Dearest Mae

DESCRIPTION: The singer describes his life as a slave and his love for Mae. When master gives him a holiday, he visits Mae and they court happily; he then returns home. Master dies; the singer is sold down the river; Mae dies of grief
AUTHOR: unknown
EARLIEST DATE: 1850 (The Ethiopian Glee Book)
KEYWORDS: slave death separation love courting
FOUND IN: US(SE)
REFERENCES (2 citations):
BrownIII 405, "Dearest Mae" (1 text plus an excerpt -- a verse which has floated in from "Massa Had a Yellow Gal" -- and mention of 2 more)
BrownSchinhanV 405, "Dearest Mae" (1 tune plus a text excerpt)

Roud #9089
SAME TUNE:
Charming Emma Show ("Way down in Alabama") (WolfAmericanSongSheets, p. 20)
The Dying Soldier ("Oh! bury me not 'neath foreign skies," by E. Walter Lowe) (WolfAmericanSongSheets, p. 36)
The Menagerie ("Now folks, come listen to me, and as you stand around") (WolfAmericanSongSheets p. 96)
The Baltimore Girls ("Oh the Girls of dear old Baltimore") (WolfAmericanSongSheets, p. 186)
Dix's Manifesto ("Once on a time in Baltimore") (WolfAmericanSongSheets, p. 188)
Fort Sumpter. A Southern Song ("Come now and gather round me") (WolfAmericanSongSheets, p. 189)
Jackson's Requiem ("That noted burglar Ellsworth") (WolfAmericanSongSheets, p.190)
Linger Yet ("The golden glories of the sun, as in the west he falls") (Henry Randall Waite, _Carmina Collegensia: A Complete Collection of the Songs of the American Colleges_ first edition 1868, expanded edition, Oliver Ditson, 1876, p. 66)
Song of the Graduate ("It's I that is a bachelor, though married to the Muse") (Henry Randall Waite, _Carmina Collegensia: A Complete Collection of the Songs of the American Colleges_ first edition 1868, expanded edition, Oliver Ditson, 1876, p. 47)
Cornell ("The soldier loves his en'ral's fame, The willow loves the stream") (by G. R. Birge, [class of 18]72) (Henry Randall Waite, _Carmina Collegensia: A Complete Collection of the Songs of the American Colleges_ first edition 1868, expanded edition, Oliver Ditson, 1876, p. 109)
NOTES: The notes in Brown list versions attributed to "A. F. Winnemore" and "Francis Lynch/L. V. H. Crosby." Harry Dichter and Elliott Shapiro, Early American Sheet Music: Its Lure and Its Lore, 1768-1889, R. R. Bowker, 1941, p 142, list a piece called "Dearest Mae" with words by Francis Lynch and music by James Power published by A. Fiot of Philadelphia in 1847.
It's worth noting that this is *not* a "happy slave" piece; the singer works hard, but is cruelly betrayed on his master's death, and Mae dies. In that sense, it rather resembled "Darling Nellie Gray" -- though seemingly without provoking the reactions the latter produced. - RBW
Last updated in version 4.1
File: Br3405

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