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Boden Sandstrom papers

 Collection 0165-SCPA

Boden Sandstrom earned her PhD in Ethnomusicology in 1997 at the University of Maryland and continued on as a professor in the department until her retirement in 2013. This collection contains materials she used to teach courses in world popular music and ethnomusicology, recordings, program budgets, textbooks, and articles, and papers written by Sandstrom, her colleagues including Marcia Herndon and Carolina Robertson, and students. Also included are programs and abstracts from the Society of Ethnomusicology annual conferences that Sandstrom attended


  • 1971-2013
  • Majority of material found within 1997-2008

Use and Access to Collection

This collection is open for research use. There are no restricted files in this collection. 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:

Duplication and Copyright Information

Use of the collection is governed by the Copyright Law of the United States (Title 17, U.S.C.). For questions regarding duplication of materials for research purposes or for publication, please contact the curator:


28.50 Linear Feet

Scope and Contents of Collection

The Boden Sandstrom papers covers the period from 1950 to 2013; the bulk of the materials date from 1997 to 2009. The collection contains undergraduate and graduate course materials in world popular music and ethnomusicology, recordings and audiovisual materials of ensembles and guest speakers at Maryland, papers written by Sandstrom, her colleagues including Marcia Herndon and Carolina Robertson, and students, textbooks and manuals, and budget guides for the ethnomusicology department. Related to Sandstrom’s work as an ethnomusicologist, the collection contains programs and abstracts from conferences of the Society for Ethnomusicology.

Biographical Note

Boden Sandstrom was accomplished as a musician, librarian, political activist, sound engineer, and ethnomusicologist. Before she came to teach and complete her Ph.D dissertation in Ethnomuiscology at the University of Maryland, Boden earned a BA in English and a minor in Music at St. Lawrence University in upstate New York. At the University of Michigan, she completed her Master of Library Science, which led her to first career as a librarian working in Acquisitions at San Jose State University in California, as Head of Circulation at Northeastern University in Boston, and as Reference Librarian and Overseer of the English Literature Collection at the Martin Luther King Library in Washington, D.C. She also worked in the University of Maryland Music Library as an archivist when she first came to the school to earn her Ph.D, from 1995-1997.

Sandstrom established her own sound engineering company “Woman Sound” with the help of her longtime partner Casse Culver, which later became Sandstrom’s own company “City Sound Productions” based in Washington, D.C. Sandstrom is also credited for her role in writing grants to support acquiring and maintaining equipment in the School of Music, as well as raising money for the Technology Lab. She also consulted on audio considerations during the construction of the Clarice Smith Performing Arts Center. Sandstrom first encountered ethnomusicology after mixing sound for innumerable ethnic communities in the D.C. area from Chinese New Year’s to Ethiopian weddings. Her prior managerial experience enabled her to transition into managing the ethnomusicology ensembles at Maryland.

She was also involved in governance at the university, serving on the university’s technology and multi-media instruction center committees, the US Student Fulbright Committee, the Honor Review Board of the Office of Judicial Programs, and on the University Senate’s CORE committee. While a member of the University Senate, Sandstrom is noted for introducing the language to include LGTB rights in the University’s strategic plan. Her longstanding undergraduate courses on popular music and identity, including an array of guest performers, drew thousands of undergraduate students for introduction to global popular music and unfamiliar cultures, while also teaching them about the expression of gender and political struggle through music. As an ethnomusicologist, Sandstrom participated as speaker and session chair at scholarly conference and published a number of articles. Sandstrom retired from the School of Music in February 2013.

Arrangement of Collection

This collection is organized into seven series.

  1. World Music Ensembles
  2. Books
  3. Undergraduate Course Materials
  4. Recordings
  6. Ethnomusicology Program
  7. Articles and Biographical Information

Custodial History and Acquisition Information

Donated in multiple accessions by Boden Sandstrom between 2012 and 2013.

Related Materials

  1. Society for Ethnomusicology records, Special Collections in Performing Arts, University of Maryland Libraries
  2. Marcia Herndon papers, Special Collections in Performing Arts, University of Maryland Libraries
  3. Rosenstock, Nancy. Inside the Second Wave of Feminism : Boston Female Liberation, 1968-1972 : An Account by Participants. Chicago, Illinois: Haymarket Books, 2022. (includes coverage of Dr. Sandstrom, available for borrowing from UMD's McKeldin Library)
  4. Boden Sandstrom papers and Woman Sound records, Sophia Smith Collection, Smith College Special Collections, Northampton, Massachustts (finding aid)
Boden Sandstrom papers
Emily Milanak; revised by Natalie Salive
September 2013; revised in 2023
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Script of description
Code for undetermined script
Language of description note
Finding aid written in English

Revision Statements

  • 2013-08-23: EAD markup validated using Oxygen software by Amanda May, August 2013.

Library Details

Part of the Michelle Smith Performing Arts Library

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