movie production. Ephemera in the collection consists of brochures, playbills, press and promotional materials; realia consists of autograph books and a scrapbook.
The collection is separated into four series: 1. Photographs 2. Lobby cards 3. Correspondence 4. Ephemera and Realia

Related Materials

MS 82 Preston Sawyer Collection; MS 427 Santa Cruz County Historic Photograph Collection, Series 10 - Entertainment: Film in Santa Cruz.

Subjects and Indexing Terms

Motion pictures -- Collectibles


Photographs circa 1917-1955

Scope and Contents

This series contains portraits, a few carte de visites, promotional photos, and postcards of actors, performers, scenes and production sets, many of which are signed.
Box 1

Actors and performers including children circa 1917-1940

Box 2, Folder 1

Child actors and performers circa 1917-1930

Box 2, Folder 2-4

Child actors and performers circa 1920-1930

Box 2, Folder 5

Child actors and performers circa 1930-1940

Box 3, Folder 1

Actors and performers circa 1917-1929

Box 3, Folder 2

Actors and performers circa 1920-1930

Box 3, Folder 3

Actors and performers circa 1930-1939

Box 3, Folder 4

Actors and performers circa 1940-1955

Box 4, Folder 1

Actors - printed magazine images circa 1920-1929

Box 4, Folder 2

Buck Jones, Tom Mix, Madge Bellamy, Alma Rubens - hand painted and reproduced portraits, mounted on board circa 1920-1930

Box 4, Folder 3

Actors - scenes from Gone With the Wind, mounted on board circa 1939-1940

Box 5, Folder 1-2

Actors - film and theater circa 1918-1930

Box 5, Folder 3-6

Actors - film and theater circa 1920-1939

Box 5, Folder 7

"Leading Moving Picture Stars", Kromo Gravure collection sets no. 1-3 circa 1917-1922

Box 6

Actors - film and theater circa 1917-1945

Box 7

Postcards - male actors, cowboys circa 1918-1940

Box 8

Postcards - male actors, cowboys circa 1918-1940

Box 9

Postcards - female actors, cowgirls, women from Mac Sennet Comedies, children circa 1918-1940

Box 10

Postcards - groups, advertisements, sets and studios, circus acts and other entertainers of stage, opera, vaudeville, radio, TV, including sports figures circa 1918-1940

Box 11, Folder 1

Films and scenes - unidentified circa 1918-1930

Box 11, Folder 2

Films and scenes - unidentified circa 1930-1940

Box 11, Folder 3

Films and scenes - unidentified circa 1935-1947

Box 12, Folder 1

William S. Hart circa 1918-1920

Box 12, Folder 2

Actors and performers circa 1914-1930

Scope and Contents

Includes John Barrymore.
Box 12, Folder 3

Actors and performers circa 1937-1950

Scope and Contents

Includes Claudine Colbert and Fred MacMurray in Maid of Salem.

Lobby Cards 1914-1955

Scope and Contents

This series contains a large assortment of lobby cards in various sizes, from a wide range of films. A few include the corresponding press or campaign book, designed to promote the film and the actors, and used by theater distributors.
Lobby cards illustrate scenes from a particular film often with an actor's line or dialog included with the title. Many cards date from the silent film era, 1916-1922, and are hand-colored.


Lobby cards are organized alphabetically by film title and by size.
Box 13, Folder 1

Abraham Lincoln, Abilene Trail, Across the Plains, The Adventures of Robin Hood, The Adventures of Tom Sawyer, Alibi Ike, Anna and the King of Siam, Another Wild Idea 1924-1951

Box 13, Folder 2

Arizona, Arizona Ames, Arkansas Traveler, Artist's Muddles, The Atomic City 1918-1952

Box 13, Folder 3

Baby Mine, A Bedtime Story, Believe It or Not, Belle of Alaska, Belle of New York, Beloved Brat, Beloved Rogues, Benefits Forgot (aka Of Human Hearts), The Best Man 1917-1952

Box 13, Folder 4

The Big Adventure, The Big Gamble, The Big Wheel, Bill Henry, Bird of Paradise 1919-1951

Box 13, Folder 5

The Black Room, The Blue Bird, Blue Blazes Rawden, The Blue Eagle, Blondie's Blessed Event, Bomba on Panther Island, The Boss Didn't Say Good Morning 1918-1949

Box 13, Folder 6

Breaking the Ice - includes promotional press book 1938

Box 13, Folder 7

The Breath of Scandal, Breed of the Border, Breed of Men, Broadway Bad, Broadway Jones, Botany Bay, Boots, Buffalo Bill 1917-1952

Box 14, Folder 1

Call of the Wild, The Callahans and the Murphys, Callaway Went Thataway, Captain Blood, Captain January 1927-1951

Box 14, Folder 2

Captains Courageous, The Capture, Carmen, Carnival Boat, Cavalcade 1933-1958

Box 14, Folder 3

The Champ, A Christmas Carol, Clothes (Famous Players) 1914-1951

Box 14, Folder 4

The Charge of the Light Brigade; Charlie Chan At the Circus, Opera, and Races 1936

Box 14, Folder 5

Cocoanut Grove, Comanche Territory, Common Law, Courage, Cousin Kate, Cover Girl, Cradle Song, The Crimes of Dr. Forbes 1923-1950

Box 14, Folder 6

Dangerous Curve Ahead, The Dangerous Moment, The Dark Past, Darling How Could You?, Daughter of the Wolf 1919-1951

Box 14, Folder 7

Dead End, Death of a Salesman, The Desperate Search, The Devil's Playground, Disorderly Conduct 1932-1953

Box 14, Folder 8

A Doll's House, Donnie Dunagan, Don't Change Your Husband, The Dream Cheater 1918-1939

Box 15, Folder 1

Booth Tarkington's The Adventures and Emotions of Edgar Pomeroy, including: Edgar Camps Out, Edgar's Country Cousin, Edgar the Explorer, Edgar's Feast Day, Edgar's Little Saw, Edgar's Sunday Courtship, Edgar Takes the Cake, Edgar and Teacher's Pet 1920

Box 15, Folder 2

Elephant Boy, The Exile, Extravagance!, Eyes of the Soul 1919-1947

Box 15, Folder 3

Fabiola, The Fallen Idol, The False Faces, The Famous Ferguson Case, Father Is a Bachelor 1918-1951

Box 15, Folder 4

Father's Son, The Fighting Champ, The Fire Brigade, The Firecat, The First Baby, The Five Little Peppers in Trouble 1921-1940

Box 15, Folder 5

Fisherman's Wharf - includes promotional press book 1939

Box 15, Folder 6

Flame of Araby, The Flying Squadron, Footsteps in the Dark 1941-1951

Box 15, Folder 7

For Better, For Worse; For the Love of Ludwig, The Forbidden Thing, The Forbidden Woman, The Freshman, Fuss and Feathers 1919-1932

Box 16, Folder 1

The Gallant Fool, The General, Get Rich Quick 1926-1935

Box 16, Folder 2

Gentleman Marry Brunettes 1955

Box 16, Folder 3

Ginger, Give and Take circa 1938-1946

Box 16, Folder 4

Greased Lightning 1918

Box 16, Folder 5

The Great Man Votes - includes promotional campaign book 1939

Box 16, Folder 6

Good Gracious Annabelle, The Great Alone, Great Gatsby, Greatest Show on Earth, Gunning for Justice, Gunsmoke 1918-1952

Box 16, Folder 7

Half a Hero 1953

Box 16, Folder 8

Hawaii Calls - includes special issue stamp die 1938

Box 16, Folder 9

Hay Foot, Straw Foot 1919

Box 16, Folder 10

The Healer, Heart's Desire, Heart's of Humanity, Heidi, Her Man of War 1917-1937

Box 16, Folder 11

Heart of the Wilds 1918

Box 16, Folder 12

The Hidden Eye, Hidden Valley, His Own Law, His Wife's Relations 1917-1932

Box 16, Folder 13

His Parisian Wife 1918

Box 16, Folder 14

His Wedding Night 1917

Box 16, Folder 15

Hold 'Em Jail, Holiday Affair, Hong Kong, The Hope Chest 1917-1951

Box 16, Folder 16

The Human Comedy, Hungry Hearts 1922-1943

Box 16, Folder 17

The Hunchback of Notre Dame 1923

Box 17, Folder 1

I Am a Camera, I Cover the Waterfront, I'll Fix It, I'll See You in My Dreams 1933-1955

Box 17, Folder 2

I'm From Missouri, In a Lonely Place, Inner Sanctum 1939-1950

Box 17, Folder 3

The Infamous Miss Revell 1921

Box 17, Folder 4

An Innocent Adventuress 1919

Box 17, Folder 5

It Pays to Advertise, It Pays to Be Ignorant, It's a Great Life, The Ivory Handled Guns 1931-1953

Box 17, Folder 6

Jane Goes A-Wooing 1918

Box 17, Folder 7

Jealous Husbands 1923

Box 17, Folder 8

Jeopardy, Jesse James circa 1940-1953

Box 17, Folder 9

The Jones Family at the County Fair, and Off to the Races circa 1939

Box 17, Folder 10

Johnny Get Your Gun 1919

Box 17, Folder 11

Johnny Get Your Hair Cut 1927

Box 17, Folder 12

The Journey's End, Jules of the Strong Heart, Just For a Kid 1916-1929

Box 17, Folder 13

King of Kings, King of the Turf 1927-1938

Box 17, Folder 14

Kiss of Fire 1955

Box 17, Folder 15

Kitty Kelly M.D. 1919

Box 17, Folder 16

The Knickerbocker Buckaroo 1919

Box 18, Folder 1

The Lady Says No, The Last Card, The Last Bandit 1929-1951

Box 18, Folder 2

The Law of the North 1918

Box 18, Folder 3

Let Her Go Gallagher, Let's Make It Legal, Let's Sing Again 1928-1951

Box 18, Folder 4

The Light Touch, Lilly Turner, Listen Darling 1933-1951

Box 18, Folder 5

The Little Comrade 1919

Box 18, Folder 6

Little Johnnie Russell, Little Lord Fauntleroy, Little Miss Nobody 1936-1938

Box 18, Folder 7

Little Orphan Annie 1938

Box 18, Folder 8

Lone Hand, Lost and Found 1923-1951

Box 18, Folder 9

Love Honor and Oh Baby, The Love Egg, Love Is an Awful Thing, Love Is Better Than Ever 1921-1952

Box 18, Folder 10

Love Is a Many Splendored Thing 1955

Box 18, Folder 11

The Lover of Camille, Lover's Lane 1924

Box 18, Folder 12

Love's Conquest 1918

Box 18, Folder 13

Maggie Pepper 1919

Box 18, Folder 14

Magic Fire 1956

Box 18, Folder 15

The Make-Believe Wife, Make a Wish, The Making of Maddelena, Mama Loves Papa 1916-1937

Box 18, Folder 16

Man Bait, Man of the Forest, Manhattan Melodrama, Marriage Playground, Martin Eden 1914-1952

Box 18, Folder 17

Maytime 1937

Box 18, Folder 18

The McConnell Story 1955

Box 19, Folder 1

Men of the Fighting Lady, Men with Wings, Men Women and Money, Merton of the Movies 1919-1954

Scope and Contents

Men Women and Money - includes Zasu Pitts
Box 19, Folder 2

Michael O'Halloran 1948

Scope and Contents

Includes article on Gene-Stratton Porter
Box 19, Folder 3

Midnight Club, Mile-A-Minute Kendall, Miraculous Journey, Miss Fane's Baby Is Stolen, Missing 1917-1948

Box 19, Folder 4

The Moth and the Flame, My Dog Shep, The Mysterious Stranger 1915-1946

Box 19, Folder 5

The Mystery of the Riviera 1916-1917

Box 19, Folder 6

Nancy Goes to Rio, The Naughty Nineties, Newsboys' Home, A Nick-of-Time Hero, No. 99 1921-1950

Box 19, Folder 7

The Narrow Trail 1917

Box 19, Folder 8

Off the Record, The Old Nest, An Old Sweetheart of Mine, On Borrowed Time, One Glorious Day 1922-1939

Box 19, Folder 9

One Third of a Nation, O'Shaughnessy's Boy, Outlaw Country, Out of the Shadow, Outposts in Malaya 1918-1952

Box 19, Folder 10

Our Gang Comedies - Bring Home the Turkey, The First Roundup, Helping Grandma, High Society, Our Gang Follies of 1938, unidentified 1927-1938

Box 19, Folder 11

Paddy O'Day, Pagan Love Song, Painted People, Pandora and the Flying Dutchman, Pardon My French, Park Row, Part Time Wife, Passers By 1920-1952

Box 19, Folder 12

Peck's Bad Boy, Peggy Does Her Darndest, Penny Reward, Pepper, Penrod and Sam, Perils of Our Girl Reporters 1916-1936

Box 20, Folder 1

Piccadilly Jim, Pioneer Trails, Pirates of Monterey, Polo Joe, Poor Boob, A Poor Relation 1919-1947

Box 20, Folder 2

The Primal Law, The Primrose Ring, The Prince Chap, The Prisoner of Shark Island, The Private Lives of Elizabeth and Essex, Professional Soldier 1917-1939

Box 20, Folder 3

Puppy Love, Queen for a Day, Queen of Sheba, Quicksands 1919-1951

Box 20, Folder 4

Rainbow on the River, Ramrod, The Real Glory, The Red Lane, The Redeeming Sin; Reet, Petite, and Gone; Remembrance, Renegades, Reunion 1920-1947

Box 20, Folder 5

Rich Man's Folly; Ride, Ryder, Ride; The Roaring Road, Rogue River; Roll, Thunder, Roll; Romance in the Rain, Room for One More 1919-1951

Box 20, Folder 6

The Rose Tattoo, Roseanna McCoy, The Rough House 1917-1955

Box 21, Folder 1

Sailor Beware, Salvage, Salvation Hunters, Sand, Santa Fe Trail, Savage Drums, The Savage Horde 1921-1952

Box 21, Folder 2

Scaramouche, Scattergood Pulls the Strings, Scuttlers, Sea Hawk, Secret Life of Walter Mitty, Secret Service, Selfish Yates 1918-1947

Box 21, Folder 3

Shark Monroe, Sharpshooters, The Sheriff's Son, The Shriek of Araby 1918-1938

Box 21, Folder 4

The Sign of the Cross, Sing Baby Sing, Sins of Man, Sitting Pretty, Skippy, Skirts Ahoy, Small Town Girl, Snow White 1918-1953

Box 21, Folder 5

So Goes My Love, A Society Exile, Something To Do, Son of Billy the Kid, Son of the Legion, Song and Dance Man, The Source 1919-1949

Box 21, Folder 6

Square Shoulders, Star Maker, Star for a Night, Star Witness, Stolen Glory, Story of Dr. Wassell, Straight Is the Way, Streets of New York, String Beans, The Strip 1918-1951

Box 21, Folder 7

Such a Little Pirate, Suds of Love, Sun In the Morning, Sunday Dinner for a Soldier, Sunrise, Sunshine Trail, Supply and Demand, The Swamp, Swell Guy 1917-1949

Box 22, Folder 1

Tangled Threads, Tarzan Escapes / Tarzan Finds a Son, Texas Carnival, That's My Boy, This Day and Age, Thoroughbreds Don't Cry, Three Kids and a Queen, Three Men and a Girl 1918-1951

Box 22, Folder 2

The Tiger Man, Tim Tyler's Luck, To the Last Man, Tom Sawyer / Tom Sawyer Detective, Tomorrow is Too Late, Tomorrow's Youth 1918-1950

Box 22, Folder 3

Too Young To Kiss, The Tourist, Treasure Island, Tropic Madness, Trouble Brewing, A Turn in the Road, The Two Brides 1919-1951

Box 22, Folder 4

The Unholy Three, Valiant Is the Word for Carrie, Virginia City 1930-1950

Box 22, Folder 5

Wagon Tracks, Wanted - A Story, Warpath, The Way to Love, We Went to College 1919-1951

Box 22, Folder 6

When Romance Rides, Where Are My Children, White Hunter, White Sister, Who's the Boss, The Winning Ticket, A Woman of Impulse 1916-1936

Box 22, Folder 7

Yankee Clipper, The Yearling, The Years Are So Long; Yes Sir, That's My Baby, You're Fired 1919-1949

Box 23, Folder 1

Across the Dead Line, All Wet, All Wrong, Any Wife, Bigger Than Life, Brownie's Baby Doll, Bath Day, The Cave Girl, Cheated Hearts, Chums, The Conquering Power, David Copperfield, Desert Blossoms, Desperate Youth, Don't Get Fresh, the Dumb Bell, A Fool There Was, The Fox 1921-1956

Box 23, Folder 2

Get Rich Quick Peggy, The Jockey, Jules of the River, The Killer, Kindred of the Dust, The Leather Pushers, Little Miss Mischief, Little Napoleon, The Little Rascal, Live Wires, The Lotus Eater, Love Honor and Behave 1920-1922

Box 23, Folder 3

Ma and Pa, Mama's Cowpuncher, The Millionaire, Monte Cristo, The New Teacher, Nobody's Fool, One Clear Call, One of the Finest 1919-1922

Box 24, Folder 1

The Penalty, Penrod, Pets by Proxy, The Pot Roast, The Primal Law, Red Hot Rivals, Rich Girl Poor Girl, The Rosary 1920-1922

Box 24, Folder 2

Salvation Nell, Say It With Flowers, The Scrapper, Sic 'Em Brownie, Six Feet Four, Solid Ivory, Some Class, The Straphanger, Stealin' Home, Sure Fire! 1919-1922

Box 24, Folder 3

Table Steaks, Teddy's Goat, Through the Back Door, The Trap, Trying To Get Along, Turn To the Right, Twins of Suffering Creek, The Way of a Maid, Wives and Other Wives, Wood Simps, You and Me 1919-1922

Box 24, Folder 4

Unidentified films circa 1920-1922


Correspondence circa 1916-1959

Scope and Contents

This series contains a small amount of incoming mail to Preston Sawyer from illustrators, actors, and film studios. Correspondence includes announcements and production news, holiday and greeting cards from Charles Coburn and Sophie Tucker.
Box 25, Folder 1

Correspondence - actors circa 1942-1959

Box 25, Folder 2

Correspondence - studios circa 1916-1940


Ephemera and Realia circa 1915-1959

Scope and Contents

This series contains advertising, brochures, clippings, playbills, production notes, schedules, a synopsis, and a scrapbook. There are also five autograph books containing the signatures of actors, illustrators (with sketches), performers, sports figures, pilots and navigators. Of note are: Amelia Earhart, Zasu Pitts, Red Skelton, Van Johnson, and a stamp for the First Cable Spinning of the Golden Gate Bridge (November 11, 1935).
Box 25, Folder 3

Local Santa Cruz film and theater - includes brochures, schedules, tickets circa 1915-1950

Box 25, Folder 4

Film - brochures, film star trading cards, newsletters, tickets circa 1918-1929

Box 25, Folder 5

Film - brochures, newsletters, synopsis of Neptune's Daughter, tickets circa 1930-1959

Box 25, Folder 6

Theater - brochures, newsletters, programs, tickets circa 1917-1953

Box 25, Folder 7

Theater - playbills, programs circa 1940-1959

Box 25, Folder 8

Autograph copies, tickets circa 1920-1947

Box 26

Autograph books circa 1920-1940

Box 27

Scrapbook - clippings from motion picture magazines circa 1918-1929