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G. Theodore Wichmann papers

Identifier: Mss 0075

Collection Overview

The collection consists of four approximately equal parts: writings on music and miscellaneous, correspondence, printed programs, and other materials including ephemera, clippings, receipts, photographs, and an oversize student folio.

The writings include short essays on Mozart, Bizet, Rossini, Beethoven, and Ambroise Thomas. An oversized folio lists private students, the dates of lessons, and payments from 1921-1928. The photographs are of the Symphony Orchestra, students at the Chicago Musical College circa 1922, and teachers at the Musical College. Wichmann's 1922 diploma and a 1942 playbill for the Symphony Orchestra are also oversized.

The correspondence consists mainly of letters from fellow musicians and letters with high praise from numerous supporters of the Symphony Orchestra. The principal correspondents include Carl Strehle, a teacher of harmony from Leipzig, Germany who taught Wichmann; Carl Behr, a conductor writing from Asheville, North Carolina; Donn Mills, conductor of the ballet orchestra in Winnipeg, Canada, and also writing from elsewhere; Herland W. Cleaveland, a music teacher at Taylor University, Upland, Indiana; Louis Levine, a Charleston supporter of the Symphonic Orchestra; and H. Leon Larisey of Meggett, South Carolina, a father determined to help Wichmann turn his reluctant son into a musician. A 1912 letter to the American Federation of Labor details problems encountered in trying to unionize Charleston's musicians (nearly 13 pages).

Most of the printed programs date from 1926-1931 with one from 1940. The earlier programs for performances for the Symphony Orchestra in Hibernian Hall are extensive.

Other materials include ephemera relating to Wichmann and his musical career (1915-1960), clippings regarding the Philharmonic Symphony Orchestra (1925-1929), notes and receipts for events and expenses (1924-1928), Philharmonic Society of Charleston photgraphs (1925), Wichmann's Chicago Musical College diploma (1922), and an award given to Wichmann by the Charleston Real Estate Board (1966). Also includes one oversize student folio (1921-1928), which lists Wichmann's private students, lesson dates, and payment schedules.


  • Creation: 1904-1966


Language of Material

Materials in English

Access Restrictions

This collection is open for research.

Copyright Notice

The nature of the College of Charleston's archival holdings means that copyright or other information about restrictions may be difficult or even impossible to determine despite reasonable efforts. Special Collections claims only physical ownership of most archival materials.

The materials from our collections are made available for use in research, teaching, and private study, pursuant to U.S. copyright law. The user must assume full responsibility for any use of the materials, including but not limited to, infringement of copyright and publication rights of reproduced materials. Any materials used for academic research or otherwise should be fully credited with the source.

Biographical Note

Theodore Wichmann (1886-1966) graduated from the Chicago Musical College in 1922 and in 1925 he founded the Charleston Philharmonic Symphony Orchestra. He organized the Charleston High School Orchestra, the Charleston High School Band, the Public School Orchestra, and the Brass and Reed Choir. He also gave private music lessons.


2.5 linear feet (3 document boxes, 1 oversize box)


Theodore Wichmann (1886-1966) founded the Charleston Philharmonic Symphony Orchestra and taught music lessons in Charleston, South Carolina. This collection includes Wichmann's writings on Mozart, Bizet, Rossini, Beethoven, and Ambroise Thomas, printed programs, and business and personal correspondence for the Orchestra and Wichmann's school music lessons.

Collection Arrangement

  1. Writings, undated
  2. Correspondence, 1904, 1912-1965
  3. Programs, 1926-1931, 1940, 1942
  4. Other materials, 1913-1960, undated

Acquisitions Information

Donated by Emily Peterson Deluca, March 1998.

Processing Information

Originally processed by Special Collections staff, date unknown. Reprocessed by Cara McHugh, March 2013.

Inventory of the G. Theodore Wichmann Papers, 1904-1966
Processed by: Cara McHugh; machine-readable finding aid created by: Cara McHugh
Description rules
Language of description
Script of description

Repository Details

Part of the Special Collections Repository

Special Collections
College of Charleston Libraries
66 George Street
Charleston South Carolina 29424
(843) 953-8016
(843) 953-6319 (Fax)