A Unit of the Center for Appalachian Studies & Services at East Tennessee State University
Attention bluegrass fanatics! For all of those bluegrass lovers, appreciators, or just those with a mild interest, a new addition to the Archives of Appalachia is underway. The Leon McIntyre Collection entails an extensive amount of material related to the bluegrass music genre. Leon, also known as Les, is an Erwin, Tennessee native whose love and appreciation of bluegrass and country music far surpassed his numerous other hobbies. While living an active professional life with the U.S. Army, Department of Defense, and the U.S Coast Guard, he maintained an active role in the promotion of bluegrass music. Les, an ETSU graduate, donated his collection of bluegrass music, research, and memorabilia to the Archives of Appalachia for public use.
During his lifetime, Les belonged to numerous bluegrass bands including his own band called “None of the Above.” Les also organized and ran a late night bluegrass and old time country western music station on WAMU 88.5 in Washington DC. Later in life, he reviewed new and upcoming bands for the popular bluegrass publication, Bluegrass Unlimited. His pronounced knowledge and love for this genre of music landed him a prestigious role in the International Bluegrass Music Association (IBMA) showcases as a backstage and event manager. Ranging from 1970 to 2011, the collection encompasses private correspondence, photographs, records of various bluegrass organizations such as WAMU and IBMA, a vast amount of resource material collected and compiled by Les, reference materials, memorabilia, cassette recordings of interviews and talk shows, and reels of live recordings and WAMU broadcasts. Les also donated an impressive amount of CDs and LPs that now rest in the Archive’s media collection. The donation of commercial media dates back to the 1940s and includes 45’s, 33’s, 78’s, CD’s, and cassettes. His donation even contained a piece of the original Birchmere floor.
The collection is currently “in process” but will be open to research in the next couple of months. Undoubtedly, this collection is a spectacular addition to the Archives and we’re pleased to have it. If you cannot find a certain bluegrass band anywhere else, there is a good chance you will find it at the Archives of Appalachia!
If you have any questions regarding this collection feel free to contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org.