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Tonieri-MacDowell Colony Collection

Letters, 1921-1942

MC 154

1 clamshell box

About Emil and Mary Tonieri:

Emil and Mary Tonieri were caretaker managers of The MacDowell Colony in Peterborough, New Hampshire for many years. The MacDowell Colony, the nation’s oldest and largest artists’ retreat, was founded in 1908 by Marian Griswold Nevins MacDowell (1857-1956) as a tribute to her husband, the noted American composer Edward Alexander MacDowell (1861-1908). Administered by the Edward MacDowell Association with headquarters in New York, the MacDowell Colony was to be a quiet haven “where working conditions most favorable to the production of enduring works of imagination shall be provided for creative artists.” Over the hundred years of its existence, the Colony has gained national and international recognition for its artists and their works. More than 50 Pulitzer Prizes have been won by MacDowell alumni and such works as Thornton Wilder’s Our Town (Grover’s Corners is modeled on Peterborough), Leonard Bernstein’s Mass, and Aaron Copland’s Appalachian Spring were conceived at MacDowell.

About the Tonieri-MacDowell Colony Collection:

The Tonieri-MacDowell Colony Collection contains correspondence dating from 1921-1942 written by various colonists to the couple at the MacDowell Colony. There are 53 letters from founder Marian MacDowell, mostly written while she was traveling around the country performing concerts of her husband’s work in order to raise funds for the Colony. Other correspondents include Nina Maud Richardson, Marian MacDowell’s secretary, several officers of the organization, composers Amy Cheney Beach, Arthur Finley Nevin and Anne Shaw Obendorfer, artist Lewis C. Daniel, poets Nancy Byrd Turner and Frances Frost, and writers Mary Antin, Carl Carmer, Virginia Moore, Jules Bois, Sylvia C. Bates and Kathryn White Ryan.

Folder Listing:

  1. Correspondence
  2. Miscellaneous
  3. Photographs

I. Correspondence

f.1 Antin-Brown.
f.2 Carmer-Goldstein.
f.3 Hastell-MacConnell.
f.4 MacDowell, Marian, 1926-1932.
f.5 MacDowell, Marian, 1934.
f.6 MacDowell, Marian, 1935-January 1936.
f.7 MacDowell, Marian, March-May 1936.
f.8 MacDowell, Marian, 1941.
f.9 MacDowell, Marian, 1942.
f.10 MacDowell, Marian, undated.
f.11 Mackey-Nevins.
f.12 Oberndorfer-Ryan.
f.13 Smith-Swaltow.
f.14 Titus-Williams
f.15 Unidentified
f.16 Others to others chronologically arranged.

II. Miscellaneous

f.17 Edward MacDowell Association 1907-1928 pamphlet; child’s (L. Ballard) story; article about Beatrice Cuming for Sud Magazine dated January 1934; Victory birthday card, etc.

III. Photographs

f.18 e.1 Mary Tonieri, July 1933.

e.2 Unidentified (M. Tonieri?).

2 Responses to “Tonieri-MacDowell Colony Collection”

  1. Elizabeth Moore Says:

    Hello. My very distant uncle and aunt were caretaker and chef, respectivley, at the colony during the 60′s and 70′s. They were Lloyd and Louise Crockett from North Haven, Maine. louise passed away sometime in the 80′s and Lloyd retired to Florida where he re-acquainted with my mother, Olivia Moore. He gave me an original composed piece of music written by Leonard Bernstein in 1971. It is entitled “Christmas Round.” There is also another piece composed by a woman and a poem by another woman. I do not have children to pass this on to and I was wondering if this is valuable or if anyone would want it for a collection. It was done in pencil and some ink, and signed and dated by the maestro. I always loved Leonard Bernstein, and I have some articles in Opera News etc.and understand he cherished his time spent at the colony. On the dedication of his round he wrote that it was to “all of his fellow colonials”. I understand that regardles of accolades from elswhere, his approval from fellow colonials meant most to him. The lyrics in the round mentiona the first names of the fellows. I’d appreaciate any response. Thank you. ESMoore

  2. wer Says:

    Thank you for your comments and for getting in touch with us. We are always interested in collecting materials related to the MacDowell Colony and its esteemed “colonials.” We would be delighted to make it part of our collection here at UNH.

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