Ballads & Songs of Southern Michigan-songbook

A Collection of 200+ traditional songs & variations with commentaries including Lyrics & Sheet music

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180          Ballads and Songs of Michigan
66 THE BONNY LABORING BOY
For a nine-stanza text of this broadside song, with many additions and omis­sions, see O'Conor, pp 84-85. See also JFSS, I,206-207, and III, iio-iii; Frank Kidson and Mary Neal, English Fol\Song and Dance (Cambridge, 1915), p. 23; and Mackenzie, p. 119.
The present version was sung in 1934 by Mr. A. T. Heikes, Kalkaska, who learned the song in Windsor, Indiana.
i As I walked out one evening fair, it was in the month of early spring, I met a beautiful damsel fair, most grievously did sing, Saying, "Cruel was my parents, they did me so annoy. They would not let me marry with my bonny laboring boy.
2   "My parents they would have me wed to some great lord of peer, I being the only heiress of ten thousand pounds a year. Young Johnny was my true love's name, as you may plainly see, My father had him hired, his laboring boy to be.
3   "To plow, to hoe, to reap, to sow, and plow my father's land Until I fell in love with him, as you may understand.
For twelve long months I courted him, and little did I know That my cruel parents would prove our overthrow.
4   "They watched me close one evening while in the shady grove A-pledging our vows together in that constant bond of love. My father he stepped up to me and seized me by the hand,
He says, CI mean to banish young William unto some foreign land.'
5   "They locked me in my own bedroom, my comforts to annoy, They left me there to weep and mourn for my bonny laboring
boy.
6 "Says the mother to the daughter, 'Why do you act so strange To marry the poor laboring boy this wild world for to range? Some noble lord might fancy you, great riches to enjoy; Then do not throw yourself away with a silly laboring boy.'







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