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Cover from sheet music for 'Why Adam sinned' - words and music by Alex Rogers

[Detail] Why Adam sinned / words and music by Alex Rogers


Collection Overview

African-American Sheet Music contains 1,305 pieces of music. The collection includes minstrel songs and songs about the abolitionist movement as well as music about the novel Uncle Tom's Cabin, African-American soldiers in the Civil War, emancipated slaves, Reconstruction, and the northern migration of African Americans. The sheet music lyrics, illustrations, and photographs show changing racial attitudes in the 19th and early 20th centuries. Popular composers in the collection include James Bland, Ernest Hogan, Bob Cole, James Reese Europe, and Will Marion Cook.

Special Features

These online exhibits provide context and additional information about this collection.

Historical Eras

These historical era(s) are best represented in the collection, although they may not be all-encompassing.

  • The Civil War and Reconstruction, 1850-1877
  • Development of the Industrial United States, 1876-1915
  • Emergence of Modern America, 1890-1930

Related Collections and Exhibits

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Other Resources

Recommended additional sources of information.

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