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Roland Diggle Collection

Identifier: MS 50


The collection consists of photos, scrapbook, recital programs, church service programs, and compositions that document Roland Diggle’s life and career as a church musician and performing artist.


  • 1908–1954

Biographical / Historical

Roland H. Diggle (1885–1954) was born in London on January 1, 1885. He was educated at the Royal College of Music, London. His organ teachers were William Stevenson Hoyte and Warwick Jordon. He studied theory with Frank Bridge and J.F. Shaw. He immigrated to the United States in 1904, and became a citizen in 1912. He served as organist-choirmaster at St. John’s Episcopal Church, Wichita, Kansas, 1906, after which he went to St. John’s Episcopal Cathedral, Quincy, Illinois, 1910. He married Mary Webster in 1908, and received his Mus.Doc. in 1914 from the Grand Conservatory of Music, New York City. For the degree, Diggle composed Fairy Suite for Orchestra on a theme submitted by the faculty. That same year he was appointed organist-choirmaster of St. John’s Episcopal Church, Los Angeles, a position that he held for forty years. He was a prolific composer with more than five hundred works bearing his name. While at St. John’s, Los Angeles, he supervised the purchase and installation of Skinner Organ Co., Opus 446 (1923). In 1926, Skinner enlarged the organ under the guidance of Diggle. Roland Diggle died on January 13, 1954. Honorary pallbearers were Richard Keys Biggs, William Ripley Dorr, William A. Goldsworthy, Edward Gowan, Clarence Mader, and Stanley Williams.


2 Linear Feet


The collection is arranged into the following series. Series 1: Photos. Series 2: Programs. Series 3: Journals. Series 4: Printed material. Series 5: Miscellaneous. Series 6: James R. Page collection. Series 7: Unpublished works. Series 8: Works by others. Series 9: Published works for organ. Series 10: Published works for piano. Series 11: Scrapbook.

Custodial History

The collection of Diggle’s music and papers was donated to the Organ Historical Society Library and Archives by Stephen Bertucci, Diggle’s grandson, on April 21, 2016.
Roland Diggle Collection
Bynum Petty
May 6, 2016

Repository Details

Part of the Organ Historical Society Library and Archives Repository