University Bands Collection


Scope and Contents

Biographical Note

Subject Terms

Detailed Description







University of Illinois Band Films and Audiovisual Recordings

Bound Concert Programs

University of Illinois Band Videocassettes

Administrative Records

Direct Cut Discs

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Finding Aid for University Bands Collection, circa 1840-2021 | The Sousa Archives and Center for American Music

By Tracy Parish, Adriana Cuervo, Kelly A. Carlson, and William Fisher

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Collection Overview

Title: University Bands Collection, circa 1840-2021Add to your cart.View associated digital content.

ID: 12/9/93

Primary Creator: University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. University Bands

Extent: 113.5 cubic feet

Arrangement: Arranged by type of material.

Date Acquired: 09/16/2004. More info below under Accruals.

Subjects: Band Department, Brass Instruments, Chief Illiniwek, Musical Instrument Collections, Musical Instrument Makers - Europe, Musical Instrument Makers - United States, Woodwind Instruments

Formats/Genres: Papers

Languages: English

Scope and Contents of the Materials

Includes musical instruments, band uniforms, photographs, music, newsclippings, audiovisual recordings, concert programs, and administrative records that document the University of Illinois Bands Department since its creation in 1905. The 1982 Chief Illiniwek Regalia was deaccessioned in 2009. The three boxes of administrative records include band conference and clinic programs, festival adjudications, Illinois commencement programs and band concerts, Marching Illini programs, ISYM programs, and WILL Radio broadcasts that were managed by the Assistant Directors of Bands between 1956 and 1974, including Eldon Oyen who joined the University Bands staff in 1969.

Biographical Note

The University of Illinois Military Band was established in 1870 for the purpose of providing music for functions within the military department of the Illinois Industrial University. From 1868 to 1894, the band was administered by student leaders and from 1895 to 1904 was led by various university faculty members. From 1905-1907, the band was led by Albert Austin Harding, who was an undergraduate in engineering.

In 1907, Harding was named the first director of bands, serving in this role for over forty years (1907-1948) and leading the band to a position of national prominence. Under Harding, the University of Illinois band became the first band to perform at a collegiate baseball game (1906) and a collegiate football game (1907); one of the few collegiate bands to receive a march written by John Philip Sousa (1929); and a laboratory ensemble for many of Harding's mentees, which included William D. Revelli, Frederick Fennell, Clarence Sawhill, Ray Dvorak, and Glen Cliffe Bainum. In 1929, Harding became one of the founding members of the American Bandmasters Association.

In 1932, upon the death of John Philip Sousa, Sousa left his vast library of sheet music and original manuscripts in the care of the University of Illinois Band. In 1955, the Band Department had grown so large that they required a new building to be constructed. In 1958 the Harding Band Building was completed, becoming the first permanent building specifically constructed for a collegiate band program in the country.

Subsequent directors of the Band Department include: Mark H. Hindsley (1948-1970), Harry Begian (1970-1984), James F. Keene (1985-2008), Abel Saldivar Ramirez (2008-2009), Robert Rumbelow (2009-2014), Linda Moorhouse (2014-2015), Stephen Peterson (2015-2022), and Kevin Geraldi (2022- ). The University Band Department also saw the rise of several important assistant directors and directors of the Marching Illini, including: Ray Dvorak, Glen Cliffe Bainum, Clarence Sawhill, Everett Kisinger, Guy Duker, Eldon Oyen, Harvey Herman, Gary E. Smith, Ken Steinsultz, Peter Griffin, Tom Cavena, Roby George, Barry Houser, Jesse Leyva, Elizabeth Peterson, and Kimberly Fleming.

The Band Department is currently a unit of the University of Illinois School of Music, which is in turn a unit of the College of Fine and Applied Arts. Ensembles under the administration of the Band Department include the UI Wind Symphony, two symphonic bands, three concert bands, a British Brass Band, Clarinet Choir, the UI Basketball Band, the Orange & Blues and the Marching Illini.

Subject/Index Terms

Band Department
Brass Instruments
Chief Illiniwek
Musical Instrument Collections
Musical Instrument Makers - Europe
Musical Instrument Makers - United States
Woodwind Instruments

Box and Folder Listing

Browse by Series:

[Series 1: Instruments],
[Series 2: Photographs],
[Series 3: Uniforms],
[Series 4: Ephemera, 1912-2000],
[Series 5: Music],
[Series 6: Pressbooks],
[Series 7: University of Illinois Band Films and Audiovisual Recordings, 1932-2004],
[Series 8: Bound Concert Programs, 1906-1985],
[Series 9: University of Illinois Band Videocassettes, 1979-1999],
[Series 10: Administrative Records, 1956-1974],
[Series 11: Direct Cut Discs, 1937-1956],

Series 4: Ephemera, 1912-2000Add to your cart.
Box 41Add to your cart.
Folder 5: Concert Programs, ca. 1925-1958Add to your cart.
Folder 6: Advertisements, Brochures and News Clippings, ca. 1936-1999Add to your cart.
Folder 7: Correspondence, ca. 1912-2000Add to your cart.
Folder 8: Maps of Harding Band Building, ca. 1958Add to your cart.
Folder 9: Illinois Alumni News, April, 1930Add to your cart.
Folder 10: Rhythm Magazine, January, 1931Add to your cart.
Folder 11: Audio Cassette RecordingsAdd to your cart.
Item 1: A.A. Harding, ca. 1947-1958Add to your cart.
Side One: Introduction of and comments by A.A. Harding at Dedication Convocation of new Band Building, March 7, 1958.  Side Two: Presentation of Awards to A.A. Harding at Band Concert, March of 1948. A.A. Harding interview with Harold Hill on radio concerning the Sousa Museum and Library, July 17, 1947.
Item 2: Marching Illini, ca. 1980Add to your cart.
Box 70Add to your cart.
Folder 4: Spring and Commencement Concert Programs, 1980Add to your cart.
Folder 5: The Sudler Trophy certificate, presented to the University of Illinois Marching Band, 1984Add to your cart.
Folder 6: Card for Dan Maloney from His Parents Commemorating the Final Chief Performance, 2007Add to your cart.
Box 76Add to your cart.
Item 4: AAU Baton Twirling Collegiate Regional Champion plaque, presented to Julia Arciola, 2020Add to your cart.
Accession No. 2023.120993.004.
Item 1: University Bands Press Book, 1935-1958Add to your cart.
Item 2: University Bands Press Book, 1958-1970Add to your cart.
Item 3: University Bands Press Book, 1970-1975Add to your cart.
MapCabinet 3Add to your cart.
MapDrawer 1Add to your cart.
Folder 1: University Bands PostersAdd to your cart.
Folder 3: Correct Posture Chart (poster), 1938Add to your cart.
Folder 5: Map of Microphone Locations in Harding Band Building, circa 1958Add to your cart.
Folder 8: Harding Band Building Rennovation Plans and Architectural Blueprints, 2007Add to your cart.
Oversize Portfolio Case 1: Chief Illiniwek Commemorative Poster, 1986Add to your cart.
Illustrated poster of Chief Illiniwek, produced to commemorate the Chief's 60th anniversary. 2 copies; one copy signed by Michael Rose, who portrayed Chief Illiniwek from 1986-1987.
Box 79Add to your cart.
Item 1: Fighting Illini Duffle Bag with Chief Logo, UndatedAdd to your cart.
Part of plastic trim is broken. Used to carry Chief regalia. 2023.120993.005

Browse by Series:

[Series 1: Instruments],
[Series 2: Photographs],
[Series 3: Uniforms],
[Series 4: Ephemera, 1912-2000],
[Series 5: Music],
[Series 6: Pressbooks],
[Series 7: University of Illinois Band Films and Audiovisual Recordings, 1932-2004],
[Series 8: Bound Concert Programs, 1906-1985],
[Series 9: University of Illinois Band Videocassettes, 1979-1999],
[Series 10: Administrative Records, 1956-1974],
[Series 11: Direct Cut Discs, 1937-1956],

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