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Frederic Louis Ritter (1834-1891) was a German composer and author. After Ritter's death, Albert Metcalf bought Ritter's music collection, and donated it to Tufts University. Frederic Louis Ritter was born in Strasbourg, France, on June 22, 1834. Growing up, Ritter studied both French and Germanic styles of music. At the age of 18, he was appointed to be a professor of music at the Protestant Seminary of Fénéstrange. Ritter immigrated to the United States in 1856 at the age of 23, following his relatives; at the time, he was noted to possess an extraordinarily large music collection. Initially, Ritter moved to Cincinnati, where he founded the Cecilia and Philharmonic Societies. He moved to New York City in 1862, and had a large influence over the musical scene. There, he directed both the Sacred Harmonic and Arion Choral Societies, and organized "what is considered to be the city's first music festival" at Steinway Hall in 1867. He was made a Professor of Music at Vassar College in the same year, and rose to become Director of the department in 1878. He was awarded an honorary Doctor of Music in 1877 from New York University. Ritter died in Antwerp, Belgium, on July 6, 1891. Soon after Ritter's death, Albert Metcalf purchased Ritter's music collection, containing rare musical scores and texts. Metcalf continued to add to the collection after Ritter's death, and donated the entire collection to Tufts as the Albert Metcalf Musical Library, on November 27, 1901.
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