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Lyr Add: The Battle of Jericol

Stewie 01 Oct 01 - 12:26 AM
Stewie 17 Oct 01 - 06:57 PM
JohnInKansas 18 Oct 01 - 07:10 PM
Stewie 19 Oct 01 - 04:58 AM
GUEST,Dave 25 Jul 09 - 08:10 PM
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Subject: ADD: The Battle of Jericol
From: Stewie
Date: 01 Oct 01 - 12:26 AM

Below is my attempted transcription of 'The Battle of Jericol' on the Rounder 'Coal Mining Women' compilation - I would appreciate it if someone who is familiar with the song could check its accuracy for me. The notes to the album do not give specific information on the songs. Can anyone give me info about the specific strike referred to in the song, including the date, duration, outcome etc. I have consulted Google re the Sigmon Coal Company, but became bogged down in transcripts of court judgments. A couple of sentences outlining the specific events underlying this impressive song would be greatly appreciated. Thanks.

THE BATTLE OF JERICOL
(Mary Lou Layne)

Bless the fathers, bless the brothers
Bless the sons who pass the time
Standing, waiting, watching
Upon the picket line
You can see the thoughts written on each face
As they watch that L&N roll
And as they see the trucks run by each day
Taking scabs into Jericol

Bless the mothers, bless the sisters
Bless the wives and the daughters too
Who stand beside the miners
Lord, tell them what to do
They can't sit back any longer
You know, they've got to take a stand
'Cos the women in Harlan county
Want to make it a union land

Bless the veterans and disabled
Who can't work in the mines no more
They keep labouring for these striking men
Though they be old and poor
'Cos the union they built for thirty years
They can't stand by and watch it die
Though their hands are worn and their lungs are spent
They'll fight till their final sigh

Bless the miners who are buried
In the coalfields of these great hills
Lord, spirits are among us
Oh how could they be still
On the mountainside of a non-union mine
How could they peaceful lie
There's a reason for the rich to rule
Can you please, Lord, tell us why

Bless the struggles and the trials
In the battle of Jericol
Bless our demand that only union hands
Mine our own homelands coal
May her safety crew be miners
May a pension plan be written down
And, in the pits of Sigmon's Jericol, may the walls come tumblin' down
And, in the pits of Sigmon's Jericol, may the walls come tumblin' down

Source: transcription of Reel World String Band 'The Battle of Jericol' on Various Artists 'Coal Mining Women' Rounder CD 4025 (1997).

--Stewie.


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Subject: RE: Help: The Battle of Jericol
From: Stewie
Date: 17 Oct 01 - 06:57 PM

Still looking for some info on this one if anyone can oblige. Thanks.

--Stewie.


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Subject: RE: Help: The Battle of Jericol
From: JohnInKansas
Date: 18 Oct 01 - 07:10 PM


No luck finding anything particularly helpful, but I did come across Liner notes for Coal Mining Women

Unfortunately, the notes for the group that performed this song do not include anything on the song. The notes on and by other performers on the album are pretty inspiring though.
Maybe someone else could dig some clues out of them.

As noted above, a search for "The Company" turns up mostly lawsuits. Maybe the song deserves to live!

John


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Subject: RE: Help: The Battle of Jericol
From: Stewie
Date: 19 Oct 01 - 04:58 AM

John,

The notes that you link to are exactly the same as those supplied with the CD. Thanks for your efforts - I appreciate it. The song stands on its own and indeed does deserve to live, but a little background would be good.

--Stewie.


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Subject: RE: Help: The Battle of Jericol
From: GUEST,Dave
Date: 25 Jul 09 - 08:10 PM

This link may help explain the origins of this song by Mary Lou Layne:
http://www.law.cornell.edu/supct/html/00-1307.ZO.html

The miners were having difficulty obtaining their negotiated retirement benefits because of changes in the mining industry caused the miners benefit plans to be in "serious financial crisis."   A strike was threatened unless a legislative solution was reached.

It looks like "The Battle of Jericol" went all the way to the Supreme Court.

"May your pension plan be written down..."

This great song immortalizes the struggle of working people simply standing up for their rights in a system where corporations rule.

Google "Sigmon Coal Jericol Mining strike" for more info.


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