Monday, August 15, 2011

Mary Had A Little Lamb

Remember the poem, "Mary Had A Little Lamb"? It was first published on May 24th, 1830 as an original poem by Sarah Josepha Hale and was inspired by a true childhood story.


As a girl, Mary Sawyer (later Mrs. Mary Tyler) kept a pet lamb, which she took to school one day at the suggestion of her brother. A commotion naturally ensued. Mary recalled: "Visiting school that morning was a young man by the name of John Roulstone, a nephew of the Reverend Lemuel Capen, who was then settled in Sterling. It was the custom then for students to prepare for college with ministers, and for this purpose Mr. Roulstone was studying with his uncle. The young man was very much pleased with the incident of the lamb; and the next day he rode across the fields on horseback to the little old schoolhouse and handed me a slip of paper which had written upon it the three original stanzas of the poem..."
(Source Wikipedia: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mary_Had_a_Little_Lamb)


The Redstone School was built in 1798. It was bought by Henry Ford in 1923 and relocated to Henry Ford's New England Village in Sudbury, Massachusetts. This 1927 photo from The Baltimore Sun shows Henry Ford watching 8 year old Edith Lebree studying her reader at the opening of the new school.



Henry Ford inside the Redstone School of Mary Had A Little Lamb fame, January 18,1927. 
SKU# BFZ-609-BS


The first stanza of the poem was also used by Thomas Edison, Henry Ford's friend, to test his invention of the phonograph in 1877 making it the 2nd successful audio recording to be made and played back.


Mary had a little lamb,
little lamb, little lamb,
Mary had a little lamb,
whose fleece was white as snow.

And everywhere that Mary went,
Mary went, Mary went,
and everywhere that Mary went,
the lamb was sure to go.

It followed her to school one day
school one day, school one day,
It followed her to school one day,
which was against the rules.

It made the children laugh and play,
laugh and play, laugh and play,
it made the children laugh and play
to see a lamb at school.

And so the teacher turned it out,
turned it out, turned it out,
And so the teacher turned it out,
but still it lingered near,

And waited patiently about,
patiently about, patiently about,
And waited patiently about
till Mary did appear.

"Why does the lamb love Mary so?"
Love Mary so? Love Mary so?
"Why does the lamb love Mary so,"
the eager children cry.

"Why, Mary loves the lamb, you know."
The lamb, you know, the lamb, you know,
"Why, Mary loves the lamb, you know,"
 the teacher did reply.




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