June 21, 2014

My Little Brown Jug

I have a little brown Kentucky jug.
 I just love this little jug. I don't normally collect "rustic" things...but this one has a family provenance. You know that I love things that are part of our family story. It might not be a beauty, but it is part of our Kentucky history.

I looked for markings…but found none.

This little brown jug is a little piece of my hubby’s family history. The story goes like this…
It seems that once upon a time my father-in-law bought some property in Yosemite, Kentucky that had an old, small building that once housed an apothecary back in the day when Yosemite was a bustling little logging town. (Today Yosemite is small compared to its "hay day." Yes, the spot in the road Yosemite used to be a busy little place. We once found the old railway turnaround on hubby’s family farm. Yes...Yosemite once had railway service.) 
But, back to the old building on the family property…
When my in-laws purchased the land and the building that went with it…they found lots of discarded/abandoned broken things. But this little jug was in one piece, so hubby’s parents kept it. I would have too!
Based on old movies and such I figured a jug like this was for moonshine. I guess an apothecary mixed up lots of concoctions! 
The next though in my rambling brain was about a little tune….Little Brown Jug. I started humming it and my hubby then said…”you know it is a drinking song don’t you.” Apparently not…so I looked up the song thanks to Google, and found the lyrics on Wikipedia. Just in case you do not know all of the lyrics…take a look below.
Bet you did not think I could find something educational about a little brown jug. :-) I would love to know what this little brown jug once had it in. If I could do a CSI chemical analysis maybe I would know. J

The next item in my show and tell story is this small table. I picked it up at an antique mall on a girl’s day out near lake Cumberland.  It was an impulse purchase, but it has been a workhorse of a table for me…as I have used it next to my chair to hold my many teaching items…laptop, markers, jump drives, books, handouts, power cord, paper clips, etc. You get the idea.

 The copper bucket is another find. I really like it…but not sure how to use it around my house, since I do not have very many rustic things…except for my little brown jug, and an old crock.

I created this little vignette by dressing up my copper bucket.
Thanks for stopping by to visit. 
Please come again when you have time.

Now for the educational part of the post…about the Little Brown Jug song.

"Little Brown Jug" is a song written in 1869 by Joseph Winner, originally published credited to "Eastburn" (Winner's middle name).
It was originally a drinking song. It remained well known as a folk song into the early 20th century. Like many songs which make reference to alcoholic beverages, it enjoyed new popularity during the Prohibition era. In 1939, bandleader Glenn Miller recorded and broadcast his swing instrumental arrangement of the tune with great success, and the number became one of the best known orchestrations of the American Big Bandera.[1] His version did not have the lyrics.

1939 Glenn Miller Recording
1939 Glenn Miller recording on RCA Bluebird, B-10286-A.
1953 sheet music cover from the film The Glenn Miller Story, Lew Music, New York.

In 1939, Glenn Miller and His Orchestra released a hit version of the song on RCA Bluebird, as an A side 78 single, B-10286-A, in a new arrangement by Bill Finegan backed with "Pavanne". The recording was an early chart hit for Glenn Miller. The song was performed in Glenn Miller's Carnegie Hall concert that year and was featured in the 1953 film biography The Glenn Miller Story. The song became a staple of the Glenn Miller Orchestra repertoire and a classic of the Big Band era.
The song was featured in and was central to the plot of the 1953 Universal Pictures film biography The Glenn Miller Story starring James Stewart and June Allyson.
It was also sung by Carl "Alfalfa" Switzer and Harold "Slim" Switzer in an Our Gang (Little Rascals) short.
The song's lyrics are about a man and his wife and their hard life due to alcoholism; however, the tone and tune are bright and cheerful. 

Original lyrics
Me and my wife live all alone
In a little log hut we call our own;
She loves gin and I love rum,
And don't we have a lot 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!
When I go toiling on the farm
I take the little jug under my arm;
Place it under a shady tree,
Little brown jug, 'tis you and me.
’Tis you that makes me friends and foes,
’Tis you that makes me wear old clothes;
But, seeing you're so near my nose,
Tip her up and down she goes.
If all the folks in Adam's race
Were gathered together in one place,
I'd let them go without a tear
Before I'd part from you, my dear.
If I'd a cow that gave such milk,
I'd dress her in the finest silk;
Feed her up on oats and hay,
And milk her twenty times a day.
I bought a cow from Farmer Jones,
And she was nothing but skin and bones;
I fed her up as fine as silk,
She jumped the fence and strained her milk.
And when I die don't bury me at all,
Just pickle my bones in alcohol;
Put a bottle o' booze at my head and feet
And then I know that I will keep.
The rose is red, 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.

Alternate Chidren’s lyrics:
I got a dog, he's a hound,
Always diggin' in the ground.
Every time I hide my jug,
That's just where that ole hound dug.
Me, my wife, and a bobtailed dog,
crossed a creek on a hollow log,
the log, it broke, and we fell in,
and little brown jug got filled again. 
1.     Jump up^ Glenn Miller and Bill Finegan were the arrangers of the song based on the ASCAP database and the EMI Feist publishing catalogue.
The chorus lyrics are used in a modified form in the song "The Coral Room" by Kate Bush on the album "Aerial" referring to a song her mother sang in the kitchen.
"Little brown jug, don't I love thee" "Ho ho ho, hee, hee, hee."''

  1. Yosemite is an unincorporated community in western Casey County, Kentucky, United States. Their Post Office was closed in September 2011. It was established in the 1870s for logging facilities owned by Cincinnati businessman Eugene Zimmerman. Wikipedia

  2. Thanks for Visiting.

My Kentucky Living
My Kentucky Living

Hello, I'm Sheila and my house is a giant art project! I enjoy creating an environment where my family can feel safe, secure, and loved. We are empty nesters learning to slow down and enjoy life.

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