Louis Spencer Salter Music Scholarships


The Norman Lions Club awards two music scholarships every year in the amount of $500 each, one for instrumental music and one for vocal music.  The Vocal Scholarship has been given as long as I have been a member (said by Irv Wagner - over 50 years) and was likely started by Lewis S. Salter, himself. The Instrumental Scholarship was added sometime back in the 1970's or 80’s.


Some notable winners include:


Celia Wollenberg-OU Voice Faculty

Hanna Roberts-pianist on the faculty at University of Alabama

Julie Davis-an international opera singer

Nicole Keeling-active opera singer in the USA


Who was Lewis Spencer Salter?

Grave Site Marker at I00F



Born:  March 23, 1891 in Argonia, Kansas-.just south of Wichita


Died:  Lewis S. Salter died July 23, 1965


Father:  His father was Lewis A. Salter, who was the son of Melville Salter, who was an early Lieutenant Governor of Kansas.  Lewis was the 7th of 9 Children born of "Lewis A.” and "Dora" Salter.


Mother: His Mother, "Dora" Salter served as Mayor of Argonia - perhaps the first woman mayor in the United States.


Early childhood:  Lewis A. Salter" fled a claim near Alva in 1893 after the Land Run and moved there. The father, "Lewis A." died in 1916, and the mother, “Dora," moved the family to Norman so that her children could attend the University of Oklahoma.  Dora died in 1961 a the age of 101.


Education:  Lewis S. Salter graduated from the Preparatory School operated by the University of Oklahoma.  He first went to Bethany College in Lindsborg, Kansas but returned home to Norman in 1907.  He received a Bachelor of Music Degree in 1912 and a Bachelor of Arts Degree in 1917.  He received a Master Arts Degree from Columbia University in 1922.

Career:  Lewis was appointed an assistant teacher in piano at OU in 1911 while still an undergraduate student.  Upon graduation in 1912 he was immediately named an instructor in piano and Harmony.  He was promoted to Associate Professor in 1917and appointed Professor Music and Music Education in 1926.  He served as Director of the School of Music from 1936 to 1946 as well as Dean of the College of Fine Arts from 1936 to 1947.  Lewis was named Dean Emeritis in 1948.  Lewis was Professor of Music from 1948 on to 1961 when he retired.  During those last nine years he was also the Music Librarian.  According to information at the time-it is said "he served the University of Oklahoma for 50 years-longer than any faculty member before or since“. (Irv Wagner has him beat already by being here 52 years).


Professional Items:

Studied Piano at Bush Temple Conservatory in Chicago.

Studied Organ with David McKay Williams in New York.

Studied piano with Dr. Hans Weisse in Vienna, Austria

Became President of the Association of Music Executives in State University in 1939 and Chair of the Music Examining Committee

Appointed to the Oklahoma State Board of Education in 1944, and a member of the College Music Curriculum Committee of the Oklahoma State Regents of Higher Education in 1945.

Was a member of the National Eduction Association, the Oklahoma Music Teacher Association, the Music Educators National Association, Music Teachers National Association, the Association of Schools of Music, and the American Association of University Professors


Other Special Activities:

World War I was in the 136th Infantry and with the 151st Army Field Band with 6 month overseas.

Member of Phi Beta Kappa, Phi Mu Alpha

Was a Mason (33rd degree Shriner) and American Legion 

A member of the First Baptist church




A member of the NORMAN LION'S CLUB


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