William Mathews

Tchaikovsky Research
William Mathews (1837-1912)

American music writer and organist (b. 1837 in London, New Hampshire ; d. 1 April 1912 in Denver, Colorado), born William Smyth Babcock Mathews, usually known as W. S. B. Mathews.

After studying music in Boston and at Highland University in Illinois, he became professor of music at Wesleyan Female College in Macon, Georgia. From 1877 to 1887 he served as music critic for the Chicago Record Herald and Chicago Tribune, and in 1884 was one of the founder members of the city's literary society known as the Groller Club. He wrote several books on musical subjects, and in 1891 he established the monthly magazine Music.

Mathews wrote to Tchaikovsky in March 1893 to invite him to the "World Fair" exposition to take place in Chicago later that summer, although the composer declined the invitation.

Correspondence with Tchaikovsky

One letter from Tchaikovsky to William Mathews has survived, and has been translated into English on this website: