Little Grave in Georgia

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LITTLE GRAVE IN GEORGIA. Old-Time, Song & Waltz. Recorded by North Georgia fiddler Earl Johnson [1] (1884-1965). The song is based on the Mary Phagan murder in Atlanta that riveted the South in 1913. A nothern Jewish businessman, Leo Frank [2], was convicted of the murder of the 13 year old girl and sentenced to prison, however, he was broken out of jail, kidnapped an lynched within a year.

Mary Phagan

Several songs were written about the sensation event, including Fiddlin' John Carson's and Rosa Lee Carson's "Little Mary Phagan" and Fiddlin' John Carson's "The Grave of Little Mary Phagan" (1925). Johnson's song is a version of the latter-named John Carson song. Carson and Johnson, both from Atlanta, were friends, neighbors and sometime playing partners.

Earl Johnson & His Dixie Clodhoppers



The melody was also used by Uncle Dave Macon for his "Over the Mountains."

Source for notated version:

Printed sources:

Recorded sources: Document Records, "Earl Johnson Vol. 2 1927 - 1931" (1997). Okeh 45194 (78 RPM), Earl Johnson's Clodhoppers (1927).




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