“Cripple Creek (I)”

Author: unknown
Earliest date: 1917 (Cecil Sharp collection); +1913 (JAFL28)
Keywords: fiddle courting river nonballad
Found in: US(Ap,SE)


Often found as a fiddle tune with words: "I got a gal at the head of the creek, Goin' up to see her 'bout the middle of the week...." "Goin' up to Cripple Creek, Goin' at a run, Goin' up to Cripple Creek to have a little fun." Most verses involve courting


The notes in Brown say that there was a gold rush at Cripple Creek, producing this song. But it's worth noting that the sources can't agree on the state in which Cripple Creek is located (Colorado, Virginia). - RBW

Cross references



  1. BrownIII 299, "Cripple Creek" (1 short text plus mention of 1 more)
  2. SharpAp 247, "Gone to Cripple Creek" (1 text, 1 tune)
  3. Lomax-FSNA 118, "Cripple Creek" (1 text, 1 tune)
  4. Botkin-AmFolklr, pp. 898-899, "Cripple Creek" (1 text, 1 tune)
  5. Rorrer, p. 83, "Shootin' Creek" (1 text, with recitation and verses partly derived from "Ida Red (I)")
  6. Silber-FSWB, p. 37, "Cripple Creek" (1 text)
  7. BrownIII 43, "Old Corn Licker" (a 2-line fragment, unclassifiable but with similarities to some texts of this song)
  9. Roud #3434
  10. BI, San320