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The National Music of America. 51
in 1779, on the first Sunday that the choir displayed its abilities.
" After the hymn had been read by the minister, the aged and venerable Deacon Chamberlain, unwilling to desert the custom of his fathers, rose and read the first line according to the usual practice. The singers, prepared to carry the alteration into effect, proceeded without pausing at the conclusion. The white-haired officer of the church with the full power of his voice read on, until the louder notes of the collected body overpowered the attempt to resist the progress of improvement, and the deacon, deeply mortified at the triumph of musical reformation, seized his hat and retired from the Meeting house in tears." (" History of Worcester.")
In the last half of the eighteenth century, because of the victory of the choirs and singing-schools, books of music began to follow each other with great profusion. Newburyport, Northampton, Worcester, and Boston, all sent forth their various musical collections. "The American Harmony," "The Gentleman and Ladies Musical Companion," "The Psalm-singer's Amusement,"