Slave Songs of the United States

Slave Songs of the United States was published in 1867 by A. Simpson & Co., New York. It was the first extensive collection of the foundational folk song genre of enslaved and free African Americans, the spiritual (see African American spiritual*).   Slave Songs contains melodies and lyrics of 136 spirituals, collected from African American communities and singers in twelve states and grouped according to United States geographic region. The northern abolitionist editors of Slave Songs, William Francis Allen (1830-1889), his younger cousin Charles Pickard Ware (1840-1921) and Lucy McKim Garrison (1842-1877), the only professional musician in the group, collaborated to collect and...

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