The Ion Butnaru collection consists of manuscripts, research material, printed material, photographs, correspondence, and other items.
Manuscripts by Butnaru in the collection include The Silent Holocaust: Romania and Its Jews (Greenwood Press, 1992); Waiting for Jerusalem: Surviving the Holocaust in Romania (Greenwood Press, 1993); The Truth in Sour Pills (unpublished); Emigration (unpublished); Moshe Cop and His World; and three short stories
Manuscripts by other authors in the collection include The Last Great Jewish Traveler, by Israel Joseph Benjamin II (edited and with a preface by Butnaru); and Cilibi Moise and His Times, a collection of proverbs.
Research material in the collection consists of statistical and oral history data regarding the Jewish population in Romania (all photocopies).
Printed material in the collection includes twenty-three newspaper articles by Butnaru about the circus, (1968-1969), later used for Calatorie in Lumea Circului (Journeys in the Circus World); reviews of Butnaru’s books Calatorie in Lumea Circului (1967-1974), The Silent Holocaust, and Moshe Cop and His World.
Also present are copies of book-length works, including Chestia Evreiasca (The Jewish Problem), by St. Antim; Din Viata Unui Evreu-Roman (From the Life of a Romanian Jew), by Dr. A. D. Stern; The American Jewish Book – The Jews of Romania, by Dr. E. Schwarzfeld; and Cartea Negra (The Black Book), by Matatias Carp.
Photographs in the collection includes several prints of the circus; and images of Butnaru in Russia, Romania, Massachusetts (on Martha’s Vineyard with his family), and at a book signing at Boston University (1992). Also present is a black and white print including Rabbi Alex Safran, King Michael and Queen Anne of Romania, and Morris B. Abrams (Ambassador of the U.S. to Switzerland), and his wife, and Abram’s house (1992).
Correspondence in the collection includes both personal and professional letters, dating from 1985 through the 1990s. Present are several letters between Butnaru and Henry Carasso, the translator of The Silent Holocaust into French (1988-1994); letters to and from Butnaru’s wife, Jeneane Butnaru; and several letters from various scholars, researchers, and holocaust survivors. Many letters are written in Romanian.
Other items in the collection include a list of labor camps in Romania where Butnaru was imprisoned from 1939 to 1944; a certificate from the Bnai Zion Foundation to Butnaru for his contribution to them (1995); and other items.