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Lyr Add:Thanksgiving Song/Swing the Shining Sickle

In Mudcat MIDIs:
Swing the Shining Sickle [Alice Riley & Jessie Gaynor] (from Music Far and Near, Silver Burdett, 1956)


GUEST,Chris 15 May 04 - 09:46 AM
Q (Frank Staplin) 15 May 04 - 10:16 AM
Q (Frank Staplin) 15 May 04 - 10:27 AM
katlaughing 15 May 04 - 12:22 PM
GUEST 15 May 04 - 03:06 PM
Q (Frank Staplin) 16 May 04 - 02:36 PM
AllisonA(Animaterra) 16 May 04 - 05:57 PM
GUEST,MMario 17 May 04 - 09:57 AM
GUEST,Elise 28 May 04 - 04:39 PM
GUEST 16 Nov 07 - 01:50 AM
GUEST,leeneia 16 Nov 07 - 09:16 AM
Jim Dixon 17 Nov 07 - 01:54 PM
GUEST,Jed 16 Jul 08 - 10:57 AM
GUEST,John 02 Nov 08 - 09:49 PM
AllisonA(Animaterra) 03 Nov 08 - 08:36 AM
GUEST 18 Nov 08 - 06:50 AM
GUEST 09 Dec 08 - 01:52 PM
Jim Dixon 11 Dec 08 - 06:33 PM
Joe Offer 11 Dec 08 - 06:43 PM
clueless don 12 Dec 08 - 10:43 AM
GUEST,Elizabeth 15 Mar 10 - 09:58 PM
Jim Dixon 17 Mar 10 - 05:59 PM
GUEST 17 Oct 10 - 08:52 PM
AllisonA(Animaterra) 17 Oct 10 - 09:01 PM
GUEST,Thanks for posting this! 05 Nov 10 - 02:45 PM
GUEST 13 Dec 10 - 10:43 AM
GUEST,SusanD 27 Jan 13 - 12:27 PM
GUEST,Terry Fleming, Leakesville, MS 11 Nov 13 - 08:34 PM
GUEST,GUEST, Dutch Souder, Maryland 04 Jul 14 - 04:03 PM
GUEST 20 Jul 16 - 10:52 PM
GUEST,Pam Y 05 May 17 - 10:03 PM
Jim Dixon 07 May 17 - 11:09 PM
AllisonA(Animaterra) 31 Oct 17 - 06:58 PM
Nigel Parsons 01 Nov 17 - 04:18 AM
GUEST 22 May 18 - 04:18 PM
leeneia 24 May 18 - 10:53 AM
Joe Offer 26 May 18 - 01:19 AM
AllisonA(Animaterra) 26 May 18 - 04:19 PM
McGrath of Harlow 27 May 18 - 06:50 PM
leeneia 28 May 18 - 09:24 AM
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Subject: RE: School Songbook Index PermaThread
From: GUEST,Chris
Date: 15 May 04 - 09:46 AM

Hello:

A friend of mine has asked me to locate the composer of the "Thanksgiving Song". The first line is "Swing the shining Sickle." If anyone would be willing to help it would certainly be appreciated. My friend is an older women who lives alone and is unable to find the information for herself. If you know who the author is would you please email the information to me at chris.peake@sympatico.ca.

All the Best
Chris
I moved this message here from another thread - e-mail sent to requestor.
-Joe Offer-


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Subject: RE: School Songbook Index PermaThread
From: Q (Frank Staplin)
Date: 15 May 04 - 10:16 AM

Swing the shining sickle is the title- Words Alice C. D. Riley, music by Jessie L. Gaynor.


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Subject: Lyr Add: SWING THE SHINING SICKLE (Riley & Gaynor)
From: Q (Frank Staplin)
Date: 15 May 04 - 10:27 AM

SWING THE SHINING SICKLE
(Words by Alice C. D. Riley, music by Jessie L. Gaynor)

Swing the shining sickle,
Cut the ripened grain,
Flash it in the sunlight,
Swing it once again.
Tie the golden grain-heads
Into shining sheaves,
Beautiful their colors.
As the autumn leaves.

Pick the rosy apples,
Pack away with care,
Gather in the corn-ears,
Gleaming ev'rywhere.
Now the fruits are gathered,
All the grains are in,
Nuts are in the attic,
Corn is in the bin.

Loudly blows the north wind,
Through the shiv'ring trees,
Bare are all the branches,
Fallen all the leaves.
Gathered is the harvest
For another year,
Now our day of gladness,
Thanksgiving Day is here.


From "Music Far and Near," Music for Living Book Four, James L. Mursell et al., Silver Burdett Co., 1962, p. 161 with music.

Click to play


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: Swing the Shining Sickle
From: katlaughing
Date: 15 May 04 - 12:22 PM

Beautiful, thanks for posting it, Q.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: Swing the Shining Sickle
From: GUEST
Date: 15 May 04 - 03:06 PM

Thank you so much for finding this information. My friend has been searching for months.

All the Best
Chris


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: Swing the Shining Sickle
From: Q (Frank Staplin)
Date: 16 May 04 - 02:36 PM

Who were Jessie L. Gaynor and Alice C. D. Riley?
In 1895, they wrote "Songs of the Child World," published in 1897 by the John Church Company.
Some of the lyrics of songs from that book are given at this website (scroll down to the title and click on 'Print the words' for text; The tunes and chords are linked below that: Songs of the Child World


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: Swing the Shining Sickle
From: AllisonA(Animaterra)
Date: 16 May 04 - 05:57 PM

Oh, my goodness, I haven't heard this in 35 years or more! Thanks, all!
Allison


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: Swing the Shining Sickle
From: GUEST,MMario
Date: 17 May 04 - 09:57 AM

Can anyone post the tune?
    Q sent me a scan, MMario. I posted the MIDI this afternoon.
    -Joe Offer-


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: Swing the Shining Sickle
From: GUEST,Elise
Date: 28 May 04 - 04:39 PM

Omgosh! I sang this song, as a solo, when I was in the 3rd or 4th grade in Elgin, Oklahoma in 1960.. It came to mind today while driving my 84 year old mother to the store. She remembered it when I began to sing what words I could still remember. I said I was going to see if it could be found on the computer..though I was just sure that it couldn't.... Well, thanks so very much ! This was great !!


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: Swing the Shining Sickle
From: GUEST
Date: 16 Nov 07 - 01:50 AM

I sang this song at Devereux Grammar School in the 50's. I have always loved the tune as well as the words. I grew up in middle Georgia.   Sandra Clarke


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: Swing the Shining Sickle
From: GUEST,leeneia
Date: 16 Nov 07 - 09:16 AM

Thanks for posting, and Guest, thanks for bringing this thread back up. This is a welcome addition to my harvest songs.

The tune, though. With those half-steps, it is no surprise that it was written in 1895, when Tin Pan Alley was revelling in the black keys. I believe I'll compose an alternate tune which is more friendly to chord players.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: Swing the Shining Sickle
From: Jim Dixon
Date: 17 Nov 07 - 01:54 PM

Here's the catalog data from The Indiana University Sheet Music Collections:
    Title: Thanksgiving song
    Title: Swing the shining sickle
    Composer: Gaynor, Jessie L., 1863-1921
    Arranger: Schaum, John W.
    Publisher: Belwin, Inc.
    Place of publication: Rockville Centre, NY
    Date of publication: 1954
    Call Number: M1 .D48 Box: 238 Item: 025
    Performance Medium: Piano and Voice (with lyrics)
    First Line: Swing the shining sickle, cut the ripened grain,
    Genre: Popular song
    Subject term: Thanksgiving
It's odd that the publication date is 1954 when the composer died in 1921. This might mean it was the second time the song was published, owing to some sort of revival of popularity.

I also found the following interesting quote, in "Freedom Under Fire: U.S. Civil Liberties in Times of War" by Michael Linfield, 1990:
    [In 1963] The Los Angeles Herald and Express (later the Los Angeles Herald-Examiner) printed a series of editorials urging that thirteen schoolbooks be banned as un-American. The newspaper even found one music book subversive, as it contained a song entitled "Swing the Shining Sickle." As it turned out, the song was not a hymn of praise to the Soviet Union; it had been written twenty years before the Russian revolution as a Thanksgiving harvest song.
Apparently this was a famous incident, mentioned in several other books, but I couldn't get a long quote from any of them.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: Swing the Shining Sickle
From: GUEST,Jed
Date: 16 Jul 08 - 10:57 AM

We sang this as a Hymn in choir at the Episcopal Church in Hingham, Mass in 1957-59 at Thanksgiving. The tune and lyrics have haunted me since then. Thanks for posting them.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: Swing the Shining Sickle
From: GUEST,John
Date: 02 Nov 08 - 09:49 PM

We used to sing this song every Thanksgiving season when I was attending the elementary school which was located on Western Michigan University's campus--back in the late 30's and early 40's. Thanks for publishing it. Sure brings back memories. I'm going to use it with a group of Senior Citizens I meet with. It will be interesting to see how many of them have heard of it.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: Swing the Shining Sickle
From: AllisonA(Animaterra)
Date: 03 Nov 08 - 08:36 AM

Guest,Jed, I, too, sang this song in Hingham, Mass. at St. John's Episcopal Church, but 15 years later! Was Richard Smith the choir director then?

Such memories!


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: Swing the Shining Sickle
From: GUEST
Date: 18 Nov 08 - 06:50 AM

alice sheppard
I sang this song back in the '30s at Pleasant Hill School in Oklahoma City.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: Swing the Shining Sickle
From: GUEST
Date: 09 Dec 08 - 01:52 PM

We sang this song in grammar school in the early 1960s in Jacksonville, Florida. It was hard to relate to the song since there wasn't much grain to harvest in Florida, especially if you lived in a city. Did farmers still use sickles in the 60s? I guess I remember the song because singing about harvesting grain seemed so odd.

I could connect with the song "Shrimp boats is a coming" a lot better. When I'd go to the beach I'd look for people dancing when I saw a shrimp boat.

The textbooks we read had stories about trains where cinders from the locomotives blew into passenger car windows, another topic that was hard to relate to by the 1960s.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: Swing the Shining Sickle
From: Jim Dixon
Date: 11 Dec 08 - 06:33 PM

Come to think of it, I've never seen anyone use a sickle either, but I remember that when I was a kid there was a sickle hanging on a nail in the garage. It didn't shine; it was too rusty. I suppose it was one of the tools my father had hung onto from his youth. He was a thrifty man, and if he thought something might be useful someday, he kept it. (He grew up on a farm, but moved to the city during WW2, when he was already too old to be drafted. I was born in 1947.)

We also had a pair of manual (i.e. non-electric) sheep shears. He did use those, to trim the grass around the edge of the sidewalk. After he got a more efficient pair of grass clippers, the sheep shears also retired to their spot, hanging on a nail in the garage, and served no further purpose except to educate an occasional child who asked "what's that?"

My father died in 1985. When my mother moved to a nursing home a few years ago, I looked at everything she left behind, picking out things to save, but the sickle, the sheep shears, and a lot of other old stuff had already disappeared.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: Swing the Shining Sickle
From: Joe Offer
Date: 11 Dec 08 - 06:43 PM

I used a sickle quite a bit for clearing grass in my younger days, growing up in a semi-rural area in Wisconsin. I also used a grass whip or a scythe when the area was too small for a tractor and too high for a lawn mower. Weed-eaters do a job better nowadays.

-Joe-


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: Swing the Shining Sickle
From: clueless don
Date: 12 Dec 08 - 10:43 AM

The tune that is played when I click the "Click to play" link above (under the 15 May 04 - 10:27 AM posting by Q) sure isn't the tune that I remember for this song. I think I learned it in school. The tune I remember is rather similar to the tune of "Sink the Bismarck".

Don


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: Swing the Shining Sickle
From: GUEST,Elizabeth
Date: 15 Mar 10 - 09:58 PM

I sang this song in 2nd grade in a tiny northeastern PA town in
1967. Like other writers, I have thought of this song so often
over these many years.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: Swing the Shining Sickle
From: Jim Dixon
Date: 17 Mar 10 - 05:59 PM

Special Day: Programs and Selections for the Schools of Michigan (State Superintendent of Public Instruction, 1908), page 36, where it is called THANKSGIVING SONG.
[The list of "special days" in that book is interesting:
    LABOR DAY
    PIONEER DAY
    THANKSGIVING DAY
    CHRISTMAS
    LINCOLN DAY
    WASHINGTON AND LOWELL DAY
    LONGFELLOW DAY
    ARBOR DAY
    MEMORIAL DAY
[I never heard of some of those days.]


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: Swing the Shining Sickle
From: GUEST
Date: 17 Oct 10 - 08:52 PM

Awesome.. finding this post.. My daddy passed away in May of 08' and y Momma in Feb. 09' at ages 85 and 83. It's fall again and nostalgia and melancholy are setting in. The only words I could remember were nuts are in the attic corn is in the bin. So glad to have found the complete song and origin. Thanks so much


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: Swing the Shining Sickle
From: AllisonA(Animaterra)
Date: 17 Oct 10 - 09:01 PM

I never saw Jim's post- yes, I agree, so wonderful to see those words!


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: Swing the Shining Sickle
From: GUEST,Thanks for posting this!
Date: 05 Nov 10 - 02:45 PM

I've been reading people's posts, and am so happy to hear that so many people knew this song! I learned it in the 1940s in either Tulsa or Oklahoma City, OK, and was happy to hear my mother say at the time that she also had learned it when she was in school. She was born in 1905, so I'm guessing 1915 or so when she learned it.
I've just finished sending the words--and so happy to find the melody as well--to my family including my 9- and 10-year-old granddaughters. I think it's a great illustration of how hard people had to work, in the early part of the 20th century and before, to get the harvest in. It's clear that they didn't think of Thanksgiving only as "Turkey Day" and "Game Day"!!!

I'd welcome e-mails from any of you other posters!

AliceW
Albuquerque, NM


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: Swing the Shining Sickle
From: GUEST
Date: 13 Dec 10 - 10:43 AM

Thanksgiving has just passed but I remembered this Thanksgiving Song from long ago. I would sing this every Thanksgiving with my mother who has since passed. I couldn't remember all the words this year so I was so happy to have found them on this site. I printed out the words and music so we all can sing this song again! Thank you so much!


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: Swing the Shining Sickle
From: GUEST,SusanD
Date: 27 Jan 13 - 12:27 PM

I just loved this song when I was in grade school - it was The ONE I always requested. The lyrics I found gave the date of 1956, and that would be just right; I was in 3rd grade that year.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: Swing the Shining Sickle
From: GUEST,Terry Fleming, Leakesville, MS
Date: 11 Nov 13 - 08:34 PM

For some reason, this song has haunted me for the past 2 or 3 weeks. I guess it was because autumn is here and I have had so many nostalgic feelings watching the changing of seasons.    I learned this song in grammar school in MS, and could only remember the first verse. So glad to be able to read the lyrics in its entirety.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: Swing the Shining Sickle
From: GUEST,GUEST, Dutch Souder, Maryland
Date: 04 Jul 14 - 04:03 PM

The song often goes through my rapidly-aging mind as I sang it in elementary school in Washington, DC (Takoma Elementary) in kindergarten and first grade in the 1940s. The school put on a Thanksgiving play and our first grade sang this while acting out harvesting wheat. Thanks for bringing a memory back to reality.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: Swing the Shining Sickle
From: GUEST
Date: 20 Jul 16 - 10:52 PM

I iearned this song in 1944 at the Garretford Grade School in Drexel Hill PE. Thank you, Miss Parker!


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: Swing the Shining Sickle
From: GUEST,Pam Y
Date: 05 May 17 - 10:03 PM

Since I learned it in grade school 50 years ago, I have been singing this song! I dearly love it and drove the music teacher crazy begging to sing it. As a grownup I never could find anyone else who heard of it. I became a classroom music teacher myself and I always look through old donated music textbooks to see if I can find it, but no luck so far. Tonight I was singing it and decided to Google the lyrics, and imagine my delight when I came across this thread with all you people who love it as much as I do!!!


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: Swing the Shining Sickle
From: Jim Dixon
Date: 07 May 17 - 11:09 PM

I found an older source, probably the original one, viewable through Google Books. This one has musical notation for voice and piano.

From Songs of the Child-world, Vol. 1, words by Alice C. D. Riley, music by Jessie L. Gaynor (Cincinnati: The John Church Company, Nov., 1897), page 67, where it is called "Thanksgiving Song."

Lyrics are identical to those posted by Q (Frank Staplin) back on 15 May 2004.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add:Thanksgiving Song/Swing the Shining Sickle
From: AllisonA(Animaterra)
Date: 31 Oct 17 - 06:58 PM

One of the finest types of Muscat thread are ones like these, where folks from all over stumble across a thread such as this because they vaguely remember a song from their childhood. For me, seeing all these posts from GUESTS all over the US makes me feel as though we've all been singing this song together, for all these years.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add:Thanksgiving Song/Swing the Shining Sickle
From: Nigel Parsons
Date: 01 Nov 17 - 04:18 AM

The title of the thread reminds me of a 'filk' I heard (which I can't currently source online). The subject matter was Getafix (the Druid from the Asterix stories). The song?
"Oh them golden sickles" ttto "Oh dem golden slippers"
It told of the Druids going off into the woods to collect mistletoe, using sickles of gold.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add:Thanksgiving Song/Swing the Shining Sickle
From: GUEST
Date: 22 May 18 - 04:18 PM

I don't find the vocals or a video with the lyrics, I keep getting a different song.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add:Thanksgiving Song/Swing the Shining Sickle
From: leeneia
Date: 24 May 18 - 10:53 AM

Hi, Guest. You're right. I can't find the melody on the Internet either. However, I did find a Mudcat MIDI which wouldn't play. So I saved it to my music program and made a new MIDI of it.

I'll send it in, and with any luck, a link will soon appear here which you can click on and hear the melody. I warn you, it is in E-flat and has a big range.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add:Thanksgiving Song/Swing the Shining Sickle
From: Joe Offer
Date: 26 May 18 - 01:19 AM

I'm glad you noticed that problem, Leeneia. All of our Mudcat MIDI files seem to be displaying as text. I've asked Max to check it out. I sure hope he can fix it. In the meantime, all of the MIDI files at my own Website are still working. Leeneia made a new MIDI of "Swing the Shining Sickle":


Click to play (joeweb)


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add:Thanksgiving Song/Swing the Shining Sickle
From: AllisonA(Animaterra)
Date: 26 May 18 - 04:19 PM

How wonderful! Brings back such memories.

I have my computer set to open midi files in Sibelius, so I could listen and sing along.

Thanks so much!


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add:Thanksgiving Song/Swing the Shining Sickle
From: McGrath of Harlow
Date: 27 May 18 - 06:50 PM

One Thanksgiving Song that everyone knows, but sings out of season, is Jingle Bells.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add:Thanksgiving Song/Swing the Shining Sickle
From: leeneia
Date: 28 May 18 - 09:24 AM

I'm glad you like it, Allison. So nice to hear that somebody is singing because of my MIDI.


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