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Gamma Phi Circus Records

Overview

Abstract

Scope and Contents

Administrative Information

Detailed Description

Acts

Administration

Alumni

Camp

Correspondence

Facilities and Gym

Fundraising

Gamma Phi Circus Performances

History

Members

Other circuses

Photos

Photo Albums and Scrapbooks, Bound

Photo Albums and Scrapbooks, Unbound

Plaques and Objects

Sound Recordings

Video

Additions

Rick Mirro papers



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Gamma Phi Circus Records, 1920-2018 | Special Collections & Rare Books Room at Illinois State University

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Collection Overview

Title: Gamma Phi Circus Records, 1920-2018Add to your cart.

Primary Creator: Gamma Phi Circus.

Other Creators: Illinois State Normal University. Gamma Phi fraternity.

Extent: 38.0 Linear Feet

Arrangement:

The Gamma Phi Circus Records are arranged into seventeen series: 1: Acts,  2: Administration,  3: Alumni,  4: Camp, 5: Correspondence,  6: Facilities and Gym,  7: Fundraising,  8: Gamma Phi Circus Performances, 9: History, 10: Members, 11: Other Circuses, 12: Photos, 13: Photo Albums and Scrapbooks, Bound, 14: Photo Albums and Scrapbooks, Unbound, 15: Plaques and Objects, 16: Sound Recordings, and 17: Video.

Series 8: Gamma Phi Circus Performances, deals with the actual performances of  the circus, and is divided into eight sub-series: 1: Acts, 2: Equipment, 3: Exhibitions, 4: Programs, 5: Publicity, 6: Road Shows, 7: Spring Show, and 8: Tryouts. Other record series generally deal more with the activities of Gamma Phi as a registered student organization of Illinois State University.

Subjects: Circus--Illinois--Normal., Circus performers--Illinois--Normal., Gamma Phi Circus., Illinois State Normal University. Gamma Phi fraternity.

Languages: English

Abstract

Records of Gamma Phi Circus and the Gamma Phi fraternity of Illinois State University, Normal, Illinois. A portion of the collection contents have been digitized and are available online via this link.

Scope and Contents of the Materials

Series 1: Acts, 1952-2002, undated contains information compiled on various circus acts by Gamma Phi. Material generally seems to have been used to create Gamma Phi Circus acts rather than directly documenting acts performed by Gamma Phi members.

Series 2: Administration, 1962-2009, undated, consists of official records, governance documents, handbooks, and reports created by the organization Gamma Phi.

Series 3: Alumni, 1946-2006, undated, consists of records documenting Gamma Phi alumni and newsletters targeted for alumni.

Series 4: Camp, 1995-2004, undated, consists of records, correspondence, and a small amout of publicity material related to the Gamma Phi Circus Youth Camp.

Series 5: Correspondence,  1961-2004, undated, consists of incoming and outgoing correspondence of various individuals, primary directors of Gamma Phi such as Jerry Polacek and Arley F. Gillett.

Series 6: Facilities and Gym, 1976-2004, undated, consists of materials related to the various venues Gamma Phi has used for training and performing.

Series 7: Fundraising, 1984-2003, consists of materials related to raising money for Gamma Phi.

Series 8: Gamma Phi Circus Performances, 1932-2018, undated, contains materials related to the actual circus performance put on by Gamma Phi members. This series is divided into eight sub-series: 1: Acts, 2: Equipment, 3: Exhibitions, 4: Programs, 5: Publicity, 6: Road Shows, 7: Spring Show, and 8: Tryouts.

Series 9: History, 1903-2014, undated, contains materials related to the history of Gamma Phi. Material includes both photocopied resources (largely newsclippings) and written histories by various authors.

Series 10: Members, includes information cards, pledge materials, short humorous pieces written by Gamma Phi Members, and material related to a weight loss program.

Series 11: Other circuses, 1975-2002, undated, contains materials related to other circuses, including the Carson & Barnes Circus, which played in Bloomington, Illinois on September 7, 2000.

Series 12: Photos, 1930s-2008 consists of loose photos, primarily of Gamma Phi performances.

Series 13: Photo Albums and Scrapbooks, Bound, 1920s-1996, consists of bound photo albums and scrapbooks (generally with newspaper clippings) documenting Gamma Phi.

Series 14: Photo Albums and Scrapbooks, Unbound, 1930s-2015, consist of photos which were removed from scrapbooks for preservation reasons and digital photos on DVD.

Series 15: Plaques and Objects, 1931-2004, undated, consists of artifacts, primarily plaques, related to Gamme Phi and Gamma Phi founder Pop Horton.

Series 16: Sound Recordings, consists of vinyl records with popular music or gymnastic training sessions compiled by Gamma Phi.

Series 17: Video, 1938-2003, consists of videos of Gamma Phi circus, road shows, camps, circus acts (non-Gamma Phi), and other videos. These materials have been moved to cold storage for preservation reasons, and patrons wishing to access them should first contact the Special Collections Librarian.

A portion of the collection contents have been digitized and are available online via this link.

Collection Historical Note

Gamma Phi Circus, sponsored by Illinois State University, is the oldest collegiate circus in the United States. It began as the Gamma Phi fraternity, founded in 1929 by ISU gymnastics instructor Clifford "Pop" Horton. The fraternity's first circus performance took place in 1931. Gamma Phi Circus is a performing arts fraternal organization and is no longer affiliated with social fraternities or sororities and is a registered student organization. Membership is available by audition to all full-time ISU students, faculty, and staff. Illinois State University and Florida State University are the only four-year universities that have full-fledged circuses.

Subject/Index Terms

Circus--Illinois--Normal.
Circus performers--Illinois--Normal.
Gamma Phi Circus.
Illinois State Normal University. Gamma Phi fraternity.

Administrative Information

Repository: Special Collections & Rare Books Room at Illinois State University

Related Materials: Digitized Gamma Phi Circus Collection materials. A portion of the collection has been digitized and is available online. For more information please see http://digital.library.illinoisstate.edu/cdm/landingpage/collection/p15990coll16.

Other Note: Gamma Phi Circus website

Other URL: http://gammaphicircus.illinoisstate.edu/


Box and Folder Listing


Browse by Series:

[Series 1: Acts],
[Series 2: Administration],
[Series 3: Alumni],
[Series 4: Camp],
[Series 5: Correspondence],
[Series 6: Facilities and Gym],
[Series 7: Fundraising],
[Series 8: Gamma Phi Circus Performances],
[Series 9: History],
[Series 10: Members],
[Series 11: Other circuses],
[Series 12: Photos],
[Series 13: Photo Albums and Scrapbooks, Bound],
[Series 14: Photo Albums and Scrapbooks, Unbound],
[Series 15: Plaques and Objects],
[Series 16: Sound Recordings],
[Series 17: Video],
[Series 18: Additions, various dates.],
[Box 24: Rick Mirro papers, 1976-1979.],
[All]

Series 1: ActsAdd to your cart.
Box 1Add to your cart.
Folder 1: Acrobatics workshop, 1995Add to your cart.
Folder 2: Acrosports, 1986, undated.Add to your cart.
Folder 3: Act captain responsibilities, 1979-1981, 1992-2000.Add to your cart.
Includes roster of 1980-1981 act captains.
Folder 4: Act ideas, undated.Add to your cart.
Folder 5: Act layout forms, 2001-2002, undated.Add to your cart.
Folder 6: Chairs, 1993-1998.Add to your cart.
Folder 7: Circus band, 1997-2000.Add to your cart.
Folder 8: Clowns, 1952-1971.Add to your cart.
Folder 9: Clowns, 1978-1990, undated.Add to your cart.
Includes Gamma Phi Circus Clowns Coloring Book.
Folder 10: Cradle, 1989Add to your cart.
Folder 11: Double mini, 1989Add to your cart.
Folder 12: Fire eating, undated.Add to your cart.
By Deb Smith.
Folder 13: Hanging perch, undated.Add to your cart.
Photocopies of photographs.
Folder 14: Juggling, 1984, undated.Add to your cart.
Folder 15: Knock-a-bout, undated.Add to your cart.
Folder 16: Magic, undated.Add to your cart.
Folder 17: Pyramids, undated.Add to your cart.
Folder 18: Swinging ladder, undated.Add to your cart.
Description and photocopies of photographs.
Folder 19: Trapeze, 1978, 1983.Add to your cart.

Browse by Series:

[Series 1: Acts],
[Series 2: Administration],
[Series 3: Alumni],
[Series 4: Camp],
[Series 5: Correspondence],
[Series 6: Facilities and Gym],
[Series 7: Fundraising],
[Series 8: Gamma Phi Circus Performances],
[Series 9: History],
[Series 10: Members],
[Series 11: Other circuses],
[Series 12: Photos],
[Series 13: Photo Albums and Scrapbooks, Bound],
[Series 14: Photo Albums and Scrapbooks, Unbound],
[Series 15: Plaques and Objects],
[Series 16: Sound Recordings],
[Series 17: Video],
[Series 18: Additions, various dates.],
[Box 24: Rick Mirro papers, 1976-1979.],
[All]


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