Early American Sheet Music: Its Lure and Its Lore, 1768-1889

By Harry Dichter; Elliott Shapiro | Go to book overview

Yankee Doodle
(In chronological order)

In 1767 THE DISAPPOINTMENT or THE FORCE OF CREDULITY, by Andrew Barton, Esq., "A new comic American opera of two acts," was published in New York. This was probably the first of its kind written in this country. No music included. The libretto contains eighteen songs with the names of the "Airs" to which the words were to be sung. Air IV is YANKEE DOODLE, and the year of issuance proves conclusively that this rollicking melody was actually in existence before the American Revolution. The production of this "American opera" was announced, but it was withdrawn before its premiere.

The earliest known edition in separate song form is "YANKEE DOODLE, or (as now Christened by the Saints of New England) THE LEXINGTON MARCH. NB. The Words to be Sung thro' the Nose, & in the West Country drawl & dialect."First line: "Brother Ephraim sold his Cow and bought him a Commission." Published by [Thomas] Sk [illern] of London who was known to have printed music under his own name between 1777-1778 and 1799. The Boston Public Library dates this as [178-]. See illustration.

YANKY (sic) DOODLE appeared in print, without words, in James Aird's "Selection of Scotch, English, Irish and Foreign Airs," Glasgow, 1782.

We give below the known early American editions of YANKEE DOODLE in sheet music form.

____________________
letter from Stationers' Hall, London, dated November 1st, 1940, advises that Skillern registered works on eight occasions: April 6th, 1782; September 2nd, 1782; August 12th, 1785; October Ilth, 1785; October 29th, 1787; July 23rd, 1789; December 11th, 1789; December 1st, 1791. The copies themselves were not deposited with the registrations, and the titles were not reported to us. However, it is assumed that YANKEE DOODLE was not one of those registered, as a specific search was requested.

-17-

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Early American Sheet Music: Its Lure and Its Lore, 1768-1889
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page iii
  • Foreword vii
  • Contents ix
  • List of Illustrations xii
  • Acknowledgments xiii
  • Overture to Words and Music xv
  • Introduction xvii
  • First Editions xxiii
  • Part I Classified Listing of Early American Sheet Music xxxi
  • Presidents of the United States (1789-1941) 1
  • Music of the American Revolution (hostilities 1775-1783) 7
  • Early Music (1788-1810) 11
  • Early Patriotic and Historical Items (not Connected with Any War) 15
  • Yankee Doodle (in Chronological Order) 17
  • Hail Columbia (president's March) 21
  • Adams and Liberty ("Anacreon" Tune) 23
  • Undeclared War with France (hostilities 1798-1800) 24
  • George Washington 26
  • War with Tripoli (hostilities 1801-1805) 28
  • Early Indian Items 29
  • Early Negro Songs 30
  • War of 1812 (hostilities 1812-1815) 32
  • Star Spangled Banner (foreword) 34
  • Prior Uses of the "Anacreon" Tune 35
  • Star Spangled Banner Editions (the Imprints Are Given Exactly as Printed, in Each Case) 36
  • Songsters Containing Star Spangled Banner 38
  • Home Sweet Home 39
  • Lafayette 42
  • Military Items 45
  • My Country 'tis of Thee (america) 46
  • Early Comic Songs 47
  • Illustrated Negro Minstrel Songs (of the "Jim Crow" Type) 51
  • Non-Illustrated Negro Minstrel Songs 54
  • Ship Items 55
  • New York City Items 58
  • Political Items 60
  • Tobacco Items 63
  • Temperance Items 65
  • Abolition Items 67
  • Skating Items 68
  • Railroad Items 70
  • Columbia, the Gem of the Ocean 72
  • Indian Items 74
  • Dance Items 76
  • Fire Items 78
  • Mexican War (hostilities 1846-1847) 81
  • Jenny Lind Items 83
  • Early California Imprints 84
  • Uncle Tom's Cabin 85
  • Music Stores (the Name of the Publisher Precedes Each Title) 87
  • Stephen C. Foster First Editions 92
  • Stephen C. Foster Confederate Editions (description Condensed) 96
  • Express Company Items 98
  • College Views (the Name of the College Precedes Each Title) 99
  • College Songs 101
  • Later Comic Items 103
  • Telegraph and Cable Item 104
  • Dixie 105
  • Abraham Lincoln 109
  • Maryland My Maryland 113
  • Civil War Items (hostilities 1861-1865) 115
  • Confederate Items 119
  • Money Items 125
  • Stamp Items 128
  • Oil Items 129
  • Croquet Items 130
  • Trapeze and Aerial Items 131
  • Velocipede Items 132
  • Telephone Item 133
  • Harrigan and Hart Items 134
  • Electricity Item 136
  • Typewriter Item 137
  • Portraits on Music 138
  • Famous Songs (description Condensed) 139
  • Songs of Literary Interest (description Condensed) 156
  • Part II Directory of Early American Music Publishers 164
  • Part III Lithographers and Artists Working on American Sheet Music Before 1870 *
  • Bibliography 258
  • Part IV Illustrations 260
  • Index *
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