Meaning of: Buffalo gals
Thanks to the many who responded with information regarding the line
"she was fein to view" in Alice Parker's arrangement of "Buffalo Gals."
Several suggested I contact Ms. Parker directly, which I did. Her
response is as follows:
"What a tempest in a tea-pot! It's a plain old mis-spelling which has
persisted through the many editions. . . Plain old 'fine', please!"
By the way, I was found the following web site, which provides
historical information on the origin of the song --
This site (as many do) uses "fair to view" for the line of text in
question. It also refutes the notion that the song has anything
whatsoever to do with Native American women doing the Buffalo Dance, as
one respondent claimed. Originally called "Lubly Fan," this minstrel
song would change title depending on the location of performance
("Charleston Gals," "New York Gals," etc.); "Buffalo" just happened to
be the city name that stuck.
Thanks for the help; we'll sing "fine."
Benjamin Kornelis, DMA
Director of Choral Activities, Dordt College
498 Fourth Ave. NE, Sioux Center, IA 51250