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User Name Thread Name Subject Posted
GUEST,Richie DTStudy: Well Sold the Cow/Crafty Farmer-Child 283 (34) Lyr Add: THE KENNEBECK BITE 30 Dec 13

Here's the earliest US version I've found:

The Kennebeck Bite- Douglass 1841-1856

1. Near Boston there lived a mason by trade
He had for his servants a man and a maid
A Kennebeck boy he had for his man
And for to do his work his name it was John
Ral de dal lal lal de da

2. Twas early one morning he caled to John
John hearing his master he quickly did come
Go take that cow and drive her to fair
For She's in good order and all I have to spare
ral de dal

3. John takes the cow out of the barn
And drives her to the fair as you shall learn
In a little time he met with a man
And sold him the cow for a six pound ten

4. He steped to the tavern to take him a drink
T'was there the old merchant he paid him all his chink
He steped to the landlady and unto her did say
What shall I do with my money I do pray

5. Sew it up in your coat lining i think it the best way
For fear that you be robed all on the highway
There sets a highwayman a drinking of his wine
He says to himself that money is all mine

6. In a little time John started for to go
The hiwayman folowed after all so
In a little time he over takes John
You are welcome over taken says he young man

7. They rode till they came to a long dark lane
The hiwayman says i will tell you in plain
Deliver up your money with out fear or strife
Orhear i will end your sweet precious life

8. John seeing now no time to dispute
He jumped off the horse with out fear or doubt
And from the coat lining he pulled the money out
And among the tall grass he strewed it all about

9. The hiwayman comeing down from his horse
But little did he think it would be to his loss
Whilst he was picking the money that was strewd
John jumped upon the horse and away did ride

10. The hiwayman called to John forto stop
But little did he mind but away he did trot
Home to his master and thus he did bring
A horse and a saddle and many a fine thing

11. The maid steped to the door to see John return
She went to quaint her master that was in the other room
He steped to the door and says to him thus
The devil has my cow turned into a horse

12. Oh no your cow I very well sold
But robed on the way by a hiwayman bold
And whilst he was putting your money in his purse
To make your amends i came off with his horse

13. The bags were taken off and out of them were told
Five hundred pounds in silver and in gold
Besides a pair of pistols he says jack i vow
I think my good old master i very well sold [your cow]

14. As for a lad you have done very wrath [rare]
Three quarters of the money you shall have for your share
As for the villain you served him just rite
I think you tucked upon him a Kenebec bite

The broadside The Yorkshire Bright was printed in 1826 by Henry Trumbull; Printed and sold at the Book-Store No. 25, High Street, Providence. Some of the Canadian version also use "bright" [sic]. There's a copy in the Harvard Library. Anyone have text?


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