Oh, Once I Had a Fortune

DESCRIPTION: The singer describes how drink has cost him money and sweetheart: "Oh, once I had a fortune, All locked up in a trunk. I lost it all in a gambling hall One night when I got drunk. I'll never get drunk any more...."
AUTHOR: unknown
EARLIEST DATE: 1847 (Journal of William Histed of the Cortes)
KEYWORDS: drink poverty gambling travel
FOUND IN: US(So) Australia
REFERENCES (5 citations):
Randolph 316, "Oh, Once I Had a Fortune" (1 text, 1 tune)
Huntington-SongsTheWhalemenSang, pp. 203-205, "I Had a Handsome Fortune" (1 text)
Brown/Belden/Hudson-FrankCBrownCollectionNCFolklore3 36, "I'll Never Get Drunk Any More" (4 texts, all mixed, but the "D" text is mostly this piece, and "C" probably originated with this also)
Wolf-AmericanSongSheets, #1010, p. 69, "I'll Never Get Drunk Again" (1 reference)
Scott-ACollectorsNotebook-31TraditionalSongs, p. 28, "I Got Drunk Again" (1 text, tune referenced)

Roud #7792, 1993, 22611
RECORDINGS:
Ernest V. Stoneman and the Dixie Mountaineers, "Once I Had a Fortune" (Edison 51935, 1927) (CYL: Edison [BA] 5357, 1927); Ernest V. Stoneman and His Blue Ridge Cornshuckers, "One I Had a Fortune" (Victor, unissued, 1928)
NOTES [53 words]: The Roud Index seems to split this into all sorts of separate numbers. It's easy to see why it would be hard to remember all the versions -- after all, there are many, many songs about drinking, gambling, and then promising to straighten out! But the reference to a "handsome fortune" seems pretty characteristic. - RBW
Last updated in version 4.5
File: R316

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