Archives and Manuscripts
- Sarah Adams
Archives and manuscripts constitute the “raw materials” of music history, since the foundation of much humanistic scholarship is based on the interpretation and re-interpretation of primary and secondary sources. Music archival collections and manuscripts may be found both within and outside musical organizations, such as conservatories, academic institutions, libraries, historical societies, museums, businesses, performing arts organizations, research centers, radio and television stations, government archives, and church archives.
This article will cover the single manuscript and paper-based archival traditions in the USA. For media-based archives, see Archives, sound recording and moving image. For details of specific collections see Libraries and collections; for jazz archives see Libraries and archives in GroveJ.
Archives are defined as groups of documents produced by an institution, an organization, an individual, or a family in the course of daily activity, and preserved for enduring value. They are typically kept together as organized bodies of records and are maintained in their original order. The term archive also refers to the repository where archives are located; it is often also used to describe a specialized collection....