Index of Articles

Songs Showing Early Resentment of Taxation


In 1765 we begin to find references to the colonies’ resentment of their treatment by England. One of the earliest was a ballad called American Taxation, written soon after the ship Edward arrived in New York bearing news of the passage of the Stamp Act.

In 1767, the year of the Townshend Acts, which laid duties on important commodities for … Continue reading


Early American Songs


Dickinson’s “Liberty Song”

John Dickinson of Delaware is generally credited with being the author of the first patriotic song in America. Dickinson was an ardent patriot, even though he did at first oppose the Declaration of Independence, because he doubted the policy of Congress “without some percursory trials of our strength.” He had long been active in public affairs as … Continue reading


Songs in Honor of Washington


The songs of the years following the Revolution show to what a great extent Washington was idolized. A “New Song” which appeared in the Philadelphia Continental Journal of April 7, 1786, was adapted to the tune of God Save the King:

God save great Washington His worth from ev’ry tongue Demands applause: Ye tuneful powers combine, And each true … Continue reading


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