Arago: 1-cent Foster

1-cent Foster

The 1-cent Famous American Composers stamp issued May 3, 1940, honors Stephen Collins Foster (1826-1864). Foster ranks among the most beloved American song writers of the nineteenth century. Although a native of Pittsburgh, Foster wrote mainly of the South. He looked to the minstrel genre as an outlet for his music and sought to refine and humanize minstrelsy. His songs depict black and white, rich and poor as sharing the same set of ideals and desires. Among his best known songs are "Jeanie with the Light Brown Hair," "Old Folks at Home," "Oh! Susanna," "Massa's in de Cold Ground," "Old Black Joe," and "Beautiful Dreamer." Foster died impoverished in 1864.


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