|Famous Songs of the Civil War.|
Music also played a critical role during the Civil War. Both the North and South relied heavily on musicians and bands to boost the morale of their troops. Some songs were popular on both sides, but most were specific to either the North or the South. |
During the Civil War singing was one of the troops' favorite ways to pass time. Many songs were composed during the war and sung throughout the armies and at home. Many were inspirational marching tunes, while others were sad and sentimental and sung when thinking of home or loved ones. Sometimes, if soldiers liked a tune they heard the opposing side singing, they would write their own lyrics to it.
On the field, fifers played shrill tunes accompanied by drummers beating various beats. Drumbeats originally served two purposes: to tell soldiers what to do, and to keep them in step. Drum calls even issued commands to soldiers. Buglers were crucial in the war because they too were responsible for sounding out commands. These included reveille in the morning as well as field commands such as advance and retreat.
Music has always been an important part of American society. Military bands played at recruitment rallies and their patriotic marching tunes were sometimes a great incentive to inspire young men to enlist. When volunteer regiments were recruited, a regimental band was usually included as a part of that group. The bands were also needed to play for parades and evening concerts. Union and Confederate armies both had regimental bands. Some brigade bands did accompany their commanders onto the field and played while the battle raged all around them.
|The following are merely a few of the many popular songs of the Civil War, their lyrics and composers:|
|The Battle Cry of Freedom||Battle Hymn of the Republic||Lincoln and Liberty|
|John Brown's Body||Billy Barlow||For the Dear Old Flag I Die|
|The Army of the Free||The Bonnie Blue Flag||We Conquer or Die|
|Dixie's Land||The Girl I Left Behind Me||God Save the South|
|Goober Peas||Grafted Into the Army||When Johnny Comes Marching Home|
|Lorena||Marching Through Georgia||My Maryland|
|The New York Volunteer||The Rebel Soldier||Stonewall Jackson's Way|
|Tramp! Tramp! Tramp!||Yankee Doodle||The Yellow Rose of Texas|