Scope and arrangement
The Eddie Bonnemère papers date from 1930 to 1987 (bulk dates 1966-1987) and chronicle Bonnemère's career as a music teacher, composer, and performer. The collection consists of biographical information, correspondence, education files, fellowship and grant materials, music compositions, teaching files, and scrapbooks.
The Biographical files include various versions of Bonnemère's resume, short biographical sketches, and summaries of his career. There is also a small selection of handwritten personal reminiscences and reflections penned by Bonnemère.
Correspondence files are arranged chronologically, and primarily contain letters discussing musical performances, church events, and professional engagements. While nearly all letters address Bonnemère's music or teaching career, there is a very small assortment of personal notes which generally commemorate holidays or special events.
The Education files comprise transcripts, evaluations, and records of Bonnemère's schooling. Most abundant are materials concerning his doctoral studies at Union Graduate School, which includes his application for admissions, correspondence, notes, program summaries, research, and reports. Also present are files from Bonnemère's time at New York University, Hunter College, Columbia Teachers College, Juilliard School of Music, and his honorary degree from Susquehanna University. Education files are arranged chronologically by institution.
Throughout his career Bonnemère often applied for fellowships and grant funding. Records of these requests and subsequent awards are found in the Fellowships and Grants files. Among these materials are records from the National Endowment for the Arts, New Jersey State Council on the Arts, and the American Music Center composer assistance program.
Music and lyrics written by Bonnemère are held in the Music Compositions files, which feature published sheet music, handwritten scores, and song lyrics. Compositions are arranged alphabetically by title when one is present, and untitled works are arranged chronologically. Additionally, there are legal papers regarding copyright information, and financial files detailing royalties and sales information.
The Performance files contain clippings, flyers, programs, press releases, and reviews from concerts, tours, and church services that span Bonnemère's entire professional career. The earliest program is for a 1930 concert in which Bonnemère performed at St. Marks Hall in Harlem as part of a group called The Little Bonnemere Bros. Additionally, Bonnemère kept handwritten logs of his performances, appearances, and reviews. The logs are located in box 13.
Bonnemère created three scrapbooks, all of which document his early New York City jazz career. The scrapbooks hold programs, clippings, flyers, and photographs. Some pages include Bonnemère's handwritten captions.
Items from Bonnemère's tenure as a New York City public school music teacher are held in the Teaching and Instruction files. Among these files are programs, yearbooks, notes from students, and memoranda from school administrators. These files also contain materials from conferences Bonnemère attended, workshops he taught, and summer camps where he was a music instructor. Most prevalent are files from Bonnemère's employment at Intermediate School 55 (Oceanhill-Brownsville) in Brooklyn and Intermediate School 44 (William J. O'Shea) in Manhattan.
The collection is arranged alphabetically by topic, and chronologically within each topic.