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American Songsters in General (Exhibit Case 4)
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A Celebration of Traditional Music of Ireland & Elsewhere in Print:

An exhibit of material from the collection of Lewis Becker, Professor of Law, Villanova University School of Law. March 13, 2006 – April 28, 2006 Falvey Memorial Library Villanova University

American Songsters in General (Exhibit Case 4)

Songsters published in the United States in the first half of the 19th century were a combination of the traditional, popular, and newly composed. However, the Forget Me Not Songster seems to have been unusually focused on the traditional.

sing_0180_small.JPGForget Me Not Songster. Containing a Choice Collection of old Ballad Songs, as sung by Our Grandmothers. Embellished with Numerous Engravings.
New York: Nafish & Cornish; Philadelphia: J. B. Perry, 1842

This case includes samples of other American songsters that were more typically a mixture of the traditional and the popular.

Hadaway, T.H. Hadaway’s Select Songster: being a Collection of the Most Approved New and Fashionable Sentimental and Comic Songs, Many of which have been Contributed by Our most Able and Distinguished Vocalists.
Philadelphia: Gihon & Kucher, 1840sing_0018_small.jpg

Souvenir Minstrel, or Singer’s Remember Me: a Choice Collection of
the most admired Songs, Duets, Glees, Choruses, etc…with all the new Songs.
Philadelphia: J. B. Perry, 1842sing_0019_small.jpg

New York Songster: being a Choice Collection of the Most New and Popular American, English, Irish, Scotch Comic, Hunting, Love, Bacchanalian, and Sea Songs, for 1836.
New York: Liddle, [1836]


Samples of more focused songsters:

The Forecastle Songster.
New York: Marsh, 1847

This songster was unusual for its time. Instead of being general in nature it was devoted to a single topic – songs of the sea.

The Sailor Boy’s Songster.
Philadelphia: Fisher and Brother, n.d.

Littell, John S. Clay Minstrel; or National Songster, to Which is Prefixed a Sketch of the Life, Public Services, and Character of Henry Clay.
Philadelphia: Thomas, Cowperthwait and co., 1844

                sing_0015ps_small.jpg                sing_0168ps_small.jpg

The Touch the Elbow Songster. In: Encyclopaedia of Popular Songs: a Choice Collection of Sentimental, Patriotic, Irish, Ethiopian, and Comic Songs …..
New York: Dick & Fitzgerald, 1864


Books were sometimes published that contained a number of songsters that had previously been issued separately. An example is this volume that also reprints four other songsters: Frank Converse’s Old Cremona Songster, The Charley O’Malley Irish Songster, The Love and Sentimental Sonster, and The Heart and Home Songster

In the latter half of the 19th century, songsters began to frequently be printed on cheap paper and bound in colored pictorial covers. Usually, these songsters presented the work of one author or  composer, or they featured reprints of songs previously published.

sing_0173_small.JPGThe Blonde of the Period Songster. Containing nearly 200 Popular Songs of which 20 are Set to Music Expressly for this Work.
New York: Rob’t M. De Witt, 1869

sing_0174_small.JPGBeauty of the Blonde’s Songster. Containing about 200 Choice Songs of which 20 are set to Music expressly for this Work.
New York: Rob’t M. De Witt, 1870                   

sing_0178_small.JPGCanadian Boat Songster.
New York: Rob’t M. De Witt, 1872

Champagne Charlie and Coal Oil Tommy Songster.sing_0170_small.JPG
San Francisco: D. B. Appleton, [1868]

The Daisy Deane Songster.
New York: Rob’t M. De Witt, 1869sing_0177_small.JPG

Sam Devere’s Jumbo Songster.
New York: Popular Pub. Co., n.d.sing_0172_small.JPG

Devere and Allen’s Across the Continent Songster.
New York: Popular Publishing Company, n.d.
sing_0175_small.JPG             sing_0171_small.JPG                 sing_0176_small.JPG              

                                  Firemen’s Songster.                      Guzzlin Jim Songster.
                             Philadelphia: A. Winch, [1868]        New York: Rob’t M. De Witt, 1871

sing_0179_small.JPG(Sol Smith Russell’s) Jeremy Jolly Boy Comic Boy Songster.
New York: Rob’t M. De Witt, 1867

sing_0169_small.JPGParisian Can Can Songster.
New York: Fisher and Denison, [1869]