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At a Glance
This collection is arranged in two series.
Fritz A. Kuttner (1903-1991) was a German Jewish refugee in Shanghai in the 1940s, later immigrating to the United States in 1949. During his time in Shaghai, Kuttner became interested in Chinese music, and ultimately published many articles and a book, The Archeology of Music in Ancient China, on the subject. The papers include correspondence, manuscripts, drafts, and notes, primarily dating from his time in the United States.
The papers consist primarily of correspondence, which was originally arranged alphabetically in a series of binders. The binders only cover Kuttner's time in the United States, from 1949-1991, with nothing available from earlier periods. The correspondence deals primarily with music and related research and scholarship.
The papers also include Kuttner's passport and other certificates from the 1920s and 1930s, as well as miscellaneous manuscripts and lectures notes.
The collection contains very little material which dates from Kuttner's time in Germany or in China.
Using the Collection
Rare Book and Manuscript Library
Restrictions on Access
This collection is located off-site. You will need to request this material at least three business days in advance to use the collection in the Rare Book and Manuscript Library reading room.
This collection has no restrictions.
Terms Governing Use and Reproduction
Single photocopies may be made for research purposes. The RBML maintains ownership of the physical material only. Copyright remains with the creator and his/her heirs. The responsibility to secure copyright permission rests with the patron.
Identification of specific item; Date (if known); Fritz A. Kuttner Papers; Box and Folder; Rare Book and Manuscript Library, Columbia University Library.
No additions are expected
About the Finding Aid / Processing Information
Columbia University Libraries, Rare Book and Manuscript Library
Papers processed by Catherine C. Ricciardi March 2015.
Finding aid written by Catherine C. Ricciardi March 2015.
2015-04-01 File created.
2015-04-01 XML document instance created by Catherine C. Ricciardi.
2019-05-20 EAD was imported spring 2019 as part of the ArchivesSpace Phase II migration.
History / Biographical Note
Biographical / Historical
Fritz Alex Kuttner was born on January 18, 1903 in Poznan. At the time, the city was in Germany; it is now in Poland.
Kuttner studied economics in Berlin, earning a doctorate in 1932. After Hitler came to power, Kuttner left Germany in April 1939. He settled in Shanghai, and by 1942 owned a music store, Philharmonia. After the end of war in 1945, Kuttner was invited to teach as a guest lecturer on Western music theory and history at St. John's University. During his time in China, Kuttner became interested in traditional Chinese music. He spent time doing research, and also wrote as a music critic for the China Press under the pseudonym "Marpurg" in 1948-1949. His work in China would prove to be the beginning of a lifetime of scholarly work.
Kuttner left China and immigrated to the United States in 1949.
Kuttner continued his research work and teaching after his arrival in the United States. He wrote biographical entries for MGG and other encyclopedias, scholarly articles, and his book, The Archaeology of Music in Ancient China, which was published shortly before his death.
Kuttner died in New York City on September 25, 1991.