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Jim Garland (1905-1978) was a songwriter with the National Miners Union during the Harlan County War in Kentucky.


"Jim Garland, the author [of 'I Don't Want Your Millions, Mister'], was a younger brother of Aunt Molly Jackson, a union stalwart who composed many ballads about the miners' struggles. Garland himself was a coal miner who had been blacklisted for union activity.... ['I Don't Want Your Millions, Mister'] was written in 1932 during the dark days of the coal mining wars in Harlan County, Kentucky. The tune is that of an old love song known as 'East Virginia' or 'Greenback Dollars.' The song became more widely known when the Almanac singers recorded it in 1941. Woody Guthrie always insisted they were insincere in singing it: 'If we'd only admit it, we do want the man's millions and diamond ring and his yacht and everything else.'"

—Edith Fowke and Joe Glazer, Songs of Work and Freedom


I Don't Want Your Millions, Mister


 

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