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Finding aid of the Rick Sandford Writings

Finding aid prepared by Michael C. Oliveira, © 2008

Summary Information

ONE National Gay & Lesbian Archives, USC Libraries, University of Southern California
Sandford, Rick, 1951-1995
Rick Sandford writings
Collection no.
Date [bulk]
Bulk, 1970-1990
Date [inclusive]
13.6 linear feet.
General Physical Description note
10 records boxes, 1 archive half-carton, and 1 oversize box
Journals, short stories, plays, screenplays, comparative literature, poetry, and annual compendia of literature read, motion pictures seen, and theatrical performances attended by Rick Sandford, 1963-1995. Sandford documented his early life in Tahoe 1958-1969, as a "born again" Christian 1971-1972, and life in Los Angeles 1973-1980, and 1989-1994 in typescript journals. Working in various positions from an usher to a television stand-in Sandford documents life in Los Angeles and his love of reading, motion pictures, and theater.

Preferred Citation

Box #, folder #, Rick Sandford writings, Coll2009-001, ONE National Gay and Lesbian Archives, Los Angeles, California.

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Rick Sandford was born December 31, 1950, in Denver, Colorado, and grew up in the Lake Tahoe area. His early difficulties learning to read led his parents to enroll him in a private school, Peter Pan. At the school he learned how to overcome his difficulties and would later consider reading as a primary component of his happiness. Sandford at some point created typescripts of original documents including his mother's correspondence in 1951. His early personal journal entries date to 1958 and were short and sporadic, however his later entries were longer and more frequent. The journal entries include copies of his correspondence and writings, and traditional journal entries concerning his life. His journals also document his appreciation of motion pictures, another life-long passion. After his graduation in 1969, he came to Los Angeles to see the musical, Hair and the Russian motion picture version of  War and Peace. After 1972, Sandford remained in Los Angeles employed in various positions, from an usher at Grauman's Chinese Theatre to a television show stand-in. He received credit as a "research assistant" on  50 Golden Years of Oscar: the Official History of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts & Sciences and Ronald Haver's  David O. Selznick's Hollywood. Along the way Sandford appeared on television shows and in motion pictures as an extra and in a few bit parts. During the late 1970s and early 1980s he worked as an editor on 3 gay erotic films and appeared as Benjamin Barker or Ben Barker in 13 gay erotic motion pictures including  Kip Noll and the Westside Boys,  Rear Deliveries,  Skin Deep,  The Class of '84 Part 2  Jocks,  Gold Rush Boys,  The Boys of San Francisco,  A Night at Halsted's, and  Games. In the mid 1980s, Don Bachardy sketched Sandford for his book,  Drawing of the Male Nude. He also served as an assistant on the 1990 documentary Hollywood Mavericks. In 1991, his short story "Forster & Rosenthal Reevaluated: An Investigative Report" was published in the anthology,  Indivisible: New Short Fiction by Gay and Lesbian West Coast Writers. In 1994, another of his short stories, "Purim" was published in  Blood Whispers: L.A. Writers on AIDS, Volume 2. He died of AIDS during the evening of September 28, 1995. Two more of Sandford's short stories were published posthumously, "The Gospel Of Bartholemew Legate: Three Fragments" in  His 2: Brilliant New Fiction by Gay Writers and"Manifest White" in  His 3: Brilliant New Fiction by Gay Writers. In 2000, his novel,  Boys Across the Street was published.

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Scope and Content of Collection

The Rick Sandford collection includes typescripts of his journal; the journals document his correspondence to friends, important documents such as medical records and tax returns, along with his writings and traditional journal entries. The collection also includes drafts as well as final drafts of comparative literature works, short stories, a novel, plays, screenplays, and poetry. A few of his works were published during his life most were published posthumously. The correspondence, not included in his journals, and biographical information are located in the Personal Series. The final series, Cultural Compendia consists of his lists of motion pictures screened, cultural events attended, and books read along with his selection of the best for each year, 1980-1994. The series also contains lists and reference materials concerning theater, literature, and motion pictures..

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The collection is divided into 4 series: Journals, Writings, Personal, and Cultural Compendia and the associated subseries. Series 2: Writings is divided into four subseries: Comparative Literature, Novels and Short Stories, Plays and Screenplays, and Poetry. Series 3: Personal is divided into two subseries: Correspondence and Biographical. Series 4: Cultural Compendia is divided into 5 subseries: Cultural Compendia, Literature Lists, Theater Lists, Motion Picture Lists, and Reference Materials.

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Administrative Information

Publication Information

ONE National Gay & Lesbian Archives, USC Libraries, University of Southern California
© 2008
909 West Adams Boulevard
Los Angeles, California, 90007
(213) 821-2771


The collection is open to researchers. There are no access restrictions.

Publication Rights

Researchers wishing to publish materials must obtain permission in writing from ONE National Gay and Lesbian Archives as the physical owner. Researchers must also obtain clearance from the holder(s) of any copyrights in the materials. Note that ONE National Gay and Lesbian Archives can grant copyright clearance only for those materials for which we hold the copyright. It is the responsibility of the researcher to obtain copyright clearance for all other materials directly from the copyright holder(s).

Acquisition Information

Method and date of acquisition unknown.

Processing Information

Formerly boxed in 103-044, 103-068, 103-093, 103-095, 103-104, 103-109, 103-129, 104-149, 104-150, 104-151, 104-152, and 104-159.Collection processed by Greg Williams, Sócrates Silva, Richard French, and Michael C. Oliveira, 2005-January 2009.

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Controlled Access Headings


  • Academy Awards (Motion pictures)
  • Diaries
  • Gay men--Fiction
  • Gays' writings, American
  • Motion pictures--Evaluation
  • Short stories, American--Pacific Coast (U.S.)

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Collection Inventory

Series 1:  Series 1: Journals 1951 1994   58.0 folders.

Series Scope and Content

The 1951 journal entries are typescripts of correspondence to his mother. From 1958-1980 and 1989-1994, Sandford's journals are primarily typescripts of traditional journal entries along with originals or copies of most everything that he received or sent. The list documents include: California sample ballot booklets, clippings, copies of mailed and unmailed correspondence, lists of expenses, personal and publicity photographs, plot outlines from his film appearances, photocopies of postcards sent, promotional materials, photocopies of psychological surveys from the Los Angeles Men's Study (LAMS), photocopies of tax returns, and copies of his writings. Most of the documents are annotated with pertinent information.

Box Folder

 1951, 1958-1965 1951 1958-1965 

1 1

 1966-1969 1966-1969 

1 2-4

 1970 1970 

1 5-6

 1971 1971 

1 7-9

 1972 1972 

1 10-15

 1974 1974 

1 19

 1973 1973 

1 16-18

 1975 1975 

1 20-23

 1976 1976 

1 24-27

 1977 1977 

1 28

 1978 1978 

1 29-30

 1979 1979 

2 1-3

 1980 1980 

2 4-7

 1985 Stenopad 1985 

2 8

 1989 1989 

2 9-11

 1990 1990 

2 12-13

 1991 1991 

2 14-16

 1992 1992 

2 17-19

 1993 1993 

2 20-23

 1993 1993 

3 1

 1994 1994 

3 2-5

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Series 2:  Series 2: Writings 1959-1994   60.0 folders.

Series Scope and Content

The writing series is divided into four subseries: Comparative Literature, Novel and Short Stories, Plays and Screenplays, and Poetry. The works of each series are arranged alphabetically with the exception of multiple and untitled works which begin the Novel and Short Stories, Plays and Screenplays, and Poetry subseries. Re-titled works were brought together and arranged under what appears to the last title. The works are primarily by Sandford with a few collaborative stories and screenplays with Josh Becker or Stacey Foiles.

 Subseries 2.1: Comparative Literature 1959-1993   4.0 folders.

Subseries Scope and Content

Sandford made a goal of reading the original works adapted to become Oscar nominated motion pictures. For Lawrence of Arabia, the collection contains Sandford's typescript notes and the research materials he used to compare works concerning and by T. E. Lawrence to the motion picture adaptation. In the second comparative work, Sanford brings together verses from different books of the Bible and quotations of Isaac Asimov for his  Bartholomew's Gospel. The folder also includes a list of comparative passages from the four Gospels, passages from other books of the Bible, and other miscellaneous quotations, along with Sandford's  The First Part of the Last Supper (in the style of the 1611 King James version of the Bible).

Box Folder

 Bartholomew's Gospel 1993 

3 6

 Lawrence of Arabia 1989 

3 7-9
Box Folder

 Notes on Adaptation 1989 

3 7

 Research materials 1959-1989 

3 8-9

 Subseries 2.2: Novels and Short Stories 1962-1994   29.0 folders.

Subseries Scope and Content

The subseries contains only one novel, Boys Across the Street, which was published posthumously in 2000. The writings in this subseries are arranged alphabetically with two exceptions, folders of multiple short stories found together during processing and related stories. The related stories and research materials are grouped under Sandford's published title. Several typescripts and related research information are group under the heading of the published work,  Forster and Rosenthal Reevaluated: An Investigation. The folder of the posthumously published short story, Manifest: White also contains the revised original work,  Fucking White.

 Multiple Short Stories 1962-1993   5.0 folders.

Box Folder

 Miscellaneous early writings 1962-1972 

3 10

 Short Stories 1963-1979 

3 11

 Isaac and Moshe,  Sightings,  Manifest: White, and Comparative Quotations 1990 

3 12

 Isaac and Moshe,  Rocks and Coconuts,  Yeshiva Boy,  Moshe and Me circa 1993 

3 13

 The Place of Sunlight,  Sergeant Halley 1967-1982 

3 14

 Short Stories and Novel 1967-1994   25.0 folders.

Box Folder

 The Beautiful Football Player 1970 

3 15

 Boys Across the Street (novel) 1993 

3 16-18

 December 1994: Intimations of Morality 1994 

3 19

 Don Juan's Reckless Daughter and Other Writings undated 

3 20

 Emotion Through Fantasy 1971 

3 21

 Forster and Rosenthal Reevaluated: An Investigation 1979-1991   10.0 folders.

3 22-31
Box Folder

 Photocopy of published work 1991 

3 22

 Drafts 1990 

3 23-25

 Notes and corrections 1990 

3 26

 Mann and Thalberg Reevaluated: An Investigative Report undated 

3 27

 Drafts 1979-1988 

3 28-30

 Auschwitz: Personal Ethics undated 

3 31

 God's Stacy 1967 

3 32

 Isaac and Moshe circa 1993 

3 33

 Levi 1994 

4 1

 Manifest: White /  Fucking White 1989 

4 2

 My Earthquake Story 1994 

4 3

 Rick and Thelma 1980 

4 4

 Sweet Nothings 1968 

4 5

 Twenty-Nine, Thirty ... (in journal form) 1980 

4 6

 Subseries 2.3: Plays and Screenplays 1968-1993   25.0 folders.

Subseries Scope and Content

The writings of the Play and Screenplays subseries are arranged alphabetically by title, with the exceptions of folders of miscellaneous and untitled works. The re-titled screenplays Brothers and Sisters and Yesterday are filed under the revised title, Tahoe. Sandford and Foiles revised this screenplay several times changing the title and character names. The revised title, Yesterday appears to be very similar to last revised screenplay titled Tahoe. The subseries also contains North Platte, Nebraska tourist information that was found with the Teenagers Die Screaming screenplays.

Box Folder

 Miscellaneous short plays and screenplays 1970-1976 

4 29

 Untitled screenplay (erotic) Undated 

4 30

 Above the Line, screenplay by Josh Becker, story by Josh Becker and Rick Sandford 1988 

4 7-8

 Boo!, script Undated 

4 9

 Boys Across the Street, play drafts 1993 

4 10-13

 Growing Up in Tahoe, screenplay 1975 

4 14

 Orthodox and Otherwise, play 1993 

4 15

 Paulson, screenplay Undated 

4 16

 The Screenplay Undated 

12 1

 Tahoe by Stacey Foiles and Rick Sanford 1968-1980s   7.0 folders.

4 17-22, 28
Box Folder

 Screenplay Undated 

4 17

 Screenplay 1980s 

4 18-19

 Screenplay 1968 

4 20

 Brothers and Sisters  Tahoe undated 

4 21-22

 Yesterday by Stacey Foiles and Rick Sandford undated 

4 28

 Teenagers Die Screaming circa 1989   5.0 folders.

Box Folder

 Screenplay by Rick Sandford and Stacey Foiles undated 

4 23

 Screenplay by Rick Sandford and Stacey Foiles undated 

4 25-27

 North Platte, Nebraska tourism information 1989 

4 24

 Subseries 2.4: Poetry 1967-circa 1981   2.0 folders.

Subseries Scope and Content

The subseries consists of two early folders of Sandford's poetry including a handwritten anthology and a folder of miscellaneous unsorted poetry, 1967-1981.

Box Folder

 Miscellaneous poetry 1970-1976 

4 31

 The Poetry of Rick Sandford Undated 

4 32

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Series 3:  Series 3: Personal 1967-1999   47.0 folders.

Series Scope and Content

The Personal Series consists of two chronologically arranged subseries, Correspondence and Biographical Subseries. Sandford's correspondence files contain published letters to editors, reference materials and clippings, 1967-1995. The biographical files contain files related to his life and professional careers, including appointment/address books, photographs, friend's remembrances, along with promotional materials and scripts for television and erotic motion pictures in which he appeared.

 Subseries 3.1: Correspondence 1967-1995   24.0 folders.

Series Scope and Content

The Correspondence Subseries consists of letters, clippings and other documents organized by correspondent or subject. The folder, Sanford and Rabbi Chaim Chabad conflict, may be related to the Jewish laws, the California penal code folder which follows the conflict folder. The undated Alan Howard screenplay, September Song folder was placed according to the first year his Howard's name appeared in Sandford's address books, 1985.

Box Folder

 Stephanie Wood and miscellaneous 1967-1968 , 1972 , 1993 

4 33

 Tony Richardson clippings, correspondence, and photograph 1967-1994 

12 5

 Alan Howard, September Song screenplay Undated 

11 4

 Phil Trevor, correspondence 1971-1975 , 1993 

4 34

 Dan Redding, correspondence 1972 , 1985 

12 2

 Our Town, flyer and correspondence 1975 

4 35

 William Tepper, correspondence 1976-1978 

12 6

 Mark Valen, correspondence 1977-1985 

4 36

 Mark Valen poster, monthly cinema calendar 1985 

12 7

 Miscellaneous clippings, correspondence, and book receipts 1978-1992 

4 37

 Clippings, poster, miscellaneous 1980-1995 

12 8

 James Prideaux, appointment book 1981 

11 3

 Skinflicks and  Advocate Classified clippings 1983 , 1994 

4 38

 Clippings, writings, medical records 1989 

4 39

 Charles Winecoff, correspondence 1989-1992 

4 40

 Letter to Editors and President Clinton 1991-1995 

12 9

 Sandford responds to essay "Rights" or Ills 1993 

5 1

 David Bergman, correspondence 1993 

5 2

 Peter Casherali, A Bouquet from a Field of Reading: A Reading List of 66 Books Read in 1992 with Awards for Excellence 1993 

5 3

 Distribution of wealth, Jews as Victims, and drug decriminalization; clippings 1993 

12 3

 Sanford and Rabbi Chaim Chabad conflict, notes and correspondence 1994 

5 4

 Jewish law, the California penal code; book sections and clippings 1981-1993 

5 5

 Miscellaneous 1994-1995 

12 4

 Thelma R. Wallack, correspondence 1995 

5 6

 Subseries 3.2: Biographical 1975-1999   23.0 folders.

Subseries Scope and Content

The Biographical Subseries includes documents such as a resume, photographs, obituary, and remembrances from a friend. Additional materials include posters, flyers, and advertising for an erotic film, Kip Noll and The Westside Boys in which Sandford performed. He attempted to create a book of days for his life and other significant historical events, however most of the pages are blank. The bulk of the subseries contains Sandford's pocket appointment/address books, which list his daily activities. The three remaining folder contain scripts of television episodes and erotic films, in which Sandford appeared.

Box Folder

 Resume, photographs, obituary, remembrances circa 1976 1995-1999 

5 7

 Kip Noll and The Westside Boys promotional materials 1980 

12 10

 Book of days circa 1985 

5 8-10

 Appointment/address books 1975-1994 

5 11-25

 Scripts 1976-1989   3.0 folders.

5 26-28
Box Folder

 Police Woman, "  Task Force: Cop Killer" episode television script 1976 

5 26

 Pacific Coast Highway and  The Class of '84 (part 2) screenplays 1981 

5 27

 The Hogan Family, "  Private Lives" episode television script 1989 

5 28

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Series 4:  Series 4: Cultural Compendia 1963-1995   113.0 folders.

Series Scope and Content

The series includes the source materials and copies of Sandford's annual Cultural Compendia, lists of books read, cultural events attended, and his selection of the best of the year. The sources materials consist of his manuscript and typescript lists of books, theater, and motion pictures. The source materials are divided into five subseries Cultural Compendia, Literary, Theater, Motion Pictures, and Reference Materials. The Motion Picture subseries includes spiral bound notebooks primarily consisting of motion picture lists, however a few notebooks contain book and theater lists. The last subseries contains reference materials from the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences and motion picture studios.

 Subseries 4.1: Cultural Compendia 1981-1995   20.0 folders.

Subseries Scope and Content

Sandford summarized the lists of book he read and cultural events he attended in an annual Cultural Compendium. Each compendium also included his selection of the best books, theater performances, and motion pictures of the year. The subseries includes a photocopy, typescript, and draft of the 1983 Cultural Compendium. Sandford used as a frontispiece a different publicity still from  Baby It's You in each of three photocopies of his 1983 compendium. All the publicity stills were retained while the multiple photocopies of the 1983 compendium were removed from the collection.

Box Folder

 A Cultural Compendium 1980 1981 

5 29

 A Cultural Compendium 1981 1982 

5 30

 A Cultural Compendium 1982 circa 1983 

5 31-32

 A Cultural Compendium 1983 1984 

6 1-3

 A Cultural Compendium 1984 circa 1985 

6 4

 A Cultural Compendium 1985 1986 

6 5

 A Cultural Compendium 1986 circa 1987 

6 6

 A Cultural Compendium 1987 circa 1988 

6 7

 A Cultural Compendium 1988 circa 1989 

6 8

 A Cultural Compendium 1989 circa 1990 

6 9

 A Cultural Compendium 1990 or The Emasculation of Acceptance 1991 

6 10

 A Cultural Compendium 1991 or Tentative Working Assumptions circa 1992 

6 11

 A Cultural Compendium 1992 1994 

6 12

 A Cultural Compendium 1993 or What a Man Values ... 1994 

6 13

 A Cultural Compendium 1994 or Rough Mosaic 1995 

6 14-16

 Subseries 4.2: Literature Lists 1989-1994   9.0 folders.

Subseries Scope and Content

The subseries consists of typescripts of Sandford's A Literary Checklist, a compilation of various recommended reading lists, lists of various award-winning books, and book excerpts. The series also includes Sandford's handwritten list of books read, organized by the book's publication or copyright date.

Box Folder

 A Literary Checklist 1989-1994 

6 17-20

 Book lists by book awards, 1973-1992 1992 

6 21-23

 Book lists by publication/copyright date, 1973-1994 circa 1994 

    Box Folder Folder
Mixed Materials   6 24 ; 7 1

 Subseries 4.3: Theater Lists 1977/1995   4.0 folders.

Subseries Scope and Content

The bulk of the subseries consists of chronological lists of the Antoinette Perry Awards for Excellence in Theatre (Tony Awards) nominations through 1995. The subseries also contains unorganized manuscripts and typescript lists of theater performances attended by Sandford, most likely transcribed in the 1970s.

Box Folder

 Antoinette Perry Awards for Excellence in Theatre (Tony Awards), 1947-1995 1977-1995 

7 2-4

 Theater performances by year, 1968-1979 circa 1979 

7 5

 Subseries 4.4: Motion Picture Lists 1963-1995   61.0 folders.

Series Scope and Content

The subseries includes typescript lists of Sandford's annual choices of the best and worst motion pictures compiled from his handwritten lists. Sandford recorded chronological lists of motion pictures by date or year watched or year nominated for an award. He assembled these lists from spiral bound notebooks that recorded all the cultural events he attended in a calendar year. Sandford also transcribed lists of nominated and award winning films from various organizations such as the press, film festivals, and foreign academies.

Box Folder

 Sandford's motion picture awards, 1963-1993 1993 

7 6-7

 Sandford's motion pictures watched, 1963-1988 1988 

7 8-11

 An Adjunct to the Academy Awards 1979 

7 12-14

 Sandford's motion picture reviews, 1972-1978 1972-1978 

7 15

 Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences Awards (Oscar) eligible, nominations, and winners, 1927-1994 1994 

7 16-18

 Foreign academies awards nominations and winners, 1931-1985 1985 

7 19-20

 Other motion picture awards, 1920-1993 1993 

7 21-24

 Chronological lists of motion pictures, 1895-1994 1994 

8 1-7

 Chronological lists of Academy Award nominations and winners, 1928-1994 1993 

10 4-5

 Chronological lists of motion pictures watched, 1973-1995 1995 

8 8-11

 Spiral bound notebooks annual lists 1963-1979 

8 12-24

 Spiral bound notebooks annual lists 1980 

9 1-13

 Spiral bound notebooks annual lists 1993-1995 

10 1-3

 Subseries 4.5: Reference Materials 1922-1994   19.0 folders.

Subseries Scope and Content

The subseries includes reference materials from the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences such as lists of nominations and award winners, nominations press releases, and reminder lists of eligible motion pictures. The Studio reference materials include a few studio biographies and production notes for films released in 1981, along with a list of MGM films released between 1962-1981.

Box Folder

 Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences (AMPAS) Reference Materials 1965-1994   15.0 folders.

10 6-20
Box Folder

 Academy Award nominations and winners, 1927-1982 1982 

10 6-7

 Nominations press releases 1993 

10 8-10

 Reminder List of Eligible Releases booklets 1965-1994 

10 11-14

 Reminder List of Eligible Releases photocopies 1922-1990 

10 15-20

 Studio reference materials 1981 , 1991   2.0 folders.

11 1-2
Box Folder

 Studio motion picture biographies and production notes 1991 

11 1

 Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer Film Company Feature Film Titles, 1962-Present 1981 

11 2

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