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Masque and Gown (Student Theatrical Organization): records, files, and memorabilia

 Record Group
Identifier: A04.48

  • Staff Only
  • Please use the Collection Organization section below to place requests.

Scope and Content

This collection contains early records, including constitution, by-laws, financial accounts and minutes, of the Bowdoin Dramatic Club and Masque and Gown. Included are technical and production scripts, such as "Decoration Day" by Louis O. Coxe, "Freedom's Journeyman" by Amy Merrill Ansara and Robert C. Johnson, Jr. '71 and the 1975 and 1993 productions of "The Only Rose" (based on a short story by Sarah Orne Jewett by Creighton Lindsay '75 and David Larsson '76. Never-produced scripts by students in playwriting courses of the Department of Theater are represented. Programs of productions chronicle seasons dedicated to Bette Davis and Gary Merrill '37, Kenneth Charles Morton Sills '01, Eugene O'Neill, and George and Polly Quinby. The collection includes scrapbooks containing photographs, reviews, and newspaper clippings, posters, designs for scenery and lighting, 35 mm slides and 8 mm film. Also included are 8 mm and VHS videocassettes of complete productions, such as "Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat" (1993) "Anything Goes" (1992), and the student-written musicals "Orphea" and "Corny-Copia" (1991).


  • Creation: 1903-1994, 2011-


Access Restrictions

No restrictions.

Biographical/Historical Note

The Masque and Gown was organized as the Bowdoin Dramatic Club in the fall of 1903. The first play produced was "She Stoops to Conquer" on February 18, 1904 in the theater of the Brunswick Town Hall. Through the years membership was alternatively elective or gained by virtue of having contributed to a prior production, with directorial responsibilities filled during the years prior to 1935 by local volunteers and faculty. In 1935, George H. Quinby '23 became Director of Dramatics (a post he held until 1966) and was followed in 1971 by A. Raymond Rutan '51 (retired, 1994). Although a student-run organization, the executive committee of the Masque and Gown has always collaborated with the director of theater and technical directors to determine the program for the season and to schedule production work. Several major and minor productions, including musicals, have been presented each year. Since 1934, the annual student-written one act playwriting contest has awarded cash prizes now underwritten by Hunter S. Frost '47.


25 Linear Feet

Language of Materials


Guide to the Masque and Gown Records and Publications
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Script of description
Language of description note

Repository Details

Part of the George J. Mitchell Department of Special Collections & Archives, Bowdoin College Library, Brunswick, Maine 04011 Repository

3000 College Station
Brunswick Maine 04011 USA
(207) 725-3288