With the original Hutchinson family. “Tribes of John and Jesse”
The protest song has a long history in the American experience and interestingly enough a collection of Revolutionary songs has the following quotation on its title page, More solid things do not shew the complexion of the Times so well, as Ballads and Libels… Belden. In this particular case the term libel is used in its archaic meaning of, a handbill especially attacking or defaming someone, but the same idea of the defamation of a person is contained in both the archaic and modern meaning of the term. There is an old axiom to the point that you may have all of the facts but if the other fellow has all of the songs you have lost and if you consider the relative positions of the Battle Hymn of the Republic and Dixie in today’s society you should need no further demonstration of this truth. This book is about the winning songs without asking any probing questions about them.
Miss Jenniebelle Neal, dramatic reader and pianist with the Hutchinson Family
Singing for freedom: the Hutchinson Family Singers and the nineteenth-century culture of reform New Haven: Yale University Press, c 2007 Scott Gac Antislavery movements United States History 19th century Hardcover. 1st. ed. and printing. xi, 312 p.: ill.; 25 cm. Includes bibliographical references (p. 257-299) and index. Clean, tight and strong binding with clean dust jacket. No highlighting, underlining or marginalia in text. VG/VG
The Hutchinson Family tribes of John and Jesse
In the two decades prior to the Civil War, the Hutchinson Family Singers of New Hampshire became America’s most popular musical act. Out of a Baptist revival upbringing, John, Asa, Judson, and Abby Hutchinson transformed themselves in the 1840s into national icons, taking up the reform issues of their age and singing out especially for temperance and antislavery reform. This engaging book is the first to tell the full story of the Hutchinsons, how they contributed to the transformation of American culture, and how they originated the marketable American protest song.
An illustrated sheet music cover for an abolitionist song composed by Jesse Hutchinson, Jr. The song is dedicated to antislavery editor Nathaniel Peabody Rogers, “As a mark of esteem for his intrepidity in the cause of Human Rights.” It is illustrated with an allegory of the triumph of abolitionism. In a landscape a railroad car, “Immediate Emancipation,” is drawn by a locomotive named “Liberator” and followed by another locomotive, the “Repealer,” which pulls a second car “Liberty Votes and Ballot Boxes.” The “Liberator” was the name of a prominent antislavery newspaper published in Boston by William Lloyd Garrison. “Repealer” probably refers to the Irish insurgent movement in support of the repeal of the Legislative Union, a cause with which many abolitionists in the United States were allied. Flags bearing the names of two other abolitionist publications, the “Herald of Freedom” and “American Standard” (i.e., Rogers’s” National Anti-slavery Standard), fly from the “Emancipation” car. The trains approach a bend in the track, nearing a station where a number of people gather to welcome them. Beyond the station is a church. In the distance two other trains, one marked “Van” and the other “Clay,” crash and their passengers flee. These allude to Democrat and Whig presidential hopefuls Martin Van Buren and Henry Clay. The reference to Van Buren suggests that the music-sheet appeared before the Democratic convention in May, when James K. Polk, not Van Buren, received the party’s presidential nomination.
Through concerts, writings, sheet music publications, and books of lyrics, the Hutchinson Family Singers established a new space for civic action, a place at the intersection of culture, reform, religion, and politics. The book documents the Hutchinsons’ impact on abolition and other reform projects and offers an original conception of the rising importance of popular culture in antebellum America.
A sheet music cover illustrated with a portrait of prominent black abolitionist Frederick Douglass as a runaway slave. Douglass flees barefoot from two mounted pursuers who appear across the river behind him with their pack of dogs. Ahead, to the right, a signpost points toward New England. The cover’s text states that “The Fugitive’s Song” was “composed and respectfully dedicated, in token of confident esteem to Frederick Douglass. A graduate from the peculiar institution. For his fearless advocacy, signal ability and wonderful success in behalf of his brothers in bonds. (and to the fugitives from slavery in the) free states & Canadas by their friend Jesse Hutchinson Junr.” As the illustration suggests, Douglass himself had escaped from slavery, fleeing in 1838 from Maryland to Massachusetts.