Smithsonian Fieldwork, Festival of American Folklife Records, 1976-1999

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1976 - 1999 (Inclusive dates)
1985 (Bulk dates)
Scope and Content Note

Materials on Smithsonian Festival of American Folklore include correspondence and notes (1981, 1983, 1985, 1996), news releases (1983, 1985), newspaper clippings (1983, 1985), guidelines and participants info (1983, 1985), job announcement (1997), printed materials and programs (1983-1990, 1993-1994, 1998-1999), publicity report and photographs (1984), and descriptive materials on Cultural Conservation in French Louisiana and The Creole State: An Introduction to Louisiana Traditional Culture by Spitzer. Series also includes audiocassette and tape inventories as well as background information on participants involved in the SFAF, field reports (1985), inventory and audio recordings, and a list of participants in the SFAF (1994).

Administrative/Biographical History Element

"The Smithsonian Folklife Festival is an international exposition of living cultural heritage annually produced outdoors on the National Mall of the United States in Washington, D.C., by the Smithsonian Institution's Center for Folklife and Cultural Heritage.

The Festival takes place for two weeks every summer overlapping the Fourth of July holiday. It is an educational presentation that features community-based cultural exemplars. Free to the public, like other Smithsonian museums, each Festival typically draws more than one million visitors.

Initiated in 1967, the Festival has become a national and international model of a research-based presentation of contemporary living cultural traditions. Over the years, it has brought more than 23,000 musicians, artists, performers, craftspeople, workers, cooks, storytellers, and others to the National Mall to demonstrate the skills, knowledge, and aesthetics that embody the creative vitality of community-based traditions."

2012. “Smithsonian Folklife Festival - Mission and History.” Smithsonian Folklife Festival.


System of Arrangement

Materials may be found in the following series within the Louisana Folklife Program Project Files:

  • Series XVII. Smithsonian Institution, 1976-1999.
  • Series XXIV. Oral History, 1973-1999.
  • Series XXV. Video Tapes, 1982-1996.
  • Series XXVIII Delta Parishes Folklife Project, 1987-1998.

General Note

Collection is available for review at LSU Libraries Special Collections, Hill Memorial Library, Baton Rouge, La.

0.5 (Linear Feet)
49 (Cassette tapes)
English (Languages)
Other Subject Headings
Folk festivals--Washington D.C. (Library of Congress Subject Headings (LCSH))
Folk festivals (Ethnographic Thesaurus (ET))
Key Informants (Ethnographic Thesaurus (ET))
Louisiana--Social life and customs (Library of Congress Subject Headings (LCSH))
Smithsonian Folklife Festival (Library of Congress Subject Headings (LCSH))
Temporal Coverage
1983 - 1999
Preferred Citation
Louisiana Folklife Program Project Files, Mss. 4730, Louisiana and Lower Mississippi Valley Collections, LSU Libraries, Baton Rouge, Louisiana.

Objects in this Series