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Betty Crow Collection

Identifier: MS-0243

Scope and Contents

The Betty Crow Collection was gifted to LaBudde Special Collections by Betty Crow in 2013. The bulk of the collection contains over 2200 photographs from a multitude of musical jam sessions performed at various venues throughout the Kansas City area. There are images of many of the great Kansas City jazz legends such as Jay McShann, Claude “Fiddler” Williams, Milt Abel, Sonny Kenner, Tommy Ruskin, Julie Turner, Jim Mair, Todd Wilkinson, Lonnie and Ronnie McFadden, Paul Smith, Mama Ray and David Basse. Locations include the Levee, Phoenix, Mutual Musicians Foundation (MMF), Plaza III, Jardines, City Lights and more. The photos date mostly from early to mid-1990s and capture the spirit of the Kansas City jazz scene during that time. Also included is a set of original pencil sketches of historical jazz figures by Alexander Austin, a Kansas City muralist who has made his mark on countless local landmarks. There are also various jazz publications and a few miscellaneous documents relating to the MMF, along with some other ephemera.

The first addendum to the collection was gifted by Betty Crow in 2017. The majority of the addendum is dedicated to the MMF operations. The dates range mostly 2000-2010, but there are some earlier documents, including from its formation. Also contained is personal material, including correspondence of Betty Crow not directly addressed to the MMF as well as the book The Life and Times of a Colored Woman: The Autobiography of Mamie Currie Hughes. There is also a handful of promotional posters, mostly for the Kansas City, Kansas, Street Blues Festivals in the 2000s; as well as additional photographs.

The second addendum was gifted by Betty Crow in 2018 and consists of an advertisement for the Subway Nite Club in Kansas City, around 1929-1930.


  • 1929 - 2013


Conditions Governing Use

Copyright status is unknown


12 Linear Feet (LaBudde: 14 Manuscript Boxes.)

Language of Materials


LaBudde: Teresa L. Gipson, Stuart Hinds (supervising archivist); Addendum 1: Lydia Bechtel-Edmonson, Stuart Hinds (supervising archivist); Addendum 2: Kelly McEniry, Stuart Hinds (supervising archivist).
LaBudde: February 2014; Addendum 1: July 2018; Addendum 2: September 2018.
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Script of description

Repository Details

Part of the University of Missouri-Kansas City Special Collections and Archives Repository