University of Texas, Dolph Briscoe Center for American History

A Guide to the Ullrich Family Music Collection, [ca. early 1900s]

Descriptive Summary

Creator: Ullrich family
Title: Ullrich Family Music Collection
Dates: [ca. early 1900s]
Abstract: The Ullrich Family Music Collection is comprised of 32 sound cylinders, encompassing a variety of recordings from the first decades of the twentieth century.
Accession No.: 2016-042
OCLC No.: 942690888
Extent: 3 1/2 ft
Language: Materials are written in English.
Repository: Dolph Briscoe Center for American History, The University of Texas at Austin

Historical Note

Thomas Edison invented the phonograph in 1977, and subsequently created sound cylinders made of tinfoil. These, however, were fragile, unreliable, and could only be played a few times. The wax cylinder soon followed, and early recordings were produced with a brown or white wax. Some phonographs from this era could also record sounds using these cylinders, presenting one of the earliest mediums for amateur sound recordings.

Afterwards, other improvements were made, and in 1902, the cylinder was produced with what was called the Gold Mould process, which involved creating a metal mold from a wax master. The cylinders were often colored brown or black, and although the quality of sound varied, this process allowed for mass production. Cylinders were produced throughout the world, including China, Cuba and Germany; and, while Edison Records dominated the market, other companies released a variety of sound recordings, including Oxford Indestructible, which were sold through Sears-Robuck, and Columbia Phonograph.

The cylinders could record anywhere between two and four minutes of sound, and most recordings consist of instrumentals, popular music releases and vaudeville skits. Cylinders continued to be manufactured until approximately 1929, when the now more familiar flat disc LPs gained popularity, replacing it.


Gracyk, Tim, “Phonograph Cylinders: A Beginner’s Guide,” Tim’s Old Phonograph Records. Accessed February 15, 2016.

“UCSB Cylinder Archive,” UC Santa Barbara Library. Accessed February 15, 2016.

Scope and Contents

The Ullrich Family Music Collection is comprised of 32 inch sound cylinders, encompassing a variety of recordings from the first decades of the twentieth century.

Archivist's Note: The sound cylinders are of varying quality, and some may be unplayable. Potential issues have been noted in the inventory.



This collection is arranged by company name and then by title.


Access Restrictions

This collection is restriced. Please contact the repository for further information.

Index Terms

Subjects (Persons)
Ullrich family -- Archives
Edison, Thomas A. (Thomas Alva), 1847-1931
Jones, Ada
Spencer, Len, 1867-1914
Subjects (Organizations)
Columbia Phonograph Company, Inc
Edison Records
20th century American music
American popular music
Brown wax cylinder phonograph recordings
Cylinder recordings
Popular music -- 20th century
Sound recordings --Germany
Sound recordings -- History
Sound recordings -- United States
Two-minute wax cylinder phonograph recordings

Administrative Information

Preferred Citation

The Ullrich Family Music Collection, [circa early 1900s], Dolph Briscoe Center for American History, The University of Texas at Austin.

Processing Information

This collection was processed by Amanda Reyes, February 2016.

Detailed Description of the Papers



2.325/S107b Columbia Gold Moulded Record
Automobil-Marsch (Automobile March), Issue no. 1190
Homage to the Ladies, Issue n. 1251
Kaiser Friedrich March, Issue no. 1342
My Sweetheart, Waltz, Issue no. 1052
Waltzes from the Dollar Princess, Issue no. 1222
Columbia Phonograph Company, printed labels
Grand March from Tannhauser, Issue no. 1523 [damaged]
Paderewski’s Famous Minuet,” Issue no. 31948 or 31949 [damaged]
When the Trees are White with Blossoms” (Tenor), Issue no. 32470 [damaged]
2.325/S107c Columbia Phonograph Company, handwritten labels
“German solo” [damaged]
“German Vocal Solo” [damaged]
“[Illegible] German Song" [damaged]
2.325/S107e Columbia Phonograph Company, unlabeled, unnumbered (8)
2.325/S107c Edison GoldGuss Walze (German)
Gesang Duett Bummelkompagnon
Gesang Vexirjodler, Franz Huber and Maria, Issue no. 15317
[Illegible] Walzer, Johann Strauss (in an Edison Standard Record Container)
Edison Gold Moulded Indestructible Records
Rainbow, Ada Jones and Billy Murray, Issue no. 10049
Spanish Dance, Issue no. 10521 (?)
2.325/107d Edison Record
By the Silvery Moon, Ada Jones and Chorus, Issue no. 1330
Jolly Coopersmith, Issue #8139 [?]
Paulina, Otto and Fido, Ada Jones and Len Spencer, Issue no. 10041
Rudolph and Rosie at the Roller Rink, Ada Jones and Len Spencer, Issue no. 8139 [?]
Untitled [cracked]
Oxford Cylinder Record (aka Indestructible Phonograph Company)
Henny and Hilda, Ada Jones and Len Spencer, Issue no. 832
La, La, LaMarch-Two Step, Performer unknown, Issue no. 1142
Nearer My God to Thee, Quartette, Issue no. 790