THE BONNIE BLUE FLAG.

[np: 1861?]. 4to broadside printed on brown paper. Seven stanzas, each followed by a two-line chorus. 5-5/8" X 10-1/4." Text surrounded by a decorative border. Blank upper right and lower left corners torn [the lower right taking a small portion of the border]. Good+.

This popular Confederate song was printed in a variety of Confederate locales, some with Macarthy's name as author, some as song sheets, others as broadsides. Parrish and Willingham record about ten different varieties. "Next to 'Dixie's Land,' perhaps no other song was as well loved by the Confederate soldier as 'The Bonnie Blue Flag.' Written by Harry Macarthy [1834-1888] and sung to the old Irish tune 'The Irish Jaunting Car,' the song lays out the order of secession of the States that went on to form the Confederacy. The first flag of the Confederacy was a single white star on a blue background. This song, especially popular in the South during the early years of the war, counts out the eleven seceding states one by one. His song was an instant hit with Confederate soldiers and civilians alike. He premiered it during a concert in Jackson, Mississippi, in the spring of 1861 and performed it again in September of that same year at the New Orleans Academy of Music in front of an audience of soldiers headed for the Virginia front. The response was enthusiastic, and Macarthy was suddenly in demand as he had never been before" [online site of the American Battlefield Trust].
The Song begins with an assertion of white Southerners' entitlement to slave "property." "We are a band of brothers natives to the soil, / Fighting for our property we gained by honest toil; / But when our rights were threatened the cry rose near and far, / Hurrah for the bonnie Blue Flag that bears a single star." The Chorus: "Hurrah, hurrah, for Southern rights hurrah / Hurrah for the bonnie Blue Flag that bears eleven stars."
Rudolph 44. Parrish & Willingham 6417-6419. Wolf C26 [variant]. Item #37372

Price: $450.00