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CIVIL WAR HISTORY CIVIL WAR MUSIC: Introduction THEMUSIC OF Mm-NINETEENTH-CENTURY AMERICA exhibits a colorful variety of idioms, reflecting the diversified social, economic, political, geographic, and educational conditions of its people. The aging towns and cities of the eastern seaboard and the plantation life of the South contrasted with the dynamic new cities of the Middle and Far West and with frontier Ufe. Though our fine art music had not yet developed a native dialect (most of the serious music-making consisted of transplanted European music), substantial contributions to an American tradition were being made before and during the years of the Civil War. Central to this tradition was the folk and popular music, especially the songs, of urban and rural communities and of the expanding frontier. The events and enthusiasm of the war gave an increased impetus to the production of this type of music. Three of the studies in this coUection—those of Mr. Stutler, Mrs. Epstein , and Mr. HarweU—examine the history and circumstances of creation and performance of some of the songs that were thrown into prominence during the course of the war. Largely concerned with songs also is Mr. Dietz's review of recent recordings of Civü War music. Professor Bernard relates some of the occasions when Lincoln took time from his daily burdens to listen to music—both songs and military band music—while Dr. McCorkle has edited an interesting account of the activities of a southern Moravian band that saw action at Gettysburg. These musicians from Salem, N.C., were descendants of the Moravians from Pennsylvania and North Carolina who had been the most accomplished single group of American musicians during the late eighteenth century. Professor Nathan's examination of the "walk-arounds," an original contribution to the historyofthe popularminstrel show, is taken from his recently completed book on Daniel Decatur Emmett, one of the two outstanding composers and performers of minstrel music. (The other was Stephen Collins Foster.) The essay on Negro spirituals by Dr. Chase constitutes a footnote to a section in his widely acclaimed book, America's Music. 211 Mr. Blum summarizes the development of musical institutions (orchestras , bands, choruses, chamber groups, religious music, music schools, etc. ) in various parts of the country during the war decade and the surrounding years, and mentions noteworthy examples of native composers who made serious attempts to produce works in the larger forms. A similar report is Mrs. SpeU's, wherein she emphasizes the situation in one region during this period: the impact of the war on music-making in Texas and the near Southwest Also representing the fine art tradition is Dr. Grant's engaging account of a recent chamber opera written and performed on a southern university campus. Its story derives from actual events that occurred on that campus during the war. Standing on a middle ground between the serious art music and the popular idiom is the salon music written for piano during the midcentury period. Many bound coUections of sheet music editions of this genre have survived. Professor Carpenter provides a partial account of one such coUection and of one particular piece in it that is related to the events of the war. Though considerable gaps remain in our knowledge concerning this branch in the history of our common national heritage, some blank spaces are now filled by the essays contained in this Special Music issue. The editor especiaUy thanks the contributors for the forbearance and patience they have maintained during the delays that have attended the appearance of this issue. Albert T. Luper State University of Iowa Guest Editor 212 ...


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pp. 211-212
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