Music

Every period in a country’s history has its own popular music. It was no less true of America 250 years ago than it is today.

A wide variety of music was available to 18th century America — from printed music to the latest dances, military marches, fiddle tunes, and songs from the musical stage.

Go to these pages to select the songs of your choice:
The French and Indian War
The 18th Century
The Revolutionary War
George Washington’s Life
The War of 1812
The Star-Spangled Banner & America
Yankee Doodle

Not all of the music was written by Americans. Most of the songs of the Colonial and Revolutionary War period originated in England, Scotland and Ireland as people from those countries immigrated to America.

On these pages you will find a representative collection of music from 18th Century America. You can listen to and download country dances, marches, dances, airs and minuets.

Popular music at that time was seldom composed for a specific instrument. Musicians used any instrument at their disposal, a practice borne of convenience and necessity.

Listen closely and you will hear the harpsichord, the violin, the fiddle, the hammered dulcimer, the tabor pipe and drum and the recorder.

Get Windows Media Player!All of the music at The Music of Early America can be played using Windows Media Player.

The music files on this page are courtesy of:

  • Sara and Maynard Johnson. Historic Music of Olden Times.
    The Kitchen Music website: http://members.aol.com/kitchiegal
  • Colin Roth. Fiddle tunes from the American Revolution.
    Halcyon Days Music: http://www.halcyondaysmusic.com/colonialmusic

Please note: While the music presented here (i.e., the melody and lyrics) is in the public domain, the arrangements and midi sequences are not. It is a violation of the U.S. Copyright Law to alter this music in any way or re-post altered versions of the files, or distribute or publish these sequences either in electronic (e.g., CD) or hard copy form, or use these files for commercial purposes by selling or charging a fee. Such a violation is subject to legal action.