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19th Century Theatre History: #3 Finding Articles/Databases

Use this guide to find Bibliographies,Indexes, Books, Articles, Newspapers etc. pertaining to the topic 19th century theatre

19th Century Fireman

"Always Ready," 1858, by Louis Maurer (1832-1932), from the Currier & Ives "American Fireman" series of hand-colored lithographs

"American Fireman"

Finding Articles via EBSCO Discovery Service

The latest from: Nineteenth Century Theatre & Film


This journal considers narrative or variety entertainments from all countries and regions. Its scope embraces not only drama but dance, opera, music hall, circus, fairground entertainment, and other forms which implicate live audiences (actual, potential, or imaginary).


British Periodicals

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Electronic Resources

Electronic Resources

Use the following databases to locate articles on Theatre in the 19th century. Available from the Bobst Library database page at



  • American Periodical Series, 1741-1900
    Also available in microform. Call No: Film 277
    American periodicals on diverse subjects, 1741-1900+.
  • Early American Periodicals Index to 1850
    Call No: MP3
    Indexes covering about 340 American magazines published through 1850. ound at the Microform Center on LL2
  • Early British Periodicals
    Call No: Film 599
    British periodicals on varied subjects from 1681-1921
    Access: A Guide to the Early British Periodicals Collection on Microfilm is available at the first floor Reference Desk (Call No: Z6956.G6 U54). A title list can be found at the Microform Center on LL2. Individual titles are in Bobcat.
  • Nineteenth Century Theatre (former title: Nineteenth Century Theatre Research)
    Bobst PN1851.N55 Current holdings in Periodicals Room (third floor, east wing)
    Nineteenth Century Theatre regularly publishes essays, documents, bibliographies, review essays, reviews and an annotated list of books received on the theatre of the 1800's. A wide scope allows the journal to present topics in European and American theatre, dance, opera, and other performing arts. The editors emphasize the publication and use of primary source material. Recent articles have included a demographic study of Victorian Theatre employees: a description of James Steele MacKaye's lighting designs for the 1893 Columbian Exposition: and excerpts from a diary kept by the manager of a Japanese acrobat troupe that toured the United States in 1867. Book reviews complete each issue. Indexed in American History and Life, Historical Abstracts, AHCI, MLA.
  • Theatre History Studies
    Bobst PN2000.T49 Current holdings in Periodicals Room (third floor, east wing)
    The official journal of the Mid-American Theatre Conference, Theatre History Studies covers all aspects of theatre. The well-illustrated volume contains essays, and book reviews. The journal attracts important names in theatre history and although it appears only once a year, provides interesting, well-researched history. Indexed in American History and Life, Historical Abstracts, AHCI, MLA.


Microform Sets

To find periodicals in the Microform Center check Bobcat first. Periodicals in the Microform Center are generally listed in Bobcat and filed alphabetically by title, either as microfilm, microfiche or microcard. For a complete listing of all microform sets available see the binder at the first floor reference desk marked LL2 Periodicals, Newspapers, Scripts, Microforms. The following list is of microform sets that may be of interest for researchers of both American and British plays.

  • Drama on the World Stage: Prompt Books and Performance Records
    Call No: Film 2614
    Prompt books for non-Shakespearean plays, from the Folger Shakespeare Library. Items date from the seventeenth to the early twentieth century. Plays are mainly British, with some exceptions, notably work of Ibsen. Around 800 in all.
    Access: Publisher's guide: Drama on the World Stage. PN2570.D7 1989, in the first floor Reference Room.
  • English and American Drama of the Nineteenth Century
    Call No: MP7 (microprint) and MF326 (microfiche)
    Varied dramatic works from nineteenth century England and America, including plays, opera libretti, etc. American and British productions of works from other countries and of pre-1800 plays are included.
    Access: Nineteenth-Century American Drama: a finding guide, in the first floor Reference Room at Ref1 PS632.H57 & English Drama of the Nineteenth Century: an index and finding guide, at Z2014.D7 E42 1985 on the 10th floor.
  • Popular Stage: Drama in the Nineteenth Century England
    Call No:Film 2615
    A collection formed by the actor Frank Pettingell. Series One covers 1000 manuscripts by the most popular dramatists of the Victorian era. Series Two covers 300 pantomime libretti, reflecting the tremendous popularity of the form and Series Three covers the collection of printed plays over 5000 in all. On reel one there is a complete listing which gives an alphabetical index of authors and details of the plays.
    Access: The Popular Stage guides to all three series can be found in the first floor reference area at Ref1 PN2594.P6.
  • Three Centuries of English and American Plays
    Call No: MP13 (microprint)
    Comprehensive collection of English plays, published 1515-1800, and American plays, published 1714-1830. Includes translations of foreign plays and multiple editions of many titles. Around 5600 plays in all.
    Access: Three Centuries of English and American Plays: a checklist. Z2014.D7 B45, in the first floor Reference Room and the Microform Center.
    *Collection divided into segments: American 1714-1830; British 1515-1641, 1642-1700, 1701-1750, 1751-1800. Plays arranged by author or title for anonymous works.