“We're Coming, Arkansas (We're Coming, Idaho)”


The singer mentions reports of a fine fountain in Arkansas/Idaho. The family heads out toward this wonderful place of health and wealth: "We're coming, Arkansas/Idaho, We're coming, ---, Our four horse team will soon be seen, Way out in ---"

Supplemental text

We're Coming, Arkansas (We're Coming, Idaho)
  Partial text(s)

          *** A ***

Away, Idaho

From Anne Warner, Traditional American Folk Songs from the Anne &
Frank Warner Collection, #195 p. 442. From Deac Martin, apparently
of Cleveland, Ohio, 1952.

They say there is a land
Where the crystal waters flow
O'er beds of ore of purest gold
Way out in Idaho.

Away, Idaho,
We're coming, Idaho,
Our four-horse team will soon be seen
Way out in Idaho.

(2 additional stanzas)


The "Idaho" version was published in 1864 with Frank French listed as its author. Warner speculates that French rewrote an old Arkansas song to deal with the Idaho gold rush, though Cohen thinks French version original.

The only useful thing I can add is that Arkansas versions seem to prevail in Texas and Arkansas and vicinity, while Idaho is mentioned in the versions collected elsewhere. and the latter versions seem to be at least as common, though they come from areas where collection efforts have been spotty. The implication is that the Idaho variant was probably more widely known. Though that doesn't prove much. - RBW

Cross references

  • cf. "Wait For the Wagon" (tune)


  1. Randolph 343, "Eureka!" (3 texts, 1 tune)
  2. Randolph/Cohen, pp. 279-280, "Eureka!" (1 text, 1 tune -- Randolph's 343A)
  3. Warner 195, "Away, Idaho (We're Coming, Idaho)" (1 text, 1 tune)
  4. Larkin, pp. 86-90, "Way Out in Idyho" (1 short text with some unusual lyrics, 1 tune)
  5. Fife-Cowboy/West 113, "Way Out in Idaho" (1 text, 1 tune)
  6. Lomax-FSNA 156, "We're Coming, Arkansas" (1 text, 1 tune)
  7. Silber-FSWB, p. 47, "Way Out in Idaho" (1 text)
  8. ST R343 (Partial)
  9. Roud #4760
  10. BI, R343


Author: unknown
Earliest date: 1864
Keywords: emigration
Found in: US(MW,Ro,So)