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About the Music Library

Historical Overview of the Music Library

A department of J.Y. Joyner Library and its only branch, the Music Library is located on the first floor of the A.J. Fletcher Music Center. This gem in the musical crown of eastern North Carolina is the largest music collection east of Raleigh. As such, it has grown from its original purpose of serving the educational mission of East Carolina University’s School of Music to serving the needs of music lovers, performers, and educators from all parts of the eastern North Carolina region, while continuing its primary focus on the needs of East Carolina University students, faculty, and staff, particularly the School of Music and the School of Theatre and Dance.

The Music Library has grown from its humble beginnings as a small departmental collection in 1958. In the early 1960s a retired music professor, Dan Vornholt, became the first music librarian. During that same time period the first dean of the School of Music, Earl Beach, established space for a music library in the school’s new facility which opened its doors in 1967. During their 1973 site visit, the National Association of Schools of Music accreditation team recommended putting the administration of the collection in the hands of library professionals, and on July 1, 1974 responsibility was transferred to Joyner Library. Since that time, the staff has expanded to include two faculty music librarians and three library assistants, and the collection has grown from just 20,000 volumes to over 101,000.

View a full timeline of the Music Library's history

The Music Library is home to Joyner’s entire audio recording collection as well as the music-related portion of its video recording collection. In addition to these media collections the library owns collections of music scores, books, journals, microforms, and computer software dealing with every musical style and genre from classical to rock to reggae. Extended details about the library's collections are provided in the Music Library Collection Development Procedure. The library also provides a computer/listening lab, study space, audio and video dubbing service and music reference assistance (including regularly scheduled reference desk service and on-demand service during hours the reference desk is unstaffed.)  For more about the Music Library's services, watch our virtual tour

Collection Statistics

Volumes held as of July 1, 2016, rounded to the nearest hundred

  • CDs - 29,100
  • Audio Cassettes - 1,300
  • LPs - 3,000
  • DVDs - 1,600
  • Video Cassettes - 100
  • Scores - 40,000
  • Books and Journals - 20,000
  • Microforms - 1,100
  • Other - 700

ECU Alma Mater

The Music Library receives questions about ECU's musical history. One of the most frequent requests is for information about ECU's Alma Mater and its history.

The ECU Alma Mater is "Hail to Thy Name So Fair". It first appeared in the 1940-41 ECTC Student Handbook where it was attributed to a student by the name of Harold A. McDougle ('44). McDougle later became a part-time instructor in the Music Department at ECTC (1946-47) and a music teacher at Greenville High School (1947-48). The lyrics to the second line of the song have changed from "Your joys we'll share" in the 1940-41 handbook to "Your joys we'll all share" in the present version.

Printed music for alma mater, SATB chorus: MusicLib M1959.E27 H3 2000
Listen to the ECU Alma Mater
More information on other ECU songs