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Helen E. Plinkiewisch Papers, 1888-1995

Overview of the Collection

Creator
Plinkiewisch, Helen.
Title
Helen E. Plinkiewisch Papers
Dates
1888-1995 (inclusive)
1925-1990 (bulk)
Quantity
2.75 cubic feet, including 250 photographs and slides and 1 cassette tape, (6 boxes, including 3 oversize boxes)
Collection Number
MSS Plinkiewisch
Summary
The Plinkiewisch Papers document the education, music teaching career, and related activities of music educator Helen E. Plinkiewisch and include diaries and journals, teaching records, musical compositions, a sound recording, and photographs. Plinkiewisch graduated from Oregon State Agricultural College in 1929 and had a long and successful career as a music educator in the public schools of Garden City (Long Island), New York.
Repository
Oregon State University Libraries, Special Collections and Archives Research Center
Special Collections and Archives Research Center
121 The Valley Library
Oregon State University
Corvallis OR
97331-4501
Telephone: 541-737-2075
Fax: 541-737-8674
scarc@oregonstate.edu
Access Restrictions

Collection is open for research.

Languages
English


Biographical NoteReturn to Top

Helen Edwina Plinkiewisch, a 1929 graduate of Oregon State Agricultural College, had a long and successful career as a music educator in the public schools of Garden City (Long Island), New York.

She was born in 1908 in Portland, Oregon, and attended public schools in that city. After graduating from Jefferson High School in 1925, Plinkiewisch attended Oregon State Agricultural College, and received a diploma in music and theory in 1929. While at Oregon State, she was a member of the Alpha Chi Omega sorority; was president of Euterpe, the women's music honorary society; was a member of Phi Kappa Phi honor society; and was the accompanist for the Madrigal Club. After studying piano in Vienna and Rome for a year, she earned a B.S. in Music Education in 1931 from New York University and an M.S. in Education from Columbia University in 1934. In 1955, Plinkiewisch earned a Doctorate in Education (Music Education major) from Columbia. In 1935, she began teaching music at the Stewart School in Garden City, New York; she taught there until her retirement in 1974. At Stewart School, Plinkiewisch began to introduce her students to opera. She had them design and perform an abbreviated version of an opera to be performed by the Metropolitan Opera in New York City. Plinkiewisch received many accolades for her work in introducing opera to children.

She also taught part time at New Paltz State University (1953); Hofstra University (1953-1970); and Adelphi University (1972). Plinkiewisch wrote a number of musical compositions, a number of which were published, and wrote articles for several music magazines and journals. She served as an advisory member of the Metropolitan Opera Guild's Education Committee, and was a board member of several local music organizations. Helen Plinkiewisch died in 1994.

Content DescriptionReturn to Top

The Helen E. Plinkiewisch papers are organized into six series, most of which document her education and career as a music educator. This collection is valuable for researchers interested in Plinkiewisch as a person, but also those interested in musical education or composition and student life at Oregon State Agricultural College in the 1920s.

Included in the collection is an assortment of personal materials such as diaries and journals, family records, musical performance and student event announcements, diplomas and awards, and a sketchbook created by her mother. Materials related to her education include musical textbooks, research materials, and annotated drafts of her doctoral dissertation at Columbia University on the music of Charles Ives, Roy Harris and Aaron Copland. Items related to her professional life as an educator and composer include documentation related to her efforts to incorporate opera into the grade school curriculum in New York, teaching records, materials related to professional organizations, and musical compositions. There are photographs that cover the topics represented in the textual materials, with highlights being pictures of a trip to Europe, her family, student productions, and professional performances.

Several photographs from the collection and other information about Plinkiewisch are available in Oregon Digital.

Use of the CollectionReturn to Top

Preferred Citation

Helen E. Plinkiewisch Papers (MSS Plinkiewisch), Oregon State University Special Collections and Archives Research Center, Corvallis, Oregon.

Administrative InformationReturn to Top


Detailed Description of the CollectionReturn to Top

Series 1:  Biographical and personal, 1905-1995Return to Top

Contains personal information about Plinkiewisch, diaries and journals, family records, materials from her time as a student at Oregon State College, musical performance announcements, diplomas and awards, and a sketch book created by her mother.

Container(s) Description Dates
Personal materials
Subseries 1 contains personal information about Plinkiewisch, including vitae, articles, and a biographical sketch. Also included are diaries and journals, including one of her stay in Europe in 1929-1930.
1907-1995
Box/Folder
1.1
Vitae, biographical profiles and other articles, biographical sketch by Mary Jacq Burck, passport, wedding certificate, parents' wedding invitation, address book, and pocket calendar inscribed with prayers.
1907-1995
1.2
Miscellaneous notes
1940-1960
1.3
Europe trip journal
1929-1930
1.4
Day book
1947
1.5
Weekly calendar and address book with miscellaneous thoughts, financial information, lists, astrological information
1940-1960
6.1
Selected music news clippings
1949-1979
Correspondence
Subseries 2 contains correspondence between Plinkiewisch and her mother, Paul and Lillian Petri, and Oregon State College classmates.
1927-1989
Box/Folder
1.6
Paul and Lillian Petri
1947-1955 and undated
1.7
Oregon State College friends and organizations
1927-1988 and undated
1.8
Amy R. Hanson Plinkiewisch (mother)
1927-1937 and undated
1.9
Letters of appreciation
1941-1989 and undated
Programs and announcements
Subseries 3 contains programs and announcements of student dances, balls, and awards ceremonies at OSC, and musical performances by Plinkiewisch, the Petris, and others.
1926-1950
Box/Folder
1.10
Oregon State College, dances, balls, banquets, awards ceremonies and commencement
1926-1929
1.11
Performances by Plinkiewisch at Oregon State College, and by Paul and Lillian Petri
1928-1950
1.12
Performances by Plinkiewisch (and her teachers) in Europe, New York University, Morningside Trio, and Garden City Public Schools
1928-1940 and undated
Diplomas, honors and awards
Subseries 4 includes diplomas, honors and awards given to Plinkiewisch throughout her educational and professional career.
1922-1990
Box/Folder
1.13
Diplomas, honors, and awards
Included are diplomas from Shaver School in Portland, Oregon, 1922; Jefferson High School in Portland, 1925; and Oregon State Agricultural College, 1929. Also related to her education is an Initiation Certificate from the Alpha Chi Omega Chi Chapter from 1927 and a Freshman Honors certificate from Oregon State Agricultural College from 1927. Miscellaneous honors and certificates are also present, including a National Geographic Society; Membership Certificate from 1951; Delta Kappa Gamma Society; Initiation Certificate from 1951, 1977; Fifty Year Member Certificate from Alpha Chi Omega; Retirement honors certificate from Garden City Public Schools for 1974-1975; Who's Who in Society from 1986; Certificate of Appreciation from Delta Kappa Gamma Society and International Song Book from 1990; Pi State Honors; and a 25 year membership certificate from Delta Kappa Gamma Society from 1990.
1922-1990
1.14
10 year faculty honor Hofstra University
1964
4.10
Diploma for Ed. D. from Columbia University
1955
6.2
Diploma and awards
Diploma from New York University (1931), awards from Stewart School 4th grade class (1971) and Garden City Schools retirement (1974).
1931-1974
Sketchbook
1905
Box/Folder
1.15
Sketchbook created by Plinkiewisch's mother Amy Rosina Hansen Plinkiewisch
1905

Series 2:  Organizations, 1923-1991Return to Top

Documents musical and other organizations that Plinkiewisch was affiliated with throughout her career.

Container(s) Description Dates
Box/Folder
1.16
Clubs and societies
An Alpha Chi Omega songbook from 1923, an Oregon State College Chi Chapter newsletter from Aug 1956, materials related to the Delta Kappa Gamma Society from 1961-1980, and materials related to the Friends of Adelphi University Library, Inc. from 1974-1987.
1923-1987
1.17
Community and music associations
Materials related to the Community Club of Garden City and Hempstead, Inc. from 1983-1991, the Institute of the Arts at Hofstra University from 1974-1975, Garden City Concerts, Inc. from 1961-1964, and the Manhasset Bay Opera Association from 1981.
1961-1991
1.18
International Women's Year Forum speech notes
undated

Series 3:  Musical compositions, 1929-1990Return to Top

Plinkiewisch's musical compositions, several of which were published, including the "Song of the Train" and the piano accompaniment for a 1946 book of children's songs entitled "A Merry Go Round of Songs." Also included in this series is an audio cassetee recording for Song of the Trains.

Container(s) Description Dates
Box/Folder
1.19
Musical compositions for Six Melodic Miniatures, Arioso for Clarinet with Strings, Alpha Chi Omega Waltz, and The Oregon Trail.
1983 and undated
1.20
Correspondence and articles
Items related to the Delta Kappa Gamma Society, 1978-1990, and Plinkiewisch's musical interests between 1939-1988.
1939-1990
3.01
Cassette tape recording of Train Song
undated
4.02
Musical composition for Santa's Song
undated
6.03
Gavotte
1929
6.04
A Merry-go-round of songs
1946
6.05
Various musical scores
My Girl of Yesteryear (1947), A Salute to Delta Kappa Gamma, Our Beautiful Portland, Vagabond's Song.
circa 1950
6.06
Song of the Train, Santa's Ho! Ho! Song
1949
6.07
Short melodic pieces, Easter carol, Morningside
undated
6.08
Sonata, miscellaneous manuscripts
undated

Series 4:  Teaching records, 1932-1989Return to Top

Records related to Plinkiewisch's teaching, primarily documenting efforts to incorporate opera into the grade school music curriculum. This series contains programs and other publicity materials of the student operas put on by her students, as well as records from the Metropolitan Opera Guild, Inc., Education Department pertaining to students and opera.

Container(s) Description Dates
Box/Folder
1.21
Personnel and publicity materials Odessa, New York
School programs and clippings, 1932-1933, and Plinkiewisch's employment contract for 1932.
1932-1933
1.22
Personnel documents Stewart School, Garden City, New York
Plinkiewisch's salary information and contract for 1937-1957 and her PTA Summer Program appointment for 1970.
1937-1970
1.23
"Why Spring Was Late," script and programs hand-colored by students for their student operetta.
1939
1.24
School songs and music festival
Copy of "Our Songs," which was created by students circa 1940; the Stewart School song; and the program for the first Annual Music Festival at Garden City Public Schools in 1937.
1937-1940 and undated
1.25
Programs, clippings, and other publicity materials for student operas
1949-1989
1.26
The Metropolitan Opera Guild, Inc. program supporting student opera
Programs, brochures, booklets, articles and other materials related to the Education Department programs and They Shall Have Opera.
1950-1988
1.27
Student opera manuscript "On Discovering Opera Early" and lecture note cards
undated
1.28
Articles and clippings about Plinkiewisch's activities
1958-1983
1.29
Hofstra University contracts and teaching assignments
1953-1969
1.30
Papers, manuscripts, and talks
Manuscript draft of "Style in Music" and completed manuscript for "Singing: Grades 4-6," as well as notecards for presentations on a contemporary music project, children and music, and piano practice.
circa 1951 and undated
1.31
Correspondence
Miscellaneous correspondence and specifically related to teaching at New Paltz (New York) State Teachers College and Adelphi University.
1937-1972
6.09
Stewart School children's musical plays and drafts of music
Circa 1940s
6.10
Stewart School theater materials
Student operetta "Why Spring Was Late" (1939), scripts for educational music magazine (1941), scenery and costume drawings.
1939-1941
6.11
Stewart School theater and music manuscript materials
Student operetta "Why Spring Was Late," volume of script and music manuscript, other music manuscript.
1939

Series 5:  Training and education records, 1890-1956Return to Top

Container(s) Description Dates
Oregon State College
Books, a paper, lesson notes, and correspondence related to Plinkiwusch's time at Oregon State College.
1890-1931
Box/Folder
2.1
Paper, "The American Indian in American Music"
undated
2.2
Books, "The Freshman Girl: A guide to college life" and "The Music Educator"
The Freshman Girl: A guide to college life by Kate W. Jameson (1925) and 2 copies of The Music Educator by Lillian Petri (1926, 1928).
1925-1928
2.3
Books, "Mind over muscle: A technical economy for pianists" and "Music fundamentals correlated Vol. II"
Mind over muscle: A technical economy for pianists by Lillian Petri (1924) and Music fundamentals correlated Vol. II by Lillian Petri (1927).
1924-1927
2.4
"The material used in musical composition" by Percy Goetschius
1923
2.5
"The theory of music" and "The physical basis of piano touch and tone"
The theory of music by Louis C. Elson (1890) and The physical basis of piano touch and tone by Otto Ortmann (1925, inscribed to Helen Plinkiewisch from Lillian Petri in 1931).
1890-1931
2.6
Correspondence and lesson notes with Kiriena Ziloti
1935-1936
Columbia University
1931-1956
Box/Folder
2.7
Personal information and materials related to student work
Personal information (1933, 1950), registration information (1934), record book from teachers college (1931-1947), academic records (1933-1947), degree plan, Graduate Record Exam (1950), exams (1947, 1951), graduation and commencement (1955-1956).
1931-1956
2.8
Doctoral work on "A Contribution to the Understanding of the Music of Charles Ives, Roy Harris, and Aaron Copland"
Doctoral project "A Contribution to the Understanding of the Music of Charles Ives, Roy Harris, and Aaron Copland," proposal (1951), outlines, comments from prominent composers and music educators (1951).
1951
2.9
Materials related to doctoral work
Correspondence (1953-1955), oral exam schedule (1955), register of D.Ed. reports (1956).
1953-1956
2.10
Research and background materials for dissertation
Research and background materials; Charles Ives compiled references (2 vol.); "A Connecticut Yankee in Music," undated and unpublished manuscript by Lucille Fletcher.
undated
2.11
General information on Charles Ives, Aaron Copland, and Roy Harris
1948-1951, undated
2.12
Dissertation draft of Section 1
circa 1952
2.13
Dissertation draft of Section 2: Ives
circa 1952
2.14
Dissertation draft of Section 2: Harris
circa 1952
2.15
Dissertation draft of Section 2: Copland
circa 1952
2.16
Dissertation draft of Section 3
circa 1952
2.17
Dissertation draft of bibliography
circa 1952
2.18
Dissertation final draft
1954

Series 6:  Photographs, 1888-1985Return to Top

Several photographs from the collection are available in Oregon Digital.

Container(s) Description Dates
Box/Folder
2.19
Portraits of Plinkiewisch and candid shots with family and friends
1908-1985
2.20
Portraits and candid shots of Amy R. (Hansen) and Arthur Plinkiewisch (Helen's parents)
1888-circa 1935
2.21
Photo and postcard album
Portraits and candid shots of Plinkiewisch; photos of parents, the Petris, and friends; photos of travel to Europe; photos and halftone images of European cities; color and photo postcards of Oregon scenes; photos of skiing and camping.
circa 1909-1932
2.22
Photo and postcard album
Portraits and candid shots of Plinkiewisch; photos of parents, the Petris, and friends; photos of travel to Europe; photos and halftone images of European cities; color and photo postcards of Oregon scenes; photos of skiing and camping.
circa 1909-1932
2.23
Paul and Lillian Petri
Portrait of Lillian Petri, inscribed to Helen Plinkiewisch (1927); portrait of Paul Petri, inscribed to Helen (1929); Paul and Lillian Petri sitting in front of fireplace (1935); candid shots of the Petris (circa 1930-1935); "Casa Musica," the Petri home (1930-1935); Theta Chi (OSC) fraternity members (circa 1929); unidentified group of men with wrapped books (circa 1930).
1927-1935
2.24
Stewart School operas and other musical performances
Small set for Die Gotterdamerung; Frank LaVista painting puppets for The Magic Flute (1951); Scenes from AIDA (1958); Helen Plinkiewisch preparing students for La Boheme, to be broadcast over the radio (1959); Stewart Singers (1966, 1973).
1951-1973
2.25
Slides of student operas
Carmen, 17 color slides (circa 1968); La Traviata, 9 color slides (circa 1970); La Boheme, 25 color slides (undated); unidentified opera with Old West theme, 25 color slides (undated).
circa 1969
2.26
Metropolitan Opera stage crew photograph and slide sets showing operas
Metropolitan Opera stage crew, photograph (circa 1950). Slide sets: "A Visit to the Met," 21 color slides (circa 1950); "Onstage at the Met" featuring The Marriage of Figaro, 23 color slides (circa 1960); "Onstage at the Met" unidentified opera, 20 color slides (undated).
circa 1955
5.1
Portraits of Helen and Amy Plinkiewisch
undated