1817.084: The Gentleman’s Amusement.

Published: 1817

Full Title: The gentleman’s amusement. Containing a select collection of songs, marches &c. for the flute, fife or violin. Book 1, price 3s 6d.

Author: Shaw, Robert, and Benjamin Carr, comps.

Place Issued: Norfolk

Issuing Press: Uncertain

Description: 2 pgs. + 36 pgs. + 36 pgs. + 16 pgs. [90 pgs. total]; 17 cm. x 24 cm. (12mo).


Imprint states: "Norfolk: Printed for & sold by Thos. Balls. And may be had in Richmond, Baltimore, Charleston, Washington, Alexandria & Petersburg." Surviving copies are bound with books 2 & 3, both of which lack an individual title page, so suggesting that the three items were part of a series published in quick succession in Norfolk. R.J. Wolfe (Secular Music in America) dates work to 1817 based on songs contained within, hence date reported here; O.G.T. Sonneck (Early Secular American Music) names the compilers as Robert Shaw and Benjamin Carr, as reported here, based on earlier editions published elsewhere. Balls was a dry-goods merchant in Norfolk, who was also a kinsman of the London music publishers James & George Balls; as a result he also served as the family's agent there, selling their imprints through his Norfolk store. He advertised solely in the American Beacon at this time, so this title was likely issued from the office of Shields, Charlton & Co. (i. e. Hamilton Shields, William C. Shields, Seymour P. Charlton, and Henry Ashburn); but competing office of James O'Connor & Thomas G. Broughton cannot be excluded, so the indeterminacy here. While recorded in Shaw & Shoemaker, the Early American Imprints Series has not processed a digital image of the imprint, making it accessible only in the obsolete micro-opaque edition.

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