Parallel Anthology Track 23

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Icon Unknown Status.jpg Track 23: The Carter Family - Engine One Forty Three   Victor 40088-B; Recorded in Camden, New Jersey, 15.2.1929

Anthology Track 23 label.jpg

Record label assigns authorship to "A P Carter" as does Harry Smith's Anthology booklet and However, does not assign authorship.

According to wikipedia, A P Carter died in 1960, which would put this composition in copyright until 1st January 2031.

The Roud Folksong Index classifies this song as a version of Roud 255. A Roud number search returns several versions which predate the Carters' version, although all by less than 10 years.

According to the Old Weird America blog:

Legend says that when A.P. Carter first met Sara, she was singing with the autoharp “Engine 143″. He was coming around her home selling fruits and she was just 16 years old then. Soon A.P Carter would marry her and make her sing the songs from her family’s tradition and the ones he collected around the hills of Virginia.

Harry Smith's Anthology booklet states that "The ballad was probably composed by a worker in the round house at Hinton, West Virginia".

The above makes the claim to authorship on the record label doubtful.

Parallel anthology main index page

Alternative Versions

Brave Engineer label.jpg
The Brave Engineer by Roy Harvey recorded in 1926 (according to RFSI): Spotify
No claim to authorship or arrangement on record label.