Plan for Valparaíso’s musical heritage digitisation (1870-1930): scores and 78rpm discs (EAP359)

Aims and objectives

This project aims to recapture the sound of Valparaiso from 1870 to 1930, through the digitisation and dissemination of the Margot Loyola Fund collections. This will involve the digitisation of the originals, the documentation and description of the collections, storage in acid-free containers, and free access to the institutional website.

The original material consists of 170 records: 78 rpm shellac disc ("Victrola" disc) dating from the 1920s and 1930s, containing about 400 songs. It is worth noting that the masters of these discs no longer exist due to technological changes and storage problems. The collection also has 800 scores dating from 1870 to 1930. This includes scores published in Chile between 1875 and 1930, mainly containing music of both aristocratic saloons and the saloons of the incipient Chilean middle class of that period. The collections contain folk music such as cuecas, tonadas, songs, Mexican corridos, boleros, tango as well as classical music in simplified versions and saloon music such as habaneras, mazurkas and waltzes. There is also secondary information of great interest for research, such as front-cover images and commercial adverts on back covers.

Visit the project website to listen to some sample recordings.


The project digitised 134 discs, creating 284 audio files in total. The collection is catalogued but currently only available in person at the British Library. We hope to make it available on the BL Sounds platform soon, where the tracks will be streamable worldwide.