The Glenn Cliffe Bainum Papers fill nine boxes and span Bainum's life, with the bulk of the papers dating between the 1930s and the 1960s. Most of the materials in this collection consist of correspondence, records and photographs from Bainum's professional life after he arrived at Northwestern. He kept detailed scrapbooks, especially in his early years at Northwestern, of programs and newspaper clippings relating to many of his activities. Information about nearly all of his major career activities is documented in his papers.
The Papers are divided into eight subseries: Biographical, Correspondence, Northwestern University School of Music, Other Organizations, General, Sheet Music, Photographs, Recordings and Movies.
The extensive Biographical files include information of both an official and a more personal nature. Bainum's career is well documented in the extensive newspaper clippings, which range from the beginning of his career at Northwestern until his death, and the programs from many of the concerts he conducted. Bainum's marriage certificate and a 1958 season pass to the Chicago Cubs are some of the personal items in this section. Materials relating to Bainum's wife, Manta, and father, O. J., are also included in this part of the collection.
Correspondence, arranged chronologically, dates between the late 1940s to Bainum's 80th birthday in 1968. The warm and personal nature of many of these letters offers a glimpse at Bainum's personality and the regard that was felt for him by his professional contacts and friends. One file contains correspondence between Bainum and the firm of Boosey and Hawkes, publishers of some of his band arrangements, as well as a royalty statement and contracts from other publishers.
Most of the materials related to the Northwestern School of Music are administrative in nature, consisting of specific information about programming, formations, and the band's trips for away-game performances. Also included is information about the Summer Session concerts on Deering Field, which Bainum initiated, and which were a favored tradition at Northwestern for many years.
The quantity and quality of the work Bainum did for Other Organizations beyond Northwestern is documented in files arranged alphabetically by the name of the organization (North Shore Music Festival, All-Star Band, etc.). Guest-appearance folders are arranged alphabetically by venue. Within folders, materials are arranged chronologically. See also the Clippings folders in Box 1.
A few other General materials include various marching band charts and a notebook Bainum kept early in his career.
A dropfront box holds printed Sheet Music that was either arranged or transcribed for band by Bainum. Among the titles are “Sirens” by Debussy, Verdi's “Credo” from Otello, and a piece called “Irish Rhapsody” that he arranged for a harp ensemble. One piece, a march entitled “Rusty,” was composed by Albert I. Ciná and dedicated to “Rusty” Bainum.
The Photographs included in this collection represent a wide range of dates and performance groups. Among them are pictures taken during Summer Session concerts in the 1930s, photographs of the All-Star Band, and pictures taken near the end of Bainum's career, when he was guest conducting school groups and summer festivals. Also in this box are two oversize scores of Bainum's concert band arrangement of the Forest Scene from Glière's Third Symphony.
A number of reel-to-reel Recordings of Northwestern University concerts are included in one box of the collection, and Movies of marching band performances and Bainum's home fill the final box.
An additional drop-front box holds oversized photographs and a number of contact sheets.