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Mike Seeger Research Guide: Home

“Mike was unprecedented. He was like a duke, the knight errant. As for being a folk musician, he was the supreme archetype. He could push a stake through Dracula’s black heart. He was the romantic, egalitarian and revolutionary type all at once—had chivalry in his blood. Like some figure from a restored monarchy, he had come to purify the church.”

       Bob Dylan on Mike Seeger from Chronicles: Volume One

Mike Seeger in Washington Square Park

Mike Seeger in Washington Square Park, photo taken by Ray Sullivan, circa 1957-1960, Ronald D. Cohen Collection (PF-20239/090_1)

Mike Seeger in Washington Square Park, circa 1957-1960, Ronald D. Cohen Collection (PF-20239/098_02)


Inspiring the most prominent artists of the American folk music revival and beyond, Mike Seeger dedicated his life’s work to educating people about the tradition, history, and practice of old-time music from southern Appalachia. The purpose of this LibGuide is to help researchers identify the essential aspects of Seeger’s legacy through the contents of the Mike Seeger Collection. This LibGuide also introduces researchers to other resources relating to old-time and folk music available in the Southern Folklife Collection and Music Library.


This LibGuide is organized into three sections to highlight specific components of Mike Seeger’s life and career:

  1. Seeger Family Influence
  2. The New Lost City Ramblers
  3. Documenting Old-Time Music

Each section of the LibGuide is divided into additional sections that explain the background of each topic and feature materials from the Mike Seeger Collection, other related collections, and the library catalog. 

      4. Other Online Resources

The final section contains supplementary online resources beyond UNC Libraries. 

Finding Aid

This LibGuide does not provide a comprehensive inventory of the contents within the Mike Seeger Collection or serve as a complete overview of the materials related to old-time and folk music housed in the Southern Folklife Collection and Music Library. For the entire contents list of the Mike Seeger Collection, browse the finding aid here.

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Graduate Assistant, Southern Folklife Collection

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Kensington Laube