Early Works of Notable Alumni: Part 2

Are there any early works of notable Emerson alums in the Archives?

Here are the remaining notables broken down by discipline:


Bill Dana, Comedian/Actor/Screenwriter

Bill Dana attended Emerson College as William Szathmary and graduated in 1950. Starting out as a page at NBC’s 30 Rock, he went on to create the character Jose Jimenez on the Steve Allen Show and frequently appeared on the Ed Sullivan Show. He went on to have his own show, the Bill Dana Show from 1963­ to 1965. Dana’s collection established the American Comedy Archives at Emerson College.

bill dana


Denis Leary, Writer/Comedian/Actor/

Denis Leary graduated from Emerson in 1979 and began teaching at Emerson shortly after graduation through the mid­-1980s. The Archives has some of his writings from his contributions to the student publication Scribe, as well as photos and a short video done by Emerson Comedy Workshop.

extinction agency

Spalding Gray, Actor/Writer

Spalding Gray graduated from Emerson in 1965. The Archives has some of his writings from his contributions to the student publication Scribe.



Henry Lawrence Southwick, Former faculty member and longest-serving president of the College

The lives of Henry and his wife, Jesse Southwick, were heavily intertwined with the history of Emerson College. Both were alumni and both taught at the school. Mr. Southwick was well known both in the United States and abroad for his oration and his roles in a variety of Shakespearean plays. The College maintains photographs, scrapbooks, and books from the Southwicks. Their daughter, Ruth Southwick Maxwell, was also an alumna, and taught for several years before becoming head of the English department and then counsellor of women.


June Hamblin Mitchell, Former faculty member

June “Mama” Mitchell received an undergraduate degree from Emerson in 1935 and a graduate degree from Emerson in 1944. She taught oratory for more than 40 years at the College and was said to have been the last who was taught directly by the Southwicks. The Archives holds some of her papers from when she was a faculty member.

Ken Crannell, Former faculty member

Ken Crannell, Emerson Class of 1955, also taught at the College for more than 40 years and was a student of June Hamblin Mitchell. The Archives has some books, video, and papers from his time teaching at Emerson.

Christina Zamon (Iwasaki Library)