Landon, H. C. Robbins (1926-2009)

The H.C. Robbins Landon collection includes manuscripts, printed material, correspondence, diaries and journals, memorabilia, legal material, photographs, research material, financial material, audio material, professional material, artwork, scrapbooks, and notebooks.

Manuscripts in the collection consist of non-fiction work, music scores, essays, articles, radio scripts, and other materials. Nonfiction work includes manuscripts written by Landon or edited by him, including Handel and His World (1984); 1791: Mozart’s Last Year (1988); and The Mozart Compendium (1990); among others. Drafts or chapter drafts are often included with non-fiction works. Music scores include bound volumes of scores and vocal music, full scores, and fragments of works by various composers, including Joseph Hayden and Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, among others. Some scores, including Armida (1783), are annotated by the composers or inscribed by others.

Also included are various essays and articles by Landon, often regarding Haydn, other composers, or music composition in general; BBC radio scripts by Landon; various articles regarding Haydn or musical composition by other authors; sermons and related religious papers by Daniel O. Morton; and works by other ancestors and relatives of Landon; among other materials.

Printed material includes various newspapers, some contemporary to Haydn’s life and some ranging from 1786 to1865 or other years. Newspapers include The Examiner, Morning Herald, Observer, The Times, and The World, among others. Also included are magazines from the 1990s and 2000s; music catalogs from the mid to late 1900s; published articles by Landon or his ancestors; and miscellaneous pamphlets, booklets, and programs from Landon’s life.

Printed material also contains printed, photocopied, and bound scores, including work by notables such as Johann Sebastian Bach, Ludwig van Beethoven, George Frederick Handel, Joseph Haydn, and Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, among others; editorial and authorial proofs by Landon of various works; articles and scores edited by Landon; a published letter from Dr. Charles Burney concerning subscribers for Haydn’s “The Creation of the World;” and various articles about composers by other authors; among other materials.

Correspondence in the collection consists of letters belonging to various ancestors, including Dorothea Robbins Landon and William Grinnell Landon, among others; letters to and from Landon from 1935 to 1979 with family members, musicologists, organists, composers, lawyers, and others; professional correspondence to and from Landon from 1972 to 1982 with publishers, musicologists, performers, and colleagues; various professional letters; and postcards and letters to various friends; among other materials.


Also included are historical musical letters to or from notables such as Prince Pal Antal Esterhazy and Joseph Haydn, among others, as well as a letter from Leopold II, Holy Roman Emperor, to his sister Marie Antoinette, Queen of France.

Diaries and journals include several diaries from 1818 to 1965 by various relatives of Landon including Mary L. Grinnell, Dorothea Robbins Landon, Edward Ruggles Landon, Lucy Landon, Mary G. Landon, William G. Landon, Chandler Robbins, Harold C. Robbins, and Lucy Morton Robbins.

Memorabilia consists of an autograph book belonging to Landon’s ancestor Samuel Robbins and Landon’s senior class “prophecy” from Boston University in 1947.

Legal material in the collection includes a passport issued in 1819 to Landon’s ancestor, Levi Parsons, and a binder of various family birth, death, and marriage certificates.

Financial material includes Landon’s income tax records from 1953 to 1957 and 1959 and his bank records and receipts from 1958.

Photographs consist of family albums from 1897 to 1917, miscellaneous photographs of Landon and various family members, black and white prints of music scores and old writing, and various albums.

Research material in the collection includes various genealogical records of Landon’s ancestors dating back to the earliest New England colonists; a bible belonging to Lucy Morton Robbins containing family records; miscellaneous family papers circa (1800 to 1892), research files regarding Landon’s non-fiction works 1791: Mozart’s Last Year (1988) and Handel Italian Years (no date); various notes and materials regarding Haydn and Landon’s written work about him; various notebooks of research notes; a binder of material regarding a “storage lawsuit;” files of research material regarding various composers including as Johann Sebastian Bach, Ludwig van Beethoven, Joseph Haydn, and Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart; and files on the time periods of 1760 to 1781 and 1782 to 1790; among other materials.

Audio material includes cassettes of radio interviews with Landon; cassettes with music by various composers including Joseph Haydn; records with music material by Johann Sebastian Bach; tape reels of music conducted by H. Von Karajan; and miscellaneous reels, records, and long plays tapes of music by various composers.

Professional material in the collection consists of publicity material and reviews regarding Landon from 1950 to 1970, catalogs of professional contacts, and a directory of members for the American Society of Eighteenth-Century Studies from 1984 to 1985.

Also included in the collection are pencil sketches by Ernst Oppler; a scrapbook belonging to Charles D. Kellogg labeled “Boston YMCA Christmas Fair” consisting of letters, sketches, poems, and clippings; and a notebook labeled “Theater 315 Costume Design.” 

Notable Figures
1. Landon, H. C. Robbins (Howard Chandler Robbins), 1926-2009
Associated Subjects
1. Music Collections Subject Guide
2. History and Biography Subject Guide
3. Musicologists
4. Scores
5. Authors, American
6. American literature--20th century
7. Audiotapes
8. Music
9. Photographs