“Just from Dawson (Deadwood on the Hills)”


"A Dawson City miner lay dying in the ice." The miner tells his comrade to send him back to "Deadwood in the hills" (of South Dakota), where there is as much gold (i.e. not much) and it is warmer. He dies and freezes solid; they send his body home


As usual, the Lomax version of this presents problems. They actually attribute it (to F. A. and Edith H. Brewer), but there is no information about these two. And the Lomaxes did not scruple to rewrite pieces in this book. So we can hardly know the relationship between the Lomax text (set in Dawson and with the miner coming from Deadwood) and the Dean text (set in the Klondike and with the miner wishing to go to Gibbons on the Platte). There seem to be no other traditional texts. All we can say with certainty is that Dean's text is older. Plus it mentions a less-famous place. (Gibbon, Nebraska is indeed near the Platte, about halfway between Kearney and Grand Isle, but its population is numbered in the low thousands even today; Deadwood, though only slightly more populous, was famous as the site of an 1870s gold rush). - RBW

Historical references

  • 1898 - Yukon gold rush

Cross references

  • cf. "The Cremation of Sam McGee" (theme)
  • cf. "Bingen on the Rhine" (tune)


  1. Dean, pp. 132-133, "The Klondike Miner" (1 text)
  2. Lomax-ABFS, pp. 440-441, "Just from Dawson" (1 text)
  3. Roud #9585
  4. BI, LxA440


Author: unknown
Earliest date: 1922 (Dean)
Found in: US(MW)