Just found out by reading a WWII draft registration form that a relative was part of the New Deal WPA Music Project. I knew about the Writers' Project, but not the Music Project. Not too much info out there about it. Can anyone steer me in the right direction?
Thank you so much for that information. It makes me so proud of my family to know that my Dad's uncle was a part of this program. The fact that he was still employed by this program during WWII tells me that he must have been really good at what he was doing.
"Several states, including Florida, collected and recorded folk music, while other units provided copying, research, and other services for the performing units. Approximately 15,000 musicians were employed during the FMPâ€™s peak in 1936, and 10,000 musicians were still working at the beginning of World War II. "
It also tells me that the history of music and musicians that I knew was a part of my family was must stronger than I could have imagined. Not only does it give me a strong sense of family, but it also tells me that there was a time in our country's history when a love of and belief in the "arts" was important to us as a people. If I sound sentimental, I am sorry, but as an educator and an Italian -American, it makes me proud and happy to be a part of our country's history.
The state archives in Trenton as well as the New Jersey Historical Society in Newark both have extensive WPA materials in their collections. I'm sure you could find specific primary source regarding the New Deal WPA Music Project at those locations. The NJHS has an online search engine that may be a good starting point. See link below
Trish has already told me that the naturalization records are there also. Now I have 2 reasons to go to Trenton. I don't mind the ride, but I dread the thought of parking. Have you been there? How accessible is it? Thanks for the website.
Trenton can be a mess when the legislature is in session. I'm not sure when they are on break but once i went in July and the entire town was a ghost town, but the archives and state library (which is right nearby) was still open so try and go when all the politicos are out of town.
The NJHS is a great facility and worth the trip since a lot of their material is NOT entirely on their online search engine. There is ample parking across the street for about 6-8$