Boston Public Library
Exhibitions

The Great Boston Fire, 1872 – Item 3 of 5

homeless_tonight
J.H. Bufford’s Lith. Words and music by C.A. White, Homeless To-Night or Boston in Ashes, 1872.
Written by Boston’s preeminent song writer C.A. White, this somber ballad was told from the perspective of the two young girls portrayed on this sheet music cover.  The youths are depicted fleeing the scene of the blaze which swept through the commercial district destroying many homes and businesses, and taking a number of lives.  As the city crumbles around them, the girls sing, “Lone and weary through the streets we wander, for, we have no place to lay our heads, not a friend on earth is left to shelter us, for, both our parents now are dead.”

 

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