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Folk-Songs of America: The Robert Winslow Gordon Collection, 1922-1932

Gordon Collection Photographs

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Young Gordon and his music teacher
Gordon and his music teacher. Although he received professional instruction, Robert W. Gordon did not consider himself a musician. In his correspondence, he remarks on his inability to carry a tune--an opinion his rendering of "Charlie Snyder" (B7) does not substantiate. Bangor, Maine, ca. 1900. Photo courtesy Mr. And Mrs. Bert Nye.
Young Gordon self portrait: playing cards
A prophetic photograph. Robert W. Gordon's interest in technology emerged early. Here he appears to play cards against himself in a double exposure; Gordon also tripped the shutter. Bangor, Maine, ca. 1900. Photo courtesy Mr. And Mrs. Bert Nye.
A family outing
A family outing. While a student at Phillips Exeter Academy (1902-06), Gordon (extreme left) lived in the home of his aunt in Exeter, New Hampshire. This is apparently a photograph from those times. Note that the back row, where Gordon stands, seems to view picture taking with some ceremony. The front row, with its maidens decked in running pine, coffee pot sporting a hat, and barely suppressed youth, sets a lighter tone. Photo courtesy Mr. And Mrs. Bert Nye.
A family man
A family man. Robert W. Gordon seated with daughter Roberta (Mrs. Bert Nye) on his lap. Standing, from left to right, Gordon's mother-in-law, Mrs. Paul; wife, Roberta; mother, Harriet; and family friend Josephine Brodeur. Taken near Berkeley, California, ca. 1922. Photo courtesy Mr. And Mrs. Bert Nye.
Robert Winslow Gordon in a portrait taken in 1928, when he joined the staff of the Library of Congress as the first Head of the Archive of American Folk Song
Robert Winslow Gordon in a portrait taken in 1928, when he joined the staff of the Library of Congress as the first Head of the Archive of American Folk Song. Photo courtesy Mr. and Mrs. Bert Nye
First home of the Archive of Folk Song. Robert W. Gordon is shown here in the southwest attic of the Library of Congress building, ca. 1930.
First home of the Archive of Folk Song. Robert W. Gordon is shown here in the southwest attic of the Library of Congress building, ca. 1930. From left to right: storage of manuscripts and recorded wax cylinders, early microphone on floor stand, magnetic wire recorder on table at left rear, rotary converter ("telephone" with dial) to change the Library's DC current to AC for recording, dictaphone cylinder recording machine (Gordon operating) and, on the floor, a variety of cylinder machines and other paraphernalia. Photo from LOT 5760 in the Prints and Photographs Division of the Library of Congress.
Nancy Weaver Stikeleather, shown here with her two children
Nancy Weaver Stikeleather, shown here with her two children, was another folk music enthusiast who contributed to Gordon's research. She and her husband James (both may be heard on this LP) collected and sang songs from the Asheville locality for Gordon and other scholars. Photo courtesy of James Stikeleather, Jr.
Bascom Lunsford and Gertrude Johnson
Mountain informants, Bascom Lamar Lunsford, shown here with his accompanist, Gertrude Johnson, was a great help to Gordon's fieldwork in North Carolina. Lunsford was an active tradition bearer, an amateur collector, a performer, and the organizer of the Mountain Dance and Song Festival, the first such event in the United States. Photo courtesy of Loyal Jones.

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