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"After silence, that which comes nearest to expressing the inexpressible is music." ~ Aldous Huxley
News 708 78s Donated to UT-Austin's Historical Music Recording Collection ...     Read More
The list of institutions below includes libraries, archives, and museums with which APF works. This list is just a small fraction of all of the institutions holding sound recordings. We are always looking to begin donating recordings to more libraries, archives, and museums. If you work for one, please contact us!
To view more information about each of the institutions in the list, including recordings we donated to them, click on the name of the institution.
ARChive of Contemporary Music

The ARChive of Contemporary Music is a not-for-profit archive, music library and research center located in New York City. The ARChive collects, preserves and provides information on the popular music of all cultures and races throughout the world from 1950 to the present. Since the ARChive's founding in 1985, its holdings have grown to over 2 million sound recordings.

Archive of Recorded Sound
Stanford University

The ARS collection of 300,000 items spans sound recording history from its beginnings to the present day. Almost all formats developed to record sound are represented including wax cylinders; shellac, acetate, aluminum and vinyl discs; magnetic wire and tape recordings; and compact discs.

Archives of African American Music and Culture
Indiana University - Bloomington

Established in 1991, the Archives of African American Music and Culture (AAAMC) is a repository of materials covering a range of African American musical idioms and cultural expressions from the post-World War II era. Our collections highlight popular, religious, and classical music, with genres ranging from blues and gospel to R&B and contemporary hip hop. The AAAMC also houses extensive materials related to the documentation of black radio.

The AAAMC supports the research of scholars, students, and the general public worldwide by providing access to holdings which include oral histories, photographs, musical and print manuscripts, audio and video recordings, educational broadcast programs, and the personal papers of individuals and organizations concerned with black music. We also invite exploration of our collections and related topics through a variety of public events, print and online publications, and pedagogical resources.

Beit Hatfutsot - The Museum of the Jewish People

Beit Hatfutsot, the Museum of the Jewish People, is more than a museum. This unique global institution tells the ongoing and extraordinary story of the Jewish people. Beit Hatfutsot connects Jewish people to their roots and strengthens their personal and collective Jewish identity. Beit Hatfutsot conveys to the world the fascinating narrative of the Jewish people and the essence of the Jewish culture, faith, purpose and deed while presenting the contribution of world Jewry to humanity.

Belfer Audio Archive
Syracuse University

Founded in 1963 with a collection of 150,000 recordings held off-campus under the leadership of Walter L. Welch, the Library's archive of sound recordings and related items has grown to over 340,000 items housed in a specially designed, climate-controlled facility on campus. Currently it is the fourth largest sound archive in the country and includes formats from the earliest experimental recordings on tinfoil to modern digital media. The collection of 22,000 cylinder records is the largest held by any private institution in North America, and one of the largest in the world.

The Belfer Archive also has equipment capable of playing back all of these formats, and performs preservation, digitization, and delicate restoration work on deteriorating recordings.

Berea College Sound Archives
Berea College

Berea's non-commercial audio and video collections document Appalachian history and culture, and the history of Berea College. They are especially strong in the areas of traditional music, religious expression, spoken lore, radio programs, oral history, and College events and personalities. These collections include field recordings from homes and churches, local and regional folk festivals, student performances, presentations of notable scholars, preachers, and social activists who have visited Berea.

An ongoing digitization effort is making these audio and video recordings readily available to faculty, students, and the public in Hutchins Library's Department of Special Collections and Archives. Many of these collections have online finding aids. A large and growing sampling of traditional music audio performances are available on line through the Sound Archives search page. Performance video and complete oral history recordings are available on line as well.

BGSU Music Library and Sound Recordings Archives
Bowling Green State University

The Sound Recordings Archives, considered the nation's most comprehensive academic collection of popular sound recordings, contains more than one million recordings representing all styles of popular music and spoken word and most recorded formats. Established in 1967 for the scholarly study of popular music, the Sound Recordings Archives serves not only campus patrons, but researchers from around the world. Discographies, books, and periodicals related to popular music and the recording industry are also included in this collection. Its collection is cataloged and appears on WorldCat.

Center for Popular Music
Middle Tennessee State University

The Center for Popular Music (CPM) is a research center devoted to the study and scholarship of popular music in America. The Center maintains an archive of research materials stretching from the early eighteenth century to the present and develops and sponsors programs in vernacular music. Anyone is welcome to use the CPM’s collections and services for research and scholarly pursuits.

Center for Texas Music History / Wittliff Collections
Texas State University

The Center for Texas Music History is a program focusing on the preservation and study of Texas and Southwestern music history. It is part of the History Department at Texas State University-San Marcos. The Center's current projects include The Journal of Texas Music History, The Handbook of Texas Music, The Texas Music Oral History Program and many more.

Housed in an attractive suite of research, gallery, and office space on the 7th floor of the Albert B. Alkek Library, The Wittliff Collections - which include the Southwestern Writers Collection and the Southwestern & Mexican Photography Collection - provide access to some of the library's most unique resources and attest to the tremendous diversity of creative expression among the region's writers and photographers.

Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum

The Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum is operated by the non-profit, educational Country Music Foundation (CMF). The mission of the Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum is to identify and preserve the evolving history and traditions of country music and to educate its audiences. Functioning as a local history museum and as an international arts organization, the Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum serves visiting and non-visiting audiences including fans, students, scholars, members of the music industry.

Cylinder Preservation and Digitization Project
University of California - Santa Barbara

The UCSB Library has several major collections of cylinders. The Todd Collection consists of approximately 6,000 cylinders, ranging from brown wax to late Blue Amberols. It is especially strong in two- and four-minute Edison wax cylinders. The Blanche Browning-Rich Collection consists of approximately 1,200 Blue Amberol cylinders from unplayed dealer's inventory, acquired by the library in 2002 from the Rich family of Ogden, Utah. The collection of the late author and discographer William R. Moran is especially strong in operatic cylinders, including many Edison rarities. The Library of Congress and Bowling Green State University also contributed cylinders to the project for digitization. The Fred Williams collection consists of over 1,000 cylinders of concert and military band recordings. The Edouard Pecourt collection contains over 3,000 French cylinders. Other smaller collections of cylinders have been acquired from various donors.

With funding from the Institute of Museum and Library Services, the UCSB Libraries have created a digital collection of over 8,000 cylinder recordings held by the Department of Special Collections. In an effort to bring these recordings to a wider audience, they can be freely downloaded or streamed online.

Dolph Briscoe Center for American History
The University of Texas at Austin

Through stewardship, scholarship, and outreach, the Dolph Briscoe Center for American History increases knowledge and fosters exploration of our nation's past.

As a leading history research center, we collect, preserve, and make available documentary and material culture evidence encompassing key themes in Texas and U.S. history. Researchers, students, and the public mine our collections for a wide range of academic, professional, and personal uses. Our collections also inspire our own projects, including books, exhibits, programs, films, and educational materials. The Dolph Briscoe Center for American History is an organized research unit and public service component of The University of Texas at Austin.

Historical Music Recordings Collection
The University of Texas at Austin

The HMRC is an archive of audio recordings in all formats and serves not only the School of Music and other academic departments at The University of Texas but also the broader public in the state of Texas and beyond. Holding approximately 200,000 items, the HMRC is one of the largest such archives in the U.S.A.

Institute of Jazz Studies
Rutgers University

The Institute of Jazz Studies is the world's foremost jazz archive and research facility. It was founded in 1952 by Marshall Stearns (1908-1966), a pioneer jazz scholar. In 1966, Rutgers was chosen as the collection's permanent academic home. IJS is part of the Rutgers University Libraries, and in 1994 moved to spacious new quarters on the fourth floor of the John Cotton Dana Library on the Newark Campus. The Institute is used by students from Rutgers (especially those in the new Master's Program in Jazz History and Research) and other institutions, teachers, scholars, authors, independent researchers, musicians, the media, record companies, libraries and other archives, and arts agencies.

Library of Congress Packard Campus
Library of Congress

The Packard Campus of the National Audio-Visual Conservation Center is a state-of-the-art facility where the Library of Congress acquires, preserves and provides access to the world's largest and most comprehensive collection of films, television programs, radio broadcasts, and sound recordings. The Campus has globally unprecedented capabilities and capacities for the preservation reformatting of all audiovisual media formats (including obsolete formats dating back 100 years) and their long-term safekeeping in a petabyte-level digital storage archive. In addition to preserving the collections of the Library, the Packard Campus was also designed to provide similar preservation services for other archives and libraries in both the public and private sector.

Marr Sound Archives
University of Missouri-Kansas City

The Marr Sound Archives is home to over 300,000 sound recordings of jazz, blues, country and popular music; historic voices and authors reading their own works; vintage radio programs; classical and opera. They comprise a wide range of historic formats including LPs, 78s, 45s, cylinders, transcription discs, instantaneous-cut discs and open-reel tapes.

Mills Music Library
University of Wisconsin-Madison

Mills Music Library, a member library of the General Library System of the University of Wisconsin–Madison, is the primary resource for music materials and information on the UW campus and in the state. While our main clientele are from the UW campus community, Mills is open to the general public with appropriate identification.

Over the course of its history, Mills Music Library has grown from a 2,500-item departmental collection to a research library of more than 250,000 titles, with special collections containing an additional 250,000 items in all formats. Special strengths include Americana, musical theater, recorded sound, and ethnomusicology.

The Music Library was first located in Music Hall. The collection moved with the School of Music to the Humanities building when it opened in 1969. That space soon proved inadequate and in the early 1970s, the south basement of Memorial Library was excavated to provide for a new Music Library facility. In the summer of 1974, Mills Music Library moved to its current location, B162 Memorial Library. The facility was completely redecorated in January 2007.

The Music Library houses staff offices, open stacks, a seminar room, a special collections (Locked Case) facility, and the Audio Facility. Music Library study carrels and reading tables provide seating for about 50 users.

Recorded Sound Archives
Florida Atlantic University Libraries

The Recorded Sound Archives at Florida Atlantic University Libraries (RSA) is located in the Wimberly Library on FAU's Boca Raton campus.

Originally established in 2002 as a small project dedicated to the preservation of recorded Jewish music, it has matured into a robust digitization operation for all types of sound recordings.

Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and Museum | Library and Archives

The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and Museum, Inc. is the nonprofit organization that exists to educate visitors, fans and scholars from around the world about the history and continuing significance of rock and roll music. It carries out this mission through its operation of a world-class museum that collects, preserves, exhibits and interprets this art form and through its Library and Archives as well as its educational programs. The Library and Archives of the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and Museum is the most comprehensive repository of materials relating to the history of rock and roll, and it collects, preserves and provides access to these resources for scholars, educators, students, journalists and the general public.

Sarasota Music Archive
Selby Public Library

The Sarasota Music Archive is part of the Sarasota County Library System, and is connected to the Special Collections Department of the Selby Public Library. It is one of the leading reference collections in the field of music, containing an enviable cache of several hundred thousand recordings, tapes, sheet music, books, and memorabilia. Membership dues and private donations help to fund the archive.

Southern Folklife Collection
University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill

The Southern Folklife Collection is one of the nation's foremost archival resources for the study of American folk music and popular culture. SFC holdings extensively document all forms of southern musical and oral traditions across the entire spectrum of individual and community expressive arts, as well as mainstream media production.

Centered around the John Edwards Memorial Collection, the SFC is especially rich in materials documenting the emergence of old-time, country-western, hillbilly, bluegrass, blues, folk, gospel, rock and roll, Cajun and zydeco musics.

The SFC contains over 250,000 sound recordings, 3,000 video recordings and 8 million feet of motion picture film as well as tens of thousands of photographs, song folios, posters, manuscripts, books, serials, research files and ephemera.

Texas Music Museum

The Texas Music Museum collects and preserves artifacts, documents and reference material surrounding the diverse traditions of Texas music, and utilizes these collections in the presentation of exhibits, educational programs, and performances.

The Rodgers and Hammerstein Archives of Recorded Sound
New York Public Library

The Rodgers and Hammerstein Archives of Recorded Sound of The New York Public Library is one of the richest resources of recorded sound in the world. The aural landscape that helps define a community, a country, or a cultural era can be studied through the Archives' extraordinary holdings, which cover virtually every aspect of recorded sound-from Mozart to Maria Callas to Motown, from symphonic works to presidential speeches, from radio dramas to television specials. A vital research facility for performers, musicians, scholars, critics, and the recording industry, the collection also plays a leadership role in developing technology that allows for the transfer of sound from obsolete to accessible formats. Through special recording projects-often pursued cooperatively with other archives and record companies-the Archives' collection and preservation efforts ensure that the spoken and musical sounds of the century will resonate for current and future generations.

The scope of the collection draws users from many disciplines: critics comparing multiple recordings of a musical selection, opera singers preparing unfamiliar roles, instrumentalists studying a new piece before first rehearsal, actors preparing for auditions by studying dialect tapes or musical theatre recordings, filmmakers in search of topical songs for soundtracks, and performing groups in search of new repertory. Rare items such as pre-Glasnost underground videos of Russian rock groups, Fiorello La Guardia's Talks to the People radio broadcasts, and recordings of famed black vaudevillian Bert Williams draw researchers and historians from many fields.

The Archives contains approximately 700,000 recordings and more than 100,000 printed items.

Thomas Edison National Historic Park
National Park Service

At the corner of Main Street and Lakeside Avenue in West Orange, New Jersey stands a group of red brick buildings. To the passing motorist the buildings betray little evidence of their glory days and of the people who worked inside. A short distance away is Glenmont, Thomas Edison's estate. Together, the laboratory and residence preserve the work and character of America's foremost inventor, Thomas Edison and the family, friends and business associates who played a key role in his success.

UCLA Music Library
University of California-Los Angeles

The Music Library serves as the center for music research, study, and enjoyment at UCLA. Its collections and services support the UCLA Herb Alpert School of Music and the music community of Southern California. Special collections and archives are housed in UCLA Library Special Collections. The Ethnomusicology Archive collects recordings and video of world music.

University of Notre Dame Archives
University of Notre Dame

The University Archivist bears the responsibility, by appointment of the President and under the supervision of the Office of the Provost, for the collection and maintenance of the official records and papers of the University as well as other documents of enduring historical value.

The University Archives collects, preserves, and makes accessible the official records of the University of Notre Dame. This historically valuable material documents the academic and administrative responsibilities of the University as well as the experiences of its students, alumni, officers, faculty, staff, and benefactors.

In addition, the University Archives, through its records management program, provides record retention and retrieval services to campus offices. This program ensures that historically valuable records are identified for permanent retention in the Archives and that documents with no historical significance are appropriately destroyed after there is no continuing administrative, fiscal, or legal need for their retention.

The Archives also collects and maintains records, papers, photographs, printed material, and audio-visual material that document the life of the Catholic Church and her people as lived in the American context, and is recognized as one of the nation's foremost archival repositories for the study of American Catholicism. The Archives has collected these materials since the nineteenth century, and the availability of these important scholarly resources at Notre Dame is a major contribution to the academic mission of the University.

UNT Music Library
University of North Texas

The UNT Music Library - one of the largest academic music collections in the United States - contains over 300,000 volumes of books, periodicals, scores, dissertations, and reference works in many languages, as well as nearly 900,000 sound recordings in a variety of formats, including cylinders, reel-to-reel tapes, 45/33/78rpm records, compact discs, and digital tape recordings. Playback equipment for the different types of recordings (as well as a growing VHS and DVD collection) is in the Audio Center, and in-house transfers of older audio formats are performed in the preservation studio.

USC Music Library
University of South Carolina

Located on the second and third levels of the USC School of Music, the Music Library's collection is one of the largest in the southeast, containing books and scores, print and electronic journals, audio and video recordings, and special collections. Patrons can check out circulating audio and video recordings, and twelve carrels are equipped for in-house viewing and listening. Electronic resources include International Index to Music Periodicals, RILM, RIPM, Oxford Music Online (Grove), DRAM, and Naxos Music Library, the 24-hour online listening service.

Vermont Folklife Center

The Vermont Folklife Center, founded in 1984, is dedicated to preserving and presenting the cultural traditions of Vermont and the surrounding region. Through ongoing field research, a multimedia archive and an apprenticeship program, we document and conserve cultural heritage which could easily be lost; through exhibits, media, publication and educational projects, we bring recognition to the skills, talents and traditions of Vermonters, past and present. The Center has made preservation of the spoken word the core of its endeavors, and the VFC archive now comprises over 4.500 taped interviews, which have been transcribed and electronically indexed.

© 2009 - 2018 by the Audio Preservation Fund