Lilly Library Manuscript Collections


The Gellert mss., 1927-1978, consist of the correspondence and writings of Lawrence Gellert, 1898-1979, composer and author of negro songs of protest.

The correspondence, ranging from 1934 to 1978 (lacking the period of the forties), includes the names of Russell Ames, Amnon Balber, Lee Baxandall, Bob Bollard, Al Brachman, G. Howard, Louis Colman, Ben J. Davis, Jr., Edwin T.J. Grandy, John Greenway, A.L. Hart, Jr., Jo Inguanti, Eva Jessye, Pete Kameron, Dorothy P. Keziah, Daniel Kotansky, Klaus Kuhnke, Johnathan Kwitny, Warren Ling, Herman Michelson, David S. Nielson, Isaac Orleans, Gilbert Parmele, R.J. Robinson, Frank Scott, Charles Seeger, Nathan Spiegel, Alan J. Stein, Ellen J. Stekert, E. Sternheim, Malvina C. Thompson, Frank Wigglesworth. An early unidentified letter is dated January 21, 191-.

Other materials in the collection include a musical score fragment, eleven notebooks, poems (one with first line: For she is safe!, inscribed in the hand of the period on pages of Light on Little Graves, 1848), printed pieces (including articles from New Masses, 1931-1947, and a news clipping A Slight Mistake, ca. 1840's), song lyrics, and writings, largely undated except for two bearing dates of 1927 and 1962.

Collection size: 144 items

Related manuscripts: Gellert mss. II

For more information about this collection and any related materials contact the Public Services Department, Lilly Library, Indiana University, Bloomington, IN 47405. Call (812) 855-2452 or send an email using our Ask a Question form.