Mick Moloney Irish-American Music and Popular Culture Irish Americana Collection
Language of Materials
This collection of Irish-American ephemera and published music is part of the larger Mick Moloney Irish-American Music and Popular Culture Collection. This subcollection consists of sheet music, songsters, joke books, advertisements, and other forms of printed ephemera documenting the Irish and Irish-American image in American popular culture during the 19th and 20th centuries, with particular emphasis on ethnic perceptions and representations.
Dr. Mick Moloney (1944-2022) was a musician, folklorist, and Global Distinguished Professor of Music and Irish Studies at New York University. He immigrated to the United States in 1973, earning a Ph.D. in folklore and folklife from the University of Pennsylvania. He has recorded and produced over forty albums of traditional music, acted as an advisor for scores of festivals and concerts, and served as artistic director for the musical ensemble The Green Fields of America. In 1999, Moloney was awarded the National Heritage Award of the National Endowment of the Arts, the highest official honor of traditional artist can receive in the United States. Moloney is the author of Far from the Shamrock Shore (2002) and numerous essays on Irish music and musical culture, and the co-editor of Close to the Floor: Irish Dance from the Boreen to Broadway (2009).
Sources: Steve Winnick, "From Limerick Rake to Solid Man: The Musical Life of Mick Moloney," Dirty Linen, No. 48 (October/November 1993) 1999 NEA National Heritage Fellowships: http://www.nea.gov/honors/heritage/fellows/fellow.php?id=1999_11 Mick Moloney, Musician and Folklorist: http://www.mickmoloney.com
Materials within each series are arranged in alphabetical order by title or subject, with the exception of materials from accession 2010-019 listed at the end of Series I and Series III respectively, which were not arranged by an archivist.
Series I: Sheet Music (Irish), 1817-1995
Series II. Songsters and Song Albums, 1863-1960
Series III. Sheet Music (Non-Irish), 1847-1950
Series IV. Joke Books, 1883-1928
Series V. Postcards, 1900-1915
Series VI. Ephemera, 1833-1961
Sub-series VI.A: General, 1833-1961
Sub-series VI.B: Merchant Ads, 1916 - circa 1960
Sub-series VI.C: Cartoons, 1865-1892
Scope and Content Note
The Mick Moloney Irish-American Music and Popular Culture Irish Americana Collection is a subcollection of the larger Mick Moloney Irish-American Music and Popular Culture Collection consisting of printed ephemera and published music documenting the Irish and Irish-American image in American popular culture during the 19th and 20th centuries, with particular emphasis on perceptions, representations, and stereotypes of Irish people. The subcollection includes both positive and negative stereotypes of the Irish, as depicted on sheet music, postcards, and other commercial printed materials such as songsters, joke books, advertisements, and cartoons. The joke books also contain content about harmful stereotypes of other immigrant groups, Jews, Asians, and Black Americans. Materials in this collection were published between 1817 and 1995, with the majority dating from between 1860 and 1930. The market for such commercial paper products was tied to the simultaneous emergence and symbiotic relationship of the American middle class and the culture of consumption during this period. In addition, the seepage of entertainment from public venues such as vaudeville into the domestic sphere created demand for such materials.
Open for research without restrictions.
Copyright of the items in the collection are either held by their creators or in the public domain, depending on publication date, publication country, and whether or not the work was registered with a copyright notice. Users need not secure permission from the Tamiment library to publish or reproduce materials in this collection in the public domain; permission to publish or reproduce materials to which original creators hold copyright must be secured from the copyright holder. Please contact Tamiment Library and Robert F. Wagner Labor Archives, firstname.lastname@example.org, 212-998-2596 for assistance with contacting donor.
Published citations should take the following form:
Identification of item, date; Mick Moloney Irish-American Music and Popular Culture Irish Americana Collection (AIA 031.004); box number; folder or item number; Archives of Irish America;
New York University Libraries.
Custodial History Note
New York University's Division of Libraries, in conjunction with Glucksman Ireland House at New York University, purchased the Mick Moloney Collection for the Archives of Irish America in 2006. Until the Collection was transferred to New York University, under the supervision of Dr. Michael Nash, Head of the Tamiment Library, the materials were stored in Dr. Moloney's house in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. The accession numbers associated with this collection are 2006.071 and 2010.019.
About this Guide
The original order of materials was maintained except in the case of obvious misfiling; Dr. Moloney employed various people to organize his papers prior to accession with sometimes unpredictable results.
In the fall of 2021 the description of Series IV: Joke Books was edited to provide more context for the materials.
In the fall of 2022, materials from accession 2010-019 were processed and described by an archivist. Materials were placed in new acid-free folders and boxes. Original titles were maintained when possible. One piano reel was rehoused by New York University's Barbara Goldsmith Preservaiton and Conservation Lab. Materials from accession 2010-019 were intellectually incorporated into appropriate series and sub-series. Postcards and ephemera materials were incorporated into the existing alphabetized file listings of Series II, IV, V, and VI; songbooks added to Series I and Series III were not arranged by an archivist and were added to the end of the previously created alphabetized file listings.