The rocker’s personal collection of written works, photographs, magazines and other artifacts from throughout his career will make up the new Bruce Springsteen Archives and Center for American Music. Monmouth is fittingly located near the Jersey Shore, not far from Springsteen’s hometown of Freehold and even closer to Asbury Park, the beach town where his career began.
“The establishment of the Bruce Springsteen Archives and Center for American Music celebrates and reinforces the Jersey Shore’s legacy in the history of American music, while providing a truly transformative experience for our students,” said University President, Paul R. Brown.
While Springsteen’s collection will be the primary focus, the Center will reportedly also promote other legendary American musicians such as Woody Guthrie, Robert Johnson, Hank Williams and Frank Sinatra. The materials will be available to classes throughout the University, especially its music business program.
Prior to gaining Springsteen’s personal archives, Monmouth established the Bruce Springsteen Special Collection in 2011. The collection began at the Asbury Park Public Library and now boasts nearly 35,000 items, many of them donated by fans. Robert Santelli, the executive director of the Grammy Museum in Los Angeles and a Monmouth alum, helped his alma mater secure that collection and was reportedly involved in bringing Springsteen’s archives to the University as well. Santelli is expected to take on a leadership position at the new Springsteen Center
Monmouth did not disclose any financial details about the new Springsteen Center, though both the interest in and price of rock archives has grown. Last March, the George Kaiser Family Foundation purchased a trove of 6,000 artifacts from Bob Dylan’s private collection for an estimated $15 to $20 million.