Leona Craft Creager Papers

Summary Information

Emporia State University Special Collections and Archives
Creager, Leona Craft.
Leona Craft Creager Papers
Undated, 1969-1989
9.5 Linear feet
Graphic design mechanicals prepared mostly for Emporia State University’s theatrical productions, with a few items prepared for other events.

Preferred Citation note

Leona Craft Creager Papers, Emporia State University Archives, Emporia State University.

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Biographical/Historical note

Leona M. Craft was born on April 16, 1925 in Dennison, Ohio, to Levi Heiple and Jacynthia Adell (McDonald) Craft. She enrolled in the School of Fine and Applied Art in the College of Education at Ohio State University in 1943 and majored in commercial art. During her college years she was a member of the Delta Phi Delta national fine arts honorary society, the Education Council, the Kappa Phi national organization of Methodist Girls Clubs, the Pleiades theater group, and Pi Lambda Theta. She graduated in 1947 with a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree. After graduating, she worked for several years at an advertising agency in Cleveland, Ohio. She married Charles Bicknell Creager in Dennison, Ohio, on June 14, 1951. The Creagers’ children are Forrest C. Creager, Melora M. Creager, and Rachel A. Creager Ireland. In 1953 the Creagers moved to Salina, Kansas, where Charles became a physics instructor at Kansas Wesleyan University. Leona Creager continued to do graphic design work, including producing posters for the Salina Community Theatre. In 1961 she collaborated with Benjamin Willis Fuson to create the Centennial Literary Map of Kansas, 1861-1961. The Creagers moved to Emporia, Kansas, in 1971 when Charles became the Chairman of the Division of Physical Sciences at Kansas State Teachers College of Emporia. Leona continued to do freelance graphic design. In consultation with Karl C. Bruder, the head of the Department of Speech, Leona created posters for the various theater productions. Her design work for the theater productions occurred from 1971 to 1989, and her materials reflect the institutional name changes to Emporia Kansas State College in 1974, then to Emporia State University in 1977. Leona’s other design work includes designing the book cover of   Who Controls Our Schools? The Governance of Public Education in Kansas for the League of Women Voters of Kansas in 1986. Leona Craft Creager died on October 21, 2008.

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Scope and Contents note

There are 56 graphic design mechanicals with various numbers of pieces including paste-up boards and overlays. Two undated and untitled boards are not recognizably related to Emporia State University, with one board showing Indianapolis landmarks. One board is from the McPherson Theatre Guild’s 1969 production of The Star-Spangled Girl. There is one board for the 1984 Alpha Theta Rho Thieves’ Market art sale, and one board for the Associated Student Government’s 1986 Halloween Homecoming Royalty. One set of art work is a 1988 design for a birth announcement for one of Creager’s grandchildren. The other 50 designs relate to productions by the Department of Speech and Theatre Arts, Summer Theatre, Opera Theatre, Children’s Theatre, and the Homecoming Musical. Unusual features among the mechanicals include an amberlith overlay for the 1977 production of  Mame and a board and three stripped-up negatives for the 1979 production of  Annie Get Your Gun.

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Arrangement note


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Administrative Information

Publication Information

Emporia State University Special Collections and Archives June-October, 2008

1200 Commercial St
Campus Box 4051
Emporia, KS, 66801
(620) 341-6431

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Related Materials

Related Archival Materials note

Some examples of finished posters and program art designed by Leona Craft Creager are in the Communication and Theater record group (ESU003.004.003). The Bulletin student newspaper has many articles reporting on theatrical productions (see “Student Productions” in the Bulletin Index). The  Sunflower yearbooks have various photographs and descriptions of theatrical productions.

Separated Materials note


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Controlled Access Headings

Corporate Name(s)

  • Alpha Theta Rho (Emporia State University. Dept. of Art).
  • Emporia Kansas State College. Dept. of Music.
  • Emporia Kansas State College. Dept. of Speech.
  • Emporia State University. Associated Student Government.
  • Emporia State University. Dept. of Music.
  • Emporia State University. Dept. of Speech and Theater Arts.
  • Kansas State Teachers College of Emporia. Dept. of Speech.
  • McPherson Theatre Guild (McPherson, Kan.).
  • Ohio State University -- Students.
  • Opera Theatre (Emporia Kansas State College. Dept. of Music).
  • Opera Theatre (Emporia State University. Dept. of Music).

Personal Name(s)

  • Bruder, Karl C.
  • Creager, Charles Bicknell, 1924- .


  • Birth announcements.
  • Children’s theater -- Kansas -- Emporia.
  • College and school drama -- Posters.
  • College musicals -- Kansas -- Emporia.
  • College theater -- Kansas -- Emporia.
  • Commercial art.
  • Graphic arts -- Technique.
  • Historic buildings -- Indiana -- Indianapolis.
  • Historic sites -- Indiana -- Indianapolis.
  • Mechanicals (Camera-ready copy)
  • Monuments -- Indiana -- Indianapolis.
  • Musicals -- Kansas -- Emporia.
  • Opera posters -- Kansas -- Emporia.
  • Paste-up (Printing)
  • Photolithography.
  • Student activities -- Kansas -- Emporia.
  • Summer theater -- Kansas -- Emporia.
  • Theater -- Kansas -- Emporia.
  • Theatrical posters, American -- Kansas -- Emporia
  • Theatrical posters, American -- Kansas -- McPherson.

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Collection Inventory


 Undated, 1969-1980.