Captain Old Blue (unknown, ca. 1890 ). This rare song relates to the gruesome murder of about 30 Chinese placer miners in Hells Canyon in 1887. "Captain Old Blue" is believed to be the leader of the gang that perpetrated the atrocity, but the lyrics pertain more specifically to the cattle and horse thievery of the gang which operated in the Wallowa Mountains on the Oregon side of Hells Canyon. The gang undoubtedly also crossed the river into Idaho as well. Some verses were collected during Louis Attebery's Ph.D. thesis work in the 1950s. The lyrics here were obtained by Gary Eller in September, 2009 from Dave Wahl of Genessee, Idaho. Gary's rendition is given here, using the melody (Dreary Black Hills) that Dave recalled from hearing the song as a boy. Gregory Nokes, an noted authority on the Hells Canyon massacre, independently found a similar set of lyrics.

Blind Girl Went to Heaven (Otis Howard, early 1900s). This waltz was composed by beloved Idaho old time fiddler Otis Howard. The date of composition is unknown, but could have been written as early as the early 1900s. The rendition here by Otis Howard on fiddle and Dave Frisbee on rhythm guitar was recorded by Dave at Dave's Emmett home in January, 1963 when Otis Howard was 75 years old. The inspiration for the name is unknown. The photo at right from a Howard family scrapbook shows Otis and his wife Sadie, most likely near Atlanta or Rocky Bar, Idaho in the 1920s.







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