"The Yellow Rose of Texas
" is a traditional American folk song dating back to at least the 1850s. Members of the Western Writers of America chose it as one of the Top 100 Western songs of all time. The earliest known version is found in Christy's Plantation Melodies. No. 2, a songbook published under the authority of Edwin Pearce Christy in Philadelphia in 1853. Christy was the founder of the blackface minstrel show known as the Christy's Minstrels. Like most minstrel songs, the lyrics are written in a cross between the dialect historically spoken by African-Americans and standard American English. The song is written in the first person from the perspective of an African-American singer who refers to himself as a "darkey," longing to return to "a yellow girl" (that is, a light-skinned, or bi-racial woman born of African/African-American and European-American progenitors).