Good Medicine and Good Music: A Biography of Mrs. Joe Person, Patent Remedy Entrepreneur and Musician, Including the Complete Text of Her 1903 Autobiography

Overview

Alice Morgan Person (1840-1913) was a colorful North Carolinian. Born wealthy and married well, she fell into hardship after the Civil War but remarkably overcame by selling patent medicine and playing and sharing her arrangements of folk tunes, leading one newspaper to call her "perhaps the best known woman in the state." Presented here is her complete and previously unpublished autobiography. In addition, her story is told through new research and first-hand accounts, and her place in the histories of American ...

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Good Medicine and Good Music: A Biography of Mrs. Joe Person, Patent Remedy Entrepreneur and Musician, Including the Complete Text of Her 1903 Autobiography

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Overview

Alice Morgan Person (1840-1913) was a colorful North Carolinian. Born wealthy and married well, she fell into hardship after the Civil War but remarkably overcame by selling patent medicine and playing and sharing her arrangements of folk tunes, leading one newspaper to call her "perhaps the best known woman in the state." Presented here is her complete and previously unpublished autobiography. In addition, her story is told through new research and first-hand accounts, and her place in the histories of American patent medicine and southern folk music are discussed from an ethnomusicological perspective.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780786434596
  • Publisher: McFarland & Company, Incorporated Publishers
  • Publication date: 7/14/2009
  • Pages: 216
  • Product dimensions: 5.90 (w) x 8.90 (h) x 0.60 (d)

Meet the Author

Award winner David Hursh is head music librarian and associate professor at East Carolina University's J.Y. Joyner Library in Greenville, North Carolina. He is the author of several scholarly articles that have appeared in Music Reference Services Quarterly and North Carolina Libraries. Chris Goertzen is an associate professor who teaches music history and world music at the University of Southern Mississippi in Hattiesburg.

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Table of Contents

Acknowledgments ix

Introduction 1

Book 1: "The Chivalry of Man as Exemplified in the Life of Mrs. Joe Person": Alice Morgan Person's Story in Her Own Words, 1858-1892

Preface 7

Foreword 9

Part I

1 The Origin of Mrs. Joe Person's Remedy 11

2 Castles in the Air 14

3 The Development of the Remedy 20

4 More Castles in the Air 22

5 The Chivalry of Man 25

6 More Chivalry 29

7 Clouds-Sunshine: "After the Alps Comes Italy" 35

8 I Go to Church 38

9 More Chivalry 40

10 Partner No. 2 47

11 Tarboro and Tarboro Ways 50

12 Partners, Adieu! 52

Part II Notes By the Wayside

Flowers Plucked from the Hedges and Thorns from the Briar-Bushes 55

Poor John! 59

"Sonny" 59

Not My Daughter, Oh No! 60

What Is Happiness? 62

Big, Rich and a Strong Pillar 64

An Honest Man Is the Noblest Work of God 65

A Woman's Opinion 66

Finale 66

Book II A Life Out of the Ordinary: Alice's Story in the Words of Others

Part I The Woman

1 Daughter and Sister 71

2 Wife and Mother 85

3 Medicine Maker and Musician 103

4 Public and Private 129

Part II Reflections on the Medicine and the Music

5 Snake Oil or Native American Medical Marvel? 137

6 The Remedy and the Turn-of-the-Century Patent Medicine Trade 151

7 Alice and Music in Fashion 167

8 Popular Airs, Blue Alsatian Mountains, and Nostalgia 179

Appendix Timeline of Alice Morgan Person and Her Company 189

Chapter Notes 193

Bibliography 201

Index 205

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