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Broadside ballad entitled 'Black Eyed Susiannah'

Commentary

Verse 1 begins: 'I've been to the east, I've been to the west, / I've been to Indianna'. There is a woodcut illustration above the title, which depicts a black woman holding a basket in front of a landscape with palm trees. This sheet was published by James Li[n]dsay of 9 King Street, Glasgow.

James Lindsay is known to have operated a printing business in Glasgow between 1847 and 1909. He worked out of 9 King Street, however, from 1852 until 1859. This broadside has an advert for over 5000 sheets of broadside stock, and he was also a prolific chapbook producer. Lindsay is also known to have been a stationer and private commissions printer.

Broadsides are often crudely illustrated with woodcuts - the earliest form of printed illustration, first used in the mid-fifteenth century. Inclusion of an illustration on a broadside increased its perceived value, especially among the illiterate. To keep costs down, publishers would normally reuse their limited stock of generic woodcuts.

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Probable date of publication: 1852-1859   shelfmark: L.C.Fol.178.A.2(034)
Broadside ballad entitled 'Black Eyed Susiannah'
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