Manuscript Resources on The History of Music, Drama, and Other Performing Arts

This guide describes manuscript resources in the Louisiana and Lower Mississippi Valley Collections that document performing arts history. Most of the collections relate to music, with smaller numbers dealing with theater, and a few dealing with dance. Geographically, most of the collections center around Louisiana, with many reflecting the rich cultural history of New Orleans and its diverse French and American cultural streams. Baton Rouge and other cities and towns are documented to a lesser degree. The cultural life of rural Louisiana is reflected in plantation collections containing sheet music, playbills, and other evidence of cultural activity.

The collections include papers of music and drama teachers, composers and writers, and performers. They also contain papers of those who sat in the audiences of musical and other performances and commented on them in letters and diaries, or compiled collections of programs and other ephemera dealing with the performances they witnessed. Finally, they contain papers of researchers who wrote about music and theater history.

Though extensive, the resources listed in this guide form a small part of the totality of materials documenting performing arts history in LSU's Special Collections. An exhaustive search of available inventories of manuscript collections would turn up additional important documentation. The Rare Book Collections contain a wide variety of relevant imprints, and include an extensive database of uncataloged sheet music. Similarly, the Louisiana Collection contains additional imprints on the performing arts, specifically related to Louisiana and the Lower Mississippi Valley. A folder containing several music history finding aids in addition to this one is available at the Special Collections reference desk.

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Louisiana Music Teachers Association. Papers, 1954-1971. 91 items. Location: E:Imprints, 6:65. Papers of the Louisiana Music Teachers Association include newsletters, questionnaires, and papers pertaining to conventions, membership, and professional activities. For further information, see online catalog. Mss. 2626, 2813.

Referenced in Guides: Performing arts, Education

Madame Butterfly opera scrapbook, circa 1935-1937. 1 volume. Location: T:2. Contains chiefly black and white photographic prints (with some hand-coloring) of the cast of the opera Madame Butterfly (Madama Butterfly), presented by the Louisiana State University (LSU) School of Music from 1935 to 1936. Performers include Virginia Gaines as Madame Butterfly and Marcella Uhl as Suzuki. Additionally, scrapbook contains an advertisement for the School of Music's production of the opera Faust, starring Frances Greer as Marguerite (circa 1937), and two clippings. Mss. 5382.

Referenced in Guides: Performing arts, Women, Baton Rouge, LSU

Mandeville, Henry D. (Henry David) and family. Papers, 1815-1925 (bulk 1854-1883). 2 linear ft. Location: U:214-216. Henry D. Mandeville, originally from Philadelphia, was a factor in trade with China; his son Henry, Jr. was a lawyer in Natchez, Mississippi. Two other sons, Theodore and Ellwyn, served in the Confederate army. Collection includes personal and business correspondence documenting life in Natchez and New Orleans; the operation of Westwood Plantation (owned by Henry, Jr.) in Louisiana; and Civil War papers of Theodore and Ellwyn. Papers also include letters referring to musical performances in Arkansas, Virginia, Natchez, New Orleans, and Chicago; and materials documenting civilian life in New Orleans in the Civil War. Available (with some omissions) on microfilm 5322: University Publications of America Records of Ante-bellum Southern Plantations Series I, Part 3, Reels 3-6. For further information, see online catalog. Mss. 491, 535.

Marino, Samuel Joseph, 1916-. Papers, 1935-1994 (bulk 1935-1946). 0.5 linear ft. Location: B:14. LSU student in the 1930s and member of the Louisiana Kings and Owen Reed and the Playhouse Orchestra swing bands in the late 1930s. Correspondence, printed items, photographs, and other items documenting swing bands and the musical careers of Marino and other band members. Papers also include World War II correspondence of Marino and others; and LSU photographs and ephemera. Also included is onine sheet music for 'Phi Ep Dream Girl' by Walter Schwimmer and a phonographic record of Samuel Marino, vocals, with the Louisiana Kings (1941). For further information, see online catalog. Mss. 2217.

Referenced in Guides: Performing arts, LSU

Marx, Mary Robertson. Collection, 1863-1970, undated. 1,462 items. Location:10:48-49. Resident of Baton Rouge. Clippings of newspaper and magazine articles and other printed items pertain mainly to the Civil War, World War II, and other historical subjects; and to Louisiana history, politics, culture, and social events. For further information, see online catalog. Mss. 2796.

Mather, Mary. Music collection, ca. 1860-1890. 3 vols. Location: H:11. Includes three bound volumes of sheet music for piano, including waltzes, polkas, and popular melodies. Most of the sheet music was printed in New Orleans. For further information, see online catalog. Mss. 4466.

Mayo, William T. Letter, circa 1848. 1 letter. Location: MISC:M. A music publisher in New Orleans. Discusses a steamboat disaster, musicians and music store proprietors in New Orleans, yellow fever in the city, and the presidential election of 1848. Mss. 4985.

McCollam, Andrew and Ellen. Papers, 1839-1867. 3 vols. [typescript copies]. Location: H:1. Andrew McCollam was a surveyor-planter of Ascension and Assumption parishes, Louisiana. Plantation diary (1842-1851) of Ellen McCollam pertains to family life, domestic activities, general plantation matters, and attendance at the theater. Travel diary (1866-1867) of Andrew McCollam contains entries for a trip to Brazil. For further information, see online catalog. Mss. 550.

Referenced in Guides: Plantations, Performing arts, Women

Meyer, Eveleen. Announcement, 1915. 1 item. Location: Misc.:M. Announcement for a song recital in New Orleans, Louisiana. For further information, see onine catalog. Mss. 2525.

Referenced in Guides: Performing arts, New Orleans 1866-

Miller, Frederick F. Letter, ca. 1842. 1 item. Location: Misc. Professor and conductor of music in New Orleans, La. Letter to Miss Rebecca Valentine of Cambridgeport, Massachusetts, commenting on the music situation in New Orleans. For further information, see online catalog. Mss. 895.

Referenced in Guides: New Orleans to 1861, Performing arts