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Origins: Dixie

DigiTrad:
A HORSE NAMED BILL
DIXIE, THE LAND OF KING COTTON
DIXIE'S LAND


Related threads:
Lyr Add: Horse Named Bill - Know More?? (36)
Lyr Req: meaning of the words in DIXIE (31)
Lyr Req: Sarah the Whale (14)
(origins) Origins: Meaning of lyrics to Dixie Land (15)
Dixie-new origin theory on NPR-interestimg (38)
Folklore: Where is Dixie (57)
Why is 'Dixie' considered racist? (104) (closed)
Lyr Req: Everybody's Dixie (Albert Pike) (4)
(origins) Origins: Dixie (25)


Richie 28 Nov 02 - 01:16 PM
GUEST,Q 28 Nov 02 - 01:44 PM
GUEST,Q 28 Nov 02 - 01:48 PM
masato sakurai 28 Nov 02 - 05:47 PM
masato sakurai 28 Nov 02 - 08:30 PM
Murray MacLeod 28 Nov 02 - 08:56 PM
Richie 28 Nov 02 - 10:03 PM
GUEST,Q 28 Nov 02 - 10:36 PM
GUEST,Q 28 Nov 02 - 10:47 PM
Haruo 28 Nov 02 - 11:07 PM
GUEST,Q 28 Nov 02 - 11:28 PM
GUEST,ta2 29 Nov 02 - 08:56 AM
GUEST,Frankham 29 Nov 02 - 10:25 AM
GUEST,Q 29 Nov 02 - 01:56 PM
Richie 29 Nov 02 - 08:53 PM
Richie 29 Nov 02 - 09:20 PM
masato sakurai 29 Nov 02 - 10:20 PM
GUEST,Q 29 Nov 02 - 10:34 PM
masato sakurai 29 Nov 02 - 10:55 PM
masato sakurai 29 Nov 02 - 10:58 PM
Richie 29 Nov 02 - 11:04 PM
GUEST,Q 30 Nov 02 - 01:56 AM
fox4zero 30 Nov 02 - 02:00 AM
masato sakurai 30 Nov 02 - 04:54 AM
masato sakurai 30 Nov 02 - 05:57 AM
masato sakurai 30 Nov 02 - 07:02 AM
GUEST,Q 30 Nov 02 - 02:03 PM
masato sakurai 30 Nov 02 - 08:56 PM
IanC 02 Dec 02 - 05:52 AM
GUEST,Frankham 02 Dec 02 - 03:29 PM
GUEST,Ole Bull 03 Dec 02 - 11:22 AM
GUEST,.gargoyle 03 Dec 02 - 09:11 PM
GUEST,Q 03 Dec 02 - 10:29 PM
GUEST,.gargoyle 03 Dec 02 - 10:47 PM
GUEST,Q 03 Dec 02 - 11:14 PM
GUEST,.gargoyle 03 Dec 02 - 11:24 PM
GUEST,frankham 04 Dec 02 - 02:54 PM
GUEST,Q 04 Dec 02 - 04:22 PM
GUEST,Q 04 Dec 02 - 04:38 PM
Nigel Parsons 09 Feb 03 - 11:34 AM
Frankham 09 Feb 03 - 01:28 PM
Joe Offer 29 Oct 03 - 04:47 PM
McGrath of Harlow 29 Oct 03 - 07:20 PM
GUEST,Q 29 Oct 03 - 08:01 PM
GUEST,Q 29 Oct 03 - 08:04 PM
GUEST,Q 29 Oct 03 - 08:32 PM
GUEST,Q 29 Oct 03 - 08:37 PM
Jon W. 30 Oct 03 - 01:48 AM
Rex 30 Oct 03 - 12:58 PM
GUEST,AR282 30 Oct 03 - 01:47 PM
McGrath of Harlow 30 Oct 03 - 03:17 PM
Q (Frank Staplin) 30 Oct 03 - 03:56 PM
masato sakurai 30 Oct 03 - 06:22 PM
Q (Frank Staplin) 23 May 05 - 02:00 PM
GUEST 05 Jun 05 - 04:37 PM
Q (Frank Staplin) 05 Jun 05 - 08:09 PM
McGrath of Harlow 05 Jun 05 - 08:29 PM
GUEST 06 Jun 05 - 03:07 AM
Q (Frank Staplin) 05 Nov 08 - 09:33 PM
McGrath of Harlow 06 Nov 08 - 08:58 PM
Q (Frank Staplin) 06 Nov 08 - 11:12 PM
Desert Dancer 02 Apr 12 - 09:17 PM
GUEST,Lighter 03 Apr 12 - 09:50 AM
Q (Frank Staplin) 03 Apr 12 - 03:00 PM
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Gibb Sahib 01 Jul 12 - 04:49 PM
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Subject: Origin: Dixie
From: Richie
Date: 28 Nov 02 - 01:16 PM

I'm sure ther's been some debate on this and even a book about teh black origin (Snowden family) but I though William Shakespeare Hays version of "Dixie" should be included. Both Emmett and Hays published versions in the same year 1860, giving further creedence to the evidence that Dixie was arranged from "minstrel or African American sources.

Benjamin Robert Tubb posted Hays version on his excellent site: Public Domain Music. Tubb commented to me that "Hays' version of "Dixie" may well be more authentic. There are definite similarities. Emmet's version was afterall "arranged" by W. L. Hobbs."

Benjamin Robert Tubb: William Shakespeare Hays was born in Louisville, KY on 19 July 1837 and died there at the age of 70 on 23 July 1907. His parents were Hugh and Martha (Richardson) Hays. He married Belle McCullough in July of 1865. His known children are Mattie Belle Hays (dedicated to, in the song O, Let Me Kiss the Baby, 1867), Susie Hobbs Hays (dedicated to, in the song Kiss Me, Good Night, Mama, 1870) and Samuel Brown Hays (dedicated to, in the song How Much Does the Baby Weigh, 1880).
His most popular songs were Evangeline (1862), The Drummer Boy of Shiloh (1863), We Parted by the River (1866), The Little Old Cabin in the Lane (1871), Molly Darling (1871) [with 3 million copies published], Susan Jane (1871), Oh! Sam (1872), Angels Meet Me at the Cross Roads (1875). Early in de Mornin' (1877), Roll Out! Heave Dat Cotton (1877).
He composed approximately 350 songs. Two sigificant collections, detailed as items 286 (manuscripts) and 813 (prints and photographs), are at The Filson Club Historical Society of Kentucky.

Lyr. Add: DIXIE

To Capt. J. B. O'Bannon, Tywopita, Ky. [Title page:] "Way Down in Dixie" (1860)[Cover page: "Away Down in Dixie's Land"]
As Sung by Hooley's Minstrels, Words by "Jerry Blossom,"
[Cover page: Music by "Dixie, Jr." [Title page: "by Young Dixie"]
[pseud. for William Shakespeare Hays, 1837-1907]
Boston, MA: O. Ditson & Co., Plate No. 1202-5
[Copyrighted by D. P. Faulds & Co., in Kentucky]
Source: os76@UNC-CH

1.
Oh Dixie am de paradise
Whar de raise de cotton and de rice,
Come away
Boy's away boy's away,
Down in Dixie
Whar de Gal's grow tall
And de Babies small,
And some folks dey don't grow at all,
Come away boy's away, boy's away down in Dixie.

CHORUS: Then, come let's go to Dixie,
Yah! ho! yah ho!
We'll sing dis song, de whole night long,
When we go down in Dixie.
Away, away,
We'll all be off for Dixie,
Away away,
We'll soon be off for Dixie.

2. Dar was a girl in Dixie's land,
I ax'd her for her head and hand,
Come away boy's, away boys, away
Down in Dixie,
Then she smiled an' gib me her consent
I got de Gal away we went,
Come away boys, away, boys away down in Dixie.

3. And when she went to bed one night,
She could'nt see for want of light,
Away! boys, away! away down in Dixie,
She lit de lite, as any one mout,
She put it in bed and blowed her sef out,
Away! boys, away! away down in Dixie.

(CHORUS)

4.De boy's down dar dey live on chicken;
And de babies like lasses,--dey want a lickin,
And away! boys, away! away down south in Dixie,
Dar face's am as broad as a farm in de Souf,
Like de Mississippi riber got snag's in de Mouf,
Then away boys, away down south in Dixie.

(CHORUS)

5. Oh, come now boys, since you've heard our story,
To de land of light and glory,
Come away, boys, away! away down south in Dixie,
O! our hearts am gay! we're a happy band,
Good bye! folks now for Dixie's land,
Away! boys, away! away down south in Dixie.

(CHORUS)

Comments?

-Richie


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Subject: RE: Origin: Dixie
From: GUEST,Q
Date: 28 Nov 02 - 01:44 PM

For comparisons, see thread on Dixie's Land, 25204:


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Subject: RE: Origins: Dixie
From: GUEST,Q
Date: 28 Nov 02 - 01:48 PM

Link cut off- Dixie's Land


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Subject: RE: Origins: Dixie
From: masato sakurai
Date: 28 Nov 02 - 05:47 PM

Away down in Dixie's land / words by Jerry Blossom ; music by Dixie, Jr. (Boston, Mass. : O. Ditson & Co., 1860) [sheet music from American Memory].

midi (from Public Domain Music)


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Subject: RE: Origins: Dixie
From: masato sakurai
Date: 28 Nov 02 - 08:30 PM

The link to the whole sheet music


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Subject: RE: Origins: Dixie
From: Murray MacLeod
Date: 28 Nov 02 - 08:56 PM

All good stuff, but what I really want to know is why the word "Dixie" was used in the first place to refer to the South.

Derives from "Mason -Dixon" ? Highly implausible, IMHO.

I did however find an interesting snippet Here . Don't know that I give much credence to it however.

Murray


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Subject: RE: Origins: Dixie
From: Richie
Date: 28 Nov 02 - 10:03 PM

The melody for both Emmett's and Hays tune is nearly identical. The words to Hays version seem be more authentic, as if they were based on a local minstrel source or perhaps the same source as Emmett's.

The lyrics are also very similar:

Hays-
Away, away,
We'll all be off for Dixie,
Away away,
We'll soon be off for Dixie.

Emmett-
Away, away,
Away down south in Dixie,
Away, away,
Away down south in Dixie.

Since they were both "composed" in 1960 by different men in different locations (Ohio and Kentucky) and asuming that e-mail and horses were a slow form of communication, it seems they would have been based on a common minstrel source or one copied from the other.

Has anyone heard of any comparisions of the two works? And if not, why haven't there been any?

-Richie


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Subject: RE: Origins: Dixie
From: GUEST,Q
Date: 28 Nov 02 - 10:36 PM

The origin of "Dixie" is obscure, but the apparent first use of the term in print dates to Dan Emmett and his minstrel song, "Dixie's Land," 1859. The New York Herald published the song April 4, 1859, upon the occasion of a performance by Bryant's Minstrels- "In Dixie Lann whar I was born in, Arly on one frosty mawnin,...." The spelling departs from Emmett's, probably how the reporter heard it. The article discusses "Dixie's Land, another new plantation festival." (This from The Oxford English Dictionary, 1987 Supplement)

I think most southerners trace the name to the banknote and "dix," but with little reason. How widespread was the use of the note?
When our coinage was named, Jefferson in 1785 came up with disme, from the French dixième, meaning a tenth. The first pronunciation was deem, but soon became dime. (From H. L. Mencken, "The American Language")

In 1861, G. Putnam published a book referring to the South as Dixie. "Before and After the Battle, a Day and Night in Dixie," was the title. Very soon, the name spread across the country.

(The southern part of the land occupied by the Mormons, extending into Arizona, was called Dixie. The Mormons made a strong wine which they called Dixie)


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Subject: RE: Origins: Dixie
From: GUEST,Q
Date: 28 Nov 02 - 10:47 PM

Emmett's song was in use by Bryant's Minstrels before the sheet music was published in 1860. (See NY Herald, May 1859, post above) Exactly how much earlier would require going through newspaper files in the towns where Bryant's Minstrels performed for mention of the song.

The same could hold true for Hays' version.


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Subject: RE: Origins: Dixie
From: Haruo
Date: 28 Nov 02 - 11:07 PM

Mormon winemaking could be a whole separate thread. Was "Dixie" made for export or for sacramental use, or is teetotaling a newfangled notion in those circles, like monogamy? (I think the southern part of their territory is also where there's the most resistance to the apostolic outlawing of polygamy; are the polygamists also imbibers of strong wines?)

Haruo


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Subject: RE: Origins: Dixie
From: GUEST,Q
Date: 28 Nov 02 - 11:28 PM

You will have to ask a blackjack Mormon.


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Subject: RE: Origins: Dixie
From: GUEST,ta2
Date: 29 Nov 02 - 08:56 AM

i thought the mason-dixon line was a civil war fronteir between "north" and "south"............assumed that's where "dixie" came from


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Subject: RE: Origins: Dixie
From: GUEST,Frankham
Date: 29 Nov 02 - 10:25 AM

Hi All,

I ran across some information that might be true or not. In an old songbook I saw reference to a Dick's Farm, a working plantation on Long Island, New York whereby the help was paid to reproduce a plantation in the south. Dick's Land became Dixie's Land or Dicksey's Land. Wish Emmett were around to confirm or reject this theory.

The Mason-Dixon theory or the French "dix" theory seemed weak to me also. Anybody ever heard of Dick's Farm or Dix's Farm?

Frank


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Subject: RE: Origins: Dixie
From: GUEST,Q
Date: 29 Nov 02 - 01:56 PM

This website has links to several articles on Dixie and its origins, including one from the Encyclopaedia Britannica. Dixie Links
One of them refers to the Black Snowden family in Ohio.
Search of the records shows this is dubious, since the Snowden brothers at the time Emmett was there would only have been 5-6 years old. This is mentioned in a couple of websites, but no real evidence is cited one way or the other. The story seems to have been from a family story told much later.
The story about the "Dixy" farm in Manhattan is a late anecdote. There is no evidence that the word came from Dixon of the Mason-Dixon survey and line. The story that circus workers referred to Dixie when they pulled up stakes to move south cannot be dated- was this before or after the song's composition? Someone said it is too bad that we can't ask Emmett. Is there a medium in the house?

An interesting letter, here, written in 1893, by a man who knew Emmett and one of the Bryant brothers. Interesting sidelights on Emmett and his "walk-around" composition for the Bryant Minstrels. This letter would place the date of the composition in 1859. Dixie origin . The lyrics of Dixie given at this website is a revised and abbreviated version of the one with the later New Orleans buckwheat verse.

The best answer is that the origin of the word is "obscure."

Genealogists say that the surname "Dixie" is Saxon. Emmett descended from German immigrants. No connection likely here.


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Subject: RE: Origins: Dixie
From: Richie
Date: 29 Nov 02 - 08:53 PM

I'm not concerned about what the word "Dixie" means.

I have read the Snowden book and there's more evidence than Guest Q has mentioned. Still as I remember the book doesn't offer much but speculation.

The point of the book is: that Emmett learned Dixie from an African- American source, possibly the Snowden's or more likely their extended family.

Nowhere have we seen comparisons of Hays' "Dixie" (to Emmett's) or elaborate investigations into the origin of Hays' version. Why?

Can we investigate that here on Mudcat?

-Richie


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Subject: RE: Origins: Dixie
From: Richie
Date: 29 Nov 02 - 09:20 PM

Here's some info on the Hays dispute and a bit about the origin of the word.

[From the Richmond Dispatch, March 19, 1893.]
Dan Emmett its Author and New York the Place of Its Production.

"Sunday afternoon he had the words, commencing: "I wish I was in Dixie." This colloquial expression was not, as most people suppose, a Southern phrase, but first appeared among the circus people of the North. In early fall, when nipping frosts would overtake the tented wanderers, the boys would think of the genial warmth of that section for which they were heading, and the common expression would be, "Well, I wish I was down in Dixie."

BECAME THE RAGE.

       This gave the catch line: the rest of the song was original. On Monday morning the song was rehearsed and highly commended, and at night a crowded house caught up the refrain and half the audience went home whistling "Dixie." Bryant gave Emmett $5 for his work. The song became the rage, and "Newcombe's," "Buckley's," and other minstrel bands paid Emmett $5 for the privilege of using it. Mr. Werlean, of New Orleans, wrote to Emmett to secure the copyright, but, without waiting for an answer, published it with the words by Mr. Peters, of New York. He afterwards secured the copyright from Emmett and gave him $600. But Werlean sold thousands of copies without giving Dan a nickel. Not only was Emmett robbed of the profit of his songs, but its authorship was disputed. Will F. Hays claimed it as his own.

REAPED NO BENEFIT.

       Pond brought the matter before a musical publishers' convention and settled the question of authorship; but Dan reaped no benefit from this tardy justice."




Since Hays disputed the authorship, it would be interesting to hear his side of the story. How can we find that?

Emmett is notorious for borrowing and arranging material that he did not author. Emmett might of won the case because he had the political and economic backing, and not because he was the author. Obviously, he penned/arranged some of the lyrics. The fact that the song was a hit for his publisher made it important to establish Emmett as the sole author.

Was he?

-Richie


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Subject: RE: Origins: Dixie
From: masato sakurai
Date: 29 Nov 02 - 10:20 PM

In 1860, another music sheet (piano version without lyrics) was published (CLICK HERE for the sheet):

Jones, Paul, arr.
Get Out of the Wilderness; Dixie's Land, piano
"Get out of the Wilderness And Dixie's Land, two popular airs as played by Capt. A. Menter and his American Cornet Band."
Price: 25 cents
Cover design
Inside title: (p. 3) "Get out of the Wilderness. As played by Menters Brass Band. Arranged for the piano by Paul Jones." (p. 4) "Dixeys Land"
At bottom of p. 4, referring to "Dixeys Land": "Published by permission of Firth, Pond & Co., owners of the copyright."
4 p.
Cincinnati: John Church, Jr., 1860.
"Cincinnati: Published by John Church, Jr., 66 West Fourth Street. Philad.: Lee & Walker. Boston: Oliver Ditson & Co. New York: Firth, Pond & Co.
At bottom of 1st page of music: "Entered according to Act of Congress, A.D. 1860, by J. Church Jr. in the Clerks Office of the District Court of the Southern District of Ohio."
Pub. Pl. no. n/a


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Subject: RE: Origins: Dixie
From: GUEST,Q
Date: 29 Nov 02 - 10:34 PM

So far, can't find anything much on Hays' "Away Down in Dixie's Land" beyond what is in the Public Domain website. The song apparently never caught the public's attention.

Dan Emmett had the first performance of his song in 1859 or before. The W. L. Hobbs 1860 arrangement was for the piano, not minstrel use, and deletes some of the early "Negro" lines which can be found in the book and Ms of Galbreath, C. B., "Daniel Decatur Emmett, Author of 'Dixie'," published by Heer in 1904, and manuscript in Ohio State Archaeological and Historical Library. This has been reported before in thread 25204: Emmett . Just how long before the 1859 performance this was written is not noted on the University of Toronto website. The 1893 letter written by a man who knew Emmett and one of the Bryants', linked above, suggests that the song was first performed in 1859. Hobbs apparently had nothing to do with the first version(s) of Emmett's song and its minstrel performance.
Also not seen is the book by Nathan, mentioned above by Masato, which may have some newer researched evidence. These books and Ms should be checked before drawing further conclusions here about Emmett's work. Newspaper reports may also be helpful.

Unless someone is willing to go to these books and old newspapers, and also look for possible archives of Hays papers, little more can be investigated here. Internet possibilities have been exhausted. Masato may have access to the books. I don't believe any of us has the time or travel money to do original research.

Murray MacLeod and others, led by the title of this thread, have asked about the origin of the word Dixie. For them, some evidence and speculation has been posted.
One addition, perhaps posted before- "dixie" is a British Army name for a cooking pot or "billy," picked up from the days of the British Empire in India. Now if someone is willing to make up a story about how a cooking pot provided the name for the South...!


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Subject: RE: Origins: Dixie
From: masato sakurai
Date: 29 Nov 02 - 10:55 PM

Images of "Way down in Dixie's land" at 19th Century American Sheet Music Digitization Project are colored (Click here, and scroll down to "Dixie, Jr. [pseud.]").


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Subject: RE: Origins: Dixie
From: masato sakurai
Date: 29 Nov 02 - 10:58 PM

Correction: The link is 19th Century American Sheet Music Digitization Project.


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Subject: RE: Origins: Dixie
From: Richie
Date: 29 Nov 02 - 11:04 PM

Thanks Guest Q and Masato, if there's any info on the web, Masato can find it!

It's possible to do research with out leaving the farm. It called E-mail a librarian (who has the info at their disposal).

We just need to find out what libraries or newpapers would have archives and the date.

Does anyone know when the authorship dispute between Hays and Emmett was?

-Richie


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Subject: RE: Origins: Dixie
From: GUEST,Q
Date: 30 Nov 02 - 01:56 AM

Research of this kind is difficult. Not easy to get material from many institutional archival collections. To check microfilm or boxed archival material you must present yourself. No librarian can spare the time to go through newspaper films or boxes of archived material unless you can specify the exact item wanted. Many turn down email requests and internet search of their catalogues (only the well-funded ones will have this) is limited to those within the system.
In researching topics concerned with the West, on occasion I have gone outside of the local university and local archives. A charge, or donation, was asked for after I received an introduction. In addition, I knew the periodical and the article or news item I wanted. Even locally at a museum archive I was not allowed to copy an image, but had to go through the curator, schedule an appointment with the staff photographer, and pay for his work. In addition, I agreed not to publish on the item without their approval. This is not unusual.
I posted the original version of a song here about a year ago on which I knew the exact issue of the mining town newspaper in which it appeared and it cost me a $20 "donation." The archive lacked a good scanner and it took them several tries to send me a legible copy by email. They also don't have the money to digitize or microfilm that old newspaper, important to local historians, of which they have the only copies.
If I were a member of a university staff or an enrolled graduate student, I would be able to do much more. At a couple of schools, I have a friend who will check institutions in his state system. I have no such contacts at the likely sites for the information wanted here. Newspapers in the towns where the minstrel troupes appeared would need to be checked (routines varied from town to town and the better troupes revised material for each major stop).

It might be easier to find out if there is a Hays archive or a thesis on W. S. Hays. Most large universities have lists, or can get them, of theses done at American and Canadian institutions. If an archive of Hays' papers can be found, however, then arrangements may be made for someone to go through them, searching for pertinent material. Do not expect the archivists to do it for you. Present yourself (or proxy), don the little white gloves, and have at it (after, of course, you have ben vetted).

Changing the subject back to Dixie, why did Emmett call his minstrel piece "Dixie's Land"? (original title) and not simply Dixie, as it later became? Another unanswered question.

Was there an authorship dispute in reality? Was it between the two authors or between two minstrel troupes? The two books Masato and I have mentioned may have something on this, and would be the first place to look.


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Subject: RE: Origins: Dixie
From: fox4zero
Date: 30 Nov 02 - 02:00 AM

As far as the word Dixie, not the song, my Father (who knew everything)told me that it was a reference to "dix" meaning "10" on the currency of French Louisiana territory.

Larry Parish


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Subject: RE: Origins: Dixie
From: masato sakurai
Date: 30 Nov 02 - 04:54 AM

A later Paul Jones edition (1869) of "Get Out of the Wilderness and Dixie's Land" is at the Levy collection.

Title: Get Out of the Wilderness and Dixie's Land.
Composer, Lyricist, Arranger: Arranged for the Piano by Paul Jones.
Publication: Cincinnati: John Church, Jr., 66 West Fourth Street, 1869.
Form of Composition: da capo
Instrumentation: piano
Performer: Two Popular Airs as played by Capt. A. Menter and His American Cornet Band.
Call No.: Box: 160 Item: 105


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Subject: RE: Origins: Dixie
From: masato sakurai
Date: 30 Nov 02 - 05:57 AM

Neither "(A)way down in Dixie's Land", "Dixie, Jr." or "W.S. Hays" is not mentioned in Nathan's Dan Emmett and the Rise of Early Negro Minstrelsy (according to the index of the book).

There's an article online:
"Dixie" and Its Author by Robert Sheerin (The Century; a popular quarterly. / Volume 50, Issue 6, Oct 1895, pp. 958-960). The manuscript reproduced on page 959, which is also in Nathan's book (p. 249), was written much later ("It is generally believed that the original manuscript of the song is lost. All the manuscript copies now extant were made by Emmett in the nineties and later, when he lived as a pauper in Mount Vernon, Ohio." -- Nathan, p. 250).

~Masato


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Subject: RE: Origins: Dixie
From: masato sakurai
Date: 30 Nov 02 - 07:02 AM

"Neither ... is mentioned". I think I have to study English grammar over again.


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Subject: RE: Origins: Dixie
From: GUEST,Q
Date: 30 Nov 02 - 02:03 PM

Hays also must have had trouble making a living in his later years. His later songs were not published at the time. He re-wrote earlier successes, such as "The Little Old Cabin in the Lane," using the idea of the black man returning to the scene of his happy enslavement in several of the songs.
His steamboat songs are almost unknown now. "Down in de Co'n Fiel'" is particularly evocative.
Of course, his views would not have been accepted much outside of the South and the South was impoverished in the 1870s-1880s. Moreover, the rise of the Black (not blackface) minstrel troupes such as Bland's may have been a factor as well.

Can't locate a published biography of Hays at the booksellers.
The rather curious Sacks and Sacks, "Way Up North in Dixie, A Black Family's Claim to the Confederate Anthem," is available in paperback.


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Subject: RE: Origins: Dixie
From: masato sakurai
Date: 30 Nov 02 - 08:56 PM

Hays wrote another song under the pseudonymn of "Jerry Blossom." See the cover of "That Southern Wagon"(1862) [from the Levy collection], where the composer is "Jerry Blossom (W.S.H.)." My guess is that Hays wrote the words, not the tune, thus the composer's name is "Dixie, Jr."
~Masato


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Subject: RE: Origins: Dixie
From: IanC
Date: 02 Dec 02 - 05:52 AM

Masato

Think of it as having a hidden phrase ... Neither [the one nor the other] is mentioned.

:-)


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Subject: RE: Origins: Dixie
From: GUEST,Frankham
Date: 02 Dec 02 - 03:29 PM

The theory that Dixey's Land was a working plantation was dismissed as anecdotal. It was however reputed to be in Long Island, not Manhattan.

The question of Dixey's Land seems a possibility that there may have in fact been a Mr. Dix, somewhere.

It still hasn't been put to rest.

Frank


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Subject: RE: Origins: Dixie
From: GUEST,Ole Bull
Date: 03 Dec 02 - 11:22 AM

What you see here, the liberal borrowing and disputed authorship, was most common at that time. Two very good Minstrel antebellum examples where multiples of same, similar or same in title only, published within a year of each other were the popular tunes "Old Tare River" and "Mary Blane." And the tune juxtaposed above; "Out de Wilderness," is a model of song evolved or "borrowed" from "Down in Alabam" into "old Gray Mare" and "Jine the Cavalry."

There is a story that Stephen Foster's brother caught Nelson Kneass at the post office trying to copyright Stephen's performance of the night before that had not yet published. So don't be mislead by this horse and buggy era- the musicians all had big ears and paid attention. That is why the 100-year argument begun by Harris that Minstrelsy was a totally white invention having nothing to do with slave influence, is contrived or even absurd.

Hence, the other intriguing question about the Snowdens is how much they were influenced by Emmett; and Sachs never even discusses it.

You guys know the folk process is a continuum; and it flows both ways.

And if you can ascertain the origin of the word Dixie then you can try also "Yankee" or maybe even "Jazz"


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Subject: RE: Origins: Dixie
From: GUEST,.gargoyle
Date: 03 Dec 02 - 09:11 PM

If the scholars are in doubt – it becomes a mudcat shout.

Sorry folks, I weigh in with Mason Dixon. (btw …Penchyon's book is a grand read….lively and full of fun….(of course cherry coke appears.))

Oxford Companion to American Literature James D. Hart, Fifth Edition, New York, 1983, p 205.
>

"Dixie" patriotic song, probably composed by Dan Emmett (1859), member of Don Bryant's minstrel troupe. Its greatest popularity has been in the South, where it was sung by Confederate soldiers. Dixie signifies "de land ob cotton," but the origin of the name is uncertain. It is sometimes supposed to be a corruption of the name of Jeremiah Dixon who with Charles Mason (1763-67) surveyed the boundary which later separated slave and free states.

New Dictionary of American Slang Robert L. Chyapman, Harper and Row Publisher, New York, 1980, p105.

Dixie n.The southern United States. Modifier Dixieland [probably because the region is south of the Mason-Dixon line]

Random House Dictionary of the English Language, Jess Stein, New York, 1973, p 421.

[? (Mason-)Dix (on-line) + ie]

Sincerely,
Gargoyle


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Subject: RE: Origins: Dixie
From: GUEST,Q
Date: 03 Dec 02 - 10:29 PM

Anyone can speculate. Where's the beef?


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Subject: RE: Origins: Dixie
From: GUEST,.gargoyle
Date: 03 Dec 02 - 10:47 PM

Ahhh, Guest Q....you are soul after this own man...I cannot agree more.

Therefore, on to a favorite source for American folk-words – there is a good story in how Lighter took on this lifetime task of cataloging slang, how he organizes his material, and how he has fought with the publishers

Randon House Historical Dictionary of American Slang, Volume 1, A-G J. E. Lighter, New York, 1994, p 609.

Dixie n. [orig. unkn.; associated with the song "Dixie's Land" (popularly "Dixie") written by the Ohioan Daniel D. Emmet (1815)-1904), a celebrated blackface minstrel, and first performed April 4, 1859, in New York City; the form Dixie Land had appeared without explanation or elaboration in Emmett's sone "Jonny Roach," performed in February of the same year. Of various proposed etymologies, that sugg. by Hotze in the 1861 quot. below is perh. to be favored in phonological as well as historical grounds. The assertiion (1872 N.Y Weekly quot. below) that the phrase Dixie's Land had been part of a N.Y.C. children's game for many decades cannot be substantiated and even if true would not explain the phrase's origin. See H. Nathan , Dan Emmett, pp. 243-75 for a full discussion. (The existence of a minstrel showman named Dixy (1951 quot. below) and a blackface character called Dixie in a skit of 1850 (Nathan, p. 265) is intriguing, but neither can be shown to have influeneced the development of the present word; se also 1872 Emmett, below.)]

1. the southern states of the United States, esp. those that were part of the Confederacy. Now colloq. er S.E. [The word was colloq. or S.E. soon after the Civil War but was slang in earliest use.]
1859(Feb.) D. Emmett "Jonny Roach" (minstrel song), in H. Nathan Dan Emmett 358: Gib me de place called Dixie Land./Wid hoe and shubble in my hand. 1859 (Apr.) D. Emmett, in Ibid 249: Dixie's Land…In Dixie Land whar I was born in…..Den I wish I was in Dixie…To lib and die in Dixie…away down south in Dixie. 1861 H. Hotze, in Harwell Confed. Reader 27: This tune of "Dixie…we shall be fortunate if it does not impose its very name on our country. Ibid. 29: The word "Dixie" is an abbreviation of "Mason and Dixon's line."….Years before I heard the tune I have heard negroes in the North us the word "Dixie" in that sense, as familarly as we do the more lengthy phrase from which it is derived.
1863 in Theaker Through One Man's Eye 62: This is about the finest country that I have seen since I came into "Dixie." 1863[Fitch] Annals of Army 531: Said articles were redy to be sent to "Dixie." 1864 in A. W. Petty 3d Mo. Cav. 62: We resumed the march to Dixie in better spirits. 1865 in Blackett Chester 253:They…must bid farewell to "Dixie" basnner to be true to. 1870F.M. Myers Comanches 375: There was no longer a "Dixie" banner to be true to. 1872 D. Emmett, in Nathan D. Emmett 287: "Dixies's Land" is an old phrase applied to the Southern States…lying south of Mason and Sixon's line. In my traveling days amonst showmen [ before 1859], when we would start for a winter's season south, while speaking of the change, they would invariabley ejactulat (sic) the stereotyped saying – "I Wish I was in Dixie's Land," meaning the southern country. 1872 N.Y. Weekly (Dec. 30) 6: Is origin has been described as Southern, but such is not the case. During any time within the last eighty yers the term "Dixie's Land," has been in use with the New York boys while engaged in the game of "tag." 1951 M.M. Mathews in AS (Dec) XXVI 288: A minstrel named Dixey…was at the Arch Street Theater in Philadelphia on 28 December 1856….There is no evidence of the use of Dixie(empahsis added by g.) (or as the name of ten-dollar bill) befor4e the appearance of [Emmett's] song.

Sincerely,
Gargoyle


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Subject: RE: Origins: Dixie
From: GUEST,Q
Date: 03 Dec 02 - 11:14 PM

Nice little article. The explanation that Dixie came from Jeremiah Dixon's name does seem the more likely of the speculations. Another point is that Emmett called it Dixie's Land. This seems to indicate that someone with the name Dixie (or similar Dixon) was involved with the name.

"Dix" the bank note seems unlikely because it was local paper in the New Orleans area for a rather short time. I doubt that it would have been known in the South generally. Some of the best buildings in the old "French" part of N. O. were built with Spanish capital. Most serious business in N. O. (1810-1850) would have involved French, Spanish, British and American currencies and, of course, notes of credit on banks in major centers and their branches in N. O.

I am keeping my powder dry (sticking with obscure) but someone, somewhere, should have used Dixie in print or in journals or letters before 1859 when Emmett wrote the song. Although most old paper has been lost, I haven't lost hope of someone coming up with the beef.


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Subject: RE: Origins: Dixie
From: GUEST,.gargoyle
Date: 03 Dec 02 - 11:24 PM

Until another verifiable source steps forward...I'll go with Lighter's version....the man is a far more disciplined scholar than anyone frequenting the MC.

Sincerely,
Gargoyle


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Subject: RE: Origins: Dixie
From: GUEST,frankham
Date: 04 Dec 02 - 02:54 PM

Ole Bull (related to the Norwegian fiddler?) mentioned that the words "Yankee" and "jazz" had obscure beginnings. Don't know about "Yankee" probably emanating from "Yankee Doodle" a Revolutionary War character, but "Jazz" is very specific from the word "Jass" which means to do you know what. Rock and roll has the same connotations.

I hold with the theory the Dixy or Dixey was a person. Dixey's Land ito me means ownership of some sort whether as a denizen or actual landowner. In spite of all the learned scholarship here which is enlightening we may never really know the answer. One thing about speculating about folklore, it becomes folklore sooner than it does fact regardless of the tomes of study on it's behalf.

Frank



Frank


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Subject: RE: Origins: Dixie
From: GUEST,Q
Date: 04 Dec 02 - 04:22 PM

If you want to search Dixie-Dixey-Dixy, there are a lot of them. The first family landed in Massachusetts. There were many in the 17th century records.The earliest listed is possibly a mis-typing- 1578 (should be 1678?), Elizabeth Dixie, Beverly, Essex, Massachusetts, who married a Samuel Morgan. There were Dixies all over by the beginning of the 19th century. None seems to have called enough attention to himself to have had his name used for the South.


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Subject: RE: Origins: Dixie
From: GUEST,Q
Date: 04 Dec 02 - 04:38 PM

Benjamin Snowden, according to Ohio Census records, mulatto, was born in 1847. The brother, Lewis, was born in 1852. Both were children when Emmett is supposed to have met them.


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Subject: RE: Origins: Dixie
From: Nigel Parsons
Date: 09 Feb 03 - 11:34 AM

IanC: possibly Masato's correction of his use of "neither....." relates to the fact that the sentence includes 3 options "Neither "(A)way down in Dixie's Land", "Dixie, Jr." or "W.S. Hays" is ". and either/or & neither/nor are only used to compare two possibilities.

Nigel


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Subject: RE: Origins: Dixie
From: Frankham
Date: 09 Feb 03 - 01:28 PM

This is a very informative thread. Unfortunately not conclusive but based on speculation of scholars. There is a tendency on the part of every scholar seeking origins of songs to attribute them to the authorship of a single person(s). The problem with this is that if you look at the copyright rolls of the Harry Fox Agency or any other official record of ownership, you find that lots of people have claimed authorship and whether they actually wrote the songs will be questionable. It goes along with the "fakelore-folklore" discussion.

There were many versions of "Dixey's Land" which quickly went into aural transmission. Who is really sure where Emmett got it? As Karen Lin mentions in her book, "The Half -Barbaric Twang", there was a propensity for Northern white mintrel show entertainers to take excursions into black communities and "study" the songs and dances to be used commercially. Emmett himself may never have traveled South beyond Cincinnatti but the practice could be done in any black neighborhood in the early days.

You may find a first printed page of a folk song but not necessarilly a beginning origin.

Frank


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Subject: Lyr Add: Albert Pike's Dixie
From: Joe Offer
Date: 29 Oct 03 - 04:47 PM

In this thread (click) Rex announced his new CD of traditional and historic songs. The only one of the 21 songs that I couldn't find at Mudcat was "General Pike's Dixie." I found the following lyrics at http://www.couchgenweb.com/civilwar/saline18.htm, but I don't know if they're complete or accurate. Anybody got a tune? Is this an early version of the well-known "Dixie," or is it a different song?
-Joe Offer-


ALBERT PIKE'S DIXIE
(Albert Pike)

Southrons, hear your country call you!
Up, lest worse than death befall you!
To arms! To arms! To arms! In Dixie!
Lo! All the beacon fires are lighted,
Let all hearts be now united!
To arms! To arms! To arms! In Dixie!

Chorus:
Advance the flag of Dixie!
Hurrah! Hurrah! For Dixie's Land we take our stand,
And live or die for Dixie!
To arms! To arms!
And conquer peace for Dixie!
To arms! To arms!
And conquer peace for Dixie!


Here's the lyrics from bartleby.com, Yale Book of American Verse.

Thomas R. Lounsbury, ed. (1838–1915). Yale Book of American Verse.  1912.
 
Albert Pike. 1809–1891
 
109. Dixie
 

SOUTHRONS, hear your Country call you! 
Up, lest worse than death befall you! 
To arms! To arms! To arms, in Dixie! 
Lo! all the beacon-fires are lighted, 
Let all hearts be now united!         5
  To arms! To arms! To arms! in Dixie! 
    Advance the flag of Dixie! 
        Hurrah! hurrah! 
For Dixie's land we 'll take our stand, 
    To live or die for Dixie!  10
        To arms! To arms! 
    And conquer peace for Dixie! 
        To arms! To arms! 
    And conquer peace for Dixie! 
  
Hear the Northern thunders mutter!  15
Northern flags in South winds flutter! 
Send them back your fierce defiance! 
Stamp upon the accursed alliance! 
  
Fear no danger! Shun no labor! 
Lift up rifle, pike, and sabre!  20
Shoulder pressing close to shoulder, 
Let the odds make each heart bolder! 
  
How the South's great heart rejoices 
At your cannons' ringing voices! 
For faith betrayed and pledges broken,  25
Wrongs inflicted, insults spoken. 
  
Strong as lions, swift as eagles, 
Back to their kennels hunt these beagles! 
Cut the unequal bonds asunder! 
Let them hence each other plunder!  30
  
Swear upon your Country's altar 
Never to submit or falter, 
Till the spoilers are defeated, 
Till the Lord's work is completed. 
  
Halt not till our Federation  35
Secures among earth's Powers its station! 
Then at peace, and crowned with glory, 
Hear your children tell the story! 
  
If the loved ones weep in sadness, 
Victory soon shall bring them gladness;  40
          To arms! 
Exultant pride soon banish sorrow, 
Smiles chase tears away to-morrow. 
  To arms! To arms! To arms, in Dixie! 
    Advance the flag of Dixie!  45
        Hurrah! hurrah! 
For Dixie's land we take our stand, 
    And live or die for Dixie! 
        To arms! To arms! 
    And conquer peace for Dixie!  50
        To arms! To arms! 
    And conquer peace for Dixie! 


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Subject: RE: Origins: Dixie
From: McGrath of Harlow
Date: 29 Oct 03 - 07:20 PM

From reading it, it seems pretty clear that it'd be the same tune - I'd guess it was an attempt to supply suitably formal and patriotic words to fit a tune that soldiers were already singing with less reverential words.

Rather the same way as happened in the case of John Brown's Body and the Battle Hymn of the Republic. ("To arms" suggest the author had been listening to the Marseillaise.)


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Subject: RE: Origins: Dixie
From: GUEST,Q
Date: 29 Oct 03 - 08:01 PM

(See I'm a guest again on IE. A member on Netscape).

The published title of the song is "The War Song of Dixie," words by Albert Pike and Music by J. C. Vierick (Opus 562), published 1861, by Werlein and Halsey, New Orleans, "inscribed to our gallant volunteers." A copy is available at American Memory.

Inside, the first page of music is headed "Southrons, Hear your country call you."

The chorus is not properly separated from the text of the six verses in the Yale Book of Verse:

Chorus:
Advance the flag of Dixie! Hurrah! Hurrah!
For Dixie's Land we'll take our stand
And live and die for Dixie.
To arms! To arms! And conquer peace for Dixie.
To arms! To arms! And conquer peace for Dixie


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Subject: RE: Origins: Dixie
From: GUEST,Q
Date: 29 Oct 03 - 08:04 PM

Eight verses, sorry.


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Subject: RE: Origins: Dixie
From: GUEST,Q
Date: 29 Oct 03 - 08:32 PM

Emmett's "In Dixie's Land" was printed by Firth, Pond and Co., New York, 1860. Since this was a song sung by Bryant's Minstrels, it may have been performed earlier.

We had a thread on this. Gargoyle found reference to the fact that the song was performed April 4, 1859, in NYC. Thread 54140: Origin of Dixie


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Subject: RE: Origins: Dixie
From: GUEST,Q
Date: 29 Oct 03 - 08:37 PM

Gee! That was this thread.


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Subject: RE: Origins: Dixie
From: Jon W.
Date: 30 Oct 03 - 01:48 AM

McGrath wrote: "("To arms" suggest the author had been listening to the Marseillaise.) "

From the liner notes of Keith & Rusty McNeil's CD Set "Civil War Songs (with historical narration)", on the song "Virginian Marseillaise": "The sheet music for the VIRGINIAN MARSEILLAISE included three versions: English, French, and Virginian. During the war, the MARSEILLAISE was so strongly identified with the Confederacy that a French theatrical group was arrested in New York for singing the MARSEILLAISE during their performance."


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Subject: RE: Origins: Dixie
From: Rex
Date: 30 Oct 03 - 12:58 PM

Albert Pike was a brigadier general in the Confederacy. He organized regiments of indians to fight along with the regulars. At Pea Ridge Union troops accused these indians of scalping dead and wounded soldiers and Pike was put to blame. This and other troubles led to his eventual resignation.

He was handy with lyrics and the above eight verses are credited to him. You'll find them in Irwin Silber's excellent work titled: "Songs of the Civil War". His words were applied to Emmett's Dixie in 1861 two years after the original minstrel version. It has also been published as "Everybody's Dixie".

Rex


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Subject: RE: Origins: Dixie
From: GUEST,AR282
Date: 30 Oct 03 - 01:47 PM

Maybe "dixie" was taken from George Washington Dixon, another blackface minstrel who invented the character called "Zip Coon." From what I gather, Zip Coon's theme song was what we now recognize as "Turkey in the Straw."

I should caution you, any real connection between Dixon and Dixie is just a shot in the dark on my part.


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Subject: RE: Origins: Dixie
From: McGrath of Harlow
Date: 30 Oct 03 - 03:17 PM

Here's a link I found to the sheet music of the "Virginian Marseillaise" (scroll down tye page a bit)


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Subject: RE: Origins: Dixie
From: Q (Frank Staplin)
Date: 30 Oct 03 - 03:56 PM

Sheet music of the "Virginian Marseillaise" can be found at American Memory. http://lcweb2.loc.gov/ammem/mdbquery.html and enter song name into search blank.
Search


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Subject: RE: Origins: Dixie
From: masato sakurai
Date: 30 Oct 03 - 06:22 PM

The link:

Virginian Marseillaise (Richmond; Columbia, Virginia; South Carolina, Geo. Dunn & Co.; J.A. Selby, 1863)


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Subject: Lyr. ADD: Awake! To Arms in Texas!
From: Q (Frank Staplin)
Date: 23 May 05 - 02:00 PM

Lyr. Add: Awake! To Arms in Texas!
Air- Dixie

Hear ye not the sound of battle,
Sabres clash and muskets rattle?
Awake, awake, awake in Texas!
Hostile footsteps on your border;
Hostile columns tread in order;
Awake, awake, awake in Texas!

Chorus:
O, fly to arms in Texas!
From Texas land we'll rout the band
That comes to conquer Texas-
Awake, awake! and rout the foe from Texas!

See the red smoke hanging o'er us;
Hear the cannons booming chorus;
Awake, awake, awake in Texas!
See our steady columns forming,
Hear the shouting- hear the storming;
Awake, awake, awake in Texas!

All the Northmen's forces coming;
Hark! the distant rapid drumming;
Awake, awake, awake in Texas!
Prouder ranks than theirs were driven,
When our Mexic ties were riven;
Awake, awake, awake in Texas!

Gird your loins with swords and sabre;
Give your lives to freedom's labor;
Awake, awake, awake in Texas!
What though ev'ry heart be sadden'd-
What though all the land be redden'd-
Awake, awake, awake in Texas!

Shall this boasting, mad invader,
Trample Texas and degrade her?
Awake, awake, awake in Texas!
By our fathers' proud example,
Texas soil they shall not trample;
Awake, awake, awake in Texas!

Texans! meet them on the border;
Charge them into wild disorder;
Awake, awake, awake in Texas!
Hew the vandals down before you,
Till the last inch they restore you;
Awake, awake, awake in Texas!

Through the echoing hills resounding,
Hear the Texas bugles sounding;
Awake, awake, awake in Texas!
Arouse from ev'ry hill and valley;
List the bugle! Rally! Rally!
Awake, awake, awake in Texas!

p. 8, no author listed.
Francis D. Allan, 1874, "Allan's Lone Star Ballads, A Collection of Southern Patriotic Songs Made During Confederate Times," 200pp. Burt Franklin, NY; reprint 1970, Lenox Hill (Burt Franklin): Resource and Source Works Series 578, American Classics in History and Social Science 153.
These southern patriotic songs were preserved through the persistance of Allan. During the War, the compiler published a pamphlet of Southern war songs under the title "Allan's Lone Star Ballads No. 1" as well as a number in sheets. The book was delayed through heavy losses, "the legimate result of the war, and which was followed by the wanton burning of all his property by Major G. W. Smith and the Federal Soldiers under his command, at the city of Brenham, in Texas, on the night of the seventh of September, 1866, long after the war was 'supposed' to be over, and from the effects of which he has never recovered."
Many songs were destroyed, but Allan re-gathered them, together with many he did not have before.
Although he admits that some are "unlettered effusions," he was influenced by a desire to 'preserve,.....a very important, but often neglected, portion of the history of those times that can never be forgotten."


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Subject: RE: Origins: Dixie
From: GUEST
Date: 05 Jun 05 - 04:37 PM

Sometimes the simplest explanation is the best, ie Dixie = Mason-Dixon land. If you object that they could equally have called it "Macy", that would have caused confusion with a well-known department store!


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Subject: RE: Origins: Dixie
From: Q (Frank Staplin)
Date: 05 Jun 05 - 08:09 PM

Trivia- Macy's was founded in 1858 by a former whaler.
Away up north in the land of Macy,
Let 'er blow, let 'er blow, let 'er blow...
No, I don't think that will make the hit parade.


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Subject: RE: Origins: Dixie
From: McGrath of Harlow
Date: 05 Jun 05 - 08:29 PM

Dixons could be quite confusing too. Though in a way it's surprising the company have never used it as an advertising jingle, so far as I know. Probably because while the tune is familar enough the words have never really registered over here.

Away down town I'm going out shopping
Where quality is not forgotten
Everyday!Everyday!
Everyday in Dixon's Store.

I wish I was in Dixons
Hooray! Hooray!
In Dixon's store I'll take my stand
So much to buy in Dixons,
Everyday!Everyday!
Everyday in Dixon's Store.


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Subject: RE: Origins: Dixie
From: GUEST
Date: 06 Jun 05 - 03:07 AM

Ammendment to the second verse:

I wish I was in Dixons
Hooray! Hooray!
In Dixon's store I'll rob a stand
So much to lift from Dixons,
Everyday! Everyday!
Everyday in Dixon's Store.


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Subject: Lyr. Add: Dixie's Land (Juvenile)
From: Q (Frank Staplin)
Date: 05 Nov 08 - 09:33 PM

Lyr. Add: DIXIE'S LAND
Dan. Emmett (by permission, Firth, Pond & Co.)

1
I wish I was in the land of childhood
Rambling there amid the wildwood,
Look away, look away, look away, Dixie Land.
In Dixie Land where I was born in,
Early on one frosty morning,
Look away! Look away! Look away! Dixie Land.
2
'Tis there we pass'd such merry hours,
Amid the forest leaves and flowers,
Look away, look away, look away, Dixie Land.
In May we chose our queen and crown'd her,
Boys and girls all gather'd round her,
Look away! Look away! Look away! Dixie Land.
3
O, gay the times we had together,
Cared we not the kind of weather,
Look away, look away, look away, Dixie Land.
'Twas always gay and pleasant there,
We saw no cloud, we knew no care,
Look away! Look away! Look away! Dixie Land.
4
So sing we now a song that's very
Gay and bright, and blithe and merry,
Look away, look away, look away, Dixie Land.
And should you wish to drive 'way sorrow,
Sing again this song tomorrow,
Look away! Look away! Look away! Dixie Land.

P. 200, with score, W. O. & H. S. Perkins, 1860, "The Nightingale; a Choice Collection of Songs, Chants and Hymns,
designed for the use of Juvenile Classes, Public Schools, and Seminaries; containing also a Complete and Concise System of Elementary Instruction." Boston, Published by Oliver Ditson & Co.

Note the date, 1860, indicating that very early the Emmett song was revised by publishers. Oliver Ditson & Co. published many songbooks of all kinds; in this case, they either borrowed this version from Firth, Pond, or obtained permission to publish a children's version which they had composed for them, probably by Emmett.


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Subject: RE: Origins: Dixie
From: McGrath of Harlow
Date: 06 Nov 08 - 08:58 PM

That's rather sweet.   It's a pity that the lines "O, gay the times we had together" and "'Twas always gay and pleasant there" would be greeted by sniggers these days.


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Subject: RE: Origins: Dixie
From: Q (Frank Staplin)
Date: 06 Nov 08 - 11:12 PM

Gay appears in many 19th c. songs. It is indeed unfortunate that slang usage has upset the meaning of this word, and a number of others as well.


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Subject: RE: Origins: Dixie
From: Desert Dancer
Date: 02 Apr 12 - 09:17 PM

In the New York Times series "Disunion", on the Civil War, Christian McWhirter ('an assistant editor for The Papers of Abraham Lincoln and the author of "Battle Hymns: The Power and Popularity of Music in the Civil War"') gives a history of the song's adoption as an anthem of the South. (No mention of Hays.)

The Birth of 'Dixie'

Christian McWhirter
New York Times
March 31, 2012

In a New York apartment on a rainy day in March 1859, Daniel Decatur Emmett sat down at his desk to write a song for his employer, Bryant's Minstrels, and its upcoming stage show. Then 44 years old, Emmett had been composing minstrel songs — to be performed primarily by white actors in blackface — since he was 15. Looking out his window at the dreary day outside, Emmett took his inspiration from the weather. A single line, "I wish I was in Dixie," echoed in his mind. Before long, it would echo across the country.

Few of us remember "Dixie" as antebellum America's last great minstrel song. We see it as most did two years after its creation — as the anthem of the Confederacy. And yet as phenomenally popular as it was the North before the war, "Dixie" was slow to catch on in the South. Lacking the Yankees' enthusiasm for minstrelsy, most Southerners were unaware of the tune until late 1860. By sheer chance of fate, its arrival coincided with the outbreak of secession. As newly minted Confederates rejected the anthems of their old nation, they desperately sought replacements.

Indeed, once it reached the South, "Dixie," despite being a song written by a Northerner, rose to prominence with exceptional speed. One songwriter recalled how it "spontaneously" became the Confederacy's anthem, and a British correspondent noted the "wild-fire rapidity" of its "spread over the whole South." The tune received an unofficial endorsement when it was played at Confederate President Jefferson Davis's inauguration in February 1861. This was coincidental — it was recommended to a Montgomery, Ala., bandleader who knew nothing of the tune — but "Dixie's" inclusion gave the appearance of presidential approval. The Confederate government never formally endorsed "Dixie," though Davis did own a music box that played the song and is rumored to have favored it as the South's anthem.

Repeated performances of "Dixie" by Confederates confirmed its new status. Even before Virginia seceded, the Richmond Dispatch labeled "Dixie" the "National Anthem of Secession," and the New York Times concurred a few months later, observing that the tune "has been the inspiring melody which the Southern people, by general consent, have adopted as their 'national air.'" Publishers recorded that sales were "altogether unprecedented" and, when Robert E. Lee sought a copy for his wife in the summer of 1861, he found none were left in all of Virginia.

"Dixie" became so connected so quickly with the South that many Americans attributed its very name to the region. In fact, the precise origin of the word "Dixie" remains unknown, though three competing theories persist. It either references a benevolent slaveholder named Dix (thus slaves wanting to return to "Dix's Land"), Louisiana (where $10 notes were sometimes called Dix notes), or — and most likely — the land below the Mason and Dixon's line (the slaveholding South). Regardless, Emmett's tune made it part of the national vocabulary. During the Civil War, soldiers, civilians and slaves frequently referred to the South as Dixie and considered Emmett's ditty the region's anthem.

This popularity is remarkable, as little about "Dixie" recommends it as a national anthem. The melody lacks gravitas, and only the first verse and chorus express anything approximating Southern nationalism:

    I Wish I was in de land ob cotton,
    Old times dar am not forgotten
    Look away! look away! look away! Dixie Land.
    In Dixie Land whar I was born in,
    Early on one frosty mornin',
    Look away! look away! look away! Dixie Land.

    Den I wish I was in Dixie,
    Hooray! hooray!
    In Dixie Land I'll take my stand,
    To lib and die in Dixie,
    Away, away, away down south in Dixie,
    Away, away, away down south in Dixie.

The rest is unmistakably the work of a songwriter utilizing various minstrel clichés. "Dixie's" speaker is a slave who worries that his plantation mistress is being seduced into marrying "Will de Weaber," the "gay deceiber" who outlives her and inherits her plantation. Although the speaker expresses his desire to live in the South until he dies, the song provides little else to endear it to Confederate patriots.

Nevertheless, a sort of inertia pushed the song's reputation higher and higher in the Southern mind. Confederates performed "Dixie" enthusiastically and remained devoted to it even when an alternative anthem — Harry Macarthy's "Bonnie Blue Flag" — became available. The more Americans on both sides believed that "Dixie" was the Confederate anthem, the more it became so. This was especially true for soldiers, who were some of the first to embrace "Dixie" and increasingly associated it, amazingly, with sacrifices made for the war. For one Confederate surgeon, the song "brings to mind the memory of friends who loved it — friends, the light of whose lives were extinguished in blood, whose spirit were quenched in violence."

To be sure, many Southerners were well aware of "Dixie's" obvious deficiencies. Most simply ignored these problems, though some tried to reconcile them with the Confederacy's history and objectives. The Richmond Dispatch stretched its credibility attempting to prove that the song was a parable for secession. It argued that "Will de Weaber" was not a minstrel stereotype but, in fact, Abraham Lincoln, who seduced the nation into voting for him, leading to the South's rebirth as the Confederacy. To conclude the piece, the author triumphantly asked, "Can any one now fail to see that, in the verses of this deservedly popular song, an epitome is given of the events which, since last November, have shaken this land?" Emmett surely disagreed, as he reportedly declared that, had he known the Confederates would adopt "Dixie" as their anthem, "I will be damned if I'd have written it."

Other Southerners were more disturbed by "Dixie's" apparently undeserved status and sought more extreme solutions. Many rejected it outright. "It smells too strongly of the [negro] to assume a dignified rank of the National Song" declared one malcontent, while another argued it was "absurd to imagine that Dixie, a dancing; capering, rowdyish, bacchanalian negro air" could be sung by "a nation of free men … with any respect for themselves." Others recognized that most of the song's appeal came from its catchy melody and simply drafted new lyrics. Numerous such revisions appeared throughout the war but none achieved much success. Only one, by the Confederate Indian agent and general Albert Pike, enjoyed even a limited popularity and continues to appear occasionally in histories, songbooks and public performances.

Even Lincoln recognized the song's power and, at the end of the war, attempted to reclaim "Dixie" as an American, rather than Confederate, song. "Our adversaries over the way attempted to appropriate it, but I insisted," he told a crowd of admirers in Washington, "that we fairly captured it."

Despite these efforts and the continued protestations of some Southerners, "Dixie" remained wedded to its Confederate identity. Although a simple minstrel ditty, 150 years of history have loaded the song with indelible political, racial, military and social connotations. For better or for worse, "Dixie" was the South's anthem, and will most likely remain so for generations.

Sources: Daniel Decatur Emmett, "Away Down South in Dixie," New York Clipper, April 6, 1872; Richard B. Harwell, "The Confederate Search for a National Song," Lincoln Herald, February 1950; "Three Months in the Confederate Army," Index, June 26, 1862; "Dixie Composer, On Visit to Birmingham, Tells How Famous War Song Was Written," Birmingham News, Nov. 2, 1924; "Quite a Novelty," Petersburg Daily Express, May 4, 1865; "The Enigma Solved," Richmond Dispatch, March 25 and May 11, 1861; "Songs for the South," New York Times, June 16, 1861; Robert E. Lee Jr., "Recollections and Letters of General Robert E. Lee"; Hans Nathan, "Dan Emmett and the Rise of Early Negro Minstrelsy"; Daniel Decatur Emmett, "I Wish I Was in Dixie's Land"; Junius Newport Bragg and Helen Bragg Gaughan, "Letters of a Confederate Surgeon, 1861-65″; T. C. De Leon, "Belles, Beaux, and Brains of the 60's"; Albert Pike and J. C. Vierick, "The War Song of Dixie"; Abraham Lincoln, "Response to Serenade," April 10, 1865.


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Subject: RE: Origins: Dixie
From: GUEST,Lighter
Date: 03 Apr 12 - 09:50 AM

The first stanza and the chorus, with the minstrel dialect removed, may lack the gravitas of a national anthem but is entirely in the mainstream of 19th century pop song - and a lot less maudlin than most.

My impression is that those were the only parts of the song generally sung. And the tune was generally played without reference to the lyrics.

Voila: a catchy, sentimental, ditty for white Southerners.


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Subject: RE: Origins: Dixie
From: Q (Frank Staplin)
Date: 03 Apr 12 - 03:00 PM

Catchy and sentimental, referring to their "land of birth," a sentiment that white southerners could understand. And still popular with them well into the 20th C.

One statement in the McWhirter article is incorrect- "Lacking the Yankees enthusiasm for minstrelsy....." Minstrel groups toured in the south and performed in Baltimore, New Orleans and other southern cities, tailoring their songs and comedy for a local audience, before 1860. Steamboat minstrels performed in the 1850s.


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Subject: RE: Origins: Dixie
From: Gibb Sahib
Date: 01 Jul 12 - 04:01 PM

I know a lot has been said here, some thoughtful debate. I've skimmed it, but not read in detail. I've also skimmed Nathan's article. Anyway, without wanting to repeat something that has already been discussed: Has anyone heard about a claim that Emmett got the song from cotton loading stevedores in Mobile? If not, I'll post a source.


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Subject: RE: Origins: Dixie
From: GUEST,Lighter
Date: 01 Jul 12 - 04:18 PM

I have not. The only anti-Emmett theory I know is the one set forth in "Way Up North in Dixie" that he got the song/idea from African-American neighbors in Ohio.

Discussed (and rejected by me) a number of years ago, possibly on this very thread.


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Subject: RE: Origins: Dixie
From: Gibb Sahib
Date: 01 Jul 12 - 04:49 PM

Well, I don't have depth of knowledge to really judge the veracity of the claim, but if anything it is at least an interesting anecdote. It interests me personally, not because it necessarily proves anything about "Dixie," but because it adds to the idea that some minstrel songs were known or at least *believed* to be derived from Black worksongs--in the 1860s.

1869. ["Editorial Miscellany."] _Scott's Monthly Magazine_ 7(6): 478.

//
The Memphis Post gives the following as the origin of the now nationalized air of "Dixie:"

"In the first place, the song and chorus of 'Dixie,' was composed and arranged by Dan. Emmet, a member of a traveling minstrel party, who, while at Mobile in the winter of 1847-8, heard some negro laborers singing on the levee while loading a steamboat with cotton. The thought struck Dan. that, with a little change of measure, it could be made a good song 'walk around,' which generally winds up a negro minstrel concert. Dan. arranged it and produced it. It became a success, and was sung aud played all over the country by all the bands.

"In the spring of 1861, Mrs. John Wood came to New Orleans to play an engagement at the Varieties Theater. During the time, she appeared in Brougham's burlesque of Pocahontas. At the first rehearsal ot the piece everything went well till near the close of the second act; Tom McDonough (now agent for the Lefflngwell), the prompter, got up a Zouave march and drill by 22 ladies, led by Susan Deniu. Everything run smooth' but the music for the march could not be fixed upon. Carlo Patti was leader of the orchestra and he tried several marches, but none suited McDonough—one was too slow, another was too tame, another not enough spirit. At length Patti struck up the negro air of ' Dixie.' 'That will do, Patti—the very thing,' said Tom, and 'Dixie' was played, and the march gone through with, and the chorus by all the characters. At night it received a double encore, and Pocahontas had a 'run,' and from that time out the streets and parlors rang with 'Dixie.' The war broke out that spring, and the military bands took it up, and 'Dixie' became to the South what the Marseillaise Hyms was to the French. And that's how 'Dixie' became the popular war song of the South."
//


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