Gol-Darned Wheel, The

DESCRIPTION: The cowboy boasts of his skill with horses. But a tenderfoot brings in a "gol-darned wheel" (bicycle). The cowboys get the singer to ride it, but it won't stop when he pulls on the handles. He crashes, but is glad that the "wheel" is even more damaged
AUTHOR: James B. Adams
EARLIEST DATE: 1898 (Recreation magazine; see NOTES)
KEYWORDS: humorous cowboy technology injury
REFERENCES (5 citations):
Ohrlin-HBT 16, "The Gol-Darned Wheel" (1 text, 1 tune)
ADDITIONAL: Powder River Jack and Kitty Lee's _Songs of the Range: Cowboy Wails of Cattle Trails_, Chart Music, 1937, pp. 40-41, "The Gol-darned Wheel" (1 text, 1 tune)
Jack H. Lee, _Cowboy Songs_, McKee Printing Co, 1934, p. 40.
Hal Cannon, editor, _Cowboy Poetry: A Gathering_, Giles M. Smith, 1985, pp. 10-11, "The Gol-Darned Wheel" (1 text)

Roud #4043
Glenn Ohrlin, "Gol Darn Wheel" (on Ohrlin01)
The Westerners (Massey Family) "Gol-Darn Wheel" (ARC 6-01-54(C 843-1) Chicago, IL, ╩Wednesday 14, 1934 (Curt Massey f, Larry Wellington, ac, Allen Massey v/g, Milt Mabie, sb. Tony Russell, p. 610.)
Marc Williams, "The Gol-Durned Wheel" (on BackSaddle)

NOTES [173 words]: This song is item dB38 in Laws's Appendix II.
Gary Stanton has done research on this song, and sent me the following: [- RBW]
This past spring [2014],in using the Library of Congress "Chronicling Historic America" site, I brought up the front page of the St. Johns' Herald (Apache County, Arizona Territory) 14 March 1896, [which printed] the stanzas to "The Cowboy and the Wheel." But the tag line was "Gol Darned Wheel." Just below the title was a bracketed source "[Recreation]" but no author. Well, Recreation was the name of a sporting magazine published by G. O. Shields, as the publication of the American Canoist's Association. In the February 1896 issue he published, "The Cowboy and the Wheel," by James B. Adams. James Barton Adams was a newspaper man in Denver and published Breezy Western Verse in 1899, but this poem was not included. What this information lacks is identifying who first put the tune to the verses but it must have been relatively soon after being composed. It is very well distributed across the West.
Last updated in version 3.5
File: Ohr016

Go to the Ballad Search form
Go to the Ballad Index Song List

Go to the Ballad Index Instructions
Go to the Ballad Index Bibliography or Discography

The Ballad Index Copyright 2018 by Robert B. Waltz and David G. Engle.