Answer: Frank McGlinn
Frank Cresson Potts McGlinn (1914-2000) was born in Philadelphia. He was a graduate of William Penn Charter School and received degrees from the University of North Carolina and the University of Pennsylvania Law School. During World War II, he served as a naval officer on a minesweeper and was awarded the Purple Heart in 1944. While on leave in 1942, he married Louise “Wegie” Lea. The couple had four daughters and enjoyed fifty-seven years of marriage. After the war, McGlinn held positions with a variety of firms, including Pepper, Hamilton, and Scheetz , Fidelity Bank, and the Western Savings Fund Society.
McGlinn developed two great passions in life outside of his career: he was a prominent local supporter of the Republican Party, and he loved the theatre. He served on the executive committee of the Republican National finance committee for a number of years, and he was offered several appointed positions or opportunities to run for office. McGlinn turned down all offers, content to fill a role behind the scenes and spend more time with his family. He was active in various community organizations, but especially those associated with theatres throughout Southeastern Pennsylvania.
McGlinn’s life-long love of the theater began at a young age with seeing The Green Goddess at the Walnut Street Theatre. In school he had acted in a number of plays but, due to a speech impediment, gave up his stage ambitions to earn degrees in political science and law. He channeled his passion into becoming a theater supporter and memorabilia collector. Over the years he donated large portions of his collection to the Free Library, Temple University, and the African American Museum in Philadelphia, among other institutions.
The Frank McGlinn collection at HSP (#3314) contains his personal collection of theater and performing arts ephemera, as well as substantial material pertaining to his Republican fund-raising and philanthropic activities. Items include programs, handbills, broadsides, posters, letters, invitations, mailings, and clippings.