Welcome to the Silent Film Sound & Music Archive. Established in 2014, SFSMA is building a robust archive of music for silent cinema (c. 1895-1930) and related film technologies for research and performance. The archive includes sheet music for film, cue sheets, instruction manuals for film accompanists, and a bibliography of resources on silent film sound and music. All of the silent film music archived here is available to download for free. It can be used for scholarship and research, lectures, to accompany showings of silent films, as the basis for the creation of new scores for old or new movies, and a myriad of other projects calling for music from the silent era.  If you are interested in contributing material to the archive, please contact us at director@sfsma.org. SFSMA is a 501(c)(3) organization.

Searching the Archive

Users can search for items by creator (composer, arranger, or editor), title, mood (“Hurry,” “Mysterioso,” “National”), instrumentation, publisher (including place and date, when known), contributor, and format (book, sheet music, cue sheet). New materials are posted regularly. In some cases, you will find multiple copies of a single work; these are usually from different sources and show performance indicia or contain other information that makes the various copies valuable to researchers. All items in this collection are tagged using Dublin Core metadata.

If you have information on works in the archive that go beyond these categories, or can help us fill in missing information on a work, please include it in a comment and we will incorporate it into the file. If you’d like to be credited, please include your name, initials, or other preferred identifier.

The vast majority of materials posted here are in the public domain. All works are posted under an ODC-By (Open Data Commons Attribution) License.

SFSMA gratefully acknowledges support from the Grammy Foundation, the Society for American Music, and individual donors and sponsors.