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The National Music of America. 211
melodies and setting American subjects to them. One example may serve to show the rough but effective character of the entire school, — the song which celebrates the combat between the Constitutional the GuerrUre.
The captains of these two vessels were acquainted with each other and had often bragged of their ships when they met at the London clubs. So strong had this rivalry become that on one occasion a wager of a new hat was made on the result should they ever have a chance to sail against each other. Now, however, the merits of the two vessels were to be tried in grim earnest. Once before the great battle, the two ships had fallen in with each other, off the New England coast.
On the seventeenth of July, 1812, Captain Isaac Hull, in command of the Constitution, was sailing northward from Chesapeake Bay, when he fell in with a British vessel which proved to be the Guerriere, Captain James