Tuesday, January 12, 2016

Another Hidden Treat in the Collections

One of the secret pleasures of working with historical documents is finding a secret treasure hidden inside. (Better than Cracker Jacks.)

To research a question about German comedies, we went through our collection of theater programs, which are mostly from around 1880 to 1920. The building shown above (which had many names in its history, including the Sandusky Theater, Sandusky Opera House, the Himmelein Theater, and The Grand) was the prime venue for performances in Sandusky at that time. The Archives Research Center has a number of programs from that theater. Unfortunately, we didn't find an answer for the question we had, but we found a rather fascinating piece of history hidden in plain sight within a program for a performance of The Prince Chap at the Grand in 1904.

Here is the page listing the cast. Movie buffs -- do you recognize any names?

click on the image for a larger view
The "Earl of Huntington" was played by Cecil DeMille, better known through much of the twentieth century as Cecil B. DeMille, the famous motion picture producer and director, probably best known for The Ten Commandments, among his many movies.

Who knows who else might be hiding in the Sandusky Library's collections!

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