[Newport, R.I. ca. 1821-50]. pp. More than 160 distinct compositions. Quarto. Half burgundy morocco with gilt burgundy label ("Julia S.M. Hazard") on front board. Boards heavily worn, corners bumped, some loss of spine leather, text block mostly detached and loose. Pages trimmed with only a few minor losses to text. A few pages with chipping at the edge, some light tanning, a few fingerprints, and some bleedthrough from ink, but internally very good over all. Item #WRCAM55384
A remarkable collection of manuscript music, including transcriptions, arrangements, and compositions from the hands of both noted composer Oliver Shaw and his student, Julia Hazard. Oliver Shaw was the first prominent American composer and songwriter, and Julia Hazard - child of a noted Rhode Island political family - was only in her mid- teenage years when she began to create this volume. This collection of manuscript music is an important record of early music education in the United States, of the achievements of a talented young female musician, and of the interpretation of popular American songs of the day. In all, there are more than 160 distinct manuscript musical works in this volume, several with political or historical themes. Some pieces are excerpts, but many are complete compositions, often with lyrics and occasional notes on performance. Most of the pieces date to the 1820s and 1830s, though one is dated as late as 1850. One of the most interesting pieces is a very early rendition of "The Star-Spangled Banner" in Julia Hazard's hand. Francis Scott Key wrote the poem "The Defense of Fort McHenry" in 1814, only seven years earlier during the War of 1812; it was an instant hit as a poem and was immediately retitled "The Star- Spangled Banner." It was soon associated with the music we now know, "To Anacreon in Heaven," and this may have been due to some influence from Key, who had used the music in 1805 to accompany another poem he wrote to honor Commodore Stephen Decatur (the music was very popular at the time). "The Star- Spangled Banner" did not become the national anthem until 1931; before this, it was one of several popular patriotic songs, along with "Hail, Columbia"; "My Country, 'Tis of Thee"; and finally "America the Beautiful," which had also been considered for the national anthem. Nevertheless, people throughout the 19th-century appropriated the music and the text of the "Star-Spangled Banner" for their own ends, including abolitionists: "Oh, say do you hear, at the dawn's early light, The shrieks of those bondmen, whose blood is now streaming", and temperance activists: "Oh! who has not seen by the dawn's early light, Some poor bloated drunkard to his home weakly reeling" (as noted by Robin). Julia Hazard clearly felt free to take extensive liberties with the music of the Star Spangled Banner - only occasional strains are recognizable. She also made some changes to the poem, repeating "O'er the ramparts we watch'd where [sic] so gallantly streaming..." (substituting "where" for "were" - a possible misspelling), and also repeating the final line, "O'er the land of the free and the home of the brave." Hazard includes the second verse with no alterations. Many other patriotic compositions are present, including "General Washington's March"; a short and slightly different "Yankee Doodle"; "A New Ode Sung at the Celebration of the Anniversary of American Independence. Boston, July 4th 1802"; John George Henry Jay's "Jefferson's March"; "Bristol March - Jefferson and Liberty"; "Hull's March"; and a composition dated 1850 called "Field of Monterey," showing that even after Oliver Shaw's death in 1848, Julia Hazard continued to work on her musicianship. Oliver Shaw's compositions "Governor Jones' [of Rhode Island] March" and "Bristol March" are included, but perhaps the most important work here is "A Military Divertimento...Dedicated to Genl. La Fayette on his visit to Providence" (published by Shaw as WELCOME THE NATION'S GUEST...). During 1824-25, the Marquis de Lafayette returned to America in anticipation of the fiftieth anniversary of independence. He toured all twenty-four states of the Union, visiting the northern and eastern states in the fall of 1824, with stops at Monticello to visit Jefferson and then Washington, where he was received at the White House by President Monroe. From August 21-24, he travelled through New Haven and Old Saybrook, Providence, Stoughton, and finally Boston. These visits inspired several dedicatory compositions like Shaw's. While there is not evidence that Shaw's piece was performed during Lafayette's visit, there are detailed performance notes, marking the places in the music when Lafayette arrives in town, when he is received at the state house, and when he departs. Either way, the work was well- received at the time, has been regularly reprinted and included in anthologies of 19th- century keyboard compositions, and is still performed today. The remaining pieces are overwhelmingly popular operas, ballad operas, and traditional Irish and Scottish songs, including "The Favorite Overture to the Blind Boy" by John Davy; "Fancy's Vision" by Arthur F. Keene; an arrangement of Thomas Moore's "The Meeting of the Waters"; Charles Jefferys and Sidney Nelson's "The Rose of Allendale"; and excerpts from "Lalla Rookh." Despite Shaw's training, but perhaps because of Hazard's interests, there are few classical pieces; only Daniel Steibelt's ballet "Le Retour du [sic] Zephir" and "Life Let Us Cherish" with variations by Mozart are notable. It should be noted that the dates of this manuscript overlap with the lifetimes of classical composers we now regard as some of the most important in Western music: Beethoven (d.1827), Schubert (d.1828), and Rossini (d.1868) were all alive and composing at this time, and Haydn had just died in 1809. Oliver Shaw (1779-1848), the first prominent American composer and songwriter, was born in Middleborough, Massachusetts. As an adult, Shaw was blind: an accident with a penknife in early childhood blinded him in his right eye, and then a fever combined with eyestrain led to the loss of sight in his left eye by the time his was twenty-one. However this did not seem to hold him back. He began his formal musical education in 1800, primarily with organist John L. Birkenhead in Newport, Rhode Island, and the better-known composer, conductor, and publisher Gottlieb Graupner in Boston. Born in Germany, Graupner performed in Haydn's orchestra in London, and once in the U.S., taught and conducted, and founded the Handel and Haydn Society, the third oldest musical organization in America (with which Shaw occasionally performed). Shaw moved to Providence in 1807, where he worked as a as a composer, publisher, teacher, church organist (of the First Congregational Church of Providence), and tenor soloist; and as an organizer and leader of musical societies. He published more than seventy songs and over thirty instrumental works. One of Shaw's more prominent students was Lowell Mason (1792-1872), a leading figure in American church music. Mason is perhaps best known for his now-ubiquitous arrangement of "Joy to the World," but in his lifetime composed and arranged about 1,700 hymn tunes, including "Bethany" (for "Nearer, My God, to Thee"), "Olivet" ("My Faith Looks Up to Thee"), and "Hamburg" ("When I Survey the Wondrous Cross"). Mason is largely credited with introducing music into American public schools, and is considered the first important U.S. music educator. Julia Sophia Hazard (1806-78) was born in Middletown, Rhode Island, the granddaughter of George Hazard (1724-97), who served as mayor of Newport and was a Newport representative to the state convention to consider the new national constitution. Julia married Abiel Sherman in 1828. There is no record of Julia pursuing a professional life in music, however, Shaw's wife and family frequently performed with him, so it would not be unusual for his students to do likewise. A fascinating overview of a music student adapting and enhancing the "hits" of the day with the guidance of America's first great composer. This is also quite uncommon: we could find no instances of Oliver Shaw's or Julia Hazard's manuscripts for sale or at auction, and no major institutional holdings of Shaw's manuscript compositions. Caroline E. Robinson, THE HAZARD FAMILY OF RHODE ISLAND 1635-1894: BEING A GENEALOGY AND HISTORY OF THE DESCENDENTS OF THOMAS HAZARD... (Boston: Printed for the Author, 1895). William Robin, "How the National Anthem Has Unfurled" in NEW YORK TIMES (June 27, 2014).