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Title: Ed Jackson “Book of Radio Personalities” Scrapbook

Collection Dates: 1933-1941

Extent and Forms of Material: 1 cubic foot, (1 box)

Creator: H. Edwin Jackson

Abstract: H. Edwin Jackson (1907-1989) created this scrapbook of radio stars while living in Chicago, Illinois during the Great Depression.

Repository: Archives Center, National Museum of American History, Smithsonian Institution, Washington, 202-533-3270

Collection Number: AC0861

Processing Note: Processed by Franklin A. Robinson, Jr., archivist, August 2004; supervised by Vanessa Broussard Simmons, archivist. Finding aid revised September 2009.


Conditions Governing Access: The collection is open for research use.

Conditions Governing Reproduction and Use: Collection items available for reproduction, but the Archives Center makes no guarantees concerning copyright restrictions. Reproduction permission from Archives Center: fees for commercial use.

Preferred Citation: Title and date of item, Ed Jackson “Book of Radio Personalities” Scrapbook, 1933-1941, Archives Center, National Museum of American History, Smithsonian Institution, box number 1, page number XX, digital file number XXXXXXXX


Administrative/Biographical History: H. Edwin Jackson (1907-1989) was born in Union City, Indiana, the youngest of three children. Jackson’s interest in entertainment personalities began early. His father was engaged in real estate and through a land swap acquired The Star Theater in Union City, one of the town’s three theaters. The Star was a mid-size theater with a screen and stage. The Jacksons ran The Star as a family business. Jackson was the assistant projectionist to his older sister Mary Elizabeth and he and his father were the janitors. The Star showed silent movies starring such personalities as William S. Hart, Douglas Fairbanks, Sr., Charlie Chaplin, and Wallace Reid. During the influenza epidemic of the teens the theater closed. The family eventually sold The Star, and Jackson went to work as an assistant projectionist at The Grand, Union City’s largest and most modern movie house.

When Jackson graduated from high school, the family moved to Chicago, Illinois. The Jackson family’s first radio was “The Freshman” and the family eventually owned an Atwater Kent. Jackson became an avid radio fan listening to local Chicago stations WKYW, WENR, and WBBM as well as the national radio networks. Some of Jackson’s favorite shows were The Shadow, Amos n’ Andy and the Lux Radio Theater. Jackson was laid off from his job in 1933 and spent a great deal of his time listening to radio. His mother gave him money to purchase materials to make a scrapbook of radio and entertainment personalities. He began his book in January 1933, entitling it “Ed Jackson’s Book of Radio Personalities.” Jackson wrote to many of the personalities he featured in his scrapbook asking for autographed photographs which he put into the book along with clipped photographs and other items of interest from magazines and newspapers, radio show ticket stubs, and programs. Jackson included comics, singers, commentators (both news and social), and stars of popular radio programs. He revised/repaired the book in January, 1982 but Jackson did not detail his revisions.

Jackson was employed by the Lindberg Steel Treating Co. in Melrose Park, Illinois, for thirty years.  He married Louise LaJeunesse in 1935 and had two children.  Louise died in 1947, and Jackson married Eugenia McDougald in 1951.  At the time of his death in December 1989 he was living in Walden, New York.

Sources: Oral History by H. Edwin Jackson, Archives Center Control File.
Memorial Obituary for Edwin Jackson, The Newburgh News, December 14, 1989.
Bello, Paul. “Local scrapbook to be displayed at the Smithsonian”. Times Community Papers, May 17, 2006. Email message from Annette Smith to Cathy Keen, June 2, 2009.

Scope and Content: One homemade scrapbook measuring 15” x 33” created and complied by H. Edwin Jackson. The book contains photographs, some autographed, news clippings and commercially printed photographs of numerous radio and entertainment personalities from 1933 forward. The arrangement of the book and its artwork was the creation of Jackson. Many of the pages have photographs and/or news items of additional personalities associated with the featured personality on that page. Personalities are listed in the order in which they appear in the book.

System of Arrangement: The collection is organized into one series.

Series 1, Ed Jackson “Book of Radio Personalities” Scrapbook, 1933-1941

Acquisition Information: Donated to the National Museum of American History, Archives Center by Annette L. Smith (H. Edwin Jackson’s daughter) in June, 2004.

Related Archival Materials:
#55 George H. Clark Collection Radioana Collection, 1880-1950
#60 Warshaw Collection of Business Americana: Radio, Motion Pictures, 1896-1963
# 217 National Bureau of Standards Radio Collection, 1917-1933
#674 Jean Clairmook Radio Scrapbook, 1930-1932

Access Points:

Jackson, H. Edwin
Allen, Gracie
Ameche, Don
Astaire, Fred
Benny, Jack 1894-1974
Bergen, Edgar
Brice, Fanny
Burns, George 1896-1996
Cantor, Eddie, 1892-1964
Crosby, Bing, 1904-1977
Durante, Jimmy
Durbin, Deanna
Eddy, Nelson, 1901-1967
Froman, Jane, 1907-1980
Jolson, Al, 1886-1950
Lillie, Beatrice
Livingston, Mary
Meredith, Burgess, 1907-1997
Nelson, Ozzie
Oakie, Jack, 1903-1978
Skinner, Cornelia Otis, 1899-1979
Vallee, Rudy, 1901-1986
Whiteman, Paul, 1890-1967
Woolcott, Alexander, 1887-1943
Wynn, Ed, 1886-1966
Mills Brothers

Radio programs
Radio comedies
Radio -- 1930-1940
Celebrities – 1930-1940
Motion picture

Photographs -- 1930-1950 -- Photoprints
Silver gelatin
Scrapbooks -- 20 th century
Publicity photographs
Signatures (names)
Clippings -- 1930-1950





Series 1, H. Edwin Jackson's Radio Stars Scrapbook, 1933-1941


(in order of appearance): The Mills Brothers, Ruth Etting, Fred Allen with Portland Hoffa and Jack Smart, Lanny Ross, Phil Baker, Ireene Wicker, The Pickens Sisters, Raymond Knight, Clara (Louise Starkey), Lu (Isobel Carothers) n’ Em (Helen King), Phil Harris and Leah Ray, Vera Van, Burns (George Burns) and Allen (Gracie Allen), Gladys Swarthout, Jeanie Lang, Myrt and Marge, Helen Jepson, Jack Benny and Mary Livingston, Deanna Durbin, Helen Morgan, “Schnozzle” Durante (Jimmy Durante), Alexander Woolcott, The Boswell Sisters, Edwin C. Hill, Cornelia Otis Skinner, Paul Whiteman, Jessica Dragonette, Dave Rubinoff, Little Jackie Heller, Joe Penner, Mildred Bailey, Olga Albani, Vivienne Segal, Ed Wynn, Beatrice Lillie, Burgess Meredith, Dorothy Page, Bing Crosby, Rosa Ponselle, Stoopnagle and Budd, Grace Moore, Frank Crumit and Julia Sanderson, Frances Langford, Conrad Thibault, Ozzie Nelson and Harriet Hilliard, Bobby Breen, Jack Pearl, The Big Show, Olsen (Ole Olsen) and Johnson (Chick Johnson), Ramona, Rudy Vallee, The Easy Aces, Annette Hanshaw, Ben Bernie, Alice Faye, Charles Winninger, Ray Perkins, Eddie Cantor, Irene Rich, The Weiner Minstrels, Frank Parker, Jane Froman, Walter O’Keefe, James Melton, Al Jolsen, Donald Novis, Morton Downey, The First Nighter (Charles P. Hughes), Lawrence Tibbett, Fred Astaire, Abe Lyman, Ethel Shutta, Fanny Brice, Joe Cook, Ken Murray, Jack Oakie, Tony Wans, Waring’s Pennsylvanians, Bob Burns, Don Ameche, Nelson Eddy, Ted Bergman, Edgar Bergen and Charlie McCarthy.

Revised: October 15, 2009