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Purdue University Bands and Orchestras records

 Collection — Multiple Containers
Identifier: UA 160

Scope and Contents

The Purdue University Bands and Orchestras records document the history of the organization from the nineteenth century through the present. Types of materials include documents, newsletters, press clippings, video and audio recordings, photographs, programs, brochures, and artifacts. The records cover the activities of the All-American Marching Band, Jazz Band, Athletic Bands, ensembles, orchestras, and concert bands, in addition to auxiliary organizations, and are a valuable resource on all aspects of the history of Bands at Purdue University.


  • circa 1890-2015


Access Information

This collection is open for research.

Copyright and Use Information

Material copyrights are held by Purdue University. Consult with Purdue University Archives and Special Collections prior to reproduction of materials.

Historical Information

The Purdue Band was organized in 1886, a year before the Purdue football team was formed. It was designed as a Military band where members received ROTC drill credit for their participation. It is currently made up of the Marching Band which was named the “All-American” Marching Band by a TV broadcaster in response to the first halftime show with lighted uniforms and instruments, the Jazz Band, the Concert and Symphony Bands. Noted alumni of the Bands include Orville Redenbacher (tuba, founder of Orville Redenbacher popcorn), Neil Armstrong (baritone, first man on the moon), and Russell Games Slayter (tuba, inventor of fiberglass).The Band has seen massive transformation of the year under the leadership of world-renowned band directors such as Paul Spotts Emrick, Dr. Al G. Wright, among others. The Band boasts of many firsts, which includes being the first band to break military ranks to create a formation of any kind, the Block “P” in 1907, and the first band to create an oversized bass drum in 1921. The Band has an amazing twirling team lead by the Golden Girl, Girl-in-Black, and Silver Twins.


66.791 Cubic Feet (95 boxes)

Language of Materials


Acquisition Information

Materials were acquired from the Purdue Bands Department in 2011. Additional materials were transferred in 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015 and 2016.

Processing Information

The original order of the materials has been retained whenever possible. All materials have been housed in acid-free folders and acid-free boxes. Loose Photographs have been placed into polyester sleeves. Most newsprint has been photocopied or scanned. Newspapers have been preserved for display purposes, with scans made available for research. Oversized posters and newspapers have been separated and placed into individual boxes and acid-free folders for preservation purposes.
Purdue University Bands records
In Progress
Elizabeth Kriebel, Frank Gyimah
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Script of description
Language of description note
Edition statement
First edition.

Repository Details

Part of the Purdue University Archives and Special Collections Repository

504 Mitch Daniels Boulevard
West Lafayette Indiana 47907 United States