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Mason Adams papers
PASC 215  
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Collection Details
Table of contents What's This?
  • Conditions Governing Access
  • Conditions Governing Reproduction and Use
  • Physical Characteristics and Technical Requirements
  • Preferred Citation
  • UCLA Catalog Record ID
  • Provenance/Source of Acquisition
  • Processing Information
  • Biography
  • Scope and Content
  • Organization and Arrangement

  • Title: Mason Adams papers
    Collection number: PASC 215
    Contributing Institution: UCLA Library Special Collections
    Language of Material: English
    Physical Description: 7.8 linear feet (11.5 boxes, 3 cartons, 1 LP box)
    Date (bulk): Bulk, 1977-1993
    Date (inclusive): 1937-2006
    Abstract: Mason Adams was an actor whose career spanned film, radio, television, and theater. The collection consists of scripts related to Adams' acting career, video and audio tapes, and a small amount of personal material.
    Language of Materials: Materials are in English.
    Physical Location: Stored off-site at SRLF. Advance notice is required for access to the collection. Please contact the UCLA Library Special Collections Reference Desk for paging information.
    Creator: Adams, Mason

    Conditions Governing Access

    COLLECTION STORED OFF-SITE AT SRLF: Open for research. Advance notice required for access. Contact the UCLA Library Special Collections Reference Desk for paging information.

    Conditions Governing Reproduction and Use

    Property rights to the physical object belong to the UCLA Library 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.

    Physical Characteristics and Technical Requirements

    COLLECTION CONTAINS AUDIOVISUAL MATERIALS: Audiovisual materials in this collection will require assessment and possible digitization for safe access. All requests to access special collections material must be made in advance using the request button located on this page.

    Preferred Citation

    [Identification of item], Mason Adams Papers (Collection PASC 215). UCLA Library Special Collections, Charles E. Young Research Library, University of California, Los Angeles.

    UCLA Catalog Record ID

    UCLA Catalog Record ID: 4435863 

    Provenance/Source of Acquisition

    Gift of Mason Adams, 2000.

    Processing Information

    The collection was reprocessed in 2016 in order to describe the bulk of the non-script material.


    Mason Adams was born Mason Abrams in Brooklyn on February 26, 1919. He received his master's degree from the University of Wisconsin in the early 1940s before returning to New York, where he taught speech for several years at the Neighborhood Playhouse on East 54th Street. It was in the 1940s that he also started his acting career.
    He appeared on many major radio programs including Inner Sanctum, Theatre Guild of the Air, and Superman, and he played the title role of Pepper Young in Pepper Young's Family. He has numerous stage credits spanning from his Broadway debut as Joe Rigga in Get Away Old Man (1943) to his last play, The Man Who Had All the Luck (2002). Among his film credits are 9 to 5 (1980), F/X (1986), and Son-In-Law (1993).
    He also lent his voice to documentaries and commercials. His distinctive voice became synonymous with the J.M. Smucker Company, which featured him in its commercials for more than 30 years. Adams died on April 28, 2005, in New York City.

    Scope and Content

    The collection consists largely of film, television, and stage scripts related to the career of actor Mason Adams. However, most of the scripts are for projects that never reached fruition, or that Adams did not appear in. There is only a single script for Adams' Emmy-nominated role on Lou Grant (CBS, 1977-1982), but the entire run of the short-lived sitcom Knight & Daye (NBC, 1989) is present. There is a significant amount of audiovisual material, representing demo reels and appearances by Adams in different media. There is also a small amount of other material, such as clippings, contracts, photographs, and publicity material. Of particular interest might be the detailed notes Adams kept for an acting class he took in 1937.

    Organization and Arrangement

    Arranged in the following series:
    • Series 1. Motion Picture Projects
    • Series 2. Television and Radio Projects
    • Series 3. Theater Projects
    • Series 4. General Files
    • Series 5. Audiovisual Materials
    Folders are in the order determined by the previous archivist.

    Subjects and Indexing Terms

    Adams, Mason--Archives.
    Film scripts.
    Television scripts.