New Hampshire Tidbits: The Song “My Old New Hampshire Home”

My Old New Hampshire Home, Historical American Sheet Music, Duke University Library, Digital Collection

My Old New Hampshire Home, Historical American Sheet Music, Duke University Library, Digital Collection

 

Considered a sentimental ballad, the tune “My Old New Hampshire Home,” was composed by Harry Von Tilzer, and lyricist Andrew B. Sterling in 1898. Neither of these two men were from New Hampshire, though they were intimately connected with the New England vaudeville shows.

Here is (above) possibly the earliest recording of this song, the quality is not the best, and the accent of the singer is definitely not a New Hampshire one (notice how he pronounced New Hamp-shure).  The song was recorded and sung by several people, and in 1924 (my favorite) the Peerless Quartet recorded this version.

This song is not among the list of New Hampshire’s ‘honorary state songs‘ but perhaps it should be!  I have included the lyrics of the song below.

Far away on the hills of old New Hampshire
Many years ago we parted, Ruth and I
By the stream where we wandered in the gloaming
It was there I kissed my love a sad good-bye
She clung to me and trembled when I told her
And pleadingly she begged of me to stay
We parted and I left her broken hearted
In the old New Hampshire village far away

Now the sunshine lingers there
And the roses bloom as fair
In the wildwood where together we would roam
In the village church-yard near
Sleeps the one I loved so dear
On the hills of my old New Hampshire home

In my dreams by the stream last night I wandered
And I thought my love was standing by my side
Once again then I told her that I loved her
Once again she promised she would be my bride
And as I stooped to kiss her I awakened
I called her, but she was not there to hear
My heart lies buried with her ‘neath the willow
In the old New Hampshire home I love so dear

Now the sunshine lingers there
And the roses bloom as fair
In the wildwood where together we would roam
In the village church-yard near
Sleeps the one I loved so dear
On the hills of my old New Hampshire home

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