Angelina Baker

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"Angelina Baker"
Song by Christy Minstrels
Songwriter(s)Stephen Foster

"Angelina Baker", sometimes sung as "Angeline the Baker" (Roud 18341) is a song written by Stephen Foster for the Christy Minstrels, and published in 1850.[1] The original laments the loss of a woman slave, sent away by her owner.[2] The lyrics have been subjected to the folk process, and some versions have become examples of the "Ugly Girl" or "Dinah" song.[citation needed]

Music historian Ken Emerson noted that controversy over free and slave states, as well as Fugitive Slave Act of 1850, were hotly debated topics at the time of the song's composition. According to Emerson, Foster's lyrics obliquely acknowledge these controversies. Uncertain of the reception his blackface songs would receive, he temporarily abandoned the genre.[3]

Fiddle tune[edit]

An instrumental version, as collected by John A. Lomax under the title "Angelina the Baker"[4] is a popular fiddle or banjo tune, and differs from the Stephen Foster melody. It is part of the old time fiddle canon, but is also played by bluegrass musicians.[5] This old-time tune was also played as bluegrass by Stuart Duncan at the 2007 Delaware Valley Bluegrass Festival.[6]


According to Lyle Lofgren, writing for Inside Bluegrass, publication of the Minnesota Bluegrass and Old-Time Music Association, "Foster published Angelina Baker in 1850, and it was featured on stage by the original Christy Minstrels."[7] The melody and lyrics are as follows:

Angeline the baker lives in our village green,
The way I always loved her beats all you ever seen.

Angeline the baker, her age is forty-three,fed of sugar
candy and she still won’t marry me

Her father is the miller, they call him Uncle Sam.
I never will forget her, unless I take a dram.

Angeline is handsome, Angeline is tall,
They say she sprained her ankle a-dancing at the ball.

She can't do hard work because she is not stout,
She bakes her biscuits every day, and pours the coffee out.

I'll never marry no other girl, no matter where I go.
I said I'd marry Angeline just twenty years ago.

The last time I saw her was at the county fair.
Her father run me almost home and told me to stay there.

Notable performers[edit]


  1. ^ Foster, Stephen (1850). Angelina Baker (musical score). Foster's plantation melodies. Vol. 4. as sung by the Christy Minstrels. Baltimore, New Orleans: F. D. Benteen. OCLC 23161833.
  2. ^ The Center for American Music. "Professional Career". University of Pittsburgh. Retrieved 22 November 2010.
  3. ^ Ken Emerson. 1998. Doo-dah!: Stephen Foster and the rise of American popular culture. Da Capo Press. p. 162.
  4. ^ Uncle Alec Dunford, John A. Lomax. "Angelina the Baker". Archived from the original on October 19, 2012. Retrieved 26 November 2010.
  5. ^ ""It's Olt Time we don't have to be in tune" - Telling remark, intended as humorous, indicating that this tune is OT Lonesome River Band at Gettysburg Bluegrass Festival 082308 0000 "Angeline the Baker"". 2008-09-23. Retrieved 2011-07-27.
  6. ^ a b NBB at the 2007 Delaware Valley Bluegrass Festival. For more info, visit
  7. ^ "Old Songs: Angeline The Baker". Retrieved 2011-07-27.
  8. ^ "Crooked Still, Angeline The Baker Lyrics". Stephen Foster. Retrieved 2015-11-20.

External links[edit]