Collections and Exhibits
In 1983, Ira F. Brilliant donated his collection of about 80 first editions to San José State University to establish the library and archives of the Beethoven Center. Now containing the largest collection of Beethoven materials in the western hemisphere, the Center's rare collections include manuscripts, historical keyboards, scores, books, objects, prints, and realia such as the Guevara Lock of Beethoven's Hair.
The library collections do not circulate, but many materials are available for browsing and use in the public reading room, including books, scores, sound recordings, and videos.
The Center's collection is being cataloged online on the Beethoven Gateway, available through the San José State University Library's online catalog. At present, about 80% of the Center's books and scores are listed in the database.
A growing digital collection of portraits, engravings, maps, first and early editions, and other materials in the Beethoven Center's collection is now available. You can help support this project by sponsoring an image. Download brochure