The Smithsonian Institution Festival of American Folklife, held annually since 1967 on the National Mall in Washington, D.C., was renamed the Smithsonian Folklife Festival in 1998. The materials collected here document the planning, production, and execution of the annual Festival, produced by the Smithsonian Center for Folklife and Cultural Heritage (1999-present) and its predecessor offices (1967-1999). An overview of the entire Festival records group is available here: Smithsonian Folklife Festival records.
More than 300 reels of 16mm black and white and color film, silent and sound, fiction and documentary motion picture film documenting jazz and related musical performances, social and popular dance styles and performances, jazz musicians, performance locales, and documentation of African-American popular culture. A list of featured performers in the collection is shown below. The films are frequently compilations produced by Smith for lectures.
The Kendall Productions records date from 1952-2006 with the bulk of material dating from 1997-2004 and measure 4.42 cubic feet. The records consist of material documenting the Kendall Productions documentary Dance Party: The Teenarama Story which first aired on Howard University's PBS affiliate WHUT in 2006. The records are comprised of research and production notes, government records, newspaper articles, questionnaires, photographs, letters, and scripts, accompanied by a significant amount of original media in the following formats: VHS and Beta videocassettes, audiocassettes, and audio compact discs.
Sam DeVincent loved music and art and began collecting sheet music with lithographs at an early age. Series 16: Country, Western, and Folk Music contains approximately 11,500 pieces of sheet music and other materials documenting the development of and popular attitudes towards country, western, and folk music in the United States. An overview to the entire DeVincent collection is available here: Sam DeVincent Collection of Illustrated American Sheet Music.
The International Sweethearts of Rhythm Collection focuses on the all-female, racially and ethnically diverse big band group that started in 1937 and disbanded in 1949. The collection contains news clippings, photographs, correspondence, ephemera from USO travels, and newsletters. Also included are books related to the group, as well as a tribute CD and a 33 rpm vinyl sound recording.
The majority of the material in the Benny Carter Collection is dated from the late 1920s through the later half of the 1990s. Donated to the Smithsonian Institution in December, 2000, the bulk of the collection is comprised of original music manuscripts (full scores and parts), band books, and published sheet music from Benny Carter's prolific care...
The Fletcher and Horace Henderson Collection contains original scores and band books, loose sheet music, both original and published, from both Fletcher and Horace's libraries, playlists, lyrics, photographs, personal papers and correspondences, newspaper clippings, jazz publications, an oral history manuscript of an interview with Horace, audio ta...
The Bill Holman Collection consists of original music compositions and arrangements, posters, performance contracts and a photograph dating from 1952 to 1999. The collection is organized into two series: Series 1: Music Manuscripts; and Series 2: Photographs and Business Records.
The collection dates from 1900 to 1997 and mostly includes images taken in South Africa. The images document the peoples of South Africa, particularly the Loved, Ndebele, San, Sotho, Xhosa, and Zulu peoples. Locations photographed include Basutoland (now Lesotho), Bechuanaland (now Botswana), Johannesburg, Natal, Pretoria, Soweto, Swaziland, Transkei, Transvaal, the Umzimkulu Valley and Zululand. Manuscript and office files include clippings, correspondence, exhibition announcements, invitations and reviews, notes, essays, receipts, and other materials that document Larrabee's career, family history, and personal life.
Ella Fitzgerald, often called the "First Lady of Song," was one of the 20th century's most important musical performers. The collection reflects her career and personal life through photographs, audio recordings, and manuscript materials.