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Keywords: 'sounding spirit' (this phrase)
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PW-277494-21

Emory University (Atlanta, GA 30322-1018)
Jesse P. Karlsberg (Project Director: July 2020 to present)
Sounding Spirit Digital Library: Digitizing Southern Vernacular Sacred Song

The digitization of 1,284 books of vernacular sacred music from the U.S. South published between 1850 and 1925.

The Sounding Spirit digital library provides access to 1,284 books of vernacular sacred music from the US South published between 1850 and 1925. This corpus of gospel songbooks, collections of spirituals, shape-note tunebooks, and hymnals offers critical insights into the lived experience of Americans who used these works to navigate a modernizing turn-of-the-twentieth-century musical landscape. Led by a team of humanities scholars and technologists based at Emory University's Center for Digital Scholarship, the Sounding Spirit digital library includes six partner archives holding an impressive range of southern sacred song. Digitizing and making accessible works representing the sacred music making of blacks, whites, and Native Americans, and supporting their interpretation via digital collections and descriptive entries, the Sounding Spirit digital library recasts our understanding of American music for a broad public of researchers, teachers, and practitioners of sacred song.

Project fields:
American Studies; Folklore and Folklife; Music History and Criticism

Program:
Humanities Collections and Reference Resources

Division:
Preservation and Access

Totals:
$346,781 (approved)
$344,687 (awarded)

Grant period:
9/1/2021 – 8/31/2024


PW-264219-19

Emory University (Atlanta, GA 30322-1018)
Jesse P. Karlsberg (Project Director: July 2018 to March 2021)
Sounding Spirit Digital Library: Sacred Music from the Southern Diaspora, 1850-1925

A planning project to develop a digital library that would include books of vernacular Protestant music from the southern region of the United States published between 1850 and 1925.

Sounding Spirit is a planned digital library enabling access to hundreds of influential books of vernacular Protestant music of the southern United States diaspora from 1850 to 1925. Anchored at Emory Universitys Center for Digital Scholarship, this Foundations grant application draws together four institutions with outstanding collections of these materials and diverse digitization workflows and digital repositories: Emorys Pitts Theology Library, the Center for Popular Music at Middle Tennessee State University, the John Jacob Niles Center for American Music at the University of Kentucky, and the Southern Baptist Theological Seminary. We seek to 1.) launch a pilot site featuring twenty volumes, 2.) document processes for digitization and portal ingest that meet diverse institutional needs, 3.) draft a list of 500 to 700 volumes for a planned expanded portal, 4.) share our findings to enable comparable work elsewhere, and 5.) formalize an ongoing partnership among collaborators.

[White paper][Grant products]

Project fields:
American Studies

Program:
Humanities Collections and Reference Resources

Division:
Preservation and Access

Totals:
$58,230 (approved)
$58,230 (awarded)

Grant period:
5/1/2019 – 4/30/2020


RQ-260871-18

Emory University (Atlanta, GA 30322-1018)
Jesse P. Karlsberg (Project Director: December 2017 to present)
Allen E. Tullos (Co Project Director: January 2018 to present)
Sounding Spirit: Scholarly Editions of Southern Sacred Music, 1851–1911

Preparation of print and digital editions of five volumes of American Protestant music from several traditions, including gospel, spirituals, lined-out hymn singing, and shape-note music. (36 months)

“Sounding Spirit: Scholarly Editions of Southern Sacred Music, 1851–1911” will make available connected open access digital editions and print volumes of five widely influential but currently inaccessible books of Protestant music, including gospel (Class, Choir, and Congregation; Soul Echoes, No. 2), spirituals (Jubilee Songs), shape-note music (Original Sacred Harp), and lined-out hymn singing (Nakcokv Esyvhiketv). The intermingling of black, white, and Native American populations in the southern United States dispersed the music presented in these songbooks across the country. In critical editions richly annotated with text and multimedia, joined with in-depth introductions, and published by the University of North Carolina Press, the “Sounding Spirit” series offers scholars of history, musicology, folklore, regional studies, and religious studies access to key texts and appeals to a general audience, including contemporary populations engaged in sacred music making.

[Grant products]

Project fields:
American Studies; Folklore and Folklife; Music History and Criticism

Program:
Scholarly Editions and Translations

Division:
Research Programs

Totals:
$260,000 (approved)
$260,000 (awarded)

Grant period:
12/1/2018 – 5/31/2023