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HOLDEN, Oliver, psalmist, born in Shirley, Massachusetts, 18 September, 1765; died in Charlestown, Massachusetts, in 1831. While engaged in the carpenter's trade he published his first book of sacred music, arranged in three and four parts, entitled " The American Harmony" (1793). Most of this was original. Soon afterward he published the " Union Harmony, or a Universal Collection of Sacred Music"; "The Massachusetts Compiler," with Hans Gram and Samuel Holyoke (1795); and edited " The Worcester Collection of Sacred Harmony" (1797). The last was a sixth edition, altered, revised, and corrected, with an appendix containing new psalm-tunes. It was printed upon movable types that had been procured from England in 1786, by Isaac Thomas, of Worcester, and is the oldest music-book that was thus printed. Holden was the author of several hymn-tunes, including " Confidence " and " Coronation," which are still popular.
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