In its early years, the fund supported notable 20th-century musicians such as Bela Bartok, Benjamin Britten, Giancarlo Menotti, Virgil Thomson, and Walter Piston. From 1945 to 1952, the Fund sponsored the week-long Columbia Festival of Contemporary American Music. The Ditson Fund was also active in supporting the Composers’ Forum concerts in New York.
The fund's namesake, Alice Ditson, was the wife of music publisher Charles Healy Ditson and daughter-in-law of Oliver Ditson, founder of the publishing house that bore his name. She was a supporter of American classical music during her lifetime, and her will bequested $400,000 (equivalent to $7.4 million in 2020) to Columbia University for "the encouragement and aide of musicians."
- Alice M. Ditson Fund website
- Alice M. Ditson Fund records at the Rare Book and Manuscript Library, Columbia University, New York, NY
- August 1, Theodore Wiprudon; 2000 (2000-08-01). "On the Money: New Music Funding in the United States". NewMusicBox. Retrieved 2020-04-10.CS1 maint: numeric names: authors list (link)
- Tommasini, Anthony (2010-06-09). "Jack Beeson, Composer and Teacher, Dies at 88". The New York Times. ISSN 0362-4331. Retrieved 2020-04-10.
- Peyser, Joan (1995). The Music of My Time. Pro/AM Music Resources Incorporated. ISBN 978-0-912483-99-3.
- Tommasini, Anthony (1997). Virgil Thomson: Composer on the Aisle. W. W. Norton & Company. p. 379. ISBN 978-0-393-04006-7.
- Steinberg, Michael (1995). The Symphony: A Listener's Guide. Oxford University Press. p. 420. ISBN 978-0-19-512665-5.
- "About the Ditson Fund Recordings Archive".
- Patterson, Nick (2011). "The Archives of the Columbia-Princeton Electronic Music Center". Notes. 67 (3): 483–502. doi:10.1353/not.2011.0008. ISSN 0027-4380. JSTOR 23012776. S2CID 191585272.
- Ardizzone, Heidi (2007). An Illuminated Life: Belle Da Costa Greene's Journey from Prejudice to Privilege. W. W. Norton & Company. ISBN 978-0-393-05104-9.
- "About the Fund". The Alice M. Ditson Fund. Retrieved 2021-02-20.
- Beardslee, Bethany; Proctor, Minna (2017). I Sang the Unsingable: My Life in Twentieth-Century Music. Boydell & Brewer. ISBN 978-1-58046-900-5.
- "Columbia Receives Trust to Aid Music". The New York Times. 1940-05-16. p. 31. Retrieved 2021-02-20.