Civil War Songs and Hymns


Make Music!

Music refines the taste, purifies the heart, and elevates our nature. It does more: it soothes in sorrow, tranquillizes in passion, and wears away the irritabilities of life. It intensifies love, it fires the patriotism, and makes the altar of our devotion burn with a purer, holier flame...when wealth and fame and worldly honor are felt to be nothing; when the aims and ambitions and aspirations which were wont to rouse up all the energies of nature toward their accomplishment fail of their accustomed power, music renders the burden of sickness light, and makes us all oblivious of pain and suffering.

-- W.W. Hall, M.D., Hall's Journal of Health for 1862



"Glory, Hallelujah" (DVD-ROM)

"Lincoln and Liberty" (CD-ROM)

"Weeping, Sad and Lonely" (CD-ROM)

Civil War Music Lecture

Interview with Film Composer, John Frizzell

Related AMP Links





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A Civil War Music Treasury
ith World Premiere Recordings
a video program with
rare Civil War era hymns
by Stephen Foster!


"Glory, Hallelujah"
Songs and Hymns of the Civil War Era

The DVD-ROM, playable on computer with Microsoft Word documents and mp 3 audio files, was compiled and edited by Roger Lee Hall, a composer and musicologist and an authority on earlier American vocal music.

The video program features Civil War era hymns by Stephen Foster performed by the Old Stoughton Musical Society Chorus -- this society is the oldest choral society in the USA, founded in 1786.


Louis Moreau Gottschalk (1829-1869)
One of the most popular American composers
in the 1850s and 1860s

The music album features examples from North and South from 1859 to 1869. In addition to songs and hymns of the Civil War Era, there is a commemorative hymn in memory of those lost during the Civil War titled, "They Who Seek The Throne Of Grace," based on a piano theme by Louis Moreau Gottschalk and arranged by Roger Lee Hall.

Included are Premiere Recordings of rare Civil War era hymns by Stephen Foster --

Stephen Foster (1826-1864)
America's best known 19th century songwriter


All the recordings are from the American Music Recordings Archive.



"Drummer Jackson"
79th U.S. Colored Troops

Black men assembled in "rejoicing meetings" all over the land on the last night of December 1862, waiting for the stroke of midnight to bring freedom to those states in the secessionist states. At the contaband camp [for runaway slaves] in Washington., D.C., the assembled blacks sang over and over again: "Go down, Moses...Let my people go."
-- Eileen Southern, The Music of Black Americans: A History, page 236

"Glory, Hallelujah"
Songs and Hymns of the Civil War Era

Compiled by Roger Lee Hall

  • DVD-ROM playable on computer, with background information in Microsoft Word, an image gallery of Civil War sheet music, video program, and music album. All of these items are included on the DVD-ROM for just $19.95 (USA orders only).

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Glory, Hallelujah - Civil War Songs and Hymns




Also available -
with 8 premiere recordings!


"Lincoln and Liberty"
Music From Abraham Lincoln's Era

New 2nd edition, 2015

This title was originally prepared by Roger Lee Hll for the Abraham Lincoln Bicentennial in 2009, and has been revised and expanded on a multi-media computer disc with background information about Lincoln's love of music, an illustrated Listener's Guide, Abraham Lincoln portrait gallery, and the music album, which contains over one hour of music written and heard during Abraham Lincoln's lifetime.

I. The Early Years

1. +The Star Spangled Banner -- words by Francis Scott key, 1814
(19th century version)

2. Hail! Columbia -- words by Joseph Hopkinson/
music: The President's March by Philip Phile
(patriotic song first sung when John Adams was U.S. President in 1798)

II. Lincoln in New Salem

3. Home! Sweet Home -- words: John Howard Payne/
music: Henry R. Bishop, 1823

III. Lincoln: The Lawyer and Legislator

4. Emancipation Song: Get Off The Track --words: Jesse Hutchinson, 1844/
tune: Old Dan Tucker by Daniel D. Emmett

5. Gentle Annie -- words and music by Stephen C. Foster, 1856

IV. Lincoln: The 16th U.S. President and Stephen Foster Hymns


[Portrait of Stephen C. Foster]

6. Lincoln and Liberty --
words: attrib. to William H. Burleigh/ tune: Rosin the Bow
(Lincoln's Campaign Song, 1860)

Hymn: +The Pure, The Bright, The Beautiful --
music by Stephen C. Foster, 1863

8. Hymn: +Over The River -- words: H.C./
music: Stephen C. Foster,1863

9. Hymn: +What Shall The Harvest Be? -- words: Emily Sullivan Oakey/ music: Stephen C. Foster, 1863

10. Hymn: +Choral Harp -- words: William R. Wallace/ music: Stephen C. Foster

11. Hymn: +Give Us This Day -- words & music by Stephen C. Foster, 1863

V. The Civil War Decade

12. Dixie's Land (Dixie) --
Daniel Decatur Emmett, 1859

13. The Bonnie Blue Flag -- words: Harry McCarthy, 1861/
music: The Irish Jaunting Car

14. Go Down, Moses -- Afro-American spiritual
(sung when the Emancipation Proclamation was announced)

15. +A Prayer For The Captive -- Shaker pacifist hymn by Cecilia DeVere
(sung by the Shakers on the day of Lincoln's funeral)

John Brown (aka: John Brown's Body, 1861) and
Battle Hymn of the Republic -- words by Julia Ward Howe, 1862
(from Father Kemp's Old Folks Concert Tunes)

17. Cumberland Gap, 1862

18. We Are Coming, Father Abraam -- Stephen C. Foster, 1862

19. Lorena -- words: Rev. H.D.L. Webster/ music: J.P. Webster, 1857

20. All Quiet Along the Potomac -- words: Mrs. Ethel L. Beers/
music: W.H. Goodwin, 1861

21. When Johnny Comes Marching Home -- Patrick S. Gilmore, 1863

22. Weeping, Sad and Lonely (When This Cruel Is Over) --
words: Charles Carroll Sawyer/ music: Henry Tucker, 1862

23. +Funeral March for Abraham Lincoln
music by Mrs. E.A. Parkhurst, 1865

24. Farewell Father, Friend and Guardian
words: L.M. Dawn/ music: George F. Root, 1865
(sung at Lincoln's funeral in Chicago and Springfield, Illinois)


+ = Premiere Recording


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"Weeping, Sad and Lonely" - Songs and Hymns of the Civil War Era

This disc includes First Recordings of hymns by Stephen Foster and other Civil War era songs and hymns, listed here:

  • 1. DIXIE’S LAND (aka: DIXIE) (1859)
  • 3. THE BONNIE BLUE FLAG (1861)
  • 5. GO DOWN, MOSES (1862) – Afro-American spiritual
  • 6. +A PRAYER FOR THE CAPTIVE (1862)– Shaker pacifist hymn
  • 7. CUMBERLAND GAP (ca. 1862)
  • 8. GOOBER PEAS (ca. 1862)
  • 9. LORENA (1857)
  • 11. +THE PURE, THE BRIGHT, THE BEAUTIFUL (1863) - Stephen Foster
  • 12. +OVER THE RIVER (1863) - Stephen Foster
  • 13. +GIVE US THIS DAY (1863) - Stephen Foster
  • 14. +WHAT SHALL THE HARVEST BE? (1863) - Stephen Foster
  • 15. WE ARE COMING, FATHER ABRAAM 300,000 MORE - Stephen Foster
  • 16. WILLIE HAS GONE TO THE WAR (1863) - Stephen Foster
  • 18. WHEN JOHNNY COMES MARCHING HOME (1863) - Patrick Gilmore
  • 19. +HYMN OF PEACE (1869) - text: Dr. Oliver Wendell Holmes
  • 20. +THEY WHO SEEK THE THRONE OF GRACE - based on a theme by Louis Moreau Gottschalk, arranged by Roger Lee Hall
    (original published versions)

    + = First Recording

Portrait of Dr. Oliver Wendell Holmes (1808-1894)
poet, essayist, physician who wrote the text for "Hymn of Peace"

To order "Weeping, Sad and Lonely" - Songs and Hymns of the Civil War Era
(AMRC 0014) -- click here



Music Lecture



Would you like to schedule an entertaining and enlightening music lecture or workshop for your organization by music historian Roger Lee Hall about Civil War songs and hymns? Included are the story behind the "Battle Hymn of the Republic" and several rarely heard Civil War hymns composed by Stephen Foster, plus more music of the Civil War era. Also a display of music materials and a sing-along with the audience.

To schedule a program, write for more details and fee to:

Civil War music lecture or workshop




An interview with composer, John Frizzell
about his film score for GODS AND GENERALS




Related links on this site


American Music Recordings Collection (AMRC)

"Angel of Peace" - The Boston Peace Jubilees

"Battle Hymn of the Republic"

"John Brown (also known as: John Brown's Body)"

CD: Music in Old Boston

DVD: Singing New Englanders - From The Pilgrims to The Shakers

Society for Earlier American Music (SEAM)

Stoughton Music Heritage Series

"Tenting Tonight on the Old Camp Ground"

"When Johnny Comes Marching Home" - A Civil War Song Marches On


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