Old Smoky, Lyric Variant 01, Copy


“Old Smoky, Lyric Variant 01, Copy,” Appalachian State University Libraries Digital Collections, accessed June 22, 2024, https://omeka.library.appstate.edu/items/show/31765.

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Old Smoky, Lyric Variant 01, Copy


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.


Folk songs--United States
Unrequited love--Songs and music
Courtship--Songs and music
Mountains--Songs and music

Alternative Title

Old Smokey, On Top of Old Smokie, On Top of the Smokies All Covered with Snow, On Top of Old Smokies, Advice to Girls, Pretty Polly, Pretty Polly, I'm Going Away


W. L. Eury Appalachian Collection, Appalachian State University


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








Before copying this, let me dictate a correction

Old Smokey

Come sit down beside me
As long as you stay.
My horses aren’t hungry,
They won’t eat your hay.

It’s raining, it’s raining.
Won’t give me no light.
My horses can’t travel this dark road to
This dark road to night.

Your parents are against me,
And mine are the same.
Look upon your love book
And rub out my name.

On top of old Smokey
Where the hills are so high
Where the wild birds and the turtle doves
Can hear my sad cry.

On top of old Smokey
All covered with snow
I lose a true lover
By courting too slow.

Courting is a pleasure
And parting a grief.
And a false hearted young man
Is worse than a thief.

A thief will only rob you
And take all you have.
And a false hearted young man
Will bring you to your grave.

The grave will decay you
And turn you to dust.
There’s not a boy in a hundred a poor boy can trust.
A poor girl can trust.

They’ll hug you, they’ll kiss you
For to give your heart ease.
And as soon as your back is turned
They’ll court who they please.

On top of old Smokey
All covered with corn
To-day I am with you
To-morrow I’ll be gone.

I’m going back to Smokey.
I’m going back to die,
Where the pigeons and turtle doves
Can hear my sad cry.

Scholarly Classification

Brown, Folk Lyric - 253

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