Early American Sheet Music
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Early American Sheet Music
A collection of sites and articles for anyone interested in early American sheet music and music publishing
Curated by Vickie Kline
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Music of World War I: Turning a Static Collection Into a Vibrant Resource

Music of World War I: Turning a Static Collection Into a Vibrant Resource | Early American Sheet Music | Scoop.it
To mark the 100th anniversary of World War I, the authors not only digitized the museum’s collection of sheet music from the era, but they brought it back to life by synthesizing the melodies and offering the scores and the tracks online.
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Making historic  sheet music accessible to users in multiple formats is an important step forward.
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30 Hundred-Year-Old Sheet Music Covers Celebrating the Joy and Thrill of Flight

30 Hundred-Year-Old Sheet Music Covers Celebrating the Joy and Thrill of Flight | Early American Sheet Music | Scoop.it
Yes, music takes you places, and this was true 100 years ago too, when sheet music was the most widespread form of distributing popular music. And in the age of the Wright brothers, when powered flight started to gain ground, aviation became a significant theme in popular music. The following collection proves this very well.
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A feature on aviation history.

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Play Ball (and Tunes): Sheet Music from the Game's Early Days ...

Play Ball (and Tunes): Sheet Music from the Game's Early Days ... | Early American Sheet Music | Scoop.it
From celebrating championships to begging teams to stay, baseball music has a lot more than Take Me Out to the Ball Game.
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Here's a nice article from the Smithsonian for any baseball fans!

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19th-Century California Sheet Music

19th-Century California Sheet Music | Early American Sheet Music | Scoop.it

   This UCLA collection has 2,700 digital images.    Good information about different ethnic groups/cultures represented.  Also good for mining and railroad sheet music.

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The Whole Booke of Psalmes Faithfully Translated into English Metre: Whereunto is Prefixed a Discourse Declaring not Only the Lawfullness, but Also the Necessity of the Heavenly Ordinance of Singin...

The Whole Booke of Psalmes Faithfully Translated into English Metre: Whereunto is Prefixed a Discourse Declaring not Only the Lawfullness, but Also the Necessity of the Heavenly Ordinance of Singin... | Early American Sheet Music | Scoop.it

"The Bay Psalm Book, as this work is commonly known, is the first book printed in British North America."   While this 1640 imprint has no music notation, it does represent the start of music publishing in the United States.   Featured in the World Digital Library, this  is one of 4 surviving complete copies.

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African American Sheet Music

African American Sheet Music | Early American Sheet Music | Scoop.it
African American Sheet Music...

This collection is hosted by the Brown University Library Center for Digital Scholarship.   Brown University has a sheet music collection with approximately 1/2 million items, of which only a portion have been digitized.   African-Americana is one of their important subcollections.

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Historic American Sheet Music - Duke Libraries

Historic American Sheet Music - Duke Libraries | Early American Sheet Music | Scoop.it

Over 3,000 digitized images.  Nice browsing by composer, illustrator, topic, publisher, etc.   

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Thomas Moore Music Project

Thomas Moore Music Project | Early American Sheet Music | Scoop.it
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From site:  "At approximately 1000 imprints, the Gibson-Massie Thomas Moore Collection (housed in Special Collections, Queen’s University Belfast) is believed to be the largest collection of Thomas Moore ephemera, offering a near-complete coverage of Moore’s work with particular emphasis on variant editions, issues, and states of the Irish Melodies (circa 200 exemplars) as well as Lalla Rookh (circa 75 exemplars)."
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National Library's iPad app makes sweet music - ABC Online

National Library's iPad app makes sweet music - ABC Online | Early American Sheet Music | Scoop.it
National Library's iPad app makes sweet music
ABC Online
Thousands of pages of historic sheet music from the National Library of Australia in Canberra are available for the first time on mobile devices.
Vickie Kline's insight:

This isn't American sheet music, but this collection at the National Library of Australia deserves a special mention.

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Mississippi State University Libraries : Digital Collections

Mississippi State University Libraries : Digital Collections | Early American Sheet Music | Scoop.it

Charles Templetown Digital Sheet Music Collection.   Mississippi State University Libraries.    22,000 pieces.   

 

"This is one of the few collections, if not the only one, which carries through all of those changes. You started out with blues and then ragtime evolved from that, and then the Dixieland sound emerged and the big band, and from that came the forerunner of modern jazz. And the interesting part of it is that as this music evolved it progressed up the Mississippi River. Where's a better place to house this collection of music than here?"    - Charles Templeton

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UCB Libraries | Music Library | Digital Sheet Music Collection

UCB Libraries | Music Library | Digital Sheet Music Collection | Early American Sheet Music | Scoop.it

University of Colorado Digital Sheet Music Collection.  Aprox. 150,000 pieces between 1890 and 1922.

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The E. Azalia Hackley Collection - Sheet Music Collection

The E. Azalia Hackley Collection - Sheet Music Collection | Early American Sheet Music | Scoop.it

"The E. Azalia Hackley Collection was created in 1943 by a gift of material to the Detroit Public Library from the Detroit Musicians Association, a branch of the National Association of Negro Musicians. The Hackley was the first archive to document the contributions of Blacks to the performing arts.  

 

This collection of sheet music from the Hackley consists of over 600 pieces of 19th and 20th century sheet music published between 1799 and 1922. Song themes cover early 19th century plantation life in the American South, the Civil War period, including abolitionism, emancipation and Reconstruction, early 20th century popular music, and the stereotypical themes associated with black face minstrelsy. The minstrel songs of Detroit born composer Harry Von Tilzer are largely represented, as well as the songs of African American and Detroit based composers Fred Stone and Harry P. Guy. Other African American composers include: James Bland, Ernest Hogan, Cecil Mack, Shelton Brooks, Will Marion Cook, Bob Cole, James Reese Europe, Creamer & Layton, Williams & Walker, and W.C. Handy. Piano music of marches, quadrilles and other dances are also included."    

 

The original subtitle for this collection was "19th & 20th Century Sheet Music of Negro Themes"    The Library has a disclaimer that some of the images, stereotypes, and terminology used in these primary sources  are offensive to modern viewers.    Agreed.

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Civil War Sheet Music Collection (Performing Arts Encyclopedia, The Library of Congress)

Civil War Sheet Music Collection (Performing Arts Encyclopedia, The Library of Congress) | Early American Sheet Music | Scoop.it
Civil War Sheet Music Collection (Performing Arts Encyclopedia, Library of Congress). The Civil War Sheet Music Collection at the Library of Congress consists of over 2500 pieces culled from the Library's collections.
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Music for the Nation

Music for the Nation | Early American Sheet Music | Scoop.it

"Music for the Nation: American Sheet Music contains more than 62,500 pieces of historical sheet music registered for copyright.  "   This American Memory collection from the Library of Congress includes music registered from 1820-1860 and from 1870-1885.

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The Lester S. Levy Collection of Sheet Music at the Johns Hopkins University

The Lester S. Levy Collection of Sheet Music at the Johns Hopkins University | Early American Sheet Music | Scoop.it

Lester S. Levy was one of the most important early American sheet music collectors.  

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