The Sacred Harp, 1991 Edition

The 1991 Edition is the more widely used edition of The Sacred Harp in use today, particularly in the north and central regions of Alabama, Georgia, and Mississippi, and among the many Sacred Harp singers outside the South. In the lineage of Sacred Harp editions, it is a descendent of the 1844 tunebook The Sacred Harp by B.F. White and E. J. King, and, more immediately, is a major revision of, and successor to, the Denson Revision of the Original Sacred Harp. To compile the 1991 Edition, a music committee of prominent Sacred Harp singers chaired by Hugh McGraw added 62 songs and deleted 46 rarely sung older songs and anthems. The added songs include late 18th- and early 19th-century classics of New England and Southern origin and new songs by living composers from the South, Northeast, and Midwest. The scores of all 554 songs were entirely retypeset for easier legibility. Sources and dates of tunes and texts were revised to reflect modern scholarship by Professors Warren Steel and William J. Reynolds. There is a new Rudiments section relevant to modern singers by John Garst. This edition has been very enthusiastically received by the Sacred Harp community as well as by hymnologists. The current printing is the eighth or higher. Typographical errors in the initial printings were gradually corrected in subsequent printings. ISBN 0-9727398-0-7. Order from the Sacred Harp Publishing Co., c/o Jesse Pearlman Karlsberg, 318 Arizona Avenue NE, Atlanta, GA 30307. The basic price without shipping is $15.00 per copy; the price including shipping via USPS to the 48 states is $23.00 per copy for up to five copies. The price of a case of six books is $90 without shipping; the price including shipping is $112.00 Larger orders must be in multiples of six books. Orders outside the continental U.S. are by special arrangement. One can make inquiries by contacting the ordering team at at the email address Make checks payable to Sacred Harp Publishing Company. Payment by credit card through PayPal is now available.

Abridged from Shape Note Resource Guide
by Steven L. Sabol (

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