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John Heney papers

 Collection 0037-SCPA
A percussionist, music educator, and historian, John Joseph Heney, Sr. (1902-1978) played with numerous bands throughout his career; most notably the Sousa Band during its final six years. In addition to playing professionally, Heney taught at numerous schools in the Florida area, including Ketterlinus High School, Stetson University, and DeLand High School, where he stayed for thirty-two years. A member of the Sousa Band Fraternal Society, Heney was elected as archivist in November of 1969. During his time as archivist, Heney attempted to collect memorabilia from Sousa's life in order to preserve the history of the Sousa Band and its members. This collection contains correspondence, publications, clippings, articles, scores, programs, contracts, diaries, scrapbooks, yearbooks, photographs, sound recordings, and memorabilia related to his career as a music educator, his involvement with the John Philip Sousa Band, and his interest in preserving Sousa's memory after the band leader's death.

Dates

  • 1885-1978
  • Majority of material found within 1926-1976

Use and Access to Collection

The collection is open for research use.

Duplication and Copyright Information

Materials from this collection must be used in the Michelle Smith Performing Arts Library's Irving and Margery Morgan Lowens Special Collections Room, 10:00 am to 5:00 pm, Monday through Friday. Contact the curator for an appointment: http://www.lib.umd.edu/scpa/contact

Extent

6.00 Linear Feet

Scope and Content of Collection

The John J. Heney, Sr. papers cover the period from 1885 to 1978; the bulk of the materials date from 1926 to 1976. The papers contain correspondence, publications, clippings, articles, scores, programs, contracts, diaries, scrapbooks, yearbooks, photographs, sound recordings, and memorabilia related to his career as a music educator, his involvement with the John Philip Sousa Band, and his interest in preserving Sousa's memory after the band leader's death.

Biography

John Joseph Heney, Sr. was born in 1902. Heney's professional band career began in 1924, when he joined the Royal Scotch Highlanders Band. He stayed with the Highlanders until 1925, when he joined McDonald's Highlanders Band (The Kilties), which he stayed with until 1926, the same year he joined the John Philip Sousa Band. Heney performed with the Sousa Band during its last six years, as one of three drummers and xylophone soloist. During this time, the Sousa Band was not the only one to enjoy Heney's company, however. Heney also performed with the Sells-Floto Circus Band (aka Montgomery's Concert Band), the Bertram W. Mills' Olympia Circus Band, the Sparks Circus Band, the Hagenback-Wallace Circus Band, the Ringling Brothers, Barnum andamp; Bailey Circus Band, the Medinah Circus and Carnival Band, the Tom Mix Circus and Wild West Show.

The same year Heney joined the Sousa Band, he moved to St. Augustine, Florida, where he became the Band Director at Ketterlinus High School. 1926 was a busy year for Heney. Also during that same year, Heney became the Bandmaster at Stetson University, a position that lasted until 1935, when he became Bandmaster at DeLand High School in DeLand, Florida. His employment as Bandmaster at DeLand lasted 32 years.

While Bandmaster at DeLand, Heney was also active in the National Association of Rudimental Drummers (NARD), the American Bandmasters Association (ABA), and the Florida Bandmasters Association (FBA), of which he was made an honorary life president in 1941. All of this activity earned Heney the title of "one of the true pioneers of the school band movement in America." (Heney, 46)

As his band directing career flourished, Heney still had time for other pursuits, such as running Heney's Superior Service Station, a local gas station, and the Heney School of Percussion, a private drum studio from which Heney gave lessons.

In 1934, Heney also wrote and published a book, entitled The Correct Way to Drum: A Treatise on the Material Used in Modern Drumming. Besides The Correct Way to Drum, Heney also published 23 musical compositions and a number of journal articles in his lifetime.

Heney spent time in the United States Navy during World War II from 1942 until 1945.

A member of the Sousa Band Fraternal Society, Heney was elected as archivist in November of 1969. During his time as archivist, Heney attempted to collect and preserve as much of the memorabilia from Sousa's life and the history of the Sousa Band and its members as was left in the personal collections of other Sousa Band members and their families. He attempted to ensure that Sousa's memory and music were remembered by consulting on projects to record Sousa's music in the present day and by pushing for Sousa's induction into the Hall of Fame for Great Americans.

Heney died on September 1, 1978.

Arrangement

This collection is arranged into fourteen series.
  1. Series 1: Correspondence
  2. Series 2: Newspaper Clippings
  3. Series 3: Newspapers
  4. Series 4: Journals
  5. Series 5: Printed Music
  6. Series 6: Miscellaneous Publications
  7. Series 7: Programs
  8. Series 8: Photographs
  9. Series 9: Contracts
  10. Series 10: Diaries
  11. Series 11: Scrapbooks
  12. Series 12: Yearbooks
  13. Series 13: Memorabilia
  14. Series 14: Sound Recordings

Custodial History and Acquisition Information

In December of 1978, the materials comprising the John J. Heney, Sr. Collection were donated by his wife to the American Bandmasters Association Research Center at the University of Maryland, College Park campus. In accordance with an agreement with Mr. Heney, his Sousa Band uniform was used in an open house at the ABA Research Center the last week of January, 1979 in commemorating the fiftieth anniversary of the founding of the American Bandmaster's Association, and then sent to the Marine Museum at the U.S. Navy Yard in Washington, D.C.

Related Material

Berger, Kenneth, ed. "John J(oseph) Heney," Band Encyclopedia (Kent, Ohio: Band Associates, Inc., 1960), p.107.

Fortes, Jack F., "'I remember Sousa,' an interview with J.J. Heney, only surviving drummer with the 'March King's' great band," National Retired Teachers Association Journal. March-April 1976, pp.25-26.

Heney, Sr., John J., "On the Road with the Sousa Band," The School Musician. August-September 1976, pp.46-48.

"Heney Returns After Playing in Sousa Band," St. Augustine Evening Record. September 11, 1931, p.6.

The Overture, Opus 4: 1931 Year Book National Music Camp, formerly National High School Orchestra and Band Camp (Interlochen, Michigan: National Music Camp, 1931).
Title
John Heney papers: A Finding Aid
Status
Completed
Author
Jennifer A. Thompson, May 1999. Revised by Amanda May, August 2011.
Date
2011-08-01
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
English
Script of description
Code for undetermined script
Language of description note
Finding aid written in English

Library Details

Part of the Michelle Smith Performing Arts Library

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