Last Train From Poor Valley

Lyrics: Norman Blake
Music: Norman Blake

Played Jerry Garcia with Garcia & Saunders and with Legion Of Mary (sometimes wrongly listed as "Last Train from Corvallis" on setlists and tapes).

It was good one time
Everything was mighty fine
The coal tipple roared day and night
And things they got slow
For reasons I don't know
And chill winds they pulled into sight

The mines they closed down
Everybody lay around
There wasn't very much left to do
'Cept stand in that line
Get your ration script on time
And woman I could see it killin' you

Now the soft new snow of December
Lightly falls my cabin around
Saw the last train from Poor Valley
Bringing brown-haired Becky Richmond bound

It's been comin' on I know
You soon will be gone
Leavin' crossed your mind every day
[Then you said to me]
"Things are bad back home, you see
I guess I'd better be on my way"


I should hate you now
But I never could somehow
A miner's wife you weren't cut out to be
It wasn't what you thought
Just some dreams that you bought
When you left home and ran away with me

Saw the last train from Poor Valley
Bringing brown-haired Becky Richmond bound
Jerry Garcia Recordings
     Date Album Recorded By
     27 Feb 1975 Jerry Garcia Collection, Volume 1 Legion Of Mary

Jerry Garcia noted how he came to play the song in a 1989 interview for a Built To Last promo disc:
Q: Do you have thoughts of ever taking a Seldom Scene song and working it up

JG: I've already done a couple of them at various times. They're not really their songs either - they steal 'em, too. They did a Norman Blake song which I took from their arrangement - not really, but I was influenced by their performance of it. I used to do a tune called The Last Train from Poor Valley, I used to do it with the Garcia Band years ago. It's a great song, and they had a really nice performance on one of their records.

Further Information
For more information on recordings see Matt Schofield's Grateful Dead Family Discography


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