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The Temperance Songs of Stephen C. Foster

The Temperance Songs of Stephen C. Foster Paul D. SaNDerS The Temperance Songs of Stephen C. Foster b eginning around 1840 and continuing to the ratification of the National Prohibition act in 1920, temperance reformers in the united States pro- duced an astounding number of songs published in hundreds of tem- perance songsters and as sheet music. These songs were sung at tem- perance meetings and festivals, in schools, and at home. Temperance reformers understood the power of music and freely utilized songs in the battle against “demon rum.” Writing early in the movement, mary Dana exclaimed in The Temperance Lyre, “How wonderfully great is the influence of music! . . . use this weapon freely, my brothers and sisters; tune your cheerful voices till you charm away the evil spirits which have so long troubled this beautiful world.” Such views continued through the history of the movement. Just a few years prior to prohibition, John Clements echoed Dana’s enthusiasm in his preface to Shaw’s Campaign Songs: “once the nation gets to singing the message of temperance, the greatest single stride has been taken toward the birth of the new day that sees whisky banished forever from our land.” although temperance lyricists often set mediocre texts http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png American Music University of Illinois Press

The Temperance Songs of Stephen C. Foster

American Music , Volume 34 (3) – Nov 9, 2016

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Publisher
University of Illinois Press
ISSN
1945-2349

Abstract

Paul D. SaNDerS The Temperance Songs of Stephen C. Foster b eginning around 1840 and continuing to the ratification of the National Prohibition act in 1920, temperance reformers in the united States pro- duced an astounding number of songs published in hundreds of tem- perance songsters and as sheet music. These songs were sung at tem- perance meetings and festivals, in schools, and at home. Temperance reformers understood the power of music and freely utilized songs in the battle against “demon rum.” Writing early in the movement, mary Dana exclaimed in The Temperance Lyre, “How wonderfully great is the influence of music! . . . use this weapon freely, my brothers and sisters; tune your cheerful voices till you charm away the evil spirits which have so long troubled this beautiful world.” Such views continued through the history of the movement. Just a few years prior to prohibition, John Clements echoed Dana’s enthusiasm in his preface to Shaw’s Campaign Songs: “once the nation gets to singing the message of temperance, the greatest single stride has been taken toward the birth of the new day that sees whisky banished forever from our land.” although temperance lyricists often set mediocre texts

Journal

American MusicUniversity of Illinois Press

Published: Nov 9, 2016

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