My Michigan


My Michigan

My Michigan is the title of the State of Michigan's only official state anthem. It was written by Giles Kavanagh (lyrics) and H. O'Reilly Clint (music) in 1933. It was published by Clint's own music publishing company at Detroit. It was formally adopted as an official state song by the Michigan Legislature in 1937 by Concurrent Resolution 17.

Ironically, for being an official state anthem, the song is rarely sung and never used on formal state occasions. This may be because doing so would incur liability to pay a royalty. The State did not purchase or/and the authors would not sell the copyright, and neither was the song released into the public domain. Under current federal law, the song's copyright will expire at the end of the 70th year following the deaths of its authors. There are two version of the sheet music; one is held at the Rare Book Room at the Library of Michigan and the other is housed at the Bentley Historical Museum.[1]

Sources

  • Fuller, George N. (Editor), Michigan: A Centennial History of the State and Its People (Vol. V: Michigan Biography). Chicago: The Lewis publishing company, 1939. (pages 47-49, biography of Giles Kavanagh)
  • Journal of the House of Representatives of the State of Michigan, 1937, Regular Session. Volume I. Lansing, MI: Franklin DeKleine Company. (see the history [PDF] of the resolution)
  • "Justice John W. Fitzgerald Portrait Presentation," M. R. Vol. 447. Presentation of the Portrait of the Honorable John W, Fitzgerald, November 10, 1994. (page 5, reference to "My Michigan" song)
  • McNamara, Daniel I. (Editor). The ASCAP Biographical Dictionary of Composers, Authors, and Publishers. NY: Thomas Y. Crowell Company, 1952. (pages 88-89, H. O'Reilly Clint)

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