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Carlton and Charles Haney papers

Identifier: AC-815

Scope and Contents

The collection contains personal papers including correspondence, photographs of Carlton and Charles Haney, financial information, business records from Haney's convenience store, songwriting royalty invoices, newsclippings, and Country and Bluegrass music ephemera. Materials related to Haney's festivals include planning information for festivals in North Carolina and Virginia, correspondence with entertainers, contracts, posters and publicity materials, and information on other festivals not produced by Haney. Artists Management contains information on the planning, booking, publicity, and relationships with artists booked by Haney, especially those artists booked by Haney for Country shows held in the mid-1960s. Series IV: Publications consists of financial, editorial, and publicity materials related to the production of Muleskinner News, Grassound, and Music City News. Series V: Recordings holds reel-to-reel recordings of Haney's Blue Grass Festivals as well as 45 rpm discs produced by Haney. Series VI: Artifacts includes Carlton Haney's International Bluegrass Music Association Hall of Fame plaque, Carlton Haney's International Bluegrass Music Association Lifetime Membership plaque, Wade Mainer's Pioneer Hall of Fame Award, and a Bill Monroe collectible plate.

The recordings in Series V are digitized and available as a digital collection. For link see the "Digital Material" section in the Series V description.


  • 1947-2011, undated


The materials are in English.

Conditions Governing Access

No interlibrary loan.

Access Restrictions

The materials are open for research in the Dougherty Reading Room.

Biographical Note

Carlton Haney (September 19, 1928, Reidsville, Carolina- March 16, 2011, Greensboro, North Carolina) was a noted festival organizer, promoter, and manager in the fields of Bluegrass and Country music. Haney began his career booking and promoting shows for Bill Monroe and the Blue Grass Boys from 1953 through 1955. He managed bluegrass act Reno and Smiley from 1956 until 1965 and collaborated on several songs with the group including "Jimmy Caught the Dickens (For Pushing Ernest in the Tubb)" which reached number 27 on the Country Charts in 1961. From 1956 through 1964 he produced the New Dominion Barn Dance which broadcast on WRVA-AM, Richmond, Virginia.

In 1965, Haney organized The Blue Grass Festival held at Fincastle, Virginia on Labor Day weekend, September 3-5. The event was the first multi-day festival dedicated to Bluegrass music. Among the performers at the festival were Bill Monroe and the Bluegrass Boys, Jimmy Martin and the Sunny Mountain Boys, Clyde Moody, Don Reno and the Tennessee Cut-Ups, Red Smiley and the Bluegrass Cut-Ups, The Stanley Brothers and the Clinch Mountain Boys, Mac Wiseman, and Doc Watson. A highlight of the event was a program called The Story of Bluegrass which reunited Bill Monroe with his former sidemen to reenact his musical career. The festival continued at Fincastle in 1966, then at Berryville, Virginia in 1967 and 1968, before moving to Camp Springs, North Carolina in 1969. Haney went on organize and promote festivals at Gettysburg, Pennsylvania and Escoheag, Rhode Island. In addition to the Labor Day Festival, Haney founded the Newgrass Music Festival at Camp Springs in 1972.

Throughout his career Haney both worked with and managed a number of influential Country and Bluegrass artists including Conway Twitty, Merle Haggard, The Osborne Brothers, Loretta Lynn, Porter Wagoner, Dolly Parton, Ray Price, Kitty Wells, and Norma Jean. He appears as an emcee on two live Merle Haggard albums, Okie From Muskogee (1969) and The Fightin' Side of Me (1970), as well as performing the recitation portion of Conway Twitty's "Papa Sing A Song For Me" (1969). Haney published two magazines for Bluegrass enthusiasts Muleskinner News (1969-1988) and Grassound (1974-1979). His 1971 Labor Day Festival at Camp Springs was captured in the 1971 film Bluegrass Country Soul, directed by Albert Ihde. He was presented the International Bluegrass Music Association's Award of Merit in 1990 and was inducted into the International Bluegrass Hall of Fame in 1998. During his later years Haney stepped away from the music business and ran The Bluegrass Two Market in Reidsville, North Carolina.

The collection was donated by Charles Haney, Carlton's brother and the person who first introduced Carlton to Country and Bluegrass music, and Carlton's daughter, Bonnie.


36.75 Linear Feet (23 manuscript boxes, 2 half sized, 7 record boxes, 4 flat boxes, 2 large shoe boxes, 8 small shoe boxes, 1 small disc box)


The Carlton and Charles Haney Papers contain materials related to the personal and professional life of Bluegrass and Country music promoter Carlton Haney. Included within the collection are personal papers, financial records, materials on the production and publicity of music festivals, contracts with performers, and publicity photographs of various Bluegrass and Country music entertainers. The papers contain financial, editorial, and subscription information about music publications published by Haney, including Muleskinner News, Grassound, and Music Country. Also included are reel-to-reel recordings of festivals produced by Haney in North Carolina and Virginia.


Series I: Personal Papers, Series II: Festivals, Series III: Artist Management, and Series IV: Publications are all arranged alphabetically.

Series V: Recordings contains reels arranged by date, divided into sets by year recorded. The reels are followed by DVDs, VHS, an 8mm film reel, and audio cassettes. 45 rpm discs are listed alphabetically by title at the end of the series.

Series VI: Artifacts are arranged by the location of individual items within the box.

Immediate Source of Acquisition

The materials were donated by Charles Haney and were officially gifted to the W. L. Eury Appalachian Collection in an agreement signed January 30, 2014.

Processing Information

The materials initially donated were processed by David H. McRae in 2014. The reels in Series V: Recordings were processed and arranged by Matt Ransom in 2014. The collection was reprocessed with additions and arranged by Trevor McKenzie, March 2015.

Trevor McKenzie and David H. McRae
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Repository Details

Part of the Special Collections Research Center Repository