1800-1876 Sung and with Notes by Peter Janovsky - Smithsonian

1800-1876 Sung and with Notes by Peter Janovsky - Smithsonian

FOLKWA YS RECORDS FSS 37260 INNERS LOSERS CaInpaign Songs froIn the Critical Elections in AInerican History \OluIne 1 -1800-1876 Sung and with Not...

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CaInpaign Songs froIn the Critical Elections in AInerican History \OluIne 1 -1800-1876

Sung and with Notes by Peter Janovsky






BANDS 1-3 THE ELECTION OF 1800: Emergence of the Two Party System Band 1: Overture and Yankee Doodle for Adams Band 2: American Liberty or The Sovereign Right of Thinking Band 3: Jefferson and Liberty BANDS 4-6 THE ELECTION OF 1828: Triumph of Jacksonian Democracy Band 4: Jackson-The Hunters of Kentucky Band 5: J.Q. Adams-Jackson and the Militiamen Band 6: Jackson-Johnny Q. My Jo John BANDS 7-11 THE ELECTION OF 1844: Mandate for Expansionism Band 7: Harrison: Tip and Ty (from the election of 1840) Band 8: Clay Ye True Hearted Whigs of the Union Band 9: Clay: Clay and Frelinghuysen Band 10: Polk Young Hickory Band 11 : Polk Goodbye Harry


BANDS 1-6 THE ELECTION OF 1860: Prelude to Civil War Band 1: Slavery is a Hard Foe to Battle Band 2: Bell Blow Ye Winds in the Morning Band 3: Douglas Old Uncle Abe Band 4: Breckenridge Breckenridge and Lane Band 5: Lincoln The People's Nominee Band 6: Lincoln The People Had Five Candidates BANDS 7-11 THE ELECTION OF 1876: The End of Reconstruction Band 7: Oh I'm a Good Old Rebel Band 8: Tilden Let No Guilty Man Escape Band 9: Tilden Marseillaise for Tilden Band 10: Hayes The Bloody Hand of Treason Band 11: Hayes Our Country Must Be Free © 1978 FOLKWAYS RECORDS AND SERVICE CORP. 43 W. 61st ST., N.Y.C •• U.s.A. 10023




WINNERS®LOSERS Campaign Songs from theeritical Election.c.; i11 An lC ric

\OIume 1 -1800-1876

Sung and with Xo1.cs by Peter JUlO\'sky



FOLKWAYS RECORDS Album No. FH 37260 © 1978 by Folkways Records & Service Corp., 43 W. 61st St., NYC, USA 10023

hi.story of our country, while many of the defeated candidates, such as Henry Clay, Stephen Douglas or William Jennings Bryan, pJ.ayed a role in important events at times equal to tha,t played

The Election of 1800: Emergence of the Two Party System

by Presidents. This collection is a musical study of some of these "turning point"elections. The campaign songs of tre winners and losers


in each election bring out the issues and personalities of e ~. ch


campaign and help us to understand the significance

that particular period.

In this first volume, five elections

have been chosen to represent the major periods of change in r.,ineteenth century American history. The election of 1800 represented the emergence of a ,









. ~



, ...






two party system and the first major change of government



• ,...





from t he hands of one party to another-- the Jeffersonian triurnph over Adams and the Federalists. The election of 1828 symbolized a broadening of democracy in the United States and the recognition of the West as a force in American politics.

Jackson's election ushered in an age of

reform movements and increased participation in elections and Jackson himself served as a model for the strong Presidents


With TILDEN Md HENDRICKS u chief. of our Nation, 11:1 Liberti.. tnt on .. IOlid found.tion; &t RUTHERfORD H,.VES and WHEELER~, Grant'. ·:tt,ird twm- in principl. will I» -«ectad.



~ ST_



,.,t7M~Y:;r~~~~~__~·t. ~~

who followed in later years.


Following the election of James K. Polk, the United States embarked upon policies to carry out the concept of "manifest destiny-"

the belief that the United had a God given right

to extend from coast to coast.


By the end of Polk's term,

the goal was a reality.

Certain elections are generally considered "turning points" in American history.

The election of 1844 served as a mandate for expansionism.

These elections took place at

crucial times in the development of American society.


The four candidate election of 1860 gives us good insight into the degree of division prevailing in the nation on the eve of the Civil War.

The final failure of compromise

issues debated during these elections determined the direction of

was evident as old party loyalties failed and sectional

the country for years following the election.

considerations overrode attempts at national reconciliation.

The Presid "llts

elected were dominant leaders and some of the giants in the

The controversial election of 1876 marked the formal

end to the period of Reconstruction.

Hayes' contested

popular throughout the century. "Rosin the Beau," a western

victory over Tilden signaled the removal of Federal troops

song which was first used as an anthem for William Henry

from the South and the return to power of traditional Southern

Harrison ("Old Tippicanoe") was also used for songs for

leadership, effectively preventing any real gains for the

Henry Clay, Abraham Lincoln, Horace Greeley, Benjamin


Harrison. and the Populist party in the 1890s .

and the "s tar Spangled Banner" remained standbys for campaign

In addition to enlightening the historical events of each


songs throughout the century as did the minstrel tunes and

the songs illustrate the development of folk

and popular music over the nineteenth century.

"Yankee Doodle"

Ci viI \liar songs.

The early

Original songs composed for campaigns were

a rarity until the l ate 19th and early 20th centuries.

campaign songs featured ballads from the British, Scotch, and

These will be treated in Volume II of this collection.

Irish tradi tion as well as the early national :3ongs, such as "Yankee Doodle," ftHail Columbia," and "Anacreon in. Heaven" (which later became "The Star Spangled Banner"). The campaigns of the 1840's began to reflect the influence of the minstrel shows with such tunes as "Old Dan Tucker" by Dan Emmet, which was used for many campaign songs, including


"Clay and Frelinghuysen." (Side I, Band 9) Stephen Foster gained his greatest popularity in the mid 19th c.mtury and many of his tunes were used as campaign songs.


Douglas' "Old Uncle Abe" (Side II, Band 4) is set to

Sea chanties

are also represented in this period by the John Bell version

Wm. P. Adam.

F'. Root and Henry Clay Work were used in many post-war Work's "Marching

KlLITARY BAND, . . S1 .00. ORCHESTRA, • • - 1.00.

'l'l.rough Georgia': provides the tune for Hayes' "The Bloody (Side




The great Civil War songs by composers such as George

Hand of Treason."



of "Blow Ye Winds in the Morning."

c=paign songs for Grant and Hayes.




"My Old Kentucky Home," and Foster's "Nelly Bly" provides the tune for Lincoln's "The People's Nominee."










NATIONAL RUORK. Oampaign Bon, and Obonu, by John Buloe, 40 cents.

Band 10) while "John Brown·'s


Published by WK. A. POln) ... CO.,

E.ody" ("The Battle Hymn of the Rebpulic") is the setting for



And 80 UNION 8QU A JlK

aU__• .~.;;,.4..W._ ~ao::;.a~

"Our country must be Free," also for Hayes. The songs which developed in each period remained 2

~ :. _ . __ Po ..;~C -;





i.Ur •. • ..., I"'rl .. ~ ....~ ..... ,J ,..J•• , •.

'".•. II.......JII """.'_•• I,"· ..

"',j. . I"~.,."'


~.ll"rll ••• ~" .... ~,~ 'N , .....,

I .. , ... ~ ••••• " ••• .t,.,."'.,'.'''~

The Election of 1800. Emergence of the Two Party System

The campaign was quite different from those we know today. It was conducted over the entire year of 1800.


Presidential electors were chosen by differing methods in each


Thomas Jefferson (Va.) Aaron Burr (N.Y.)

73 73



John Adams (Mass.) Charles C. Pinckney (S.C.)


in only four states.


In the majority of states, electors were

chosen by state legislatures.

Therefore, the outcome of the

Presidential election depended on the outcome of the elections fo~

Background of the Candidates


'rhe electors were chosen through direct popular election


Because of the tie in the electoral college, the election was decided for Jefferson in the House of Representatives. ~'ief

At the time,

state legislatures which took place at different times

Lawyer, planter, architect, inventor; author of the Declaration of Independence, Governor of Virginia Minister to France, Secretary of State under Washington.

during the year.

Lawyer; Active in pre-Revolutionary and Revolutionary activities as a member of the Continental Congress; Minister to England following the Revolution, Vice-Pres, under Washington; President, 1797-1801.

aB "Republicans") had differing positions on both domestic and

The Federalists and the Democrat-Republicans (also known

foreign policies.

The Jeffersonian party favored the retention of

states' rights as much as possible.

Vocabulary and Terms,

Party members were opposed

to a larc e standing army and a large national debt.

Alien and Sedition Acts. Set of laws passed during the Adams administration. The Sedition Acts limited anti- government statements and writings. The Alien Acts extended the time necessary to become a citizen and made it easier for aliens to be deported. DEism. Belief in God arrived at through reason only and rejection of divine revelation. Democrat-Republicans. One of the first two American political parties; led by Thomas Jefferson and James Madison. Ft·deralists. Other early political party; led by John Adams and Alexander Hamilton. Neutrality. Foreign policy aimed at avoidine friction with other' nations at war. Key element of Federalist policy, Nullification' Belief that a state has to power to "nullify" or refuse to obey a Federal law, States Rights. Belief that the rights of individual states are equal to or superior to that of the Federal government.


bi tterly condemned Federalist laws such as the Alien and Sedi tion Acts (see "The Right of Thinking," Band 2). and in opposition to these.restrictive laws, strongly advocated freedom of speech and press as defined by the first amendment. The Federalists favored a strong central government and generally had less faith inthe ability of the "common man' to govern himself.

In their 1800 campaign, they cited the

success of their policy of neutrality in aVdding war with either Britain or France as well as the success of Federalist financial policies in providing the nation with a Bound economic base.

Introduction The election of 1800 witnessed the development of

The results of the election show the two Democratic our first

candidates tied in the electoral vote.

The original wording

political parties, the Federalists and the Democrat-Republicans.

of the Constitution provided that the candidate with the greatest

Thomas Jefferson and John Adams had faced each other in the

number of electoral votes be elected President and the

election of 1796 and ' Adams won by only three electoral votes.

candidate with the next highest total, Vice-President.

Between 1796 and 1800, differences between the parties had

caBe , Jefferson and Burr, the two Democratic candidates, tied

intensified and a clear ideological split was evident as the

in the electoral vote.

In this

The House of Representatives chose

Jefferson as President on the 36th ballot. (In 1804, the 12th

campaign began. 3

Gho rus 4. Be s caunch and true on freedom's side. And keep a firm connexion: Let no t t he Democrats divide Your vote s at next election Chorus

amendment to the Constitution was passed. providing for se"lara te elections for President and Vice Pres ident in order to avoid situations such as that which occurred in 1800. SIDE ONE. BAND ONE


The overture to this collection is a medley of tunes from r , the campaign




fea"tured on this album.



The songs

included are "Hail Columbia." "Yankee Doodle." "Rosin the Beau."

No other act of the Federalists was as

"Old Dan Tucker." "My Old Kentucky Home." and "John Browns' Body."

opular as the

AH.en and SedHion Acts. Federalists justified the acts as necessary to limit subversion and prevent the threat of

or "The Battle Hymn of the RepublicO\" The Federal ist song which follows the




foreign influence in American affairs.

The Jeffersonians

in the Gazette of the U.S. and Philadelphia Ad "etiser. a saw the acts as a basic threat to the first amendment rights strongly pro-Federalist newspaper which : had said of Jefferson.

of free speech and press.

"You have been. Sir. a Governor. an Ambassador. and a Secretary of State. and had to desert each of these posts. from that weakness of nerves. want of forti tune and total imbecility of character which have marked yourwhole political caree,. and most probably will attend you to your grave."

The main intent of the acts. they

said. was to limit the power of their party. through silencing dissent. eliminating opposition. and delaying the naturalization of immigrants.

(Most immigrants became Republican voters.)

Democrat-Republican opposition to the Alien and Sedition Federalist campaign efforts sought to convince voters that Actn found expression in the Virginia and Kentucky Resolutions. the election of Jefferson would lead to excesses such as which asserted that states had the right to "nullify" a Federal occurred. in Prance after the French revolution.

Jefferson law, such as the Alien and Sedition Acts. with which they disagreed.

was also accused of atheism and deism.

Opposition to these acts also found expression in songs such as "American Liberty" or

1. Federalists be on your guard. Look sharp to what is doing. Your foes you see are working hard 'ro bring about your ruin.


The Sovereign Right of Thinking,"

in which Republicans proclaim that their "right to think" would eventually triumph over those who sought to limit

Yankee Doodle. keep it up. Yankee Doodle Dandy. Mind the music and the step. And with the girls be handy.

spoken or written words.


The song cites some of the heroes

of the Revolution. such as Washington. John Hancock. ,


John Dickinson (Dickerson in the song) and Thomas Paine

2. There's not a man among you all But what sincerely glories To help-effect the destined fall Of Democrats and Tories.

(author of Common Sense) and states that the Revolution might n~vcr

Ch !£ill!. 3. Then rally strong and you'll defeat. Their schemes of wicked action. And trample down beneath your feet The Je ffer 'sonian faction.

have occurred had these patriots kept silent.


mentioned in the song are "Master Rawle" (U.S. Attorney of Pa.) and "Charley Lee" (U.S. Attorney-General). refers to George III.


"George" in verse 2

1. Since we're forbid to spea~ or write, fI word that mi~ht our betters bite, I'll sit mum-chance from morn till night, But pay it off with thinking, One word they ne' cr sllal fish from me, For Master Rawle or Charley,Lee, Yet, if they'll let rry' thouGhts be free I'll pay them off with thinking.



TUNEI "THE GOBBY-O" Jefferson's election was not finally assured until two weeks before the scheduled inauguration.

2. \vhen George began his tyrant- tricks And ropes about our necks would fix, Ive boldly kickt against the sticks Nur sat mum-chance a thinking. Ive fre ely spoke, and freely thought, find freely told him what we sought, Then freely seiz' d our swords and fought, Nor dream'd or silent thinking.

When it became clear that

Jefferson had won, his supporters called his ele,:tion the "Revolution of 1800."

While historians still debate the

extent to which Jefferson brought fundamental change to the Federal government, the election was truly revolutionary

J. If Hancock and great Washington,

in the sense that political power had changed hands from one

Had nothing said and nothing done, His I'8CI! the Tyrant would have run, Whilst we were mum a thinking. ]{a :] Dickerson not dar'd to write, Had Common-Sense not spit his spite, Our soldiers had not dar'd to fight, But set down mum a thinking.

party to another for the first time in American history. Jubilant Jefferson supporters celebrated his victory by singing "Jefferson and Liberty," a song which characterizes the Federalist regime as a "reign of terror" featuring "gags,

4 . We swore that thoughts and words were free, find so the press should ever be, And that we fought for Liberty, Not Liberty of thinking. But Liberty to write and speak, And ve~geance on our foes to wreak; And not like mice in cheeSe to squeak, Or, sit down mum a thinking.

inquisitors and spies."

The song brings out some of the

important Republican appeals of the election.

For example,

"strangers from a thousand shores" are welcomed- quite a contrast to ihe Federalist Alien acts.

5. Again on Constitution Hill,

The stirring melody and lyrics

to the tune makes one believe that the Republicans truly felt

We swore the sov'reign People's will Should never want a press or quill, Or tongue to speak as thinking. 'I'hat still we're sovereign, who'll deny? For though I dare not speak' yet I On~ soverei~n right will still enjoy, 'rhe sovereign rieht of thinking.

that Jefferson's election was to be the dawning of a new era in a paradise"remoJte from Europe's wants and woes."

1. The gloomy night before us flies, The reign of ~error now is o'erl Its Gags, Inquisitors and Spies, Its herds of harpies are no morel Chorusl

Rejoice! Columbia's Sons, rejoice! To tyrants never bend the knee, But join with heart and soul and voice, For Jefferson and Liberty.

2. Here strangers from a thousand shores, Compelled by tyranny to roam, Shan find amidst abundant stores, A nobler and a happier home. Chorus

J. Here Art shall lift her laurel'd head, Wealth Industry and Peace divine, fuld where dark pathless Forest spread, Rich fields and lofty cities Shine. 5


Property Qualifications. limits on the suffrage which required a certain amount of property in order to vote.

4. From Europe's wants and woes remote. A dreary waste of waves between. He re plenty cheers the humblest Cot •• Anp smiles on every village green.

Sedition bills. Reference to the Alien and Sedition Acts (see the election of 1800).


5. From Georgia up to Lake Chamolain. ~.

From Seas to Mississippi's Shore. e Sorls of Freedom loud proclaim, The keign.2L Terror is no more.

In troduction Historians have viewed Andrew Jackson's election in 1828 as a victory for "The Common Man" and as a symbol of the emergence of the West as a force in American politics.

This view of the

election is due in part to Jackson's personality and Western SIDE ONE. BANDS 4-6


origins. but also to historical factors at the time which were

TRIUMPH OF JACKSONIAN DEMOCRACY Parties lJemocrats (Democrat-Republican) National Republicans

Candidates Andrew Jackson (Tenn,) Martin Van Buren (N.Y.) John Quincy Adams (Mass.) John Sargent (Penn. )

Electoral Vote

working to bring about democratization on a local level throughout


Popular Vote 647.292 (56%)


507.7)0 (44%)

the nation.

The election represented several important developments

in democracy. 1. It was the first election in which most of the Presidential electors were chosen through popular vote.

Previously, in many

states electors were chosen by the state legislature. Brief Background of the Candidates'

2. A larger number of people voted in this election than in

Jackson. Lawyer. planter; led victories against the Creek Indians in 181). the British in the Battle of New Orleans in 1815 and the Seminole in 1819; unsuccessful candidate for President in 1824.

any previous election because by 1828. all but two states had


dropped property qualifications for voting. ). Jackson was the first President to come from a state in the

Secretary to his father John Adams when he was minister to Great Britain; lawyer; minister to the Netherlands, Prussia. Portugal; member of the U.S. Senate; professor at Harvard,minister to Russia, negotiated treaty which ended the War of 1812; Secretary ofState in the Monroe administration; President from 1825-1829.

~Ip.st. o ~

All previous Presidents had come from either Virginia


4. The election represented the re-emergence of the two party :;ystem. Open party conflict did not exist during the

Vocabulary and 'l'erms

"Era of Good Feelings."

Corrupt bargain. Phrase used to refer to the alleged "deal" made between John Quincy Adams and Henry Clay, giving Adams the Presidency in 1824.

(However. the seeds of future

divisions were developing at this time.)

5. Par: ly because of the braadening of the electorate, the

Democrat-Republican (Democratic) Party' Party of Van Buren, Jackson and Calhoun; generally favored greater states' rights, and expressed greater interest in "the common man"

election of 1828 was the first to use extensive campaigning

Era of Good Feelings. Period of little overt party strife during the administration of Monroe (1816-1824).

rallies, parades and other electioneering. especially on the

coordinated through party organization.

National Republican Party. Party of Adams. Clay and later of Harrison; r,enerally favored a strong central government to promote internal improvements and other programs, 6

The election featured

part of Jackson's supporters. who formed "Hickory Clubs" to campaign for their hero.

a national hero, subject to near deification by many of his

John Quincy Adams was the victim of forces which made his years

in office quite possibly the most unhappy: Presidency of any


Chief Executive.

at New Orleans, served as a campaign song both in Jackson'S

His Presidency began under a cloud because

"The Hunters of Kentucky," a history of his exploits

of the "corrupt bargain" he had allegedly made with Henry Clay

1824 and 1828 campaigns.

to gain the Presidency in 1824 (see "Johnny Q., My Jo John, Band 6).

was the British general in command of the forces at New Orleans

Adams position was not helped by his personality.

opposing Jackson.

Though a dedicated

public servant and an idealist, he was cold and aloof. He even

Packenham, mentioned in the second verse,

Two verses of the song are included here.

1. You gentlemen and la~ies fair, who grace this famous city' Just listen if you've time to spare, whilst I rehearse a dittYI And for the opportunity, conceive yourselves quite lucky, For 'tis not often here you see a Hunter of Kentucky.

described himself as "A man of reserved, cold, austere and forbidding manners. My political adversaries say, a gloomy misanthrope, and my personal enemies an unsocial savage. With the knowledge of the actual defects of my character, I have not the pliability to reform it."

Chorus. Ohl Kentucky, the Hunters of Kentuckyl ------ Ohl Kentucky, the Hunters of Kentuckyl 2. I 'Spose you've read it in the prints, how Packenham attempted, To make old Hickory Jackson wince, but soon his sc he mes repented. For we with rifles ready cocked, thought such occasion lucky, }\nd soon around the hero flocked the hunters of Kentucky.


(Adams song)

JACKSON AND THE MILITIAMEN Tune. The Ballad of Major Andre

While Jackson's victories were an inspiration to his ardent supporters, his opponents found evidence in his record that depicted him as a ruthless, wild western cutthroat who thought nothing of needlessly executing innocent militiamen and who would fight a duel at the drop of a hat.

Anti-Jackson forces feared

his election would lead to turmoil, riot and anarchy. In support of this contention, they circulated a leaflet John Quincy Adams

Andrew Jackson

ONE. BAN) FOUH. THE HUNTERS OF KENTUCKY Tune. Unfortunate Miss Bailey


known as "The Coffin Handbill" which showed six coffins representing the six militiamen executed by Jackson during


Contrasted with Adams' reserved image, Jackson's reputation

Creek war. The

the Militiamen" was that Jackson's election might result in

as a duelist, Indian fighter, and hero of the Battle of New Orleans had tremendous appeal,


implication of the handbill and of songs such as "Jackson and

summary executions on the White House lawn.

especially to the newly enfranchised voters.

Defenders of Jackson say that the executions were justified-

This song is a celebration of Jackson's victory in the Battle

that the men were in fact deserters.

of New Orleans- the greatest victory for the U.S. in the War of

might have been responsible for an increased discipline among the

1812, even thoughit was fought after the peace treaty ending

Tennessee militia which enabled the Americans to defeat the

the war had teen signed.

As a result of the battle, Jackson became

In any case, the executions

Creeks and hence remove a powerful British ally. 7

1. Ye honest men of every kind, attend while I relate Of six unhappy citizens the melancholy fate. 'Twas when the sons of liberty were fighting with their foes, Tiley drafted men from Tennessee, the British to oppose.

ONi:; llANO SIX:


JOHNNY Q., MY JO JOHN Tune I John Anderson, My Jo John

2. The farmer left his plow and hoe, the merchant left his trade. To serve three months in camp; for so tre Act of Congress said. They marched them over stones and sand through all the burning day. They marched through water ~d o'er land to far off Florida.



duels and executions (see"Jackson and the Mil itiamen") to

The campaign of 1828 was one of the most vicious of the

'Twas on the twentieth day of June, their three months tour began, And when their ninety days were up, their thoug hts all homeward ran, For Captain Strother he had told the privat ps of the corps, There was no law that them could hold a sinGl e minute more.

adultery and even bigamy.


and atheism to buying a billiards table at taxpayers' expense. This song cataloeues some of the more serious charges against Adams .

~~hey tri ed them for deserters then and mutiny withal. And finding guilty these poor men, their tears began to fall. Then General Jackson issued out an order from his pen, That in four days they should be shot, these six militia men.

Now God And may And God Lest we

The unhappy Adams was the victim

of equally vituperative charges ranging from anti-Catholicism

4. T,ley buckled each his knapsack, and started home to go. B~t soon, alas I They were seized up and put in prison low. Then General Jackson called a court these citizens to try. ~'hree officers of every sort, determined they should die.


Adams forces accused Jackson of everything from murderous

In the first verse, Adams is paried with his father. the

se :ond President . as a champion of the common man.

protect the United States and all militia men. it never be our fate to hear such things again. forbid our President this Jackson e'er shall be, should to his camp be sent. and shot for mutiny.

of Aristocracy. and an enemy

The memory of the hated Alien and Sedit ion

Acts is resurrected and the son is forced to bear the sins of his father. The second verse continues its abuse


f Adams, charging

wi th pro-British sentiments and a preference for Aris tocracy. In addition . Adams is held responsible for spreading the rumor that Thomas Jefferson had an affair with Sall y Hemmings, one of his slaves.

(Recent biographers of Jefferson are still in

disagreement about the existence of this affair.) The third verse contains the key charge against Adams- that he and Henry Clay engineered the famous "corrupt bargain" in the- House of Represe ntatives which gave the election of 1824

to Adams over Jackson.

There were four candidates in the

el ection of 11:.24. and although Jackson received 99 electoral votes. 15 more than Adams, he did not receive a majority in the electoral college and the election was thrown into the House of Representatives. Henry Clay, realizing that he had no chance to win the election. gave his support to Adarns.

Jackson and his supporters were enraged

when Clay was subsequently appointed Secretary of State- a traditional stepping stone to the Presidency.

Jacksonians cried that they had

been robbed of the election and used what was actually legit imate poli.tical maneuvering 8


the fuel for a crusade which haunt ed

Adams throughout his entire Presidency and was in large part

was marked by a growth of humanLtarian movements, increased

responsible for his defeat in 1828.

extension of suffrage and other democratic reforms.

The final verse of the song predicts that Adams will lose


it is inter.esting to note that Jackson himself might have opposed

the election and the "line" of Presidential Adams' which had begun

some of these reforms. such as the movement to abolish slavery.

with his father, would not be continued with John Quincy's son.

Jackson himself was a strong President. freely using his veto power

There is irony in the final verse which predicts that Adams would

and even threatening the use of force to quell louthern oppostion

return to his "county seat," for this is exactly what he did.

to a tariff bill.


his retirement from the Presidency, Adams served

20 years as a representative from Massachussetts in the House and achieved greater prestige and respect in this role than he ev e r had as President.

Adams gained particular notoriety in

his advocacy of the : abolition of slavery. 1. John Quincy John, Jay Joe, John You mind your father's creed, Was that the )'ich should govern, John, But that the poor should bleed; And for to silence all complaint Enacted laws you know-Sedition bills were gaggiOJpillS, John Adams Q., my joe. 2. John Adams' son, my jo, Johnl Ye praised the British then, To build up Aris~Qcracy, Ye plied baith tongue and pen; Ye libell'd Thomas Jefferson. As "dusky Sal" will show vii' wit lascivious and profane. John Adams' son, my Jol

*baith=both KINO .ANDREW THE FmST.


J. O. Johnny Q•• my Jo. John. your honor's deeply stained.

The gem that now hangs on your brow. by bargain was obtainedh bargain made with Clay. John. "as all the world do km'w." And Webster too. was bought by you. O. Johnny Q. my Jo.

4. O. Johnny Q. my Jo John, your race will soon be run. Nor regal Gem nor diadem. descend upon your sonl You, to your county seat. John. reluctant then must go. Where time mispent, you will lament. 0 Johnny Q, my Jo.




James K. Polk (Tenn.) George M. Dallas (Penn.) Henry Clay (Ky.) Theodore Frelinghuysen (N.J.)










Jackson's supporters treated his election as a "revolution" similar to Jefferson's 1800 triumph.

sUPlorters streamed into Washington and nearly turned reception into a brawl.

Brief Background of the Candidates

At his inauguration, his

Polk. Lawyer. served in the Tennessee House of Representatives. anc: the U.S. House of Representatives: Speaker of the U.S. House; Governor of Tennessee

a White House

This outpouring of sentiment certainly

is some indication that Jackson's election was victory for the "common man."


Lawyer: Speaker of the House: Senator. "War Hawk" in War of 1812; architect of Missouri Compromise (1820) and Compromise of 1.850; Secretary of State under Adams; unsuccessful candidate for President in three elections (1824. 18J2 and 1844·)


The period of Jackson' s Presidency 9

The election of Polk was a reversal of the results of Annexationl Addition of new territory to a nation

four years earlier when Whig candidate William Henry Harrison

Locofocosl Name used to refer to Democrats by their opponents. (was the brand name of a safety match which had been used to light a New York Democratic meeting after the lights had been extinguished )

(Tippicanoe) won a landslide victory over Martin Van Buren.

Manifest JestinYI Beli e f that the United States had a "God g iven" rig,t to expand its borders from the Atlantic to the Pacific Oceans



( Wm. Henry Harrison)

Tune I "Little Pigs"

Whigs I Political party which emerge d in the early 18JOs originally as a coaltion of anti-Jackson forces includine National Repuulicans an,j dissatisfied Democrats; g enerally mor e conservative in o rientation than the Democrats

The election of 1840 is not one of the elections studied in this collection.

However. one song from the Harrison-Van

Buren contcst is included because that election was a key one in the de velopment of campaign songs, and set a pattern for campaign songs for the remainder of the 19th century. In 1840. the Whigs launched an unprecendented "singing campaign " on behalf of William Henry Harrison. an aging general who received his nickname "Tippicanoe" because of his victory there over the Indian Tecumseh. in 1811. k though Harrison was a wealthy slaveowner, his campaign

sought to portray him as a


of the people."

An opposition

newspaper had poked fun at Harrison, saying that with a $2,000 pension. he'd be content to sit in a log cabin and drink hard cider the rest of his life .

The Whigs took this charge and used

it to their advantage, glorifying the "log cabfn" and "Hard cider" themes as exampl es of Harrison's homely virtues. Introduction

"Log cabin"

songsters were sold by the thousands. The Harrison songs contrasted the Hero of Tippicanoe

According to the concept of "Manifest Destiny" the U.S. was fated to extend its


with Democratic incumbent Martin Van Buren.

from coast to coast.

Van Buren

wan pictured as an effete Aristocrat with contempt for the common

The fulfillment of this concept was the most important result


of the election of 1844, since the election of James K. Polk

However, he didn't stand a chance in the face of the onslaugh t

assured that an aggressive policy of expansion was carried

of songs, parades and rallies which shouted "Van is a used up man,"


and made Harrison's victory at Tippicanoe as significant as

Between Polk's election in 1844 and his retirement in 1849,

In reality, Van Buren was of humbler origin than Harrison.

the U.S. had annexed Texas. acquired the Oregon territory up to

Rome's victory over Carthage.

the 49th parallel and acquired vast new land». including


California, as a result of the Mexican War,

Van Buren, who had been noted for

skill at political maneuvering, coula not maneuver himself

away from the relentless barrage of propaganda deifying Harricon 10

and castigating "lit·tle Matty" enemy of the poor.

as a dishonest. Aristocratic

deal of National prestige in his own political career. the

"The Ball a rolling on" in the song. refers

Whigs felt that linking him to their departed hero could certainly

to giant balls inscribed with the names of states and campaign slogans. which were


do him no harm.

from town to town during parades and

is seen as carrying


on the banner of 'I'ippicanoe, who has

bc(>n "promoted to join the high army." The song also brings out Whig sentiments toward Tyler. who

1. What·s the cause of this commotion. motion. motion. Our country through. It is the ball a rolling on

"treacherously" stole the v.ictory nobly gained by Tippicanoe. (See verse ))

Chorus. For Tippicanoe and Tyler too Tippicnnoe and Tyler. too. And with them we will beat little Van. Van. Van is a used up man And with them we will beat little Van.

1. Ye true hearted whigs of the army

'rhat conquered for Tippicanoe Come ,;oin with us now the high standard Of Ha rTY the honest and true. Our Harry the honest and true Our Harry the tried and the true Who fought in our ranks as a soldier With us for old Tippicanoe. 2. We have not my friend now to guide us Our former commander ·tis true For death has been here and promoted Our chieftain. brave Tippicanoe Our chieftain brave Tippicanoe Our chieftain. brave Tippicanoe He's left us to join the high army Of those who are faithful and true.

2. Like the rushing of mighty waters.

On it will go I And in its course will clear the way •• Ch~

). Let them talk about hard cider. cider .cider. And Log cabins. too. It will only help to speed the ball ••• Ct,orus

4. Little Matty's days are numbered. numbered. numbered

). The victory once gained so nobly We l() s t and by treachery too 111.:t :;hall ever the soldiers despair boys Who 've fought for old Tippicanoe Who've fought for old Tippicanoe Who've fought for old Tippicanoe Pick your flints and look to your rifles And fire for Harry the true.

Out he must gol And in his place we'll put the good old •••


In this song. "Harry the Honest and True."



Tune. Rosin the Beau William Henry Harrison served the shortest term of office of any President.

The elderly general ;:aught pneumonia at his

inauguration and died one month later.

John Tyler became the

first Vice-Presient to succeed to the Presidency.

However. the

Whigs who nominated "Tyler. too" probably did not seriously consider this possibility.

Tyler opposed the Whigs on almost

every major issue between 1841 and 1844. including the tariff. the creation of the second U.S. Bank. and the annexation of Texas. With Tyler a traitor to the Whig cause. Henry Clay emerged as Tippicanoe's heir.


Clay had gained a great

William Henry Harrison 11

John Tyler


a popular minstrel tune, makes the most of the "risin'CLAY AND FRELINGHUYSEN

Frelinghuysen" rhyme as well as various

Tune. Old Dan Tucker

1. A first rate rhyme was made of late By a Whig from the Buckeye state •. It goes by that familiar tune, Which Old Dan Tucker taught the Coon.

Clay was probably the most popular national figure of the ,time. Using Clay's reputation, the Whigs tried to duplicate

Chorus. Hurrah I Hurrahl The country's risin' l" or Harry Clay and Frelinghuysen. Hurrah! Hurrah I the Country's risin' For Harry Clay and Frelinghuysen.

success by turning out songsters acclaiming

"The Farmer of Ashland" as a national savior.

The introduction

to the Whig Banner Melodist states.

2. The Loco's cause is out of season, For it has neither rhyme or reason. The people tried and found it lacking Their promises had not good backing.

"It may be safely asserted that this history of the world does not furnish an instance of more eminent purity, disinterestedness, zeal, and ability combined in a great statesman than may be found in the life and services of Henry Clay."

'Tis a sight which they grow sick at, For any'th"inp; from Humbug free With Locos systems don't agree

in the first verse was the symbol of the Whigs, similar

is short for "Locofocos" (see vocabulary at beginning of this section), Van Buren had

the favorite to win the Democratic nomination.


Southerners opposed to his anti-expansionist stand w'~re

able to block his nominantion and after several ballots,

James K. Polk was nominated.

Polk was

not seriously

~EW'YORK. . DAILY:TRml1NE~~ . ".........

considered as a candidate before the convention and thus

is cons i dered the first "Oark Horse" candidate. Both Van Buren and


. '" .....ul' ..-~i. -

___ .. ....

.. - ..

~ ".-


: II·EWTIK'~.ml ' . .. I I~,OOO \"O~UTEnS ~~LL~~ FOI! . I

would be the two Presidential candidates, both Van Buren and

__ _


CAa. .aT AT W....m.ClTO. ooa.,UG C!f .'O'.DA7 MOUJ.a.

Clay published letters opposing the annexation of Texas.


When Van Buren failed to get the Democratic nomination, Clay was


$10.000,000 TC!, BE lWBED! .


.&."Uon:t' aad I. . .r .... • ar ....... r" .rWarw".

"manifest destiny" had captured the public's imagination, Clay's oppu s i"tion to




In 1842, expecting that they

faced with a pro-expansionist opponent in Polk.


.- ----.. ,-~,,- --·--:::"stTHE TRIBUNE.

were victims of their position

against the annexation of Texas.


4. '' :heir own true friends they would dishearten And clipt the wings of little Martin 'fo calls of justice they pmved callous, And victimized P90r Polk and Dallas. Chorus 5. The :people say 'tis not surprisin' We go for Clay and Frelinghuysen. The ship of state needs no such ballast As James K. Polk and George M. Dallas. Chorus 6. Our Clay and Frelinghuysen team Will make the Locos kick and scream. We'll drivt! it over all their fallacies, Texas Humbugs, Polk and Dallases. Chorus

to our Republican elephant and Democratic donkey. "Locos"



J. When Locos see them on our ticket

In "Clay and Frelinghuysen," the "Coon" mentioned

"Li ttle Martin" refers to Martin Van Buren.

for .P Jlk' s

running mate D3.l1as (fallacies-Dallases).

In spite of two previous defeats for the presidency, Henry

their 1840


"Texas Humbugs" (see the final ve.rse)

UII,..UlIUTor I'T. IUIU I f rnlh or 1.', I, H~~£u rUIir lltUII"BEJU!!

may have cost him the election.

. ~

/ It' "''' \;~' an~ hnur. PI.I'.lbfl " trl-:II. T.~ lor.

"Clay and Frelinghuysen" to Dan Ernmets "Old Dan Tucker"





the second verse the famous "corrupt bargain" of 1824 A SONG OF THE HICKORY


be ~ween

Tunel 'Tis My Delight

Clay and Adams is resurrected once again (see Johhny Q.

my Jo John, Band 6).

In addition, the song calls Clay

"d i. ctator of the extra session."

While Whigs invoked the name of the late Tippicanoe

The extra session was

onbehalf of Henry Clay, Democrats called thier standard

a s pecial session of Congress called in 1841 during which

bearer the heir to Andrew Jackson or "Young Hickory,"

Cluy, as the dominant Congressional leader/pushed through

successor to "Old Hickory," hero of the Battle of New Orleans.

various parts of the Whig program, including

The aging Jackson himself endorsed the Democratic dark horse

tariff bills.

Bank and

However, these programs were vetoed by Tyler'

The song treats the bank issue in verse three.


Jacksonian tradition, a National Bank is seen as the oppressor

The eXpansionist theme of the Polk campaign is quite evident in the "Song of the Hickory."

In the

of the common man, and Clay's

The Democrats


of the bank shows his

de1.ire to "grind off the nose from the face of the poor."

openly welcome "the Lone Star State" (Texas) and also

Finally, the song accuses Clay of straddling the issues

proclaim their desire to take Oregon from the British. Inclusion of Oregon in the Democratic expansionist aims

and varying his speeches depending on his geographical location.

was an a ttempt to ease Northern fears that the admission

(" Your speeches for North and for South and for West."

of Texas, a slave state, would upset the balance of slave and

Clay's vacillation on the Texas issue in particular g ives

frp.e states.

some validity to this charg e. anti-annexation stand,

1. ,'nd when our soil's invaded and our rights are trampled on


We'll gather' r ound "Young Hickory" from Ma ine to Oregon. And British Whigs and Yankee Whigs alike will rue the day. For while we flo g the British boys, we'll use up Henry Clay

lost him

Chorus I Hurrah! Hurrah! for the Hickory tree and down with Henry Clay! Hurrah! Hurrah! for the Hickory tree and down with Henry Clay!


Seeing the unpopularity of his

tried to modify it as the campaign

However, his late pro-annexation statements

votes to Birney, the candidate of the abolitionist party,

especially in the key state of New York.

2. And now the brave young Hickory, spreads out its branches wide 'l.'hey're bro a d enough to shelter us and Texas by our side. '£hen we~come to . the Lone Star State, come Derr.ocrats make way. Yo ung H~ckory w~ll shelter us, in spite of Henry Clay. Chorus




Tunel Derry Down As in the elections of 1828 and 1840, opposing parties had few qualms about hurling invective at the ir rivals. This Polk song is merciless in its attacks on Clay.

Discussing the Texas Question

In 13

1. Go home Henry Clay, there's no room for you here, So pack and be jo gging and leave the track clear. We've Polk and Dallas, _ both men to our mind, For whom we will- vote and prosperity find. Goodbye Harry, Go Home Harry I Your cornfield at Ashland is waiting for you.



Electoral Votes

2. Your bargain with Adams we've not forgot And all your bold cheering will now eo to pot. Dictator you was of the famed extra session , But of the White House your will ne' er get- -possession _Goodbye Harl'Y, -Go Home Harry I Your slaves at the .farm- are waiting for you




Abraham Lincoln (Ill.) Hannibal Hamlin (Me.)

Democrats (Northern)


). A Bank is your hobby, a bank you shall hav e ; A bank of good earth when you go to your g rave. But never a bank of fifty millions power, To g rind off the nose from the face of the poor Goodbye Harry, Go home Harry I At Ashland there's sackcloth and ashes for you.

Popular Votes



A. Douglas (Ill.) H.V. Johnson (Georgia)



Democrats (Sout hern)

John C. Breckenridge (Ky) Joseph Lane (Oregon)



Const iutional Union

John Bell (Tenn.) Edward Everett (Mass.)


4. Your triple faceknavery all should detest. Your speeches for North and fo~ South and for West So driven in practice and principles too. That an honest mouth they could never pass through. Goodbye Harry, go home Harry I A three headed President never will do.


Bri ef Background ...2.f. the Candidates Lincoln. Lawyer: fought in the 18)2 ~eminole wars: as representative in Congress opposed the Mexican War: active in the formation of the Republican party; unsuccessful candidate for the Senate from Illinois in 1858. but gained national prominence during the Lincoln-Douglas debates.

***** The election was extremely close. Clay lost by only 8,)00 popular votes and a difference of a few votes in several

Douglas. Lawyer: Illinois Attorney Generall also Secretary and Supreme Court Justice in Illinois. U.S. Representative and Senator from Illinois

states wouldLhave hltered the results.

E-reckenridge .

However, Polk was elected

and departing President Tyler took his election as

a mandate to

Bell :

press for the annexation of Texas which took place just before he left office.

Vice President under Buchanan; supported compromise of 1850

Congressman; Secretary of Warl Senator: associated with the Know-Nothing Party.

Vocabulary and 'rerms

The f act that the people of the U.S. had opted for


Abolitionistsl Those who advocated the immediate end to slavery

was crucial for the further development of the country. Doughf~cesl

The nation would now have to face the problem of the spread of slavery to these new territories.


Northerners sympathetic to the South and slavery

Fireeaters. Radical southerners who favored secesssion and rejected any compromise with the North

It was a challenge

Freesoil partyl Group opposed to the spread of slavery to the western ter:r-i tories

which compromi.se failed to solve and was only f:'inally resolved through the tra gedy of Civil War.

Know-Nothings. Third party formed in the 1850s bc>ed largely around anti-immigrant and anci-Catholic sentiment.

Introduction The election of 1860 was one of the most crucial and complex in our nation's history.

The fact that four candidates

ran is some indication of the degree of division which would lead 14

to secession and Civil War almost immediately following the election. For the first part of the nineteenth century·. several compromises had postponed direct confrontation over the issue of slavery. Clay.

In 1820. the Missouri Compromise. eng ine ered by He nry

establi :sh ~ d a line (J6°30' latitude) which would serve

as the dividing line for the Louisiana Territory.


in future states formed from

Slavery was to be prohibited in any

future state north of this line. This line served to help maintain a balance between s lave and free , states until new lands were gained throug h the annexation of Texas and war with Mexico.

Another compromise

in 1350 tried to solve the problem of the extension of slavery to t1e areas gained from Mexico.

The Compromise specified that

in the territories gained from Mexico. the people of the terJ~i tory

would be able to choose for or ag ains t slavery.

'f his doctrine was known as popular or squatter sovereignty. Abrohom Lincoln

Stephen A. Douglos

The 1850·s. however. saw the end of the period of compromise. In all the debates on slavery. the arguments centered around one

These developemnts led to the creation of a strong

issue- whether Congress had the power to re gulate slavery

Bentiment ag ainst the spread of

in the territories.

between the freesoilers and abolitionists (see vocabulary)

Behind this issue was the basic ' question

of whether Congress had power to regu·l ate slavery at all.

The Repu blican party gathered under its banner all those

Two events of the 1850's disheartened those who wanted to check the spread of slavery. was passed.

slavery and a coalition

wi t ~ \ a common interest ag ainst the extension of slavery. In

In 1854. the Kansas-Ne braska Bill

This bill,sponsored by Senator Stephen Douglas


John C. Fremont

made a strong showing . but was defe ated

by Buchanan.

of Illinois applied the doctrine of popular sovereignty to the Kansas and Nebraska territories- part of the Louisiana Territory.


In effect. the act contradicted the Missouri Compromise. since slavery was supposed to be prohibited in those territories under the Missouri Compromise.

SLAVERY IS A HARD FOE TO BATTLE by Judson Hutchinson Tunel Jordan is a Hard Road to Travel

The Hutchinsons were a popular sing ing family of the mid-19th

The Kansas-Nebraska Act led to

century who preached the causes of abolitionism and temperence

a bloody struggle between pra- and anti-slavery forces in Kans as.

through their songs.

Later. in 1857. the Dred Scott decision stated categorically

"Get Off the Track" was a powerful appeal for the abolition of

that the Missouri Compromise was unconstitutional and that

slavery. comparing emancipation to the powerful imag e of a new ag e-

Congress had no power to regulate slavery under the Constitution.

the railroad. 15

Their version of "Old Dan Tucker," called

5. But the day is drawing nigh that Slavery must die,

"Slavery is a Hard Foe to Battle" was another Hutchinson

A!ld everyone mus t do his part accord in'. Then let us all unite to give every man his right. Ald we'll get our pay the other side of Jordan. Then wake up the North. the sword unsheath, Freedom is the best road to travel I believe. (repeat)

song. published in their 1860 songster for the Republican campaign. The tune is "Jordan is a Hard Road to Travel." a popular minstrel tun'~

by Dan Emmet. composer of "Dixie."

The song is included

as an expression of Northern anti-slavery sentiment.


most Northerners did not yet fa'ior abolition. mo.st saw its spread to the West as a serious threat to the existence of free labor there.

This view is reflected in the last verse

of the song which stresses "we'll get our pay the other side of Jordan."

It is interesting to note that though the song

uses militant imagery ("the sword unsheath") the emphasis of the song is on political action.

For example, slavery is

hit" a few knocks with a free ballot box," and the legislature is urged to free the siaves.

The authors of the Gong, and most

Northerners, still hoped to prevail over slavery in a political fight.

However, the depth of sectional divisions and th( political


of the 1860 election made it clear by 1861 that

tradi tiona! political solutions would not suffice for


Police ejecting

solution of this issue. 1. I looked to the South and I looked to the West, And I saw old slavery a coming. With four Northern doughfaces hitched up in front, Driving freedom to the other side of Jordan. Then take off your coats and roll up your sleeves. Slavery is a hard foe to battle I believe. (repeat'last two lines)


group of abolitionists and Negroes from Tremont Temple in Boston in 1860.



BELL SONG Tune. Blow Ye Winds in the Morning

1860 approached the prospects for compromise on the slavery

issue looked dim. 2. Slavery and freedom they both had a fight 1 And the whole North came up behaind 'em. Hit slavery a few knocks with a free ballot box Sent it staggering to the other side of Jordan Then rouse up the North, the sword unsheath, Slavery is a hard foe to battle I believe. (repeat)

Republicans, led by spokesmen such as

Abraham Lincoln of Illinois and William Seward of New York, were united in their oppostion to further expansion of slavery. Democrats

). If I was the Legislature of these United States. I'd settle this great question accordin'; I'd let every slave go free over land and on the sea, And let them have a little hope this side of Jrodan. The~rouse up the free, the sword unsheath, Freedom is the best road to travel I believe. (repeat)

were so divided over the slavE!ry issue that they could

not agree on one candidate and split into a Northern and Southern wing. Southerners vowed to secede in the event of the election of an anti-slavery President. In this atmosphere of sectional strife, a new party. the

4. The South have their school where the masters learn to rule. And they lord it o'er the free states accordin'; But sure they better quite. e'er they raise the·Yankee grit, And we tumble 'em over 'tother side of Jordan. Then wake up the North, the sword unsheath. Slavery is a hard foe to battle I believe. (repeat)

Cons titutional Union Barty, proclaimed itself the only force which could avert disaster.

The party nominated John Bell,

a moderate Senator from Tennessee who had supported the previous 16


Breckenridge of Tennesse for President.

Bell's closest rival for the nominantion was

Sam Houston, former President of the Republic of Texas.

Breckenridge was

Buchanan's Vice-President and had in the early 1850's supported

T,h e

Constitutional Union Party platform did not deal with specific

popular sovere·lgnty.

issues and stated simplYI

of the Southern wing of the Democratic party, committ ed to the princ~ple

"Resolved, ·that it is both the part of patriotism and of duty to reco gnize no political principal other than the CONSITUTION OF THE COUNTRY, THE UNION OF THE STATES AND THE ENFORCEMENT OF THE LAWS. ~~ he

However. he now found himself at the head

that slavery was protected under the Constitution

and that Congress had no power to regulate it. ~

membership of the Consi tutional Union Party was drawn

The lines

O'er Buena Vista's blood stained soil" refers to the Battle of Duena Vista of the Mexican war.

primarily from conservative former Whigs and members of Fillmore'!'! "Know-Nothing" party of the 1856 campaign.

1. Come rally round the nation's flag and catc~ the nation's song. Ring forth our party's battle cry. in chorus loud and long . F'Jr Breckenridg e and Lane. my boys, o'er valJL, hill, and plain. The cry now echoes through the land. for Breckclnridg e and Lane.

1. Come all ye Union men give ear, That's scattered o'er the land, I'm going to build a Union ship, To sail upon dry land.

2. O'er Buena Vista's blood staine d soil, o'er Mexico's domain, Fame spreads her scroll there high inscribed stand Breckenridge and Lane. Brave Breckenridge and Lane. my boys. who led mid shot and shell, And gallantly won victory, once more will lead us well.

Chorus I Sing blow ye winds in the morning, Blow ye winds hi-o, Three cheers for our gallant Bell. Blow. Blow. Blow.

J . We fi ght, 'tis true. a might host. a host of every hue.

2. My crew shall all be Bell men. I'll hire no other men. They're able to stand before the mast. And I can trust in them.

But truth an~ right will nerve us on, and bear us bravely through. For Breckenr1dg e and Lane, my boys, in forum and in field, Hive met and vanquished better foes, to these they'll neve r yield.


J. My mast was brought from Tennessee


From General Jackson's farm. It's able to sail the ship for me. Ar.d stand the hardest storm.

(Douglas Song )

Tune I My Old Kentucky Home After the walkout by the Southerners, the remaining Democrats nominated Stephen Douglas, the well' known Senator from Illinois. Douglas v ie", ~ d his "popular sovereignty" doctrine as the only



way out of the slavery deadlock.

to the territories and that left to the will of the settlers there

The Democrats held two conventions in 1860 and still c.oul C" not unite behind a candidate.

it would die of its own accord.

Southerner delegates


to bloodshed in Kansas.

enough in its protection of slavery.

'I'his ureakup of the Democrat party was the g oal o"f the \\fire-eaters

I n 1858 , Lincoln and Douglas had articulated their differences


on this issue in

who felt that secession was the only solution to the slavery


famous debates.

In 1860, the two did

not meet face to face, but Douglas carried out a tireless

question. The

However, his Kansas-Nebraska

bill failed miserably as a test. of popular soveignty. leading

walked out of the conventions because they felt that the platform was not

He felt that slavery was unsuited

~ outherne rs

campaign in all parts of the country.

who walked out of the second Democratic

Douglas' campaigning

on his own behalf was unheard of in political campaigns of that time.

Convention met in Baltimore in June, 1860 and nominated John 17

Vouglas was a victim of the fact that in a sectionally oriented



election, he had no real sectional base. While he had the

'l.'r.e unity of the Republic an::; at their convention in Chicago

votes, illustrating that his support was great in the nation as

was in marked contrast to the disarray of the Democrats.

a whole, but not strong eQbugh in anyone area to win him more than

Although there were several aspirants for the nomination.

This Douglas song shows that his supporters did not

they all shared the same general views and found it easy to

hesitate to use low politics in their attacks on Lincoln.

close ranks behind Lincoln.

It also indicates that they considered Lincoln to be their main opp~sition


NOMINEE (Lincoln)

Tune. Nelly Bly (Stephen Foster)

second highest total of popular votes, he received only 12 electoral

two states.


Th.is song gives us a brief history of the troub}es of the 1850's

in the campaign.

rhe second verse mentions a compromise (the Missouri Compromise)

sun shines bright on the Do I.\!!; I as cause today, And brighter tomorrow will be. Old Abe Lincoln's hopes are passing all away, But sadder times yet he will see. 1'he Republ ican crow.lare exul tant no more, lluchanm has given up the fight. Even Brecknrid~e ~tops his knocking at the door. While Douglas keeps ahead all right, ~" he

as a "check to slavery's wrongs," and says that Douglas crushed the compromise (through the Kansas Nebraska Acts) for his own interests.

The line "Pierce succumbed to the South's

request," probably refers to Pierce's acceptance of the pro-slavery government organized in Kansas.

Chorus. \\'eep no more Abe Lincoln, Ere weeks shal pass away, You shall be forgot, as you were unknown before, Except in Illinois far away,

The thirJ ':erse is a description of the Democratic convention, ~rhe"(;ffice

2. You need hunt no more for the game is safely stowed And Douglas the victor is found. Ypu'd much better, go home, for you only will get snowed, If the boys find you lying around. Keep to splitting rails, or any other fun, That suits your Republican crew. For a Presidential race has never yet been we-n, By such looking chap as you

rats" refers to Buchanan administration officeholders

who lIere present at the convention.

The fire-eaters were the

no C"ompl7omise southerners whose goal was the breakup of the Demccratic party and secession to "sever state from state." "Covode" refers to the Covode Committee. an investigative committee rormed in the 1850s to investigate Congressional corruption.

.Qll°.I uS

In the final part of the verse. Douglas is given at least some credi t for not bowing to the extremiGt pro-slavery elements at the Convention.


clear that the song was written

hefore the final breakup of the Democrats. since it refers to "our united foc." The final verse mentions some of the candidates put in nomination in Chicago. including William Seward. Senator from New York; Salmon P. Chase. Governor of Ohio; Justice John McClean of Ohio, and Edward Bates of Missouri.


was the favorite. for the nomination and led on the first ballot. However. Lincoln. perceived as more moderate than Seward. nominated on the third ballot.

Mocking Stephen A. Douglos 18



IFmCOLN ................. ___ 011_




The Republican campaign of 1860 was marked by torchlight parades, enthusiastic crowds and tributes to Lincoln- a "log cabin" and"rail splitting" man of the people in the tradition of Tippicanoe.

The Republican campaign even published a newspaper

calle:! "The Railspli tter."

.. ,.,BOLDLY ....... FORA -.,_...........

'rhe second Lincoln song is from the "Wide Awake Songster."


The "Wide Awakes" were pro-Lincoln clubs who led Lincoln parades in snake-dances in the streets wearing capes and helmets and waving fence rails and log cabins.

This song is of interest

beGause it mentions five candidates including the four who eventually ran plus Sam Houston, who lost the Consi tutional Union nomination to John Bell.

The song even mentions



cIDldidates Lane, Hamlin and Johnson. 1. Republicans with; peerless might, Proudly lead the van. Strike for freedom I Strike for right, Old Abe's an honest ' man. He a noble President, The ship of state shat guide. While o'er a nations S~nators, Hamlin shall preside. Hil Lincoln. He>! Lincoln. fin hO;lest man i'or me. I'll sin~ for you , I'll s hout for you, The People's Nominee. (repeat chorus each time)

song 's prophecy "Lincoln He beat them through" came to


J. Democrats or office rats,

Met to nominate. Fire eaters came aflam~ To sever state from state. Their slave code and 'covode ,'/ Caused the softs to quake. The little g ian~ now defiant, No slave code would take.

Ohl Alas, Beef is scarce. To the North they go . See once more at Baltimore Our united foe.




Lincoln was elected and his accession to the

Presidency led to the immediate secession of South Carolina followed by the other states which formed the Confederacy.

A few

months later the nation was plunged into the disaster of Civil War. 1. The people had five candidates, whom they put upon the course. They also had five five ditto, some riding the wooly horse. Chorusl

2 . OnGe we had a compromise, 4. But the people met en masse, A check to slavery's wrong . In the boundless West. Douglas crlJshed the go ld prize, Of Freedom 's sons a noble class To ,Ielp himself along. Some l oved Seward bestl Tnen .;he North and then the We.st, Chase Mc' lean, and Bates I ween, Arose with giant power . Are worthy such a call. Pierce succumbed to the South's request, "Old Honest Abe's"the people's Bu t Douglas had to cower. choice. And we'll roll on the ball. Hil Douglas. Ho I Douglas. Hil Lincoln. Hol ' Lincoln! A Senator would be . ** President shall be. So he tried tre squatter dodge One and all, roll on the ball And went for Kansas free. For the people's nominee.

There was Bell and Breck and Dug and Sam and Lincoln the just and true. Poor Bell, poor Breck, poor Dug the giant and Sam of Texas, too. Now Bell push ed Douglas, and Breck kicke d Houston and Lnr.~ slnashed Johnson and Dug poked Hamlin, But Lincoln he beat them through. Now was this not a medley crew as ever a mortal knew. Now was this not a' 'medley crew, as ever a mortal knew.

2. ThE!Se racers had an itching palm to handle the nation's cash. With Uncle Sam to foot the bills, they'd like to cut a dash. Chc'rus

J. But Lincoln led and ran them blind, passed Breck and Dug and Bell,

* As Vice President , Hrunlin would preside over the Senate.

And even Sam was out of sight, Abe ran so mightrwell.

** A reference to Douglas' proposal for squatter sovereignty or popular sovereignty.

Chorus 19



THE ELECTION OF 1876. The End of Reconstruction Electoral Vote

The election of 1876 was one of the closest and most .- " Popular ';,_, te




Rutherford B. Hayes William A. Wheeler




Samuel J. Tilden Thomas A. Hendricks



controversial elections in American history.

Its outcome was not

finally known until just a few days before the scheduled inauguration. only because

The election has been chosen in this study not 0

f the

controversy ~
outcome, but also because

it marked the end of the period of post-Civil War Reconstruction. Background of the Candidates Hayes. Lawyer; general in the Civil War, Governor of Ohio Tilden. Lawyer ; member of the New York State Legis laturel active in the prosel.C tion of Boss Tweed; Governor of New York State.

The circumstances of the end to this period were crucial to the

Vocabulary and Terms

feeli~g s

Ante-bellum. referring to the period before the Civil War

stationed in southern states and many southerners deeply

"The Bloody Shirt." Campaign tactic of post-war Republican candidates which implied that Democratic victory would mean a betrayl of the Northern Civil War victory.

resented the "carpetbag" governments and attempts at extending


development of the South and the rest of the nation in the late 19th century. Although the Civil War had been over for ten years, bitter remained on both sides in 1876. Union troops were still

rights to the freed blacks. l<~gely

Carpetbaggers. Name given to Northerners who took positions of power in southern states during Reconstruction

The reconstruction period had been

a struggle between Northern carpetbaggers allied

wi th fympathetic white southerners and freedmen and southern

Scalawlgs. Southerners who cooperated with the carpetbaggers

"redeemers" who wished to return the southe= governments to the

Wh isk ey Thief. reference to the Whiskey Ring scandals of the Grant administration.

hands of the ante-bellum leadership. S IDE <·.TWO • BAND 7

OH, I'M A GOOD OLD REBEL Tune. Joe Bowers

This song is included as an


to this section

because although an exaggeration, it gives us an idea of the dep th of feeling still prevalent in the South following the war. "Old Marse Ro bert" is Robert E. Lee.

The "pardon"in the song

refers to the pardons given to ex-Confederates unler the Reconstruction plan in which they could return to public life it they took an oath of allegiance to the union.


the time of the election of



former Confederates had, in fapt, returned to their seats in Congress. 1. Oh I'm a good old rebel, now that's just what I am. For this "fair land of freedom" I do not give a damn. I'w- glad I fit against it, I only wish we'd won. Anu I don't want no pardon for anything I've done.

Left: Sen. Thomas W. Ferry, presidi ng afficer of the joint sessions of Congress, declaring the election of Rutherford B. Hayes as President of the United States, March 2, 1877. 20

2. I followed old ~~~se Robert for four years near about. Got wounded in three places near starved at Point Lookout. I caught the "roomatism" a camping in the snow, But I killed a chance of Yankees and I'd like to kill some mo',



But I ain't gonna love"em now that's for certain sure. And I don't want no pardon, for what I was and am I won'·t be reconstructed, and I don't give a damn.

af t er a third term (until FDR, no President served more than two terms). Grctnt also is shown as shrugging off the Whiskey Ring scandal

LET NO GUILTY MAN GO FREE Centennial Democratic Campaign Song by "Bab Notguil ty" Tunes I Hail I Columbia. Yankee Doodle The Star Spangled Banner


Its author was listed as the infamous "Bab Notguil ty."

The song speaks through Grant, at first, and depicts him as lusting


T\~O I .

("Though I really can't conceive/What they mean by Whiskey thief"). HJwever, the song continues, Grant will accept a "pliant tool" if he himself cannot rule.

The "tool" revealed in the second verse

is "bloody shirt Ohio Hayes."

However, in the event of emergency,

say the Democrats, Ulysses will be foreed to appoint himself "Gr a nt

One of the main cm rgesl against the . carpetbag governments and

the First."

one of the main justifications for their replacement by "redeemed" goverr:"'~nts


"Le " No Guilty Man Escape" is an unsparing attack on Grant and

J. I can't take up my musket and fight 'em now no more.

::; IDE

Democratic campaign theme was "Tilden and

was that they were riddled with political corruption.

This yras undoubtedly the case in many southern post war governments. However, in the 1870's corruption was the rule, rather than the exception,



in all areas of the country. In New York, the Twee~ Ring stole millions of dollars from taxpayers.

Both the 'filden and Hayes campaignes featured jokes as well

However, on the highest level of

government, the Grant administration was the most corrupt in

as sone;s in their campaign materials.

AmE!rican history up until that time.

Song and Joke Books,"

scandal after scandal.

Grant·s terms were marked by

The Democrats brag of an occasional man "coming out" for Tilden. They have been "coming out"of State Prison on Governor Tilden's pardons. (In the campaign, I~e p ubl icans charged that Tilden had been an ally of Boss Tweed, eveh though he actually was responsible for s ending him to jail)

of War, William E. Belknap, was impeached; and his Ambassador to Britain resigned under pressure after being censured by a House commi ttee.

From t he Tilden coll e ction.

While Grant was a great general, he is generally considered to b '~en

one of our worst Presidents.

A comnent on Hayes military record.

Though he was not guilty of

"\~hat no ammunition?" cried the General (Hayes) on a field day. "No more," repl ied the men. "Then cease firin r; ," replied the 0 fficer. "

complicity in the Gcandals surrounding him, he was either oblivious to the evil deeds of his closest advisors or chose to ignore them.

Anoth e r Tilden jest quoted a dialogue between an "eminent Republican and h i.S wife. "Oh wifey, I'm appointed treasurer for campaic n funds for our party. 'f h e wife replied, "Oh, how fortunate I Now I can have that new silk dress and we can take all the children to the Centennial."

In 1.876, the Democrats saw a golden opportunity to exploit the rampant depravity of the Grant administration and elect . their first Pres i dent since before the Civil War.

Samples from these collections follow.

From the Ha yes collection.

His private secretary, Orville E, Babcock,

Vias indicted for his part in the Whiskey Ring scandal; his Secretary


Both publ ished "Campaign

They nominated

Be tween the jokes , the 'l'ilden publ ication incl uded song s such

Srunuel J. Tilden, the Qovernor of New York, who had gained

as the following ve rsion of "The Marseillaise," stressing the

a reputation as a reformer through his prosecution of Boss Tweed.

Tilden campaign theme of reform. 21

Opposing all of this venality and ambition is "Tilden




the Reformer," who enters ' the song at the close of each verse to

Tune, Marching Through Georgia

the triumphant tune of "'fhe Star Spangled Banner." Republican 1. "Let no guil ty man escape" Till the third term is in shape. So that people may believe, Me rcy finds no Whiskey Thief. And if I can't in person rule, Luck will provide a pliant tool.

campai ~ n

songwriters profitted greatly from the

s ongwriting boom(of the Civil War.

During the War, writers such

a s Geo rg e F. Root a nd Henry Clay Work turned out marching songs and ballads which became instant national hits.

These included

"The Battle Cry of Freedom," "Just Before the Battle Mother,"

Now prosecute and execute, Discret i onal I may commute, 'I"he higher law is now in vogue, And people loyal bear the yoke.

"Tr amp , Tramp, Tramp," "The Vacant Chair," and "Marching Through Georg ia."

Some of thes e songs were popular in both the North and

the South and in some cases Norhtern a,J....Southern versions were wei tten

With TILDEN inscribed, triumphantly wave, Tile Star Spangled Banner, o'er the home of the brave.

fo .." th e same tune.

2. "Let no guilty man escape! Till the third term is in shape, Though I really can·t conceive, What they mean by whi s key thief, The Tool is found, let all give praise, In bloody shirt Ohio Hayes.


in 1876, the Hayes campai gn seems

to have monopolized the use of these Civil War standards. "Th e Blo ody Hand of Treason"is an excellent example of a "bloody s hirt'.' rallying song .

The song beg ins by evoking memories

of the beg inning of the war at Fort Sumter.

The song then goes further

A Presid ency of eight years Gives confiddnce devoid of fears I '- Bad gets worse and worse gets worse, I 11 be on hand as Gra nt the First.

cries out against the former rebels now occupying seats in Congress

Sing Hallelujahs ! The country is safe. Cur Tilden is the choice of the free and the brave.

and vows to "rout the ex-Confederates."

and links Tilden with those who thought the war a failure.

In historical pers pective, the song is For tru.t h and justice is our battle, For honor and for honesty. We are no herds of voting cattle, But faithful children 6f the free. But fa i thful children of the free! Too long hav e we been robb e d and plundered, By rascals who divide and steal, But now our veng eance they shall feel, And North and South no more be sundered.

The song

heavy with irony.

I\.s a result of the election of 1876, all remaining troops were removed from the South and the Northenn role in reconstructing the South was ended.

The song 's chorus loudly proclaims "The Black

Man wears no chains."

In fact, it was after the election of

11!76 that s outhern governments, free from Northern

Join Hands! Join hands as one! Ye children of the free! Reform! Reform! Our battle cryFor Tilden's victoryl


passed "Jim Crow" laws segregating and restricting the freedmen's rig hts so completely that it was not until the 1960's that the promise of equal ri ghts for the blacks of the U.S. began to be fully realized. 1. Republic;J.l1s remember: how in The fi ght for human liberty And rebev, thought the Union 'Nhen stricken by the bloody

1861 at Sumter was beg un, then its race ,of life had run, hand of treason.

Hurrah! Hurrah! The Union still remains. Hurrah! Hurrah! The Black Man wears no chains. The will of loyal millions now the government sustains Ag ainst the foul and bloody hand of treason. 22

2. The war is all a failure. slippery Tilden loudly cried. But the valor of our soldiers gave the answer that he lied. When Hayes and all the boys in blue were fighting side by side. Against the foul and bloody hand of treason.



Chorus I Hurra h, Hurra h for Hayes and Wheelerl Hurrah. Hurra h for Hayes and Wheelerl Hurrah. Hurrah for Hayes and Wheeler! Our Country Must be Free I

J. We can and will forg ive the wrone where rebels do repent. When they will act like honest men and show a pure intent. But Uncle Sam their necks will break when they will not be bent. But show the foul ·' and bloody hand of treason.

2. Let lovers of true liberty throughout the land unite. And now as we have done before we'll put our foes to flight. With the ballot. not the bullet, we will battle for the right. Our Country must be rree. '

Chorus 4. We see the men who drew the sword against their native land. In Congress as a unit. still the foes of freedom stand. To rout these '~x-Confederates. honest Hayes mu~ t take command. And paralyze thE! bloody hand of treason. '



J. ~!hat was won upon the battle field we will not now let go. Our liberties we must defend against the common foe. Who would our institutions in a moment overthrow. Our Country must be free.

OUR COUNTRY MUST BE FREE 4. OUr enemies are forming l i ne with Tilden in command. But home and fo re i gn r e bels ~annot rule this e lorious land. This fact in nex t November all the world shall unders·taild. Our country must be rree.

Tune. John Brown's Body

When the

resul is of the election of 1876 were first tallied.

Tilden had 184 electoral votes. one short of the number necessary ror victory.

Hayes had 165 electoral votes.

However. 20 electl7ral

votes. mostly from southern states. were in dispute.

After a period

or debate. crisis. and compromise. all twenty of the disputed votes were awarded to Hayes. giving him the election. to gain Southern


Once more ye true Republicans. Columbia calls for you. Who in the hour of danger to the starry flag were true. Tu~n out as her defender all ye gallant Boys in Blue, Our country must be free.

In order

of this settlement. Hayes agreed to the

removal of Federal troops from the South. Thus. the man who used the "bloody shirt" as a primary t,;ampai gn theme. in a sense "buried" the bloody shirt himself tho ught his remQval of troops from the South. The final song in this first volume is another example of the musical exploitation of th e bloody shirt theme in the Hayes campaign.

Once ae ain.

howeve::-. it is with irony. that we listen to the words "Our country must be fre e ." in light of two factors. The disenfranchisement and se e;regation of the southern blacks which followed the end of reconstr uction and the dubious process through which Hayes was f inally awarded the election. in spite of Tilden's JOO.OOO


pO;lUlar votes. 23


Sources of the Songs Yankee Doodle for Adams * American Liberty or The Sovereign Right of Thinking ., Jefferson and Liberty The Hunters of Kentucky Jackson and the Militiamen Johnny



Jo John *

rip and Ty Ye Tru,", Hearted vlhig3 of the Union Clay and Frt:linghuysen Young Hickol'y Goodbye Harry I Slavery is a liard Foe to Battle Bell Song (Blow Ye v!inds) Breckenridg(' and Lane Ul,\ Unr Ie Abe The People had Five Candidates I'm a Good Old Rebel Let No Guil ty Man Escape Marseillaise for Tilden Thl! Bloody lIand of 'freason OUI' Country Must Be Free

Gazette of the U.S. and Philadelphia Daily Advertiser,~ 28, 1800 Newark Centinel of Freedom, August 14, 1796 The Aurora January 24, 1801 Broadside, published in Boston; in Carl Sandburg, The American Songbag Joseph M. Clary, Our Nation's History in Song.(1896) Philadephia Mercury, August 23, 1828 Richmond Enquirer, Sept. 30, 1828 by Alexander Coffman Ross, in various collections Whig Banner Melodist (1844)


New York Public Library, Lincoln Center Library Of Congress, Music Division New York Historical Society New York. Historical Soceity

Hutchinson's Republican Songster (1860) The Wide Awake Vocalist or --"A"al1spl1. Lters Longbook\'1860) Tilden I II us tl'ated ~06r and - - - J.)ke Book {1 7 - -

New York Public Library, Lincoln Center

(i8 0)

Ha~ Il.lustra ted sony and Joke lJoojs ( 1876 .Hatts ~d Wheeler CampaiGn S0'1g'bO'O'it(1876)

Whig Banner Melodist (1844) Polk Songster (1844) Polk Songster (1844) The lIarp of Freedom, by G.W. Clarke Bell and Everett Songster (1860) Clary, Our Nation'S History in Song Democratic Camp2iRn Songster , (1860) Wide Awake Vocaliot or Rail Splitter's - - Sci"i1'gbook, (1860)- - Paul Glass, The Spirit of the Sixties Sheet Music, library of Congress 'r ilden Illustrated Song and Jole Book(1876) Hayes and Wheeler Songbook,(1876) Hayes and Wheeler Songbook,(1876)

* in v.n. Eawrence. Music for Patriots, Politicians, and Presidents, New York. MacMillan, 1975,




Whig Banner Melodist (1844) Polk Songster (1844) Bell and Everett Songster (1844) Democratic cambaign Songster

New York Public Library, Lincoln Ceneter New York Public Library, Main Branch New York Public Library, Lincoln Center New York Public Library, Lincoln Center

SonG Collections Glass , Paul. ~:he ~irit of the Sixties, A History of the Civil War in Song, St, Louis . Educational Publishers, 1964. Lawrence, Vera Brodsky. Music for Patriots, Politicians, and Presidents. New York. Macmillian. 1975, Papele , Henry. llann~ , But';ons and Songs. Cincinnatii World Library Publications, Inc .• 1968, ~andbu rc Carl. The American Songbag. New York. Harcourt, Brace. Inc" 1927. :}cott , John Anthony. The BaLlad of America. New York, Bantam, 1966. ::; i l ber, Irwin. Songs America Voted .!!Y. Harrisburg, Pal Stackpole Books, 19'1 1.


III. Historic al References Catton , Bruce. The Con;ing Fury. New York. Doubleday, 1961. Kane, Joseph ~. Facts About the Pre3idents. New York. Pocket Books, 1964. I.lo ri oon , Samuel Eliot. The Oxford History of the American People. New York. Ox10rd University Press. 19b5. Roseboom, Eugene. A History of Presidential Elections. New York Macmillan, 1959. 5 chlesinger, Ar thr Iii. The Coming to Power. New York! Chelsea House, 1971. Van Deusen, Glyndon. The Jacksonian Era. New York. Hlrper and Row, 1959. Peter Janovsky Biography Peter Janovsky is C~airman of the Social Studies Department at Grace Dodge High School in New York City, He is also a guitarist and folksinger who performs at colleges, coffeehouses, and folk festivals throughout the East. He has appeared on New York radio stations as well as the National Public Radio Network. In his classes. as well as his concerts. Janovsky uses the songs of a p",riod In history ' to bring that period to life for his students and audiences. He has presented workshops and performed at National Council for the Social Studies Conventions as well as local con'lentions. and libraries In 1975, !.lr . Janovsky was the subject of a profile in the New York T~mes, Referring to some of his original songs aboutNew York City, Richard Shepard called him a "Lyrical 10 cal patriot." Richard B. Mo rris:, Professor Emeritus of History at Columbia Uni'lersi t y, called Janovsky "a delightful performer of historical music. 24

liTHO IN U,S,A, ~'"