Booth Room Committee

Stephen M. Archer's Papers

Booth Room Committee

Stephen M. Archer's Papers

August 20, 2004

The book titled, Junius Brutus Booth: Theatrical Prometheus is probably the most scholarly and complete book written about the Booth family. It was written by Dr. Stephen M. Archer, Professor of Theatre at the University of Missouri at Columbia. When we heard that the research materials collected while writing the book were possibly available to the Society, the Booth Room Committee jumped on the opportunity to obtain them.

Dr. Stephen M. Archer and the Boxes of Donated Research Materials

Dr. Stephen M. Archer was Professor of Theatre at the University of Missouri at Columbia until he retired in 1998. He is still associated with the University of Missouri as a professor emeritus. Dr. Archer authored numerous articles about Junius as well as, How Theatre Happens and American Actors and Actresses: A Guide to Information Sources. During his research Dr. Archer observed that no book on Junius had been written since his daughter, Asia Booth Clark wrote The Elder and the Younger Booth that was published by the James R. Osggood and Company in Boston in 1882.

Thereafter, Dr. Archer and his wife, Kelly, spent nine years researching and writing Junius Brutus Booth: Theatrical Prometheus. Dinah Faber wrote in the May 2004 edition of the Society's newsletter that "The Archers agreed that the years spent researching the life and times of Junius Brutus Booth were some of the best years of their lives, and they fondly recall visits to Dorothy and Howard Fox at Tudor Hall in the 1990s."

The book was published by Southern Illinois University Press in 1992. It contains 34 illustrations and is a beautiful book. It is now out of print.

As a member of the Booth Room Committee, the Webmaster drove to Columbia, Missouri to pick up the boxes on March 2, 2004. Some historical sightseeing was done along the way.

Lincoln's Tomb, photographed in March 2004
Lincoln's Home in Springfield, Illinois, photographed in March 2004