Familiar Songs - Their Authors & Histories

300 traditional songs, inc sheet music with full piano accompaniment & lyrics.

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Political Songs,
The famous campaign song of " Tippecanoe and Tyler too" was written by Alex­ander Coffman Ross. In the Zanesville Daily Courier, of June 7, 1873, in one of a series of articles on " The Boys of 1825," Judge Sherwood, of Zanesville, gives the follow­ing particulars of the origin of the song.
The great political storm that swept over the country in 1840, was one of the most remarkable events ever known in the history of our government. The Whig campaign, which carried Harrison, the hero of Tippecanoe, and Tyler into the presidential chairs, began as early as February. Business generally was at a stand-still; the currency was in such a confused state that specie to pay postage was almost beyond reach; banks had been in a state of supension for a long time; mechanics and laboring men were out of employment or working for 62|, 75, or 87£ cents a day, payable in "orders on the store"; market money could be obtained with difficulty, and things generally had reached so low an ebb as to make any change seem desirable. As the Whigs promised " two dollars a day and roast beef" to laborers, working men were inclined to trust them.
On the 22d of February, Columbus was filled with a mighty throng of people. The rain came down in torrents, the streets were one vast sheet of mud, but the crowds p;ii<l no heed to the elements. A full-rigged ship on wheels, canoes, log-cabins, with inmates feasting on corn-pone and hard cider, miniature forts, flags, banners, drums and fifes, bands of music, live coons, roosters crowing, and shouting men by the ten thousand, made a scene of attraction, confusion, and excitement such as has never been equalled. Stands were erected, and orators went to work; but the staid party-leaders failed to hit the key­note. Itinerant speakers mounted store-boxes, and blazed away. It was made known that the Cleveland delegation, on their route to the city, had had the wheels stolen from some of their wagons by Loco-focos, and were compelled to continue their journey on foot. One of these enforced foot-passengers was something of a poet, and wrote a song descrip­tive of " up Salt River," and was encored over and over again. On the spur of the moment, many songs were written and sung, the pent-up enthusiasm had found vent; but the song of the campaign had not yet been written. On the return of our delegation, a Tippecanoe club was formed, and a glee club organized, of whom Ross was one. The club meetings were opened and closed with singing by the glee club. Billy McKibbon wrote " Amos peddling yokes," to be sung to the tune of u Yip, fal, lal," which proved very