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Acton E. Ostling, Jr. papers

 Collection 0324-SCPA
Twenty-four boxes of papers, recordings, publications, and photographs pertaining to Dr. Ostling's long career as a band director, conductor, clinician, adjudicator, and musician, including his tenures at Louisville University and Iowa State University.


  • 1962-2018


36 Linear Feet (24 record storage boxes)

Biographical / Historical

Acton E. Ostling, Jr. (b. 30 June 1936), is an Emeritus Professor of Music at the University of Louisville. From 1974 until 1995, he served as Director of Bands and the conductor of the Louisville Symphony Band, retiring from the institution in 2001. While at Louisville, he also taught undergraduate and graduate courses in conducting, as well as courses in theory, orchestration, and wind band repertoire. Earlier academic appointments included serving as Director of Bands at Iowa State University (1968-1972), and at the University of Maryland as Assistant Director of Bands (1962-1965) and then as Director of Bands (1965-1968). His career started in 1959 as director of the band and orchestra at Conard High School, West Hartford, Connecticut.

Ostling earned a Bachelor of Music in music education (1958) and a Master of Music in wind instruments (1959), both from the University of Michigan. He earned a Ph.D. (1978) at the University of Iowa, with a dissertation studying wind band literature according to specific criteria of artistic merit. Elected into ABA in 1967, he is still an active member of the organization. He served on the editorial review board for the "Journal of Band Research," and also served as the journal's Acting Editor. Ostling was President of the Maryland Band Directors Association (a branch of the Maryland Music Educators Association), and served for eight years as Secretary-Treasurer of the College Band Directors National Association.

Ostling was married to Janet in 1959, and they had two children together, Eric and Kristin. His father, Acton Ostling (1906-1993), was also a music educator and band professional.

SOURCES Acton Eric Ostling papers. 1968-1972, and undated. RS 13/17/56. Iowa State University Archives., last accessed 20 February 2019. Acton Ostling, Jr. University of Louisville, School of Music., last accessed 20 February 2019. Ostling, Acton Eric, Sr. (1906 - 1993), educator, composer. Oxford Music Online., last accessed 20 February 2019.


Many of the the donated boxes reflect Acton E. Ostling, Jr.'s detailed and methodical system of organization. To the extent possible, this system has been maintained. In some instances this results in more sub-series than in comparable collections.
In Progress
Christina Taylor Gibson and Emma Hammond
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
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Library Details

Part of the Michelle Smith Performing Arts Library Library

University of Maryland Libraries
8270 Alumni Drive
College Park MD 20742 United States