Peter Emberley

'Peter Emberley'. The story of a young man from Prince Edward Island who was fatally injured in the Miramichi lumberwoods when a log rolled on him. John Calhoun, a friend of the lad, composed the verses in 1881 and a local singer, Abraham Munn, set them to a traditional Irish tune.

'Peter Emberley'

'Peter Emberley'. The story of a young man from Prince Edward Island who was fatally injured in the Miramichi lumberwoods when a log rolled on him. John Calhoun, a friend of the lad, composed the verses in 1881 and a local singer, Abraham Munn, set them to a traditional Irish tune. The ballad is the favourite lumbering song of New Brunswick; it also was sung along all the east coast of Canada and in Ontario lumbercamps. The tune is used as the theme of the second movement of Kelsey Jones'Miramichi Ballad. The song is published in Edith Fowke'sThe Penguin Book of Canadian Folk Songs and was recorded by Tom Kines for Canadian Folk Songs: a Centennial Collection (9-RCA/RCI CS-100-7/5-ACM 39 CD) and Charlie MacKinnon (Boot BTM-2006). Words to the variant 'Peter Amberlay' were published in W. Roy Mackenzie's Ballads and Sea Songs from Nova Scotia (Cambridge, Mass 1928). A 'Peter Rambelay,' to a different tune, can be found in Helen Creighton'sSongs and Ballads from Nova Scotia and has been recorded by Wade Hemsworth (Folk FW-6821) and Alan Mills (RCI 21).


Further Reading

  • Manny, Louise. 'The ballad of Peter Amberley,' Atlantic Advocate, vol 53, Jul 1963