Sung by: Gus Mahon
Recorded in Heber Springs, AR 8/22/62

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Well, you read that Samson from his birth,
The strongest man that was ever on earth,
Read way back in the ancient times
Where he killed six thousand of them Philistines.
Samson, he went a-wandering about,
Samson's strength, it was never found out.
Samson's wife got up on her knees,
Saying, "Tell where your strength lies, if you please."
Samson's wife, she talk so fair,
Told his wife for to cut his hair.
Shave my head just as clean as your hand,
Then the strength'll come like a natural man.

Chorus: Well, ain't that a witness
(For my Lord - sung falsetto)
Ain't that a witness
(For my Lord)
Well, ain't that a witness
(For my Lord)
Ain't that a witness
(For my Lord.)

Well, you read that 'Thuselum, from his birth,
Oldest man that was ever on earth,
He lived nine hundred and sixty-nine,
Died and went to Heaven just in due time.


John the . . . , John divine,
Who'd want to write that name of mine,
Stick my finger in the blood of the lamb,
I'll write that name, oh, too divine.
John, he was a witness
(For my Lord.)
John was a witness
(For my Lord.)
John was a witness
(For my Lord.)
John, he was a witness
(For my Lord.)

(Dr. Wolf: "Where'd you learn that?"
Mr. Mahon: "Learned it from some niggers I . . . One night I'd been to church, I was about seventeen, eighteen years old, and the niggers was having church, and they keep all night, and I had to ride back by that, you know, horseback. And they was having a big time, and I hooked my pony up and went in there and just sang. The old nigger preacher sang the first part, and the old women sang that last. They was sitting back there a-fanning, you know, and . . ."
Dr. Wolf: "You mean that 'For my Lord' part, that's where
. . ."
Mr. Mahon: "Yes, 'For my Lord.' And he just sung the other part. Yeah, he'd . . ."
Dr. Wolf: "Where was that? Where was that?"
Mr. Mahon: "Down here at Earle, Arkansas."
Dr. Wolf: "Earle? Oh, I see.")

All Songs Recorded by John Quincy Wolf, Jr., unless otherwise noted

The John Quincy Wolf Folklore Collection
Lyon College, Batesville, Arkansas
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