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Eddie Cass collection of traditional drama material


Held at: University of Pennsylvania: Kislak Center for Special Collections, Rare Books and Manuscripts [Contact Us]3420 Walnut Street, Philadelphia, PA 19104-6206

This is a finding aid. It is a description of archival material held at the University of Pennsylvania: Kislak Center for Special Collections, Rare Books and Manuscripts. Unless otherwise noted, the materials described below are physically available in their reading room, and not digitally available through the web.

Overview and metadata sections

Born in Manchester, England on February 12, 1937, Edward Fletcher Cass was educated at Central High School, Manchester College of Commerce, Manchester Polytechnic, and Edge Hill University, from which he earned his PhD in 1996. His career was varied, and included employment in pharmacy, coal mining, and, for much of his working life, banking.

Following his retirement from banking in 1993, Cass focused his time and energy on the history and literature of his home city, Manchester, and the surrounding region. From there, "his interests turned towards folklore, and in particular, the pace-egg plays of Lancashire," (Atkinson, page 113). His interests quickly turned to scholarship and he authored or co-edited a number of works. He was a research fellow at the National Centre for English Cultural tradition at Sheffield University, from 1997 to 2004, where he worked "initially on the history of nineteenth century folk play chapbooks and the pace-egg plays," (Oates, page 84). He was president of the Folklore Society from 2008 to 2011 and president of the Society for Folk Life Studies from 2011-2014. He was awarded the Folklore Society's Coote Lake Medal, not long before his death on September 17, 2014, at the age of 77.

Works consulted:

Atkinson, David, "Edward Fletcher Cass (1937-2014)," Folk Music Journal, Volume 11, Issue 1, 2016, pages 113-115.

Oates, Caroline, "Edward Fletcher Cass," Folk Life, Volume 53, Number 1, 2015 May, pages 82-85.

Schofield, Derek, "Edward Fletcher Cass (1937-2014)," Folklore, Volume 126, 2015 April, pages 98-100.

This collection consists of 22 bound volumes of photocopies of articles, periodicals, play scripts, manuscript essays, etc. relating to all aspects of traditional drama. The volumes, collectively titled "Traditional Drama" were bound and sub-titled as follows: Volumes I and II: Miscellaneous; Volumes III, IV, and V: Rochdale Plays; Volume VI: The Middleton Play; Volume VII: Manchester; Volumes VIII and IX: The Bury Play; Volume X: The Revesby Play; Volume XI: Chapbook Texts; Volume XII: Miscellaneous; Volume XIII: Seven Champions of Christendom; Volume XIV: Miscellaneous; Volume XV: Alderley Mummers; Volume XVI: Sword Plays; Volume XVII and XVIII: Southport Mummers; Volume XIX: Lancashire; Volume XIX: Helm at Keele; Volume XXI: Alex Helm-Miscellaneous material; and Volume XXII: Miscellaneous.

When a table of contents existed, it was listed under each volume--researchers should be aware that the order of the lists is the order in which the contents are bound. Researchers should also be aware that almost all material is reprographic copies and not original material. Occasionally, there are copies of photographs and brochures in the volumes, but the overwhelming bulk of material is copied. Therefore, the dates of the material are significantly later than the dates of the original content which ranges from as early as 1878 (although much is undated).

These volumes were probably compiled by Eddie Cass and certainly came from his library. The topical focus of the volumes is strongly tied to his studies and probably aided him in his own research.

Sold by White Fox Rare Books and Antiques, 2018.

University of Pennsylvania: Kislak Center for Special Collections, Rare Books and Manuscripts
Finding Aid Author
Holly Mengel
Finding Aid Date
2019 April 23
Access Restrictions

This collection is open for research use.

Use Restrictions

Copyright restrictions may exist. For most library holdings, the Trustees of the University of Pennsylvania do not hold copyright. It is the responsibility of the requester to seek permission from the holder of the copyright to reproduce material from the Kislak Center for Special Collections, Rare Books and Manuscripts.

Collection Inventory

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T. Fairman Ordish, English Folk Drama, paper 1: Folk-Lore, Vol. II, No. III, 1891 and paper 2: Folk-Lore, Vol. IV, No. II, 1893.
T. Fairman Ordish, English Folk Drama, paper 3: Typescript (EFC) of Ordish's text of unpublished lecture.
T. Fairman Ordish, English Folk Drama, photocopies of papers.
Mary Danielli, "Jellyboys, or Pace Eggers, in Westmorland," Folk-Lore, Vol. LXII, No. 4, 1951.
Margaret Dean-Smith, "The Life-Cycle Play or Folk Play," Folk-Lore, Vol. 69, No. 4, 1958.
Jessie L. Weston, "From Ritual to Romance," CUP, Chapter VII, The Sword Dance, 1920.
Judith Chester, "Mumming Plays: the hero-combatant," BA Dissertation, Trent Polytechnic, April 1977.
John Boyd Hyland, "We're Jolly Boys".
Unknown author, "Pace Egging Workshop," 18. 2., 1977.
Arthur Raistrick, "The Mummer's Play," The Dalesman, 1947 April.
Peter Harrop, "This Play was Acted Here Before," Sword dancing at Ripon, Boxing Day, 1977 (typescript).
Georgina Boyes, "Institutional Basis of Performance: a socio-economic analysis of contemporary folk-plays," Roomer, Vol. 2, No. 6.
Sandra Billington and Craig Fees, "Theorising Folk Drama," Roomer.
Thomas Pettitt, "'Here Comes I, Jack Straw:' English Folk Drama and Social Revolt" FolkLore, Vol. 95, No. II, 1984.
Simon Lichman, "'The Gardener's Story: The Metafolklore of a Mumming Tradition" Folklore, Vol. 93, No. I, 1982.
Venetia Newall, "'The Turkish Knight in English Traditional Drama," Folklore, Vol. 92, No. II, 1981.
Craig Fees, "'The BBC and Mumming," Roomer.
Karen Read, "'The Symondsbury Mumming Play and the People who uphold it," English Dance and Song, Autumn/Winter 1984-Spring 1985.
Barbara Brown, "'History of a Revival Mummers' Side," English Dance and Song, Vol. 42, No. 3.
Bob Grant and Mike Heaney, "'In Steps I," English Dance and Song, Vol. 43, No. 4.
Roger D. Abrahams, "Folk Drama" in Folklore and Folklife, edited by R.M. Dorson, Chicago, 1972.
Anne [C.] Burson, "Redefining Folk Drama: Towards an Expanded Definition," University of Pennsylvania; and "Model and Text in Folk Drama," Journal of American Folklore, Vol. 93, No. 369, 1980 (pages 305-316).
[EFDSS], "The Play of the Christmas Mummers: Easter Pace-Eggers and the Soulers of Hallowe'en," EFDSS, London, circa 1968.
Peter Harrop, "Mumming in Bampton," Folk Life, Vol. 18, 1980 (pages 18-48).
Alan Howkins and Linda Merrick, "'Wee be black as hell:' Ritual, Disguise and Rebellion," Rural History, Vol. 4, No. 1, 1993 (pages 41-53).
E.T. Kirby, "The Origin of the Mummer's Play," Journal of American Folklore, Vol. 84, No. 333, 1971 (pages 275-288) and correspondence between Cawte and Kirby.
Martin J. Lovelace, "Christmas Mumming in England: The House Visit," in Folklore Studies in Honour of Herbert Halpert, edited by K.S. Goldstein and N.V. Rosenberg, Newfoundland, 1980 (pages 271-281).
Sally-Ann Newman, "Does the extant Mummers' play possess more inherent value for the participant than the Revival Mummers' play?" paper given at "Perspectives in Folk Drama" conference at Bretton Hall, 1979.
Thomas Pettitt, "Ritual and Vaudeville: The Dramaturgy of the English Folk Plays," Pre-publication papers, No. 19, Odense University, 1981 and "Early English Traditional Drama: Approaches and Perspectives," Research Opportunities in Renaissance Drama, Vol. XXV, 1982.

William Robertson, Old and New Rochale and its People (pages 40-45).
Alex Helm, The Chapbook Mummers' Play: A Study of the Printed Version of the North West of England.
P. Stevenson and G. Buckley, "The Chapbook and the Pace Egg Play in Rochdale, typescript of lecture; published version in Traditional Drama, volume 1.
John Priestnall and William E. Mitchell, "The Play of St. George, the Knights and the Dragon," typescript.
John Priestnall and William E. Mitchell, "The Play of St. George, the Knights and the Dragon," printed version for private circulation.
Peter Stevenson, "The Peace Egg and St. George: An Easter Play," Traditional Drama Research Group.
Edwards & Bryning, three copies of the text of the play.
A collection of press cuttings assembled by the Rochdale Local Studies Library.
Press cuttings.
Photographs (photocopies) from the Rochdale Library Collection.
Photographs (copies) from the Rochdale Library Collection.
Peter Stevenson, correspondence, field notes, and play texts.
Paul Smith, copy letters, play texts, and questionnaires sent to Peter Stevenson.
Priestnall and Mitchell, correspondence with Cyril Smith and Duncan Broomhead, press cuttings, the "Mitchell Collection".

J. Tholhon, "Early Recollections of Middleton," Middleton Guardian, 1888 January 7 and Dean Scrapbook, Vol. 1, page 13, Middleton Local Studies Library.
Martin Gittins, Interview, 1997 June 5 and "We Beg Your Leave ..." booklet and unpublished article.
Press cuttings.
Press cuttings and photographs (photocopies) from Middleton Library.
Middleton Pace Eggers, publicity material.
Middleton Pace Eggers, Players, 1967-1990.
Martin Gittins and Tim Beech, radio interview, 1983 April 1.

Manchester Mechanics' Institution, Annual Reports and Christmas Programmes.
William Sandys, Christmas Carols, Ancient and Modern.
Kathleen R. Farrar, The Mechanics' saturnalia.
W.A. Brabner, A School Party of 1861.
Roger Bryant's notes on the Manchester Mechanics' Institution.
"Notes and Queries, Manchester City News, 1878/1879. and text from Nodal's book reprints.
T. Swindells, Easter Pace-Eggers.
"Notes and Queries, Manchester City News, 1905, 1920.
Alex Helm, "Notes and Queries" transcripts.
Thomas L. Ellwood, Pace-Egging in Chorlton-cum-Hardy.
J.M. Lloyd, The township of Chorlton-cum-Hardy.
Louis M. Hayes, Reminiscences of Manchester.

Alan Seymour, Scrapbook (photocopy), 1970-1997.
Alan Seymour, Interview notes.
Ken Bolton, Interview notes.
[EFC], notes on play performances, Easter, 1998.
[Alan Seymour, EFC], team list, 1997.
[EFC], The story of the Bury Pace-Eggers.
Play text.
Advertising material.
Book references.
Press cuttings (for earlier cuttings, see scrapbook, volume VIII).
"Slasher's Resurrection," transcript of radio broadcast on Radio Manchester, 1977 April 3.
"The Pace Egg Play," by Bury Girls Grammar School (Junior School), Easter, 1998.
Peter Stevenson, notes of interview on Bury customs with Mrs. Jenny Wood, 1976 February 14.

The Lincolnshire Manuscript.
Morrice Dancers at Revesby (the CECTAL facsimile).
Letter to A. Helm regarding the British Museum manuscript.
R. Flower, "The Revesby Play," British Museum Quarterly, Vol. 11, 1936-1937.
E.[K.] Chambers, The Revesby Play. The English Folk Play. Clarendon Press, 1933.
Michael J. Preston, "The Revesby Sword Play: An Eighteenth Century Folk Play Adaption," 1975.
Ivor Allsop, "Revesby: Longsword Dances from Traditional and Manuscript Sources," Northern Harmony, Vermont, 1996.
T. Fairman Ordish, "Morris dance at Revesby," Folk-Lore Journal, Vol. VIII, 1989.
W.R.W. Kettlewell, "The National Festival, Albert Hall, 1935," EFDS News, Vol. IV, No. 39, Part 4, 1935 March.
J. Mitchell Morse, "The Unity of the Revesby Sword Play," Philological Quarterly, Vol. XXXIII, No. 1, 1954 January.
E.C. Cawte, et al, "The Bridal Play of the East Midlands," ERD, Folklore Society, 1967.
A. Brody, "Excursus on the Entertainment at Revesby: The English Mummers and their Plays," RKP, London, 1969.
M.J. Preston, "The Revesby Sword Play," Journal of the American Folklore Society, Vol. 85, No. 335, 1972.
E.C. Cawte, Ritual Animal Disguise, D.S. Brewer, 1978.
P & G Smith, "The Plouboys or Modes Dancers at Revesby," English Song and Dance, Spring, 1980.
T. Pettitt, "English Folk Drama in the Eighteenth Century: A Defense of the Revesby Sword Play," Comparative Drama, Vol. XV, 1981.
G. Boyes, "Excellent Examples: the Influence of Exemplar Texts on Traditional Drama Scholarship," Traditional Drama Studies, Vol. I, 1985.
M. Heaney, "New Light on the Revesby Sword Play," Notes and Queries, 1988 June.
G.S. Gibbons, "A Mumming Play: Lincolnshire," Notes and Queries, Vol. XVIII, No. vii, 1925.

Correspondence relating to chapbooks.
J.R.R. Adams, "The Coming of Mass Readership".
Edwards & Bryning, "The Peace Egg or St. George".
Alan Gailey, "A Missing Belfast Chapbook".
"On the Chapbook, 'The Christmas Rhime'".
"Chapbook Influence on Irish Mummers' Plays".
"The Christmas Rhime".
Alex Helm, "The Chapbook Mummers' Play".
Chapbook texts from eight Mummer's plays.
Compilation chapbook text from Folklore Society material.
Ben Hird, "The 'Pace Egg,'" The Dalesman.
[H.D.C. Pepler], A check-list of books, pamphlets, broadsheets ...
Michael J. Preston, "Inventing a Printing History for the Peace Egg Chapbook".
M.J. Preston, P.S. Smith, and M.G. Smith, SLF Research Projects: Traditional Drama, Parts 1 and 2.
Chapbook Printers--Search checklist.
The Peace Egg Chapbook in Scotland.
An Interim Checklist of Chapbooks containing Traditional Play Texts.
David Buchan, a review.
Alexander and the King of Egypt chapbooks.
The lost chapbooks.
Georgina Smith, "Chapbook Sources of British Traditional Drama".
Chapbooks and Traditional Plays.
M. Spufford, "Small Books and Pleasant Histories".
P. Stevenson, "Urban Folk Drama".
P. Stevenson and G. Buckley, "The Chapbook and the Pace Egg Play in Rochdale".

C.R. Baskervill, "The Sources of Jonson's Masque of Christmas".
Arthur Beatty, "The St. George, or Mummers' Plays".
Malcolm Bee, "'Old Berkshire' Mummers' Plays" and "The Drayton Mummers' Play".
John Brennan, "Workshop on Pace Egging".
Andrew Brice, "The Mobiad".
C.S. Burne & G.F. Jackson, "Morris Dancing and Plays".
E.C. Cawte, "Research, or Just Collecting".
E.K. Chambers, "The Mummers' Play (The Mediaeval Stage)".
G.H. Cowling, "The Mummers' Play".
T. Crofton Croker, "Recollections of Cork".
M. Dean-Smith, "The Un-Romantic View of the Mummers' Play" and review by Violet Alford.
John Drake, "The Fool in the 19th Century English Seasonal Drama".
Thomas A. Green, introduction to special issue on drama, Journal of the American Folklore Society.
P. Happé, "The Vice and the Folk-Drama".
Peter Millington, "A New Look at English Folk Play Costumes".
Tom Pettitt, "Cork Revisited," "Customary Drama: Social and Spatial Patterning in Traditional Encounters," and "review of Craig Fees' PhD thesis.
T.N. Postlethwaite, "Pace-Egging Play".
M.J. Preston, "The Oldest British Folk Play".
M.J. Preston and P. Smith, "See, Sirs. See. Here ...".
William Sandys, "Christmas Carols. Ancient and Modern" and "Christmastime: Its History, Festivities and Carols".
Ron Shuttleworth, "B.J. Ward--A Counterblast".
L.M. Weidlich, "The Mummers' Play: A Structural Analysis".

Cawte, Helm and Peacock, "English Ritual Drama".
E.K. Chambers, "The English Folk-Play".
R. Johnson, "Notes on the prose text".
W.S. Fortey, "Prose Chapbook".
John Kirke, "The Seven Champions of Christendom" (also edited by Giles Edwin Dawson).
W.J. Lawrence, "John Kirke, the Caroline Actor Dramatist".
P. Merchant, "Thomas Heywood's hand in the Seven Champions of Christendom".
William Walker, "The Seven Champions of Christendom".
C.H. Johnson, "The Four Champions of Great Britain".

Margaret Dean-Smith, "An Un-Romantic View of the Mummers' Play," Theatre Research, Vol. VIII, No. 2, 1966.
Jon Drake, "The Fool and the Hobby Horse: Their Role in Ritual Drama of Britain".
Mark Ferguson, "Traditional Drama Scholarship in Great Britain," Sheffield University, 1989.
Alan Gailey, "Irish Folk Drama".
Alex Helm, "The English Folk Play".
[R.I. Leach], "Harrap's Theatre Workshop: Folk Playtexts".
Pete Louis, "Costumes and Props in the Folk Drama," Sheffield University.
R. Morton Nance, "Guise-Dancing and the Christmas Play".
Thomas Pettitt, "Pyramus and Thisbe" and the Early English Mummers' Play, Traditional Drama Conference, 1998.
Carol S. Rowntree, "The Celebrated Marshfield Mummers," Sheffield University, 1978.

Duncan Broomhead file.
Papers, 1999.
Volume XVI: Sword Plays.
Box 2 Folder 7

Malcom Howarth's scrapbook.
Play Texts.
Publicity handouts.
Text for Theatre Performance.

Mummers' newsletters.
Minutes of meetings.

Stuart Lawrence--Furness Collection.
Kate Harryman--Spatial Aspects of the Furness Pace-Egging Play.
Ordish--Lancashire collection.
Volume XX: Helm at Keele.
Box 3 Folder 3

"Here Comes I, St. George," Folklore, Vol. LXXVI, 1965.
"The Mummer's Play," Theatre Notebook, Vol. XVII, Winter 1963-1964.
Unusual texts.
Northamptonshire Folk Plays.
The Life-Cycle Drama in England.
The Life-Cycle Drama.
The Life-Cycle Play.
The Revitalisation Ceremony in Ireland and Scotland.
Preservation of Tradition.
Mummers and Morris.
The English Folk Play (Nos. 1 and 2).

Roger Abrahams, "Folk Drama".
Suheyla Artemel, "'The Great Turk's Particular Inclination to Red Herring:' The Popular Image of the Turk During the Renaissance in England".
Arthur Beatty, "The St. George, or Mummers' Plays: A Study in the Protology of the Drama".
P.G. Bogatyrev, "Scenery, Artistic Place, and Artistic Time in Folk Theatre".
D.M. Cary, "Mediaeval Mysteries and Modern Mummers".
Lynette Feasey, "Old England at Play: Old Plays Adapted for Young Players".
Joseph Fontenrose, "The Ritual Theory of Myth".
H. Hartman, "An Old Mummer at the Chequers, Wheeler End".
John Jackson, "The Scottish Stage".
E.T. Kirby, "Ur-Drama: the Origins of Theatre".
F.R. Melton, "Folk Songs, Dances, and Plays from Local Lore: An Introduction to History".
R. Morton Nance, "Guise Dancing and the Christmas Play".
A.W. Pollard, "Old Christmas Plays".
Michael J. Preston, "The British Folk Play: An Elaborate Luck Visit?".
J.S. Udal," Christmas Mummers in Dorsetshire".
A.J.B. Wace, "Mumming Plays in the Southern Balkans".
Nathan B. Warren, "'Christmas Mummers' and 'Christmas Gambols' from the Holidays".

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