J.L. Peters

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The founder of the firm, John L. Peters, was a music publisher and dealer in St. Louis and New York between 1851 and 1892, first with his father W.C. (William Cummings) Peters, then on his own. Peters published several compilations of piano works in subscription or periodical form, e.g. La Crême de la Crême (misspelling theirs), some of which have been scanned in the Library of Congress' American Memory Project. He also was active in publishing songs of the American poet and composer William Shakespeare Hays.

In 1866 Peters acquired the Cincinnati music company of his brother Alfred C. Peters (A.C. Peters & Bro. which had been founded in 1846 as W.C. Peters & Co.). At this time Peters relocated his business headquarters from St. Louis to New York.

C.H. Ditson, describing itself on its covers as Successor to J.L. Peters, purchased Peters' New York business in 1877. Peters returned to St. Louis in 1881. According to the Handbook of Early American Sheet Music Peters is supposed to have sold his St. Louis (and possibly also the Cincinnati) business to J.J. Dobmeyer and Co. but later purchased it back. Peters' St. Louis-based company continued in operation until 1892.

  • Note: Not the same as W.C. Peters of Pittsburgh, though this was probably(?) his father's company, W.C. (for William Cummings), with no relationship to C.F. Peters of Germany.


Imprints, Addresses, Agencies


  • J.L Peters
  • J.L. Peters & Co.
  • J.L. Peters & Bro.
  • John L. Peters
  • Peters Music Co.


  • St. Louis, 212 N. 5th St. (1859–1871, 1881–1883)
  • St. Louis, 307 N. 5th St. (1881–1883)
  • St. Louis, 307 N. Broadway (1884–1885)
  • St. Louis, 1011 Olive St. (1886)
  • St. Louis, 1102 Olive St. (1887–1889)
  • St. Louis, 224 N. 4th St. (1890–1891)
  • St. Louis, 822 Olive St. (1892)
  • New York, 200 Broadway (1866)
  • New York, 198 Broadway (1868–1869)
  • New York, 599 Broadway (1870–1874)
  • New York, 843 Broadway (1875–?)

Plate Numbers

New York

Plate Composer Work Year
07021 Bowman Sky Lark 1871
07122 Browne Forever Thine 1872
07355 Stewart A Summer's Night, Op.59 1873
07588 Stewart Hippodrome, Op.127 1874
09464 Danks Annie Dear 1876
09845 Wilson Evening Bells, Op.57 1874
09910 Wilson A Winter Night, Op.78 1876
10154 Donizetti L'elisir d'amore (Barcarole "Io son ricco e tu sei bella", arr. piano C. Kinkel) 1875
10282 Abt 4 Lieder, Op.124 (No.1 trans. by Barnett) 1873
10499 Maylath Always Ready 1875
10648 Wiegand Fusileers' March 1875
11246 Hatton Ripe Strawberries 1876

St. Louis

Plate Composer Work Year
120 Norvel Alpine Maidens (pf4h) 1883
153 Norvel Alpine Maidens (solo) 1883

Authority control

  • VIAF (Peters, J. L. (John L.))


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