The Digital Scriptorium of the Rare Book, Manuscript, and Special
Collections Library at Duke University is pleased to announce the
availability of the Historic American Sheet Music web site.  The result of
over a year of work by project staff and Duke University students, the site
includes digital images of over 16,000 pages of sheet music from 3042 pieces
published in the United States between 1850 and 1920.

The selection presents a significant perspective on American history and
culture. The sheet music chosen for digital reproduction represents a wide
variety of music types including bel canto, minstrel songs, protest songs,
sentimental  songs, patriotic and political songs, plantation songs, Civil
War songs, spirituals, dance music, songs from vaudeville and musicals, "Tin
pan alley" songs, and songs from World War I. The collection is particularly
strong in antebellum Southern music, Confederate imprints, and Civil war
songs. Also included are piano music of marches, variations, opera excerpts,
and dance music, including waltzes, quadrilles, polkas, etc.

A rich Encoded Archival Description (EAD) database of information about the
music is searchable and browsable in a variety of ways, and the site
includes background information about the music itself as well as the
social, cultural, and political events that shaped the songs and that are
depicted in the pieces.  Also included is technical information helpful to
those considering or planning digital imaging projects.

The images and database information were created as part of the Library of
Congress/Ameritech National Digital Library Competition and will become part
of the Library of Congress' American Memory site early next year.  Libraries
wishing to add this resource to their catalogs may use OCLC record

Visit the Historic American Sheet Music site at:

Stephen Miller
Project Manager, Historic American Sheet Music Project
Rare Book, Manuscript, and Special Collections Library
Duke University
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