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ERIC Number: EJ947824
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2011
Pages: 24
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 0
ISSN: ISSN-0275-7664
From "No Place" to Home: The Quest for a Western Home in Brewster Higley's "Home on the Range"
Cooper, C. M.
Great Plains Quarterly, v31 n4 p267-290 Fall 2011
In the spring of 1934, New York attorney Samuel Moanfeldt set out on a trip that would take him through most of the states west of the Mississippi in search of the origins of the popular American folk song "Home on the Range." The reason for his trip was a $500,000 lawsuit filed by William and Mary Goodwin of Tempe, Arizona, who claimed that they had written the song--which was then the most popular tune on the American airwaves--and were owed royalties in arrears for its broadcast on public radio. Moanfeldt's investigation ended in Smith County, Kansas, where he found proof that the song had originated in the form of a poem written in 1872 by a pioneer doctor named Brewster Higley. The case was closed, but Moanfeldt's report of his investigation revealed much about the song's controversial history. For this, we are indebted to the Goodwins, without whose false claims of authorship this story might have been lost.
Center for Great Plains Studies. University of Nebraska-Lincoln, 1155 Q Street, Hewit Place, P.O. Box 880214, Lincoln, NE 68588-0214. Tel: 402-472-3082; Fax: 402-472-0463; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A