Performer: Paul Robeson.
Tune: Hall Johnson.
John Henry was a steel-driving man,
Carried his hammer all the time,
And before he let that steam drill beat him down,
Said he’d die with his hammer in his hand,
Said he’d die with his hammer in his hand.
John Henry went to the mountain top,
Beat that steam drill down,
But the rock was high; John Henry was so small,
That he laid down his hammer and he died,
Yes, he laid down his hammer and he died.
John Henry had a pretty little gal,
And her name was Polly Ann,
And when John was laying on his bed so low,
Polly drived with his hammer like a man,
Took and drived with his hammer like a man.