American Ballads and Folk Songs: page - 0162

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American Ballads and Folk Songs
Ringin' on de buildin',
Hammer ring,
Ringin' on de building
Hammer ring,
Doncha hear dat hammer?
Hammer ring,
Doncha hear dat hammer?
Hammer ring,
She's ringin' like jedgment,
Hammer ring,
She's ringin' like jedgment,
Hammer ring.
Oh, Lawd, dat hammer,
Hammer ring,
Oh, Lawd, dat hammer,
Hammer ring.
ROSIE
The authorities of the Mississippi State Farm occasionally allow the Negro men to entertain their feminine visitors as they please. Rosie, we think, is the prison counterpart of Mademoiselle from Armentieres, who comforted so many American soldiers during the last war. At any rate she has been immortalized in what is, perhaps, the most stirring of all prison work songs. This song, shouted out all day long under the "hot boiling sun" of Parchman, Mississippi, filled full of a fierce and bitter despair, can be compared in its effect on the hearer only with that famous English broadside, "Sam Hall." A group of convicts at Camp No. 1 of the Mississippi State Farm sang it for us late one evening after they had come in from a day's work in the fields, and what they sang is essentially unreproducible; for along with the singing one must hear the beat of their hoes on the hard ground, the shouted exclamations at intervals in the songó"Talk it to time,
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