Special Collections and Archives

Robert Youngson papers

Special Collections and Archives

Robert Youngson papers

Robert Youngson papers, 1932-1992

Finding Aid

Prepared by Christine Borne, September 18, 2001
3 document cases and 2 oversize boxes, 3.25 cubic feet, 11th floor


Biographical Note

Robert Youngson (1917-1974) was best known as a producer of short subject and comedy compilation films. Born in Brooklyn, New York, he attended Harvard Business School where he was a prize-winning member of the Harvard Film Society. After graduating in 1941, Youngson began working as a newsreel contact man and then as a scriptwriter for RKO-Pathe (later Warner-Pathe). In the 1950's, he produced several short subject films compiled from the Warner Pathe newsreel collection. Two of these films, The World of Kids (1951), and This Mechanical Age (1954), won Academy Awards. Mr. Youngson's comedy compilations include Fifty Years Before Your Eyes (1950), The Golden Age of Comedy (1957), Noah's Ark (1958), When Comedy Was King (1960), Days of Thrills and Laughter (1961), 30 Years of Fun (1963), MGM's Big Parade of Comedy (1964), Laurel and Hardy's Laughing 20's (1965), The Further Perils of Laurel and Hardy (1968), and Four Clowns (1970).


Scope and Content

This collection contains the personal papers of Robert Youngson. The majority of the collection dates from the 1950s and 1960s. Of particular note are the signed photographs of Jean Harlow and Lotte Lehmann, a reproduction of a letter from Stan Laurel to Richard Sloan, and three original cartoon cells: one by Japanese animator Yoji Kuri, and two from Zagreb Film in Yugoslavia. Also included in the collection are 7 volumes of Warner Pathe's News Magazine of the Screen Synopsis of Contents and Classroom Guide. The News Magazine of the Screen was a free-of-charge educational film series offered to teachers around the United States in the 1950's. Youngson was editor of the Classroom Guide. There are also a number of oversized promotional movie posters in the collection, located in Boxes 3 and 4, as well as an award bestowed upon Youngson.

Acquisition Information

This collection was donated to Kent State University in 1982 by Robert Youngson's widow Dr. Jeanne Keyes Youngson.


Box 1
Folder -- Contents

  1. Artwork -- Original Cartoon Cells, undated
  2. Biographical Information -- Robert Youngson
  3. Correspondence -- from Isadora Bennett to Youngson, 1951
  4. Correspondence -- from Barry Gottlieb to Youngson, 1968
  5. Correspondence -- from Stan Laurel to Richard Sloan, 1964
  6. Correspondence -- from Ernie Parmentier/Filmfacts Magazine to Youngson, 1969-79
  7. Interviews -- Youngson, Film Fan Monthly, 1969
  8. Manuscripts -- The Further Perils of Laurel & Hardy, 1967
  9. Newspaper Clippings -- Laurel & Hardy's Laughing 20's, 1992
  10. Newspaper Clippings --News Magazine of the Screen, 1951-53
  11. Newspaper Clippings -- TV listings -- Youngson films, 1972; 1985
  12. Pamphlets -- Pathe Celebrated Film Shorts, circa 1950s
  13. Papers -- Financial Statements and Receipts, 1959; 1971
  14. Papers -- The Museum of Modern Art Department of Film, 1940-1970
  15. Papers -- Notes, miscellaneous, various dates
  16. Papers -- Warner Pathe News Magazine of the Screen, miscellaneous, 1950s
  17. Photographs -- Jean Harlow (inscribed), circa1933

17a. Photographs -- Laurel and Hardy (inscribed), 1932

  1. Photographs -- Lotte Lehman (inscribed), 1951
  2. Photographs -- Youngson [with wife Jeanne?], circa 1950
  3. Promotional Materials -- Movie Flyers, undated
  4. Promotional Materials -- Warner Pathe News Magazine of the Screen, 1950s
  5. Publications -- Film rental catalogs, 1940s
  6. Publications -- Film reviews, 1956-71
  7. Publications -- Warner Pathe News Magazine of the Screen Synopsis of Contents & Classroom Guide, v.1-2, 1950s
  8. Publications -- Warner Pathe News Magazine of the Screen Synopsis of Contents & Classroon Guide, v.3-4, 1950s
  9. Publications -- Warner Pathe News Magazine of the Screen Synopsis of Contents & Classroom Guide, v.5-v.7 no.9, 1950s
  10. Publications -- Warner Pathe News Magazine of the Screen Teachers' manuals, 1950s

Box 2
Folder -- Contents

  1. Publications, directories -- Harvard Business School Alumni, 1969
  2. Publications, directories -- Harvard Club of New York City, 1956
  3. Publications, directories -- Harvard Club of New York City, 1959
  4. Publications, directories -- Harvard Club of New York City, 1962
  5. Publications, yearbooks -- Harvard Business School, 1939-40
  6. Publications, yearbooks -- Harvard Business School, 1940-41
  7. Publications, yearbooks -- Newspaper Guild of New York, 1961

Box 3
Folder -- Contents

  1. Autographed Photo of Walt Disney
  2. L'allegro Mondo di Stanlio e Ollio, circa 1960s
  3. L'allegro Mondo di Stanlio e Ollio (this item differs from the poster above), circa 1960s
  4. The Golden Age of Comedy, framed article from Life, 1958
  5. The Big Parade of Comedy, 1964
  6. Thirty Years of Fun, 1963
  7. Tennessee Williams, photo from After Dark, 1971
  8. This Mechanical Age, 1954
  9. Days of Thrills and Laughter, 1961

Box 4
Folder -- Contents

  1. Thirty Years of Fun, 1963
  2. Thirty Years of Fun (larger size), 1963
  3. When Comedy Was King, 1960
  4. The Further Perils of Laurel & Hardy, 1967
  5. The Further Perils of Laurel & Hardy (larger size), 1967
  6. The Big Parade of Comedy, 1964

Box 5
Folder -- Contents

  1. Artifact -- Page One Award in Movies, given to Youngson by the Newspaper Guild of New York, 1961