Popular Songs in American History
















Welcome to Lesley Nelson (aka the Contemplator)'s
Popular Songs In American History Website.

American Folk and Traditional Music with Lyrics, Midi Files, Tune Information
and History behind the folksongs and ballads. With folksongs arranged by time period.


This page was created on January 20, 1999

Please be aware that the midi controller will work in Chrome, Firefox, and Opera, but it does not function in Internet Explorer or Edge.
For those browsers, you will have to use the download link in order to play the file.


The background music is Over the Hills and Far Away
Sequenced by Lesley Nelson-Burns




Welcome to Popular Songs in American History. These tunes were not all written by Americans, but are songs that were known in America. Most songs of the Colonial and Revoltionary Era were songs that originated in England, Scotland and Ireland and immigrated with their people.

  • The dates indicated are, of course, not perfect. I have struggled to put them in APPROXIMATE/BEST GUESS date order. If you have an educated correction, please let me know. A few tunes are listed more than once to make clear they were popular in several eras.

  • If you wish to use any of these tunes in an archive or on a webpage READ THIS.

  • If you are looking for a particular tune, the fastest way to find it is to use the Search Engine. The search engine covers the entire site so it will find more than just American songs.