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Music of the Civil War: Dixie (Dixie's Land, I wish I was in Dixie land)

Discussion in 'Civil War History - General Discussion' started by Samuel.Sohm, May 25, 2013.

  1. Samuel.Sohm

    Samuel.Sohm First Sergeant

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    Dixie (Dixie's Land, I wish I was in Dixie Land), Written by Daniel Decatur Emmet in 1859
    [​IMG]
    Written by Daniel Decatur Emmet, an Ohio native, around 1859 it was used by a Minstrel troop as their "Walkaround" song and became widely popular. When the secession crisis tore the United States apart, the Confederate States adopted the song as a sort of unofficial anthem and the song was popular among both sides of the conflict, with lyrics being changed to fit the occasion several times.

    The end of the war did not signal the end of Dixie. Its association with minstrel shows and its wide acceptance before the war ensured its continued existence in the tumultuous reconstruction era. It was not until the Civil Rights movement became popular in the 1960s that Dixie was labeled as a racist relic and fell upon the hard times. Regardless of how it is perceived with certain regional or ethnic groups it is iconic in the history of the US and is also accepted by other countries as representing the country as a whole (it was even used recently on a World War 1 documentary made in Britain as the "American" background music). To hear the U.S. Army band version of Dixie see below (Lyrics are also included from the Civil War Trust):


    To read more about this song see below:
    http://www.civilwar.org/education/history/on-the-homefront/culture/music/dixie/dixie.html
    http://www.civilwarpoetry.org/confederate/songs/dixie.html
    http://www.tulane.edu/~sumter/Dixie.html
     

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  3. jgoodguy

    jgoodguy Brigadier General Moderator Forum Host

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  4. donna

    donna Brev. Brig. Gen'l Forum Host

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    Another thread on song, Dixie.
     
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  5. connecticut yankee

    connecticut yankee Private

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    Dixie was Abraham Lincoln's favorite song...
     
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  6. J. Horace

    J. Horace Corporal

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    Love me some "Dixie." We still sing it at family gatherings.
     
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  7. KansasFreestater

    KansasFreestater 1st Lieutenant

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    Whoa! Dixie's land was on LonGG Island, @Pat Young! Know anything about that? Maybe you and Michele could go find it and do a photo thread for us....
     
    Last edited: Oct 11, 2017 at 1:49 PM
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  8. KansasFreestater

    KansasFreestater 1st Lieutenant

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    Here's Tennessee Ernie Ford singing the Union version of Dixie:



    Away down South in the land of traitors,
    Rattlesnakes and alligators,
    Right away, come away, right away, come away.
    Where cotton's king and men are chattels,
    Union boys will win the battles,
    Right away, come away, right away, come away.

    REFRAIN:
    We'll all go down to Dixie,
    Away, away,
    Each Dixie boy must understand
    That he must mind his Uncle Sam,
    Away, away,
    we'll all go down to Dixie.
    Away, away,
    we'll all go down to Dixie.

    I wish I was in Baltimore,
    I'd make Secession traitors roar,
    Right away, come away, right away, come away.
    We'll put the traitors all to rout.
    I'll bet my boots we'll whip them out,
    Right away, come away, right away, come away.

    Oh, may our Stars and Stripes still wave
    Forever o'er the free and brave,
    Right away, come away, right away, come away.
    And let our motto ever be --
    "For Union and for Liberty!"
    Right away, come away, right away, come away.
     
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  9. JOHN42768

    JOHN42768 2nd Lieutenant Trivia Game Winner

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    Ernie Ford was a great entertainer
     
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  10. Pat Young

    Pat Young Brev. Brig. Gen'l Forum Host Featured Book Reviewer

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    I did not.
     
  11. Republican Blues

    Republican Blues 2nd Lieutenant

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    From the same guy (Ripley) that said Taps was found on a Confederate bugler.... in the realm of believe it or not... I choose Not
     
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  12. CW Watch Collector

    CW Watch Collector First Sergeant

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    As already mentioned as a possibility, the story I read about the origin of the term "Dixie" (can't remember where) is that regional bank notes were widely circulated before the Civil War, and notes from the Bank of New Orleans, a very prominent regional bank, were especially popular throughout the South. That bank's notes were denominated in French as well as English, and their especially popular ten dollar notes, which proclaimed "Dix" in big letters, became popularly known as "Dixie notes." By extension, the region in which these notes circulated came to be known as "Dixie Land."

    To me, the above explanation of the origin of the term "Dixie" seems a lot more likely than one involving a farm on Long Island.

    By the way, I play Dixie on my banjo and it is a really great tune. It is my favorite tune to pick in double-C tuning.
     
    Last edited: Oct 11, 2017 at 5:30 PM
  13. 8thFlorida

    8thFlorida Corporal

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    In Dixie's Land I'll take my stand- to live and die in Dixie
    n
     
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  14. AndyHall

    AndyHall Colonel Forum Host

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  15. chellers

    chellers Brigadier General Moderator Trivia Game Winner

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    One of the most beautiful and poignant arrangements I have ever heard of "Dixie."
    Thanks for sharing, @AndyHall.
     
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  16. mofederal

    mofederal Sergeant Major

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    It is a great song, and very popular during the war, probably on both sides. Now I would say not so much. but I have seen some pretty big crowds in Richmond Va., stand and sing it at events. I myself prefer Stephen Foster. I know he is not much in favor either. Thank you for posting this @Samuel.Sohm!
     
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  17. reading48

    reading48 Captain

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    I wouldn't put..too much trust in the Ripley theory?????
     
  18. Mark F. Jenkins

    Mark F. Jenkins Lt. Colonel

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    Ripley was wrong. It was really written by Christopher Marlowe.
     
  19. Mark F. Jenkins

    Mark F. Jenkins Lt. Colonel

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    Went to an enjoyable meeting of the Central Ohio Civil War Roundtable last night-- Steve and Lisa Ball entertained with a variety of Civil War tunes, played on a period instrument, and shared many of the circumstances surrounding the creation of the songs. I had never known that "Lorena" was written by an Ohioan! :O o:

    He mentioned that Emmett later said that, if he'd known the uses "Dixie" would be put to, he never would have written it.
     
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  20. donna

    donna Brev. Brig. Gen'l Forum Host

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    Mark, Steve Ball played for UDC group in 2015. I bumped my thread on his program. We enjoyed his music very much. I have 2 of his CDs.
     
    Last edited: Oct 12, 2017 at 8:32 AM
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