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Lyr Add: Poor Little Joe

Related threads:
Lyr Req: Little Joe (Not The Wrangler) (14)
Chord Req: 'Poor Little Joe' (5)
Lyr Req: Little Joe / Darling Little Joe (12)
Tune Req: Little Joe and/or Little Blossom (5)
Lyr Req: Poor Little Joe (4) (closed)
Lyr Req: Little Joe, Little Joe (2)


roro 09 Jan 99 - 01:22 AM
11 Jan 99 - 04:30 AM
Les 21 Jan 99 - 05:44 AM
GUEST,Utah 26 May 00 - 01:48 PM
katlaughing 26 May 00 - 04:35 PM
Sandy Paton 26 May 00 - 05:11 PM
GUEST,Jennifer (Morrisette) Polzine//08-27-06//Cal 28 Aug 06 - 02:10 AM
Bill D 28 Aug 06 - 10:19 PM
katlaughing 28 Aug 06 - 10:36 PM
GUEST 01 Nov 06 - 02:14 PM
GUEST,Bob Coltman 01 Nov 06 - 04:56 PM
GUEST,Bob Coltman 01 Nov 06 - 05:06 PM
GUEST,Bob Coltman 01 Nov 06 - 05:08 PM
Sandy Paton 02 Nov 06 - 02:23 AM
GUEST,Ron Lush 15 Nov 10 - 05:14 PM
Jim Dixon 18 Nov 10 - 07:42 AM
GUEST,Jean a Londoner 29 Dec 10 - 04:22 AM
Jim Dixon 31 Dec 10 - 11:53 AM
Jim Dixon 31 Dec 10 - 12:20 PM
Jim Dixon 31 Dec 10 - 01:01 PM
Jim Dixon 31 Dec 10 - 07:39 PM
Jim Dixon 01 Jan 11 - 01:11 PM
GUEST,guest 06 Feb 11 - 03:53 PM
GUEST,Tiffany 24 Feb 11 - 01:31 AM
GUEST,Shelley Hendrickson-Simpson 18 Mar 11 - 09:40 PM
GUEST 22 Aug 11 - 01:47 AM
GUEST,Allan Briggs 24 Oct 12 - 05:09 PM
GUEST,Simon Thread 27 Apr 14 - 08:24 PM
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Subject: Lyr Add: POOR LITTLE JOE^^
From: roro
Date: 09 Jan 99 - 01:22 AM

I don't know if you are still looking for the words to Poor Little Joe, but here they are as my dad sang them:

POOR LITTLE JOE

Chorus:
Cold blew the blast and down came the snow-
He had no place to shelter him, and no place to go,
No mother to guide him, in the grave she lie low,
Cast on the cold street was poor little Joe.

As I walked down New York's gay throng
I met a poor boy who was singing a song.
And though he was singing he wanted for bread,
And though he was smiling, he wished himself dead.

A carriage passed by with a lady inside,
she looked on Poor Joe's face and saw that he cried,
and though he was crying, she not even smiled,
but fondly caressed her own little child.
(chorus)

The lights had gone out and the clock had struck one.
Along came a policeman whose day's work was done.
You could tell by the footsteps, and his dull heavy tread,
You'd think he was stomping a grave for the dead.
"What is this on the cold, cold ground?"
It was poor little Joe--on the ground he lie low,
With his eyes turned toward heaven, and covered with snow
--Dead on the cold ground was poor little Joe.
(chorus)

A sad song--but it taught me the importance of looking at a person and reading their eyes, paying attention to what they were really saying!


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Subject: RE: Poor Little Joe for ruth. riding
From:
Date: 11 Jan 99 - 04:30 AM

Hi Roro, Absolutely delighted with "Poor little Joe". Had quite given up on it when, lo and behold, your reply came through! It was my grandfather Hull's favourite song, and must have been one he sang during his turns on the music hall as a young man in London. He taught it to me while staying with us during the war after they had been bombed out, and I have forgotten all but the refrain. Many, many thanks. [I think however he would have sung "London" instead of "New York"] Excuse me if this is not the correct channel for thanks, but I could not find your address. Thanks again and all best wishes, Ruth [in Dundee, Scotland]


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Subject: Lyr Add: POOR LITTLE JOE (Earl Johnson)^^
From: Les
Date: 21 Jan 99 - 05:44 AM

This is a song my grandparents who both passed away many years ago sang when I was a child. I found a CD with the recording on Amazon. The album title is "Earl Johnson Complete Recorded Works Volume 1 1927. The Album (DODC-8005)was produced by Document Records and made in Austria. The recording is very scratchy and some words are difficult to understand, but the following is what I could determine.

POOR LITTLE JOE
(from Earl Johnson)

While strolling one night through New York ????
I met a boy he was singing a song
Although he was singing he wanted for bread
Although he was sighing he wished(?) himself dead

I looked on this poor boy out in the snow
He had no place to shelter him and no place to go
No mother to guide him him in the grave she's low
Cast upon the cold night street was poor little Joe

Cold blew the blast and down came the snow
He had no home to shelter and no place to go
No mother to guide him him in the grave she's low
Cast upon the cold night street was poor little Joe

He followed the cab she not even smiled
but gently caressed her own darling child
He followed the mail although it looked odd
For this poor ragged boy forgotten by God.

Cold blew the blast and down came the snow
He had no home to shelter and no place to go
No mother to guide him him in the grave she's low
Cast upon the cold night street was poor little Joe

The night it was dark the clock had struck one
Along came a policeman whose duty was done
You could tell by sound of his ???? heavy tread
??? think he was waking the grave of the dead

Cold blew the blast and down came the snow
He had no home to shelter and no place to go
No mother to guide him him in the grave she's low
Cast upon the cold night street was poor little Joe

He looked on poor boy this is what he said
At a curb on the cold street little Joe he lay dead
His eyes turned to heaven covered with snow
Cast upon the cold night street was poor little Joe

Cold blew the blast and down came the snow
He had no home to shelter and no place to go
No mother to guide him him in the grave she's low
Cast upon the cold night street was poor little Joe


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Subject: RE: Poor Little Joe for ruth. riding
From: GUEST,Utah
Date: 26 May 00 - 01:48 PM

Thank You! Thank You! Thank You! I have wanted these lyrics for nearly 50 years.

Do you know a song which contains the phrase "Granny only left to me the old armchair."?

Please forgive me if this is not the place to express thanks or request additional lyrics. I am new at this.


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Subject: RE: Poor Little Joe for ruth. riding
From: katlaughing
Date: 26 May 00 - 04:35 PM

Guest, Utah, nothing to forgive, that's just fine what you did and Welcome! to the Mudcat Cafe! I see you've started a thread about your other question, that's good.

katlaughing


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Subject: RE: Poor Little Joe for ruth. riding
From: Sandy Paton
Date: 26 May 00 - 05:11 PM

Arnold Keith Storm, who worked for the postal serice in Mooresville, Indiana, recorded "Poor Little Joe" for Folk-Legacy on his LP, now available as a "custom cassette." His text isn't as complete as these, but his singing is excellent and his version is the one that came to him through his family tradition.

"Granny's Old Arm Chair" is included in two versions on Folk-Legacy's new CD Ballads and Songs of Tradition (CD-125). The first version was collected from a superb old ballad singer on Beech Mountain in North Carolina, Lee Monroe Presnell. He sings it unaccompanied, as he sang every song we collected from him. The second version I recorded from a retired stone quarry worker, fiddler, and songmaker in the Catskill mountains of New York state. He did it with guitar accompaniment, strongly influenced by Bradley Kincaid, I think. Interesting to compare the two "traditional" American approaches to a late 19th century English Music Hall song.

Folk-Legacy's web page is HERE. Remember, a percentage of each Mudcat sale goes back to Max to help keep the Mudcat going.

Sandy Sandy


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Subject: RE: Poor Little Joe for ruth. riding
From: GUEST,Jennifer (Morrisette) Polzine//08-27-06//Cal
Date: 28 Aug 06 - 02:10 AM

I'm SO glad to find all these words! My "big sister" used to sing this song to me and play the guitar back when I was five or six years old (I'm 74 now). She is long dead and so are Mom and Dad and all my other sisters. It was during the depression and we had just moved from Oklahoma to California. There were a lot of sad songs in those days. Thank you, so very much.


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Subject: RE: Poor Little Joe for ruth. riding
From: Bill D
Date: 28 Aug 06 - 10:19 PM

*smile*...I'm glad you looked in, Jennifer. There are a lot of songs and information hidden in these threads.

There were indeed many sad songs back then..I sing a different "Little Joe" song, about a poor, dying boy asking what will happen with his pets and friends after he goes. These songs meant a lot to people.


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Subject: RE: Poor Little Joe for ruth. riding
From: katlaughing
Date: 28 Aug 06 - 10:36 PM

Welcome to the Mudcat, Jennifer. It's stories like yours that make this place so special.

By the by, I just read a novel you might find interesting as it takes place in Kansas during the Depression. It's really beautifully written. Here's the publisher's blurb on The Persian Pickle Club
by Sandra Dallas:

The author of the highly praised Buster Midnight's Cafe returns with a magical new novel about the ties that bind women together through good and bad. It is the 1930s, and hard times have hit Harveyville, Kansas, where the crops are burning up and there's not a job to be found. For Queenie Bean, a young farmwife, the highlight of each week is the gathering of the Persian Pickle Club (named after a favorite cloth pattern), a group of local ladies dedicated to improving their minds, exchanging gossip, and putting their well-honed quilting skills to good use. As Queenie says, "It's funny how quilting draws women together like nothing else." Women her own age are few in Harveyville, so when just-married Rita Ritter arrives in town, Queenie eagerly welcomes her new friend into the club. But Rita, who hails from Denver, is anything but a country girl. With a hankering for a newspaper career, she's far more interested in investigative journalism than she is in sewing, and before long her prying brings her dangerously close to a secret the Pickles have sworn to keep.

All the best,

kat


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Subject: RE: Poor Little Joe for ruth. riding
From: GUEST
Date: 01 Nov 06 - 02:14 PM

I was wondering if anyone could tell me how to find a song my grandmother used to sing to me. I dont know the lyrics but its about a blind girl who's mother is dead. Her father is remarrying. The daughter is in bed and she sees her mother and reaches out to her and the little girl dies..

~Melissa


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Subject: Lyr Add: THE BLIND CHILD'S PRAYER
From: GUEST,Bob Coltman
Date: 01 Nov 06 - 04:56 PM

I'm betting it's

THE BLIND CHILD'S PRAYER

"They tell me, father, that tonight
You wed another bride;
That you will clasp her to the arms,
Where my dear mother died.

''They say her name is Mary too,
The name my mother bore.
But, father, is she kind and true
Like the one you loved before?

"Her picture is hanging on the wall;
Her books are lving near;
There is the harp her fingers touched;
There sits her vacant chair,

''The chair by which I've oft times knelt
To say my evening prayer.
O father, do not bid me come;
I cannot meet her there.

''Now let me kneel down by your side
And to our Saviour pray
That God's right hand will lead you both
Through life's long weary way."

The prayer was answered and the song,
"I'm weary now," she said,
He picked her up all in his arms
And laid her on the bed.

And as he turned to leave the room
One joyful cry was given,
He turned and caught the last sweet smile
The blind child was in heaven.

They buried her by her mother's side
And raised a marble fair;
And on it graved the simple words,
"There'll be no blind ones there."

From Folk Songs from the Southern Highlands, Henry
Collected from Mrs. Emory P.Morrow, AL

Just in case it's not, could it be Charlie Poole's

I CANNOT CALL HER MOTHER (which, however, lacks the blindness)

The marriage rite is over
Although I turn aside
To keep the guests from seeing
The tears I could not hide

I wreathe my face is smiling
And I left my little brother
To greet my father's chosen
But he could not call her mother

She is a fair young creature
With meek and gentle airs
With blue eyes soft and loving
And silk and sunny hair

I know my father gives her
A love he had for another
If she were an angel
I could not call her mother

My father's in the sunshine
Of happy days to come
They have forgot the shadows
That darkened our old home

His heart is no more lonely
But me and little brother
Must still be orphan children
God gives us but one mother


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Subject: Lyr Add: GRANNY'S OLD ARM CHAIR
From: GUEST,Bob Coltman
Date: 01 Nov 06 - 05:06 PM

Re "Granny's Old Arm Chair" above, it is not in the DT but is in the Forum. Frank Crumit did record a version, but it's not of his composition. (Nor is it, as some might assume, a version of Eliza Cooke and Henry Russell's 19th century weeper "The Old Arm Chair"!)

Instead it is an 1878 popular song by John Read (words and music), later claimed in 1880 by Frank S. Carr, perhaps an arranger. Very popular in the Ozarks and in Tennessee/Kentucky.

GRANNY'S OLD ARM CHAIR (the Forum version, not the John Read original). It ought to be in the DT song archive too!

Now, my grandmother she, at the age of 93,
One day in May was taken sick and died,
And after she was dead, the will, of course, was read
By a lawyer as we all stood by his side.
To my brother it was found, she had left a hundred pounds;
The same unto my sister I declare;
But when it came to me, the lawyer said, "I see,
She's left to you the old arm chair."

CHORUS: How they tittered, how they chaffed,
How my brother and my sister laughed,
When they heard the lawyer declare,
"Granny's gone and left to you the old arm chair."

Well, I thought it wasn't fair, but I said I didn't care,
And in the evening took the chair away.
My sister laughed and my brother he chaffed,
Saying, "It will come in useful, John, some day.
When you settle down in life, take unto yourself a wife,
The chair will come in handy I declare.
On a cold and windy night, when the fire's burning bright,
You can snuggle in your old arm chair."

What my brother said was true, for in a year or two,
Sure enough I settled down to married life.
I first a lass did court, then the ring I bought,
And I took her to the church to be my wife.
My wife and me we were as happy as could be,
And in the evening when my work was done,
I never abroad would roam; I'd prefer to stay at home,
Sitting in my old arm chair.

Now one night the chair fell down. When I picked it up I found,
The seat had fallen out upon the floor,
And there to my surprise, lying right before my eyes –
A bunch of notes - five hundred pounds or more.
When my brother heard of this, the fellow I confess,
Went nearly mad with rage and tore his hair,
But I only looked at him, and said unto him,
"Jim, don't you wish you had the old arm chair?"


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Subject: RE: Poor Little Joe for ruth. riding
From: GUEST,Bob Coltman
Date: 01 Nov 06 - 05:08 PM

Sorry, I meant to shape up the chorus and remaining verses above but forgot. Bob


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Subject: RE: Poor Little Joe for ruth. riding
From: Sandy Paton
Date: 02 Nov 06 - 02:23 AM

Arnold Keith Storm of Mooresville, Indiana, mentioned in my above post, also learned "The Blind Child" from his family tradition. It, too, is on his Folk-Legacy recording (now available as a CD) "Take the News to Mother, and Other Songs of a More Sentimental Age" (CD-18). He also does the best "Little Joe, the Wrangler" and "Utah Carl (Carroll)" I've ever heard. Other songs on his CD are: The Boy Who Could Never Come Home, The Dream of the Miner's Child, The Prison Warden's Secret, Take the news to Mother, Two Drummers (My Mother Was a Lady), Little Rosewood Casket, There's a Mother Always Waiting You at Home, Poor Little Joe (mentioned above), Patched Up Old Devil, Jim Blake, Your Wife is Dying, plus two original songs: The Great Explosion and The Sparrow's Question. then he wraps it all up with the wonderful old hymn, Ninety and Nine. Nice flat-picked Gibson guitar and a good singer, too!
    Sandy


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: Poor Little Joe
From: GUEST,Ron Lush
Date: 15 Nov 10 - 05:14 PM

The original was an English song believed to be sung by a gypsy named Noah Smith .A man called by in the camp and wrote the lyrics down .Then scarpered to America . Noah could not read and write and the man change the lyrics so suit American audiences .Noah traveled to America it is believed with his supposed wife although he was married before .
He was going to take legal action but its not been confirmed if he did . Noah would have gone to America in about 1870s.My mother use to sing it to me when she was alive and her father use to come up from the audience to sing it on stage in Portsmouth England .He use to make people weep because he sung it so well.Noah would have been my great great grandfather .

Ron


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: Poor Little Joe
From: Jim Dixon
Date: 18 Nov 10 - 07:42 AM

From an article "Folk-Song of Nebraska and the Central West: A Syllabus" by Louise Pound, in Publications, Vol. 9, No. 3. (Lincoln: Nebraska Academy of Sciences, 1915?), page 120:

6. Poor Little Joe. Fragment.

Cold blew the blast and down came the snow,
With no place to shelter him, nowhere to go,
No mother to guide him, in her grave she lay low,
Died on the cold streets, it was poor little Joe.


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Subject: Lyr Add: POOR LITTLE JOE (trad. London)
From: GUEST,Jean a Londoner
Date: 29 Dec 10 - 04:22 AM

The song Poor Little Joe has been handed down in our family from my Nan who who was born in the 1800's and she learnt it from her dad who lived in London.

POOR LITTLE JOE

In the great streets of London, the city's great throne
There was a poor boy who was singing a song
You could tell by his voice that he wanted for bread,
And tho' he was singing he wished himself dead.

Cold blew the blast, down fell the snow,
No place for shelter and nowhere to go,
No mother to guide him, in her grave she lie low,
And caste in this white world was poor little Joe.

A carriage drove by with a lady inside,
She fondly caressed her own boy to her side,
Joe followed this carriage for more than a mile,
But the Lady looked out and just gave him a smile.
Oh Ma'am, it is hard, the poor boy he cried,
I've no place for shelter and nowhere to go,
I've no mother to guide me, in her grave she lies low,
And caste in this white world was poor little Joe.

The lights had gone out, and the clock had struck one,
Down came a policeman, his duty was done,
Yo could tell it was a policeman by his dark heavy tread,
And he was out searching for the starving and dead.

When Oh, what is this, the policeman he cried,
Poor little Joe on the doorstep had died,
With his face turned to Heaven all covered in snow
He died of starvation and nowhere to go.


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Subject: Lyr Add: POOR LITTLE JOE (from Red Patterson)
From: Jim Dixon
Date: 31 Dec 10 - 11:53 AM

I found this recording at YouTube:


POOR LITTLE JOE
As recorded by Red Patterson's Piedmont Log Rollers, Victor 35874, 12-Aug-1927.

While strolling along through New York's gay throng,
I met a poor boy who was singing a song.
Although he was hungry, he wanted for bread,
But Joe was a-smiling and wished himself dead.

I spoke to this poor boy out in the snow.
He had no home for a shelter and no place to go.
No mother to guide him; in the grave she is low.
Cast in the cold street was poor little Joe.

A carriage came by with a lady inside.
She looked out on Joe's face and saw that he cried.
He followed the carriage; she not even smiled,
But fondly caressing her own darling child.

Cold blew the wind and down came the snow.
Cast in the cold street and nowhere to go,
No mother to guide him; in the grave she is low.
Cast in the cold street was poor little Joe.

Way late in the night, the clock had struck one,
Along came a policeman whose duty was done.
You'd think by the sound of his dull heavy tread,
That he was a-seeking the grave of the dead.

"Oh, what have I found?" this policeman he said.
It was poor little Joe; on the ground he lay dead.
With his eyes turned to heaven all covered in snow,
Died in the cold street did poor little Joe.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: Poor Little Joe
From: Jim Dixon
Date: 31 Dec 10 - 12:20 PM

WorldCat.org says that the University of Alabama has the sheet music, described thus:

POOR LITTLE JOE
Words, Frank Dumont. Music, Killian Jordan.
Boston: Oliver Ditson & Co., ©1873.


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Subject: Lyr Add: POOR LITTLE JOE (from Bodleian, 1883?)
From: Jim Dixon
Date: 31 Dec 10 - 01:01 PM

From the Bodleian broadside collection, Harding B 13(226):

[Note: The other song on the same sheet describes deaths due to the collapse of a factory chimney in Bradford on Dec. 28, 1882. This suggests early 1883 as a probable date for the broadside.]


POOR LITTLE JOE

1. While strolling one night thro' London's gay throng,
I met a poor boy; he was singing a song.
I could see by his face that he wanted for bread.
Although he was singing, he wished himself dead.
I spoke to that poor boy out in the snow.
He'd no place of shelter and nowhere to go,
No mother to guide him; in the grave she lies low.
Cast on the wide world was poor little Joe.

CHORUS: In the streets he will wander, forgot by the gay.
With a tear in his eye he will kneel down and pray.
He'd no friend but his maker; his parents were dead.
Poor Joe he was dying by inches for bread.

2. A carriage rolled by with a lady inside.
She gazed on poor Joe her own darling child.
Joe followed the carriage; she had not one smile,
But I gazed on his face and I saw that he cried.
As I looked at this boy, I thought it was odd.
Is this poor ragged urchin forgotten by God?
Then I saw by the gaslight which shone on the snow,
The pale deathly features of poor little Joe.

3. Those that were wealthy, they heeded him not.
Poor Joe the street Arab, how sad was his lot!
He knew not his father; he had died long ago.
Such was the sufferings of poor little Joe.
I spoke to him kindly; it made his heart glad.
Although he was ragged, he was grateful, poor lad.
With tears in his eyes, he was thinking, I know,
Of his mother and father, that poor boy Joe.

4. The light had gone out; the clock had struck one,
When home came a policeman whose duty was done,
And it seemed by the sound of his dull heavy tread
As though he was seeking the starving and dead.
"Oh, what is the matter?" the people they said.
It was poor little Joe; on the steps he lay dead.
With his face turned to heaven, all covered with snow,
The angels are waiting for poor little Joe.

[Verse 2 seems garbled to me. For one thing, it doesn't follow the rhyme scheme of the other 3 verses. Also, the line "She gazed on poor Joe her own darling child" seems to contradict the earlier information that Joe's mother was dead. Other versions of the story say the woman in the carriage paid scant attention to Joe because she was preoccupied with her own child, presumably warm and well fed, in the carriage with her. This makes more sense, but the point is lost in the present version.

[Another thing bothers me: The narrator injects himself into the story: "I spoke to that poor boy"—so why didn't he help Joe?]


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Subject: Lyr Add: POOR LITTLE JOE (from Bodleian)
From: Jim Dixon
Date: 31 Dec 10 - 07:39 PM

Another broadside, Harding B 20(4), "between 1858 and 1885."

This one is well written, but I don't think it's the origin of the others, just a different retelling of the same story.


POOR LITTLE JOE.
Written and Composed by G. A. St. Albyn, the Great Vocal Comedian Author and Composer.

1. Cold, cold was the night. The snow had been falling.
The wind it was whistling so shrill thro' the street,
When on a doorstep a poor lad was lying,
No cap on his head, no shoes on his feet.
The poor little fellow so sadly was crying,
Pitifully sobbing, really as tho'
His little heart nearly was breaking.
Who wouldn't pity him, poor little Joe?

CHORUS: A poor little fellow sadly was crying,
The tears from his eyes sank deep in the snow.
Alas! there was no one to soothe him when dying,
No one to pity him, poor little Joe.

2. Colder and colder the night it was growing,
The wind, oh how bitter, the snow still fell fast.
The poor little lad on the doorstep was sinking.
It seemed just as if each breath was his last.
This poor little fellow, his form was so slender,
Where were his parents that he should die so?
Alas! they were dead. He too was dying.
Who wouldn't pity him, poor little Joe?

3. 'Twas morning when dead on the doorstep they found him.
His cheeks were so pale—his lips, oh so blue.
The snow like a white sheet lay all around him.
They bore him away. Alas! there were few
To watch where they laid his poor little body.
None shed a tear on the form they laid low,
But now in heaven surely he's resting.
Alas! there are many like poor little Joe.


[Note: two other songs are marked "To the tune of: Poor little Joe." The older is dated (by the Bodleian) 1877, indicating a song by that name was already familiar by that time.]


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Subject: Lyr Add: POOR LITTLE JOE (Philadelphia broadside)
From: Jim Dixon
Date: 01 Jan 11 - 01:11 PM

From a broadside at the Center for Popular Music at Middle Tennessee State University:


A. W. AUNER, SONG PUBLISHER & PRINTER,
Tenth and Race Sts., Philadelphia, Pa.


POOR LITTLE JOE

[1] While strolling one night through New York's gay throng,
I met a poor boy, he was singing a song,
Although he was singing, he wanted for bread,
And though he was smiling he wished himself dead.
I spoke to this poor boy, out in the snow,
He had no home to shelter him, no place to go,
No mother to guide him—in the grave she is low,
Cast on the cold street was poor little Joe.

CHORUS: Cold blew the blast, down came the snow,
He had no home to shelter him, no place to go,
No mother to guide him--in the grave she is low,
Cast on the cold street was poor little Joe.

[2] A carriage passed by with a lady inside,
I looked on poor Joe's face and saw that he cried,
He followed the carriage, she not even smiled.
But fondly caressing her own darling child.
I looked on this waif, I thought it was odd—
Is this poor, ragged urchin, forgotten by God?
And I saw by the lamp-light that shone on the snow,
The pale deadly features of poor little Joe.

[3] The light had gone out, the clock had struck one,
Along came a policeman whose duty was done,
I could tell by the sound of his dull heavy tread,
You'd think he was sinking the graves of the dead.
Oh! what is this? the policeman he said,
It was poor little Joe, on the ground he lay dead,
With his eyes turned to heaven, covered with snow,
Died on the cold street, did poor little Joe.

A. W. AUNER'S
CARD AND JOB PRINTING ROOMS,
Tenth and Race Sts., Philadelphia, Pa.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: Poor Little Joe
From: GUEST,guest
Date: 06 Feb 11 - 03:53 PM

Thanks for the lyrics! I had no idea even of the song's name, it just was quoted in a book i read and caught my attention. Finding out it was a song-that's just amazing! Thanks!


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: Poor Little Joe
From: GUEST,Tiffany
Date: 24 Feb 11 - 01:31 AM

I was reading a book that my Aunts put together from my Grandmothers journals and she said that my Grandfather Palmer used to sing Poor Little Joe to the kids and that was his favorite song. I was so excited to see the lyrics here. Thanks for Sharing!!


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: Poor Little Joe
From: GUEST,Shelley Hendrickson-Simpson
Date: 18 Mar 11 - 09:40 PM

My Dad played the guitar and sang this song when I was little. It was my favorite but he wouldn't always sing it because it was so long. The last version posted here is nearest to the way my Dad sang it. I haven't heard it sung in more than 30 years. I've only met one other person who knew it. He was from West Virginia too.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: Poor Little Joe
From: GUEST
Date: 22 Aug 11 - 01:47 AM

Cold blew the blast and down came the snow
The poor little fellow had no place to go..
No mother to guide him in her grave she lie'd low
Cast on the cold world was poor little Joe.

A carriage passed by with a lady inside
She looked at Josephius and saw that he cried
She looked at Josephius and not even smiled
But fondly caressed her own darling child.

My dad was born in Massey Ont. in 1898 and I in Vancouver B.C. in 1943. He used to sit us kids on his knee and sing this song and we'd cry and say "sing it again Daddy". My name is Doug, but Mom & Dad always called me Joe
Doug Flesher


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: Poor Little Joe
From: GUEST,Allan Briggs
Date: 24 Oct 12 - 05:09 PM

I am now 75 years old. My mother used to sing this to me when I was a child and it always made me cry but,I still used to love her to sing it.This is the fist time I have ever seen it written down and now reading it I am not ashamed to say I have tears in my eyes.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: Poor Little Joe
From: GUEST,Simon Thread
Date: 27 Apr 14 - 08:24 PM

Listening to Arnold Keith Storm's version, I changed it into a story about Christmas eve, omitting the observations by the observer to make the view point neutral. [If the observer talked to the urchin, why didn't he do something to help him out?] Am I wrong to modify lyrics of these songs into something which works better for me? I'm not trying to palm it off on anybody as an original anything.

Cold blew the blast, down came the snow.
There was no place for shelter, nowhere to go.
No mother to guide him, in the grave she lay low.
Right out in the cold street stood poor little Joe.

As the crowd passed him by he begged them for bread;
No glove for his hands, no hat for his head;
The night before Christmas, to their homes they did go.
But out in the cold street stood poor little Joe.

In the holiday bustle he looked out of place,
This poor ragged urchin with dirt on his face
You could see by the lamplight that fell on the snow
The pale deathly features of poor little Joe.

Along came a carriage with a lady inside;
She looked on poor Joe's face and saw that he cried.
He followed the carriage; she not even smiled,
But was fondly caressing her own darling child.

The lights had gone dim and the clock it struck one,
When along came a policeman, his duty was done.
You would think by the sound of his dull, heavy tread
That he was awakening the sleep of the dead.

"Oh, what is this?" the policeman he said.
It was poor little Joe; on the ground he lie dead,
His eyes turned to Heaven, all covered with snow.
Right out in the cold street lay poor little Joe.

Before Christmas dawn, little Joe, he was dead
He will never more sleep on a cold snowy bed
He will never more wander the cold streets alone
For the angels have carried poor little Joe home

Now cold blew the blast, down came the snow.
There was no place for shelter, nowhere to go.
No mother to guide him, in the grave she lay low.
Right out in the cold street died poor little Joe.


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Mudcat time: 24 June 11:04 AM EDT

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