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Harmonie Singing Society papers

Identifier: MS 2796


This collection includes minutes (1911-53), correspondence (1920-45), financial records (1922; 1937-57), song lyrics, and minutes of the Harmonie Building Society, Harmonie Singing Society, and Harmonie Schutzen Verein.


  • 1895-1957


Conditions Governing Access

The collection is open for research use.

Conditions Governing Use

The reproduction of materials in this collection may be subject to copyright restrictions. It is the responsibility of the researcher to determine and satisfy copyright clearances or other case restrictions when publishing or otherwise distributing materials found in the collections. For more information visit the MCHC’s Rights and Permissions page.

Biographical / Historical

The Harmonie Building Company and the Harmonie Singing Society were established in 1895. The Building Society was incorporated for the purpose of buying, selling, leasing, improving, disposing of and otherwise dealing in land. The Society's first project was to purchase a building at 414 W. Fayette Street, and rent it back to the Singing Society.

The Singing Society remained there until 1905, when the premises were rented to the Gottlieb, Bauernschmidt, Strauss Brewing Company. In 1911, the brewing company agreed to lease the third floor back to the Singing Society.

In 1903, an offshoot of the Harmonie Singing Society was founded: the Harmonie Schutzen Verein. The shooting society was one of a number in Baltimore established by the German community.

The Harmonie Singing Society was involved in programs with national and international societies. The collection documents their relationship with the Lancaster Verein in Lancaster, Pennsylvania, and the Wien Verein in Vienna, Austria.

The Harmonie Singing Society disbanded sometime after 1957.


1.04 Linear Feet (3 boxes)

Language of Materials


Immediate Source of Acquisition

Gift of Frederick Singley Koontz, Esquire.

Scope and Contents

The collection is divided into three series: Harmonie Building Society, Harmonie Singing Society, and Harmonie Schutzen Verein. The bulk of the material is associated with the Singing Society. Some of the minute books, and all of the song lyrics are in German.

Unfortunately, very few papers of the building company survive. The minute book of the Harmonie Building Company indicates that many of the books and papers of the company were lost or destroyed, some in renovating the building and others in the 1904 fire.

The minutes, correspondence and songs created by the Singing Society describe the establishment and activities of a German singing society. Taken as a whole, and used in conjunction with other resources at MHS, the collection documents a popular cultural activity within the strong German community in Baltimore during the first half of the twentieth century.

Guide to the Harmonie Singing Society papers
Under Revision
Margaret N. Burri
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Script of description
Code for undetermined script
Language of description note

Revision Statements

  • 2020-03-18: Manually entered into ArchivesSpace by Mallory Herberger.

Repository Details

Part of the H. Furlong Baldwin Library Repository

H. Furlong Baldwin Library
Maryland Center for History and Culture
610 Park Avenue
Baltimore MD 21201 United States