Scope and Contents
The Frank Schiffman Apollo Theater Collection documents the business endeavors of Frank Schiffman, and the Apollo Theater's contribution to American culture. The collection includes sound recordings, personal and business correspondence, photographs, business records, and printed material. The collection is arranged in six series as follows:
Series 1: Correspondence, 1938-1985, consists of communications to and from Frank Schiffman, Jack Schiffman, and various business associates and friends. Correspondence is arranged in chronological order and by coresspondent..
Series 2: Business Records, 1931-1974, includes financial ledgers; phone books; booking cards containing names, dates, and performance reviews; and accounting documents pertaining to the management of the Apollo Theater.
Series 3: Publicity, undated, includes print media, pamphlets, scrapbooks, and flyers documenting the numerous performances and activities at the Apollo Theater. Several of the newsprint advertisements were reprinted in two books written about the Apollo Theater: Ted Fox's Showtime at the Apollo Theater, and Jack Schiffman's Uptown: The Story of Harlem's Apollo Theater.
Series 4: Photographs, undated primarily standard publicity stills of vocalists, comedians, musicians, and other artists who performed at the Apollo Theater, such as Lena Horne, Bo Diddley, Pearl Bailey, B.B. King, Jackson Five, Pigmeat Markham, Moms Mabley, Dick Gregory, Richard Pryor, and the Nicholas Brothers. Also includes candid shots of Frank Schiffman with business associates and friends. Similar to the print media, many of the photographs were used as illustrations in Ted Fox's Showtime at the Apollo Theater, and Jack Schiffman's Uptown: The Story of Harlem's Apollo Theater.
Series 5: Ephemera, undated, includes interview transcripts, various manuscripts, and architectural drawings of the Apollo Theater.
Series 6: Audio Recordings, 1940-1975, contains promotional broadcasts, publicity shorts, and one random music album. All of the audio recordings in the Schiffman Collection originated on 1/4" open reel audio tape and have cassette reference copies.