“Fanny's Harbour Bawn”


The singer spies his love in the arms of another and loses the ensuing fight. He claims that "baymen," like his opponent, look harmless enough but they are good fighters. The singer refrains from courting and encourages others to do the same.


Doyle claims that the song is an account of a real fight that happened "over half a century ago" (from 1940) in Labrador. He also explains that a "bawn" is a beach for drying fish and that the girl was said to have been from Conception Bay where, apparently, the singer is also from (Carbonear). The singer's cursing of the northern "bayman" from Bonavista is perhaps typical of the social status conflicts on the island. - SH

Attribution to Mark Walker is from _Taking Apart "Tickle Cove Pond"_ in Canadian Journal for Traditional Music, vol. 29, 2002 by Philip Hiscock, p. 35. The other songs attributed to Walker in that article are "The Antis of Plate Cove," "Lovely Kitty/Katie-Oh," "The Race on Tickle Cove Pond," "Labrador Squalls," "Down By Jim Long's Stage," "The Girls from Sweet Bay," "Nellie Neil, Me Little Kettie," "Tickle Cove Pond II," "Gains I Owe in Many Lands" and "a single-stanza fragment about a local merchant hiring a Tickle Cove crew to go fishing in the north of Newfoundland."

[Hiscock repeats the attribution] in _Ten things to consider about "The Star of Logy Bay"_ in Canadian Folk Music Bulletin, Summer 2003, Vol 37.2, p.7. - BS


  1. Doyle2, pp. 34-35, "Fanny's Harbour Bawn" (1 text, 1 tune)
  2. Peacock, pp. 185-188, "Fanny's Harbour Bawn" (1 texts, 3 tunes)
  3. Lehr/Best 36, "Fanny's Harbour Bawn" (1 text, 1 tune)
  4. Blondahl, pp. 112-113, "Fanny's Harbour Bawn" (1 text, 1 tune)
  5. Roud #4418
  6. BI, Doy34


Author: Mark Walker (see notes)
Earliest date: 1940
Keywords: love courting fight
Found in: Canada(Newf)