DESCRIPTION: The singer recalls leaving (Ballymoney), and admits to being "as wretched can be" in the new land. He misses buttermilk, the old mud house, peat fires, and of course Norah McShane. Even with no money, it was a better life than this
AUTHOR: Eliza Cook (?)
EARLIEST DATE: 1841 (broadside, LOCSheet sm1841 380630); supposedly written 1838
KEYWORDS: emigration homesickness separation
FOUND IN: Ireland US(MW)
REFERENCES (4 citations):
SHenry H157, p. 207, "Norah McShane" (1 text, 1 tune)
O'Conor, pp. 50-51, "Nora McShane" (1 text)
Dean, p. 105, "Nora McShane" (1 text)
WolfAmericanSongSheets, #1620, p. 110, "Norah M'Shane" (1 reference)
Bodleian, Harding B 11(2717), "Norah Mc.Sheen" or "I Am Leaving Ballimoney," J. Harkness (Preston), 1840-1866; also 2806 c.15(9/10)[some illegible words], "Norah MacShane"; Harding B 11(3881), 2806 b.11(10), Firth c.26(16), Harding B 11(56), Harding B 11(1814), "Norah M'Shane"
LOCSheet, sm1841 380630, "Norah McShane," C. E. Horn (New York), 1841; also sm1850 650070, sm1850 471280, "Norah McShane" (tune)
cf. "Scarborough Settler's Lament" (theme) and references there
cf. "Lake Chemo" (parody)
NOTES: The LOCSheet broadsides note "poetry by [Miss] Eliza Cook" and music attributed either to W. J. Wetmore or Charles Horn Junr. - BS
Jon W. Finson, The Voices That Are Gone: Themes in Nineteenth-Century American Popular Song, Oxford University Press, 1994, p. 285, also attributes the song to Eliza Cook and Charles Horn, but does not state a source.
For background on Eliza Cook, see the notes to "Grandmother's Chair." - RBW
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