Grace Moore Papers
The Grace Moore Papers (1898-1947) detail Moore’s career as an opera singer and actress from Tennessee. Correspondence, notes, photographs, concert programs, movie and play scripts, along with newspaper clippings, fan club publications, vinyl performance records and a series of scrapbooks that follow the life, career, and death of Grace Moore are included. Performance posters and a series of sheet music used, performed, and signed by Grace Moore, along with a group of letters written by famous composers and assembled by Miss Moore are aslo included.
Series I. Correspondence, 1916-1948 This series includes personal correspondence (Sub-series A) with letters to Ben Bower, and Helen Ruth Matthews, Grace Moore’s Secretary, along with telegrams to her husband and friends. This series also consists of business correspondence (Sub-series B) regarding Grace Moore's finances and her dealings with the Metropolitan Muscial Bureau, Inc. Handwritten notes and telephone messages (Sub-series C) are also included. The fan mail (Sub-series D) is comprised of messages held for personal responses, photograph requests, and responses from Grace Moore.
Series II. Photographs, 1930-1939 This series consists of photographs of Grace Moore from her performances and movie sets (Sub-series A) such as “One Night of Love,” “King Steps Out,” and “I’ll Take Romance.” Signed photographs of Grace Moore (Sub-series B) along with photographs from various movies in which Grace Moore did not act are also included.
Series III. Programs, 1928-1951 This series consists of programs featuring Grace Moore (Sub-series A) including her debut concert, and programs honoring Grace Moore (Sub-series B).
Series IV. Scripts, 1934-1940, undated This series consists of bound scripts from movies, radio shows, and plays. Many of these scripts include revisions and handwritten notes. Series V. Newspaper Clippings, circa 1930-1947 This series consists of newspaper clippings that span the life and death of Grace Moore and includes articles related to the actress and singer, her personal life, her performances, her death, as well as articles about her hometown, her induction to the Hall of Fame, biographies, and her family.
Series VI. Fan Club Publications, 1936-1947 This series consists of fan club newsletters titled “Fan Club News,” that cover Grace Moore’s career and death.
Series VII. Scrapbooks, 1924-1955 This series consists of a collection of scrapbooks from multiple sources, including scrapbooks that have been taken out of their original binding from 1930-1940 complied by her secretary Helen Ruth, along with 18 scrapbooks still in their original binding (circa 1876-1955), covering Grace Moore’s life and career. These scrapbooks include newspaper clippings, photographs, programs, letters, telegrams, correspondence and various ephemera.
Series VIII. Sheet Music, 1838-1958 This series consists of 5 sheet music boxes. It includes individual sheets of music (Sub-series A) arranged by date, sheet music personlized and annotated by Grace Moore and various composers (Sub-series B), including music signed by Moore, and sheet music signed by composers addressed to Grace Moore. Compilations and collections of music arranged by title (Sub-series C), handwritten sheet music (Sub-series D), and materials relaed to music (Sub-series E) consisting of letters by composers, and the singing method of Manuel Gracia, are also included.
Series IX. Promotional Material, 1949, undated This series consists of re-releases of promotional movie posters and large performance posters.
Series X. Vinyl Records Filed in record boxes: Includes 8 vinyl records of Grace Moore’s performances and souvenir albums.
- Majority of material found within 1930 - 1947
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Manuscript and University Archives collections are stored offsite, and a minimum of 24 hours is needed to retrieve these items for use. Researchers interested in consulting any of the collections are advised to contact Special Collections.
Conditions Governing Use
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13 Linear Feet
The Grace Moore Papers (1898-1947) detail Moore’s career as an opera singer and actress from Tennessee. Correspondence, notes, photographs, concert programs, movie and play scripts, along with newspaper clippings, fan club publications, vinyl performance records and a series of scrapbooks that follow the life, career, and death of Grace Moore are included. Performance posters and a series of sheet music used, performed, and signed by Grace Moore are also included, along with a group of letters written by famous composers and assembled by Miss Moore.
Nicknamed the "Tennessee Nightingale," opera singer Grace Moore was born December 5, 1898 or 1901, in Slabtown, Tennessee, and raised in Jellico, Tennessee. She studied singing and music theory at Ward-Belmont College in Nashville and later in Washington, D.C. Around 1920, Moore moved to New York and debuted in 1928 at the Metropolitan Opera in La Boheme. She later starred in a number of musical motion pictures, including New Moon (1930), Jenny Lind (1931), One Night of Love (1934), Love Me Forever (1935), and I'll Take Romance (1937). She was nominated for an Academy Award after her performance in One Night of Love. She toured Europe and sang at the Met several times.
In 1931, Moore married Spanish actor Valentin Parera in Cannes, France. On January 26, 1947, the plane Moore was riding crashed and exploded during takeoff in Copenhagen, Denmark. Her body was flown to Chattanooga, Tennessee, and buried.
This collection consists of 27 boxes divided into 10 series.
Series I. Correspondence, 1916-1948 Sub-series A. General Correspondence, 1916-1948 Sub-series B. Business correspondence, 1930-1936, undated Sub-series C. Handwritten notes and phone messages, undated Sub-series D. Fan Mail, 1934-1935
Series II. Photographs, 1930-1939 Sub-Series A. Photographs from film sets, 1930-1937 Sub-series B. Miscellaneous photographs from other movies and signed photographs, 1934-1939
Series III. Programs, 1928-1951 Sub-series A. Programs featuring Grace Moore by date, 1928- 1946, undated Sub-series B. Programs Honoring Grace Moore, 1935-1937, undated
Series IV. Scripts, 1934-1940, undated
Series V. Newspaper Clippings, circa 1930-1947
Series VI. Fan Club Publications, 1936-1947
Series VII. Scrapbooks, 1924-1955
Series VIII. Sheet Music, 1838-1958 Sub-series A. Individual sheets of music arranged by date, 1867-1958 Sub-series B. Sheet Music Personalized by Grace Moore and Various Composers, 1920-1944, undated Sub-series C. Compilations, albums, and collections of sheet music arranged by name, 1896-1945 Sub-series D. Miscellaneous sheet music pages, undated Sub-series E. Material Related to Music, 1861-1938, undated
Series IX. Promotional Material, 1949, undated
Series X. Vinyl Records
Portions of this collection were previously listed as MS.0047, MS.1025, MS.1111, MS.2341, and MS.2008.
This collection is property of the University of Tennessee Libraries, Knoxville, Special Collections. Part of the Grace Moore Collection was donated to Special Collections by Miss Mae Walker in 1986.