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COLLECTION Identifier: MS Thr 2331

Aaron Aarons collection of Bay Area theater ephemera


Left-wing San Francisco Bay Area theater ephemera collected by Aaron Aarons.


  • Creation: circa 1971-2006
  • Creation: Majority of material found in 1971-1981


Condition Description

In good condition overall, with some decay of newsprint items.

Conditions Governing Access

There are no restrictions on physical access to this material. Collection is open for research.


1 linear feet (1 box)

A collection of files partly comprised of material mailed to Aaron Aarons (usually addressed to "R. M. Aaron" or "R. Aarons") and partly of items collected in person at performances. File contents include programs, fliers, academic course materials, performance calendars, periodicals, and other theater ephemera chiefly for Bay Area companies but with smaller quantities from Los Angeles and New York (N.Y.), as well as one file of film-related ephemera.

Biographical / Historical

Aaron R. Aarons was a self-described "left-wing globalist subversive since 1956" (from his Facebook page); born in New York (N.Y.) in 1940, he died 19 January 2024 in Berkeley (Calif.) where he had lived in senior housing since 2018. He had a pirate radio show on Free Radio Berkeley, was "a perennial member of the Berkeley radical direct action scene", a member of Campaign Against Apartheid, "communist candidate for [Berkeley] City Council", and activist concerned with various social and political issues. In the year prior to his death he was active on social media about the Palestinian cause.

(Source: Slingshot Newspaper,, retrieved 2024 May 4)


Arranged as received.

Physical Location

Harvard Depository

Immediate Source of Acquisition

2024MT-66. Purchased from Bolerium Books with the Frank E. Chase Bequest, 2024 April 16.

Separated Materials

Aaron Aarons gave the bulk of his papers to The Long Haul, an anarchist resource center and community space in south Berkeley.

Processing Information

This collection was processed to a basic level with minimal rehousing, organization, and preservation. (Melanie Wisner, 2024)


Aarons, Aaron, collector. Aaron Aarons collection of San Francisco Bay Area theater ephemera, circa 1971-2006 (MS Thr 2331): Guide
Houghton Library, Harvard University.
2024 May 4
Description rules
Language of description

Repository Details

Part of the Houghton Library Repository

Houghton Library is Harvard College's principal repository for rare books and manuscripts, archives, and more. Houghton Library's collections represent the scope of human experience from ancient Egypt to twenty-first century Cambridge. With strengths primarily in North American and European history, literature, and culture, collections range in media from printed books and handwritten manuscripts to maps, drawings and paintings, prints, posters, photographs, film and audio recordings, and digital media, as well as costumes, theater props, and a wide range of other objects. Houghton Library has historically focused on collecting the written record of European and Eurocentric North American culture, yet it holds a large and diverse number of primary sources valuable for research on the languages, culture and history of indigenous peoples of the Americas, Africa, Asia and Oceania.

Houghton Library’s Reading Room is free and open to all who wish to use the library’s collections.

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