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Lyr Add: Hanged I Shall Be

DigiTrad:
DOWN IN A WILLOW GARDEN
HANGED I SHALL BE
OXFORD CITY
THE KNOXVILLE GIRL


Related threads:
Lyr Req: Rose Connally / Rose Connelly (13)
(origins) Lyr Req: Knoxville Girl (53)
(DTStudy) DTStudy Murder Ballads with bloody noses (30)
Lyr Req: The Wexford Girl (7)
Penguin: Oxford City (4)
(origins) Origin: Oxford Girl (Oysterband) (7)
Info: knoxville girl (4) (closed)
Lyr Req: appalachian murder ballads (34)
Info Request: Down in the Willow Garden (10)


In Mudcat MIDIs:
The Wexford Murder (Noted by Fred Hamer from Walter "Paddy" Church of Bedfordshire, and published in Garners Gay (Fred Hamer, EFDS, 1967).)


Wolfgang Hell 05 Mar 98 - 07:47 AM
Phideaux 05 Mar 98 - 10:38 AM
Bruce O. 05 Mar 98 - 04:25 PM
Dale Rose 06 Mar 98 - 12:50 AM
Bruce O. 06 Mar 98 - 01:06 AM
Bruce O. 06 Mar 98 - 01:18 AM
Wolfgang 06 Mar 98 - 10:31 AM
Bruce O. 06 Mar 98 - 10:51 AM
Wolfgang 06 Mar 98 - 10:57 AM
Bruce O, 06 Mar 98 - 11:10 AM
GUEST,Annette 18 Feb 01 - 04:44 PM
GUEST,Bobby Bob, Ellan Vannin 18 Feb 01 - 06:33 PM
Stewie 18 Feb 01 - 09:00 PM
Malcolm Douglas 18 Feb 01 - 10:24 PM
Stewie 19 Feb 01 - 12:23 AM
GUEST,Annette 19 Feb 01 - 05:34 AM
wes.w 19 Feb 01 - 09:45 AM
Malcolm Douglas 19 Feb 01 - 01:49 PM
Uncle_DaveO 19 Feb 01 - 02:09 PM
Malcolm Douglas 19 Feb 01 - 07:32 PM
Malcolm Douglas 20 Mar 01 - 01:30 PM
GUEST,David Reeves 23 Dec 03 - 01:29 PM
Abby Sale 28 Jan 04 - 10:19 AM
Abby Sale 28 Jan 04 - 10:52 AM
GUEST,Pete Francis 25 Jul 05 - 09:15 AM
Le Scaramouche 25 Jul 05 - 09:42 AM
Wolfgang 25 Jul 05 - 10:06 AM
Big Al Whittle 26 Jul 05 - 02:02 AM
GUEST,Pete Francis 02 Nov 05 - 11:08 AM
GUEST,Pete Francis 02 Nov 05 - 11:41 AM
Malcolm Douglas 02 Nov 05 - 09:24 PM
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MGM·Lion 15 Dec 10 - 08:34 AM
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Subject: Lyr Add: HANGÈD I SHALL BE^^ (from Roy Palmer)
From: Wolfgang Hell
Date: 05 Mar 98 - 07:47 AM

The Albion band (with Martin Carthy) sings this. The version including notes I post here comes from R. Palmer, Everyman's Book of English Country songs.

HANGÈD I SHALL BE

1. As I was bound apprentice, I was bound unto a mill.
I served my master truly for seven years or more.

2 Until I took up courting with a girl with a rolling eye,
I told that girl I'd marry her, if she would be my bride.

3 I asked her if she'd take a walk through the fields and meadows gay,
And there we told the tales of love and fixed the wedding day.

4 As we were a-walking, and talking of things that grew around,
I took a stick all out of the hedge and knocked that pretty maid down.

5 Down on her bended knees she fell and loud for mercy cried:
‘O, come spare the life of an innocent girl, for I am not fit to die.'

6 Then I took her by her curly locks and dragged her on the ground
Until I came to the river-side that flowed to Ekefield town.

7 That ran so long in distance, that ran so deep and wide,
And there I plunged that pretty fair maid that should have been my bride.

8 When I went home to my parents' house, about ten o'clock that night,
My mother she jumped out of bed, all for to light the light.

9 She asked me and she questioned me, 'What stains your hands and clothes?'
And the answer I gave back to her, 'I been bleeding at the nose.'

10. No rest, no rest, all that long night, no rest could I find,
For the sparks of fire and brimstone all round my head did shine.

11. And it was about two days after, this fair young maid was found
A-floating by the river-side that flows to Ekefield town.

12 The judges and the jurymen, on me they did agree,
For murdering of this pretty fair maid; so hangèd I shall be.

Ekefield town: does not exist; but this could be a garbled version of Hocstow, the original location.

Samuel Pepys, well known for his love of music and singing, assembled a large collection of street ballads, which includes 'The bloody Miller Being a true and just Account of one Francis Cooper of Hocstow near Shrewsbury, who was a Millers Servant, and kept company with one Anne Nicols for the space of two years, who then proved to be with Child by him, and being urged by her Father to marry her he most wickedly and barbarously murdered her, as you shall hear by the sequel.' This was the ancestor of a great family of songs on the same theme, widely known in Britain and America until recently, under such titles as '7he Cruel Miller' ,'The 'Prentice Boy', 'The Wexford Murder', 'The Berkshire Tragedy' and 'The Wittam Miller'. One motif which invariable appears is that of the guilty bloodstains, explained as a 'bleeding at the nose'. H. E. Rollins, the American ballad scholar, found a reference in a contemporary diary which authenticates and dates the original murder: 'I heard of a murther near Salop on Sabb. day y/e [an e printed above an y] 10. instant, a woman fathering a conception on a Milner was Kild by him in a feild, her Body lay there many dayes by reason of y/e Coroner's absence' The composer, E. J. Moeran, took down this version from a Norfolk man in I92I

Wolfgang


Messages from multiple threads combined.
-Joe Offer-


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Subject: RE: ADD: Hangèd I shall be
From: Phideaux
Date: 05 Mar 98 - 10:38 AM

Sounds like "Banks of the Ohio" in another locale.

Bob Schwarer


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Subject: RE: ADD: Hangèd I shall be
From: Bruce O.
Date: 05 Mar 98 - 04:25 PM

Wolfgang, where did your identification of the Pepys ballad with Laws P 35 come from? I thought than mine in the internet broadside index at ZN1624 was the original, but maybe not. Do we have any observers here who might know about Parish Registers in Hocstow, England and who might like to search them for Anne Nicols and Francis Cooper to see if they were real people? The ballad was printed late 1684 to 1696.

G. M. Laws, Jr., didn't know about the Pepys ballad, but did an extensive study of different versions, giving some 18th century texts in 'American Balladry from British Broadsides', pp 104-22, 1957.

The tune of the Pepys ballad was "Alack for my love I [must] die". This comes from "The Downfall of William Grismond..22 of March, 1650" (ZN1998). In Scots traditional versions he is called "William/Willie/Wully Graham/Gray" (elsewhere "Guiesman"), e.g., 'Grieg-Duncan Collection', II, #190 (only 1 copy with tune).

"Banks of the Ohio" and some other murder ballads were probably modeled on this. "Banks of the Ohio" seems to have been originally "The Banks of the Old Pee Dee" (or Peedee), but there's more than one river by this name in the U.S. There'a a Pee Dee river in South Carolina that flows into the Atlantic about two thirds of the way from Wilmington to Charleston. The town Pee Dee is a little east of Florence, SC.


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Subject: RE: ADD: Hangèd I shall be
From: Dale Rose
Date: 06 Mar 98 - 12:50 AM

Useless fact: Stephen Foster originally wrote Old Folks At Home with the phrase, Way Down Upon the Pee Dee River . . . then he decided that Swannee sounded better.


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Subject: RE: ADD: Hangèd I shall be
From: Bruce O.
Date: 06 Mar 98 - 01:06 AM

Yes, there a photcopy of his original MS of it at the Stephen Foster Museum on the Suwanee river in south Georgia, with the Pee Dee crossed out and Swannee written above the line. Foster doesn't seem to have ever actually seen either river.


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Subject: RE: ADD: Hangèd I shall be
From: Bruce O.
Date: 06 Mar 98 - 01:18 AM

I have to recant. Foster never saw the Suwannee (spelling here corrected), but I don't know if he ever saw the Pee Dee river.


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Subject: RE: ADD: Hangèd I shall be
From: Wolfgang
Date: 06 Mar 98 - 10:31 AM

Bruce, I have only cited the above mentioned book (Palmer ed.). I posted all of Palmer's notes to this song except this bit (which is to be inserted directly before the last sentence):

"(Philip Henry's Diaries and Letters, 20 February 1684, ed. M. H. Lee, 1882, p.323)"

I have no idea how reliable Palmer is.
Wolfgang


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Subject: RE: ADD: Hangèd I shall be
From: Bruce O.
Date: 06 Mar 98 - 10:51 AM

Palmer is pretty reliable, and he knows his broadside ballads, many directly from the collections, not reprints, so I guess I wasn't the first to note the bloody miller ballad, after all. Thanks Wolfgang. I didn't know about that book by Palmer. I have several others including 'Everyman's Book of British Ballads', 1980. I forgot to look at the latter for songs that turned up on many threads here.

He has in it: The Lambton Worm, A Woman's work is never done, Marrowbones, The Lobster, (old sea crab), Great Silkie/ The Swan swims so bonny (twa sisters), and some others.


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Subject: RE: ADD: Hangèd I shall be
From: Wolfgang
Date: 06 Mar 98 - 10:57 AM

These two books (Everyman's Book of English country songs/British Ballads) look like twins and are editied in the same style. "Country songs" is the older one, but perhaps I only think so since I bought it first.
Wolfgang


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Subject: RE: ADD: Hangèd I shall be
From: Bruce O,
Date: 06 Mar 98 - 11:10 AM

Thanks Wolfgang. Palmer is pretty reliable, and knows his broadsides, mostly directly from the collections, not reprints. I guess I wasn't the first to identify "The Bloody Miller" ballad as Laws P35. I didn't know about that Palmer book. I have several others of his, including 'Everyman's Book of British Ballad', 1980.

I forgot to look there for many songs on threads here. He has in it: The Lambton Worm/ A Woman's work is never done/ The Great Silkie/ The Swan Swims Bonny (twa sisters)/ The Lobster (old Sea Crab) and others.


Messages below are from a new thread.


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Subject: Hanged I shall be
From: GUEST,Annette
Date: 18 Feb 01 - 04:44 PM

I am looking for the lyrics of a song called "Hanged I shall be". Could not find it in the database, but may have overlooked? I got most of the words, but miss a few lines here and there and lost the record it was on. I think it was sung by John Kirkpatrick. Thanks! It goes something like:

O when I was thought apprenticed
I was 'prenticed to a mill
And I served my master truly for more than seven years

Until I took up a courting
With a lass with a roving eye
........

O as we were walking and talking
through the hills and meadows gay
It is there we told our tales of love and we fixed our wedding day

......
......
I took a stick right out of the hedge and I knocked this pretty girl down (psychopath..?)

Down on her bended knees she fell
And loud for mercy cried
O spare the life of an innocent girl for I'm not prepared to dye

But I took her by her curly locks??
......to the ground
And I tbrew her into the river ?? that flows thought Weefield ? town

That flows so far to the distance
that flows so deep and wide
And it's there I threw this pretty fair maid that should have been my bride

When I went back to my parent's house
It being late a night
Mother she got out of bed all for to light the light

O she asked me and she questiond me
What stains your hands and clothes
O the answer I gave back to her: I've been bleeding at me nose.

No rest, no rest all that long night
no rest nay could I find
For the sparks of fire and brimstone around me at me jibe?

It was not three days later
that this pretty fair maid was found
floating in the river wide that flows through Weefield ? town

That flows so far to the distance
That flows so deep and wide
and it's there they found this pretty fair maid that should have been me bride

O the judges and the jurymen,
all on me they did agree
for the murdering of this pretty fair maid a-hanged I shall be


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Hanged I shall be
From: GUEST,Bobby Bob, Ellan Vannin
Date: 18 Feb 01 - 06:33 PM

It's on The Albion Band's 'Battle of the Field' album, which was eventually released after much to-ing and fro-ing many years after it was recorded.

On that album, Martin Carthy sang the song (side two on vinyl version).

Shoh slaynt,

Bobby Bob


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Subject: Lyr Add: HANGED I SHALL BE (Albion Country Band)
From: Stewie
Date: 18 Feb 01 - 09:00 PM

Malcolm, I should have checked there too. I have been busily transcribing it from the Albion Country Band recording - and Carthy's (sometimes annoyingly) mannered singing style does not make for easy transcription! Since there are several minor departures from the text Wolfgang posted, I will post it anyway. It seems that it is Annette's source. Wolfgang has cleared up the town name 'Ekefield' - I had 'Heathfield'. Carthy does not seem to be singing 'river' - sounds more like 'fever there'. What I and Annette have as 'jibe' could be a reference to the gibbet and could be 'gib', but pronounced 'jibe'.

HANGED I SHALL BE
(Traditional)

Now as I was bound apprentice, I was 'prenticed to the mill
And I served me master truly for more than seven year
Until I took up to courting with a lass with that rolling eye
And I promised that I'd marry her in the month of sweet July
And as we went out a-walking through the fields and the meadows gay
Oh it's there we told our tales of love and we fixed our wedding day

And as we were walking and talking of the things that grew around
Oh I took a stick all out of the hedge and I knocked that pretty maid down
Down on her bended knees she fell and loud for mercy cried
'Oh spare the life of an innocent girl for I'm not prepared to die'
But I took her by her curly locks and I dragged her on the ground
And I throwed her into the river (?) there that flows to Ekefield town
That flows so far to the distance, that flows so deep and wide
Oh it's there I threw this pretty fair maid that should have been me bride

Oh I went home to me parents' house, it being late at night
Mother she got out of bed all for to light the light
Oh she asked me and she questioned me, 'What stains your hands and clothes'
And the answer I gave back to her, 'I've been bleeding at me nose'
No rest, no rest all that long night, no rest there could I find
For there's sparks of fire and brimstone around me at the jibe (?)

And it was about three days after that this pretty fair maid was found
Floating by the river (?) there that flows to Ekefield town
That flows so far to the distance, that flows so deep and wide
Oh it's there they found that pretty fair maid that should have been me bride
Oh the judges and the jurymen all on me they did agree
For the murdering of this pretty fair maid a-hanged I shall be

Source: Albion Country Band 'Battle of the Field' Island Records HELP 25 (1976)


--Stewie.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Hanged I shall be
From: Malcolm Douglas
Date: 18 Feb 01 - 10:24 PM

That would be

"For the sparks of fire and brimstone (all) around my head did shine."

As a rule I'd say "my" rather than "me" where it's just a dialectal pronounciation, but that's only a personal preference.

Roy Palmer (English Country Songs, 1979) gives a slightly different version, from "Shepherd" Taylor of Hickling in Norfolk (1921), and remarks, as Wolfgang quoted in the earlier thread, "Ekefield Town...does not exist; but this could be a garbled version of Hocstow, the original location."  Harry Cox (from just up the road in Catfield) also sang "Ekefield".  I'd guess that the Albions recorded a Norfolk set, but it's not either of the ones I've mentioned.

Malcolm


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Hanged I shall be
From: Stewie
Date: 19 Feb 01 - 12:23 AM

Malcolm, listening to it again, you are right - 'around my head did shine'. I don't think it is dialect in this case, but sloppy diction on Carthy's part - witness that both Annette and I thought that he was singing something totally different. Well, my fanciful theory about the gibbet can be filed in the circular file. What do you reckon about the 'river' bit.

--Stewie.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Hanged I shall be
From: GUEST,Annette
Date: 19 Feb 01 - 05:34 AM

Thank you all for your help! Cheers.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Hanged I shall be
From: wes.w
Date: 19 Feb 01 - 09:45 AM

Its also recorded on an early Peter Bellamy LP - Fair Englands Shore - as 'Prentice Boy' I think. Its a bit different to the lyrics here and in Malcom's link, both in words and structure, but not that much. I expect it'll be the Harry Cox version, and it has these lines in diffrent verses..

A'floating by the river bank that that flows through Ekefield town

That flows so brisk and narrow, that flows so deep and wide...


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Subject: Lyr Add: EKEFIELD TOWN
From: Malcolm Douglas
Date: 19 Feb 01 - 01:49 PM

Having looked again at "Shepherd" Taylor's 1921 version referred to above, I think after all that it is the one used by the Albion Country Band; the tune is identical and the text not greatly different. Harry Cox's set of the song is similar textually, but sung to a quite different melody. Well, why not quote it all, then:


EKEFIELD TOWN

(Version from Harry Cox of Catfield in Norfolk; recorded by Mervyn Plunkett in 1960).

As I was fast bound 'prentice boy, I was bound unto a mill,
And I served my master truly for seven years and more,
Till I took up a-courting with the girl with the rolling eye,
And I promised that girl I'd marry her if she would be my bride.

So I went up to her parents' house about the hour of eight,
But little did her parents think that it should be her fate.
I asked her if she'd take a walk through the fields and meadows gay,
And there we told the tales of love and fixed the wedding day.

As we were walking and talking of the different things around,
I drew a large stick from the hedge and knocked that fair maid down.
Down on her bending knees she fell and so loud for mercy cried,
"Oh, come spare the life of a innocent girl, for I am not fit to die."

Then I took her by the curly locks and I dragged her on the ground
Until I came to the riverside that flowed through Ekefield town.
It ran both long and narrow; it ran both deep and wide,
And there I plunged this pretty fair maid that should have been my bride.

So when I went home to my parents' house about ten o'clock that night.
My mother she jumped out of bed all for to light the light.
She asked me and she questioned me, "Oh. what stains your hands and clothes?"
And the answer I gave back to her, "I've been bleeding at the nose."

So no rest, no rest, all that long night; no rest, no rest, could I find.
The fire and the brimstone around my head did shine,
And it was about two days after this fair young maid was found,
A-floating by the riverside that flowed through Ekefield town.

Now the judges and the jurymen on me they did agree,
For murdering of this pretty fair maid so hanged I shall be.
Oh hanged, oh hanged, oh hanged I shall be,
For murdering of this pretty fair maid, so hanged I shall be.


Harry Cox was a regular at singing sessions at the Windmill Inn and the Catherine Wheel at Sutton in Norfolk up until 1970; he died in 1971. My parents took the village shop at Sutton in 1974, by which time both pubs had been closed and converted to private dwellings.


This is a song that certainly caught the popular imagination in England and, later, America; it has also been found in Scotland and Ireland. Often called The Oxford Girl, this mutated into Wexford, Waxweed and all manner of odd things. Laws assigned it his number P35, and it is no. 263 in Steve Roud's Folksong index. I started making a list of useful references on the net, and...

In the DT:

THE KNOXVILLE GIRL American version as recorded by the Louvain Brothers: no tune.
OXFORD TRAGEDY Collected by Cecil Sharp from Mary Wilson and Mrs. Townley, Kentucky, 1917; with tune.
THE CRUEL MILLER A collation of several broadside texts and an Irish variant of the tune from the Petrie collection. ( The Seeds of Love, ed. Stephen Sedley, 1967).

In the Forum:

THE WEXFORD GIRL American version as recorded by Benny Barnes: no tune.
Knoxville Girl as recorded by the Louvain Brothers; with guitar chords. No tune.
Knoxville Girl American version from Vance Randolph's collection of Ozark folksongs. No tune.

There is an entry at The Traditional Ballad Index:

The Wexford Girl (The Oxford, Lexington, or Knoxville Girl; The Cruel Miller; etc.)

Versions at The Max Hunter Folk Song Collection (most of these have audio files and staff notation):

My Tender Parents Brought Me Up As sung by Mr. T. R. Hammond in Osceola, Missouri on September 17, 1958.
The Waxweed Girl As sung by Mr. David Pricket in Clifty, Arkansas on January 19, 1958.
Waxwell Girl As sung by Mrs. Roxie Phillips in Berryville, Arkansas on November 4, 1958.
The Knoxville Girl As sung by Mrs. George Ripley in Milford, Missouri on November 21, 1959.
Waxferd Girl As sung by Reba Dearmore, Mountain Home, Arkansas on January 7, 1969.
Knoxville Girl As sung by Paralee Weddington, Busch, Arkansas on March 7, 1968.

Bruce Olson has the text of the earliest known (broadside) version at his website Roots of Folk:

The bloody Miller

There are plenty of broadside versions at The Bodleian Library Broadside Collection:

The Wittham-miller, ... or The Berkshire tragedy Printed between 1812 and 1830 by D. Wrighton, 86 Snow Hill, Birmingham.
The Berkshire tragedy, or, The Wittam miller Printed between 1797 and 1846 by J. Turner of Coventry.
The Berkshire tragedy, or, The Wittam miller Printer and date unknown.
The Berkshire tragedy, or, the Wittam miller Printed between 1802 and 1819 by J. Pitts, 14 Great St. Andrew Street, Seven Dials, London. Two copies; there are also a further 5 (later?) copies from Pitts.
The Berkshire trgedy [sic], or, The Wittam miller Printed c. 1700?
The Berkshire trgedy [sic], or, The Wittam miller Printed 1780?
The Berkshire tragedy, or, The Wittam miller Printed 1796: the most easily legible of 6 copies.
The Berkshire tragedy; or The Wittam miller Printed between 1800 and 1811 by Howard and Evans, 42, Long Lane, London.

Bloody miller Printed between 1789 and 1820 by G. Thompson, no. 156, Dale-street, Liverpool.
Bloody miller Printed between 1820 and 1824 for W. Armstrong, Banastre-street, Liverpool.

Cruel miller or Love and murder! Printed between 1842 and 1855 by W. Jackson and Son, (late Russell,) 62, Digbeth, from 21, Moor street, Birmingham.
Cruel miller or, Love and murder! Printed c.1850 W. Pratt, Printer, 82, Digbeth, Birmingham. Faded towards the end.

Cruel miller Printed between 1860 and 1883 by H. Disley, 57, High-street, St. Giles, London.
Cruel miller Printed between 1863 and 1885 H.P. Such, 177, Union Street, Boro'., London.
The cruel miller Printed between 1858 and 1885 by W.S. Fortey, Printer & Publisher, 2 & 3 Monmouth Ct., London.


Malcolm


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Hanged I shall be
From: Uncle_DaveO
Date: 19 Feb 01 - 02:09 PM

No-one has mentioned the tune here. I assume this is sung to the tune of The Lincolnshire Poacher. It has the same meter and a lot of the same phraseology at the begnning, and when the words in those parts are specific they don't rhyme, as does the Lincolnshire Poacher, and as this song does in later verses.

Dave Oesterreich


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Hanged I shall be
From: Malcolm Douglas
Date: 19 Feb 01 - 07:32 PM

I've never come across any version of it sung to that tune.  A number of the links I gave above include tunes, which differ quite widely, though a couple at least appear to belong to the Gilderoy/ Lazarus/ Star of the County Down family.  "Shepherd" Taylor's version (recorded by the Albions) is also a member of that family, though Harry Cox's doesn't seem to be.  I'll send a midi of the Taylor tune to the Mudcat Midi site, as I have notation for it; I'll do Cox's, too, if I have time and can make it out from the recording.

Malcolm


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Subject: Lyr Add: THE WEXFORD MURDER
From: Malcolm Douglas
Date: 20 Mar 01 - 01:30 PM

In connection with some further discussion in this thread: Knoxville Girl, here is another set. There may possibly be a vague connection with the Lincolnshire Poacher melody, but I'm not convinced.


THE WEXFORD MURDER

(Noted by Fred Hamer from Walter "Paddy" Church of Bedfordshire)

'Twas in the town of Idalo where I did live and dwell,
'Twas in the town of Wexford I owned a flour mill,
There I fell in love with a Wexford girl with a dark and rolling eye,
And I asked her if she'd come with me and along with me comply.

She asked me out to take a walk and to name the wedding day,
And we walked along quite easily as all young lovers may,
And anyone who saw her said she'd make a pretty bride,
For any lord or nobleman or anyone beside.

But I plucked a stake from out the fence and I struck that fair girl down,
And there I had my will of her all on the level ground,
I knocked her to her bended knee, for mercy she did cry,
Oh Willie dear don't murder me for I'm not prepared to die.

I took her by the curly locks and I dragged her o'er the ground,
I dragged her to the river that runs through Wexford town,
Then I heeded not a word she said, but I still beat more and more,
Till the ground all around me was in a bloody gore.

Lie there, lie there you Wexford girl, you'll never be my bride,
Lie there, lie there you Wexford girl to me you'll never be tied,
You thought that you would marry me when I wished to be free,
You thought that you would marry me, but that can never be.

I went back to my mother's house about twelve o'clock at night,
My mother she'd been waiting up and she got a terrible fright,
Oh son, dear son, what have you done, your bleeding hands and clothes,
And the answer that I thought best to give was bleeding at the nose.

I ask-ed for a candle to light me into bed,
Likewise for a handkerchief to bind around my head,
I twisted and I turned about, no comfort could I find,
For a flame of fire shone round me and she lay close behind.

They took me on suspicion, they dragged me down to jail,
There was no one there to plead my cause, no one to go my bail,
Her sister swore my life away without either fear or doubt,
She swore I was the young man that led her sister out.

Now all you gay young fellows wherever you may be,
Never spite your own true love with any cruelty,
For if you do you'll surely rue until the day you die,
You will hang just like this murderer upon the gallows high.


Walter Church emigrated briefly to Canada around the turn of the 19th/20th centuries, and learned enough songs from Irish friends there to earn the nickname "Paddy" when he returned to England. This particularly savage Irish localisation of the older, English song, became widely popular in America, alongside other versions directly descended from English sources.

A midi of the tune, together with the tune of "Shepherd" Hayden's Norfolk version referred to above, goes to Alan of Oz for the Mudcat Midi Pages; as a temporary measure until they appear there, they can be heard through these links, courtesy of the South Riding Folk Network:

The Wexford Murder

Hangèd I Shall Be

Malcolm


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Subject: RE: ADD: Hanged I shall be
From: GUEST,David Reeves
Date: 23 Dec 03 - 01:29 PM

The Bruce Olson web site has the following text:

The bloody Miller - Being a true an just Account of one Francis Cooper of Hocstow near Shrewbury

Hogstow Mill - still exists and is next door to what was my Grandfather's farm. It is located approx 8 miles SW of Shrewsbury on the A488 at a hamlet called Plox Green on the river Rea

I would be interested to know if any body has done a hitorical research: was a murder documented at this time?.


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Subject: RE: ADD: Hanged I shall be
From: Abby Sale
Date: 28 Jan 04 - 10:19 AM

David Reeves:

At the bottom of the entry, Bruce continues:

[ZN1998] Hyder E. Rollins, In The Pepys Ballads III, reprinted the ballad, and quoted a diary entry of Feb. 20, 1684, stating that the murder had been committed on the 10th, the Sabbath. G. M. Laws, Jr., in American Balladry from British Broadsides, commencing p. 104, quoted three later broadside versions, "The Berkshire Tragedy, or the Wittam Miller", "The Lexington Miller", and "The Cruel Miller", but did know about the 17th century original. It's well known traditionally (Laws' P 35).

The 17th century tune is not known, but comes from a broadside ballad "William Grismond" (on which ours here seems to be modeled), ZN1988, which has appeared in Scots tradition as "William Guiseman/Graham", and from that there are traditional tunes [Grieg-Duncan #190].



So many murders and dates are given for the song, though, that I'm sure it was revived every time a local murder could somehow be squoze into the facts as given in the song.


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Subject: Which singer does this:
From: Abby Sale
Date: 28 Jan 04 - 10:52 AM

A tune got into my head and I just can't recall enough phrases
to recall which it is. I'm thinking of a male non-source singer who isn't Carthy.

I guess it's a "Hanged I Shall Be" varient (which I can't necessarily distinguish from "Banks of the Ohio" varients) just because I'm sure 'July' is in there.   But...

This is all I can remenmber:
---
I asked her for to marry me
In the month of sweet July

...saying, Willie, please don't murder me
For I'm much too young to die

Flowing tide

asked .... for ... candle

But the murder, it was soon found out...

For the murder of sweet Marian
I am condemned to die
---

I'm getting so's it's common for me to remember the _end_ of a
song. I have to go through the whole thing backwards to figure out the
beginning. Doesn't work in this case.

Sorry I'm asking about a song with so very many varients. Any idea?


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Subject: RE: ADD: Hanged I shall be
From: GUEST,Pete Francis
Date: 25 Jul 05 - 09:15 AM

I'm a keen local historian and live just down the road from Hogstow in Shropshire. I've only recently come across the Bloody Miller story and I'd love to find out more. The mill incidentally is still there though not surprisingly now converted into two houses. Our local church records don't go that far back sadly and there seems to be no trace of the story in the Shropshire Archives collection. If anyone out there has any more info/details which would help me track it down I'd be very gratedul and happy to share the results on this website.


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Subject: RE: ADD: Hanged I shall be
From: Le Scaramouche
Date: 25 Jul 05 - 09:42 AM

It's probably just made up, or taken from bits and pieces of actual stories.


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Subject: RE: ADD: Hanged I shall be
From: Wolfgang
Date: 25 Jul 05 - 10:06 AM

Pete,

many here would love to read about the results of local research, but I doubt we can give much more information than is already in this thread. You have the location and date of the murder, the name of the murderer, the name of the victim, that should be a good start.

Wolfgang


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Subject: RE: ADD: Hanged I shall be
From: Big Al Whittle
Date: 26 Jul 05 - 02:02 AM

Free the Hogstow One! OK!


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Subject: RE: ADD: Hanged I shall be
From: GUEST,Pete Francis
Date: 02 Nov 05 - 11:08 AM

Bit of a breakthrough on the local research front! At the time, the nearby village of Minsterley did not have its own church so weddings, burials etc took place at Westbury (3 or 4 miles to the west).The register there contains the following entry:

1st March 1683 Anne Nicholas murdered (truculenter occisa) - burial

The latin phrase means something like 'savage death'. 1683 was the year before the ballad first appeared, so this is almost certainly the lady in question. There are a number of baptism entries which could refer to Anne and her murderer (Francis Cooper), the most likely of which would indicate that he was aged 27 at the time and she 23.

Most fascinating of all, however, is the following entry:

24th March 1683 Ichabod son of Fancis Cooper, homicide, and Anne - baptism.

I'm still trying to think through the implications of this but presumably it means that either Anne had already given birth before she was murdered (as opposed to being pregnant) or that the 'Hogstow One' had also fathered a child by another woman - also called Anne - before he was hung for his crime. Interestingly, the ballad collected by Pepys does refer (verse 8) to him having kept company with "another maid beside" so who knows. I think what I can at least confirm is that ballad was based on an actual historical event. If I find out any more I'll keep you all informed.


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Subject: RE: ADD: Hanged I shall be
From: GUEST,Pete Francis
Date: 02 Nov 05 - 11:41 AM

Bit of a breakthrough on the local research front! At the time (1683) the nearby village of Minsterley didn't have its own church and marriages, burials etc took place at Westbury (3 or 4 miles to the west). The records there contain the following entry:

1st March 1683 Anne Nicholas murdered (truculenter occisa) - burial

As far as I can tell, the latin phrase means something like 'savage death'. There are a number of baptism entries which could refer to Anne and her murderer (Francis Cooper), the most likely of which would mean he was 27 and she 23 at the time. Most interesting of all, however, is the following entry:

24th March 1683 Ichabod son of Francis Cooper, homicide, and Anne - baptism

I'm still trying to think through the implications of this but presumably it means either that Anne had already given birth when she was murdered (as opposed to just being pregnant) or that the 'Hogstow One' had fathered a child by another woman, also named Anne. Interestingly the ballad collected by Pepys (verse 8) does refer to him having kept company with "another maid beside" so who knows. I think I can at least confirm now that the original ballad is based on an historical event. If I find out any more I'll let you all know.


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Subject: RE: ADD: Hanged I shall be
From: Malcolm Douglas
Date: 02 Nov 05 - 09:24 PM

Thank you, Pete. Very interesting to have specific references to go with the details given with the original broadside. Bruce Olson (sadly no longer with us) would have been very pleased. Do keep us up to date on anything else you find.


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Subject: RE: ADD: Hanged I shall be
From: GUEST,steeleye
Date: 12 Feb 07 - 11:56 AM

What I don't understand is why the man in these songs kills the woman. There is no explanation in the song, it just tells how he does it and how he's sentenced after that. But why?


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Subject: RE: ADD: Hanged I shall be
From: Goose Gander
Date: 12 Feb 07 - 01:09 PM

The subtext is usually an unwanted pregnancy or another girl, or just maliciousness.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: Hanged I Shall Be
From: MGM·Lion
Date: 15 Dec 10 - 08:34 AM

As this thread has been fortuitously refreshed by one of those bits of silly spam, I will take opportunity to add that, as I remarked in a Folk Review article on 'Folksong in Thomas Hardy' in Folk Review Dec 1972,I have always taken it that a version of this song must have been the one mentioned in Tess Of The D'Urbervilles as being sung at their work by dairyman Mr Crick's milkmaids: "...fourteen or fifteen verses of a cheerful song about a murderer who was afraid to go to bed in the dark because he saw certain brimstone flames around him".

♫~Michael~♫


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