The Theatre Museum encourages the use of its collection for research by scholars and by those interested in theatre history. The Museum staff will answer questions on site, over the telephone, by letter or e-mail. The on-site library usage is free; there is a charge usually for just touring the Museum. Staff to assist in research is available when the Theatre Museum is open. Hours for the Museum are 10:00 am – 4:00 pm, Wednesday – Saturday, from Memorial Day through Labor Day. During the rest of the year, the Museum is open by appointment only and one needs to contact the Museum or the office of Midwest Old Threshers at 319-385-9432 several days in advance of a planned visit.


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Use the link below to run keyword searches that lead to some 8,000 catalog records for artifacts in the Theatre Museum. Many of these catalog entries include images.

Link to PastPerfect Database



Upon request the Museum will provide a copy of any play or document for research purpose. Providing the copy does not include nor imply permission to make additional copies nor performance rights. The fee for copying is $0.25 per page. Mailed items will have an additional charge to cover postage and handling. (See paragraphs below on performance rights.)

Upon request the Museum will provide a copy of any photo in our collection for research purposes. Providing the copy does not include or imply permission to make additional copies. The fee for copying is $5 per photograph. The fee for use of any photograph for publication is $25 each. If one wants to display a copy of one of our photographs, that should be discussed with the staff.

Publication of any photograph from the Museum’s collection should be arranged for in advance. Any photograph should be accompanied by the following statement: “Courtesy of the Theatre Museum, Midwest Old Threshers, Mount Pleasant, Iowa.”


When detailed research is required and a visit is not possible, staff will do the research. There may be a charge depending upon the time involved. Contact the library for details.

Performance Rights

If performances of any play in the Museum’s collection are to be given, it is the responsibility of the person or group requesting a copy of a script to clear the copyright or performance permissions. In the event that it is proven that the play is in public domain, the person or group agrees to pay the Museum a performance fee of $20 per performance.

The Museum has acquired the rights to the plays of Neil and Caroline Schaffner, with the exception of Natalie Needs a Nightie and Right Bed, Wrong Husband. Permission for the performance of any plays must be agreed upon in advance. The royalty will be $30 per performance, paid in advance. Performance rights for Natalie Needs a Nightie and Right Bed, Wrong Husband are handled by Samuel French, Inc. of New York City.

The following should be included in any programs for the performance: “Produced with special permission of the Theatre Museum, Midwest Old Threshers, Mount Pleasant, Iowa.”

Location and Hours

The Theatre Museum and the Caroline Schaffner Research Library are located on the grounds of Midwest Old Threshers, 405 Threshers Road, Mount Pleasant, Iowa, 52641.

From Memorial Day to Labor Day, the Museum and Library are open on Tuesday through Sunday, including holidays, from 10:00 am – 12:00 noon and from 12:30pm – 4:30pm. The rest of the year, they are open by appointment only.