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James Arnold Colbath earned a B.S. in 1948 from the University of Maine, a M.A. (1950), M.F.A. (1951), and Ph.D. (1962) from Case Western Reserve University. Colbath's Ph.D. was on Japanese Noh drama. Colbath taught at a number of academic institutions from 1951-1968 before returning to the University of Maine in 1968 as an Associate Professor of Theatre. While at the University of Maine Colbath was also the Area Coordinator of the Theatre Division in the School of Performing Arts and Director of the Maine Masque Theatre (1970-1978). In 1977, Colbath was named a Fellow to the National Endowment for the Humanities "Symposium on Shakespeare in Performance. Colbath died in 1986.

Records contain textual and photographic information created and curated by Colbath during his career in theatre. Also, includes audio recordings of some theatre performances that Colbath was involved in directing and set and costume designs. Also, draft manuscripts of an unpublished biography Colbath wrote on the French actor and director Jacques Copeau. Biographical and family items include biographical profiles of Colbath, information on his military service during World War II, his military uniform, a regiment photograph, a photograph of and letter to Colbath's wife Mary Lou, and a photograph of Colbath's son Sean.

Publication Date



Education, Fine Arts, Military and War


Theatre and Performance Studies | United States History

Size of Collection

10 boxes, 1 half-size box, 1 folio folder

Dates of Collection

1907-1994, bulk 1955-1986

Manuscript Number

UA RG 0011.045

Professor Colbath (James Arnold) Papers, 1907-1994