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Chelsea House Folklore Center collection

Identifier: C-163

Scope and Contents

The collection includes nearly 2500 recordings of performances from the Center. Performers represented include folk and traditional musicians from New England as well as other parts of the United States, Canada, Ireland, Scotland, and England. Additional materials include newsletters from folklore organizations, programs, calendars and posters for East Coast folk festivals and coffeehouses


  • Creation: 1974-1981


Conditions Governing Access

Open for research without restrictions.

Conditions Governing Use

For permission to publish materials, contact: Special Collections & Archives Middlebury College Phone: (802) 443-2387 Email:

Biographical / Historical

Between 1974 and 1981, the Chelsea House Folklore Center of West Brattleboro, Vermont, was a coffeehouse and resource center for area folk musicians. The Center sponsored concerts by local and itinerant musicians from the U.S., Canada, and the British Isles during a rich period in the history of American popular music. Performances at the Center were primarily in the popular folk idiom, although other genres of music were also represented. Nearly every concert at the Chelsea House was recorded. These (largely cassette) tapes were labeled and stored in an archive. Log books for these concert engagements were also preserved.

Additionally, as a local resource for area musicians and others interested in performances of popular folk music, the Center maintained a library of materials which included books and pamphlets on traditional music and regional folklife, posters, programs, as well as newsletters, concert announcements from regional folklore societies, coffee houses and folk festivals. Other materials retained by the Center include information on record production, as well as the master tapes and discs of selected performances at the Center and at the Brattleboro Folk Festival.


90 Boxes

Language of Materials



Collection is arranged into five series: Recordings, Indexes, Newsletters and periodicals, Papers, and Posters.

Physical Characteristics and Technical Requirements

Please contact Special Collections for access to audio materials.

Physical Location

B1 21 and flat file drawer 14

Other Finding Aids

See original finding aid for detailed inventory of materials in collection.

Immediate Source of Acquisition

Donated to Middlebury College in 1981 by the Chelsea House Folklore Center.

Language of description
Script of description
Code for undetermined script

Repository Details

Part of the Middlebury College Special Collections & Archives Repository

Middlebury College
Davis Family Library
110 Storrs Avenue
Middlebury Vermont 05753 United States