The New York Jazz Museum Photograph Collection documents some of the activities of the Museum as well as segments of the history of jazz. The collection includes an extensive portrait collection of jazz artists (195?-197?) and some documentation of the Museum's programs and activities (1972-1977).
The Musicians series existed as part of the Museum's working files. Included are single and group portraits, mostly informal views, capturing the artists in performance and during recording sessions. A number of portraits are also publicity photos. Some artists files include images of family, friends, and non-musical activities. Noteworthy in this series are a group of publicity stills depicting Louis Armstrong's tour of Japan in 1954. Portraits are arranged alphabetically by artist's name. Also included are views of the Newport Jazz Festival (1966, 1968, 1974) and the Tallinn Jazz Festival (Tallinn, Estonia, 1966), which are interfiled alphabetically in the Musicians series.
The Programs and Activities series documents an array of events sponsored by the Museum, including exhibitions and opening receptions, promotional concerts, and the Jazz Puppet Show. Several events show participating musicians. The collection documents some of the exhibitions organized by the Museum, including "Duke Ellington" (1973-74), "The Sax Section" and "About John Coltrane" (1974), and "The Jazz Trumpet" (1975-76). Also depicted are some of the concerts, including the Sun Concerts, from late 1973 to mid-1975, as well as the "Jamathon," an emergency fund raising jazz performance, from early 1977, aimed at keeping the Museum from closing its doors. The collection also contains one image of the Museum's exterior, and views of office space and the Museum Shop. With the exception of a few images, the collection lacks documentation of the Museum's administration, staff, patrons, and the Museum's lecture series.
Content: Some collection photographs have been published in a number of journal articles and monographs.
Biographical/historical: The New York Jazz Museum was founded in 1972 to preserve the history of jazz and to educate the public about jazz. The Museum closed its doors in June 1977 after a series of financial difficulties.
Content: Organized into two series: I. Musicians (195?-197?); II. Programs and Activities (1972-1977).