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Harpo Kidwell papers

Identifier: M033

Scope and Content of the Papers

These papers consist of fifty-two photographs, a single piece of sheet music, three folders of printed materials, and one oversize folder relating to Harpo Kidwell and his career in country music. Included in the photographs are images of Kidwell alone, of Kidwell with various groups with whom he performed, and of other contemporary country musicians. The sheet music is a photocopy of "Moss Covered Mill," with words and music by Pete Cassell and Harpo Kidwell. The first of the three folders contains a letter and photocopies of handbills, programs, and clippings about Kidwell and his appearances in Ohio and Georgia. The second folder includes photocopies of WLW log sheets from 1952. In the third folder is a photocopy of an undated magazine titled Country Song Roundup that includes an article on the "Midwestern Hayride," the WLW show in which Kidwell appeared during the 1950s.

The oversize folder contains photocopies of clippings and handbills documenting Kidwell's professional activities.


  • 1937-1978


Restrictions on Access

Unrestricted access.

Terms Governing Use and Reproduction

To quote in print, or otherwise reproduce in whole or in part in any publication, including on the Worldwide Web, any material from this collection, the researcher must obtain permission from (1) the owner of the physical property and (2) the holder of the copyright. Persons wishing to quote from this collection should consult the reference archivist to determine copyright holders for information in this collection. Reproduction of any item must contain the complete citation to the original.

Biography of Harpo Kidwell

Horace "Harpo" Kidwell was born on December 18, 1910, in South Irvine, Kentucky. As a member of Glenn Hughes's Roundup Gang, Kidwell primarily established himself as one of the most popular, well-known harmonica players active in Atlanta's early country music scene. Along with harmonica, he played guitar and sang, appearing on WSB Radio's "Cross Roads Follies" program from 1941 to 1953, later moving north to work on WLW's "Midwestern Hayride," broadcast out of Cincinnati simultaneously on radio and television, and NBC's "Cincinnati Music Hall." His compositions include "Boo Hoo Blues" and "Harpo's Waltz." A 1987 inductee in the Atlanta Country Music Hall of Fame, Harpo Kidwell died December 29, 2003, in Adairsville, Georgia.


0.2 Linear Feet (in 7 folders)

Language of Materials



Horace "Harpo" Kidwell (1910-2003) was one of the most popular, well-known harmonica players active in Atlanta's early country music scene. He appeared on WSB Radio's "Cross Roads Follies" program, 1941-1953, and later on radio and television broadcasts from Cincinnati. His papers consist of fifty-two photographs, sheet music for one of his compositions, a letter, and photocopies of handbills, programs, a logbook, and clippings.

Acquisition Information

Donated by Horace ("Harpo") Kidwell, October 1984 (M1984-19).

Related Archival Materials

The Popular Music and Culture Collection include numerous photographs that have been digitized and are available online in Georgia State University Library Digital Collections.

Separated Materials

During processing various materials were separated to other Popular Music and Culture Music Collections. Consult the University Library's online catalog or contact Special Collections for access to sheet music.

Popular Music Sheet Music Collection

  1. Moss Covered Mill, words and music by Pete Cassell and Harpo Kidwell


Further information on Kidwell can be found in:
  • Wayne Daniel, Pickin' on Peachtree, (Chicago and Urbana: University of Illinois Press, 1990).

Processing Information

Processed by Christopher Ann Paton and Christine de Catanzaro at the file level, October 1987.
Harpo Kidwell:
A Guide to His Papers at Georgia State University Library
Georgia State University Library
October 1987
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Script of description

Revision Statements

  • September 1998: Finding aid revised.
  • June 27, 2008: EAD finding aid created by William Hardesty.

Repository Details

Part of the Special Collections Repository

100 Decatur St., S.E.
Atlanta, Georgia 30303
404-413-2881 (Fax)