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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Beauregard House Association program, 1932. 1 item. Location: E:Imprints. Program for the play 'An Old Romance' by Grace King, presented by the New Orleans Beauregard House Association. For further information, see online catalog. Mss. 1834.

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

Beauregard-Keyes House program, 1932. 1 program, 3 pages, 23 centimeters. Location: EPHEMERA COLLECTION SUBGROUP VI. Program for presentations of Grace King's 3-act play "An Old Romance" at the Beauregard House in New Orleans, Oct. 24-26, 1932. Mss. 1834.

Referenced in Guides: Performing arts, Literature

Blind Tom letter, 1867. 1 item. Location: Misc.B. Letter from a guest at Trenton House [Trenton, New Jersey], commenting on the artistic ability and physical characteristics of the blind African-American musician 'Blind Tom,' after attending a concert given by the pianist. For further information, see online catalog. Mss. 1533.

Referenced in Guides: Performing arts, African Americans

Boland, Rose Mary Shields. Scrapbook, 1906-1940. 1 vol. [on microfilm] Location:Mss. Mf.:B. Child actress and member of New Orleans theatrical family. Scrapbook contains newspaper clippings, photographs, and miscellaneous items, largely concerning her career as a child actress with the Brown-Baker Stock Company. For further information, see online catalog. Mss. 2595.

Referenced in Guides: Performing arts, Women, New Orleans 1866-

Boston Museum (1847-1903). Playbill, 1861. 1 broadside. Location: E:Imprints. Abolitionist playbill reading: First nights of Dion Bourcicault's greatest production! Illustrating American character! American scenes! and Southern homes! entitled the Octoroon or--life in Louisiana, ...this Saturday afternoon, Dec. 14, 1861. For further information, see online catalog. Mss. 1558.

Brass Band. Photographs, circa 1900. 2 copy prints. Location: E:66. Copy prints of the Natchitoches and Eclipse Brass Bands. Part of the Picture Collection. For further information, see online catalog. Mss. 2961.

Referenced in Guides: Performing arts

Brazilian Newspapers: the DeForest collection, 1822-1828. 95 items. Location: 77:98. Collection of Brazilian newspapers and fliers, broadsides, and pamphlets, dating from the time of independence. Collection includes printed advertisements, an announcement for A FLAUTA MAGICA, and other items. For further information, see online catalog. Mss. 3074.

Referenced in Guides: New Orleans to 1861, Performing arts

Brooks Read Brer Rabbit Collection, 1950-1991 (bulk: 1950-1959). Ca. 29 linear feet. Approximately 500 reel to reel audio recordings, scripts, phonographs, correspondence, and subject files of Brooks Read, Baton Rouge storyteller, journalist, and political observer. Materials relate to Read's recorded productions of his original Brer Rabbit stories, as well as a few select Uncle Remus stories of Joel Chandler Harris. For further information, see online catalog. Mss. 4476.

Butler family. Papers, 1663-1950 (bulk 1813-1915). 16.5 linear ft. Location: S:2-S:8, OS:B, 65:, Vault:2. Cotton and sugar planters in West Feliciana Parish, Louisiana. Papers include letters, personal papers, financial and legal documents, photographs, and printed items. Papers discuss the Civil War; plantation life; Thomas Butler's judicial and political career; and antebellum life in the Gulf South states. Included is correspondence from prominent Louisiana residents and others. Letters from Anna Butler who lived in the White House (1849-1850) Collection also contains manuscript and published music, including the music of John Thuer.. Available on microfilm 5322: University Publications of America Records of Ante-bellum Southern Plantations Series I, Part 5, Reels 13-27. For further information, see online catalog. Mss. 893, 965, 1026, 1076, 1217, 1240, 1309, 1353, 1381, 1640, 1649, 1913, 1938.

Butler, Robert, 1786-1860. Papers, 1831-1853. .15 linear ft. Location: S:24, Misc:B. Surveyor general of Florida and a colonel in the U.S. Army; brother of Louisiana judge Thomas Butler. Holographic poems, most signed and dated by Butler and most written at Lake Jackson, Tallahassee, Florida. Many of the poems were adapted to the music of contemporary songs and hymns. One group of poems comments on the 1845 presidential election of James K. Polk and George M. Dallas and eulogizes Andrew Jackson. A promissory note (1831) is for the hire of three slaves. For further information, see online catalog. Mss. 1000, 3112.

Referenced in Guides: Politics, Performing arts, Literature

Cale, John G. (John Gustav), 1922-. Papers, 1966-1968. 98 items, 1 vol., on microfilm. Location: Mss. Mf.:C. Thematic index cards and bound typewritten seminar paper list titles of manuscript and printed music of Henri and Joseph Amedee Fourrier in the LSU Library and the Baton Rouge School for the Blind. For further information, see online catalog. Mss. 2304.

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

Cale, John G. (John Gustav), 1922-. Abstract, 1967. 1 item. Location: Misc.:C. Genealogical data on the Henri Fourrier family of Baton Rouge taken from a paper by Cale, which he gave at an American Musicological Society meeting in New Orleans. For further information, see online catalog. Mss. 2304.

Cameron, Giulia Valda. Letters, 1891. 3 items. Location: Misc. Concert singer. Letters by Alfred Mapleson, of A. Mapleson and C. Siecinoski's Operatic and Concert Agency, London, apparently an agent for Giulia Valda Cameron. For further information, see online catalog. Mss. 1541.

Referenced in Guides: Performing arts, Women

Campbell, Zoe J. Diaries, 1856-1866. 5 items; 10 volumes. Location: P:1, Misc:C. Available on microfilm 5750: University Publications of America Southern Women and Their Families in the 19th Century: Papers and Diaries Series E, Reels 4-5. Resident of New Orleans; daughter of James and Zoe Lambert Campbell and sister of Lambert Campbell, a Confederate soldier in the Civil War. Dairies document expenses, condolence visits, and piano lessons. Beginning in May 1861, they deal with the Civil War, including events in occupied New Orleans. Papers also include a funeral announcement for Campbell and a personal letter. In French. For further information, see online catalog. Mss. 1274.

Carriere, Oliver P. Correspondence, 1973-1979. 57 letters. Location: Misc. Judge Oliver P. Carriere was a New Orleans jurist whose hobby--the study and play of the game of poker--was translated into one of the largest and most comprehensive collections on that subject in existence. This correspondence between Carriere and Dr. Don Black, a pediatrician in Paris, Tex., concerns the collecting of literature on poker. Mss. 3957.

Referenced in Guides: Performing arts

Carver, George Washington, 1864?-1943. Letter: to Harry Ittner, 1933 March 8. 1 item. Location: Vault. African American educator and agricultural scientist, and director of the Research and Experiment Station at Tuskegee Institute, Alabama. Letter by Carver to Ittner discusses Ittner's studies at Antioch College (Ohio), and comments on Carver's interests in music, motion pictures, and theater. For further information, see online catalog. Mss. 3412.

Cavalleria rusticana opera scrapbook, circa 1936-1937. 1 volume. Location: T:98. Contains a program for the opera Cavalleria rusticana and a recital of modern dance, performed during the 1936-1937 Louisiana State University Opera Season by the School of Music and the Dance Center, sponsored by The Baton Rouge Grand Opera Association. Scrapbook also contains black and white photographic prints (portraits) of the opera's cast, including Marcella Uhl as Lola. Mss. 5380.

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

Chol, Emmanuel, 1834-1916. Papers, 1845, 1854-1921. 1,213 items, 6 ms. vols., 31 printed vols. Location: U:163-164, 65:29, 98:. Native of France, music teacher and composer of Thibodaux, Lafourche Parish, Louisiana. Bills and receipts, manuscript and sheet music, pamphlets, and other imprints reflect Chol's professional career, his affiliation with the Catholic Church, and the education of his children in parochial schools. Partly in French. For further information, see online catalog. Mss. 1780, 1906.

Cior, Charles, 1819-ca. 1894. La musique, selon les sciences observes. L'histoire, la phylosophie, la physiologie, etc., etc., entendre, comprendre, se souvenir, 1885. 2 ms. vols. Location: H:20. Music teacher of New Orleans and native of Paris, France. Pedagogical manuscript containing lessons on music theory, exercises, and diagrams. In French. For further information, see online catalog. Mss. 3287.

Referenced in Guides: Performing arts, New Orleans 1866-, French

Coates, Charles E. and Ollie Maurin. Family Papers, 1862-1980 (bulk 1937-1972). 17.5 linear ft. Location: 12:15-23, OS:C. LSU professor of Chemistry. Correspondence, printed items, photographs, and writings of Charles Coates; and papers documenting Charles Coates and Ollie Coates involvement in Baton Rouge theater and pageantry. For further information, see online catalog. Mss. 3579.

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

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