Texas Archival Resources Online


TABLE OF CONTENTS


Collection Summary

Biographical Note

Scope and Contents of the Collection

Arrangement of the Collection

Restrictions

Administrative Information

Description of Series

Series 1: Costumes Designs and Poetry

Series 2: Sketches and Poetry

Series 3: Scrapbooks

Texas Woman's University, the Woman's Collection

Laura Lee Bird Collection

An Inventory to the Collection



Collection Summary

Creator: Bird, Laura Lee 1908 -1980
Title: Laura Lee Bird Collection
Date: 1932-1953
Abstract: Native Texas poet and costume designer for the New York stage, and graduate of College of Industrial Arts in 1929 and 1931 (later Texas Woman's University) Collection contains around 750 original drawings, illustrations and costume designs. Most of the designs are signed Lauralee, and many have inscribed verse and/or notations naming characters or scenes from plays or musical works. Included are designs for And for "Yale, Night : Being a Ballet-Masque", "Rip Van Winkle", "The Crock of Gold", "The Hour Glass", "Prometheus Unbound", "Salome", "The Tempest", and "The Mikado". Also included are Bird's original poetry, and news clippings from the 1930's containing her verse. Two Japanese prints marked Hiroshige and Shoson complete the collection.
Location: Mss. 6
Size: 1 cubic foot
Repository Texas Woman's University, the Woman's Collection

Biographical Note

Laura Lee Bird, a native Texan poet and costume designer for the New York stage, received her B.S. (1929) and M.A. (1931) from the College of Industrial Arts. While attending CIA, she was active in literary and art organizations and associate editor of the Daedalian Her master's thesis was entitled "Original Designs of Stage sets and Costumes forThe Mikado. Her poetry had been published in Torch Bearer, Blue Moon, Kaleidograph, andPoetry: A Magazine of Verse (1933). Examples of her costume designs appeared in Theater Hits Monthly(1933). At the time of her death in April, 1980, she was the wife of Frederick R. Hammargren of Hollywood, CA.

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Scope and Contents of the Collection

The collection contains around 756 original illustrations and costume designs for plays and musical works. Most of the designs are signed "Lauralee", some are inscribed with poetry, and many have notations naming characters or scenes. Also included are Bird's original poetry, and news clippings from the 1930's containing her verse. Although the bulk of the collection is undated, the documents that are dated are mainly from the 1930's.

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Arrangement of the Collection

Series 1: Costume Designs and Poetry
Series 2: Sketches and Poetry
Series 3: Scrapbooks

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Restrictions

Access to the Collection:

Open for research.

Publication and Copyright Statements:

Permission to publish materials must be obtained in writing from the Coordinator for Special Collections. Where copyright is unclear, all responsibility must be assumed by the user.

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Administrative Information

Provenance

Unknown. Texas Woman’s University apparently accessioned these records in 1981, but provides no hint to the source of this acquisition.

Processed/Encoded by:

Penny Bell 2009

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Detailed Description of the Collection

 

Series 1: Costumes Designs and Poetry

Box Folder
1 1 "And for Yale"
Playbill, n.d. Jitney Players, New York City, costumes designed by Laura Lee Bird.
Sketches of costume designs, some color, some fabric swatches, notations concerning fabric, trim, and accessories, 23 items.
2 "Night: Being a Ballet-Masque"
Typed Play script.
Costume designs, 12 items.
3 "Rip Van Winkle"
Playbill,n.d.,Jitney Players, New York City, costumes designed by Laura Lee Bird.
Costume designs with notations describing accessories, fabric type, and color, and yardage requirements, 17 items.
4 "The Crock of Gold" by James Stephens
Title page design.
Notes concerning design of book.
Illustrations and captions, 25 items.
5 "The Hour Glass" by William Butler Yeats.
Costume designs colored, framed in black construction paper, 33 items.
6 "Prometheus Unbound".
Lists of characters appearing in each act and scene.
Illustrations with captions, 55 items.
7 "Salome" by Wilde-Strauss.
Costume designs inscribed with names of the characters, 5 items.
8 "The Tempest" by William Shakespeare.
Costume designs inscribed with names of the characters, 16 items.
9 "Devotions and Despairs: Irregular Sonnets and Erratic Lyrics by an Unknown Minor Poet" by William Shakespeare.
Typed poems, n.d.
Envelope cover, from Poetry [magazine], addressed to "Former Contributor".
10 Poems
Typed poems, some titles, n.d.,with revisions.
11 Poems, "For H.M."
Typed poems, no titles,with table of contents, 1936-1952.
12 Poems
Typed poems, no titles,n.d.
13 Poems
Typed poems, some titles,n.d., with revisions.
14 Poems
Typed poems, some titles,n.d.
15 News clippings
Poems by Laura Lee Bird
"Nuptial",Dallas Morning News, September 14, 1932
"Release (for Sara Teasdale)", Dallas Morning News, May 21, 1933.
"Evening",Dallas Morning News, August 13 1933.
"Evening", Hartford Times, August 8,1933.
"Orphan", Niagara Falls Gazette, July 31, 1937.
"Youth", Dallas Journal, n.d.

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Series 2: Sketches and Poetry

Box Folder
2 1 "Poems to No One"
Autographed poems, n.d.
2 "Devotions: Poems by an Unknown Poet: To My Own (the One) True Lord"
Autographed poems, n.d.
3 "Devotions"
Autographed poems, n.d.
4 Drawings, 1930's
Sketches, some titled, some with poetry, 30 items.
5 Drawings, 1930's
Sketches, some titled, some with poetry, 49 items.
6 Drawings, 1936-1938
Sketches, some titled, some with poetry, 26 items.
7 Drawings
Sketches, 26 items.
8 Drawings, 1933-1937
Interpretations of characters in musical works, 35 items.
9 Drawings
Sketches, some titled, some with poetry, 39 items.
10 Drawings, 1933-1936
Interpretations of characters in musical works, 25 items.
11 Portrait of Woman
One framed portrait (drawing) of a woman, titled (handwriting unclear), signed.
12 Drawings, ca 1935
Sketches, some titled, 32 items.
13 Miscellaneous
Japanese prints, "Hiroshige" and "Shoson", 2 items.
Drawings on the back of employee time cards for "Laura L.B. Hammargren", May 1943, 5 items.
Drawings, some color, 40 items.
Booklet on"La Scala", ca. 1953.
14 Drawings, 1933-1936
Interpretations of characters in musical works, 43 items.
15 Theatre Arts Monthly
One copy of magazine, July 1933, containing ballet costume designs by Laura Lee Bird on page 510.

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Series 3: Scrapbooks

Box
3 Portfolio
Ten packets containing interpretations of musical works (139 drawings).
Scrapbook
Drawings, 39 items
Scrapbook
Costume designs (including some for "The Mikado"), colored, framed in black construction paper, 27 items.
Scrapbook
Costume designs,colored, on black construction paper, interpretation of musical works, 29 items.
Scrapbook
Interpretations of musical works, 28 items.

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