“In the Bar-Room (The Celebrated Working-Man)”

Author: Ed Foley
Earliest date: 1892 (reported to have been sung by the author at the wedding of a niece in that year)
Keywords: pride bragging drink mining work drink nonballad worker
Found in: Britain(England(North)) US(MA)

Description

Singer boasts of his abilities as a coal miner, saying he can hew more coal than anyone in the region, and if anyone doubts him, they should check out his abilities -- "and haven't I often proved it in the bar-room (public bar)"

Notes

This song, written by an American anthracite miner, took up residence in the mining districts of northern England and entered the tradition almost instantaneously. For once we have an idea of the connection; apparently the person who carried it across the water was Yankee Jim Roberts, an anarchist miner from Kentucky who settled in Co. Durham and became a union activist. The song also became part of the tradition in its native Pennsylvania, and was collected there by the Archive of Folk Song. - PJS

Recordings

References

  1. DT, CELEBWRK*
  2. Roud #3486
  3. BI, RcITBRCW