Arthur Wellesley Hughes

Arthur Wellesley Hughes (1870–1950) was a Canadian musician and composer. Born in Kingston, Ontario, he separated from his family at a young age, spending many years in the United States as an itinerant circus musician. He was a performer on piano, calliope, and alto horn. His circus associations on record include: Mighty Haag Circus, Downie & Wheeler Circus (1912); Hagenbeck-Wallace Circus (1922); Sells-Floto Circus (1923); and Ringling Bros & Barnum & Bailey Combined Shows (1924-26). He was with Robbins Bros. Circus (1928–29) whence his Robbins Bros. Triumphal March arose, and Miller Bros. 101 Ranch Wild West Show, and Walter L. Main Circus (1930–31). Hughes worked as composer and arranger for the Waterloo Music Company of Waterloo, Ontario, from 1932-1935. At other times, Hughes worked as arranger in the Whaley, Royce and Cundy-Bettoney publishing houses. According to his own account, Hughes wrote band music in the USA for much of his life, under various pen names, including Arthur Wellesley and H W Arthur.

In his 70s, Hughes returned to Kansas, which he considered his home. It is reported that he died in an indigent ward in a New York City hospital in 1950.

Birth and Death Data: Born 1870, Died 1950

Date Range of DAHR Recordings: 1916 - 1930

Roles Represented in DAHR: arranger, composer


Company Matrix No. Size First Recording Date Title Primary Performer Description Role Audio
Victor B-17230 10-in. 2/29/1916 United Empire March Victor Military Band Band arranger  
Victor B-17231 10-in. 2/29/1916 In old Quebec march Victor Military Band Band arranger  
Victor BVE-62434 10-in. 5/25/1930 Circus echoes (Galop) Merle Evans ; Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Band Band composer  
Columbia 49576 12-in. 1/20/1919 St. Julien march Columbia Band ; Charles Adams Prince Band composer  
Columbia 49577 12-in. 1/29/1919 Salute to Buffalo march Columbia Band ; Charles Adams Prince Band composer  
Columbia W148116 10-in. 3/21/1929 The tenpenny bit Jelly d' Arányi Violin solo, with piano arranger  


Discography of American Historical Recordings, s.v. "Hughes, Arthur Wellesley," accessed December 7, 2021,

Hughes, Arthur Wellesley. (2021). In Discography of American Historical Recordings. Retrieved December 7, 2021, from

"Hughes, Arthur Wellesley." Discography of American Historical Recordings. UC Santa Barbara Library, 2021. Web. 7 December 2021.

DAHR Persistent Identifier



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