“The Maine-ite in Pennsylvania”

Author: unknown
Earliest date: 1926 (Rickaby)
Keywords: logger work river animal humorous
Found in: US(MW)

Description

"I landed safe in Williamsport in a lumberman's rendezvous, 'Twas there I hired with Jacob Brown as one of winter's crew." The singer serves six months in the wild country, talking of the waters and the great variety of animals

Supplemental text

Maine-ite in Pennsylvania, The
  Complete text(s)

          *** A ***

From Franz Rickaby, Ballads and Songs of the Shanty-Boy
(1926), #19, pp. 87-88. From Mr. W. H. Underwood of Bayport,
Minnesota.

I landed safe in Williamsport in a lumberman's rendezvous
'Twas there I hired with Jacob Brown as one of the winter's crew.
We agreed upon the wages, as you shall plainly see,
And the time of term it was six months to serve him faithfully.

It would melt your heart with pity, it would make your blood run cold
To see the work that Nature did in all her rudest mould,
And to see those overhanging rocks along the ice-bound shore,
Where the rippling waters fierce do rage and the cataracts do roar.

There's the tomtit and the moose-bird and the roving caribou;
The lucifee and pa'tridge that through the forests flew;
And the wild ferocious rabbit from the colder regions came;
And several other animals too numerous to name.

So to conclude and finish, I have one thing more to say;
When I am dead and in my grave, lying mould'ring in the clay,
No artificial German text you can for me sustain,
But simply say I'm a roving wreck right from Bangor, Maine.

Notes

This is a very strange little song: After one verse about hiring out, which could come from another lumbering song, the singer describes the territory in which he worked. But this description is so exaggerated as to be funny -- "the wild ferocious rabbit"? And Caribou are an arctic mammal. - RBW

References

  1. Rickaby 19, "The Maine-ite in Pennsylvania" (1 text, 1 tune)
  2. ST Rick089 (Full)
  3. Roud #7739
  4. BI, Rick089