Lexington Murder, Lyric Variant 03


“Lexington Murder, Lyric Variant 03,” Appalachian State University Libraries Digital Collections, accessed May 24, 2024, https://omeka.library.appstate.edu/items/show/31666.

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Lexington Murder, Lyric Variant 03


This item is part of the I. G. Greer Folksong Collection which consists of more than 300 individual song titles and their variants as collected by Isaac Garfield Greer (1881-1967) from informants, primarily in Ashe, Wilkes and Watauga counties. The collection includes manuscripts, typescript transcriptions produced by Dr. Greer’s clerical staff, and handwritten musical notations. Songs range from traditional Child Ballads, traditional English and Scottish ballads as well as their American variants, to 19th century popular music to musical compositions of local origin.


Ballads, English
Murder--Songs and music
Conscience--Songs and music
Guilt--Songs and music
Courtship--Songs and music

Alternative Title

The Murdering Miller, The Oxford Girl, The Lexington Girl, The Knoxville Girl, The Wexford Girl, The Wittam Miller, The Berkshire Tragedy, Come All of You Who's Been in Love and Sympathize with Me, Last Saturday Night, Two Weeks Ago, Poor Nell, The Noel Girl, The Expert Girl, The Rexford Girl, The Cruel Miller, The Tragedy, The Lexington Miller, Johnny McDowell


W. L. Eury Appalachian Collection, Appalachian State University


Greer, I. G. (Isaac Garfield), 1881-1967








The Bloody Miller, or The Murdering Miller

One month ago since Christmas last
The most unhappy day,
The devil, he persuaded me
To take her life away.

I met her at her sister’s house
‘Twas eight o’ clock that night,
But little that creature knew
I owed her any spite.

I asked her if she’d walk with me
In the fields a little way,
That we might both so well agree
And appoint the wedding day.

As we went down a lonesome place
To the fields a little way,
I drew a stick out of the hedge
And struck her in the face.

As she came down to bended knees
“Oh, murderer she did cry,
For Heaven’s sake don’t murder me
For I am not fit to die.”

And then to wash her sins away
I took her by the hair,
And drug her to a river near
And left her body there.

Then to my mill, my mill I ran,
The miller was amazed,
He slowly fixed his eyes on me
And slowly he did gaze.

Oh, master, master, master, dear,
You look as pale as death
Have you been running all this night
That put you out of breath?

What means the blood upon your hands
Likewise upon your clothes?
I answered him immediately
By bleeding at the nose.

I snatched snatched the candle from his hand
And to my bed I run,
I lay there trembling all that night
For the murder I had done.

I lay there trembling all that night,
I could not take my rest,
I could but feel the flames of hell
Roll o’er my guilty breast.

The morning dawned, the sheriff came,
He took me to my jail,
And bound me there for six long months
And then in death to wail.

Scholarly Classification

Brown, Older Ballads - 65 Randolph, 150 Cox, 90

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