Series S2 - Family letter files

[Caroline Little Pierce and niece Minnie Twitchell] [Caroline Little Pierce and niece Minnie Twitchell] [Head and shoulders studio portrait of Ted Taylor] [Mary Louise Taylor] [Mary Louise, Ted and Ken Taylor at the] San Diego Exposition [Ruth Wing standing outside] [Ruth Wing] [Ruth Wing and a cat] [Ruth Wing] [Ted Taylor and a co-worker at Metro Picture Studios] [Ted Taylor and unidentified woman in yard] [Ted Taylor standing in outside area of Arizona State Prison] [Ted Taylor standing with camera in outside area of Arizona State Prison] [Ted Taylor with co-workers at Metro Picture Studios] [Caroline Little Pierce sitting on porch] [Ruth Wing and Ted Taylor] [Ruth Wing and unidentified woman] [Ted Taylor examining sheet of paper with unidentified man] Miss Marion Pierce [standing in front of a house] [Ruth Wing] [Ruth Wing] [Ruth Wing] [Ted Taylor at] Goldwyn [L.D. Taylor standing in forest] [L.D. Taylor standing next to large tree stump] [L.D. Taylor standing on bridge] Hugh Blair, Parts - Bits [Ruth Wing standing at open door] [Ruth Wing standing outside with a girl] [Ted Taylor and Paris Times co-workers aboard yacht in the Seine River, Paris] [Mary Louise Taylor at the beach] [Mary Louise Taylor standing outside with an unidentified girl] [Ted Taylor] Feb. 1927 - Los Angeles Calif[ornia] - Mrs. J.L.S. [Simmons], Mrs. O.J. Pierce [Caroline Little P... Feb. 1927 - Mrs. [Simmons] and C.L.P. [Catherine Little Pierce] [Mary Louise Taylor] [Mary Louise Taylor in wash tub] [Mary Louise Taylor sitting in chair outdoors] [Mary Louise Taylor and George Beaton] [Mary Louise Taylor and George Beaton] [Mary Louise Taylor and George Beaton] [Mary Louise Taylor and George Beaton] [Mary Louise Taylor and George Beaton] [Mary Louise Taylor playing oudoors] [Mary Louise Taylor playing oudoors] [Mary Louise Taylor playing outside by a small pool] [Mary Louise Taylor sitting outside with unknown woman] [Ted Taylor] Jadwiga H. [Salcula?], Ken Chamberlain, [Ted Taylor] and Eve Denise, Maisons Alfort [L.D. Taylor and Kate Taylor Cooley family, Thanksgiving 1929]
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Family letter files

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  • Textual record

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  • Source of title proper: Title based on contents of series

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Physical description

  • 1.64 m of textual records
  • 357 photographs : b&w nitrate negatives and prints

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Biographical history

Theodore (Ted) Pierce Taylor was born September 5, 1896 in Oak Park, Illinois, to L.D. and Annie Louise Taylor, shortly after L.D. s arrival in Vancouver, British Columbia. Annie and Ted joined L.D. in Vancouver in 1901, and lived there until 1906, when Annie moved Ted and his brother Kenneth (Ken) (b. 1902) to Los Angeles.

Ted graduated from L.A. Berendo High School in June 1915. As a student, he was active in theatre and the school newspaper. Upon graduation, he began writing about motion pictures and, in 1918, he became a reporter for the Los Angeles Times . In March 1919, Ted was hired as the Director of the News Department for the Metro Pictures Corporation. Upon his resignation in May 1920, he became the editor and publisher of the Studio Publicists Association s Mouth Organ . Later that year he worked for Universal Pictures for a short time and then concentrated on freelance publicity work for individuals such as Ferdinand Earle, William Desmond Taylor and Reginald Barker. In 1921 Ted married Ruth Wing.

Following employment as the editor and publisher of CAMERA! in 1921 and 1922, Ted was hired as Motion Picture Editor and editor of the Cinematters column for the Los Angeles Record in July 1922. In 1923, he also worked as a publicist for the Goldwyn Pictures Corporation.

Immediately following an appointment as the Los Angeles representative of the New York Morning Telegraph in January 1925, Ted moved to Paris, France with Mary Beaton (b. July 19, 1905), the daughter of Octavia (d. 1946) and George Beaton (d. 1938). Having obtained a divorce from Ruth Wing, he married Mary and she gave birth to a daughter, Mary Louise Taylor, on April 16, 1925. Mary died shortly after from complications related to the birth. Ted remained in Paris until September 1928, working as a reporter for the Paris Times . Octavia Beaton arrived in Paris in later in 1925 to care for Mary Louise, and returned with Mary to the United States in 1928. In 1929, they joined Ted in Los Angeles.

Upon his return to Los Angeles, Ted became the manager of the L.A. Press Services, which Ken, now the editor of the Los Angeles Express, had been running in his absence. For the next several years, Ted was employed in various press positions, including: reporter, Variety (September 1929 to June 1932); editor, Los Angeles Today (September 1933); reporter and assistant editor, Hollywood Reporter (May 1934-October 1937); publicity copy editor, features, Columbia Pictures (October 1937-June 1940); editor and weekly columnist, Hollywood MOVIES (August to December 1940, 1941). He then worked as a freelance publicist, and acquired additional employment with the Screen Publicists Guild, Screen Cartoonists Guild, Hollywood Sun , War Labor Board, Federated Press, and the magazines Frauds and Cosmopolitan . He was also a co-writer of Leonard Louis Levinson s The Left-Handed Dictionary .

Ted was an active member of several organizations during his career, including the Western Association of Motion Picture Advertisers (WAMPAS), Screen Publicists Guild, Affiliated Picture Interests, Committee of 14, Los Angeles Press Club, American Newspaper Guild, Motion Picture Democratic Committee, Conference of Studio Unions, Los Angeles Central Labor Council, and the Victory Council.

Custodial history

Scope and content

Series consists of correspondence and other records created by and pertaining to the activities of the Taylor, Pierce and Beaton families, arranged chronologically into files by Ted Taylor. The majority of the records pertain to the personal and professional activities of Ted Taylor, and concern his relationships with family members, marriages, friendships, involvement with various associations, and his career as a Hollywood publicist and journalist, including his work at Metro Pictures, Goldwyn Pictures and Universal Pictures studios. The series also includes, to a lesser extent, records of Caroline Little Pierce, Annie Louise Taylor, Winifred Mabel Pierce, Ken Taylor, Octavia Beaton, Mary Beaton and Mary Louise Taylor. In addition to correspondence, the series includes photographs, notes, articles, legal documents, financial records, appointment books, address books, notebooks, newspaper clippings, studio passes, sketches and drawings, journals, newsletters and other publications, scripts, cards, ephemera, newsletters, agreements, objects and programs.
In addition to correspondence, the series includes photographs, notes, legal documents, financial records, agreements, journals, articles, notebooks, appointment books, address books, sketches and drawings, scripts, newspaper clippings, newsletters and other publications, studio passes, programs, cards, ephemera and objects.

Notes area

Physical condition

Some records in this series are very acidic and brittle. Some items have been affected by mold

Includes 285 prints and 72 nitrate negatives

Immediate source of acquisition


  • Series is arranged chronologically
  • Copies of photographs already retained and described elsewhere in the fonds were not retained; however, their presence within a file was noted
  • The records within this series are a continuation of the Family letter files series in the Osborne J. Pierce family sousfonds; as these files contained mainly Ted Taylor records, they were described as part of this sousfonds

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Restrictions apply to some records within this series.

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  • File descriptions are available
  • Item descriptions are available for some photographs

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General note

Some general receipts, bills, scraps of paper, greeting cards, publications, ephemeral items, and duplicate photographs were culled from the files.


Photographs were physically removed from files and stored separately from textual records for preservation reasons

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