If these walls could jump 'n' jive : a study of buildings and sites associated with jazz music in Indianapolis and Richmond, Indiana (c. 1910-1960)

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Archer, Russell W.
Wolner, Edward W.
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Thesis (M.S.H.P.)
Department of Architecture
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Indiana is a state rich in musical history. Two cities, in particular-Indianapolis and Richmond-have played significant roles in the evolution and dissemination of jazz music. There have been modest attempts to acknowledge and/or educate Hoosiers about the state's role in the development of ja7.z. However, a level of apathy remains with regard to this aspect of Indiana's cultural heritage. These factors, in conjunction with new development, socioeconomic hardship, and demolition by neglect, have resulted in the loss of countless buildings and sites associated with jazz, music in Indianapolis and Richmond.In the Circle City, Indiana Avenue was a hotbed of ja77. for decades, as were many other scattered downtown sites. All but just a few of these venues are extant today. In Richmond, the Gennett recording studio welcomed the greatest of the early jazz pioneers and pressed millions of records of this genre. The Gennett site lies in ruins today, consisting of remnants of only three structures.There is a need to heighten awareness of the buildings and sites that contributed to the thriving jazz scene in these two cities for the purpose of education, preservation, and interpretation. This thesis has attempted to document and inventory the historical resources associated with jazz in Indianapolis and Richmond in order to facilitate these processes. In addition to the inventory, the two cities are examined in the context of jazz history in Indiana, and current building and site conditions are discussed.