Mudcat Café message #2686094 The Mudcat Café TM
Thread #122362   Message #2686094
Posted By: Q (Frank Staplin)
23-Jul-09 - 01:01 PM
Thread Name: Ship Margaret Evans, songs
Subject: RE: Ship Margaret Evans, songs
In the same short period, 1846-1849, bulgine appeared in a NY newspaper article cited above, applied to a locomotive, and in a journal of the California Gold Rush period, as well as on the minstrel stage.
The same period saw the proliferation of steam engines that could stand pressures above 60 lb/in sq without exploding and their spread to many applications. The steam engine, or bulgine, became well-known to the public.

To me, the use of the term in the minstrel theater is based on the advances and talk of the times, much as the minstrels sang of other items in the news, such as the NY Crystal Palace of 1853, record-setting ships, politics and politicians, etc.