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Collection Guide: YIVO Digital Assets

A comprehensive overview of the digital assets of the YIVO Institute for Jewish Research.

Ruth Rubin Archive

About the YIVO Sound Archive

The Max and Frieda Weinstein Archive of YIVO Sound Recordings houses over 20,000 recordings in many musical genres. In addition to music, the Sound Archive stewards a collection of spoken word recordings, oral histories, interviews, radio programs, and field recordings.

Many of these resources are available only in person and by appointment, but a listing of digitized audio recordings ⁠— and where to find them ⁠— can be found in this section. 

YIVO's collection of recorded Jewish music is one of the most extensive and frequently consulted in the world. It embraces all genres, including:

  • Yiddish and Hebrew art, folk, popular and theater music
  • Holocaust songs
  • Liturgical and Hasidic music
  • Choral music
  • Instrumental compositions
  • Children's songs
  • Holiday songs
  • Klezmer music
  • Unique test recordings never released
  • The only known surviving examples of some released recordings

Click here for a comprehensive guide to the YIVO Sound Archive.

For reference questions, to make an appointment, to donate sound documents, or to order sound reproductions, call (212) 294-6169 or write to

Ruth Rubin Legacy Archive of Yiddish Folksongs

Ruth Rubin was a performer, folklorist, and musicologist who devoted her life to collecting and preserving Yiddish folklore. YIVO holds her collection of field recordings – over 2,500 songs recorded between 1946 and 1979 – as well as sound documents of Rubin’s lectures, concerts, and interviews. YIVO also stewards materials relating to her personal life, including personal notebooks, articles, correspondence, and Rubin’s never-published dissertation.


The WEVD YIVO podcast is a podcast of recordings from YIVO's radio program WEVD, which was on air from 1963 to 1976. The postcast highlights excerpts from programs of interviews and lectures, with a focus on the New York Yiddish world.

Internet Archive

The YIVO Sound Archive is in the process of adding digitized sound recordings to its Internet Archive page.

Please note that these materials are available for download, although use of materials available on the Internet Archive are subject to the same Permissions and Reproductions policy as any other YIVO Archives or Library object.


A number of digitized tracks are available on the Sound Archive's SoundCloud.