Orphan Girl, The (The Orphan Child)

DESCRIPTION: The orphan girl at the rich man's door cries, "No home." Ragged, hungry, and cold, she begs for help, but the rich man turns her away. In the night she freezes to death, "but her soul has gone to a home above where there's room and bread for the poor"
AUTHOR: unknown
EARLIEST DATE: 1894 (inscription in a book currently [2010] in the possession of Kirsten Wagmeister)
KEYWORDS: poverty orphan rejection death
FOUND IN: US(Ap,MW,Ro,SE,So) Canada(Newf)
REFERENCES (33 citations):
Guigné-ForgottenSongsOfTheNewfoundlandOutports, pp. 309-311, "The Prince and the Orphan (The Orphan Girl)" (1 text, 1 tune)
Belden-BalladsSongsCollectedByMissourFolkloreSociety, pp. 277-278, "The Orphan Girl" (1 text plus an excerpt from another, 1 tune)
Randolph 725, "The Orphan Child" (2 texts, 1 tune)
High-OldOldFolkSongs, p. 20, "A Poore Orphant Left A Lone"; p. 43, "The Girl That Frose to Death" (2 texts)
Abrahams/Riddle-ASingerAndHerSongs, pp. 96-98, "The Orphan Girl" (1 text, 1 tune)
Arnold-FolkSongsofAlabama, p. 17, "The Orphan Girl" (1 text, 1 tune)
Brown/Belden/Hudson-FrankCBrownCollectionNCFolklore2 148, "The Orphan Girl" (3 texts plus mention of 11 more)
Brown/Schinhan-FrankCBrownCollectionNCFolklore4 148, "The Orphan Girl" (3 excerpts, 3 tunes, plus observations on a fourth)
Chappell-FolkSongsOfRoanokeAndTheAlbermarle 117, "The Orphan Girl" (1 text)
Morris-FolksongsOfFlorida, #58, "The Orphan Girl" (1 text, 1 tune)
Brewster-BalladsAndSongsOfIndiana 63, "The Orphan Girl" (3 texts plus an excerpt and mention of 1 more, 1 tune)
List-SingingAboutIt-FolkSongsInSouthernIndiana, pp. 238-242, "The Orphan Girl" (2 texts, 2 tunes, plus a 1909 sheet music copy)
Stout-FolkloreFromIowa 43, p. 61, "The Orphan Girl" (1 text)
McNeil-SouthernFolkBalladsVol2, pp. 177-178, "Orphan Girl" (1 text, 1 tune)
Roberts-SangBranchSettlers, #23, "The Orphant Girl" (1 text, 1 tune)
Fuson-BalladsOfTheKentuckyHighlands, pp. 106-107, "The Little Orphan Girl" (1 text)
Cambiaire-EastTennesseeWestVirginiaMountainBallads, pp. 26-27, "The Orphan Girl" (1 text)
Henry-SongsSungInTheSouthernAppalachians, pp. 124-125, "The Orphan Girl" (1 text)
Wolfe/Boswell-FolkSongsOfMiddleTennessee 69, pp. 113-114, "The Orphan Girl" (1 text, 1 tune)
Burton/Manning-EastTennesseeStateCollectionVol1, p. 6, "The Orphan Girl"; pp. 18-19, "No Home" (1 text, 1 tune)
Burton/Manning-EastTennesseeStateCollectionVol2, pp. 89-90, "The Orphan Child" (1 text, 1 tune)
Scarborough-ASongCatcherInSouthernMountains, pp. 364-366, "The Little Orphan Girl" (2 texts; 2 tunes on p. 454)
Owens-TexasFolkSongs-1ed, pp. 281-283, "The Orphan Girl" (1 text, 1 tune)
Owens-TexasFolkSongs-2ed, p. 168, "The Orphan Girl" (1 text, 1 tune)
Hubbard-BalladsAndSongsFromUtah, #99, "The Orphan Girl" (1 text)
Sandburg-TheAmericanSongbag, pp. 316-319, "Mag's Song" (2 text plus a fragment, 1 tune)
Cox-FolkSongsSouth 153, "The Orphan Girl" (1 text)
Gainer-FolkSongsFromTheWestVirginiaHills, pp. 118-119, "The Orphan Girl" (1 text, 1 tune)
Boette-SingaHipsyDoodle, p. 61, "The Orphan Girl" (1 text, 1 tune)
Lomax/Lomax-OurSingingCountry, pp. 276-277, "The Coal Miner's Child" (1 text, 1 tune)
Darling-NewAmericanSongster, p. 368, "The Coal Miner's Child" (1 text)
cf. Gardner/Chickering-BalladsAndSongsOfSouthernMichigan, p. 481, "The Orphan Girl" (source notes only)
ADDITIONAL: _Sing Out_ magazine, Volume 25, #5 (1977), pp, 26-27, "The Orphan Girl" (1 text, 1 tune, the Buell Kazee version)

ST R725 (Partial)
Roud #457 and 4193
Fiddlin' John Carson, "The Orphan Child" (OKeh 7006, 1924)
Buell Kazee, "The Orphan Girl" (Brunswick 211, 1928; Supertone S-2045, 1930; on KMM)
Lester McFarland & Robert Gardner, "The Orphan Girl" (Vocalion 5369, 1929)
Len Nash & his Country Boys, "The Orphan Girl" (Brunswick 387, 1929)
Riley Puckett, "The Orphan Girl" (Columbia 15050-D, 1926; rec. 1925)
Ernest Stoneman, "The Orphan Girl" (OKeh 45044, 1926) (Edison 52077/Edison [BA CYL] 5367, 1927)

cf. "Sacker Shean's Little Girl" (theme)
NOTES [168 words]: Stephen Foster wrote a piece, "No Home, No Home" (1862), but this song is much more detailed and does not resemble Foster's.
The Darling text, "The Coal Miner's Child," has been localized to mining conditions without in any way distancing it from the other versions of this song. This adapted version, however, bears a special resemblance to "The Miner's Doom" [Laws Q36]. It appears, based on the notes in Lomax/Lomax-OurSingingCountry, that this adaption was created by Aunt Molly Jacskon, but the core of the song is still recognizable (as Jackson admitted).
Roud splits this into two parts, #457, recognized by the "No Home" lyric, and #4193. I think he's probably right, but it's very hard to separate some of the versions, so they are lumped until I can do a full investigation.
List-SingingAboutIt-FolkSongsInSouthernIndiana mentions sources crediting the tune to C. G. Smith and to T. B. Mosley, but I would guess the former is an arrangement and the latter is likely also a shape note arrangement. - RBW
Last updated in version 5.1
File: R725

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