ON THE TRAIL OF NEGRO FOLK-SONGS

A Collection Of Negro Traditional & Folk Songs with Sheet Music Lyrics & Commentaries - online book

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TRADITIONAL SONGS AND BALLADS
63
was generally sung in chanting style, with marked emphasis and the prolongation of the concluding syllables of each line. The tenor of the narrative indicated that the ' Galliant Gray Mar' was imported from Virginia to Kentucky to beat the 'Noble Skewball/ and the bard is evidently a partisan of the latter."
This article gives disconnected stanzas of the ballad, evidently considering that the reader would not be interested in the whole of it.
THE NOBLE SKEWBALL
O! ladies and gentlemen, come one, and come all; Did you ever hear tell of the Noble Skewball? Stick close to your saddle and don't be alarmed, For you shall not be jostled by the Noble Skewball.
Squire Marvin is evidently a judge of the race, for one stanza appeals to him.
Squire Marvin, Squire Marvin, just judge my horse well, For all that I want is to see justice done.
When the horses were saddled and the word was give, Got Skewball shot like an arrow just out of the bow.
The last stanza given is in complimentary vein.
A health to Miss Bradley, that Galliant Gray Mar, Likewise to the health of the Noble Skewball.
E. C. Perrow (in an article, "Songs and Rhymes from the South/' in the Journal of American Folk-lore, 1915, xxvin, 134) has a song from Mississippi Negroes which is apparently sung by the jockey who rode the "Noble Skewball" in the famous race.