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William P. Bigelow Papers, 1867-1941
1 records storage box (1 linear ft.)

Abstract:
Professor of Music at Amherst. Letters, postcards, photographs, drawings, sheet music, certificates, receipts, passports, manuscripts, music programs, and other materials documenting the professional and personal life of Professor Bigelow and his wife Jane Ball Bigelow.

Terms of Access and Use:

Restrictions on access:

There is no restriction on access to the William P. Bigelow Papers for research use. Particularly fragile items may be restricted for preservation purposes.

Restrictions on use:

Requests for permission to publish material from William P. Bigelow Papers should be directed to the Archives and Special Collections. It is the responsibility of the researcher to identify and satisfy the holders of all copyrights.

Amherst College Archives and Special Collections

Biographical Note

William P. Bigelow, Professor of Music at Amherst College, was a lifetime native of Amherst. Born in 1867, he attended Amherst High School and then Amherst College, graduating in 1889. He showed early musical talent as first tenor in Amherst's Glee Club, and continued to study music from 1889 to 1890 in Worcester under Edward L. Summer and Ivan Morkowski; from 1890 to 1894 in Berlin and Düsseldorf; and in 1898 in Paris and London, eventually learning under Stockhausen, Rest, Hriglia, and Buths. Between 1894 and 1898 he returned to Amherst College and was hired as an instructor; in 1901 he became associate professor and in 1906 a full professor. Returning to Berlin in 1908, he met his soon to be wife, Jane Ball. They were married September 7th, 1909, in Amherst. Their first child, Mary, was born in 1910, and a second daughter Ruth followed in 1912. Among Professor Bigelow's published works are Amherst College Songs, which he compiled and edited in1926. The Bigelow family resided at 2 Orchard Street until 1935. William P. Bigelow died in 1941.

Scope and Contents of the Collection

Letters, postcards, photographs, drawings, sheet music, certificates, receipts, passports, manuscripts, a translation, music programs, posters, speeches, essays, poems, and other materials documenting the professional and personal life of Professor William P. Bigelow and his wife Jane Ball Bigelow. The papers include extensive correspondence between Bigelow and his family, members of the Amherst college faculty, and various admirers, as well as partial memoirs. Letters and papers addressed to the department and administration have some significance, as do some financial and legal records. Correspondents include Mrs. D. D. Eisen, Horace Hewlett, George R. Stewart (manager of the Boston Festival Orchestra), Professor C.K. Adams, Frank Chapman Sharp (AC 1987), Amherst Professor of Latin and Greek Levi Elwell, Mrs. Dwight D. Eisenhower and Arthur Curtis James (AC 1889).


Information on Use
Terms of Access and Use
Restrictions on access:

There is no restriction on access to the William P. Bigelow Papers for research use. Particularly fragile items may be restricted for preservation purposes.

Restrictions on use:

Requests for permission to publish material from William P. Bigelow Papers should be directed to the Archives and Special Collections. It is the responsibility of the researcher to identify and satisfy the holders of all copyrights.

Preferred Citation

Please use the following format when citing materials from this collection:

[Identification of item], in William P. Bigelow Papers [Box #, Folder #], Amherst College Archives and Special Collections, Amherst College Library

History of the Collection

Processing Information
Processed:June 11, 2003
By:Graham Leach-Krouse, Student Encoding Assistant
Finding Aid:2003 June
Prepared by:Graham Leach-Krouse, Student Encoding Assistant
Edited by:Peter A. Nelson, Assistant Archivist
Prepared for Web:2003 June
By:Graham Leach-Krouse 05, Student Encoding Assistant


Additional Information
Contact Information
Amherst College Archives and Special Collections
Robert Frost Library
PO Box 5000
Amherst, MA 01002-5000

Phone: (413) 542-2299
Fax: (413) 542-2692

Email Reference Form: http://www.amherst.edu/library/archives/askus
URL: http://www.amherst.edu/library/archives
Language
English.
Sponsor
Encoding funded by the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation.

Contents List
Series 1: WRITINGS, ca.
1886-1936


Series 1, WRITINGS, ca. 1886-1936, contains manuscripts, speeches, essays, songs, poems and departmental papers written by William P. Bigelow during his lifetime. His speeches and essays revolve mainly around the life of a teacher, and the nature of proper education. Two musical works, "Amherst Songs" and "Oh Bill Bryan," are included. The various poems relate primarily to family life, and the preserved early works, a high school paper, and his master's thesis, are on Bassino from the Merchant of Venice, and the relation of Parsifal to the moral character of Wagner, respectively. The departmental papers are primarily financial records.

Speeches and writings
1921-1922

Box 1: folder 1
Speeches and writings
1936

Box 1: folder 2
Speeches and writings
n.d.

Box 1: folder 3
"Amherst Songs" - notes and fragments
ca. 1926

Box 1: folder 4
"Oh Bill Bryan" - sheet music
ca. 1914

Box 1: folder 5
Poems
1917-1936

Box 1: folder 6
"Character of Bassino" - high school essay
n.d.

Box 1: folder 7
"The Parsifal of Richard Wagner, Its Meaning and Relation to his Life and Character" - M.A. Thesis
1898

Box 1: folder 8
"Art of Conducting" - translation
n.d.

Box 1: folder 9
"Early Days at Amherst" - memoir, partial manuscript
n.d.

Box 1: folder 10
Amherst College Music Department documents (bulk 1919)
ca.1919-1932

Box 1: folder 11
Series 2: LEGAL DOCUMENTS, ca.
1891-1933


Series 2, LEGAL DOCUMENTS, 1891-1933, contains passports, an identity card, a business card stamp, certificates, a copyright, receipts, checks, and financial correspondence. Passports are for William P. Bigelow, Jane Bigelow, and Mary Bigelow. The certificates signify marriage, residency, freemasonry, and membership in the American Defense Society. The copyright is for the song "Oh Bill Bryan," which Bigelow composed ca. 1914.

Identification
1921-1933

Box 1: folder 12
Certificates
1917-1923

Box 1: folder 13
Copyright for "Oh Bill Bryan"
1914

Box 1: folder 14
Finance
1891-1919

Box 1: folder 15
Series 3: IMAGES, ca.
1885-1941


Series 3, IMAGES, ca.1885-1941, contains drawings, as well as loose, mounted, and framed photographs, photocopies, and one photograph album. Extensive portraiture of William P. Bigelow ranges over nearly his entire lifetime. Pictures of Mary and Jane, and miscellaneous images of vacations and the Orchard Street residence are included as well.

Early portrait photographs of William P. Bigelow
ca. 1885-1900

Box 1: folder 16
Later portraits - photographs, photocopies, drawings
ca. 1900-1941

Box 1: folder 17
Family - photograph, mounted photograph, photo album
1912-1937

Box 1: folder 18
Mr. and Mrs. Bigelow - two framed photographs
n.d.

Box 1: folder 19
Assorted - photographs, mounted photos
n.d.

Box 1: folder 20
Series 4: CORRESPONDENCE,
1891-1939


Series 4, CORRESPONDENCE, 1891-1939, contains letters and postcards. The letters deal primarily with William P. Bigelow's personal and performing life, with some communications to the administration and music department of the time, giving evidence of his professional world as well. A few letters belonging to Jane Bigelow are included also.

Incoming correspondence (1 letter)
1899

Box 1: folder 21
Incoming correspondence (4 letters)
1901-1904

Box 1: folder 22
Incoming correspondence (4 letters)
1905-1909

Box 1: folder 23
Incoming correspondence (7 letters)
1912-1915

Box 1: folder 24
Incoming correspondence (2 letters)
1916-1918

Box 1: folder 25
Incoming correspondence (15 letters, 1 telegram)
1919-1923

Box 1: folder 26
Incoming correspondence (13 letters, 1 telegram)
1924-1925

Box 1: folder 27
Incoming correspondence (11 letters)
1926-1929

Box 1: folder 28
Incoming correspondence (7 letters)
1931-1932

Box 1: folder 29
Incoming correspondence (18 letters, 1 telegram)
1933-1935

Box 1: folder 30
Incoming correspondence (3 letters)
1936-1937

Box 1: folder 31
Incoming correspondence (7 letters, x-reference to Arthur Curtis James)
n.d.

Box 1: folder 32
Levi Elwell Correspondence (4 letters, 2 post cards)
1908

Box 1: folder 33
Levi Elwell Correspondence (7 letters)
1909

Box 1: folder 34
Levi Elwell Correspondence (1 letter, 4 post cards)
1910

Box 1: folder 35
Levi Elwell Correspondence (11 letters)
n.d.

Box 1: folder 36
Outgoing correspondence, Berlin (23 letters)
1891

Box 1: folder 37
Outgoing correspondence, Berlin (26 letters
1892

Box 1: folder 38
Outgoing correspondence (7 letters, 1 post card)
1910-1932

Box 1: folder 39
Music departmental correspondence (36 letters, 2 post cards)
1910-1920

Box 1: folder 40
Music departmental correspondence (14 letters, 1 catalog)
1921-1939

Box 1: folder 41
Music departmental correspondence (7 letters, 1 catalog)
n.d.

Box 1: folder 42
Business correspondence - administration (8 letters)
1919-1922

Box 1: folder 43
Business correspondence - administration (3 letters)
1923-1926

Box 1: folder 44
Business correspondence - administration (4 letters)
n.d.

Box 1: folder 45
Business correspondence - job offers (11 letters) [bulk 1895-1899]
1895-1936

Box 1: folder 46
Assorted correspondence - holidays (7 letters, 13 post cards)
n.d.

Box 1: folder 47
Mrs. Bigelow's correspondence (4 letters)
1956-1961

Box 1: folder 48
Series 5: MISCELLANEOUS,
1887-1941


Series 5, MISCELLANEOUS, 1887-1941, contains posters, postcards, announcements and programs. These assorted materials relate to various performances of William P. Bigelow, most notably Amherst's colorful "Old Heidelberg" night. A few other items come from European travel between 1898 and 1922.

Musical
1887-1941

Box 1: folder 49
"Old Heidelberg Night," Amherst College
1933-1935

Box 1: folder 50
Travel
1898-1922

Box 1: folder 51

Search Terms
The following terms represent persons, organizations, and topics documented in this collection. Use these headings to search for additional materials on this web site, in the Five College Library Catalog, or in other library catalogs and databases.

Subjects
  • Amherst College--Faculty.
  • Bigelow, Jane Ball.
  • Bigelow, William P. (William Pingry), b. 1867.
  • Music--Instruction and study--Massachusetts--Amherst.

Contributors
  • Amherst College. Class of 1889. Bigelow.
  • Bigelow, Jane Ball.
  • Elwell, Levi Henry, 1854-1916.


Questions about this collection? Contact the archives
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