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Origins: 'The Orphan's Lament'

DigiTrad:
THE ORPHAN'S LAMENT


Related threads:
Orphan's Lament (6) (closed)
Lyr Req: two little orfans (4) (closed)


In Mudcat MIDIs:
The Orphans' Lament (Two Little Children) [As sung by Jean Ritchie] (from the Folkways CD "Precious Memories.")


paschals@aol.com 15 Dec 97 - 08:41 PM
Dale Rose 15 Dec 97 - 11:21 PM
T-Mac 11 Nov 02 - 04:13 PM
Megan L 11 Nov 02 - 04:39 PM
BTMP 11 Nov 02 - 05:10 PM
GUEST,Q 11 Nov 02 - 06:23 PM
GUEST,Q 11 Nov 02 - 06:32 PM
Joe Offer 11 Nov 02 - 07:07 PM
kytrad (Jean Ritchie) 11 Nov 02 - 07:18 PM
GUEST,Q 11 Nov 02 - 07:59 PM
Malcolm Douglas 11 Nov 02 - 08:51 PM
Joe Offer 11 Nov 02 - 09:03 PM
GUEST,Q 11 Nov 02 - 09:51 PM
GUEST,Richie 11 Nov 02 - 10:04 PM
Joe Offer 11 Nov 02 - 11:11 PM
GUEST,Q 11 Nov 02 - 11:38 PM
GUEST,Richie 11 Nov 02 - 11:49 PM
Joe Offer 11 Nov 02 - 11:56 PM
Stewie 12 Nov 02 - 12:36 AM
GUEST,Q 12 Nov 02 - 12:38 AM
GUEST,Richie 12 Nov 02 - 12:44 AM
GUEST,Q 12 Nov 02 - 02:22 AM
T-Mac 12 Nov 02 - 10:59 AM
kytrad (Jean Ritchie) 12 Nov 02 - 07:48 PM
GUEST,Godschild4sure@aol.com 13 Dec 03 - 01:49 AM
GUEST,rjacobs 01 Feb 04 - 10:14 AM
Q (Frank Staplin) 01 Feb 04 - 02:13 PM
GUEST,Mary 25 Aug 04 - 11:20 PM
GUEST,kaiwaya@juno.com 25 Oct 04 - 08:34 PM
GUEST 21 Dec 04 - 07:56 PM
GUEST 11 Jan 05 - 06:57 PM
GUEST,harrisofiowa@yahoo.com 19 Mar 05 - 12:43 AM
Q (Frank Staplin) 19 Mar 05 - 03:40 PM
GUEST,Ardis Noyes Rettich 01 Aug 05 - 12:40 AM
Dave'sWife 01 Aug 05 - 12:07 PM
GUEST,Nan 17 Sep 07 - 01:02 AM
GUEST,Bob Coltman 17 Sep 07 - 07:29 PM
GUEST,Michael 's Little Girl 14 Jan 08 - 06:15 PM
GUEST 24 Aug 09 - 08:32 PM
Janie 24 Aug 09 - 09:37 PM
GUEST,martina :) 25 Aug 09 - 11:07 AM
GUEST 14 Feb 11 - 08:56 PM
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Subject: The Orphan's Lament
From: paschals@aol.com
Date: 15 Dec 97 - 08:41 PM

Does anyone know of an available recording of The Orphan's Lament?

Thanks -paschal


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Subject: RE: The Orphan's Lament
From: Dale Rose
Date: 15 Dec 97 - 11:21 PM

The only recording listed at Folk Music On Recordings is

The Orphans' Lament

1.Ritchie, Jean. None But One, Sire SA 75230, LP (1977), cut# 5.

Unfortunately, you said available, and that doesn't sound like one that will be easily found. Their site does have a lot of value however. Check it at: http://milton.mse.jhu.edu:8001/research/folkindex/maindex.htm


This message and the one above it were moved here from another thread.
-Joe Offer-


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Subject: Origins: 'The Orphan's Lament'
From: T-Mac
Date: 11 Nov 02 - 04:13 PM

The reference to The Orphan's Lament as recorded by Jean Ritchie (and mentioned elsewhere in this site) appears to be a condenced version of the song. Anybody know the origins of the song or a longer version?


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Subject: RE: Origins: 'The Orphan's Lament'
From: Megan L
Date: 11 Nov 02 - 04:39 PM

this site may help

http://memory.loc.gov/ammem/mussmhtml/mussmTitles349.html


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Subject: RE: Origins: 'The Orphan's Lament'
From: BTMP
Date: 11 Nov 02 - 05:10 PM

I am familiar with Jean Ritchie's version but not a longer one. I wrote a simple chorus to the song, which I am planning on recording. (assume key of C):

-------F--------C----------G7----------------------C---
We're orphans, orphans. Drifting this world all alone.
-------F--------C-----------G7------------------C---
We're orphans, orphans. No mama, no papa, nor home.


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Subject: RE: Origins: 'The Orphan's Lament'
From: GUEST,Q
Date: 11 Nov 02 - 06:23 PM

There are at least three different "Orphan's Lament."
Orphan's Lament 1- Thread 36291 Ritchie's Orphans
This thread gives clickies to two Max Hunter versions of the same song.

2.- The Orphan's Lament, words Sarah T. Bolton and music by J. E. Webster, 1883.
See American Memory

3.- Orphan's Lament, words by "Melodia" and music by J. K. Opl, 1850.
See American Memory.


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Subject: RE: Origins: 'The Orphan's Lament'
From: GUEST,Q
Date: 11 Nov 02 - 06:32 PM

Randolph, Ozark Folksongs, has "The Orphan Child," "The Orphan Girl," "The Orphan Song," "Nobody's Darling on Earth," and "The Blind Child." They are not related to Ritchie's orphans.


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Subject: RE: Origins: 'The Orphan's Lament'
From: Joe Offer
Date: 11 Nov 02 - 07:07 PM

Hmmmm. This page (click) calls an abbreviated version "Two Little Orphans" and attributes it to Roy Acuff, copyright 1963 - recorded by none other than Dolly Parton.

Ah, but wait! - this page has a 1953 recording, and lyrics that are almost exactly the same as what are in the Digital Tradition.

Jean's recording is on her "Precious Memories" album, Folkways F-2427. It's available from Smithsonian Folkways as a custom CD, and it's darn good.

On her album, Jean Ritchie calls the song "Two Little Childdren - The Orphan's Last Plea."

-Joe Offer-


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Subject: RE: Origins: 'The Orphan's Lament'
From: kytrad (Jean Ritchie)
Date: 11 Nov 02 - 07:18 PM

The old Sire recording was turned over to me, and has become my album and now CD, "None But One/High Hills & Mountains" which just means that we combined two albums on one CD. I sing the song as I remember singing it with my sisters "over the dishpan," making up harmonies.
The producer we were hoping to get (when we were making the original album), Al Steckler, had been listening to my old recordings, and he said he'd do the new one if I would include, "Two Little Children- the Orphan's Last Plea," as he had fallen in love with it from the old Folkways album, "Precious Memories." "The Orphan's Last Plea," was the title I recalled from childhood, and "Two Little Children" was just the first three words of the song.

I do think the song did get condensed, over the years. Most the the older and longer ballads do, too.


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Subject: RE: Origins: 'The Orphan's Lament'
From: GUEST,Q
Date: 11 Nov 02 - 07:59 PM

Then there is The Orphan's Lament, Xoomei throat singing, Huun Huur Tu, on Shanachie. No?

The Wolf Collection is amazing. Another Max Hunter! Wolf Collection


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Subject: RE: Origins: 'The Orphan's Lament'
From: Malcolm Douglas
Date: 11 Nov 02 - 08:51 PM

Somehow or other I've overlooked that site until now. Oh dear. More things to do instead of working...


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Subject: RE: Origins: 'The Orphan's Lament'
From: Joe Offer
Date: 11 Nov 02 - 09:03 PM

Ha! I found a resource before Malcolm got to it!!!
Say, I was wondering if somebody had time to review and transcribe the sheet music at the American Memory Site and post the lyrics here and send me a MIDI. The Jean Ritchie album notes actually had music notation, so I posted it in Mudcat MIDIs (Link above).
-Joe Offer (click to e-mail)-


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Subject: RE: Origins: 'The Orphan's Lament'
From: GUEST,Q
Date: 11 Nov 02 - 09:51 PM

I found a bushel basket of orphan songs here. Want them all? (Ha, Ha!)
List O Titles

Those titled Orphan's Lament have nothing to do with the Burke 1953-Ritchie song. I checked the others and they are unrelated as well. I think all of these maudlin songs were inspired by the short story about the Little Matchstick Girl which was read to every child up to at least my childhood.


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Subject: RE: Origins: 'The Orphan's Lament'
From: GUEST,Richie
Date: 11 Nov 02 - 10:04 PM

I have the Two Little Orphans (Two Little Children) by Burke and Horner in 1899.

Richie


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Subject: RE: Origins: 'The Orphan's Lament'
From: Joe Offer
Date: 11 Nov 02 - 11:11 PM

Where did you find it, Richie?
-Joe Offer-


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Subject: RE: Origins: 'The Orphan's Lament'
From: GUEST,Q
Date: 11 Nov 02 - 11:38 PM

Ernest Stoneman and the Blue Ridge Corn Shuckers sang Two Little Orphans , Folk Music in America, vol. 13. Also in Round The Heart of Old Galex, vol. 1


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Subject: RE: Origins: 'The Orphan's Lament'
From: GUEST,Richie
Date: 11 Nov 02 - 11:49 PM

Joe- I don't have a copy.

Here's all my info: Charles A. Burke- words; and Sidney H. Horner- Music; published in 1899, no publisher given.

Early ref: Melinger Henry 1933,

I probably have versions in my library but I won't have time to dig for a while.

-Richie


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Subject: RE: Origins: 'The Orphan's Lament'
From: Joe Offer
Date: 11 Nov 02 - 11:56 PM

Hi, Richie - is your information enough to tie it as correct information for the songwriters of the particular song that's in the Digital Tradition, or can you just say that Burke & Horner published a song with that title?
I used to be a government investigator, so I'm a stickler for specificity. In other words, exactly what information do you have, and from what source?
And if you can't tell me here, then maybe we'd better go downtown and talk about it.
[grin]
-Joe Offer, now retired-


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Subject: RE: Origins: 'The Orphan's Lament'
From: Stewie
Date: 12 Nov 02 - 12:36 AM

Meade et alia give another early reference as Delaney's Songbook #24 [NYC: Wm W. Delaney 1892-1921]. The earliest oldtimey recording was by George Reneau on 16 October 1925 in NYC. It was issued in July 1926 as Vocalion 15349, almost a year before the release of the Stoneman recording mentioned above [Edison 51935 which was recorded January 1927 and released in June 1927].

--Stewie.


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Subject: RE: Origins: 'The Orphan's Lament'
From: GUEST,Q
Date: 12 Nov 02 - 12:38 AM

There is an Irish song (originally English?) called The Two Little Orphans, recorded by several artists including Bridie Gallagher. Dunno what it is.
A whole passel of country and gospel performers have recorded the song, but I could find no authors listed on Google except Parton and Acuff, etc. Obviously public domain, but age?


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Subject: RE: Origins: 'The Orphan's Lament'
From: GUEST,Richie
Date: 12 Nov 02 - 12:44 AM

Joe-

It's the same song that's listed in the DT by Jean Ritchie.
Thanks for the back-up Stewie, it's good to hear from you,

Richie


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Subject: RE: Origins: 'The Orphan's Lament'
From: GUEST,Q
Date: 12 Nov 02 - 02:22 AM

Joe, Kytrad commented in a little more detail on "Two Little Children" by Jean Ritchie in thread 38580, 09 Nov 01. Note that the title in her posts differs from that in the DT. Two Little Children
According to this thread, there may be a version with Papa killed in a train wreck- thread 42551: Two Little Children

The Orphan's Lament in the DT needs a shift in the ' to after Orphans'.
The song by Burke in the Wolf Collection, found by Joe, has more detail than the Ritchie version (?) in the DT; e. g. Papa was a life-saving captain, etc. It is worth quoting.

Lyr. Add: THE TWO ORPHANS

Two little children, a boy and a girl,
Set by an old church door.
The little girl's feet were as brown as the curl
That hung from the dress which she wore.
The boy's coat was faded and hatless his head;
A tear shone in each little eye.
"Why don't you run home to your mama?" I said,
And this was the maiden's reply:

Chorus: "Our mama's in heaven; they took her away,
And left Jim and I all alone.
We came here to sleep 'til the close of the day,
For we have no mama at home.
We can't win our bread-- too little," she said.
"Jim five years, and I'm only seven.
There's no one to love us and Papa is dead,
And our darling mama's in heaven."

"Our papa was lost out at sea long age;
We waited all night on the shore.
For he was a life-saving captain, you know.
But he never come back any more.
Then Mama got sick; angels took her away,
Away to that home warm and bright.
'They'll come for my darlings,' she told us, 'some day.'
Perhaps they are coming tonight,"

"Perhaps there's no room tonight," she said,
"For two little ones to keep."
Then placing her arms around little Jim's neck,
And kissing him. They both fell asleep.
The sexton came early to ring the church bell,
And found them beneath the snow white.
The angel's made room for two orphans to dwell
In heaven with mama that night.

Chorus.
Sung by W. P. Burke, Heber Springs, Arkansas, 1953.

I'm sure everyone who reads this song wonders why the person who listened to her sad story was too stone-hearted to help. Typical of these songs, though, and it reflects something found frequently in stories about the 19th century. People would not get involved with misfortune because agencies that would take unfortunate ones off the samaritan's hands were few and often distant. In rural areas, some orphan children ended up as little more than slaves until they were old enough to run away. This happened to some of the orphan children shipped to Canada from the British Isles in the 19th century.
A note says the song is found in Brown, vol. 2 #150 (not mentioned in vol. 5, "The Music of the Folk Songs").
The song appears in several songbooks, unattributed. One is "Songs of the Pioneers" (Anon. compilation by the Genealogy Shoppe). The Roy Acuff version is copyright 1963 by Acuff-Rose Music.
Doesn't seem to be any information on either Burke or Horner in Google.


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Subject: RE: Origins: 'The Orphan's Lament'
From: T-Mac
Date: 12 Nov 02 - 10:59 AM

THANK YOU, for all the responses. The Burke version is almost exactly like the one my Aunt would sing to us as we drove from Florida up to North Carolina. She would sing, then cry, then we'd cry because she cried, then we would all laugh like crazy people for crying AGAIN to same song we had heard her sing so many times. She died back in 1977 and I'd give just about anything for the chance to have her sing it for my children. Maybe I'll just have to order Ms. Ritchie's version and be thankful for that.

Thanks again to everybody who helped out.


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Subject: RE: Origins: 'The Orphan's Lament'
From: kytrad (Jean Ritchie)
Date: 12 Nov 02 - 07:48 PM

GuestQ: The Burke version you printed is probably the uncondensed song we heard when small- I actually recognize some of the words and know that I used to sing it that way (more or less), but over the years and many singings it got naturally "honed down" to the elements of the story- I guess. People forget, too, and fill in as they can.

Several folks (above)refer to, "Two Little Children" by Jean Ritchie. Should have said, "As sung by Jean Ritchie... It is not BY Jean Ritchie-I never have claimed to have written this! If anything about it shows a copyright sign, it must be for the arrangement. Difinitely just a song we heard from the old folks- Mom, Dad, Grandparents, Great-Grandparents- all the way back to 18---when?

Now, the other song- involving the railroad engineer, we sang also, but it was later, and not as good a song for singing. Begins like this:
A little child on a sickbed lay and death seemed very near;
She was the pride and only child of a railroad engineer.
His duty called him to his work, and his eyes were dim
With the tears he shed as to his wife he said,
Just have two lanterns trimmed.

Chorus:
Just hang a light when I pass tonight; hang it where it can be seen!
If our baby'd dead, then show the red- if she's better, than show the green.

It had two verses- let me know if anyone wants the other.   Jean


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Subject: RE: Origins: 'The Orphan's Lament'
From: GUEST,Godschild4sure@aol.com
Date: 13 Dec 03 - 01:49 AM

My grandmother and I used to sing this song from the time I was about eight years old while she washed and I dried the dishes. We sang the tune different than the way Jean Richie sang it. I could not remember all the words because I went too many years without singing it. My mother is in a nursing home now and she couldn't remember all the words either. The one grandma and I sang is about the sailor out to sea. This I hope to teach to my children and grandchildren so it will hopefully continue on. What a blessing to find this it brings back very precious memories.


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Subject: RE: Origins: 'The Orphan's Lament'
From: GUEST,rjacobs
Date: 01 Feb 04 - 10:14 AM

Guest Richie,
I read you have the 1899 version of "The Orphans Lament". How do I get in touch with you to get a copy?
Thanks,
R Jacobs


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Subject: RE: Origins: 'The Orphan's Lament'
From: Q (Frank Staplin)
Date: 01 Feb 04 - 02:13 PM

Surely this song is a descendant of "Two Little Ragged Urchins," by Frank Howard, 1885, Harms and Co., NY.
http://levysheetmusic.mse.jhu.edu/cgi-bin/display.pl?record=106.225.001&pages=5
He also wrote "When the Robins Meet Again" (who doesn't remember that song?). Howard was with the McNish, Johnson, and Slavin's Minstrels.

Is there an earlier one still? Bodleian, anyone?

Lyr. Add: Two LITTLE RAGGED URCHINS
Frank Howard, 1885

Two little ragged urchins,
One six, the other eight,
Trudged hand and hand together,
While wintry hours grew late.
Within her tiny basket,
She kept her scanty store.
A bunch of tear-stained papers,
Beneath his arm he bore.
The tears were slowly falling,
A-down faces sad;
Their forms were pinched and trembling,
So thinly were they clad.
Fast, fast the snow descended,
And to each passer by,
In accents full of pity,
There came this pleading cry;

Chorus:
Please, Mister, please Sir, buy something do,
Papers or matches,
We've sold very few,
Father and mother are both of them dead,
Help us to get just a morsel of bread!

Two little ragged urchins,
One six, the other eight,
Wandered along so weary,
Far in the night so late.
No hearts for them had pity,
In all that city's crowd,
The snow kept weaving 'round them
Its white and chilly shroud.
They found them in the morning,
But life had nearly fled;
Upon her brother's bosom
Was laid her childish head,
But ere their forms they lifted,
Scarce louder than a sigh,
From little lips so pallid,
There fell this pleading cry-

Chorus:

(sniffle, sob!)


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Subject: RE: Origins: 'The Orphan's Lament'
From: GUEST,Mary
Date: 25 Aug 04 - 11:20 PM

My grandmother also sang this song to my mother, then my mother to us when we were children. My Granny died at age 93, my mother is now 76 and I am 50. Just this week my Mother, my aunt and I were having a three way phone conversation (singing) trying to remember all the words to this song between the three of us, and we all ended up crying, me because I can remember mama singing it and they, because they were remembering their mama singing it. I am so glad to have found the words, the version that I found is the exact one they sang, we couldn't remember the part that connected to Jim's five years and I'm only seven. So glad to have found this site!


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Subject: RE: Origins: 'The Orphan's Lament'
From: GUEST,kaiwaya@juno.com
Date: 25 Oct 04 - 08:34 PM

My Great-Grandma Patterson sang this song to her kids in the 1920's.
I thought maybe her family brought it with them from Appalachia into central KY. I'm just speculating. My Grandma tought me a similar version to the 1953 Burke one. I've never heard the Richie version.
I can't believe I finally found people who have heard of this song!
Greg


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Subject: RE: Origins: 'The Orphan's Lament'
From: GUEST
Date: 21 Dec 04 - 07:56 PM

I can't tell you how vindicated I feel! Thanks to you folks posting info on this site, my children (and wife) now know that I was NOT making up the lyrics to this sad song (Two Little Children.) My little ones used to bawl when I sang this to them, then they grew up. Now that can not hear it with out laughing hysterically...does anyone understand this???


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Subject: RE: Origins: 'The Orphan's Lament'
From: GUEST
Date: 11 Jan 05 - 06:57 PM

My wonderous thanks for the existance of this site and the community created around a long beloved.

   My grandmother sang this song, learned in her youth in the early 1900s. Her version was very similar to the Burke '53 version.

   In the fall of 2004, my brother discovered a cassette tape recorded at xmas, 1976, with the family all singing and playing music together. There were several songs with grandma singing alone, her voice still fine despite being in her 70s.
    The sang what she called The Two Little Orphans and the Blind Child and some others.

    Very meaningful for us to find that recording.
    In checking out this site, I realized she forgot a few words, or trimmed them to fit her style.

    Thank you all for this.


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Subject: RE: Origins: 'The Orphan's Lament'
From: GUEST,harrisofiowa@yahoo.com
Date: 19 Mar 05 - 12:43 AM

I have been searching for this song for a long time. My father would sing it on road trips. We always knew it as "two little orphans"

Please, if anyone know of a recorded version of this song, email me at harrisofiowa@yahoo.com


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Subject: RE: Origins: 'The Orphan's Lament'
From: Q (Frank Staplin)
Date: 19 Mar 05 - 03:40 PM

Two versions are available at the Racord Lady. Listen and download 'for free.'
Requests 2, Dolly Parton, and Requests 11, Doc Williams Record lady


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Subject: RE: Origins: 'The Orphan's Lament'
From: GUEST,Ardis Noyes Rettich
Date: 01 Aug 05 - 12:40 AM

Hi,

Is anyone familiar with a song that begins "I've no mother now to kiss me when I go to bed at night"? Thanks. Ardis


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Subject: RE: Origins: 'The Orphan's Lament'
From: Dave'sWife
Date: 01 Aug 05 - 12:07 PM

woa - is kytrad really Jean Ritchie?

>bows down<

I am not worthy!

Amazing the people you meet on Mudcat


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Subject: RE: Origins: 'The Orphan's Lament'
From: GUEST,Nan
Date: 17 Sep 07 - 01:02 AM

I can't believe I can finally read some information about this song. My mother used to sing it to me (33 years old now), her father (died in 1968) sang it to her, my great grand father sang it to him (died at 90 yrs old in 1981). I don't know where he learned it.

There are some differences in the song but I put that off to the fact that it's a folk song. In the song, in our family, there was no captain for a father and the angels made room for the children in heaven with Mama that night.


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Subject: RE: Origins: 'The Orphan's Lament'
From: GUEST,Bob Coltman
Date: 17 Sep 07 - 07:29 PM

The other song kytrad mentioned is the classic railroader's "Red and Green Signal Lights," the title under which it was recorded by Grayson and Whitter for Victor July 31, 1928. Also recorded by others including Vernon Dalhart, Arthur Fields, Carson Robison and later Hank Snow and Brook Benton.

It was original written as "Just Set a Light" in 1896 by Henry V. Neal, with music by the great composer Gussie Davis who wrote so many songs that have entered or nearly entered tradition.

It's in the DT as "Child of the Railroad Engineer." Link: (oh please make a blicky ... but it probably won't ... I seem to have no luck with those no matter how closely I follow the directions) :-)

http://www.mudcat.org/@displaysong.cfm?SongID=6045

Bob


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Subject: RE: Origins: 'The Orphan's Lament'
From: GUEST,Michael 's Little Girl
Date: 14 Jan 08 - 06:15 PM

I remember this song from my childhood in the 1950's. My dad sang it to me often. I sang it to my children and now my grandchildren. In 2003 while in Ireland in the Rings of Kerry i found a little music shop and inquired about the song, they knew it right away! I wasn't sure when or where my dad had heard it but it must have been passed down from his family. I couldn't ask dad anymore because he had Alzhemier's and was in a nursing home. On one visit shortly before his death, I sang it to him. Somewhere deep down in what was left of his memory I must have triggered something because he looked at me and a tear ran down his face. (I hope it wasn't my singing, but the song that made him react). I am so glad to have found the version that he sang ...about the life-saving captain... Sites like this one help to keep traditions and memories alive...Thank you so much.


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Subject: RE: Origins: 'The Orphan's Lament'
From: GUEST
Date: 24 Aug 09 - 08:32 PM

i have been looking for this song for a long time my mom use sang this to all of us back when we where little my mom would have us all crying, but we would still beg her to sing it again ..........thanks, ruthann


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Subject: RE: Origins: 'The Orphan's Lament'
From: Janie
Date: 24 Aug 09 - 09:37 PM

I don't know if this is a related song or not. It is from my grandfather's "New Baptist Hymnal", which has no music, just the words.   

Pawpaw was a song leader at the services for many years. It was one of two 'words only' hymnals his United Baptist congregation used, the other being "The Sweet Songster." Both of them include ballads with a religious theme in addition to hymns. United Baptists and Old Regular Baptist congregations were and are common in eastern Kentucky. Pawpaw was born and raised at Flat Gap, outside of Paintsville, which is in the same general region of the state that Jean hails from, so I am wondering if the songs might be loosely connected.

I am copying it exactly as it is printed, including punctuation.

"The Orphaned Girl"
No. 29 in The New Baptist Hymnal

"No home, no home," cried a little girl
      as she stood in the prince's hall.
Trembling she stood on the marble steps
      And leaned on the polished wall.

Her clothes were thin, and her feet were bare
    And the snow had covered her head.
"Give me a home," she feebly cried'
    "A home, and a bite of bread."

"A father's love I never knew,"
    And tears dropped from her eyes,
"My mother sleeps in a new made grave,
    "'Tis an orphan here tonight."

The night was dark and the snow fell fast,
    As the rich man closed his door;
His proud lips curled as he scornfully said:
    "No home nor bread for the poor."

"I must freeze, I must freeze," the trembling child cried,
    And sank on the steps of the door
To wrap her feet in her tattered dress,
    All covered with sleet and snow.

The hours rolled on and the midnight storm
    rolled on like a funeral knell,
The earth seemed wrapped in a winding sheet
    And the chilly snow still fell.

The rich man slept on his velvet couch
    And dreamed of his silver and gold,
While the orphan lay on a bed of snow.
    And murmured, "so cold, so cold."

When the morning dawned the little girl
    Still lay at the rich man's door,
But her soul had fled to its home above,
    Where there's room and bred (sic) for the poor.

No more she stood at the rich man's door,
    And cried, "so cold, so cold!"
With a crown on her head and a harp in her hand
    She sang in a house of gold.


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Subject: RE: Origins: 'The Orphan's Lament'
From: GUEST,martina :)
Date: 25 Aug 09 - 11:07 AM

can you tell me the exact name of the song and of the person who sings it please so that i can listen to ot on youtube
thanks
:)


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Subject: RE: Origins: 'The Orphan's Lament'
From: GUEST
Date: 14 Feb 11 - 08:56 PM

Dolly Parton

Two Little Orphans


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