Mudcat Café message #743542 The Mudcat Café TM
Thread #48893   Message #743542
Posted By: Dicho (Frank Staplin)
06-Jul-02 - 09:34 PM
Thread Name: Origin: Limber Jim
Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Limber Jim: History & Lyrics
Verses of similar type may be found in "Bile Them Cabbage Down." These old party songs and minstrel dance tunes are so intertwined that putting them in order with regard to time is almost impossible.
Very few people were interested in the songs and dances of the common people; examples from the 19th century like the one taken down by Lafcadio Hearn are uncommon. We have the composed pieces- minstrel songs, popular songs, hymns.
Folk song collectors really didn't appear until after 1900; by that time many songs had already gone through changes. Interests of these early collectors rarely extended to play party and rural dance songs; Child and other early ballads with roots in Europe were the prizes in their collections. By the time collections of the "lower" order of song appeared, origins were forgotten and verses were well-scrambled. The origin of Buckeye Jim-Shiloh-Liza Jane etc. could be in a combination of minstrel and old fiddle tunes.
There is still information to be found in old letters, diaries and ephemera residing in archives, trunks and attics, but it is difficult to come by.

It will be interesting to see further additions to this thread.