Richard Jay Silverthorn papers
Scope and Contents
The collection includes manuscripts, screenplays, adaptations, research materials, publisher and personal correspondence, handwritten and typed notes, personal and business related financial records, resumes, clippings, awards, photographs, and films created by Richard Jay Silverthorn, 1933-1986. The bulk of the collection consists of his writings, numerous iterations and adaptations of key stories including Campus Faggot, Cookie, and Beelzebub, book one of the "Satan Trilogy." Professional correspondence including publisher and agent letters, entertainment industry information, and financial records of his business with Maynard T. Smith, Simian Word Processing, are included along with family tree research and correspondence, clippings, Jewish and Satanist activity documentation, and healthcare correspondence. Photographs, found loose and within albums, document his personal and professional life from 1970-1986, including the original copy of his family tree.
- 1933 - 1986
- Majority of material found within 1970 - 1986
- Silverthorn, Richard Jay (Creator, Person)
Conditions Governing Access
The collection is open to researchers. The original reels of film in this collection (Series 5) are deposited in conjunction with the Outfest Legacy Project at the UCLA Film & Television Archive. Advance notice is required for researchers wishing to access the films.
Conditions Governing Use
All requests for permission to publish or quote from manuscripts must be submitted in writing to the ONE Archivist. Permission for publication is given on behalf of ONE National Gay and Lesbian Archives at USC Libraries as the owner of the physical items and is not intended to include or imply permission of the copyright holder, which must also be obtained.
Richard Jay Silverthorn was born Marshall Stuart Goldman in Buffalo, New York in 1952. Silverthorn attended the University of Rochester from 1970-1974, graduating with a BA in English. He then moved to Los Angeles to attend the University of Southern California film school, graduating in 1978 with a Master of Fine Arts (Cinema). As a film student, Silverthorn received accolades at the SPREE Awards for his gay films in 1975 (2nd place for Dichotomy) and in 1977 (1st place for Two Faggots and 2nd place for The Tea Room Scene). It was because Marshall Goldman had received attention for his gay films that his mother asked him to change his name. He also won many awards for his final student film, Who is Richard Jay Silverthorn Anyway? in which he played numerous characters as well as created special effects and animation.
Silverthorn wrote manuscripts, screenplays, and various adaptations of his original work and the work of others, notably Ray Bradbury's Frost and Fire and a trilogy based on Frank LaLoggia's 1981 film Fear No Evil which Silverthorn acted in and created the make-up for. Silverthorn ceaselessly wrote and revised while attempting to land production and actor roles as well as book deals. In 1983 he partnered Maynard T. Smith, staff at USC Cinema, to create Simian Word Processing, a business geared toward providing publishing services for graduate students completing their dissertations. He also dabbled in the management of actor Nick Spittelli from 1984-1985. Silverthorn had one book published, Satan’s Spawn (Avon Books, 1988) which was the third book of his "Satan Trilogy" originally titled Lucifer. Remaining in Los Angeles until his death on March 23, 1987 from AIDS-related complications, Silverthorn's last years were spent creating an exhaustive family tree for the descendants of Rabbi David Zisilis.
Source: Richard Jay Silverthorn Papers, Coll2013.069, ONE National Gay & Lesbian Archives, USC Libraries, University of Southern California.
8.5 Linear Feet (4 archive boxes + 6 binder boxes + 4 archive cartons + 1 flat box.)
Language of Materials
Manuscripts, screenplays, adaptations, research materials, publisher and personal correspondence, handwritten and typed notes, personal and business related financial records, resumes, clippings, awards, photographs, and films of Richard Jay Silverthorn, 1933-1986. Born Marshall Stuart Goldman, Silverthorn was a writer, filmmaker, and gay activist.
This collection is arranged in the following series:
Series 1. Writings
Series 2. Professional Work
Series 3. Personal Papers
Series 4. Photographs
Series 5. Audiovisual Materials
Donated by John O'Brien who received the collection from Maynard T. Smith having acquired the collection following Silverthorn's death. Date of acquisition unknown.
The following publications have been separated from the Richard Jay Silverthorn collection and entered into the ONE National Gay & Lesbian Archives' library and periodicals database:
ACLU of Southern California. Gay Rights Guardian (4:11), November 1979.
The Advocate. Issue 281, November 29, 1979.
Jennings, Newt. Truckin' for Chicken. Santee, CA: Surree Limited, Inc., 1976.
Hot Meat Honeymoon, 1 film reel (Super 8).
NOVA News catalogs.
Silverthorn, Richard Jay. Satan's Spawn. New York: Avon Books, 1988.
Formerly boxes 103-333, 103-346 and 103-351. Collection processed by Danielle Perez-Granado, July 2013. Additional materials added by Kyle Morgan, 2015.
- Finding aid to the Richard Jay Silverthorn papers, 1933-1986
- Danielle Perez-Granado
- (c) 2013
- Description rules
- Describing Archives: A Content Standard
- Language of description
- Script of description
- Language of description note
- Description is in English.
- Processing this collection has been funded by a generous grant from the National Historical Publications and Records Commission.