from the Estate of Arthur F. Schrader
He began working with the Isaiah Thomas ballad
collection in 1962, and received an AAS-NEH fellowship in 1979-80 to
prepare the collection for publication.
Kate Van Winkle Keller later
joined the project and is currently completing the work of Mr. Schrader
and his late wife, Penn Elizabeth Burke Schrader.
Arthur F. Schrader (1925-2004) was a music historian, or as he
himself, "an historian who works with obscure old songs sung by ordinary
Prior to becoming a member of the American Antiquarian Society
in 1995, Mr. Schrader was a researcher utilizing the collections to deepen
his understanding of historically accurate 18th- and 19th-century American
music and performance.
The Ethiopian Violin Instructor, Containing Full and Complete
Instructions, with all the Popular Negro Melodies of the Day,
Including those of the Christy Minstrels (Boston, 1850) was
ostensibly written by Gumbo Chaff, the pseudonym of Elias Howe
Howe had previously published The Ethiopian Glee Book and The
Ethiopian Flute Instructor in 1848 and 1849.
In addition to researching colonial and early American music, Mr.
also performed it. He discovered that his program of "Singing History" in
schools reached students with an immediate sense of historical relevance.
He was a ballad singer as well as a music researcher at Old Sturbridge
Village, where he worked for two decades. At AAS he presented musical
programs such as "Ballads for Ballots."
The Musical Fountain was a temperance songster
published in 1866. Songs
such as "Clear Cold Water" urged their audience to partake of "the pure
drink" rather than alcoholic beverages. The songster concludes with the
"Independent Order of Good Templars," an order of service for temperance
meetings that includes odes and pledges.
Among his professional accolades, Mr. Schrader was a visiting professor at
the College of William and Mary and helped found The Sonneck Society, now
the Society for American Music. A WWII veteran, Mr. Schrader earned four
Purple Heart citations and a silver star for bravery in battle.
"One day I am visited by a collector of ordination sermons; the next, by
a collector of 4th of July orations; then comes a collector of geography;
another wants religious newspapers; another wants every book printed in
New York before 1700. I accommodate myself to all; for I want every thing
and collect every thing, and I have more zeal than the whole of them: and
in this way I am kept very busy."|
~Christopher Columbus Baldwin
3rd Librarian of AAS
For almost two hundred years the librarians at the Antiquarian Society
have worked to build collections by purchase and by donation. This page
displays a recent product of our zeal.
The Marcus A. McCorison Librarian of AAS
(and 13th in the line of AAS librarians)
Recent Acquisitions Index
Recent acquisitions in the Newspaper