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Jim Pike papers

 Collection — Multiple Containers
Identifier: MSS 9450

Scope and Contents

Materials document Jim Pike's membership in the popular mid-20th century vocal group, The Lettermen, and his Reunion Lettermen group. Includes letters, photographs, ephemera, framed commemorative records, plaques, certificates and awards, audiovisual materials, and Pike's Lettermen sweater. Included are three compact sound discs and one DVD. Materials in the collection date from approximately 1959 to 2008.


  • approximately 1959-2008


Conditions Governing Access

Condition restricted. Items kept in cold storage; access requires 24 hours advance notice.

Conditions Governing Use

It is the responsibility of the researcher to obtain any necessary copyright clearances. Permission to use material from this collection must be obtained from Reference Services at

Biographical History

Jim Pike was born James R. Pike on November 6, 1936, in Missouri, to country and western singer father Russ Pike, and mother Joy Pike. He grew up in Oklahoma California, and Idaho, graduating from Idaho Falls High School in 1954. His parents later divorced. Jim enlisted in the United States Navy where he performed in the Navy Choir. After his discharge from the Navy in 1955, Jim enrolled in Brigham Young University. At BYU he became a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. As a BYU student he also studied with well-known BYU music and voice teacher, Janie Thompson, performing in the Program Bureau with his friend, Bob Engemann. In 1961, together with Bob Engemann, and fellow singer, Tony Butala, he established the Lettermen vocal group in Los Angeles and became its lead singer. The Lettermen performed their first "hit" song in 1961, "The Way You Look Tonight," and began touring the United States. They were later considered one of the most popular vocal groups of the 1960s, so much so that NASA chose a Lettermen recording for a time capsule on the moon to represent America's popular music. In May 1967, Jim Pike met Trans World Airlines flight attendant, Sue Kennedy, whom he married on August 23, 1968. Jim and Sue had one daughter, Kelly Jeanne Pike, who was born January 10, 1977. In 1973, Jim Pike left The Lettermen, replaced by his youngest brother, Donny. After recovering his voice, Jim established the Lettermen "Reunion" group in 1983, with Bob Engemann and their friend Ric de Azevado. Jim Pike died June 9, 2019, in Prescott, Arizona, at age 82.


2 boxes (1 linear ft.)

3 oversize folders (1.3 linear ft.)

6 oversize boxes (7.8 linear ft.)

1 item (1.5 linear ft.)

1 half box (0.25 linear ft.)

Language of Materials


Custodial History

Donated by Susan Pike in 2020.

Immediate Source of Acquisition

Donated; Susan Pike; 2020.


Utah and the American West and LDS cultural, social, and religious history (20th century Western & Mormon Manuscripts collection development policy, 5.VII, 2007).

Processing Information

Processed; Andy VanDomelon; October 2021.

Register of Jim Pike papers
In Progress
Andy VanDomelen
2021 October 18
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Script of description
Language of description note
Finding aid written in English in Latin script.

Repository Details

Part of the L. Tom Perry Special Collections Repository

1130 HBLL
Brigham Young University
Provo Utah 84602 United States