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Manuel Archuleta collection of Pueblo Indian, Navajo and Hopi music

 Collection
Identifier: MSS-830-BC

Scope and Content

The Manuel Archuleta collection contains six (of a total of 12) original Tom Tom 78s; copies of his Super Chief 45s; and copies of all his other recordings. These have been reformatted to CDs. According to a memo accompanying the collection, the six Tom Tom 78s were donated to John Donald Robb at UNM Fine Arts Library in November 1946 by Manuel Archuleta himself and Otis Smith (a Native American), from the Albuquerque Indian School.

Circa 1964, Archuleta’s oldest daughter, Elizabeth Archuleta, donated or loaned additional recordings by her father to the UNM Fine Arts Library, which were copied to 7 reels. These reels contained 232 songs recorded by Manuel Archuleta. All of the 24 songs that Archuleta recorded on Tom Toms and Super Chiefs were included on these reels. The remaining songs were apparently never recorded commercially. Some of them have no titles, but are Native American in origin. Some of the songs were composed by Archuleta.

In 2011, the Archuleta family located an album with Manuel’s yellow label - Songs of the Redmen, Super Chief Indian Records. They are similar to the Tom Toms but with different descriptions. For posterity, these were copied for the Library to CDs and returned to the family. Hence the duplication of titles in the inventory.

The family also located two descriptive handouts that Archuleta had produced to promote his recordings. These have been scanned, attached to this inventory and returned to the family.

The Manuel Archuleta collection contains the only known recordings of some of the outstanding Native New Mexican singers of the past. Featured are performers from San Juan, San Felipe, Laguna, Taos and Zuni Pueblos, as well as the Navajo and Hopi. They include vocals in the native languages performed by individual singers or by choruses, ceremonial songs and dance songs. Most performers are accompanied by drummers and occasionally by musicians with other native instruments. Song No. 187 is identified as being performed by an Indian child.

Dates

  • ca. 1940-1970

Access Restrictions

The collection is open for research.

Copy Restrictions

Duplication of recordings permitted only with written permission from artist, performer, interviewer and interviewee, tribal authority, or current holder of intellectual property rights. User is responsible for compliance with all copyright, privacy, and libel laws.

Biography / History

Tom Tom Record Label

Manuel Archuleta, of San Juan Pueblo, was one of the first collectors of Native American music in the United States. Archuleta first recorded music as a hobby, and later sold his records. He formed his own record production company, Tom Tom Records, Co., Albuquerque, New Mexico in around 1940. His label heading read - America’s Original Folk Songs of the Redmen, Vocal Documentation of Authentic Indian Songs. Additional slogans on his records include Manuel Archuleta Production Enterprise, Save-A-Chant Project Series, Limited Issue. Archuleta recorded 24 songs on 78s under this red label. After loss of the copyright to his first Tom Tom label, Manuel produced a second run of the 24 songs as 45s under the name and yellow label - Songs of the Redmen, Super Chief Indian Records. They were similar to his earlier Tom Toms, but with different label descriptions. Mary-Kay Co. of South El Monte, California re-published some of his recordings in the 1970s.

Archuleta realized that the native people of New Mexico were reluctant to have him record their songs, but once they listened to his recordings and understood that he was helping to preserve their heritage, they began urging him to record their songs. He captured as many authentic Native American songs as he could, always knowing that when old men die they take with them the songs that others had failed to learn. To further this cause he donated his recordings to the University of New Mexico. Musicologists researching Native American songs have found Manuel Archuleta's recordings useful. For example, in Music and Dance of the Tewa People, authors Gertrude Prokosch Kurath and Antonio Garcia have used these recordings along with ethnographers’ film recordings, to combine transcriptions of the music with dance glyphs.

Archuleta worked for the United Pueblos Agency. He sang native songs that he had learned from the old men of his village and started collecting New Mexico Native American songs at the Indian School and various pueblos in 1939. Archuleta’s wife, Alyce Pinno of Laguna, graduated in 1936 from Haskell Indian School with a commercial associates’ degree. She worked for the U.S. Corps of Engineers. Archuleta recorded Alyce's father, George Pinno, known as one of the best song makers of his day. Archuleta lectured at UNM and taught Indian dances and lore in the local schools. He died in November 1963.

Sources: Archuleta, Manuel. “The Chants of my People," The Desert Magazine, October 1949, Vol. 12, No. 12, pp. 12-14

Kurath, Gertrude Prokosch, with Antonio Garcia, Music and Dance of the Tewa Pueblos. Museum of New Mexico Press: Santa Fe, NM. 1970. p. 164;

Levine, Victoria Lindsey. Ed. Writing American Indian Music: Historic Transcriptions, Notations, and Arrangements. Published for American Musicological Society. A-R Editions, Inc.: Middleton, Wisconsin. 2002

Szasz, Ferenc M. Larger Than Life: New Mexico in the Twentieth Century. University of New Mexico Press: Albuquerque. 2006.

Extent

1 box containing 10 CDs (.2 cu. ft.)

Language of Materials

Undetermined

Abstract

The collection contains Native American music from San Juan, San Felipe, Laguna, Taos and Zuni Pueblos, as well as the Navajo and Hopi. The songs were recorded in the 1940s by Manuel Archuleta, of San Juan Pueblo.

Related Material

Paul Tosa Collection of Jemez Pueblo Music Center for Southwest Research, University of New Mexico Indian Music of the Southwest and Mexico Collection Center for Southwest Research, University of New Mexico Sound Recordings of the 44th Inter-Tribal Indian Ceremonial, 1965 Center for Southwest Research, University of New Mexico Collection of Hispanic, Isleta, and Laguna Songs Center for Southwest Research, University of New Mexico Mary Louise Perrine Recordings of Navajo Chants, Songs and Prayers Center for Southwest Research, University of New Mexico Edith Murphy Collection of Pomo and Yuki Recordings Center for Southwest Research, University of New Mexico Charlotte Johnson Frisbie Collection of Navajo Music and Oral histories Center for Southwest Research, University of New Mexico Antonio Garcia Collection of Native American Music of New Mexico and Mexico Center for Southwest Research, University of New Mexico Donald L. Roberts Collection of Music of the Southwest and Mexico Center for Southwest Research, University of New Mexico John Duncan collection of California Maidu oral histories and music and Plains Indian music Center for Southwest Research, University of New Mexico Margaret Hindes Collection of Native American Music of the Western Mono Indians of California and the Sioux of South Dakota Center for Southwest Research, University of New Mexico Maidu-Concow Indian oral history collection Center for Southwest Research, University of New Mexico Odd S. Halseth Collection of Native American Social Songs and Interviews Center for Southwest Research, University of New Mexico John Donald Robb Field Recordings Center for Southwest Research, University of New Mexico James B. Wright Collection of Southwestern Native American and Hispanic Music, Interviews and Literary Programs Center for Southwest Research, University of New Mexico

Separated Material

Reel to reel tapes, vinyl records, and archival CDs are stored on B3.

Processing Information

Vinyl records and reel to reel tapes reformatted to CD in September 2009. In April 2010, Tessa Archuleta Krause and Freida Archuleta Stewart, daughters of Manuel Archuleta, loaned the CSWR twelve original 45 rpms produced by Manuel Archuleta. They were reformatted to a CD and returned to the daughters upon their request. For comparison, several scans were made of the Tom Toms and Super Chiefs to see the difference in the labels, as well as the description of the song and performers.
Title
Finding Aid of the Manuel Archuleta collection of Pueblo Indian, Navajo and Hopi music, ca. 1940-1970
Status
Edited Full Draft
Author
N. Brown-Martinez
Date
© 2009, ©2011
Language of description
English
Script of description
Latin
Language of description note
Finding aid is in English

Revision Statements

  • Monday, 20210524: Attribute normal is missing or blank.

Repository Details

Part of the UNM Center for Southwest Research & Special Collections Repository

Contact:
University of New Mexico Center for Southwest Research & Special Collections
University Libraries, MSC05 3020
1 University of New Mexico
Albuquerque NM 87131
505-277-6451