Collection ID: NPKMC-332-172

Collection context


Rick Whitesell
Rick Whitesell turned a childhood passion into a diverse musical career. His love of music led him to assemble a collection of records, or more appropriately, a collection of music, spanning five decades, dating back to the late 1920s. The collection consists of over 3,500 records and follows the development of music for more than fifty years. Also included in the collection are issues of "Goldmine" magazine, where Rick served as an editor and feature writer, as well as some audio and video tapes containing interviews and performances.
75 Linear Feet
Preferred citation:

[Description of item, date, location of item in order of series, box number, folder number ], in the Rick Whitesell Record Collection, Archives and Special Collections, James A. Cannavino Library, Marist College.


Scope and Content:

The Whitesell Collection consists of discs tracing the development of black music in America as well as other genres of music. Included in the collection are several issues of "Goldmine" magazine, a music magazine where Rick worked as editor and feature writer, as well as audio and videotapes containing interviews and performances.

Biographical / Historical:

The Rick Whitesell Record Collection has been characterized as one of the most comprehensive private collections of its type in the country. Tracing the development of black music from the turn of the century to the late 1950s, the collection consists of seven, ten, and twelve inch discs whose numbers span into the thousands. Early artists such as the Mills Brothers, the Southernaires, and the Charioteers are all represented in the collection. The Whitesell Collection also contains a broad cross-section of works by such premier groups as the Delta Rhythm Boys, Fred Astaire, Les Paul, Ella Fitzgerald, and the most successful of the jubilee groups, the Golden Gate Quartet.

It is important to remember that Rick Whitesell was more than just a record collector. Rick became a music historian. His talents were fully utilized at "Goldmine" magazine, a publication for record collectors. As editor and feature writer, Rick was able to formalize his studies and knowledge into insightful articles about important areas of America's cultural growth. "Gold mine" is also a part of this collection as issues can be found dating from the mid 1970s to late 1980s. Rick's expertise served as an important resource to many. Collectors, musicians, filmmakers, independent writers, and other music publications that needed small or substantial amounts of information would contact Rick for assistance. Any special consideration Rick received was used to further explore America's musical growth, correct historical inaccuracy ies he uncovered, or help those in the business. When he learned of older musicians who had never received royalty payments, he directed them to the proper songwriting associations for assistance. Rick's selfless giving lives on by the donation of his collection to Marist College for the purpose of providing future scholars with the resources to continue his work.

Acquisition information:
The Whitesell family donated the collection to Marist College.

These records are organized into nine series: 1) 10" Discs, 2) 12" Discs, 3) 7" Discs, 4) Audio Tapes, 5) Audio Reels, 6) "Goldmine" and Other Publications, 7) Video Tapes, 8) Books, and 9) Miscellaneous.

Materials are arranged alphabetically.

Physical location:
Please contact the Marist College Archives and Special Collections for information regarding use and access of this collection.
Rules or conventions:
DACS Describing Archives: A Content Standard. Chicago: Society of American Archivists, 2013.



There are no restrictions on this collection


Individuals requesting reproductions expressly assume the responsibility for compliance with all pertinent provisions of the Copyright Act, 17 U.S.C. ss101 et seq. Patrons further agree to indemnify and hold harmless the Marist College Archives and Special Collections and its staff in connection with any disputes arising from the Copyright Act, over the reproduction of material at the request of patrons. For more information please visit the following website:


[Description of item, date, location of item in order of series, box number, folder number ], in the Rick Whitesell Record Collection, Archives and Special Collections, James A. Cannavino Library, Marist College.

3399 North Road
Poughkeepsie, NY 12601, United States