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Alabama Speech Records

Identifier: 2015-001

Scope and Contents

The collection contains four reel-to-reel tapes made by University of Alabama professors I. Willis Russell and James B. McMillan, as part of a UA Research Grant in 1940-1941. The purpose of the grant was to study the different speech patterns and intonations of Alabamians from each county in the state. Each participant read the same two scripts that included most of the variable speech sounds and features of American English and Southern American English. Also included are copies of the two texts read as well as index cards containing biographical (no names) and socio-economic facts for each participant.


  • 1940 - 1941


Conditions Governing Access

Collection is open for research. Researchers must register and agree to copyright and privacy laws before using this collection. Manuscript collections and archival records may contain materials with sensitive or confidential information that is protected under federal or state right to privacy laws and regulations. Due to the nature of certain archival formats, including digital and audio-visual materials, access to certain materials may require additional advance notice.

Conditions Governing Use

Researchers are responsible for using the materials in conformance with United States copyright law as well as any donor restrictions accompanying the materials. The user assumes all responsibility for identifying and satisfying any copyright claimants in collection materials. Copyright for official University records is held by The University of Alabama. The library claims only physical ownership of many manuscript collections. Anyone wishing to broadcast or publish this material must assume all responsibility for identifying and satisfying any claimants of literary property rights or copyrights. Please contact Special Collections ( with questions regarding specific manuscript collections. For more information about copyright policy, please visit: Any materials used for academic research or otherwise should be fully credited with the source. Researchers are advised that the disclosure of certain information pertaining to identifiable living individuals without the consent of those individuals may have legal implications, for which the University of Alabama assumes no responsibility.

Biographical / Historical

I. Willis Russell and James B. McMillan were professors in the Speech Department at the University of Alabama in the 1940s.


0.4 Linear Feet (5 reels; papers)

Language of Materials



Recordings made by two University of Alabama professors as part of a UA Research Grant, studying the different speech patterns and intonations of each county in the state

Immediate Source of Acquisition

Gift of Cynthia Lanford, 2005

Processing Information

Processed by Martha Bace and Marina Klaric, 2015



Guide to Alabama Speech Records
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Script of description

Repository Details

Part of the The University of Alabama Libraries Special Collections Repository

Box 870266
Tuscaloosa AL 35487-0266