The Mudcat Café TM
Thread #122362 Message #2686761
Posted By: Lighter
24-Jul-09 - 09:04 AM
Thread Name: Ship Margaret Evans, songs
Subject: RE: Ship Margaret Evans, songs
Some more on "bulgine."
The earliest examples I can find after various newspaper searches suggest that "bullgines" were well known in New York in the spring and summer of 1844. The Tribune of May 4 carried a political ad reading,
"HURRAH FOR CLAY AND FRELINGHUYSEN! Don't you hear the Bullgine Humming,/ Don't you see the Clay Boys Coming!"
The Utica Daily Gazette of July 3 proves the link with minstrel players:
"The Virginia Minstrels….Mr. N. Jamieson will deliver his celebrated lecture on Locomotion, showing how the Bullgine came in contact with the Sun and run the Cars off the Track."
The Tribune of August 13:
"George Western, the great 'locomotive bulgine,' is letting off steam at the American Museum, New York, to the delight of crowded houses."
And the Herald of August 13, 1845: Mr. Whitlock in his original Locomotive Bulgine, accompanied with a laughable and amusing story.
And now, a gen-u-wine minstrel bullgine joke from the Pittsfield (Mass.) Sun, June 1, 1854:
"Sambo, why am a locomotive bulgine like a bed bug?" "I gib dat up, Mr. Dixon, 'fore you ax it." "Bekase it runs on sleepers."