“The Little Brown Jug”


The singer praises drink and the little brown jug it comes in: "Ha, ha, ha, you and me, 'Little brown jug' don't I love thee." Drink has turned his friends into enemies, left him poor and sick, and ruined his prospects -- but still he wants another drop

Supplemental text

Little Brown Jug, The
  Complete text(s)

          *** A ***

Little Brown Jug

From sheet music published 1869 by J. E. Winner.
Title page inscribed

1. My wife and I lived all alone,
In a little log hut we called our own;
She loved gin, and I loved rum,
I tell you what, we'd lots of fun.

Ha, ha, ha, you and me,
"Little brown jug" don't I love thee;
Ha, ha, ha, you and me,
"Little brown jug" don't I love thee.

2. 'Tis you who makes my friends my foes,
   'Tis you who makes me wear old clothes;
   Here you are, so near my nose,
   So tip her up, and down she goes.

3.  When I go toiling to my farm
     I take little "Brown Jug" under my arm;
   I place it under a shady tree,
     Little "Brown Jug," 'tis you and me. -- Cho.

4. If all the folks in Adam's race,
     Were gathered together in one place;
   Then I'd prepare to shed a tear,
     Before I'd part from you, my dear. -- Cho.

5. If I'd a cow that gave such milk,
     I'd clothe her in the finest silk;
   I'd feed her on the choicest hay,
     And milk her forty times a day. -- Cho.

6. The rose is read, my nose is, too,
     The violet's blue, and so are you;
   And yet I guess before I stop,
     We'd better take another drop. -- Cho.


Joseph Winner (the brother of Septimus Winner, a.k.a. "Alice Hawthorne") published some twenty pieces in his career under the title Eastburn, but only this one had any commercial success. The title may have come from another song of the same name, but that piece (by George Cooper and W. F. Wellman, Jr.; copyright 1868) fell into instant obscurity. - RBW

Same tune

  • Old Man's Lament (II) (File: Logs050)

Cross references


  • [Gene] Austin & [George] Reneau, "Little Brown Jug" (CYL: Edison [BA] 4973, prob. 1924)
  • The Blue Ridge Duo [possibly a pseudonym for George Reneau?] "Little Brown Jug" (Edison 51422, 1924)
  • Uncle Tom Collins, "Little Brown Jug" (OKeh 45132, 1927)
  • Vernon Dalhart, "Little Brown Jug" (Perfect 12421, 1928)
  • Chubby Parker, "Little Brown Jug" (Gennett 6120/Silvertone 5013/Silvertone 25013, 1927; Supertone 9191, 1928) (Conqueror 7893, 1931)
  • Riley Puckett (w. Clayton McMichen), "Little Brown Jug" (Columbia 15232-D, 1928; rec. 1927)
  • George Reneau, "Little Brown Jug" (Vocalion 14812, 1924)
  • Ernest Thompson, "Little Brown Jug" (Columbia 147-D, 1924)
  • Welby Toomey, "Little Brown Jug" (Gennett 6025/Champion 15198, 1927; rec. 1926)
  • Henry Whitter, "Little Brown Jug" (OKeh 40063, 1924)


  1. RJackson-19CPop, pp. 115-118, "Little Brown Jug" (1 text, 1 tune)
  2. Belden, p. 261, "Little Brown Jug" (1 text plus an excerpt from another)
  3. Randolph 408, "The Little Brown Jug" (1 text, 1 tune, plus a fragment which may or may not go here)
  4. BrownIII 33, "Little Brown Jug" (1 text plus 6 excerpts)
  5. Lomax-ABFS, pp. 176-177, "Little Brown Jug" (1 text, 1 tune, probably composite, since it includes all the original verses plus some floaters)
  6. Spaeth-ReadWeep, pp. 52-53, "The Little Brown Jug" (1 text, 1 tune)
  7. Gilbert, pp. 64-65, "Little Brown Jug" (1 text)
  8. Pankake-PHCFSB, p. 269, "Little Brown Jug" (1 text)
  9. Silber-FSWB, p. 236, "Little Brown Jug" (1 text)
  10. Fuld-WFM, pp. 334-335, "Little Brown Jug"
  12. ST RJ19115 (Full)
  13. Roud #725
  14. BI, RJ19115


Author: Eastburn (Joseph Eastburn Winner)
Earliest date: 1869
Keywords: drink poverty nonballad
Found in: US(MW,SE,So) Britain(England)