Skip to main content
Please contact the Booth Family Center for Special Collections for assistance with accessing these materials.

Jimmy Moxon Collection of Louis Armstrong Materials

Identifier: GTM-151208

Scope and Contents

Correspondence, manuscript material, printed ephemera and memorabilia, photographs, and phonographic records related to jazz artist Louis Armstrong and compiled by Jimmy Moxon, a colonial officer and Ghanaian civil servant who organized Armstrong's two-day visit to perform at Accra, Ghana, in May 1956. Of particular note are Moxon's original unpublished manuscript account of the visit, personal mementos, signed invitations and photographs, press notices, programs, and large broadsides advertising Armstrong's performances while in Ghana.


  • 1947 - 1979
  • Majority of material found within 1953 - 1956

Conditions Governing Access

Most manuscripts collections at the Georgetown University Booth Family Center for Special Collections are open to researchers; however, restrictions may apply to some collections. Collections stored off site require a minimum of three days for retrieval. For use of all manuscripts collections, researchers are advised to contact the Booth Family Center for Special Collections in advance of any visit.

Conditions Governing Use

Researchers are solely responsible for determining the copyright status of the materials being used, establishing who the copyright owner is, locating the copyright owner, and obtaining permission for intended use.

Biographical and Historical note

Jimmy Moxon, a colonial officer and Ghanaian civil servant, organized Louis Armstrong's two-day visit to Accra, Ghana, in May 1956, at the urging of Edward R. Murrow, the news broadcaster most closely associated with CBS, who partially sponsored the visit. An accompanying CBS camera crew filmed Armstrong, Lucille and his band, the All-Stars, to provide material for Murrow’s weekly program "See it Now” in a segment later titled “Satchmo the Great.” Ten thousand people turned out to greet Armstrong and his entourage at the airport and every event on the schedule was packed. Moxon, as the organizer of the trip, ensured that the visit ran smoothly, even rescheduling the performance time to the afternoon when it became clear that the camera crew would not have enough light to film at night.

Armstrong and his wife, Lucille, stayed with Moxon during their visit and by several accounts enjoyed their time in Ghana. (Moxon was later a guest of the Armstongs on a visit to New York.) The significance of the trip was heightened as Ghana was about to become the first African nation to declare its independence from Great Britain, with the formal declaration occurring on March 6, 1957.

Born in Shrewsbury, England, and educated at Cambridge, Moxon moved to Ghana at age 22. His wide-ranging career included writing, bookselling and publishing, as well as serving as a colonial officer and Ghanaian civil servant. He was the sole white traditional ruler and member of the House of Gods of Ghana. Known as a raconteur and restauranteur, Moxon was ideally placed to receive Louis Armstrong on his visit to Ghana in 1956. Moxon was a District Commissioner, who played a significant role in establishing the Ghana Information Service, notably its film unit. He was friendly with Kwame Nkrumah, Ghana's first president, who insisted he remain in Ghana after independence and employed him as an adviser.

Source: Auction description


0.5 Cubic Feet (7 folders, 5 phonograph records, and 3 broadsides)

Language of Materials


Metadata Rights Declarations

Immediate Source of Acquisition

Purchase, 2015.

Processing Information

The collection was physically rearranged for preservation purposes in 2023. Items in the collection were moved to boxes that were more appropriately sized.

Jimmy Moxon Collection of Louis Armstrong Materials
Matthew Darby
2018 June
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Script of description

Revision Statements

  • 2023: Physically rearranged and edited for DACS compliance by John Zarrillo

Repository Details

Part of the Georgetown University Manuscripts Repository

Lauinger Library, 5th Floor
37th and O Streets, N.W.
Washington DC 20057