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Words and Music: 1904

Words and Music: 1904

Detroit circa 1904. "General offices, Whitney-Warner Publishing Co." Interior of the sheet-music business seen here yesterday. Among the tunes on display: "Hiawatha Song," "Bedelia" and the "Soko March" Two-Step. View full size.


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Ok here goes. Both sides

Ok here goes.

Both sides are employees. For instance the bookkeeper is over on the other side of the wall on the right. The group of guys on the left, in the back, are delivery boys, runners or else a tour group. The gated area is the storage for the sheet music. The typist process the orders, gives it to one of the guys, runner, he gets the music and takes it to the bookkeeper. And the bookkeeper tallys the order up. They look very busy.

Just my guess.


Take yourself back in time. Bedelia ("The Irish Coon Song Seranade"), written by William Jerome and Jean Schwartz, can be heard here:, and Hiawatha ("A Summer Idyl by Neil Moret") can be heard here:

Jerome H. Remick

Here you can find the story of Jerome H. Remick "who turned the Whitney-Warner Publishing Company into an extraordinarily successful sheet music publishing house."
That still leaves the question of what is happening in the presented scene. Is there a Sherlock who can solve this intriguing and puzzling question for us?

Sleeve protectors

I'm trying to figure out what these sleeve protectors are made from.
And it does look like the poor typists are caught in the crunch, kvenido.
Can't see how they get any work done if this is typical.


The topcoats and the wreath may mean it's around Christmas.

Clarification please?

I really can't tell what is going on in this picture. Is the crowd on the left waiting to order sheet music etc. from the people behind the counter on the right and the poor folks at the typewriters just got caught in the crunch? Or have I got it backwards? (or not even close?!)

Outstanding balance

That's not the way I'd arrange those letter files, but then perhaps before getting into the music biz someone there was a Vaudeville juggler and was thinking cigar boxes.

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