Papers, ca. 18??-1988 (bulk 1920-1983)

Swanson, Gloria


620 boxes, plus art work, audio discs, bound volumes, film, galleys, posters, and realia (292.5 linear feet).
Organized in seven series: Correspondence, 1907-1983, 85 boxes; Career, ca. 1914-1983, 118 boxes; Business Interests, 1921-1982, 76 boxes; Other Interests, 1923-1983, 51 boxes; Biographical/Personal Papers, ca. 18??-1983, 110 boxes; After Death, 1983-1988, 1 box; Formats, 1889-1983, 147 boxes.
The papers of actress Gloria Swanson, 18??-1988, document her career accomplishments, her business ventures and her various interests, as well as her childhood, family, personal relationships, and private life. Included are correspondence, photographs, scripts, production records, financial and legal records, publicity materials, clippings, scrapbooks, published materials, film, audio recordings, music, writing, art work, and artifacts. This collection does not include the majority of Swanson's film holdings, which were acquired by George Eastman House in 1967.
The collection contains extensive records of Swanson's career in motion pictures, encompassing sixty-six films, ca. 1914-1975. Her role as one of the first women to independently produce her own films at United Artists, 1925-1933, is traced by the records of her production companies. Among these films were the controversial Sadie Thompson (1928), and the legendary Erich von Stroheim fiasco Queen Kelly (unreleased), as well as her first "talkie," The Trespasser (1929). Swanson's watershed role of later years, that of Norma Desmond in Billy Wilder's Sunset Boulevard (1950), is also well documented. Also represented is Swanson's involvement in other entertainment branches, which extended to radio, television, and theatre.
Swanson also kept extensive records of her efforts as a businesswoman, which included cosmetics, a fashion line, hosiery, an inventions and patents company, a travel agency, and writing assignments. Additionally, the collection also contains evidence of Swanson's varied personal enthusiasms: art, fashion, health and nutrition, music, psychic phenomena and religion, politics, science and technology, and travel.
Swanson's childhood, family life, and personal life are further documented through such personal papers as address books, appointment books, photographs, and various personal financial, legal, and property records. There is a wide range of correspondence with family, friends, business associates, acquaintances, and fans, spanning many notables from numerous fields of endeavor.
For further information, see individual RLIN records for Series I-VII.
American actress, motion-picture producer, and author.
Limited photocopies can be provided upon receipt of written authorization from the copyright holder.
In English, German, French, Italian, and other languages.
An unpublished finding aid with folder-level control is available in the repository and on the internet Includes an extensive index of correspondents, as well as appendices with various lists of the films of Gloria Swanson.
Mashon, Kenneth Michael. Gloria Swanson at United Artists, 1925-1933. Thesis. University of Texas at Austin, 1989.

Related Resources

An unpublished finding aid with folder-level control is available in the repository and on the internet:
View this description in WorldCat: