The materials of the Ruth Ford Collection provide a broad view of the career and life
of the successful model and stage and film actor.
Close to thirty letters and postcards (1946-1991) from Elaine Steinbeck reveal an
intimate and long friendship, with three of the letters written when Elaine was
married to Zachary Scott. After Ford married Zachary Scott in 1952, Elaine Steinbeck
(who divorced Scott in 1949 and married Steinbeck in 1950) wrote, "We've been
friends for so long—but I never knew that one day we'd be related. It's a funny
feeling, I have to say that to be honest, but it is one I am beginning to like
much.. .. Of course my first reaction was and is the wish for your and Zack's
happiness. I wish it with all my heart. I don't see how it could be otherwise."
letter (1947) is from Zachary Scott to Ford.
Ruth Ford's reading and rehearsal copies of the script for Paul Bowles' No Exit (1946) are annotated in pencil, showing changes
as Ford prepared for the role of Estelle. These changes provide evidence that
director John Huston made changes against the wishes of Jean-Paul Sartre and Bowles.
Related to this Ford performance are telegrams and letters offering congratulations
on her opening night performance, including some from contemporary notables such
Gloria Safier, Mel Dinelli, Eustace Seligman, and Claude Dauphin. Also present
original Biltmore Theatre playbill.
In addition, the collection includes a small amount of material from Fleur Cowles
Ruth Ford consisting of eighteen letters, cards, and telegrams (1968-1990), along
with clippings, brochures, and various invitations to events honoring Cowles.
present are four letters (1944-1969?) from Henry Miller to Ruth Ford, with a flyer
for a Miller celebration event.
The Ruth Ford collection is made up of four 2010 acquisitions. Each acquisition
contains some correspondence which has been arranged chronologically. Although
telegrams are on acidic and fragile paper, all of the materials are in relatively