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Vaughn Taylor Bornet Sheet Music Collection
4 linear feet
This collection of sheet music was donated by Dr. Vaughn Davis Bornet and named in memory of his father, Vaughn Taylor Bornet. An engineer by occupation and “stride piano” player by avocation, Vaughn Taylor Bornet sometimes played music for silent films in local theaters. This collection of sheet music reflects Vaughn Taylor Bornet’s varied musical interests.
The sheet music collection dates range from 1895 through 1936 and features popular musical themes which emerged in the United States at the turn of the 20th century. The selections include melodies, overtures, lullabies, marching tunes, Negro spirituals, tributes to World War I, and salutes to American theater. Notable among the compositions are works by George Gershwin, Oscar Hammerstein, Irving Berlin, Victor Herbert, George M. Cohan, Al Jolson, Rodgers & Hart, John Philip Sousa; and Johann Strauss. There are also a few titles by African American composers and lyricists James Weldon and Rosamond Johnson, Bob Cole, Harvey T. Burleigh, Will Marion Cook, and poetic compositions of Paul Laurence Dunbar. Publishing houses represented in the collection include Joseph W. Stern, T. B. Harms, Mark Witmark and Sons, Leo Feist and Edward Marks.
Beautifully detailed illustrations grace the covers of many of the works with both colorfully exotic international themes and homespun renderings of small town USA. Additionally, minstrel scenes, whose vernacular negatively stereotyped African Americans, are among the illustrations. A unique item in the collection is the Eclipse Motion Picture Folio, compiled by Arthur Lange. This booklet of musical scores was played as accompaniment to silent films.