Ship That Never Returned, The [Laws D27]

DESCRIPTION: A ship is preparing to sail. The lives of several of the passengers, their reasons for leaving, and their farewells to family and/or sweethearts are briefly described. But the ship disappears at sea, apparently with all hands
AUTHOR: Henry Clay Work
EARLIEST DATE: 1865 (sheet music published by S. Brainard's Sons)
KEYWORDS: sea farewell wreck disaster
FOUND IN: US(Ap,MW,NE,Ro,SE,So)
REFERENCES (17 citations):
Laws D27,"The Ship that Never Returned"
WorkSongs, pp. 91-94, "The Ship that Never Return'd" (1 text, 1 tune, a copy of the original sheet music)
Randolph 690, "The Ship that Never Returned" (2 texts)
High, p. 45, "The Ship that Never Returned" (1 text)
BrownII 25, "The Ship That Never Returned" (1 text plus mention of 10 more as well as a pair of offshoots)
BrownSchinhanIV 215, "The SHip That Never Returned" (1 excerpt, 1 tune)
Peters, p. 106, "The Ship That Never Returned" (1 text, 1 tune)
Sandburg, pp. 146-147, "The Ship That Never Returned" (1 text, 1 tune)
Hubbard, #111, "The Ship That Never Returned" (1 text)
Arnett, pp. 92-93, "The Ship That Never Returned" (1 text, 1 tune)
Spaeth-WeepMore, p. 138, "The Ship that Never Returned" (1 text, 1 tune)
Gilbert, pp. 142-143, "The Ship That Never Returned" (1 text)
Darling-NAS, pp. 186-187, "The Ship That Never Returned" (1 text)
Silber-FSWB, p. 268, "The Ship That Never Returned" (1 text)
Cohen-LSRail, pp. 197-226, "The Wreck of the Old 97" (6 texts plus excerpts, 1 tune, plus a sheet music cover and sundry excerpts from related songs including a text of "The Ship That Never Returned)
cf. Gardner/Chickering, p. 482, "The Ship That Never Returned" (source notes only)
DT 618, NVRETURN* NVRETUR2*

Roud #775
RECORDINGS:
Omar Blondahl, "The Ship That Never Returned" (on NFOBlondahl03)
Vernon Dalhart, "The Ship That Never Returned" (Gennett 3311, 1926)
Connie Foley, "The Ship That Never Returned" (Copley 9-179-B, n.d.
Bradley Kincaid, "The Ship That Never Returned" (Bluebird 5569, 1934)
Asa Martin, "The Ship That Never Returned" (Oriole 8163/Conqueror 8068 [as Martin & Roberts], 1932)
Roe Bros. & Morrell, "The Ship That Never Returned" (Columbia 15156-D, 1927)
Charles Lewis Stine, "The Ship That Never Returned" (Columbia 15027-D, 1925)

BROADSIDES:
Bodleian, Johnson Ballads 1518, "The Ship That Never Returned," T. Brooks (Bristol), n.d.
LOCSheet, sm1885 21919, "The Ship That Never Returned," S. Brainard's. Sons (Cleveland), 1885 (tune)

CROSS-REFERENCES:
cf. "The Train that Never Returned" (tune & meter)
cf. "The Wreck of Old 97" (tune & meter)
cf. "The Rarden Wreck of 1893" (tune & metre)
cf. "The Flying Colonel" (tune)
cf. "M.T.A." (tune)
cf. "Lovers Parted" (tune, lyrics)
SAME TUNE:
The Train That Never Returned (File: R694)
The Wreck of Old 97 [Laws G2] (File: LG02)
The Rarden Wreck of 1893 (File: DarNS215)
The Flying Colonel (File: EM404)
Lovers Parted (File: BrII215A)
Vernon Dalhart, "The Airship That Never Returned" (Columbia 15162-D, 1927)
Ernest Stoneman, "The Face That Never Returned" (OKeh, unissued, 1924) (OKeh 40288, 1925) [probably this tune, though we haven't been able to check]
NOTES: This may be the best-selling tune of all time in terms of fraction of the population which experienced it; "The Ship that Never Returned" was a hit in sheet music, and "The Wreck of Old 97" and "M.T.A." (which also uses the tune) were hits on record. Sadly, Work made only a little money off the piece. - RBW
Blondahl03 has no liner notes confirming that this song was collected in Newfoundland. Barring another report for Newfoundland I do not assume it has been found there. There is no entry for "The Ship That Never Returned" in Newfoundland Songs and Ballads in Print 1842-1974 A Title and First-Line Index by Paul Mercer. - BS
Last updated in version 4.2
File: LD27

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