REDWING

Posted on Posted in Breedloves's Folk Songs
REDWING
“Red Wing” it is much less of a rarity than many would think, it was written by
Thurmond Chatterlay. The year following Red Wing’s publication (1908), a 24 year old
Native American girl from the Winnebago reservation started to break into films,
eventually making some with the venerable D.W. Griffith. She was also a star in the first
silent adaptation of the novel Ramona. Her name just happened to be Princess Redwing
(one word). There is no definitive evidence either way as to any connection with the
titling of Mills’ composition, but the timing was, perhaps, fortuitous for both.
There once was an Indian maid a shy little prairie maid
who sang all day a love song gay as through the fields she’d while the hours away.
She loved an Indian brave this shy little prairie maid
and then one day he rode away to battle far away..
{Chorus}
Oh the moon shines tonight on pretty Red Wing,
the breeze is sighing, the night birds crying,
For a far far away her brave is dying
and Red Wings’s crying her heart away.
She watched for him day and night,
She kept all the campfires bright,
And under the sky,
Each night she would lie,
And dream about his coming by and by
But when all the braves returned the heart of Red Wing yearned
for far far away her warrior brave fell bravely in the fray.
{chorus}
Now the Moon shines tonight on pretty Redwing,
the breeze is sighing, the night birds crying,
for a far’neath his star her brave is sleeping,
while Redwing’s weeping her heart away.