History Nebraska Blog

August Hagenow: Violinist – Conductor – Director

The Library/Archives division holds a small collection of materials related to noted musician, August Hagenow.  Born in Germany in 1859, Hagenow studied the violin in Hamburg.  His first tour of the United States came in 1878 with the Red Hussar band.  After several tours of the U.S., Hagenow eventually made his way to Nebraska where he became the leader of the Funke Opera House in Lincoln.  From 1889-1893 he served as violin instructor and orchestra director of the Nebraska Conservatory of Music. Here is a concert program from the Library/Archives collection (click to enlarge).

August Hagenow concert program, front (NSHS RG5000.AM)August Hagenow concert program, front (NSHS RG5000.AM) (left top)

August Hagenow concert program, back (RG5000.AM) (left bottom)

From the Nebraska Conservatory of Music, Hagenow moved to the University School of Music where he served as violin instructor and orchestra director from 1894-1901. Between 1896 and 1906 Hagenow led the Oliver Theater orchestra and from 1902-1910 he served as leader of the University of Nebraska Cadet band. After leaving the University, Hagenow taught high school bands throughout various communities in Nebraska including Sutton, Milford, Pawnee City and Table Rock.

August Hagenow letterhead (NSHS RG5000.AM)August Hagenow letterhead (NSHS RG5000.AM) (Right)

This stationary of August Hagenow shows his schedule of tour dates from 1915. It was during this time that he toured the Midwest on the Chautauqua circuit with his own band. Hagenow eventually retired in Lincoln where he died in 1948. For more information about August Hagenow, contact the Library/Archives division.

-Tom Mooney, Curator of Manuscripts

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