Henry Tolman



Henry Tolman (January 15, 1821, Boston, MA—November 20, 1888, Cohasset, MA) had operated his own firm dealing in musical instruments and umbrellas since 1846 and had began publishing in 1849. In the early 1850s he merged with George D. Russell to form Russell & Tolman. One of the most significant music publishers in the United States during the 19th century, Russell & Tolman published a great deal of popular music as well as works of noted American composers such as George F. Root. They also sold pianos.

After the dissolution of Russell & Tolman in 1862, Tolman took over the catalogue and continued until 1870 as Henry Tolman & Co. He sold his sheet music plates to Root & Cady in 1868.

From 1862 to 1868 he was the sole publisher of the Boston Musical Times and in 1865 was elected vice-president of the Board of Music Trade.

Russell was joined by his brother Joseph M. Russell in 1863 to form G.D. Russell & Co., a similar publishing and dealing business, which also undertook printing work.

Imprints and Addresses

  • 54 & 56 Court Street (1846)
  • 153 Washington Street (1847-December 1854)
  • 151 Washington (Jan. 1855)
  • 291 Washington Street (1856); later as Russell & Tolman at same address

Plate Numbers

As Henry Tolman & Co., Tolman generally did not use plate numbers. Upon merger with Russell as Russell & Tolman:

  • 3257 (November 9, 1858)
  • 3284 (December 12, 1858)

Plate Composer Work Year
Gilmore Freedom on the Old Plantation 1866
2891 Grobe Capture of Fort Donelson, Op.1396 1862
3017 Bovy-Lysberg Le hamac, Op.40
5062 Turner Live But One Moment! 1865

Sources Consulted

  • Ostrove, Geraldine. "Russell & Tolman." New Grove Online accessed 21 December 2011.
  • Epstein, Dena J., "Music Publishing in Chicago before 1871: Chapter V. The Post-War Years, 1866-1868." Notes, vol. 2, no. 3 (June 1945), p. 208, 210-211.
  • Worldcat, www.worldcat.org, accessed 22 December 2011.

Authority control

  • VIAF (Henry Tolman (firm))