THE PLAY-PARTY IN INDIANA - online book

Folk-Songs and Games with Descriptive Introduction, Notes, Sheeet music & Lyrics

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42                         The Play-Party in Indiana.
Farmer in the Well.
It is only for the sake of completeness that I include this game. Miss Hofer (Children's Singing Games, page 20) gives the same melody. Newell (Games and Songs of American Children, p. 129) gives practically the same tune and words as belonging to the New York game. That of Hornby (Joyous Book of Singing Games, p. 64) is nearly the same.
Mrs. Gomme (Trad. Games, vol. II, p. 420) prints a similar game, "The Farmer in His Den," from Auchencairn, N. B.
a.
1.    The farmer in the well, The farmer in the well, High-o merry o,
The farmer in the well.
2.    The farmer takes a wife, etc.
3.    The wife takes a child, etc.
4.    The child takes a nurse, etc.
5.    The nurse takes a dog, etc.
6.    The dog takes a cat, etc.
7.    The cat takes a rat, etc.
8.    The rat takes the cheese, etc.
9.    The cheese stands alone, etc.
b. All the players except one, join hands to form a circle, and circle left, during stanza 1. One stands in the center. At 2, the dancing and singing stop while the person in the center (the farmer) chooses from the circle, one who is to play the part of wife. The person chosen enters the center. Repeat the figure from the
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E-Book - An Annotated Compendium of Old Time American Songs by James Alverson III