Elizabeth Chadwick, Midwife
Five Songs from “Genealogy” Elizabeth Chadwick, Midwife
Falmouth, Massachusetts (1702 - 1803)

Words and music by Winfield Shaw Clark

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Sheet music (60K pdf)

Elizabeth Chadwick, Midwife.mp3
I am an old woman now,
One hundred and one.
Yet I still ride horseback over the dunes,
I’m still a midwife.

I know ev’ry child in town –
Now some are full-grown –
And I have heard their poor mothers moan,
Delivering them to life.

I was once a wife, two children born
Two children born, but oh!, that was all.
My son’s down east, a settler,
Husband, daughter, both were called.

I went to apprentice then
Dame Sarah, midwife.
She knew all the white herbs:
Plantain, vervain,
Oyl of St. Johnswort.

And when Mistress passed away
Her cloak fell to me,
And I ride horseback over the dunes;
Deliver thy babes to thee.

Leaf of tansy bruised, a soothing tea,
Oyl of St. Johnswort eases her pain
Milady must not fever;
Bathe her body with vervain.

I am an old woman now,
One hundred and one.
Yet I still ride horseback over the dunes,
I’m still a midwife.

Copyright © Winfield Clark 1990-2013


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