“The Squid-Jiggin' Ground”


A song of the life of a squid fisherman. The fishermen are named, as are their homes and their peculiarities. The final stanzas warn of the messy work: "Now if ever you feel inclined to go squiddin', leave your white shirts and collars behind in the town"


Fowke writes, "The tale of what happens when fishermen head for 'The Squid-Jiggin' Ground' is the most widely known of all Newfoundland songs.... It was written by... Arthur R. Scammell when he was only fifteen....

"The squid is a species of cuttle-fish about ten inches long which is used as bait for larger fish. It has the peculiar characteristic of squirting forth an inky liquid when it is disturbed. Large schools of squid move in at certain parts of the Newfoundland coast during August, September, and October, and then the fishermen head out to pull them in with line and jigger." - RBW

The tune is one used by The Flanagan Brothers for their 1927 release of "Mick from Tralee" (on The Flanagan Brothers, "The Tunes We Like to Play on Paddy's Day," Viva Voce 007 (1996) from Columbia 33187-F June 1927). It is close to the tune of the chorus to "Paddy's Panacea" on Voice13. - BS

Cross references


  • Omar Blondahl, "Squid Jiggin' Ground" (on NFOBlondahl05)


  1. Fowke/Johnston, pp. 51-53, "The Squid-Jiggin' Ground" (1 text, 1 tune)
  2. Doyle2, pp. 66-67, "The Squid-Jiggin' Ground" (1 text, 1 tune)
  3. Doyle3, pp. 57-58, "The Squid-Jiggin' Ground" (1 text, 1 tune)
  4. Blondahl, pp. 32-33, "The Squid-Jiggin' Ground" (1 text, 1 tune)
  5. Silber-FSWB, p. 127, "The Squid-Jiggin' Ground" (1 text)
  7. Roud #4429
  8. BI, FJ051


Author: Arthur R. Scammell
Earliest date: c. 1929
Found in: Canada(Newf)