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Leonore Schwarz Neumaier Collection

Identifier: AR 6421

Scope and Content Note

This collection contains materials about the personal and professional life of opera singer Leonore Schwarz Neumaier.

The Professional series contains material relating to Leonore Schwarz Neumaier's career as an opera singer. It includes a set of programs for the 1916-1917 season at the Magdeburg Stadttheater, as well as dozens of programs for Neumaier's other performances over decades. The post-1934 programs were mostly for performances arranged by Jewish organizations. The series also contains dozens of clipped reviews, both loose and pasted in a scrapbook, of Neumaier's performances; five folders of posters advertising Neumaier's performances; and three editions of the Frankfurter Theater Almanach für Opernhaus und Schauspielhaus (1917-1918; 1918-1919; 1920-1921) and one edition of the Illustrierter Künstler Almanach (1920-1921). The Various folder contains an undated list of Neumaier's repertoire; a ticket for a 1931 performance; a handwritten program from a 1930 performance; letters of gratitude from organizations where she performed; and a list of performers from Graz. The posthumous material includes clippings; a brochure describing the 2002 exhibition "A Voice Silenced: Leonore Schwarz Neumaier"; and photocopies of the materials used in the exhibition.

The Personal series contains personal material relating to Neumaier, including eleven letters, dated between 1940 and 1942, from Leonore in Frankfurt to her son John and husband Otto in the United States. It also includes clipped and handwritten German recipes; materials on John Neumaier's post-war investigation into and commemoration of Neumaier's death; a June 1942 postcard from Berta Müller to Jakob Singer stating that Leonore is "traveling" (verreist); a 1924 summary of a dissertation by Alexander Schwarz; and an advertisement for a 1939 household auction.


  • 1909-2002
  • Majority of material found within 1912-1937


Language of Materials

This collection is in English and German.

Access Restrictions

This collection is open to researchers.

Access Information

Readers may access the collection by visiting the Lillian Goldman Reading Room at the Center for Jewish History. We recommend reserving the collection in advance; please visit the LBI Online Catalog and click on the "Request" button.

Biographical Note

Leonore Neumaier née Schwarz (1889, Vienna, Austria – 1942, Majdanek camp, Lublin, Poland) pursued her operatic career in Austria and Germany in the early part of the 20th century, singing with opera companies in Graz, Nuremberg, Magdeburg, and Frankfurt am Main, where she was engaged as the first contralto from 1917 to 1921. Following her marriage in 1921 to Otto Neumaier, a Frankfurt businessman, and the birth of their son, Hans (John), she appeared mainly on the concert stage. In the 1930s, the growing repression of German Jews under Nazi-rule restricted her appearances to Jewish groups and organizations associated with the Jüdischer Kulturbund. In June 1942, she was deported from Frankfurt to Majdanek and murdered.

Neumaier had shipped most of the material in this collection from Frankfurt to Switzerland in anticipation of immigrating to the United States; the trunks arrived in Minnesota in the early 1950s.


0.5 Linear Feet (1 box) and 6 oversize folders (OSL 39)


This collection contains materials about the personal and professional life of opera singer Leonore Schwarz Neumaier (1889-1942), including programs, posters, and correspondence.


The collection was arranged into two series, Professional and Personal. Folders within each series are arranged alphabetically.

Related Material

The LBI Library holds a catalog published in 2003 in conjunction with the German version of the exhibit "A Voice Silenced: Leonore Schwarz Neumaier": "Zum Verstummen gebracht ..." : die Frankfurter Opernsaengerin Leonore Schwarz-Neumaier (1889-1942).

Separated Material

Materials relating to John J. Neumaier were removed to AR 11999. Two textiles were previously removed to the LBI Arts and Objects Collection.

Processing Information

Materials were rehoused in acid-free folders. Duplicates and photocopies were discarded.

The programs in Box 1, Folder 4, are fragile and mold-stained.

The collection was sent to the CJH conservation lab for mold removal, August to December 2013.

Guide to the Leonore Schwarz Neumaier (1889-1942) Collection undated, 1909-2002 , bulk 1912-1937 AR 6421
Processed by Kevin Schlottmann
© 2014
Language of description
Script of description
Language of description note
Description is in English.
Processing made possible by the Jewish Performing Arts Digital Archive Initiative.

Repository Details

Part of the Leo Baeck Institute Repository

15 West 16th Street
New York NY 10011 United States