An Introduction by Ann Griggs

The following text was the introduction to A Heritage of Songs written by Griggs at Gould Academy in 1954.

"Several years ago Dr. George B. Farnsworth, Trustee of Gould Academy, Bethel, Maine, where I was teaching music, wrote me a letter asking if I would be interested in meeting Carrie Grover, who had attended Gould Academy many years before. He said she knew a large number of folk songs which he thought worth recording.

Mrs. Grover came to Bethel and as I heard her sing in her own inmitable manner these ballads of love and adventure, many sad and mournful, others lilting with laughter, I realized that here was a heritage which should not only be preserved on records but put in such form as to be available for those who are interested in the study of folk music. Dr. Farnsworth enthusiastically agreed and work was begun on transcribing to music paper the songs from records made by Mrs. Grover. The task was considerable, but my belief in their value grew as I worked.

Mrs. Grover's songs include many that have never been published and those which can be found in other collections are sung to tunes whose plaintive beauty excels other settings with which I have compared them. Many of the melodies are based on ancient Greek modes. She has recorded several songs for the collection made by Alan Lomax for the Library of Congress and these can be heard as she sang them for the traveling library which is available by writing to Washington. She has also appeared as a ballad singer in the folk festivals in Philidelphia and in Boston Garden.

Mrs. Grover has included with the songs many interesting incidents of her family life and notes which relate the songs to their historical background. All these add to the value of the collection." - Ann L. Griggs