The Historic Sheet Music Collection
The UO Historic Sheet Music Collection is housed in the Douglass Audio & Video Room and consists of over 27,000 pieces of popular sheet music from the 1840s to the 1960s. This archival collection does not circulate, but may be used for research inside the Audio & Video Room by filling out a request form, available at the Audio & Video Room Desk.
There are several ways to access the contents of the Historic Sheet Music Collection:
- Access to the entire collection is provided through a printed index available at the Audio & Video Room Desk. The index includes listings by song title, publisher, composer, lyricist, cover art, subject, as well as chronological groupings by decade. This is the only complete index to the collection.
- The Online Sheet Music Index features searchable data for the vast majority of the collection (approximately 25,000 items). This text-only index allows users to search the collection by song title, composer, lyricist, subject, keyword, and year. It does not include any images, but entries do link to the Digital Sheet Music Collection for those works that have been digitized.
- The Digital Collection of Historic Sheet Music features a selection of approximately 1,000 public domain works from the UO Historic Sheet Music Collection that have been digitized and are viewable online in pdf format. Special collecting areas highlighted within the Digital Collection include the Oregon Music Collection and the Women Composers Collection.
- How to Use the Digital Collection (pdf of a PowerPoint presentation)
In order to preserve the Historic Sheet Music Collection, photocopying of pieces from the collection is not permitted. Digital prints of pages from the collection may be requested for items that are in the public domain (pre-1923); the cost for this service is $20 per item, and digitization is performed by the UO Libraries Image Services Center. Patrons may also request permission to take digital pictures of selections from the collection, provided the pieces are in the public domain. Consult music services staff for more information.
UO Library Research Tools
- Research Guide to American Popular Songs
- Finding Individual Songs and Lyrics in the UO Music Collection
- Sheet Music Resources: UO Libraries and Beyond (pdf)
- UO Women Composers Scoreography
Other Online Sheet Music Collections