The Virginia Folklore Society

VFS Bulletins

Books & Articles


Folklore & Folklife in Virginia

Publications of The Virginia Folklore Society have appeared in varied formats at irregular intervals since 1913: subject to the interests, time, and dedication of individual officers/members or the particular needs of the Society in different phases of its history. For more details of this history see VFS Retrospective.

VFS Bulletins:
Twelve issues of the Bulletin, the first publication of the Virginia Folklore Society, appeared between 1913 and 1924. It communicated the VFS charter and goals to members, reported on annual meetings, directed and gave progress reports on the Society's ballad collecting efforts, and listed the names and locations of members in those early days.
Books & Articles:
Under the editorship of Arthur Kyle Davis, Jr. (VFS archivist between 1923 and 1972), three major volumes dealt authoritatively with the ballad and other folksong materials collected during the Society's early years and made valuable contributions to contemporary ballad scholarship. These historically important works, all of which are out-of-print or rare at the present time, are as follow:
  • Traditional Ballads of Virginia.
    Cambridge: Harvard University Press, 1929 (rep. Charlottesville: The University Press of Virginia, 1969).
  • Folk-Songs of Virginia: A Descriptive Index and Classification.
    Durham: Duke University Press, 1949 (rep. New York: AMS Press, Inc., 1965).
  • More Traditional Ballads of Virginia.
    Chapel Hill: The University of North Carolina Press, 1960.

A bibliography of articles and works relevant to the Society or its members is being compiled and will be posted shortly.

In the years between 1924 (when publication of the Bulletin ended) and 1974, Professor A.K. Davis, Jr. intermittently published articles soliciting folksongs and other items of folklore in The University of Virginia News Letter. Otherwise, there seems to have been no formal channel of regular communication among VFS membership during that period.

The Virginia Folklore Society began a new series of newsletters with Volume 1, Number 1, published under the direction of its recently elected archivist/editor Charles L. Perdue, Jr., in April 1974. This publication has continued, more or less regularly, under the heading of various editors to the present. As they become available, the most recent VFS newsletter will be posted at this site. The next newsletter should be available soon. Keep looking for it here.
Journal of the Virginia Folklore Society: Folklore and Folklife in Virginia
Four occasional journals have been published by the Society beginning with Volume 1, 1979 and continuing with Volume 2, 1980-1981, Volume 3, 1984, and Volume 4, 1988. The first two volumes are no longer in print, but are in the process of being made available on-line.
      You can go directly to the portion of Volume 1 completed thus far by way of its cover link or you can check out the Table of Contents for each of the four journals to find specific articles that interest you.
      If you wish to order copies of the still available Volumes 3 or 4, you may do so using the printable journal order form.

Folklore and Folklife
in Virginia, Volume 1, 1979

c/o Department of English, 219 Bryan Hall, Charlottesville, VA 22903

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Last updated on June 26, 1998