Back By Popular Demand…….(maybe)

Back By Popular Demand…….(maybe)

See The Tow Path To The Right

So apparently…….

…..my older daughter told me that my little ditty of a folksong (The Erie Canal)…….

15 miles on the erie canal lyrics and history - dave ruch…..is not really common knowledge…….

…..(I thought everybody knew “Sal” and could sing along)…

…..I bet my cousin (Betty Joe Bob) can sing it…….(but then again—she did go through the same public school system that I did in northern Ohio in the ’50’s & ’60’s)…

…..hmmmmmmmm…….

Soooooooooooooo…….without further ado…….I have copied the lyrics and history of the folksong, “The Erie Canal” for your perusal and enjoyment…….

(my older daughter told me not to…..that it would be boring………….but, I’m going to anyway)

(she’s usually the voice of reason here…that I am ignoring today)…..

Original Lyrics for “The Erie Canal Song”

As originally copyrighted in 1912 and 1913, “Low Bridge! – Everybody Down” has five verses and five choruses!

Low Bridge! – Everybody Down
or, Fifteen Years On The Erie Canal

Words and music by Thomas S. Allen

I’ve got an old mule and her name is Sal, Fifteen years on the Erie Canal
She’s a good old worker and a good old pal, Fifteen years on the Erie Canal
We’ve hauled some barges in our day, Filled with lumber, coal and hay
And ev’ry inch of the way I know, From Albany to Buffalo

Chorus: Low bridge, ev’rybody down, Low bridge, we must be getting near a town
You can always tell your neighbor, You can always tell your pal
If he’s ever navigated on the Erie Canal

We’d better look ‘round for a job old gal, Fifteen years on the Erie Canal
You bet your life I wouldn’t part with Sal, Fifteen years on the Erie Canal
Giddap there gal we’ve passed that lock, We’ll make Rome ‘fore six o-clock
So one more trip and then we’ll go, Right straight back to Buffalo

Chorus: Low bridge, ev’rybody down, Low bridge, I’ve got the finest mule in town
Once a man named Mike McGinty tried to put it over Sal
Now he’s way down at the bottom of the Erie Canal

15 miles on the erie canal lyrics and history - dave ruchOh, where would I be if I lost my pal?, Fifteen years on the Erie Canal
Oh, I’d like to see a mule as good as Sal, Fifteen years on the Erie Canal
A friend of mine once got her sore, Now, he’s got a broken jaw
‘Cause she let fly with her iron toe, And kicked him into Buffalo

Chorus: Low bridge, ev’rybody down, Low bridge, I’ve got the finest mule in town
If you’re looking ‘round for trouble, better stay away from Sal
She’s the only fighting donkey on the Erie Canal

I don’t have to call when I want my Sal, Fifteen years on the Erie Canal
She trots from her stall like a good old gal, Fifteen years on the Erie Canal
I eat my meals with Sal each day, I eat beef and she eats hay
She ain’t so slow if you want to know, She put the “Buff” in Buffalo

Chorus: Low bridge, ev’rybody down, Low bridge, I’ve got the finest mule in town
Eats a bale of hay for dinner, and on top of that, my Sal
Tries to drink up all the water in the Erie Canal

The erie canal song, or 15 Miles on the Erie CanalYou’ll soon hear them sing all about my gal, Fifteen years on the Erie Canal
It’s a darned fool ditty ‘bout my darned fool Sal, Fifteen years on the Erie Canal
Oh, every band will play it soon, Darned fool words and darned fool tune
You’ll hear it sung everywhere you go, from Mexico to Buffalo

Chorus: Low bridge, ev’rybody down, Low bridge, I’ve got the finest mule in town
She’s a perfect, perfect lady, and she blushes like a gal
If she hears you sing about her and the Erie Canal.

Canal Barg Mules…..(But again I have to ask…..is one of these mules really “Sal”……And is this a photo of the Erie Canal?)

Fifteen miles was the common distance a mule or horse would work before resting

This is “a falsehood made up to explain a falsehood,” says Dan Ward, former curator at The Erie Canal Museum in Syracuse NY. Animals typically worked in six hour shifts, which could mean anywhere from 3-20+ miles depending on several factors including the number of locks they encountered and the volume of traffic.

The song was sung by the people who built (or worked on) the Erie Canal

Doubtful*. The song has not been found in oral tradition, or elsewhere, prior to its copyrighted date in manuscript form (1912).

History of the erie canal songThe canal had been enlarged twice and mechanized at that point, with steam engines supplanting most of the horse and mule power. It’s unlikely that anyone ever sang or hummed the song on the 19th-century towpath, though there were certainly other canal songs in circulation then.

*******Okay—–I want a show of hands now*******

————-Who thinks I should have included “Sal’s” history?

————-Who thinks this was all just doo-doo?

Moscow Mule

 

 

2 thoughts on “Back By Popular Demand…….(maybe)

    1. It’s all smoke in mirrors. I’m really just running in circles. My farm’s put together with duct tape and paperclips (I’m not allowed to use SuperGlue anymore…….and we’re not going to talk about the cutting wheel on the angle grinder). I think I’m excessively ADD, but I pre-date that diagnosis…….I’m just an obnoxious multi-tasker.
      …and I can type fast.

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