Collection Number: 20403

Collection Title: Fred Hoeptner Collection, 1959

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This is a finding aid. It is a description of archival material held in the Wilson Library at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. Unless otherwise noted, the materials described below are physically available in our reading room, and not digitally available through the World Wide Web. See the Duplication Policy section for more information.


Archival processing of the Fred Hoeptner Collection was made possible through a grant from the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation.

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Size 1 item.
Abstract The Fred Hoeptner Collection consists of an audio recording compiled by Fred Hoeptner, an environmental engineer, ragtime composer, and founding member of the John Edwards Memorial Foundation. The recording includes an interview that Hoeptner conducted with Mrs. Hila E. Weathers, sister of American folk singer, Goebel Reeves (1899-1959). Known as "the Texas Drifter," Reeves was an Anglo-American performer of cowboy, hobo, and western songs. In the recording Weathers discusses her brother's musical career as well as their upbringing in Sherman, Tex., among other topics. The recording also includes an interview with Anglo-American steel guitarist, Leon McAuliffe, being interviewed by his manager, G. Don Thompson. In the interview McAuliffe and Thompson discuss McAuliffe's career and influences, the history of the steel guitar, and other steel guitarists, including James Robert "Bob" Wills (1905-1975), an Anglo-American western swing musician, songwriter, and bandleader from Texas.
Creator Hoeptner, Fred, 1934-
Language English
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Restrictions to Access
Use of audio or visual materials may require production of listening or viewing copies.
Restrictions to Use
No usage restrictions.
Copyright Notice
Copyright is retained by the authors of items in these papers, or their descendants, as stipulated by United States copyright law.
Preferred Citation
[Identification of item], in the Fred Hoeptner Collection #20403, Southern Folklife Collection, The Wilson Library, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.
Acquisitions Information
Received from Fred Hoeptner of La Crescenta, Calif. in September 2005 (Acc. 100216).
Sensitive Materials Statement
Manuscript collections and archival records may contain materials with sensitive or confidential information that is protected under federal or state right to privacy laws and regulations, the North Carolina Public Records Act (N.C.G.S. § 132 1 et seq.), and Article 7 of the North Carolina State Personnel Act (Privacy of State Employee Personnel Records, N.C.G.S. § 126-22 et seq.). Researchers are advised that the disclosure of certain information pertaining to identifiable living individuals represented in this collection without the consent of those individuals may have legal ramifications (e.g., a cause of action under common law for invasion of privacy may arise if facts concerning an individual's private life are published that would be deemed highly offensive to a reasonable person) for which the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill assumes no responsibility.
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The following terms from Library of Congress Subject Headings suggest topics, persons, geography, etc. interspersed through the entire collection; the terms do not usually represent discrete and easily identifiable portions of the collection--such as folders or items.

Clicking on a subject heading below will take you into the University Library's online catalog.

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Fred Hoeptner (b. 1934) is a retired environmental engineer whose hobbies include playing piano and mandolin, composing ragtime music, backpacking, mountaineering, and conservation. Hoeptner received a B.S.C.E. from the University of Southern California in 1955 and an M.S.E. (Environmental Engineering) from Loyola University of Los Angeles in 1973. He retired from the City of Los Angeles Department of Public Works, where he worked as a senior civil engineer with the Public Works waste water management division. He is an active volunteer with Sierra Club California, Historical Society of Crescenta Valley, Friends of La Crescenta Library, and Rose Leaf Ragtime Club.

Hoeptner has been fascinated by country, western, and folk music and curious about its origins since his teen years when he first heard it on radio and started collecting vintage recordings. He first realized that it merited scholarly study after meeting late folklorist and author Archie Green, who encouraged his interest. In 1959 he joined Bob Pinson on an expedition to the South and Southwest, one of the first efforts to find and interview early vernacular recording artists.

In 1962 Hoeptner joined Green in the founding of the John Edwards Memorial Foundation, which was established as a non-profit organization at the University of California at Los Angeles to promote the study and dissemination of knowledge about American folk music of the 1920s-1940s. Fellow board members included Archie Green, Eugene Earle, D. K. Wilgus, and Ed Kahn. All except Ed Kahn were on the board in 1983, when they agreed to sell the materials at UCLA to the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill where it was incorporated into the Southern Folklife Collection.

Additional recordings and interviews compiled by Hoeptner reside in the John Edwards Memorial Foundation Collection (#20001). These recordings include interviews with and music of Anglo-American early recording musicians, including A. C. ("Eck") Robertson (b. 1887), fiddler from Texas; Clayton McMichen (1900-1970), fiddler for the Skillet Lickers and other groups, from Georgia; Maybelle Carter (1909-1978), singer and guitarist for the Carter Family, from Virginia; Walter Bailes, early bluegrass singer; and Ernest Tubb (1914-1984), country musician from Texas; Goebel Reeves (1899-1959), the Texas Drifter, Anglo-American performer of cowboy, hobo, and western songs, of Sherman, Tex.; Denver Whitten, fiddler, accompanied by Fred Hoeptner and various western and country song performers, including Bill Boyd and His Cowboy Ramblers, an early western swing band; Dick Reinhart, guitarist; Jack Webb, the 101 Ranch Cowboy, vocalist and guitarist; the Girls of the Golden West, a western duo of Dolly and Milly Good; and the Allen Brothers. Hoeptner's paper, "Goebel Reeves and Jimmie Rodgers: the 1925 Barnstorming Episode," was published in the International Country Music Journal in 2016.

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The Fred Hoeptner Collection consists of an audio recording compiled by Fred Hoeptner, an environmental engineer, ragtime composer, and founding member of the John Edwards Memorial Foundation. The recording includes an interview that Hoeptner conducted with Mrs. Hila E. Weathers, sister of American folk singer, Goebel Reeves (1899-1959). Known as "the Texas Drifter," Reeves was an Anglo-American performer of cowboy, hobo, and western songs. In the recording Weathers discusses her brother's musical career as well as their upbringing in Sherman, Tex., among other topics. The recording also includes an interview with Anglo-American steel guitarist, Leon McAuliffe, being interviewed by his manager, G. Don Thompson. In the interview McAuliffe and Thompson discuss McAuliffe's career and influences, the history of the steel guitar, and other steel guitarists, including James Robert "Bob" Wills (1905-1975), an Anglo-American western swing musician, songwriter, and bandleader from Texas.

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Contents list

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1 item.

Titles and descriptions compiled from original container

SFC Audio Open Reel FT-20403/12516

Hila Weathers interview concerning Goebel Reeves, 1959; Leon McAuliffe interview conducted by G. Don Thompson, 1959 #20403, Series: "Fred Hoeptner Collection, 1959." FT-20403/12516

1/4" Open Reel Audio

7" reel ; 7.5 ips

Side one includes an interview with Mrs. Hila E. Weathers, sister of Goebel Reeves (1899-1959). Subjects discussed include childhood in Sherman, Tex., family, stories about early life, church, father on Texas legislature, schooling, story about monkey, family's occupation, Goebel's musical education, service, work and background, chambers of commerce, knowledge of songs, army bugler, return from war, guitar, travels, yodel, last tome saw Goebel, radio broadcast, education, songs they knew, parents, and religion.

Side two includes an interview with Leon McAuliffe being interviewed by his manager, G. Don Thompson. Subjects discussed include how he learned steel [guitar], other steel players, early bands played with, development of steel, Bob Wills, jazz influence, M. Brown, etc.

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Processing Information

Encoded by: Anne Wells, July 2016

Archival processing of the Fred Hoeptner Collection was made possible through a grant from the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation.

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