X:1 T:Careless Sally M:C| L:1/8 R:Country Dance B:Samuel, Ann & Peter Thompson - Compleat Collection of 200 Favourite Country Dances, vol. 5 (London, 1788, p. 45) Z:AK/Fiddler's Companion K:G G/A/B/c/ dB cedG|AB cB/A/ GFGD| G/A/B/c/ dB cedG|AB cB/A/ GF G2:| |:gg gb/g/ ee e2|aa aa/g/fd d2| geea fddg|ecAd BG G2:|]
CARELESS SALLY. English, Country Dance Tune (4/4 time). G Major. Standard tuning (fiddle). AABB. The melody first appeared in print in Samuel, Ann and Peter Thompson's Thompson's Compleat Collection of 200 Favourite Country Dances vol. 5 (London, 1788). It appears in the music manuscript collections of several amateur musicians on both sides of the Atlantic: Lawrence Leadley (Helperby, Yorkshire, mid-19th cent.), Edward Murphy (Newport, R.I., 1790), John Treat (Durham?, late 18th cent.) and Luther Kingsley (Mansfield, Conn., 1795). Dance figures for "Careless Sally" also appear in period manuscript collections in New England and New York, and in the publications A Select Collection of the Newest and Most Favorite Country Dances (Phinney, Ostego, N.Y., 1808) and A Treatise on Dancing (Saltator, Boston, Mass., 1807).
Cecil Sharp noted a version of the tune as a generic "Hornpipe" from the playing of James Higgins, then resident at Shepton Mallet Workhouse--the tune is often called "Shepton Mallet Hornpipe" today (c.f. playing of Somerset harmonica player Jim Small). "Careless Sally" was also entered into the 1840 music manuscript collection of multi-instrumentalist John Rook of Waverly, near Wigton, Cumbria, and Phillip Heath-Coleman  also finds other versions of the hornpipe (most noticeable in the 2nd strain) as "Goathland Square Eight (The)" and Henry Stuch's "Cuckoo's Nest".