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Songs of Canadian slavery?

Marion 11 Sep 07 - 05:01 PM
Q (Frank Staplin) 12 Feb 07 - 05:59 PM
Q (Frank Staplin) 12 Feb 07 - 05:51 PM
Marion 12 Feb 07 - 04:54 PM
Marion 07 Feb 07 - 02:37 PM
Dave'sWife 19 Sep 06 - 08:17 AM
GUEST,DrWord 19 Sep 06 - 01:53 AM
rich-joy 18 Sep 06 - 08:36 PM
GUEST,Marion 18 Sep 06 - 04:58 PM
rich-joy 18 Sep 06 - 09:10 AM
GUEST,thurg 18 Sep 06 - 08:08 AM
rich-joy 18 Sep 06 - 04:12 AM
Q (Frank Staplin) 17 Sep 06 - 01:38 PM
GUEST 17 Sep 06 - 11:22 AM
Dave'sWife 17 Sep 06 - 10:34 AM
Mooh 17 Sep 06 - 09:36 AM
GUEST,thurg 17 Sep 06 - 09:27 AM
Rusty Dobro 17 Sep 06 - 07:33 AM
rich-joy 17 Sep 06 - 05:00 AM
GUEST,thurg 16 Sep 06 - 09:48 PM
Clinton Hammond 16 Sep 06 - 06:23 PM
Q (Frank Staplin) 16 Sep 06 - 05:50 PM
Genie 16 Sep 06 - 05:32 PM
GUEST,thurg 16 Sep 06 - 04:49 PM
Q (Frank Staplin) 16 Sep 06 - 04:37 PM
Q (Frank Staplin) 16 Sep 06 - 03:00 PM
Marion 16 Sep 06 - 05:56 AM
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Subject: RE: Songs of Canadian slavery?
From: Marion
Date: 11 Sep 07 - 05:01 PM

Angelique's Farewell

2007 by Marion Parsons

Farewell Montreal, I make my amends
Before my accusers, my foes and my friends
And beg for the pardon of God and the Crown
For striking the fire that swallowed the town.

Farewell my Ti-Claude, mon seul bien-aime
But I cannot follow and you could not stay
So if you should come to the land of the free
The blackened Atlantic will tell you of me.

Farewell mes enfants, I leave you alone
With wet clay to suckle and blankets of stone
My love gave me one and le Sieur gave me two
But none doomed to linger a cold winter through.

Farewell ma Maitresse, you devil of whores
Who fed by the labour that never was yours
So when you grow feeble, to heaven you plead
May God show you mercy as you showed to me.

Farewell mon esprit, perhaps you shall fly
As smoke from my pyre escapes to the sky
Perhaps you shall vanish like ash in the wind
No cross left to mark me, no bones and no kin.

Notes: Marie-Joseph Angelique was a slave who was hanged in 1734 for setting her mistress' house on fire; the fire spread and destroyed most of old Montreal. It was apparently part of an attempt to escape with her lover Claude Thibault, who did get away successfully. After being hanged, Angelique's body was burned and the ashes thrown to the wind.

mon seul bien-aime: my only beloved (I don't know how to do the accent; it's pronounced ay-MAY.

mes enfants: my children

le Sieur: the Lord, i.e., her late owner Lord Francheville

ma Maitresse: my mistress

mon esprit: my spirit


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Subject: RE: Songs of Canadian slavery?
From: Q (Frank Staplin)
Date: 12 Feb 07 - 05:59 PM

Tme Mallory pamphlet is on line-
http://docsouth.unc.edu/neh/mallory/mallory.html.
Mallory


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Subject: RE: Songs of Canadian slavery?
From: Q (Frank Staplin)
Date: 12 Feb 07 - 05:51 PM

You might look at-
Mallory, William, c. 1902. Old Plantation Days, 56pp. Printed in Ontario. It has a few escape and religious poems by this escapee to Canada. I think it is on the internet. If you can't find it, I'll try to locate my copy, which is around somewhere. I remember it had a pinkish cover which may help me spot it. I think the songs were imported, but not sure.


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Subject: RE: Songs of Canadian slavery?
From: Marion
Date: 12 Feb 07 - 04:54 PM

refreshez


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Subject: RE: Songs of Canadian slavery?
From: Marion
Date: 07 Feb 07 - 02:37 PM

Hi folks. After much distraction and procrastination, I've returned my attention to this project, so I thought I'd refresh and see if there's anyone currently kicking around Mudcat who might have an answer...

Thanks, Marion


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Subject: RE: Songs of Canadian slavery?
From: Dave'sWife
Date: 19 Sep 06 - 08:17 AM

Even though Isabella Gunn is not on suject, I DO suggest contacting Eileen McGann and asking her directly. She's released several CDs I have not heard and she is one of Canada's most prolific writers of original material based on historical subjects. As such, she may very well be aware of Trad songs from the dates you are interested in. it can't hurt to ask.

She really is a treasure and I should just stop procrastinating and buy the CDs of hers I don't have! You can get them on CDBaby or on her website. She's one of the few songwriters writing almost exclusively about Canada. If she doesn't know of any songs in your area of interest, she may well be able to direct you to someone who does.

here's a link to her website:

Eileen McGann's Official Homepage


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Subject: RE: Songs of Canadian slavery?
From: GUEST,DrWord
Date: 19 Sep 06 - 01:53 AM

Marion,

will you post the lyric when completed? fascinating ...

dennis


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Subject: RE: Songs of Canadian slavery?
From: rich-joy
Date: 18 Sep 06 - 08:36 PM

Thanks for that link, Marion - much appreciated!
I read on the 'net last night, in an article by Allan Gill :
" ... It is thought that one in ten modern-day residents of eastern Canada is descended from British child migrants. Child migration to that country ceased in 1939 ... "


Cheers! R-J


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Subject: RE: Songs of Canadian slavery?
From: GUEST,Marion
Date: 18 Sep 06 - 04:58 PM

Hi folks, and thanks for the responses so far. I've got a few things here to look into. I'm working on a song about Marie-Joseph Angelique, a slave who was hanged in 1734 for starting a fire which destroyed much of Montreal. I thought it would be good to quote some lines or melodic material from a traditional song if I come across one.

Funny you should mention the British home children... I actually started a thread about another song project on that topic a few years back... there's some more discussion, and my lyrics, there.

Cheers, Marion


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Subject: RE: Songs of Canadian slavery?
From: rich-joy
Date: 18 Sep 06 - 09:10 AM

sorry Thurg, missed your "auctioning" reference before!

I just meant that I recalled from those documentaries, "The Leaving of Liverpool" and "Lost Children of the Empire" and the subsequent govt inquiries and publications, that these kids were often wrongly told that their parents were dead or didn't want them - and parents were likewise told their kids had died. However, they had been sent to Canada, Australia, South Africa etc etc, to be used as un-paid farm or domestic labourers and often VERY badly treated (and particularly by the "Christian" institutions, in Australia!) - and this was happening well into the 20th century.

... but I do apologise for the thread creep - as it's meant to be on the songs!

Cheers! R-J


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Subject: RE: Songs of Canadian slavery?
From: GUEST,thurg
Date: 18 Sep 06 - 08:08 AM

R-J: Interesting site - but nothing there about the auctioning of orphans before, after, or at the approximate time I give ...


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Subject: RE: Songs of Canadian slavery?
From: rich-joy
Date: 18 Sep 06 - 04:12 AM

sorry Q, I did try those threads - even searched unsuccessfully through my own lengthy saved thread titles ...

just wanted to mention (esp to guest, thurg) that it didn't stop in the early 1900s - see BBC documentary "The Leaving of Liverpool" - and this link to a Timeline of Child Migration (read slavery) 1607-1998 :
http://www.goldonian.org/barnardo/child_migrationl.htm

Cheers! R-J


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Subject: RE: Songs of Canadian slavery?
From: Q (Frank Staplin)
Date: 17 Sep 06 - 01:38 PM

Interesting digressionary notes, but can anybody contribute to Marion's search for Black song in Canada pre-1834?

Many interesting threads here at Mudcat.

"Isabella Gunn" was posted in thread 71188: Isabella Gunn
Eileen McGann- thread 73994: McGann

Mudcat threads on orphan children and indenture: There are several but it may take a bit of searching using various search words. Please add to these threads, which are continuing and always benefit from new material. It is much easier to track down posts if subjects are kept together.

Orphan children- see 42122 (Canadian), 33214, etc.
Indenture- 81798 etc.

81798: here
42122: here
33214: here


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Subject: RE: Songs of Canadian slavery?
From: GUEST
Date: 17 Sep 06 - 11:22 AM

My grandfather came to Canada as a slave at age 11........from Cork.


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Subject: RE: Songs of Canadian slavery?
From: Dave'sWife
Date: 17 Sep 06 - 10:34 AM

Don't know any about slavery but Eileen McGann wrote one about Indentured Servitude: Isabella Gunn:

Discussed in this thread
http://www.mudcat.org/thread.cfm?threadid=71188


It's a beatiful song. She writes about many historic Canadian themes and it wouldn't surprise me to learn she'd covered Slavery or the Underground RailRoad.


Isabella Gunn

My name it is Isabella Gunn, I'm a woman both true and strong
From Orkney's rugged Isles I come, but now listen unto my song
When I was young I had a lad, as I loved, so he loved me
Poverty made him sell his land to travel across the sea

It was in the summer of eighteen and six, my lover and I set sail
To stay with him I used my wits and my courage it did not fail
In men's atire I stowed away to join that jolly crew
Side by side we worked each day and only my lover knew

And oh how I loved those rocky cliffs and that windy and treeless shore
And oh how it broke my heart to leave, but I loved my dear one more, one more
But I loved my dear one more.

My love was signed by the Hudson Bay for to be a Voyageur
To map and explore the northern ways, to trade and to transport fur
And if you think I'd be left behind, it's little you understand
For on the very next line I signed for to do the work of a man

And O how I loved the life we led, though my love and I worked apart
But adventure delighted my very soul and the forest had healed my heart


The company signed me to work three years, and well had I proved my worth
But eighteen months fulfilled my fears and I found that I'd soon give birth.
I hoped that the trees would give me rest but they found me where I lay
With my newborn baby at my breast there was little that I could say.

They sent me downriver to wash the clothes of the men I had worked beside
And though I did well enough I suppose, I felt that I'd rather have died.
The only thing that gave me joy, the baby grew strong and hale
And I looked for the day I'd take my boy and we'd follow that northern trail

Oh how I loved those rocky lakes and the stands of birch and pine
And oh in the spring how my heart turned north for to search out this land of mine

My name it is Isabella Gunn and it's many long miles I've roamed
From Orkney's rugged Isles I come, now Canada is my home.
For it's here I've come and here I'll be and Here I'll find my rest
And my son's son's and daughters will follow me in the land that I love the best


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Subject: RE: Songs of Canadian slavery?
From: Mooh
Date: 17 Sep 06 - 09:36 AM

Though I doubt there's much mention of song, the Dictionary Of Canadian Biography will have lots of slavery references if you figure out who to look up. The DOCB is often available in libraries and has large volumes much like an encyclopedia. I have often used it to start research on Canadiana.

Peace, Mooh.


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Subject: RE: Songs of Canadian slavery?
From: GUEST,thurg
Date: 17 Sep 06 - 09:27 AM

The last auction of orphans in Canada was held in Halifax in the early 1900's, if I remember correctly.


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Subject: RE: Songs of Canadian slavery?
From: Rusty Dobro
Date: 17 Sep 06 - 07:33 AM

When I was at school in the '60's,a long corridor was lined with photographs of all the orphaned boys that the school had subscribed to send to Canada and Australia. I felt pretty good at the time that my predecessors had done so much good, but I know differently now......


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Subject: RE: Songs of Canadian slavery?
From: rich-joy
Date: 17 Sep 06 - 05:00 AM

... there was also the 20th century slave labour from Britain, of orphaned kids and poor kids - sent to both Canada and Australia - as cheap farm labourers and servants and oft-treated pretty badly ...


Cheers, R-J


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Subject: RE: Songs of Canadian slavery?
From: GUEST,thurg
Date: 16 Sep 06 - 09:48 PM

"$500 in the 1840's would be a living wage."

Okay - so rates have gone down considerably - I thought so!


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Subject: RE: Songs of Canadian slavery?
From: Clinton Hammond
Date: 16 Sep 06 - 06:23 PM

Unless you want them to eat all your doughnuts, and drink all your beer, Canadians make LOUSY slaves


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Subject: RE: Songs of Canadian slavery?
From: Q (Frank Staplin)
Date: 16 Sep 06 - 05:50 PM

$500 in the 1840's would be a living wage.


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Subject: RE: Songs of Canadian slavery?
From: Genie
Date: 16 Sep 06 - 05:32 PM

Songs of Canadian slavery? I never thought about that before. Do y'all make good slaves, Marion? ;)


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Subject: RE: Songs of Canadian slavery?
From: GUEST,thurg
Date: 16 Sep 06 - 04:49 PM

"The complainant, Mr. Graham, stated that it would cost $500 to supply their services as musicians for a single season at his hotel at Harrodsburg Springs."

I see rates haven't gone up much ....


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Subject: RE: Songs of Canadian slavery?
From: Q (Frank Staplin)
Date: 16 Sep 06 - 04:37 PM

Found nothing in the Canadian songbooks that I have.

The Canadian Encyclopedia has a few mentions of pre-1833 Black musicians in Canada. The earliest is a notice in the Quebec Gazette Nov. 30 1775 for a runaway slave named Lowcanes who spoke French but little English who (tr. from Fr.) 'plays the violin very well'. A watercolor from 1807 shows a black tambourine player, playing for a group of dancers. A survey of 159 Blacks in Toronto listed two musicians.
The Encyclopedia says "Few folk songs are known to have survived in the older Black communities in Canada." These probably are spirituals and other songs brought from the United States escapees from slavery, well after 1833.

Again, no songs mentioned, but some information might be found by researching these statements- 1783-84. A Colonel Bluck commanded an African Corps known as the Black Pioneers- date? The corps consisted of runaway slaves.
"In the majority of Loyalist Corps, there were men of African descent serving as buglers, musicians and servants. These people settled in the Shelburne and Birchtown areas in January 1784 with the white settlers."
Both of the statements found in http://www.bccns.com/history_slavery.html


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Subject: RE: Songs of Canadian slavery?
From: Q (Frank Staplin)
Date: 16 Sep 06 - 03:00 PM

Not of the period you are looking for, but there is an interesting report in Dena J. Epstein, "Sinful Tunes and Spirituals," p. 152 about a legal action filed in 1844 in the Chancery Court of Louisville. attaching the steamboat Pike "to recover damages for the unauthorized transportation of ... three slaves, Reuben, Henry and George, on board said steamboat from Louisville to Cincinnati, whence they escaped to Canada."
"The slaves were described as between nineteen and twenty-three years of age, well-trained as dining room servants and scientific musicians, in which capacity they had been in the habit, for some years, of playing together on various instruments, at balls and parties... each of them was worth $1500... taken on board the Pike ...1841... when they had with them, besides their clothes, musical instruments and books of the value of about $250..."
The complainant, Mr. Graham, stated that it would cost $500 to supply their services as musicians for a single season at his hotel at Harrodsburg Springs."

Epstein notes that these three slaves were highly skilled men. We know too little about slave musicians ... The relation of professional musicians, who were also slaves, to black folk music in the United States is a matter which has hardly been mentioned- case not unique.
I would not doubt that these three escaped slaves continued in their musical profession in Canada, but I have no information.


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Subject: Songs of Canadian slavery?
From: Marion
Date: 16 Sep 06 - 05:56 AM

Hello gang. Does anybody know of any traditional songs that are associated with Canada's slave era? I'd also be interested in hearing of modern songs on the top.

Quick historical synopsis: although this is not widely discussed, there were slaves in Canada for about 200 hundred years, ending in 1834 when slavery was abolished across the British empire. In the earlier period, most slaves were natives, and in the end, most were black. Most slavery took place in Lower Canada (now Quebec), so any songs springing directly out of it would probably be in French.

Thanks, Marion


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