The Library of Congress
[American Memory]

Emile Berliner and the Birth of the Recording Industry home page image
Motion Picture, Broadcasting and Recorded Sound Division, Library of Congress

Search by Keyword | Browse by Title Index | Subject Index | Series Index | Name Index | Recordings
Emile Berliner and the Birth of the Recording Industry is a selection of more than 400 items from the Emile Berliner Papers and 108 Berliner sound recordings from the Library of Congress's Motion Picture, Broadcasting and Recorded Sound Division. Berliner (1851-1929), an immigrant and a largely self-educated man, was responsible for the development of the microphone and the flat recording disc and gramophone player. Although the focus of this online collection is on the gramophone and its recordings, it includes much evidence of Berliner's other interests, such as information on his businesses, his crusades for the pasteurization of milk and other public-health issues, his philanthropy, his musical composition, and even his poetry. Spanning the years 1870 to 1956, the collection comprises correspondence, articles, lectures, speeches, scrapbooks, photographs, catalogs, clippings, experiment notes, and rare sound recordings.
The mission of the Library of Congress is to make its resources available and useful to Congress and the American people and to sustain and preserve a universal collection of knowledge and creativity for future generations. The goal of the Library's National Digital Library Program is to offer broad public access to a wide range of historical and cultural documents as a contribution to education and lifelong learning.

The Library of Congress presents these documents as part of the record of the past. These primary historical documents reflect the attitudes, perspectives, and beliefs of different times. The Library of Congress does not endorse the views expressed in these collections, which may contain materials offensive to some readers.

Special Presentation: Emile Berliner: Inventor of the Gramophone
Understanding the Collection

About the Collection

Building the Digital Collection

Selected Bibliography

Related Resources

From the Learning Page
Collection Connection

Working with the Collection

How to Listen to Sound Recordings

How to View Motion Pictures

How to Order Copies of Sound Recordings | Text |
Photographs | Motion Pictures

Copyright and Other Restrictions

Cataloging the Collection


American Memory | Search All Collections | Collection Finder | Learning Page
Please Read Our
Legal Notices