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Archival and Manuscript Collections

Music manuscripts, correspondence, and archival collections are available to Northwestern students, faculty, and visiting researchers for on-site examination via the McCormick Library of Special Collections and University Archives. For optimal service, appointments are encouraged prior to using collections. Visit the McCormick Library site or contact them directly at to schedule your appointment.

General manuscript collection

This collection includes more than 1,500 music manuscripts and nearly 1,000 pieces of correspondence from the 14th century to the present.

Our collecting mission focuses on obtaining primary source materials related to:

  • Music composed since 1945, particularly experimental and avant-garde music
  • Works by composers of the late 19th and early 20th centuries

Use NUsearch to locate materials in the General Manuscript collection.

Music-related autographs collection

Contains single letters, manuscripts, photographs and ephemera relating to composers, conductors, performers, musicologists, publishers, librettists and stage directors. Guide to the Music-related autographs collection.

Archival and Manuscript collections by name

Browse finding aids for archival and manuscript collections and more in the Archival and Manuscript Collections database or click the links below to learn more.

Collection Dates
American Music Edition 1920-1997
Beatles Manuscripts (part of Cage's Notations Collection) 1960-1969
Bennett, Robert Russell 1911-1981
Branca, Glenn 1918-2018
Cage, John 1884-1992
Chicago Music Scene Web Archive 2016
Clark, Edward 1888-1962
Corbett, Marion 1915-1972
Costa, Michael  1846-1909
Creshevksy, Noah 1966-2005
di Bonnaventura, Mario 1872-2010
Ferris, William 1952-1998
Giles, John n.d. - 1996
Gomezanda, Antonio 1894-1998
James Rosen Beatles Literature Collection 1962-2016
Johnston, Ben 1939-2003
Kaikhosru Shapurji Sorabji letters 1942-1977
La Violette, Wesley 1913-1978
Lombardo, Robert 1945-2012
Lutkin, Peter Christian 1889 - 1946
Martinon, Jean 1923-1994
Mason, Edith 1910-1974
Meyerowitz, Jan 1935-1980
Mintel, Richard and Judith 1974-2017
Moldenhauer Collection 1683-1973
Moran, Robert 1950-2001
Music-related autographs 1819-2007
New Music Chicago records 1982-1988
Noelte, Albert 1885-1946
Oldberg, Arne 1894-1953
ONCE 1954-2010
Pat Patrick Collection of Sun Ra Materials 1957-1979
Raphling, Sam 1945-2013
Ravel, Maurice 1896-1934
Reiner, Fritz 1888-1967
Ricordi 1810-1959
Saint-Saëns, Camille  1845-1921
Sowerby, Leo 1911-1995
Spencer, William Marvin 1962-1996
Stout, Alan 1961-1975
Wrightson, Elizabeth Augusta 1815-1840