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On April 7, 2018, the Johnson Victrola Museum conducted a rededication ceremony celebrating the 50th anniversary of the opening of the museum which highlights the life and achievements of Dover’s native son, Eldridge Reeves Johnson, founder of The Victor Talking Machine Company. Located at 375 S. New St. in Delaware’s capital city, the museum showcases a wide variety of talking machines, trademarks, recordings, objects, paintings and advertisements to tell the story of Johnson’s life, his company and the development of the sound-recording industry. Constructed by the State of Delaware with an endowment provided by the Johnson family, it opened to the public on Dec. 14, 1967.
In attendance at the ceremony were 10 descendants and extended family members of Eldridge Reeves Johnson, as well as a number of elected officials including Dover Mayor Robin R. Christiansen and Kent County Levy Court Commissioner James E. Hosfelt, Jr.
In addition to the rededication of the museum, the program included a theatrical presentation by historical interpreter Steven Mumford as Francis Barraud, the artist who painted “His Master’s Voice”; and members of Don-Del Productions performing songs from classic Victor recordings.
The ceremony concluded with awards presented to members of the Johnson family for their efforts in support of the museum; to Don-Del Productions for the many performances that they have given at the museum; and to Andreas Lang who has repaired countless Victor Talking Machines.