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The AMS Archives

Under the direction of AMS Archivist Liza Vick, the archive of historical documents pertaining to the American Musicological Society is housed at the Rare Book & Manuscript Library of the University of Pennsylvania.

Follow this link for an overview of the materials included in the archives.

Three specific collections exist at present. Follow the links for descriptions and detailed indices of the materials.

Ms. Coll. 221: Records, 1934 to 1992 (122 boxes)

This collection comprises the administrative records of the Society, reflecting trends in musicological scholarship and academic training through the course of the twentieth century. Included is correspondence with individuals and institutions related to music research, as well as correspondence among officers of the Society and among committees. Also included are minutes, membership records and directories, records of annual meetings, events and chapters, financial and tax records, and miscellaneous administrative records. Publication series contains substantial correspondence with authors and editorial staff regarding scholarly works, including Tischler’s Earliest Motets, the Works of William Billings, Ockeghem’s Works, and the New Josquin Edition. Administrative correspondents include Presidents Charles Seeger, Curt Sachs, Gustave Reese, Donald Grout, William Mitchell, William S. Newman, Oliver Strunk, Jan LaRue, James Haar, Claude Palisca, Margaret Bent, H. Wiley Hitchcock, Janet Knapp, and Lewis Lockwood; Treasurers Otto Albrecht and Paul Henry Lang; Executive Director Alvin Johnson; Secretary Rita Benton; and Board members Nino Pirrotta, Manfred Bukofzer, Alfred Einstein, Arthur Mendel, and Edward Lowinsky.

Ms. Coll. 645: Supplementary Records, 1950-2003 (66 boxes; bulk: post-1980)

This collection contains correspondence and administrative records supplementing the main collection of records, focusing on the 1980s and 1990s, with detailed records on committee activities and publications. The supplementary records overlap chronologically and should be used in conjunction with Ms. Coll. 221.

Ms. Coll. 222: Records of the Journal of the American Musicological Society, 1931-1995 (60 boxes)

These records primarily consist of correspondence with authors, editorial staff, employees of the William Byrd Press, and officers of the American Musicological Society; copies of many issues of the Journal at various stages in th e publication process; and business records. The most prominent figures in the collection are the editors of the Journal. Oliver Strunk, Donald Grout, Lewis Lockwood, James Haar, Martin Picker, Don Randel, Lawrence Bernstein, Nicholas Temperley, Ellen Rosand, and Richard Kramer are also well represented.

A collection of oral history interviews with AMS members is currently in progress, under the supervision of the AMS Committee on the History of the Society. At present, the following AMS members have been interviewed:

  • Elizabeth Bartlet
  • Claire Brook
  • Raoul Camus
  • Isabelle Cazeaux
  • Richard Crawford
  • Richard Crocker
  • Philip Gossett
  • James Haar
  • Charles Hamm
  • Daniel Heartz
  • John Walter Hill
  • H. Wiley Hitchcock
  • Alvin H. Johnson
  • Joseph Kerman
  • Janet Knapp
  • Jan LaRue
  • Siegmund Levarie
  • Herbert Livingstone
  • Lewis Lockwood
  • Maria Maniates
  • Alfred Mann
  • Leonard Meyer
  • Bruno Nettl
  • William Newman
  • Harvey Olnick
  • Claude V. Palisca
  • Don Randel
  • Ellen Rosand
  • Elaine Sisman
  • H. Colin Slim
  • Howard Smither
  • Ruth Solie
  • Robert Stevenson
  • Leo Treitler
  • Hans Tischler
  • Bonnie Wade
  • James Webster
  • Neal Zaslaw

Transcriptions and recordings have been prepared for many of these interviews.

If you would like to participate in the AMS Oral History project, please drop Bob Judd a note.

To utilize materials held in the AMS Archives, please contact the AMS office.