Traditional - Mary Had A Little Lamb

First performance: 03/03/1974


Bruce  used the song only once as a snippet:
1974-03-03 Gaston Hall, Washington, DC (Late) 
"Walking The Dog" includes Dave Sancious playing a bit of "Mary Had A Little Lamb" during his solo.


"Mary Had a Little Lamb" is an English language nursery rhyme of nineteenth-century American origin. The nursery rhyme was first published by the Boston publishing firm Marsh, Capen & Lyon, as a poem by Sarah Josepha Hale on May 24, 1830, and was possibly inspired by an actual incident. There are competing theories on the origin and inspiration of this poem. One holds that John Roulstone wrote the first four lines and that the final twelve lines, less childlike than the first, were composed by Sarah Josepha Hale; others claim that Hale was responsible for the entire poem. As a young girl, Mary Sawyer (later Mary Tyler) kept a pet lamb that 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 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 ..."

Other cover versions

Bruce on the artist


Mary had a little lamb
It's fleece was white as snow, yeah
Everywhere the child went
The lamb, the lamb was sure to go, yeah
He followed her to school one day
And broke the teacher's rule
And what a time did they have
That day at school
Tisket, tasket, baby alright
A green and yellow basket, now
I wrote a letter to my baby
And on my way I passed it, now
Hit it