[EARLY AMERICAN SHEET MUSIC]. HOOK, James (1746-1827); SANDERSON, James (1769-1841); SHIELD, William (1748-1829)
Ten Songs Printed in Philadelphia and Owned by the Family of Francis Hopkinson.
Philadelphia: George E. Blake; Benjamin Carr and Co. at the Musical Repository, 136 High Street; George Willig at 12 South 4th Street, c.1795-1810. Folio Sheet Music. ff. 15, pp. 30. Sheets: (13 1/4 x 8 1/4 inches). Plate marks: (10 3/4 x 7 3/4 inches). 4 single page and 6 bi-fold pieces of copper-plate engraved sheet music. Several of the sheets are hand-foliated in ink. Sheet size: (13 1/4 x 8 1/4 inches). Plate mark: (10 3/4 x 7 3/4 inches).
Provenance: Founding Father Francis Hopkinson's family
A selection of ten pieces of early American sheet music from the family of Francis Hopkinson, America's first composer, printed by the foremost early American music publishers in Philadelphia.
"I cannot, I believe, be refused the Credit of being the first Native of the United States who has produced a Musical Composition." - Francis Hopkinson Founding Father Francis Hopkinson (1737-1791) was a signatory for New Jersey to the Declaration of Independence and the first American to compose a song. Hopkinson published three of the earliest American song collections: Collection of Plain Tunes with a Few from Anthems and Hymns, printed by Carr in 1763; America Independent, or Temple of Minerva (the first American opera), printed by Carr in 1781; and Seven Songs for the Harpsichord or Forte Piano, printed by T. Dobson in 1788. There are eight songs herein with Philadelphia explicitly stated as place of publication. There are two other songs from the same grouping that were clearly published by George Willig of Philadelphia, but without attribution. The titles and printers of the ten songs are: George E. Blake (Active 1803-1850): "SANDY & JENNY. A favorite Scotch Ballad." Benjamin Carr & Co., at their Musical Repository (Active 1793-1830): "Whither, My Love - a Favourite SONG in The HAUNTED TOWER," "The Match Girl: A FAVORITE SONG Composed by A LADY," "Pauvre Madelon: A Favorite DIALOGUE and DUETT in The Surrender of Calais," "Sweet Lillies of the Valley: Sung with Great Applause at VAUXHALL GARDENS," "Rise Cynthia Rise: A Favorite SONNET Written by the EARL of ORFORD," and "The Heaving of the Lead: A Favorite Sea Song." George Willig, Sold at his Musical Magazine (Active 1794-1840): "THE STREAMLET: A FAVORITE NEW SONG IN THE WOODMAN," "THE REQUEST," and "THE DOWNFALL OF PARIS." The one song printed by Blake and the three by Willig are single sheets, while the six Carr scores are bi-folds. The Willig one-sheet for "THE DOWNFALL OF PARIS" is glued onto a page of sheet music titled "HE PIP'D SO SWEET. A Favorite NEW SONG Compos'd by Mr. HOOK. Dublin. Published by HIME MUSIC SELLER (34) COLLEGE GREEN." This sheet music was part of a Sammelband acquired at the Francis Hopkinson Family Americana Collection sale in June 2020.
Wolfe, Early American Music Engraving and Printing, 1980.