Scope and arrangement
The Leonard Warren Papers document the professional career of the American baritone. Much of the collection is comprised of clippings and scrapbooks, as well as some promotional materials, such as broadsides and posters. Subjects that are particularly well represented among these papers are Warren's various engagements in Latin America during the 1940s and his successful 1958 tour of the Soviet Union, arranged by the Hurok organization. The sudden and unexpected death of Warren in 1960 elicited an outpouring of condolences sent directly to his widow, Agatha Leifflen Warren, or forwarded to her by various departments of the Metropolitan Opera Association. Among the many condolence cards, letters, and telegrams contained in the collection are messages sent by Marion Anderson, Rudolf Bing, Agnes De Mille (whose husband, Walter Prude, represented Warren professionally), Jerome Hines, Erich Leinsdorf, Robert Merrill, Dimitri Mitropoulos, Richard Mohr, John D. Rockefeller, and Richard Tucker. Perhaps some of the most interesting items, however, were tributes offered by fans of the singer. Aside from a few candid photographs and a handmade anniversary greeting for his wife, the collection includes very little of a personal nature.
The Leonard Warren papers are arranged in three series:
- 1938 - 19602 boxes
The Professional Papers series mainly consists of clippings of reviews of Leonard Warren's performances and recordings. With the exception of a collage anniversary greeting created for his wife, the single folder of correspondence contains only a few items relating to bookings and publicity matters. Similarly, there are only four photographs, two of which are snapshots, most likely dating from the 1940s, which show the Warrens relaxing while on tour in Brazil. Also of note are materials relating to Warren's 1958 Soviet Union visit, including scraps of paper containing audience members' requests for particular songs at his recitals.
- 1960 - 19632 boxes
The Condolences and Memorial Tributes series chiefly contains the numerous cards, letters, and telegrams sent to Agatha Leifflen Warren or the Metropolitan Opera Association in the wake of Leonard Warren's untimely death. Senders range from Warren's famous colleagues to ordinary fans; some mailings included essays and poems written in honor of the late singer. Also included is the guest book from the funeral home, which contains many signatures.
- 1942 - 19604 boxes
The Oversized Materials series is comprised of three scrapbooks, which contain additional clippings relating to Warren. Also of interest are several large posters, many of which advertise Warren's appearances in Buenos Aires, Argentina at the Teatro Colón during the 1940s. All of the material in this series is highly fragile.