• General Collections


    Architectural Drawings Collection

    This collection, spanning the years 1889–2003, consists of drawings from the architects and firms associated with Carnegie Hall, including William B. Tuthill, Kahn & Jacobs (Ely Jacques Kahn & Robert Allan Jacobs), John J. McNamara, and James Stewart Polshek.

    Correspondence and Autographs Collection

    The Correspondence and Autographs Collection consists of more than 200 items, ranging from correspondence about Leonard Bernstein’s appointment to the New York City Symphony WPA Project in 1941 to a letter from Marian Anderson’s voice teacher to a patron regarding her first Carnegie Hall appearance in 1921. There are also letters by Samuel Clemens (whose pen name was Mark Twain), Noel Coward, Franz Liszt, Leopold Stokowski, and others.

    Ephemera and Objects Collection

    The Ephemera and Objects Collection consists of more than 300 items, ranging from a delegate’s button from the First Arbitration and Peace Conference of 1907 to a scarf worn by dancer Isadora Duncan. There are matchbook covers and menus from the Carnegie Hall Tavern, Edison light bulbs from the main auditorium ceiling, and Carnegie Hall–themed sheet music and commemorative postage stamps.

    Manuscripts Collection

    This collection contains music scores, musical quotations, letters, autographs, and calling cards from composers whose music has been performed at Carnegie Hall.

    View finding aid

    Photographs Collection

    The Photograph Collection documents the visual history of Carnegie Hall. Images of the building (including photos from its 1891 construction) and the participants in events that have taken place on the three stages are part of this collection.

    Posters Collection

    The Posters Collection consists of promotional flyers, window cards, and large posters from a variety of Carnegie Hall events dating back to the 1890s. Some were displayed in cases on the exterior of the building; others would have been distributed by hand or by mail.

    Programs Collection

    The Programs Collection documents the performances that have taken place on all three stages of Carnegie Hall, and consists of printed concert programs from 1891 to the present. Some gaps exist in the collection, primarily for the two smaller auditoriums.

    Recordings Collection

    Carnegie Hall’s audio collection consists of recordings of one-time performances by many of the world’s greatest musicians. The collection includes commercial releases, archival study recordings, and radio broadcasts in formats ranging from acetate and vinyl discs to analog and digital audio tape and compact discs.

    Video Collection

    Carnegie Hall’s video collection documents many of Carnegie Hall’s historic events. The collection consists of television broadcasts, commercial releases, documentaries, b-roll footage, newsreel clips, and archival study videos.

    Special Collections

    A wide variety of smaller collections constitute the remainder of the holdings of the Carnegie Hall Archives. These collections range from paintings and drawings by the artists associated with Carnegie Hall, including former tenants and employees; a small collection of batons from some of the world’s most respected conductors, including Leonard Bernstein, Eugene Ormandy, and Arturo Toscanini; a variety of autograph books; a collection of materials related to Isaac Stern, the Carnegie Hall Corporation’s first president; a Tenants and Studios Collection with materials on the Carnegie Hall Studios; and a collection of tickets dating back to the hall’s Opening Night in 1891.

  • Collections and Acquisitions Policy

    In accordance with its mission, the Carnegie Hall Archives actively seeks to identify, acquire, preserve, and make available material that is of enduring informational value and historical significance to Carnegie Hall.

    The Archives serves as the official and permanent repository of historical and inactive records of The Carnegie Hall Corporation. These records include, but are not limited to correspondence, memos, minutes, financial records, contracts, reports, photographs, publications, programs, posters, audiovisual recordings, architectural drawings, and subject files; as well as documents relating to administrative bodies previously associated with it, including Carnegie Hall Incorporated and the Music Hall Company of New York, Limited.

    Access Policy

    The collections of the Carnegie Hall Archives are open for research by appointment to all members of the Carnegie Hall staff and to the general public. The collections do not circulate and, at present, all research must be done on-site under the supervision of the Archives staff. The Carnegie Hall Archives has an ethical obligation to ensure the preservation of these collections, to guarantee the privacy of donors, and to protect items of a legally sensitive or confidential nature; in some cases, sensitive materials are restricted.

    If you would like to access Carnegie Hall Archives’ collections or have questions about its holdings, please contact archives@carnegiehall.org.