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Sounds and Stories began in 2002 as an oral-history project. A Peabody Conservatory musicology seminar of 18 students interviewed dozens of participants in the music of Baltimore's black community to record their memories and to document their world and their legacy. The collection was assembled primarily from 1998 to 2004 and contains oral histories, photographs, and supporting research about African-American musical culture, especially in Baltimore from approximately 1930 to 1960.
Wilmer T. Bartholomew was a professor of music at the Peabody Institute and Goucher College who specialized in acoustics research, singing technique, and choral conducting. The Bartholomew papers contain published and manuscript scores composed by Bartholomew as well as various notes, research, correspondence, and publications.