Songs & Ballads Of The Maine Lumberjacks

A Collection Of Traditional & Folk Songs of the area with Lyrics & Commentaries -online book

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The Lumberman's Life
A, written down by a woodsman for W. H. Venning, Sussex, New Brunswick, 1904, was sent to Mrs. F. H. Eckstorm in 1904. She gave it to the editor in 1915. The ballad is well known in Maine, but is probably of New Brunswick origin. The following variant of lines in the fourth stanza was picked up by W. H. Hardy, of Brewer, Maine, in New York City from one who had heard a guide singing it in the Rangeley Lake region in the extreme west­ern part of Maine:
O the bears and the owls With their terrifying growls They do disturb my nightly rest.
Cf. "The Cowboy's Life," in Lomax's Cowboy Songs, pp. 20 f.
B, though somewhat different from A, is evidently related. It was printed as a broadside by Andrews, New York City, as " Com­posed and Written by Geo. W. Stace, La Crosse Valley, Wis." Later the same text was printed in Henry de Marsan's Comic and Sentimental Singer s Journal^o. 93,1, 708, as "Composed and Written by Geo. W. Stage." DeMarsan was Andrews's successor in business.
I            The lumberman's life
Is a wearisome one, But some say 't is free from all care;
With the ringing of an ax
From daylight until dark In the middle of some forest you'll hear.

E-Book - An Annotated Compendium of Old Time American Songs by James Alverson III