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Bryn Mawr College Songbooks

Identifier: BMC-1WB

Scope and Contents

The Bryn Mawr College Songbook collection consists of 90 unique songbooks ranging from years 1899-present. Some years are not represented in the collection. The songbooks are arranged by date from earliest


  • 1889 - 2013


Limitations on Accessing the Collection

This collection is open for research.

Biographical / Historical

This collection consists of Bryn Mawr College Songbooks from 1899-present. Songbooks are used during the college tradition of Step Sing. The books include traditional class songs, popular songs of the time, and parodies written by students.

The early books are mostly softcover quartos. Over the years, the books become softcover octavos, and the most recent books are pamphlets. There are a handful of hardcover songbooks. The covers are illustrated by students. The earliest books are handwritten, but most are typewritten.

From year to year, the collection of songs varies slightly. While some songs are only found in one edition, some have remained in the repertoire for decades. The earlier songbooks contain songs entirely or partially in French and German. Throughout the years, there are also some songs in Latin and Greek. Most of the books were created solely for traditions but there are a handful intended for special occasions.

This collection can be used to research both traditions at Bryn Mawr, and the Bryn Mawr student experience. The parody songs, by satirizing elements of student life, lend a unique perspective to the study of Bryn Mawr’s past.


6 boxes




This is a collection of Bryn Mawr College Songbooks from 1899-present, historically used during Step Sings. There are 90 different songbooks, some of which have multiple copies. The early books are softcover quartos while the later ones are octavos more similar to pamphlets.

Custodial History

This collection originated at Bryn Mawr College.



Bryn Mawr College Archives Songbooks
Needs Final Processing
Allison Rodgers
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Describing Archives: A Content Standard
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Find It at the Library

Most of the materials in this catalog are not digitized and can only be accessed in person. Please see our website for more information about visiting Bryn Mawr College Library

Bryn Mawr College Library
101 N. Merion Avenue
Bryn Mawr 19010 USA US