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Frederick and Mary Hill Fried Folk Art Archives

Creator:
Fried, Frederick, 1909-1994  Search this
National Carousel Association.  Search this
Fried, Mary Hill  Search this
Extent:
36 Cubic feet (89 boxes, 10 map-folders)
Type:
Collection descriptions
Archival materials
Photographs
Advertisements
Clippings
Blueprints
Books
Auction catalogs
Design drawings
Date:
circa 1662-1999, undated
Scope and Contents:
Collection primarily documents American folk art collected by Frederick Fried (1908-1994) and his wife Mary McKensie Hill Fried (1914-1988). It includes photographic materials, newspaper clippings, magazine articles, research files, lecture notes, unpublished manuscripts, brochures, drawings, printed advertisements, blueprints, books, patents, correspondence, trade literature, sheet music, auction catalogs, oral history interviews, and commercially recorded music. Of particular interest is the material relating to carousels. There is a substantial amount of material relating to New York architecture, wood carvings, show figures, weathervanes, mechanical and coin operated machines, amusement parks, the circus, tattoos and lesser-known folk arts. The collection is arranged by subject or genre in the order maintained by Frederick and Mary Fried.
Arrangement:
Series 1, Professional Materials, 1930-1995, undated

Subseries 1.1, Lectures, 1968-1989, undated

Subseries 1.2, Research Notes, 1962-1975, undated

Subseries 1.3, Published and Unpublished Materials, 1960-1990, undated

Subseries 1.4, Exhibitions, 1966-1985, undated

Subseries 1.5, Correspondence, 1945-1995, undated

Subseries 1.6, Office Files, 1930-1991, undated

Series 2, Sculptors and Ship Carvers, 1855-1987, undated

Series 3, Ship Carving Reference Files, 1875-1990, undated

Series 4, Show Figures, 1847-1989, undated

Subseries 4.1, Carvers, 1847-1987, undated

Subseries 4.2, Reference Files, 1864-1989, undated

Series 5: Carousels, 1851-1999, undated

Subseries 5.1, Reference Files, 1851-1990, undated

Subseries 5.2, Manufacturerst, 1854-1999, undated

Subseries 5.3, Carvers, undated

Subseries 5.4, Foreign, 1902, undated

Subseries 5.5, Organizations, 1974-1991, undated

Subseries 5.6, Museum Collections, 1959-1989, undated

Series 5.7, Sites, 1962-1991, undated

Series 6, Charles W. Parker Company, 1904-1905; 1922-1924, undated

Subseries 6.1, Glass Plate Negatives, 6x8, 1904-1905, undated

Subseries 6.2, Glass Plate Negatives, 8x10, 1922-1924, undated

Series 7, Amusements Parks, 1917-1992, undated

Series 8, Amusement Industry, 1662-1994, undated

Subseries 8.1, Companies, 1903, undated

Subseries 8.2, Reference Files, 1662-1994, undated

Series 9, Circus, 1902-1992, undated

Series 10, Architectural Ornaments, 1832-1988, undated

Subseries 10.1, Residential Architecture, 1899-1985, undated

Subseries 10.2, New York City Municipal Parks, 1968-1988, undated

Subseries 10.3, South Street Seaport, 1965-1970, undated

Subseries 10.4, New York Civic Sculpture, 1832-1977, undated

Subseries 10.5, Architectural Ornamentation, 1873-1985, undated

Series 11, Weathervanes, 1854-1981, undated

Series 12, Automatic, Coin Operated and Vending Machines, 1960-1980, undated

Series 13, Banner Paintings and Painters, 1892-1999, undated

Series 14, Folk Arts, 1783-1999, undated

Subseries 14.1, Reference Files, 1831-1988, undated

Subseries 14.2, Clocks and Watches, 1869-1876; 1976, undated

Subseries 14.3, Eagles, 1843-1989, undated

Subseries 14.4, Musical Instruments, 1963-1999, undated

Subseries 14.5, Painters and Paintings, 1950-1990, undated

Subseries 14.6, Signs and Symbols, 1974, 1976, undated

Subseries 14.7, Other Materials, 1872-1988, undated

Subseries 14.8, Miscellaneous, 1783-1954, undated

Series 15: Photographic Materials, 1832-1988, undated

Subseries 15.1, Photographs and Contact Sheets, 1940-1984, undated

Subseries 15.1.1, America's Forgotten Arts, undated

Subseries 15.1.2, Artists in Wood, undated

Subseries 15.1.3, General, 1940-1984, undated

Subseries 15.2, Slides, 1832-1987, undated

Subseries 15.3, Negatives, undated

Subseries 15.4, Glass Plate Negatives, undated

Subseries 15.5, Snapshots, 1964-1988, undated

Subseries 15.5.1, Artists, Manufacturers, and Dealers, undated

Subseries 15.5.2, Museum Collections, 1964, undated

Subseries 15.5.3, Parks or Other Locations, undated

Subseries 15.5.4, Private Collections, 1987-1988, undated

Subseries 15.5.5, General, 1983-1988, undated

Series 16, Audiovisual Materials, 1940-1991, undated

Subseries 16.1, Audiocassette Tapes, 1971-1988, undated

Subseries 16.1.1, Lectures, 1974-1986, undated

Subseries 16.1.2, Interviews, 1971-1984, undated

Subseries 16.1.3, Music, 1972-1988, undated

Subseries 16.2, Audiotapes, 1940-1977, undated

Subseries 16.2.1, Lectures and Performances, 1969-1973, undated

Subseries 16.2.2, Interviews, 1940-1976, undated

Subseries 16.2.3, Conferences and Meetings, 1973-1977

Subseries 16.2.4, Music, 1956, undated

Subseries 16.2.5, Other, undated

Subseries 16.3, Videotapes, 1982-1991, undated
Biographical / Historical:
Frederick P. Fried was born December 11, 1908 in Brooklyn, New York. He grew up in the Williamsburg section of Brooklyn where his father owned a clock business across the street from Charles Carmel, a carousel carver. Fried acquired a fine-arts education in the 1930s with an emphasis on sculpture. He served with the Air Force during the Second World War. After a successful military career, Fried worked as art director in several fashion agencies. He met Mary McKenzie Hill, an academically trained artist in one of the studios.

Mary McKenzie Hill was born in 1914 in Baltimore, Maryland. She graduated from the Maryland Institute of Fine Arts. After graduation, she spent a year abroad studying before she returned to the United States to work as a fashion illustrator in Baltimore and New York. During World War Two Hill was a draftsman for a firm of architects.

Fried and Mary Hill married in 1949. The couple had two children Robert Hazen and Rachel. Around 1953 Fried began to collect architectural ornaments in New York. Fried served as the art director for Bonwit Teller in New York City from 1955-1962. He left the fashion world in 1962 to pursue his passion for collecting and writing full time. Fried published his first book, Pictorial History of Carousels in 1964. In 1967, Fred and Mary Fried purchased a forty-acre farm in Bristol, Vermont where the family spent their summers.

In 1968, Fried led a national campaign to preserve the Titanic Memorial Lighthouse (Seamen's Church Institute at South Street). He also became active in politics and served as the campaign manager for a New York State senator. His interest in Indian cigar store figures resulted in his publication Artists in Wood: American Carvers of Cigar Store Indians, Show Figures and Circus published in 1970. The focus of the book was Samuel Anderson Robb a New York wood carver. Fried co-founded the National Carousel Association in 1973. In 1978, Fried wrote America's Forgotten Folk Art with his wife Mary. This publication covered subjects such as carousels, banner painting, scarecrows, beach sand sculpture, tattoos, cast iron toys, amusement park architecture and trade signs.

Fried's collecting goal was to first preserve artifacts and to then make them available through his writings and exhibitions. His most treasured relics were the items he salvaged from the ruins of Coney Island. Fried referred to such artifacts as the uncelebrated arts. He became one of the founders of the Anonymous Arts Recovery Society a group of individuals who saved architectural ornaments from the wreckers' balls. In addition, he was one of the founders of the National Carousel Round Table which was created to preserve hand-carved merry-go-rounds. As a result of his collecting, research and writing Fried became recognized as the authority on carousels, coin-operated machines, and cigar store figures. He served as a consultant to many Museums; in particular as chief consultant on American Folk Art for the Smithsonian Institution.

Frederick and Mary Hill worked together in many ways to document, collect, preserve and increase the awareness about primarily the folk arts. Mary McKenzie Hill Fried passed away in 1988 at the age of seventy-four. Frederick P. Fried died July 1994 at the age of eighty-six.
Related Materials:
Materials in the Archives Center, National Museum of American History

E. Howard Clock Company Records (NMAH.AC.00776)

M. Francis Misklea Carousel Collection (NMAH.AC.0665)

Archives Center Carousel Collection (NMAH.AC.0675)

Messmore and Damon, Incorporated Company Records (NMAH.AC.0846)

Anthony W. Pendergast Collection (NMAH.AC.0882)

Frank Paulin Photoprints (NMAH.AC.1373)

Wurlitzer Company Records (NMAH.AC.0469)

Industry on Parade (NMAH.AC.0507)

Reel #191, Craftsmen of the Carousel, 1954. Manufacturing merry-go-rounds for amusement reports. Arrow Development Co., Mountain View, California.
Provenance:
Collection a bequest of the Frederick Fried Estate.
Rights:
Reproduction restricted due to copyright or trademark. Fees for commercial reproduction.
Occupation:
Wood-carvers  Search this
Topic:
Periodicals  Search this
Merry-go-round art  Search this
Signs and signboards  Search this
Weather vanes  Search this
Coin-operated machines  Search this
Architecture -- Details  Search this
Amusement ride equipment industry  Search this
Amusement rides  Search this
Folk art  Search this
Merry-go-round  Search this
Figure sculpture -- United States  Search this
Genre/Form:
Photographs -- 20th century
Advertisements
Clippings
Blueprints -- 20th century
Books
Auction catalogs
Design drawings
Citation:
Frederick and Mary Hill Fried Folk Art Archives, circa 1662-1999, Archives Center, National Museum of American History
Identifier:
NMAH.AC.0528
See more items in:
Frederick and Mary Hill Fried Folk Art Archives
Archival Repository:
Archives Center, National Museum of American History
EDAN-URL:
ead_collection:sova-nmah-ac-0528
Online Media:

Automatic, Coin Operated, and Vending Machines

Collection Creator:
Fried, Frederick, 1909-1994  Search this
National Carousel Association.  Search this
Fried, Mary Hill  Search this
Type:
Archival materials
Date:
1960-1980, undated
Scope and Contents:
Materials maintained as a group consisting of articles, images, draft manuscripts, publications, and research notes relating to coin-operated machines, automatic machines, novelty banks, arcade machines, and vending machines. Materials are arranged in alphabetical order by subject.
Collection Rights:
Reproduction restricted due to copyright or trademark. Fees for commercial reproduction.
Collection Citation:
Frederick and Mary Hill Fried Folk Art Archives, circa 1662-1999, Archives Center, National Museum of American History
Identifier:
NMAH.AC.0528, Series 12
See more items in:
Frederick and Mary Hill Fried Folk Art Archives
Archival Repository:
Archives Center, National Museum of American History
EDAN-URL:
ead_component:sova-nmah-ac-0528-ref1956

Article, "Mechanical and Coin Operated Machines," Fortune, 1963

Collection Creator:
Fried, Frederick, 1909-1994  Search this
National Carousel Association.  Search this
Fried, Mary Hill  Search this
Container:
Box 85, Folder 1
Type:
Archival materials
Collection Rights:
Reproduction restricted due to copyright or trademark. Fees for commercial reproduction.
Collection Citation:
Frederick and Mary Hill Fried Folk Art Archives, circa 1662-1999, Archives Center, National Museum of American History
See more items in:
Frederick and Mary Hill Fried Folk Art Archives
Frederick and Mary Hill Fried Folk Art Archives / Series 12: Automatic, Coin Operated, and Vending Machines
Archival Repository:
Archives Center, National Museum of American History
EDAN-URL:
ead_component:sova-nmah-ac-0528-ref1957

Purchase of coin-operated machines

Collection Creator:
Fried, Frederick, 1909-1994  Search this
National Carousel Association.  Search this
Fried, Mary Hill  Search this
Container:
Box 37, Folder 15
Type:
Archival materials
Date:
1972-1973, undated
Collection Rights:
Reproduction restricted due to copyright or trademark. Fees for commercial reproduction.
Collection Citation:
Frederick and Mary Hill Fried Folk Art Archives, circa 1662-1999, Archives Center, National Museum of American History
See more items in:
Frederick and Mary Hill Fried Folk Art Archives
Frederick and Mary Hill Fried Folk Art Archives / Series 12: Automatic, Coin Operated, and Vending Machines
Archival Repository:
Archives Center, National Museum of American History
EDAN-URL:
ead_component:sova-nmah-ac-0528-ref1958

Images, coin operated machines

Collection Creator:
Fried, Frederick, 1909-1994  Search this
National Carousel Association.  Search this
Fried, Mary Hill  Search this
Container:
Box 37, Folder 17
Type:
Archival materials
Date:
undated
Collection Rights:
Reproduction restricted due to copyright or trademark. Fees for commercial reproduction.
Collection Citation:
Frederick and Mary Hill Fried Folk Art Archives, circa 1662-1999, Archives Center, National Museum of American History
See more items in:
Frederick and Mary Hill Fried Folk Art Archives
Frederick and Mary Hill Fried Folk Art Archives / Series 12: Automatic, Coin Operated, and Vending Machines
Archival Repository:
Archives Center, National Museum of American History
EDAN-URL:
ead_component:sova-nmah-ac-0528-ref1960

Publication, Coin Machine Book: An Encyclopedia of American Antique Coin Operated Machines, "Pinball Machines," draft by Fried, volume two

Collection Creator:
Fried, Frederick, 1909-1994  Search this
National Carousel Association.  Search this
Fried, Mary Hill  Search this
Container:
Box 38, Folder 1
Type:
Archival materials
Date:
1977
Collection Rights:
Reproduction restricted due to copyright or trademark. Fees for commercial reproduction.
Collection Citation:
Frederick and Mary Hill Fried Folk Art Archives, circa 1662-1999, Archives Center, National Museum of American History
See more items in:
Frederick and Mary Hill Fried Folk Art Archives
Frederick and Mary Hill Fried Folk Art Archives / Series 12: Automatic, Coin Operated, and Vending Machines
Archival Repository:
Archives Center, National Museum of American History
EDAN-URL:
ead_component:sova-nmah-ac-0528-ref1964

Publication, Coin Machine Book: An Encyclopedia of American Antique Coin Operated Machines, "Biographical Section," draft by Fried, volume two

Collection Creator:
Fried, Frederick, 1909-1994  Search this
National Carousel Association.  Search this
Fried, Mary Hill  Search this
Container:
Box 38, Folder 2
Type:
Archival materials
Date:
1977
Collection Rights:
Reproduction restricted due to copyright or trademark. Fees for commercial reproduction.
Collection Citation:
Frederick and Mary Hill Fried Folk Art Archives, circa 1662-1999, Archives Center, National Museum of American History
See more items in:
Frederick and Mary Hill Fried Folk Art Archives
Frederick and Mary Hill Fried Folk Art Archives / Series 12: Automatic, Coin Operated, and Vending Machines
Archival Repository:
Archives Center, National Museum of American History
EDAN-URL:
ead_component:sova-nmah-ac-0528-ref1965

Publication, Coin Machine Book: An Encyclopedia of American Antique Coin Operated Machines, "Amusement Machines," draft by Fried, volume two

Collection Creator:
Fried, Frederick, 1909-1994  Search this
National Carousel Association.  Search this
Fried, Mary Hill  Search this
Container:
Box 38, Folder 3
Type:
Archival materials
Date:
1977
Collection Rights:
Reproduction restricted due to copyright or trademark. Fees for commercial reproduction.
Collection Citation:
Frederick and Mary Hill Fried Folk Art Archives, circa 1662-1999, Archives Center, National Museum of American History
See more items in:
Frederick and Mary Hill Fried Folk Art Archives
Frederick and Mary Hill Fried Folk Art Archives / Series 12: Automatic, Coin Operated, and Vending Machines
Archival Repository:
Archives Center, National Museum of American History
EDAN-URL:
ead_component:sova-nmah-ac-0528-ref1966

Publication, Encyclopedia of American Antique Coin Operated Machines, "Vending and Service Machines," draft by Fried, volume one, 1977, pages 1-84

Collection Creator:
Fried, Frederick, 1909-1994  Search this
National Carousel Association.  Search this
Fried, Mary Hill  Search this
Container:
Box 38, Folder 4
Type:
Archival materials
Collection Rights:
Reproduction restricted due to copyright or trademark. Fees for commercial reproduction.
Collection Citation:
Frederick and Mary Hill Fried Folk Art Archives, circa 1662-1999, Archives Center, National Museum of American History
See more items in:
Frederick and Mary Hill Fried Folk Art Archives
Frederick and Mary Hill Fried Folk Art Archives / Series 12: Automatic, Coin Operated, and Vending Machines
Archival Repository:
Archives Center, National Museum of American History
EDAN-URL:
ead_component:sova-nmah-ac-0528-ref1967

Publication, Encyclopedia of American Antique Coin Operated Machines, Vending and Service Machines," draft by Fried, volume one, 1977, pages 85-288

Collection Creator:
Fried, Frederick, 1909-1994  Search this
National Carousel Association.  Search this
Fried, Mary Hill  Search this
Container:
Box 38, Folder 5
Type:
Archival materials
Collection Rights:
Reproduction restricted due to copyright or trademark. Fees for commercial reproduction.
Collection Citation:
Frederick and Mary Hill Fried Folk Art Archives, circa 1662-1999, Archives Center, National Museum of American History
See more items in:
Frederick and Mary Hill Fried Folk Art Archives
Frederick and Mary Hill Fried Folk Art Archives / Series 12: Automatic, Coin Operated, and Vending Machines
Archival Repository:
Archives Center, National Museum of American History
EDAN-URL:
ead_component:sova-nmah-ac-0528-ref1968

Negatives

Collection Creator:
Fried, Frederick, 1909-1994  Search this
National Carousel Association.  Search this
Fried, Mary Hill  Search this
Type:
Archival materials
Date:
undated
Scope and Contents:
Consists of black and white and color images documenting amusement parks, architecture, coin operated machines, banner paintings, carousels, carved figures, circus, clocks, murals, painted screens, roller coasters, sand sculpture, signs, symbols, tattoos, and weathervanes. Materials are arranged in alphabetical order by subject.
Collection Rights:
Reproduction restricted due to copyright or trademark. Fees for commercial reproduction.
Collection Citation:
Frederick and Mary Hill Fried Folk Art Archives, circa 1662-1999, Archives Center, National Museum of American History
See more items in:
Frederick and Mary Hill Fried Folk Art Archives
Frederick and Mary Hill Fried Folk Art Archives / Series 15: Photographic Materials / 15.4: Slides
Archival Repository:
Archives Center, National Museum of American History
EDAN-URL:
ead_component:sova-nmah-ac-0528-ref2897

Lectures

Collection Creator:
Fried, Frederick, 1909-1994  Search this
National Carousel Association.  Search this
Fried, Mary Hill  Search this
Type:
Archival materials
Date:
1968-1989, undated
Scope and Contents:
Relates to research topics including cigar store Indians, American folk art, show figures, circus carvings, amusement devices, amusement parks, wood carvers, carousel animals, coin operated machines, figureheads, furniture, decorative arts, and weathervanes. The lectures were presented for cultural institutions in the United States including Shelburne Museum, Shelburne, Vermont; South Street Seaport Museum, New York, New York; Robert Hall Fleming Museum, University of Vermont, Burlington, Vermont; Ringling Circus Museum, Saratoga, Florida; Heritage Plantation of Sandwich, Sandwich, Massachusetts; Islip Art Museum, East Islip, New York; Museum of American Folk Arts, New York University, New York; and the National Trust for Historic Preservation. Materials are arranged in alphabetical order by subject.
Collection Rights:
Reproduction restricted due to copyright or trademark. Fees for commercial reproduction.
Collection Citation:
Frederick and Mary Hill Fried Folk Art Archives, circa 1662-1999, Archives Center, National Museum of American History
Identifier:
NMAH.AC.0528, Subseries 1.1
See more items in:
Frederick and Mary Hill Fried Folk Art Archives
Frederick and Mary Hill Fried Folk Art Archives / Series 1: Professional Materials
Archival Repository:
Archives Center, National Museum of American History
EDAN-URL:
ead_component:sova-nmah-ac-0528-ref940

"Coin Operated Machines"

Collection Creator:
Fried, Frederick, 1909-1994  Search this
National Carousel Association.  Search this
Fried, Mary Hill  Search this
Container:
Box 1, Folder 17
Type:
Archival materials
Date:
undated
Collection Rights:
Reproduction restricted due to copyright or trademark. Fees for commercial reproduction.
Collection Citation:
Frederick and Mary Hill Fried Folk Art Archives, circa 1662-1999, Archives Center, National Museum of American History
See more items in:
Frederick and Mary Hill Fried Folk Art Archives
Frederick and Mary Hill Fried Folk Art Archives / Series 1: Professional Materials / 1.1: Lectures
Archival Repository:
Archives Center, National Museum of American History
EDAN-URL:
ead_component:sova-nmah-ac-0528-ref957

Wurlitzer Company Records

Creator:
Rudolph Wurlitzer Company  Search this
Names:
All-American Mohawk Company  Search this
Apollo Piano Company  Search this
Beach-Carlisle Violin Company  Search this
Caldwell Piano Company  Search this
Central Discount Company  Search this
Dayton Photo Products Company  Search this
DeKalb Piano Company  Search this
Dekleist Musical Instruments Company  Search this
Deutsch Wurlitzer  Search this
Eagle Radio Company  Search this
Everett Piano Company  Search this
Fox Theatres Corporation  Search this
Lyric Piano Company  Search this
Milner Music Company  Search this
Morsatti, Inc.  Search this
North Tonawanda Barrel Organ Company  Search this
Robert L. Loud Music Company  Search this
Rudolph Wurlitzer Company  Search this
Southern Ohio Radio Corporation  Search this
Western Industries Corporation  Search this
Wunderlich Piano Company  Search this
Wurlbild Corporation  Search this
Wurlitzer Acceptance Corporation  Search this
Wurlitzer Company  Search this
Wurlitzer Company of California  Search this
Wurlitzer Grand Piano Company  Search this
Youngstown Music Company  Search this
Rolfing, R.C.  Search this
Wurlitzer, Farny  Search this
Wurlitzer, Rembert  Search this
Wurlitzer, Rudolph  Search this
Extent:
56 Cubic feet
Type:
Collection descriptions
Archival materials
Minute books
Account books
Financial records
Stock records
Reports
Advertisements
Sales records
Audits
Cashbooks
Ledgers (account books)
Annual reports
Photographs
Journals (accounts)
Price lists
Trade catalogs
Publications
Employee records
Marketing records
Commercial catalogs
Place:
DeKalb (Ill.)
North Tonawanda (N.Y.)
Corinth (Miss.)
Cincinnati (Ohio)
Date:
1860-1984
Summary:
The collection documents the history and development of the Wurlitzer Company and consists of company publications, business records, employee files, manufacturing records, sales and marketing records, product information, publicity, advertising, photographs, audiovisual materials, and organ installation drawings.
Scope and Contents:
The collection documents the history and the development of the Wurlitzer Company. Materials include company publications, business records, employee files, manufacturing records, sales and marketing records, product information, publicity, advertising, photographs, audiovisual materials, and organ installation drawings. The material in the collection spans from 1856-1986, although information prior to 1899 is sparse.
Arrangement:
The Collection is arranged into fourteen series.

Series 1: Wurlitzer Company Histories, Company Events, and General Business Materials, circa 1880-1987; undated

Series 2: Publications, 1910-1989; undated

Series 3: Advertising and Promotional Materials, 1911-1978

Series 4: Product Information, 1860-1984; undated

Series 5: Photographs of Wurlitzer Manufacturing Plants, Employees, Stores, and Dealerships, 1869-1970; undated

Series 6: Photographs of Wurlitzer Products and Product Sales Promotions, 1900-1978; undated

Series 7, Photographs Used in Wurlitzer Advertising and Public Relations, 1904-1970; undated

Series 8: Wurlitzer Employee Records and Related Materials, 1909-1961; undated

Series 9: Production and Shipping Records, 1905-1987

Series 10: Shipping and Sales Records for Wurlitzer Dealerships, Wurlitzer Retail Stores, and Rembert Wurlitzer, Incorporated, 1917-1952

Series 11, Records of Stock Certificates, Meeting Minutes, and Related Financial and Legal Documents, 1907-1972

Series 12, Rudolph Wurlitzer Company Financial Records, 1893-1986

Series 13, Maps and Charts, 1931-1976

Series 14, Organ Installation Drawings, 1920-1931; undated
Historical Note:
The Wurlitzer Company began in 1856 when Rudolph Wurlitzer, a Cincinnati bank clerk, sold seven hundred dollars worth of musical instruments he had bought from family and friends in Germany. The busi¬ness was incorporated in Ohio in 1890 under the name the Ru¬dolph Wurlitzer Company." For the first fifty years, Wurlitzer was primarily a retail instrument business operating out of its Cincinnati Store headquarters. Although fire destroyed the com¬pany's headquarters in 1904, a new building was completed in time to celebrate Wurlitzer's fiftieth anniversary in 1906.

In 1908, the Wurlitzer Company bought the DeKleist Musical In¬strument Manufacturing Company in North Tonawanda, New York. The Rudolph Wurlitzer Manufacturing Company continued produc¬tion of automatic musical instruments including player pianos, military bands and pianorchestras. In 1910, the Wurlitzer Company bought the Hope-Jones Organ Company and began to manufacture unit-or¬chestra pipe organs at their North Tonawanda plant. These were pipe organs equipped with bells, gongs, horns and sirens. They became known as Mighty Wurlitzers and provided the musical back¬ground in silent movie houses all over the world and were also built for churches and private homes. In 1919, Wurlitzer bought the Melville-Clark Piano Company of DeKalb, Illinois. Wurlitzer pianos were then manufactured at the DeKalb facilities under a variety of names: the Apollo Piano Company, the DeKalb Piano Company and the Wurlitzer Grand Piano Company. Each name des¬ignated a different quality, price range and style.

With the decline of sales during the 1920s and 1930s, pro¬duction of automatic musical instruments ceased until the manu¬facture of the first jukebox in 1934. In 1930, the Julius Bauer Piano Company was purchased and continued to build pianos in that name until shortly before World War II. For a brief time, radios and refrigerators were made by the Wurlitzer controlled Air-Amer¬ican Mohawk Corporation. It was not a successful venture and ended in the mid-1930s. Many of the Wurlitzer retail stores were, at that time, in bad locations and needed repairs. The solutions to these problems came about with a reorganization of the company in 1935. With the reorganization, many retail stores were sold, piano manufacturing was consolidated in DeKalb and many subsidiaries were dissolved or absorbed completely into the Wurlitzer Company.

During World War II, Wurlitzer halted production of musical in¬struments. The company's defense production efforts were rec¬ognized in 1943 and 1944 when it is North Tonawanda and DeKalb plants received the Army-Navy "E" Award. In 1946, peacetime production resumed and the Wurlitzer Company introduced two new instruments: the electric organ in 1947 and the electric piano in 1954. In 1956, the Wurlitzer Company celebrated its centennial. That same year a new plant at Corinth, Mississippi, was completed. Later, plants were opened in Holly Springs, Mississippi (1961), Logan, Utah (1970) and Hullhorst, West Germany, (1960). The new facilities replaced those at North Tonawanda and DeKalb. The North Tonawanda plant ceased production of jukeboxes in 1974, becoming the company's engineering and research center. In 1973, the DeKalb plant ended production of pianos maintaining only mar¬keting and administrative offices. In 1977, the Wurlitzer Com¬pany's corporate headquarters moved to DeKalb, including the en¬gineering and research center from North Tonawanda.

Wurlitzer's three sons had assumed leadership of the company after his death in 1914. Each son acted as president then, chair of the board, successively. The company hired R.C. Rolfing in 1934 as vice-president and general manager. His re¬organization helped the company through the Depression years. Rolfing succeeded the last of the founder's sons in 1941 as pres¬ident of the company and in 1966 as chair of the board. Farny Wurlitzer, Rudolph's youngest son, died in 1972. A.D. Arsem succeeded Rolfing in 1974 as chair of the board. George B. Howell succeeded W. N. Herleman as president of the company.
Related Materials:
Materials in the Archives Center

Steinway & Sons Records and Family Papers, 1857-1919 (AC0178)

Chickering & Sons Piano Company Collection, 1864-1985 (AC0264)

Sohmer & Company Records, 1872-1989 (AC0349)

William J. Lenz Piano Tuning Collection, circa 1903-1955 (AC0511)

Janssen Piano Company Records, 1901-1929 (AC0512)

John R. Anderson Piano Trade Literature and Ephemera Collection, circa 1850-1990 (AC1257)

Warshaw Collection of Business America's Piano and Organ related materials (AC0060)
Provenance:
Collection donated by Northern Illinois University, and Regional History Center, 1994, November 11.
Restrictions:
Collection is open for research.
Rights:
Collection items available for reproduction, but the Archives Center makes no guarantees concerning copyright restrictions. Other intellectual property rights may apply. Archives Center cost-recovery and use fees may apply when requesting reproductions.
Topic:
Violin -- Manufacture  Search this
Radio -- Receivers and reception  Search this
Coin-operated machines  Search this
Accordion  Search this
Jukeboxes -- Manufacture  Search this
Harp -- Manufacture  Search this
Piano -- History  Search this
Player organ  Search this
Accordion -- Manufacture  Search this
Piano makers  Search this
Organ -- Manufacture  Search this
Organ -- History  Search this
Wurlitzer organ  Search this
Musical instrument makers  Search this
Mechanical organs  Search this
Mechanical musical instruments  Search this
Musical instruments  Search this
Genre/Form:
Minute books
Account books
Financial records
Stock records
Reports
Advertisements
Sales records
Audits
Cashbooks
Ledgers (account books)
Annual reports
Photographs -- 19th century
Journals (accounts)
Price lists
Trade catalogs
Publications
Employee records
Marketing records
Commercial catalogs
Citation:
Wurlitzer Company Records, 1860-1984, Archives Center, National Museum of American History
Identifier:
NMAH.AC.0469
See more items in:
Wurlitzer Company Records
Archival Repository:
Archives Center, National Museum of American History
EDAN-URL:
ead_collection:sova-nmah-ac-0469
Online Media:

Air Transport Association of America, ATA Airport Affairs Memorandum No. 67-28, "FAA Draft Advisory Circular AC-150/2510, Airport Tenantry Ground Safety Standards"

Collection Creator:
Wheatland, Richard, II, 1923-2009  Search this
Container:
Box 6, Folder 2
Type:
Archival materials
Date:
November 20, 1967
Collection Restrictions:
No restrictions on access
Collection Rights:
Material is subject to Smithsonian Terms of Use. Should you wish to use NASM material in any medium, please submit an Application for Permission to Reproduce NASM Material, available at Permissions Requests.
Collection Citation:
New York Airways Collection, Acc. NASM.1992.0052, National Air and Space Museum, Smithsonian Institution.
See more items in:
New York Airways Collection
New York Airways Collection / Series 2: 1973 Acquisition / Documents, "Airport Affairs"
Archival Repository:
National Air and Space Museum Archives
EDAN-URL:
ead_component:sova-nasm-1992-0052-ref749
2 Page(s) matching your search term, top most relevant are shown: View entire project in transcription center
  • View Air Transport Association of America, ATA Airport Affairs Memorandum No. 67-28,
  • View Air Transport Association of America, ATA Airport Affairs Memorandum No. 67-28,

A Brief History of the Nickel

Creator:
Smithsonian Magazine  Search this
Type:
Blog posts
Smithsonian staff publications
Blog posts
Published Date:
Thu, 28 Apr 2016 13:09:34 +0000
Topic:
Search this
See more post:
Smithsonian Article Database
Data Source:
Smithsonian Magazine
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:posts_5eca024484b9e305b88bd661d6883877

Children of the ‘80s Never Fear: Video Games Did Not Ruin Your Life

Creator:
Smithsonian Magazine  Search this
Type:
Blog posts
Smithsonian staff publications
Conversations and talks
Blog posts
Published Date:
Thu, 25 May 2017 14:13:30 +0000
Topic:
Search this
See more post:
Smithsonian Article Database
Data Source:
Smithsonian Magazine
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:posts_d852784acbe4ae582b756e4c8e41706f

Machines à sous : collection Jean-Claude Baudot : Passage 44, Bruxelles, du 26 novembre 1982 au 16 janvier 1983 / rédaction, Jean-Claude Baudot

Author:
Baudot, Jean Claude  Search this
Crédit communal de Belgique  Search this
Physical description:
167 p. : col. ill. ; 30 cm
Type:
Exhibitions
Date:
1983
[1982]
Topic:
Vending machines  Search this
Slot machines  Search this
Coin-operated machines  Search this
Pinball machines  Search this
Call number:
TJ1570 .B38 1983
Data Source:
Smithsonian Libraries
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:siris_sil_824635

[Trade catalogs on coin-operated locks ... ]

Author:
Alexander Products Company  Search this
Smithsonian Libraries American History Trade Literature Collection DSI  Search this
Physical description:
<1> v. : ill
Type:
Catalogs
Trade catalogs
Date:
1923
1923-
Topic:
Locks and keys  Search this
Coin-operated machines  Search this
Call number:
051842
Data Source:
Smithsonian Libraries
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:siris_sil_673522

[Trade catalogs on coin-operated toilets, coin-operated lockers, locks ... ]

Author:
American Coin Lock Company  Search this
Smithsonian Libraries American History Trade Literature Collection DSI  Search this
Physical description:
<1> v. : ill
Type:
Catalogs
Trade catalogs
Date:
1920
[1920?]-
Topic:
Coin-operated machines  Search this
Coin-operated lockers  Search this
Toilets  Search this
Locks and keys  Search this
Call number:
052332
Data Source:
Smithsonian Libraries
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:siris_sil_683255

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