The Traditional Ballad Index

An annotated source to folk song
from the English-speaking world

The Special Articles -- Version 6.4


Conflicts over the British Succession (Prior to the Jacobite Rebellions) [c. 600-1689] • Scottish History Cycle (excluding Jacobite songs) [1286-1411] • Jacobite Songs and Songs about the Orange and Hanoverian Successions [1692-1746] • The Irish Rebellion Cycle [1641-1947] • The French and Indian War and the Seven Years' War [1755-1759] • The American Revolution Cycle [1770-1783] • Napoleon and the Napoleonic Wars [1851-1821] • The War of 1812 Cycle [1812-1815] • The Australian History Cycle [1829-1917] • The Crimean War Cycle [1854] • The American Civil War Cycle [1857-1872] • The Arctic Exploration Cycle [1497-1913] • The Great Shipwrecks [1838-1942] • Newfoundland -- Its History, and Its Ships and Sealers [1851-1982] • Songs of World War I [1914-1917] • Songs of World War II [1935-1944] • Tales from Other Wars [1746-1903] • Outlaws and Pirates [1604-1922] • The History of LaborMiscellaneous Historical Events [1027-1958] • The Great Lakes [1855-?] • Christian Apocrypha and LegendsThe Earliest English BalladOther Topics

The Traditional Ballad Index was originally designed as a bibliography of folk song -- and, of course, it still functions as such. But, from the start, we incorporated occasional notes on the background of songs -- their history, or the events they described, or links to other non-traditional literature.

Some of these articles have now grown so extensive that they deserve to be noted in their own right, rather than forcing people to find them hit-or-miss. This document constitutes a catalog of the more substantial articles found in the Ballad Index notes.

Needless to say, you are invited to submit your own material for inclusion in the notes to some songs. You won't get academic credit, and we don't promise to include it -- but we might.

The list below tries to organize the information so as to be relatively easy to find. For these purposes, I've tried to organize the information into "cycles" or groups of related topics -- e.g. the American Civil War, the history of Irish rebellion, the exploration of the Arctic. In some cases, the result is literally a cycle -- the articles, if read in sequence, will tell a full history of a particular topic.

Each cycle is arranged as a table with a header referring to the general topic. The table itself contains four parts: The approximate dates of the events described, a brief summary of what is discussed, the name of the song under which the entry can be found, and the initials of the primary contributor(s) of the entry.

Note that a special article may apply to several songs -- an obvious example being the historical article on the Titanic associated with The Titanic (XV) ("On the tenth day of April 1912") (Titanic #15). Although this article is filed with this particular song, it in fact includes historical notes on every Titanic song in the Index. Similarly, the Phoenix Park Murders in Ireland inspired about a dozen songs, but the notes are all contained in the note (and historical references) to The Phoenix Park Tragedy.

As a general rule, I have only listed songs where the notes total over 500 words. The songs where the notes total over 2000 words show the song names in emphasized type.

Conflicts over the British Succession (Prior to the Jacobite Rebellions)

before 600The Arthurian Legend as found in English Ballads King Arthur and King Cornwall [Child 30]RBW
869/870Edmund of East Anglia is definitely dead. Somehow. Somewhere. SomewhenA Carol for St. Edmund's DayRBW
978The murder of Edward the Martyr (also, the subject of the earliest English ballad)Edward the MartyrRBW
1122?-1204The life and legend of Eleanor of Aquitaine. Queen Eleanor's Confession [Child 156]RBW
1199? 1399? 1483?Was Ritchie Story really King Richard? And, if so, which one?Richie Story [Child 232]BS, RBW
1327Hugh Spencer had feats in France. Hugh Despenser mostly had feats in the mind of King Edward II. Are they the same guy? Hugh Spencer's Feats in France [Child 158]RBW
1415 (1337-1453)The Hundred Years' War, and especially the Battle of Agincourt in 1415, cause Henry V to claim the crown of France -- and his descendents to lose it. King Henry Fifth's Conquest of France [Child 164]RBW
1483?Were the Babes in the Woods victims of Richard III? The Children in the Wood (The Babes in the Woods) [Laws Q34]RBW
1485The Battle of Bosworth -- the last battle (well, almost) of the Wars of the Roses ends the Plantagenet dynasty and brings Henry VII Tudor to the throne. He adopts the Red Rose as an emblem -- but was he a rose himself? The Battle of Bosworth Field; also
The Rose of England [Child 166]
1487The Battle of Stoke and Lambert Simnel's Rebellion and Waterford's loyalty to Henry VII: The many revolts against the first Tudor king The Mayor of Waterford's LetterBS, RBW
1491Perkin Warbeck and the British succession: More on the troubles of Henry VII The Praise of WaterfordBS, RBW
1537The death of Jane Seymour and the birth of Edward VI The Death of Queen Jane [Child 170]RBW
The conflict over the Protestant Succession: Could Britain remain a Protestant nation with a Catholic on the throne? And if not, who should succeed? And how could a courtier survive in those circumstances? The Vicar of BrayRBW
1689Is there really no other rhyme for Oranger? Or even a wife for him? What's the Rhyme to Porringer?RBW

Scottish History Cycle (excluding Jacobite songs)

1286Was the King's Daughter of Norrowa' really Margaret Maid of Norway? Sir Patrick Spens [Child 58]RBW
before 1299Thomas of Ercildoune: Landowner, definitely; poet, possibly; prophet, maybe.... Thomas Rymer [Child 37]RBW
1305Execution of Scotland's (eventual) hero William Wallace Gude Wallace [Child 157]RBW
c. 1315Will the real Sir Colin (Colling, Cawline) please stand up? Sir Cawline [Child 61]RBW
1346Who was first to publish about the Battle of Neville's Cross?Durham Field [Child 159]RBW
1371Was there a true conflict between "The Lord of Lorn and the False Steward"?Lord of Lorn and the False Steward, The [Child 271]RBW
1411In a Scotland without a central government, two factions battle over the Earldom of Ross. But -- how accurate is the song? The Battle of Harlaw [Child 163]RBW

Jacobite Songs and Songs about the Orange and Hanoverian Successions

1692The nature of The Massace at Glencoe The Massacre of GlencoeRBW
1710Did the Reverend Henry Sacherevell really "scratch out both his eyes" for political purposes? And what was he doing in Ninevah anyway?Johnny Lad (I)RBW
(1745-1746)The Battle of Culloden, with an overview of the Forty-Five Rebellion and the later career of Bonnie Prince Charlie The Muir of CullodenRBW
1746Flora MacDonald helps Bonnie Prince Charlie escape the Hanoverians -- and ends up in America Flora MacDonald's LamentRBW

The Irish Rebellion Cycle

Editor's Apology: A very large fraction of the songs in this section were first indexed due to their inclusion in Patrick Galvin's anthology of Irish freedom songs. Galvin's psychotic hatred of the British is so extreme that it inherently caused me to take a relatively pro-British view. I'm now trying to clean this out of the notes, trying to be as even-handed as possible. But it's a slow process, particularly since it's so hard to be absolutely objective about a conflict where one side bred mindless oppressors and the other side bred terrorists. Nonetheless, no nation has come closer to telling its history in song than has Ireland; this cycle of songs does an excellent job of relating the story of "the most distressful country."
1265At a time when English and Irish lords are indiscriminately raiding each other, the town of (New) Ross tries to protect itselfThe Entrenchment of Ross(BS), RBW
In the aftermath of the English Civil War, Oliver Cromwell takes fire and sword to Ireland, committing perhaps the worst single genocide between the Crusades and World War IThe Wexford MassacreRBW
1649Death of Owen Roe O'Neill, who had some success in fighting the English but whose behavior helped encourage Cromwell's atrocities General Owen RoeBS, RBW
The siege of [London]derry ends James II's hopes of gaining easy control of Ireland in his quest to regain the British throne. The Shutting of the Gates of Derry; also Derry Walls AwayBS, RBW
1690In the wake of the Glorious Revolution, the deposed king James II tries to use Ireland to rebuild his fortunes, but is defeated by William III at the Battle of the Boyne. The Battle of the Boyne (I)BS, RBW
1782Grattan's Parliament gives Ireland its greatest measure of independence prior to 1922. Sadly, it is too corrupt and feeble a legislature to last. Ireland's GloryBS, RBW
1795The Battle of the Diamond highlights the tension between Catholics and Protestants in Ulster.The Battle of the DiamondBS, RBW
1795Foundation of the Orange Order, devoted to maintaining as much power for Protestants as possibleThe Grand Mystic OrderBS, RBW
1796The French attempt to invade Ireland (to distract England), but the Bantry Bay expedition falls apartThe Shan Van VoghtBS, RBW
1798The planning for the rebellion of 1798, which sowed the grounds for its failure.The Wearing of the Green (I)BS, RBW
1798The planners of the 1798 rebellion are captured before they can even get the rebellion started. The one leader to remain at large is Edward Fitzgerald -- but he too is soon found and captured, dying of the wounds he suffered while resisting captureEdward (III) (Edward Fitzgerald)BS, RBW
1798The massacre of Protestants at Scullabogue Father Murphy (II) (The Wexford Men of '98)BS, RBW
1798After a promising start, the Wexford rebels turn victory into defeat at the Battle of New RossKelly, the Boy from KillaneRBW
1798Father John Murphy helps start the Wexford rising -- and is killed after its collapseFather Murphy (I)RBW
1798A Wexford rebel honestly and brutally examines the reasons the rebellion failedSweet County WexfordRBW
1798The Sheares Brothers, among the most important of the Irish rebel leaders (though not very famous) are hanged for their part in the events of 1798. Also the career of the poem's authoress "Speranza." The Brothers John and Henry ShearesRBW
1798The new viceroy Cornwallis tries to bring some degree of peace and justice after the 1798 rebellion -- though it is the Protestants who rejoice in the resultsThe TroublesBS, RBW
1801The Parliamentary Union of Britain and Ireland completely alters Irish politics -- and the economyDublin After the UnionBS, RBW
c. 1852
A catalog of the troubles of post-Union Ireland, with a cynical view of the politicians responsible The Wheels of the WorldBS, RBW
1803In the aftermath of the 1798 rebellion and the Act of Union, Robert Emmet tries to raise a rebellion. It fails pitifully, and Emmet is executed after making a stirring farewell speechBold Robert EmmetRBW
1828Daniel O'Connell, "The Liberator," runs for and is elected to Parliament. Eventually the parliamentary rules are changed, allowing men such as Fergus O'Connor to serve.Fergus O'Connor and IndependenceBS, RBW
1843At the "Monster Meeting of Tara," tens of thousands of Irish turn out to campaign for repeal of the Union between Britain and Ireland.The Meeting of TaraBS, RBW
The Irish Potato Famines cut the country's population in half and dramatically changes the political situation Over There (I - The Praties They Grow Small)RBW
1848Nationalist John Mitchel, who claims his only crime is loving Ireland, is convicted and transportedJohn MitchelRBW
1848One of the feeblest of all the Irish rebellions fizzles out without really even getting startedThe Shan Van Voght (1848) RBW, BS
1852Thomas Francis Meagher, convicted of anti-British activities, escapes and flees to the United StatesThe Escape of MeagherBS, RBW
James Stephens, founded the Fenians in 1858 -- though he largely dissociated himself from them in later years; he died in 1901, and is remembered in this songJames Stephens, the Gallant Fenian BoyRBW
1866The Fenians in American try to bring about Irish independence by attacking Canada. They fail spectacularlyA Fenian Song (I)RBW
1867The Manchester Martyrs: In the process of attempting to rescue a prisoner, the Fenians cause the death of a policeman. The actual murderer goes free, but three others are executed by the British for the crime The Smashing of the Van (I)RBW
1868William Johnston defies the Party Processions Act and becomes the hero of the radical Protestants of Ulster.William Johnston of Ballykilbeg BS, RBW
1871Irish nationalist Jeremiah O'Donovan Rossa is freed from prison on condition that he leave IrelandRossa's Farewell to Erin BS, RBW
1872The Irish Home Rule League is founded; although initially associated with Isaac Butt, it is Charles Stewart Parnell who does the most to advance the causeHome Rule for IrelandBS, RBW
1879The Land League places increasing pressure on the British to assure greater rights for tenants against their landlords The Bold Tenant FarmerRBW
c. 1880-
Charles Stewart Parnell becomes the dominant force in Irish politics and, by carefully playing off both sides in the British parliament, gains many freedoms for IrelandWe Won't Let Our Leader Run Down BS, RBW
The Phoenix Park Murders, in which an Irish secretary and his assistant are killed by terrorists, badly damaging the hopes for Irish "Home Rule." The Phoenix Park TragedyBS, RBW
1886Gladstone's Home Rule bill (which fails in the British parliament) inspires much hope in large parts of Ireland -- and fervent opposition among Ulster ProtestantsA Loyal Song Against Home RuleRBW
1914At a time when the British could least afford it, due to the coming of World War I, a riot over gun-running results in civilian casualties and an increase in Irish dislike for the English Bachelor's WalkRBW
1916The Easter Rebellion. Padraig Pearce and other nationalits attempt to take over Dublin, and are crushed. Reviled at first by the ordinary Irish, they are treated so badly by the British that the rebellion eventually changes the attitudes of all Ireland save the Protestants of Ulster. The Boys from County CorkRBW
1914Will the Irish accept "Home Rule" -- internal autonomy while maintaining ties to the British crown -- or insist on an independent republic?De ValeraRBW, BS
1916Roger Casement tries to run guns to the Irish nationalists, and -- given the consequences of the Easter Rebellion, plus the fact that it was the Germans who were arming him -- is hangedLovely Banna StrandRBW
1920Sean Treacy, nationalist and terrorist, is finally run down by the British and killed in a shootout; among nationalists, he became famous both for his many escapes and for his deathSean TreacyRBW
After the First World War, with Ireland in turmoil, the British brought in ex-soldiers, the Black and Tans, to try to control the violence. Having no sympathy for the Irish, the Black and Tans instead escalated the conflict. The Bold Black and TanRBW
1920The fight at Kilmichael: A random act of violence during a period of random acts of violence. This one serves to make Tom Barry famous. The Boys of KilmichaelBS, RBW
1921The fight at Crossbarry: Another random act of violence associated with Tom Barry. The Piper of CrossbarryBS, RBW
1921After the violence of the Black and Tan Wars, the English agree to negotiate with the Irish. The result is the "Treaty" creating the Irish Free State. Most Irish welcome peace; the extreme nationalists fight on -- against their own governmentThe Irish Free StateRBW
In the years after the Easter Rising, one man above all others comes to represent Ireland. Michael Collins hurt the British enough that they decided to negotiate, helped negotiate the Free State treaty, led the Irish Free State -- and was assassinated by hard-linersGeneral Michael CollinsRBW
1922In the wars over the Irish Free State, the former cabinet member Cathal Brugha is killed while in rebellion against the Irish government The Death of BrughRBW
1923After starting a civil war mostly over names and forms, the extreme republicans finally give in -- but the "Legion of the Rearguard" will not abandon the hope of a Republic.The Legion of the RearguardRBW
1947Death of James Larkin, who early in his career campaigned for worker's rights and independence in Ireland, but went into exile, then returned and spent many years as a relatively minor M.P.Jim Larkin, R.I.P.BS, RBW

The French and Indian War and the Seven Years' War

1755General Edward Braddock marches his men toward Fort Duquesne; his army is destroyed by the French and he is killedBraddock's DefeatRBW
1756The loss of Minorca and the execution of Admiral Byng Admiral ByngBS, RBW
1759Sir Edward Hawke wins the Battle of Quiberon Bay, giving the British naval superiority for the rest of the warBold HawkeRBW, BS
1759The Battle of Quebec, the English conquest of Canada, and the life of General James WolfeBrave Wolfe [Laws A1]RBW

The American Revolution Cycle

c. 1770-
British taxes on the American colonies cause increasing frustration with the crown, eventually causing the colonies into rebellion Taxation of AmericaRBW
1770It was bloody. But did the massacre really take place at "Butcher's Hall"?The Massacre at Butcher's HallRBW
1771Bloody suppression of the Regulators leads to more revolutionary agitation When Fanning First to Orange Came; also From Hillsborough Town the First of MayRBW
1775Granuaile, Ireland, and the American Revolution Old Granny Wales (Granny O'Whale, Granua Weal)RBW
1775Arnold and Montgomery's invasion of Canada proves a disastrous failure. Beside the KennebecRBW
1777The Battle of Bennington sets the stage for the great American victory at SaratogaRiflemen at BenningtonRBW
1777The Battle of Saratoga finally gives the Americans a major success in the Revolution.The Fate of John BurgoyneRBW
John Paul Jones, his battles, and his ships the Ranger and the Bonhomme RichardPaul Jones's Victory [Laws A4]RBW
1778(Brief biography of composer William Billings, plus notes about the British generals of the time)ChesterRBW
1780The American Revolution, the treason of Benedict Arnold, and the execution of British agent John AndreMajor Andre's Capture [Laws A2]RBW

Napoleon and the Napoleonic Wars

1815The Battle of Waterloo: Just which songs are included in Laws J3? The Plains of Waterloo (II) [Laws J3]BS, RBW
1815Marshal Grouchy: The cause of Napoleon's defeat? Napoleon Bonaparte (III)RBW
1815Marshal Ney: The cause of Napoleon's defeat? The Grand Conversation on NapoleonRBW
Napoleon is exiled and dies suspiciously on Saint HelenaNapoleon Is the Boy for Kicking Up a RowBS, RBW

The War of 1812 Cycle

1812The first Detroit campaign: British general Isaac Brock maneuvers the Americans out of the areaBrave General Brock [Laws A22]RBW
1812The American counter-attack on Canada is repulsed at Queenston Heights, but General Brock is killedThe Battle of Queenston HeightsRBW
1812The U.S.S. Constitution scores the first great naval win of the War of 1812, encouraging the Americans at a difficult time The Constitution and the Guerriere [Laws A6]RBW
1812The U. S. S. Hornet "stings" H. M. S. PeacockThe Hornet and the PeacockRBW
1813The duel of H.M.S. Shannon and U.S.S. Chesapeake gives the British a noteworthy victory -- but gives the Americans the slogan "Don't Give Up the Ship"The Chesapeake and the Shannon (I) [Laws J20]RBW
1813The Battle of Lake Erie and the career of Oliver Hazard Perry James Bird [Laws A5]RBW
Sundry successes by the American navy in the War Charge the Can CheerilyRBW
The Creek War. Andrew Jackson defeats a rebellious Indian nation, freeing him up for work against the British Andrew Jackson's RaidRBW
1814The Americans make one last attempt to invade Canada; they fight to a bloody stalemate at Lundy's Lane, and eventually retreat The Battle of BridgewaterRBW
1814The General Armstrong can't escape the British, but she makes them pay a high price for attacking herGeneral ArmstrongRBW
1814The British, in an attempt to break the stalemate, attack and burn Washington, D.C., but are repelled before Baltimore The Star-Spangled BannerRBW
1814A British army heads down the Champlain to attack the Americans as part of the grand 1814 strategy, but the officer in charge forces the navy to attack in unfavorable circumstances, then retreats when they are defeated The Siege of PlattsburgRBW
1815After the end of the War of 1812, British forces attack forces (from Kentucky and elsewhere) led by Andrew Jackson and are bloodily repulsed The Battle of New Orleans [Laws A7]RBW

The Australian History Cycle

1829The Cyprus mutiny briefly brings freedom for a gang of doubly-convicted felons Seizure of the Cyprus Brig in Recherche BayRBW
1830The death of Captain Patrick Logan brings some relief to the much-abused prisoners of Moreton Bay Moreton Bay (I)RBW
1830Death of John Donahue, the first of the famous bushrangers Jack Donahue [Laws L22]RBW
1860sWho was Charles R. Thatcher and why was he asking about licenses?Where's Your License?RBW
1865Death of Ben Hall, "The Noblest of the Bushrangers" Ben HallRBW
1880Destruction of the Kelly Gang, the last of the bushrangers Kelly Was Their CaptainRBW
1895?Banjo Paterson and "Waltzing Matilda": Just what was his role in the making of the song?Waltzing MatildaMK, RBW
1903Steele Rudd published On Our Selection. Did someone really make a song about it?Stir the Wallaby StewRBW
1917Les Darcy is dead. But why?Les DarcyRBW

The Crimean War Cycle

1854British and French forces win the Battle of Alma to establish their base for the Crimean War The Heights of Alma (I) [Laws J10]RBW
1854In the supreme example of the mismanagement of the Crimean War, the Light Brigade rides to a lot of death and somewhat less glory at Balaclava The Famous Light BrigadeRBW
1854Sir Colin Campbell, the organization of the British Army, and victory in the Crimean WarThe Kilties in the CrimeaRBW
1854The Baltic campaign against Russia brought relatively little fighting -- and at least one happy endingThe Baltic LoversBS, RBW

The American Civil War Cycle

The Lincoln, Douglas and the coming of the Civil War: How the North came to elect an all-but-unknown man from Illinois to be President Lincoln and LibertyRBW
More on Lincoln and Douglas, and on the latter's financial practicesLincoln Hoss and Stephen A.RBW
1859 &
Which John Brown was the body in question? John Brown's BodyRBW
1861The First Battle of Bull Run/Manasses results in the complete rout of Union forcesThe Battle of Bull Run [Laws A9]RBW
1861Missouri's War-Within-a-War The War in Missouri in '61RBW
1862?A Union soldier dies after some battle somewhere sometime. The Battle of Mill Springs [Laws A13]RBW
1861The Bucktails get their baptism of fire at New CreekThe Bucktail BoysRBW
The Irish Sixty-Ninth: Which regiment was it and what did it do? The Irish Sixty-NinthRBW
1861How the Irish "won" at Bull Run -- if they did. The Gallant Sixty-NinthRBW
1862Daniel Martin fights for... one side or the other... at the Battle of Pea RidgeThe Battle of Elkhorn Tavern, or The Pea Ridge Battle [Laws A12]RBW
1862The Battle of Hampton Roads: The C.S.S.Virginia/Merrimac destroys the U.S.S. Cumberland and Congress but is held to a draw by the Monitor The Cumberland Crew [Laws A18]RBW
1862How the occupation of Confederate territory meant freedom for many SlavesKingdom Coming (The Year of Jubilo)RBW
1862Horatio van Cleve wins the battle of Stones River -- with a lot of help from the people who really did most of the fightingThe Battle of Stone RiverRBW
1862?Joseph Shelby wasn't there and didn't do it, but apparently gets the blame anyway. Colonel ShelbyRBW
1862Who was Charles G. Halpine, and why was he pretending to be a private in the 47th New York? We've Drunk from the Same CanteenRBW
The Union makes repeated attempts to take Richmond; all fail, with Confederate jeers becoming more pointed each time Richmond is a Hard Road to TravelRBW
The Irish Brigade of Thomas Meagher suffers extreme casualties as part of the Army of the PotomacBy the HushRBW
1863The Fifty-Fourth Massachusetts is willing to fight. Will the government acknowledge the fact? Give Us a FlagRBW
1863Murder of Earl Van Dorn, general, landowner, seducer....Oh You Who Are Able....RBW
1863The capture of Vicksburg changes the course of the Civil War -- but that doesn't help the dead!The Battle of VicksburgRBW
1863?If Longstreet didn't have any Rangers, who was it that was fighting at the Rapidan in the song "Longstreet's Rangers"? The Texas Rangers [Laws A8]RBW
1864The Confederacy is forced to indelicate means to meet its desperate need for saltpeterChamber LyeRBW
1864A late defeat for Jubal Early -- although not at Fisher's HillBattle of Fisher's HillRBW
1864Sherman's March to the Sea can't come soon enough for Samuel H. M. ByersSherman's March to the SeaRBW
1872The Grant presidency rouses opposition from all sides, but Horace Greeley is unable to replace himDoes Your Mother Know You're Out?RBW

The Arctic Exploration Cycle

1497John Cabot goes somewhere and discovers something. Where and what? That is the question.... The Landfall of CabotRBW
John Ross is bold, brave -- and stuck in the ice. Bold Adventures of Captain RossRBW
The Franklin expedition seeking the Northwest Passage and the search for the expedition after it vanished Lady Franklin's Lament (The Sailor's Dream) [Laws K9] RBW
The quest to reach the North Pole, which at the time this song was written (1903) had been very difficult and dangerous Hurrah for Baffin's BayRBW
The career of Robert Bartlett, Newfoundland sealer and companion of Robert Peary as the latter sought the North Pole Captain Bob BartlettRBW

The Great Shipwrecks

1838The Forfarshire wreck makes Grace Darling an English heroineGrace Darling (I) (The Longstone Lighthouse)BS, RBW
1863The sinking of the Anglo Saxon, still considered the worst wreck off Cape Race, Newfoundland Loss of the Anglo SaxonRBW
1873The sinking of the Atlantic, the earliest of the great tragedies on the North Atlantic liner routes The Loss of the Atlantic (I)RBW
1855?Where and when was the Antelope lost? And which Antelope? The Loss of the AntelopeRBW, Sol Foster
1893HMS Victoria is rammed by the Camperdown and sinksWhen the Flagship Victoria Went DownRBW
1912The destruction of the Titanic and the historical basis (or lack thereof) for the claims made in many songs about the wreck The Titanic (XV) ("On the tenth day of April 1912") (Titanic #15)RBW
1915The sinking of the Lusitania and the various claims made about the sinkingThe LusitaniaRBW
1918The wreck of the Florizel and mystery of what happened.The Wreck of the Steamship FlorizelRBW
1922What would you do if a brand-new warship happened to get wrecked just outside your home?The Nordfeld and the RaleighSH, RBW
1934The burning of the cruise liner Morro Castle and the real (and slightly unreal) proposed explanations of what happened.Morro Castle DisasterRBW
1942The torpedoing of the Caribou and the Battle of the St. LawrenceThe Loss of the CaribouRBW

Newfoundland -- Its History, and Its Ships and Sealers

1497John Cabot discovers Newfoundland, or somewhere, sometime, with the help of someoneThe Landfall of CabotRBW
1851-1930Life of Johnny Burke, Newfoundland's leading popular songwriterThe Kelligrews SoireeRBW
1855Birth of Abram Kean, the greatest Newfoundland sealer (at least in terms of pelts taken) of all timeCaptain Abram KeanRBW
c. 1860?The sealers of Ferryland think they have a good trip. The merchants might not agree. Plus, when did the sealers give up their schooners?The Ferryland Sealer (The Sealers) [Laws D10]RBW
1860Crown Prince Edward visits the St. John's regattaThe Terra Nova RegattaRBW
1861Violence erupts in St. John's after the Conservatives pull tricks to force, and then win, an election The Riot in St. John'sRBW
1863The sinking of the Anglo Saxon, still considered the worst wreck off Cape Race, Newfoundland Loss of the Anglo SaxonRBW
1867?Just what were Captain Bill Ryan and Terry doing when they separated anyway?Captain Bill Ryan Left Terry BehindRBW
1867Captain William Jackman saves an entire ship's crew and creates a legendCaptain William Jackman, A Newfoundland HeroRBW
1873Construction begun on the Neptune, the only Newfoundland sealer to take a million sealsNeptune, Ruler of the SeaRBW
1876?Which ship lost her Spanish Captain near Cape Spear?The Spanish CaptainSH, BS, RBW
c. 1887Polina? Polynia? Balaena? What's in a name?The Old PolinaRBW
c. 1890A catalog of sealing ships and sealing menSealer's Song (I)RBW
1898The loss of dozens of men from the GreenlandThe Greenland Disaster (I)RBW
1901Robert Bartlett, later companion of Robert Peary, begins his sealing careerCaptain Bob BartlettRBW
1902A strike leads to (slightly) better conditions for sealersThe Sealer's Strike of 1902 (The Sealers Gained the Strike)RBW
1902?A sealing ship pays the price for getting stuck in the iceThe "Kite" Abandoned in White BayRBW
c. 1902A catalog of sealing ships and sealing menArrival of "Aurora," "Diana," "Virginia Lake," and "Vanguard," LoadedRBW
1904When did the Aurora and Walrus first arrive first?First Arrival -- "Aurora" and "Walrus" FullRBW
1906A catalog of the seal hunt (of 1906)The Sealer's Song (II)RBW
1907How a storm almost killed the crew of the SnorreThe Loss of the SnorreRBW
c. 1907Why the Nimrod ceased to be a sealer and became an exploration shipThe Nimrod's SongRBW
1908Disastrous year for fishermen which allows William F. Coaker, Newfoundland's first great labour organizer, to organize the Fisherman's Protective UnionCoaker's DreamRBW
1909The Newfoundland Railroad, a disaster both financial and political, brings hard times to its workers as wellThe Bonavist LineBS, RBW
1910A catalog of the seal hunt (of 1910)Captains and ShipsRBW
1910The Regulus is lost with all handsThe Loss of the RegulusRBW
1911After more than a dozen years of service, the Bruce finally fails on its ferry runThe Loss of the BruceRBW
1912Just who took the most seals in 1912, anyway?First Arrival from the Sea Fishery S. S. Fogota, 1912RBW
1914The sealers of the Newfoundland are left on the ice to die.The Newfoundland Disaster (I)RBW
1914The loss of the Southern CrossThe Southern Cross (I)RBW
1918The wreck of the Florizel and mystery of what happened.The Wreck of the Steamship FlorizelRBW
1919The Ethie was wrecked, but does a dog get the credit?The Wreck of the Steamship EthieRBW
1922An airplane looking for a patch of seals sights -- a patch of something-or-otherCotton's Patch (I)RBW
1922The Raleigh, a British cruiser, goes hard aground in LabradorThe Nordfeld and the RaleighRBW
1924Three sailors from the Terra Nova die in a sealing accidentThe Terra NovaRBW
1926The Ella M. Rudolph pays for a late journey homeThe Ella M. RudolphRBW
1927A hurricane causes great damage in eastern Canada and Newfoundland, sinking four Lunenberg shipsThe Gale of August '27RBW
1928Who are all those people hunting squid?The Squid-Jiggin' GroundRBW, BS
1929Harps and Cats: Not What You ThinkThe Sealing Cruise of the Lone FlierRBW
1931The Viking explodes, killed members of a film crew as well as some of the ship's crewTo the Memory of the Late Captain KennedyRBW
1942The torpedoing of the Caribou and the Battle of the St. LawrenceThe Loss of the CaribouRBW
1946Urged on by Joseph Smallwood, Newfoundland becomes part of Canada -- but not everyone agrees with the idea Anti-Confederation Song (II)RBW
1950The Eagle, the last of the wooden wall sealers, is scuttled because she is too old to serve any longerLast of the Wooden Walls; The Ice-FloesRBW
c. 1951It may be a noble fleet of sealers, but it isn't a very noble set of shipsA Noble Fleet of SealersRBW
1954 &
Joseph Smallwood resettles the people of Newfoundland The Blow Below the BeltRBW
1959Poor loggers in Newfoundland try to improve their situation, turning the government against themThe Loggers' PlightBS, RBW
1982The Ocean Ranger oil platform sinks in a severe storm, with all her crew being lost In MemoriamRBW
after 1913Why, when they talked in the Steamroom, it had to be on the KyleSteamroom on the KyleRBW

Songs of World War I

1914Oh where, oh where has the Goeben gone?Dardanelles Patrol SongRBW
1914So that's why H. M. S. Kent was coaling, coaling, coalingCoal Ship Song (III)RBW
1914The "noble" eighth of December costs the German noble Graf von SpeeThe Noble Eighth of DecemberRBW
1915The sinking of the Lusitania and the various claims made about the sinkingThe LusitaniaRBW
1917The Halifax Explosion: A ship collision causes a load of munitions to blow up, nearly destroying the cityThe Halifax Explosion [Laws G28]RBW

Songs of World War II

?Just how high do those German planes fly, anyway? I Was Chasing One-ElevensRBW
?Was the Wellington bomber truly Wimpy? Ops in a WimpeyRBW
1939A British force catches up with the German Admiral Graf Spee off South America and causes her to scuttle. The Sinking of the Graf SpeeRBW
c. 1940Was the Ariadne a tiddley ship, or was that the Nelson, Rodney, Renown, Hood?She's a Tiddley ShipRBW
1940The Jervis Bay fights a hopeless fight against the German Admiral Scheer, saving most of the ships in her convoy.The Jervis BayRBW
c. 1940So many S-boats, so little time!Twelve Little S-BoatsRBW
1941An unofficial war moves toward being more official when a German submarine sinks the U. S. S. Reuben JamesReuben JamesRBW
1941When the Bismarck destroys the Hood, most of Britain feels the lossThe Sinking of HMS HoodRBW
1941The Mosquito finally gives the British a bomber good enough that the crews survive to complain about what they were ordered to do in it692 SongRBW
1941Did the B-17 Flying Fortress really carry "bags of ammunition and a teensy-weensy bomb"?Flying FortressesRBW
1942Canadian patrol planes make their mark against Japan413 SquadronRBW
1942A horrid voyage aboard a ship nicknamed Horrible saves a Russian convoyThe Kola RunRBW
c. 1942About the tough conditions on the Arctic convoy route23rd FlotillaRBW
c. 1942A catalog of the dangers faced by the ships on the Russian convoy routeRussian Convoy Escort's SongRBW
1943The ships of the "Barber Pole Brigade" make many tough trips between Londonderry and St. John'sBeneath the Barber PoleRBW
1943What the Highlanders felt leaving SicilyBanks of Sicily (The 51st Highland Division's Farewell to Sicily)RBW
1943The troops in Italy aren't dodging D-Day; they're dodging bulletsThe D-Day DodgersRBW
1943?You think the enemy planes are dangerous? Try the paperwork....A-25RBW
1944"Uncle Percy" Nelles sent home from his Navy jobWearing of the Green (III -- Canadian Navy)RBW
1944The Canadian destroyer Athabaskan is destroyed by a smaller German torpedo-boatAthabaskan's FinishRBW

Tales from Other Wars

1746The Nottingham, under a captain who was neither Irish nor named Somerville, defeats the MarsWarlike SeamenRBW
1799During the Quasi-War with France, Thomas Truxton leads the Constellation to victory over L'Insurgente -- the first significant victory of the new U. S. NavyTruxton's VictoryRBW
1837-1838Mackenzie's Canadian rebellion and the Battle of the Windmill The Battle of the WindmillRBW
1845During the War of the Austrian Succession, a French force (which includes an Irish Brigade) beats a partly-English army at Fontenoy The Brigade at FontenoyRBW, BS
Santa Anna and Zachary Taylor: Just who did win that battle, anyway?Santy AnnoRBW
1846The Americans win at Monterrey, but the victory is expensive.... The Field of MontereyRBW
1862?Is the Indian raid of the Haunted Woods/Haunted Falls really related to the 1862 Dakota Conflict (Sioux Uprising)?Haunted WoodsRBW
1898The casualties on the Maine were heavy, whoever sank herMy Sweetheart Went Down with the MaineRBW
A handful of South Africans of Irish ancestry form an "Irish Brigade" during the Boer War; John McBride is their commander for part of that timeJohn McBride's BrigadeRBW, BS
1903Suicide of the brilliant general Hector MacDonald Hector MacDonaldBS, RBW
c. 1900?Were baboons really marching on the South African capital in the reign of Queen Victoria?
Marching to Pretoria

Outlaws and Pirates

1604?Captain Ward: Pirate, privateer, or both? And did he reign king on the sea?Captain Ward and the Rainbow [Child 287]RBW
1696Would spelling his name wrong make Henry Every/Avery any less a pirate? Captain EveryRBW
William Kidd was executed as a pirate -- but was he a pirate or a privateer?Captain Kidd [Laws K35]RBW
He may have been called Teach, but Maynard taught him.... Teach the RoverRBW
Dick Turpin: Certainly a highwayman. But did he make a 12 hour ride to Yorkshire? And if he didn't, who did? My Bonny Black Bess (II) (Poor Black Bess; Dick Turpin's Ride) [Laws L9]RBW
1774Jack Rann's fine clothes can't keep him from the scaffoldSixteen String JackRBW
1807Naomi Wise is pregnant for the third time by three different men. And none of them will marry her....Poor Omie (John Lewis) (Little Omie Wise) [Laws F4]RBW
1831Frankie Silver: Murderer? Abuse victim? Or both?Frankie Silvers [Laws E13]RBW
1844Patsy Beasly found deadThe Murder of Patsy BeasleyRBW
Jesse James: Confederate veteran. Robber. Killed by Robert Ford. But was he really a friend to the poor? Jesse James (III)RBW
1860Albert Hicks tries to capture his own ship. It doesn't work out well for anyone.Hicks the PirateRBW
1864First of several murders by Lydia ShermanLydia ShermanRBW
1868Te Kooti, imprisoned without trial or charge, escapes and puts New Zealand in fear. Te KootiRBW
1876The robbing of the Northfield Bank, resulting in the apprehension of Cole Younger and his brothers; the James Brothers escaped Cole Younger [Laws E3]RBW
1878The Hatfield-McCoy Feud: Where are the songs about it?The Death of Fan McCoyRBW
1881The end of the confusing life of Billy the Kid. Or whatever his real name was. Billy the Kid (I)RBW
1884The founding of the Bald Knobbers, who brought vigilante law to southern Missouri for several years The Bald Knobber SongRBW
1892Alec Whitley lynched in North Carolina for a murder in ArkansasAlex WhitleyRBW
1894The hanging of John Hardy for murderJohn Hardy [Laws I2]RBW
1800s?Some ship captain, somewhere, tortures a sailor to death Captain James (The Captain's Apprentice)
and The Captain's Apprentice (II)
1903It wasn't even his feud, exactly, but J. B. Marcam still ended up deadJ. B. Marcum (A Kentucky Feud Song) [Laws E19]RBW
1904The death of Harvey Logan, the wildest of the "Wild Bunch"Harvey Logan [Laws E21]RBW
1906Petty criminal Chester Gillette finds a way to deal with a pregnant girlfriend he doesn't wantGrace Brown and Chester Gillette [Laws F7]RBW
1908Not even a house fire can conceal the victims of Indiana's greatest murdererBelle GunnessRBW
1912The Allen Family of Virginia learns that shooting a judge is not a good way to prove your innocence.Sidney Allen [Laws E5]RBW
1922The hanging of Frank Dupre for murderDupree [Laws I11]RBW
1930Otto Wood, one of the most curious outlaws of all time, finally meets his fateOtto Wood the BanditRBW

The History of Labor

1876Muff Lawler helps send many accused Molly Maguires to deathMuff Lawler, the Squealer [Laws E25]RBW
1876Jimmy Kerrigan also did his part to convict the MolliesJimmy Kerrigan's ConfessionRBW
1877On "Black Thursday," Thomas Duffy and nine other possible Molly Maguires are executedThomas Duffy;
Michael J. Doyle;
The Doom of Campbell, Kelly and Doyle;
Hugh McGeehan
1892The Homestead StrikeThe Homestead StrikeRBW
The Pullman Strike and the American Railway UnionA. R. URBW
1902A strike leads to (slightly) better conditions for sealersThe Sealer's Strike of 1902 (The Sealers Gained the Strike)RBW
1915The state of Utah executes songwriter Joe Hill. If he didn't commit robbery and murder, who did?Joe HillRBW
1929The Gastonia-Loray Strike and the murder of Ella Mae Wiggins Chief AderholtRBW
1930The death of Mary Harris "Mother" JonesThe death of Mother JonesRBW
1947Death of James Larkin, who early in his career campaigned for worker's rights and independence in Ireland, but went into exile, then returned and spent many years as a relatively minor M.P.Jim Larkin, R.I.P.BS, RBW
1959Poor loggers in Newfoundland try to improve their situation, turning the government against themThe Loggers' PlightBS, RBW

Miscellaneous Historical Events

1027Gunhild daughter of Cnut is betrothed to Henry of the Holy Roman Empire, and is charged with a crime she did not commit. Did this inspire a ballad -- or was it the tale of Joseph?Sir Aldingar [Child 59]RBW
1591Death of Sir Richard Grenville, Elizabethan corsair and non-supplier of colonies.In Praise of Seafaring Men, in Hope of Good FortuneRBW
1685Did Charles II's courtiers really get compared to crows? Carrion CrowRBW
1720The South Sea Bubble. The real First Stock Market Manipulation CrashFor Our Lang Biding Here (A South Sea Song)RBW
1782The Royal George has a very bad day in port.The Sinking of the Royal GeorgeRBW
1791The Lady Washington, attacked by Indians, returns the favor with interest. The Bold Northwestern Man [Laws D1]RBW
1791Arthur St. Clair's army smashed by Indians -- but, somehow, he keeps his job. Saint Clair's DefeatRBW
1797The Nore Mutiny. British sailors attempt a strike for better conditions. Eventually the attempt collapses, and the ringleader Peter Parker is tried and executedPoor ParkerRBW
1825The Kentucky Tragedy: Two lovers try to cheat the hangman by killing themselvesColonel SharpRBW
1828The Burke and Hare Murders. Two Irishmen in Scotland commit multiple murders in order to sell the bodies to doctors. Only one of them is executed. Burke's ConfessionRBW, BS
1828The murder of Maria Marten by her ex-lover. The Murder of Maria MartenRBW, BS
1832The Rival, carrying volunteers to Portugal, sinks with many casualtiesThe Brave VolunteersJM, BS
1838American Congressman Jonathan Cilley killed in a duel that isn't even with the correct opponentThe Death of Cilley (The Duelist)RBW
1844The murder of Patsy Beasley by... someone. The Murder of Patsy BeasleyRBW
1855How Woody Guthrie put his own spin on the Yakima War -- then retracted itRoll On, ColumbiaRBW
1855-1866Cyrus Field lays the Atlantic Cable. Again, and again, and again.The Atlantic Cable (How Cyrus Laid the Cable)RBW
1857A party of settlers headed for California is slaughtered by Mormons disguised as Indians. To this day, it is not entirely clear who was responsible The Mountain Meadows Massacre [Laws B19]RBW
1862Joseph Morris has visions of the second coming -- but somehow can't see how much trouble he's in with the lawThe Morrisite MassacreRBW
1866Somebody killed poor Laura Foster. But was it Tom Dula? Tom DooleyRBW
1868Te Kooti, imprisoned without trial or charge, escapes and puts New Zealand in fear. Te KootiRBW
1872Horace Greeley's Presidential campaign Does Your Mother Know You're Out?RBW
1878Death of Orrin Porter Rockwell, widely believed to have been a Mormon strong manOld Port RockwellRBW
1881The amalgamation of the Cameronian Regiment The Tam O'Shanter HatRBW, BS
1881The murder of James A. Garfield and the trial of his assassin Charles Guiteau [Laws E11]RBW
1885The Siege of Khartoum. The British defenders under "Chinese" Gordon are defeated and killed just days before they can be rescuedAndy McElroeRBW
1885Professional gambler Harry Hayward murders Kitty Ging for insurance, but is detected and executedThe Harry Hayward SongRBW
1885?Great Lakes race between the Moonlight and the PorterThe Crack Schooner MoonlightRBW
1889The Johnstown Flood: An earthen dam fails and destroys several towns below it at a cost of over 2000 livesThe Johnstown Flood [Laws G14]RBW
1889The Nebraska Farmers' Alliance can't win the fight against the two parties with their votes, so Mrs. J. T. Kellie takes up the fight with her penMarching for FreedomRBW
Johnson County, Wyoming is the site of a cattle conflict -- but who was on which side of the "War"?The Blood-Stained DiaryRBW
1893HMS Victoria is rammed by the Camperdown and sinksWhen the Flagship Victoria Went DownRBW
1894Coxey's Army gets disciplinedA Song of the Times (III)RBW
1898The murder of twelve-year-old Emma Hartsell results in vigilante justice in North CarolinaEmma Hartsell [Laws F34]RBW
1900The Galveston Hurricane produces one of the worst disasters in American history to this timeMighty Day (Wasn't That a Mighty Storm)RBW
1901Disappearance of Nell Cropsey. Her boyfriend takes the blame, but the facts remain unclear.Nell Cropsey (I)RBW
1905Assassination of former Idaho governor Frank SteunenbergHarry OrchardRBW
1912It makes no difference if he is a hound, You gotta quit kicking Champ Clark around The Hound Dog SongRBW
1912Election of Woodrow Wilson (re-elected 1916) President WilsonRBW
1913The Murder of Mary Phagan: Was Leo Frank really responsible? And what is the history of the song? Mary Phagan [Laws F20]RBW
1915The state of Utah executes songwriter Joe Hill. If he didn't commit robbery and murder, who did?Joe HillRBW
1916The Great North Carolina Flood kills many. Who did it kill on Jack's Branch?The Brushy Mountain FreshetRBW
1917The Halifax Explosion: A ship collision causes a load of munitions to blow up, nearly destroying the cityThe Halifax Explosion [Laws G28]RBW
1921Betty loves DuPre. She loves diamonds even more.Dupree [Laws I11]RBW
Life of Thomas E. Watson, populist, presidential candidate, reformer, bigot....Thomas E. WatsonRBW
1925Floyd Collins gets trapped in a cave, and Andrew Jenkins isn't much helpFloyd Collins [Laws G22]RBW
1928What happens when Calvin Coolidge encounters the Wisconsin wilderness? I Do Not Choose to RunRBW
1929A cheap liquor adulterant results in an epidemic of paralysis Got the Jake Leg TooRBW
1937Death of champion rider Pete KnightPete KnightRBW
1958The third great disaster in the Springhill mines finally results in the closing of the coalfieldsSpringhill Mine Disaster (1958)RBW, (PJS)

The Great Lakes

1855?Where and when was the Antelope lost? And which Antelope? The Loss of the AntelopeRBW, Sol Foster
1885?Great Lakes race between the Moonlight and the PorterThe Crack Schooner MoonlightRBW
?Just which schooner was filled with Red Iron Ore?Red Iron Ore [Laws D9]Sol Foster and RBW
?The real story of the BiglerThe Bigler's Crew [Laws D8]Sol Foster, RBW, etc.

Christian Apocrypha and Legends

A Freemason's take on the BibleThe Building of Solomon's Temple [Laws Q39]RBW
Beware of Magoi Bringing Gifts.... Also, MS. Bodleian Eng. Poet. e.1 (29734)The Golden Carol (The Three Kings)RBW
Jesus, Mary, and the miraculous fruitThe Cherry-Tree Carol [Child 54]RBW
The Embellishment of the Judas legend and the evolution of balladsJudas [Child 23]RBW
Non-canonical tales of Jesus The Carnal and the Crane [Child 55]RBW
Glory to God in the... what's that again? Angels We Have Heard on HighRBW
Babylon is Fallen -- again? How many times is that now?Babylon Is Fallen (I)BS, RBW
The Massacre of the Innocents and the Mystery Plays The Coventry CarolRBW
Jews, innocents, miracles, and pogroms Sir Hugh, or, The Jew's Daughter [Child 155]RBW
Dancing and ChristianityMy Dancing DayRBW
For Saint George and England!Padstow May Day SongRBW
The Corpus Christi MysteryThe Corpus Christi CarolRBW
Did other singers know the legend in Judas [Child 23]?My Heart Is Woe (When That My Sweet Son Was Thirty Winter Old)RBW

The Earliest English Ballad....

c. 975The Earliest English Ballad? [I]Edward the MartyrRBW
c. 1025The Earliest English Ballad? [II]Merie Sungen the Muneches Bennen Ely (Merry Sang the Monks of Ely)RBW
c. 1050?The Earliest English Ballad? [III]The Cursed Dancers of ColbeckRBW
c. 1200The Earliest English Ballad? [IV]Judas [Child 23]RBW
c. 1200The Earliest English Ballad? [V]Wolle Ye Iheren of Twelte DayRBW
c. 1225The Earliest English Ballad? [VI]Mirie It Is While Sumer Ylast (Merry It Is While Summer Lasts)RBW
c. 1400The Earliest English Ballad? [VII]Sir Aldingar [Child 59]RBW

Other Topics

The Embellishment of the Judas legend and the evolution of ballads Judas [Child 23]RBW
The Arthurian Legend as found in English Ballads King Arthur and King Cornwall [Child 30]
The Gawain Legend and the Loathly Woman Marriage of Sir Gawain, The [Child 31]RBW
Feeling blue, or just wearing it?WoadRBW
Who is that Guy who just slew that dragon/giant/whatever?Guy of WarwickRBW
Incest and the circumstances under which it occurs: Do they explain ballads such as "Babylon," "Edward," "Lizie Wan," and "Sheathe and Knife"? Babylon, or, The Bonnie Banks o Fordie [Child 14]RBW
Women in disguise serving as soldiers: Some examples The Soldier MaidRBW
Who was Captain Wedderburn?Captain Wedderburn's Courtship [Child 46] RBW
The evolution of the Robin Hood legend
Please note that this article is now superseded by a separate publication.
A Gest of Robyn Hode [Child 117]RBW
The oldest Robin Hood ballad? Are you sure? Robin Hood and the Monk [Child 119] and Robin Hood and the Potter [Child 121]RBW
Did Robin Hood fire a last arrow at his death, or did he just borrow it from someone else? Robin Hood's Death [Child 120]RBW
Robin loves Marian. But which Robin and which Marian? Robin Hood and Maid Marian [Child 150]RBW
Robyn loves... Gandelyn? Are these Robin Hood characters? Robin and Gandelyn [Child 115]RBW
The back story of Adam Bell and Friends Adam Bell, Clim of the Clough, and William of Cloudesly [Child 116]RBW
Where did they lay the Laidly Worm? The Laidley Worm of Spindleston HeughsRBW
Who was John Audelay and how did he welcome Yule?Welcome YuleRBW
The Life of Geordie. And the other Geordie. And the other.... George of OxfordBS
The "Alba" or Dawn Song: Are there English examples? The Grey Cock, or, Saw You My Father [Child 248]RBW
The Middle English romances and the story of Floris and Blancheflour Blancheflour and Jellyflorice [Child 300]RBW
The Middle English romances and the tale of King Horn Hind Horn [Child 17]RBW
The evolution of the Orpheus/Orfeo legend King Orfeo [Child 19]RBW
Blood brotherhood in ballad and romanceBewick and Graham [Child 211]RBW
Which Duke Was It?Six Dukes Went a-FishingAS, PJS, RBW
Rosemary Lane, Ambletown, Falmouth Town, The North Country -- Who got whom pregnant, and where?Rosemary Lane [Laws K43]DGE, PJS, RBW
The Knight of the Burning Pestle: an early source of song fragmentsThree Merry MenRBW
The Balou/Baloo/Balowe Lullabies and their antecedants Lady Anne Bothwell's LamentBS
What the Man in the Moon does when he comes to earth.The Man in the Moon Came Down Too SoonRBW
The history of "Annie Laurie"Annie LaurieMS
The Mormon Church and its establishment in UtahBrigham Young RBW
Banjo Paterson and "Waltzing Matilda": Just what was his role in the making of the song?Waltzing MatildaMK, RBW
Who were the Newfoundlanders who found themselves in such trouble on the Canadian railway?The Roving Newfoundlanders (II)BS
Drimon: A dead cow or a lively symbol?DrimindownBS
The traditions and heroes of the United States Navy The CountersignsRBW
Sperm competition and human sexual behavior Nine Times a NightRBW
The age and translation of "Veni Emmanuel." Veni Emmanuel (O Come, O Come, Emmanuel)RBW
The origin and meaning of the name Mother Carey Mother Carey's ChickensRBW
The origin of the Paul Bunyan legends Paul BunyanRBW
The guano trade, nitrates, and the history of Ilo and Callao Tommy's Gone to HiloRBW
The Massacre of the Innocents and the Mystery Plays The Coventry CarolRBW
The sources of "The Carnal and the Crane" The Carnal and the Crane [Child 55]RBW
The relationship between "Fair Margaret and Sweet William" [Child 74] and "William and Margaret"William and Margaret (I)BS
Just what were those mermaids doing down there? The Mermaid [Child 289]RBW
Comparing the impossibilities asked in "Things Impossible" Things ImpossibleBS, RBW
Older wife, younger husband: Can it work, even in a song? A-Growing (He's Young But He's Daily A-Growing) [Laws O35]RBW
Why is the wren the king of birds?The Wren (The King)RBW
Just what were they eating when they wrote "Nottamum Town?" Nottamun TownPJS, RBW
Hey! What's in this drink? The Man that Waters the Workers' BeerRBW
Cinnamon, Nutmeg, and OwlsOf All the BirdsRBW
The Knight of the Burning Pestle and "Go From My Window"Go From My Window (I)BS
Away, Musgrave, Away! I Want Sir Gawain Instead! Little Musgrave and Lady Barnard [Child 81]RBW, BS
Who was that masked man, anyway?Glasgerion [Child 67]RBW
Don't you recognize the Duke of York? One of them.... The Noble Duke of YorkRBW
I Want Your Body -- on My Dissecting Table. The Black CookRBW
What happened on the Flanders Shore? The Flanders ShoreBS
Mummers' Plays and Courting Sweet MollBS
The Clerk's TaleThe Clerk's Twa Sons o Owsenford [Child 72]BS
The Afterlife of John Barleycorn and his kin Allan o Maut (I) (Why should not Allan Honoured Be)
Allan o Maut (II) (How Mault Deals With Every Man)
John Barleycorn (I)
John Barleycorn (II) (The Little Barleycorn)
John Barleycorn (III) (The Bloody Murder of Sir John Barleycorn)
Just what did Bishop Percy do with the Heir of Linne?The Heir of Linne (II)BS
How many magpies does it take to predict your future?One for Sorrow (Counting Magpies, Telling Fortunes)RBW
What's in a final E? Which Bickerstaff(e) wrote about which miller?The Miller of DeeBS, RBW
How many gates to the road to Babylon's babies?How Many Miles to Babylon?BS, RBW
The Evolution of a Folk Song: One More Kiss Before I GoOne More Kiss Before I GoBS
Who are you and where do you land when you jump Jim Crow?Jump Jim CrowRBW
Was there a London Bridge that fell down?London Bridge Is Falling DownRBW
It's the wrong words. It's the wrong tune. It's The Doxology.Old HundredRBW
Who is John Crow and why is he stealing clothes?Wheel and Turn MeBS
Do you need rum and Coca-Cola to learn calypso?Rum and Coca-ColaBS
Can't find a husband? Did you look in the forest? Or the zoo?The Forgotten Wife (The Black Bull of Norroway; The Red Bull of Norroway; The Brown Bear of Norway)BS
How a chapbook poem became an Irish folk song in the Tunney familySheila Nee IyerBS
Who was Charles R. Thatcher and why was he asking about licenses?Where's Your License?RBW
Harrigan and Hart: More than just a comedy teamBabies on Our BlockRBW
The March of Progress for Harrigan and HartThe Mulligan GuardRBW
So who really did love that Flat River Girl?Jack HaggertyRBW
How Edward Harrigan made that woodpile move.Hold the Woodpile DownRBW
The laurel grows... green? blue? red? Or is it a lilac?Green Grows the Laurel (Green Grow the Lilacs)DGE, BS
Sewing up the tale of Gammer Gurton's NeedleJolly Good Ale and Old (Back and Sides Go Bare)RBW
That bird must have one tough beak to take down that mountain!Land of OdinRBW