Thursday, May 12, 2011

Follow the Drinking Gourd


Clover saw this stamp printed on a concrete block in the middle of downtown Montpelier, VT. It says "Follow the Drinking Gourd" - an American folk song that was used by the Underground Railroad as a sort of code or code breaking system that enabled slaves fleeing from the south to find their way north.  A drinking gourd is a hollowed out melon used as a water dipper, but in the context of the Underground Railroad movement it was a code for the Big Dipper constellation which when viewed in the night sky, would direct escaping slaves north. The Big Dipper constellation can also be seen on the concrete block, above the clasped hands.

Oddly enough, on the next concrete block, Clover saw that there was a carved watermelon. It certainly wasn't a hollowed out drinking water dipper, but it was nicely carved. Who left it there? Why? Do they know what the Drinking Gourd means? Mysteries...

For the lyrics to Follow The Drinking Gourd and their meaning, click here.

2 comments:

  1. What is up with that stupid ribit?????? :P

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    1. Well, he's a labbit, not a ribit. I think a ribit is what a frog says. Don't blame him for being stupid. He's made of vinyl and is hollow and has no brain.

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