Friday, December 28, 2007
BLAND, JAMES Born in Flushing, New York in 1854, James Bland was a noted minstrel comedian and composer, gaining fame in both Europe and the United States. During the course of his life, Bland wrote more than six hundred popular songs, including "Oh Dem Golden Slippers" and "In the Evening by the Moonlight." His most popular composition, "Carry Me Back to Old Virginny," was adopted as Virginia's official state song in 1940. Bland himself died of pneumonia on May 5, 1911.