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Louis Lombard papers

Identifier: PIMS-0019

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Scope and Contents

The Louis Lombard papers (1861-1948) contain published scores and personal papers. Series 1 contains scores of compositions written by Lombard, including pieces for solo piano, songs for voice and piano, works for chamber ensemble, transcriptions for piano, and works for orchestra.

Series 2 contains personal and professional documents. Many of the newspaper clippings relate to the institutions Lombard was affiliated with as well as his publications and performances. Personal and professional correspondence, concert programs, and official government documents are also included.


  • Creation: 1861 - 1948


Language of Materials

Primarily English and French. The libretto of Errisinola is in Italian.

Conditions Governing Access

The collection is open for use at the Peabody Archives.

Conditions Governing Use

Single copies may be made for research purposes. Researchers are responsible for determining any copyright questions. It is not necessary to seek our permission as the owner of the physical work to publish or otherwise use public domain materials that we have made available for use, unless Johns Hopkins University holds the copyright. All requests for permission to publish or perform materials in this collection must be submitted in writing to the archivist of the Arthur Friedheim Library.

Biographical / Historical

Louis Lombard, a violinist, composer, and conductor who founded the Utica Conservatory of Music, was born in Lyon, France, in 1861. In 1870, Lombard’s parents moved to Marseille, where he began taking classes in violin, solfeggio, and harmony of the National Conservatory of Music. In 1876 he visited the United States on a concert tour, returning to Paris in 1878 to continue his studies. He returned to the U.S. in 1879, traveling as a violin soloist and conductor. In 1886, H. C. Bunner, editor of Puck, wrote the libretto of a comic opera, to which Louis Lombard composed the music. In 1887 he again went abroad, traveling through seventeen countries in Europe, Asia, and Africa. During this time, he studied eight languages and began to compose and conduct music.

Upon his return to the United States in 1888, Lombard began his studies at the Columbia Law School. In February 1889, having proposed opening a conservatory of music in Utica, New York, he secured a large financial guarantee from 100 families. He then gave up the study of law, and on September 2, 1889, opened the Utica Conservatory of Music with six professors and 186 students.

Lombard's works have been published by C. Berdan, Oliver Ditson, Theodore Presser, and E.D. Buckingham. In 1900 he purchased a property in Switzerland where he kept an orchestra in residence and invited visiting musicians to perform. He conducted his personal orchestra as well as orchestras in New York, Paris, Milan, Berlin, Budapest, and Cairo. While living in Switzerland, he also composed and self-published music for orchestras, military bands, string quartets, and piano. From 1916 to 1920 he served as American Vice-Consul in both Zurich and Lugano. He died in 1927.


.32 Cubic Feet (1 flat box)


Louis Lombard was a violinist, composer, and conductor who founded the Utica (N.Y.) Conservatory of Music in 1889 and led an orchestra at his estate in Switzerland in the early twentieth century. The Louis Lombard papers contain published scores of Lombard's music for piano, voice, chamber ensemble, and orchestra, and personal and professional documents such as newspaper clippings, correspondence, and concert programs. Correspondents include Jules Massenet, John Philip Sousa, Ella Wheeler Wilcox, and William Jennings Bryan.

Other Finding Aids

A detailed inventory of correspondence exists offline. Please contact the Peabody Archives for more information.

Immediate Source of Acquisition

Acquisition information for this collection is unclear. Manuscript material may have been included in a gift from Allen Lombard in 1982 of Louis Lombard's book collection. Clippings and photocopied documents were likely donated by Irving Lowens, who was researching Lombard, or by his widow, Margery Lowens.

Related Materials

A microfilm of the manuscript score to Lombard's opera Errisinola can be located through the library catalog.

Some books from Lombard’s personal library, including his books Observations of a Musician and Observations of a Bachelor and their translations in French, German, and Italian, can be accessed through the library catalog. A list of additional books owned by Lombard is available upon request.

Additional research files on Lombard assembled by Irving Lowens are available at Special Collections in Performing Arts at the University of Maryland, College Park.

Processing Information

Processed by Grace Minghsuan Tsai in 2016.

Guide to the Louis Lombard papers
Kerri Sheehan
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Script of description
Language of description note

Repository Details

Part of the Peabody Archives Repository

Peabody Institute
1 E. Mount Vernon Place
Baltimore MD 21202 USA