Inventory of the Naoum and Eugenia Blinder Papers, 1909-1988

Processed by John Emerson, revised by Judy Tsou; machine-readable finding aid created by Xiuzhi Zhou
Music Library
Hargrove Music Library
University of California, Berkeley
Berkeley, California, 94720-6000
Phone: (510) 642-2623
© 1997
The Regents of the University of California. All rights reserved.

Inventory of the Naoum and Eugenia Blinder Papers, 1909-1988

Collection number: ARCHIVES BLINDER 1

The Music Library

University of California, Berkeley

Berkeley, California

Contact Information

  • Hargrove Music Library
  • University of California, Berkeley
  • Berkeley, California, 94720-6000
  • Phone: (510) 642-2623
  • Email:
  • URL:
Processed by:
John Emerson (1982?)
Revised by:
Judy Tsou
Date Completed:
April 1991
Encoded by:
Xiuzhi Zhou
© 1996 The Regents of the University of California. All rights reserved.

Descriptive Summary

Title: Naoum and Eugenia Blinder Papers,
Date (inclusive): 1909-1988
Collection number: ARCHIVES BLINDER 1
Creator: Blinder, Naoum, 1889-1965
Extent: Number of containers: 1 carton, 1 oversize folder

Linear feet: 1.25
Repository: The Music Library
Berkeley, California 94720-6000
Shelf location: For current information on the location of these materials, please consult the Library's online catalog.
Language: English.

Administrative Information


The papers were given to the Music Library in three installments--September, 1981; October, 1981; and August, 1989.


The first two installments of the Blinder Papers were from Mrs. Eugene Blinder; the last installment from the estate of Mrs. Eugene Blinder via the San Francisco Symphony.


Collection is open for research.

Publication Rights

All requests for permission to publish or quote from manuscripts must be submitted in writing to the Head of The Music Library.

Preferred Citation

[Identification of item], Naoum and Eugenia Blinder Papers, ARCHIVES BLINDER 1, The Music Library, University of California, Berkeley.


Naoum Blinder, violinist and teacher, was born in Lutsk, Russia in 1889. He graduated from the Imperial Conservatory of Odessa at 14, where he studied with Alexander Fiedeman. From 1910 to 1913, he attended the Royal Manchester College of Music, where he studied with Adolph Brodsky. After graduation, he took up a teaching post at his alma mater, the Imperial Conservatory of Odessa, and remained there until 1920.
Blinder embarked on a concert tour in 1921. He gave concerts in the Ukraine, Turkestan, Leningrad, Moscow, and other cities. In 1926, Blinder went on a more extensive tour which included the Republic of Turkey, and Palestine, and returned to Russia by way of Siberia in January of 1927.
In 1928 Blinder (later joined by his wife and daughter) went on a concert tour in Japan which included 7 concerts in Tokyo alone, and 23 concerts in other cities of Japan. Instead of returning to Russia, he went to the United States (via Honolulu and San Francisco) to record for Columbia Records in New York. The Blinders remained in New York; Naoum taught at the Juilliard School between 1929 and 1931. It was around this time that his only daughter contracted tuberculosis and died at 13 years of age.
At the invitation of Issay Dobroven, Blinder accepted the concertmaster position at the San Francisco Symphony Orchestra, where he played under Pierre Monteux and Enrique Jorda in addition to Dobroven. Blinder remained with the orchestra until 1957, when his failing eyesight forced him to retire. During his years with the SFSO, he was soloist with many orchestras around the country. He was one of the founders of the San Francisco String Quartet (1935), which was comprised of members of the orchestra, including his cellist brother, Boris.
Blinder was a dedicated teacher as well. His most noted student was Isaac Stern. At one time, he had 17 students in the San Francisco Symphony Orchestra, and all the members of the first violin section of the Oakland Symphony Orchestra were Blinder students as well. Other noted students were David Abel, Austin Reller, and Glenn Dicterow, who was the concertmaster of the New York Philharmonic. Blinder died on November 21, 1965, of heart failure. He was 76 years old.

Scope and Content

This collection contains materials for both Naoum and Eugenia Blinder; however, the majority of the materials concerns Naoum and his concert career. The types of materials include newspaper clippings of concert reviews, concert programs and posters, photographs of many professional musicians of his day, biographical documents such as naturalization papers, and a concert tape. The collection also includes photocopies of Blinder materials presently held at the American Jewish Archives. Some of the materials are duplicates of our holdings.
The materials are largely acquired in three installments. Two portions were acquired in the fall of 1981, donated by Eugenia Blinder. Eugenia Blinder left the San Francisco Symphony Orchestra her estate at her death in 1989. The San Francisco Symphony Orchestra subsequently donated more papers to the Music Library in August, 1989. (See Series I, folder 1 for more information.)
Numerous items have received conservation treatment. Newspaper clippings have been photocopied onto acid-free paper, scrapbooks are also dismantled and photocopied (though the original order was retained), photographs were also treated, and some items were encapsulated.

The collection is divided into ten series, housed in one archival record storage box and an oversized phase box. The folder numbers with an "a" indicate that the materials are in the oversized phase box.

Series I: Acquisition Correspondence.

Scope and Content Note


Letters chronicling the acquisition of the collection, arranged in chronological order.

Series II: Biographical Materials.

Scope and Content Note

Includes naturalization papers and supporting documents, Manchester metrials, obituaries, publicity press releases and other biographical documents such as awards.

Series III: Concerts.

Scope and Content Note

This series includes many newspaper clippings of concert reviews from Russia, Japan, Turkey, Israel, and the United States. The scrapbooks are also filled with newspaper reviews. (See also Series X).

Series IV: Correspondence.

Scope and Content Note

Letters from friends and colleagues.

Series V: Blinder's students and friends.

Scope and Content Note

Letters, newspaper clippings, and photographs of friends and students, including star pupil Isaac Stern.

Series VI: Blinder's violin.

Scope and Content Note

Appraiser's reports and photographs.

Series VII: Photographs.

Scope and Content Note

This series is divided into:

Naoum Blinder

Scope and Content Note

Includes studio pictures as well as snapshots; all alone except one.

Pierre Monteux

Scope and Content Note

Includes pictures of the Monteux school in Hancock, Maine, and family members of Monteux.

Signed studio pictures from friends and students.

Scope and Content Note

If the only material on a student are pictures, they are arranged in this series. However, if there are letters as well as photographs, they are arranged under the series "Blinder's Students and Friends."

Other miscellaneous pictures.


Series VIII: Blinder's music

Scope and Content Note

One score with his fingerings.

Series IX: Eugene Getzeld Blinder.

Scope and Content Note

Includes an autobiography, various citizenship papers, photographs, and letters.

Series X: American Jewish Archives.

Scope and Content Note

Photocopies of materials from AJA, mostly newspaper clippings.


Series 1: Acquisition Correspondence

Folder 1

Acquisition Correspondence

Physical Description: Correspondence regarding the acquisitions of various portions of the collection.
Physical Description: 22 letters and memos
Physical Description: 1 newspaper clipping
Physical Description: 2 other items

Series 2: Biographical Materials

Folder 1

Immigration, 1928-1930

Physical Description: 3 items

A statement (in English translation) from Moscow Conservatory stating that he was a professor of violin there from 1923 to September 1, 1927.


A letter from the Dean of the Juilliard School to the American Consul in Montreal, Canada.


A statement of his activities in the United States from January, 1928 to June, 1930.

Folder 2


Physical Description: 7 items

4 documents (1910-1913) from The Royal Manchester College of Music pertaining to his studies there.


"Extracts from student register of (the) Royal Manchester College of Music"


History of the Royal Manchester College of Music (excerpts), mentioning Naoum Blinder.


"Extract from Annual Report of Royal Manchester College of Music, 1914."

Folder 3

Other Biographical Materials

Physical Description: 20 items

The Frank Mancini Music Teaching Award Certificate


A publicity release (biographical sketch)


Press Release No. 2, and No. 4


A script from KCBS radio station (San Francisco), dated July 26, 1957, announcing the retirement of Naoum Blinder from the San Francisco Symphony. Includes biographical sketch.


"Naoum Blinder -- His Career"


From Famous Jewish Musicians (p.321-322)


International Musician (January, 1947) --

Additional Note

Cover photo and article on Blinder

Incomplete clipping of article on Blinder. "The Remarkable Record fo the Symphony's Violin Teacher," San Francisco Sunday Chronicle (This World), January 14, 1962, page 26.


8 clippings from magazines and newspapers about Blinder.

Folder 3a

Other Biographical Materials (Oversize) Ministere de l'Education Nationale Certificate

Folder 4

Obituaries (4 pages): Newspaper clippings.


Series III: Concerts

Folder 1

Programs and Reviews, Russia, 1923-1926

Physical Description: 4 items
Physical Description: 2 originals
Folder 1a

Programs and Reviews, Russia

Physical Description: Oversize, 2 items

Concert Posters.

Folder 2

Programs and Reviews, Tel Aviv, 1926

Physical Description: 2 items
Physical Description: 1 original
Folder 3

Programs and Reviews, Turkey, 1926-1927

Physical Description: 3 items
Physical Description: 2 originals
Folder 4

Programs and Reviews, Japan, 1927

Physical Description: 17 items
Physical Description: 10 originals
Folder 5

Programs and Reviews, United States

Physical Description: Includes programs for San Francisco String Quartet. Also includes English translations of Foreign Press Reviews.
Physical Description: 20 items
Physical Description: 12 originals
Folder 5a

Programs and Reviews, United States

Physical Description: Oversize, 2 items

Posters, New York.

Folder 6

Scrapbook 1. Reviews of concerts from various stages of Blinder's career.

Physical Description: Includes an autographed program by Alexander Glazunov; an article on Pierre Monteux in the May, 1975 San Francisco Symphony Orchestra program.
Physical Description: 59 pages of acid-free photocopies with 2 original inserts
Folder 7

Original of scrapbook 1 without inserts.

Folder 8

Scrapbook 2 -- Original and acid-free photocopy (22 pp.)

Folder 9

Tapes (3)-- Concert tapes with Fresno Philharmonic


Series IV: Correspondence

Folder 1

Letters and telegrams


A. Letters from Isaac Stern

Physical Description: (3 letters)


Physical Description: 2 pp. typescript.


Physical Description: 2 pp. typescript.

No date. Hobart, Tasmania.

Physical Description: 7 pp.

B. From others

Physical Description: (19 items)

Bloch, Ernest. 3-3-1945.

Physical Description: 2 pp.

Bobchinsky, Isaac and Shura. Telegram. 2-5-1958.


Busse, Phyllis. 1-13-1946.

Physical Description: 1 p.

Forbes, Robert J. 11-24-1925.

Physical Description: 4 pp.

Forbes, Robert J. 1-24-1930.

Physical Description: 10 pp.

Forbes, Robert J. 9-3-1950.

Physical Description: 2 pp.

Gaucheron, Roger. 12-1-1938.

Physical Description: 1 p.

Hapgood, Elizabeth. 3-30-1928.

Physical Description: 1 p.

Monteagle, Kenneth. 12-18-1957. 1 p. And reply from Blinder. 12-27-1957.

Physical Description: 1 p. (and acid-free xerox)

Monteux, Pierre. 3-6-1958.

Physical Description: 2 pp.

[Monteux, Pierre.] Letter from Charlotte, sister of Mrs. Monteux, describing the last illness of Pierre Monteux. [June 1964]

Physical Description: 3 pp.

Nimitz, Admiral Chester W. 4-20-1963.

Physical Description: Card.

Oistrakh, David. 2-1-1960. 2 pp. In Russian


Oistrakh, David. 6-23-1962.

Physical Description: Post card. In Russian.

Schumann-Heink, Henry. 2-23-1949.

Physical Description: 1 p.

Scope and Content Note

With a copy of a letter from Howard Skinner to Schumann-Heink, complimenting Naoum Blinder. 2-23-1949. 1 p.

Shostakovich, Dmitri. 1-7-1961.

Physical Description: 2 pp. In Russian.

Spitalny, Leopold. No date.

Physical Description: 2 pp.

Scope and Content Note

Copy of text of a telegram, with text of the reply from Blinder.

Series V: Blinder's Students and Friends

Folder 1


Physical Description: 2 photocopies
Physical Description: 2 originals
Physical Description: 1 photograph
Physical Description: 4 snapshots
Folder 2

Brown, William Howard -- A log of his Russian tour August-September, 1960.

Physical Description: 27 pp.
Folder 3

Dicterow, Glenn

Physical Description: 3 photocopies of newpaper items
Physical Description: photograph of Blinder and Dicterow.
Folder 4


Physical Description: 1 recording
Physical Description: 1 autographed printed score
Folder 5

Reller, Austin

Physical Description: 1 recording
Physical Description: 1 newspaper clipping
Physical Description: 1 signed photograph
Folder 6

Sheinfeld, David

Physical Description: 1 score, 30 pp. Sonata for violin alone.
Folder 7

Stern, Isaac (1950s to 1989) Article on Stern in Horizon, outside folder 7.

Physical Description: 6 photocopies of newspaper clippings
Physical Description: 29 photograph/greetings cards
Physical Description: 9 small b/w photographs (smaller than 4.5" x 6"), including 3 pictures of Blinder and Stern.
Physical Description: 1 medium photograph of Stern and Blinder.
Physical Description: 4 large b/w photographs (some with Blinder).
Physical Description: 3 color photographs of Stern and Mrs. Blinder
Physical Description: 1 letter from San Francisco Symphony thanking Mrs. Blinder for lending the Stern pictures for the May 1987 program.
Folder 7a

Stern, Isaac

Physical Description: Oversize, 1 item

Signed photograph of a young Isaac Stern.

Series VI: Blinder's Violin

Folder 1

7 small and 3 large color photographs of the violin


9 documents regarding appraisals, etc.


Series VII: Photographs


Naoum Blinder-Some with Mrs. Blinder

Folder 1

Large Studio Portraits, 13, 1 with Mrs. Blinder

Scope and Content Note

Includes one early portrait from Odessa (mounted) Medium sized photographs (3)

Small b/w photographs of N. Blinder (4)


Small color photographs with Eugenia Blinder (3)


Pencil drawings of Naoum Blinder (2)


Oversized studio portrait of Naoum Blinder

Folder 2

San Francisco Quartet

Physical Description: 3 small photograph
Physical Description: 1 medium photographs
Physical Description: 8 large photographs
Folder 2a

San Francisco Quartet

Physical Description: 2 oversized caricatures
Folder 3a

San Francisco Sumphony Orchestra

Physical Description: 1 oversized photo

Signed Studio Photographs (29)

Folder 4

Abel, David (3)


Blair, Zena (2)


Chavez, Carlos


Fiedler, Arthur


Heifetz, Jascha


Joffa, Betty (2) (signed Kee Coleman)


Kantor, Gerhard


Kozojian(?), Robert


Kraus, Lily


Monteux, Doris


Monteux, Pierre


Nugata, George


Piatigorsky, Gregor


Riedel, Ernestine


Rodzinski, Arthur


Rose, Kent


Skalar, Sabrina(?)


Szigeti, Joseph


Szeryng, Henryk


Tressel, Williard


Vannin, Luisa


Walter, Bruno








Pierre Monteux

Scope and Content Note

Photographs of Pierre Monteux, his family, friends, and the Monteux School in Hancock, Maine.
Folder 5

Large photographs (8)


Medium photographs

Physical Description: (6 b/w, 2 color)

Scope and Content Note

Color pictures include Bruno Walter.

Small photographs --Monteux School.


18 photographs of Monteux School in Hancock, Maine.


6 photographs marked "On the way to Hancock, Maine"


Miscellaneous (small, 32 items)

Folder 6

7 items -- picture with brother Boris (a cellist), picture with Arthur Fiedler.


4 items -- picture with Howard Skinner and others Igor Stravinsky (1)


Andres Segovia (1)


"George [Nugata?] and Margaret ..."


12 items of Eugenia Blinder and the scenery


6 miscellaneous items


Miscellaneous (10 large and 1 duplicate small picture)

Folder 7

Kimber Award (for best teaching)


With Yehudi Menuhin


With David Abel, Arthur Fiedler, etc. (3)


With Bruno Walter (1 large, 1 small)


With Enrique Gorda


With an unidentified person


Group picture (from Buenos Aires)

Folder 7a

Unidentified woman violinist

Physical Description: (oversize)

Series VIII: Music

Folder 1

Music owned by Blinder

Scope and Content Note

A volume of Beethoven's violin sonatas with Blinder's fingerings.

Series IX: Eugenia Getzeld Blinder

Folder 1

Biographical Materials.


Autobiographical essay


Newspaper clipping on Mrs. Blinder and Isaac Stern




Birth Certificate (1)


Daughter's (Yelena) birth certificate and synagogue doument (2)


Citizenship papers (2)


Homemade recordings (2)


Interview with George Hellyer, her attorney,

Physical Description: casette tape

Additional Note

See also letter in Acquisition File (I:1).



1 group picture


3 with student


Photograph with Mrs. Chikaring



Additional Note

(undated lyrics of a song)

2 unidentified studio portraits, possibly a young Eugenia Getzeld, or Yelena, their daughter.

Additional Note

One of the portraits was kept on the family piano.
Folder 2

Condolence Letters (18)


Telegrams (2)

Folder 3

Other Correspondence


Carmi, Celine (1) of Jerusalem Music Centre. 9-7-1980.


Commanday, Robert (1). 8-4-1980.


Pease, June (1). "Credo"


Stern, Isaac (2) 4-9-1985 regarding appraisal of Naoum Blinder's violin; and 5-16-1985 regarding his concert tours.


Stern, Vera (2) one note undated; one letter thanks Mrs. Blinder for attending Isaac Stern's birthday concert in Jerusalem in July 1980.


Postcard (1) from Margaret and Ken. Postmarked 2-28-89.


Postcards (11), miscellaneous.

Folder 4

Alexen, Vladimir and Tamara


Certificates of Citizenship (2)


Certificate of Marriage (1)


Certificate of Death (1) -- Vladimir Alexen


Miscellaneous items (3)


13 photographs

Folder 5

Photographs (5) Possibly photographs of family from Russia

Folder 6

Miscellaneous documents

Physical Description: (3 items [with 2 originals documents], and 2 photographs)-- folder originally marked "Mrs. Blinder."

Series X: American Jewish Archives

Folder 1

Photocopies of the Blinder materials at the American Jewish Archives.