Leon D. Sparkman, Jr., or L.D. Sparkman (1927-2012), as he was commonly called, was an art teacher who worked with the Fort Worth Independent School District. Prior to, or during his teaching position, Sparkman was also a dancer who performed in The Dreams of Jacob as part of the Jacob’s Pillow Dance Festival in 1949. Photographs in a scrapbook from this period of time document Mr. Sparkman’s stay at the dance school as well as the other dance and/or theater shows he performed in. At the Jacob's Pillow School, Sparkman was in the company of several well-known dancers, including Ruth St. Denis, Hugh Laing, Ted Shawn, Swen Swenson, Karoun Tootikian, Tom Two Arrows (Thomas J. Dorsey), the choreographer Antony Tudor and Jocelyn Vollmar. He was also a member of the North Texas State College Modern Dance Group during the 1950s and he served in the Korean War with the Army Air Force.
Sparkman traveled to Arizona, California, Canada, Colorado, Germany, Mexico, New Mexico, North Carolina, Oregon, Philadelphia, San Antonio and Switzerland. Records of his travels, which comprise the bulk of the collection, are in slide format, including glass slides and some stereoscope images. Photographs, which reveal more about the Sparkman family history are also included with images of Sparkman's mother, Lela, his father, Leon Sparkman, Sr., his cousin, Maurine Monk, their friends, Juanita Sanders Owen and E.T. Sanders along with other relatives.