Roman Totenberg: A Symphony of a Life

Roman Totenberg’s papers at the Library tell the story of his amazing 101-year life. Born in Poland in 1911, he was a child prodigy on the violin, playing street corners in Russia to help his family survive famine. He returned to Poland, became a star while a teenager, eventually fled the Holocaust and became one of the 20th century’s greatest violinists, living the rest of his life in the United States. He was as renowned as a teacher as he was a performer, and his three children — Nina, Amy, Jill — each went on to prominent careers.

Chet Baker

Legendary jazz trumpeter and vocalist Chesney Henry Baker — better known as Chet — died 32 years ago this month in Amsterdam. The Library acquired the Chet Baker Materials from the Papers of Diane Vavra in 2015, an intimate cache of 108 items.