Familiar Songs - Their Authors & Histories

300 traditional songs, inc sheet music with full piano accompaniment & lyrics.

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William Motherwell was but fourteen years old when he made the first draft of " Jeanie Morrison." The boy's nature was unusually delicate, and throughout his short life he was lovable and gentle. He was born in Glasgow, October 13, 1797. His father was an ironmonger. The family were in comfortable circumstances, and the poet received a fine education. He held some small government offices, and then became a newspaper editor. He had charge of three journals, and meantime edited his well-known "Minstrelsy, Ancient and Modern/' an edition of Burns, in connection with Hogg, a collection of " Scot­tish Songs," and " Scottish Proverbs." He also collected his own poetry, of which a few pieces are among the best loved in our language. He died at the age of thirty-eight.
While Motherwell was still very young, his parents moved to Edinburgh, and he was sent to school to William Lennie. To the same school came the pretty Jeanie Morrison, and we have the master's own quaint account of the " twa bairnies":
"William Motherwell entered my school, then kept at No. 8 Crichton street, in the neighborhood of George Square, on the 24th of April, 1805, and left it for the High School, on the 7th day of October, 1808. He was between seven and eight years old when he joined; an open-faced, firm, and cheerful-looking boy. He began at the alphabet, and though he did not, at first, display any uncommon ability, his mind soon opened up, and as he advanced in his education, he speedily manifested a superior capacity, and ulti­mately became the best scholar in the school; yet he never showed any of that petulant or supercilious bearing which some children discover, who see themselves taken notice of for the quickness of their parts. He was, on the contrary, kind and accommodating; always ready to help those who applied to him for assistance, and a first-rate hand for carrying on sport during the hours of recreation.
"Jane (Jeanie) Morrison was the daughter of one of the most respectable brewers and corn-factors then in Alloa. She came to Edinburgh, to finish her education, and was in my school, with William Motherwell, during the last year of his course. She was about