Utah State University Digital History Collections


Singin' Sam Agins Collection


Document Type

Digital Collection


Merrill-Cazier Library


Singin Sam Agins (1919-1996) was passionate about writing, collecting, and recording American folk songs, especially of the West. He shared his joy of music for four decades (1940s+) by teaching and performing before audiences of dude ranch guests, hospital patients, disabled children, military vets, and even incarcerated prisoners. This collection shows the joy Singin Sam found in playing music. It also contains many unpublished photographs taken for his photo essay Round Legs, showing a gentle humor about wheelchairs and the disability that limited his mobility, but never his spirit. Born weighing only two pounds and with congenital paralysis of both legs, Agins nevertheless grew into a man of many callings: musician, folksinger, poet, and a craftsman of leather, musical instruments and jewelry. The photographs and recordings in this digital collection are just a small portion of the Sam Agins materials in the Merrill-Cazier Library's Special Collections and Archives.