Where Is Old Elijah? (The Hebrew Children, The Promised Land)
DESCRIPTION: "Where oh where is old Elijah? (x3) 'Way over in the Promised Land. He went up in a fiery chariot (x3) 'Way over in the promised land. By and by we will go and see him...." Unrelated verses on Biblical themes, e.g. "Where are the Hebrew children"
AUTHOR: Peter Cartwright?
EARLIEST DATE: 1832 (Sacred Harp)
KEYWORDS: Bible religious nonballad
FOUND IN: US(Ap,MW,SE,So) West Indies(Tobago)
REFERENCES (9 citations):
Dett, p. 73, "Wonder Where is Good Ole Daniel" (1 text, 1 tune; p. 107 in the 1901 edition)
BrownIII 646, "Way Over in the Promised Land" (1 text)
Belden, pp. 457-459, "The Promised Land" (2 texts, 1 tune, the second text purporting to be a translation into an Indian language though neither Belden nor I can say which one)
Owens-2ed, p. 163, "The Hebrew Children" (1 text, 1 tune)
Fuson, pp. 205-206, "Safe at Home in the Promised Land" (1 text)
Elder-Charlotteville, p. 49, "Saved in the Promised Land" (1 text, 1 tune)
Sandburg, pp. 92-93, "Where O Where Is Old Elijah?" (1 text, 1 tune)
Coleman/Bregman, pp. 84-85, "'Way Over in the Promised Land" (1 text, 1 tune)
ADDITIONAL: Fred W. Allsopp, Folklore of Romantic Arkansas, Volume II (1931), p. 160, "(Where, Oh, where is Elijah?" (1 short text)
ST San092 (Partial)
cf. "The Paw-Paw Patch" (tune & meter)
Where O Where ("Where, o where, are the verdant freshmen (x3), Safe in the sophomore class") (_Songs that Never Grow Old_, 1913, p. 78) (Henry Randall Waite, _Carmina Collegensia: A Complete Collection of the Songs of the American Colleges_ first edition 1868, expanded edition, Oliver Ditson, 1876, p. 59)
NOTES: Elijah's transportation to heaven in a fiery chariot is described in 2 Kings 2:11.
Absalom's rebellion against his father David occupies 2 Samuel 15-18 (Absalom's death occurs in 18:9-18); the extended story of David's sin and its consequences, including the rebellion, occupies 2 Samuel 11-19.
According to the Sacred Harp, the tune is by Peter Cartwright (1785-1872), and is known as "Hebrew Children." No author is listed for the words, however, and the versions show strong variations. Fred W. Allsopp, in Folklore of Romantic Arkansas, Volume II, p. 160, says that it has been sung by "professional minstels." - RBW
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