Judy Cook, Folksinger

Frozen Logger

Author: Jim Stevens of Aberdeen, WA

Source: childhood. Written 1928 Published 1949 - Oregon Historical Quarterly, volume 50, number 4. December 1949.

Notes: Now about the same time that Cowboys were at their height - the 1870's & '80s - logging in the woods of the northern US was also big. It's surprising to think of the similarities of these two very different occupations. Both logs and cattle were branded to show their owners and rustling was a problem in both cases. Both logs and cattle were brought to market in great drives where there was a danger of being crushed. The men who drove the logs - as those who drove the cows - had long, evenings with just each other?s company after the hard, dangerous work of the day. They entertained each other with songs and stories. Lumberjacks were famous for brags and exaggerations. Though ?The Frozen Logger? wasn?t written until 1928 it certainly has the right feel to it. I recently found that it?s author, James Stevens, actually wrote it as ?a 6?7? waitress? which to someone like myself who has reached ?a certain age? sounds much better than ?a 40 year old waitress?. The "Frozen Logger" was written by the late Jim Stevens, of Aberdeen Wa. As a youngster of 12, he went into the Northwest woods as a cooks helper in the logging camps. He wrote the "Frozen Logger" and "THE PAUL BUNYON TALES" based on stories he heard in the bunkhouse at night. He was a buddy of the late Ivar Haglund, famous Seattle restaurant owner, Iver's Acres of Clams. Jim wrote the material for the "Keep Washington Green Campaign" that Ivar sang on Seattle radio in the late fourties and early fifties. By the way, his original writing differs somewhat from the populiar recorded and written versions. In Maine, a Mackinaw is a heavy woolen coat Here?s a song about another wood cutter; a classic tall tale of a song called the Frozen Logger. Many of you will know this and can sing along with me even though there is no chorus?Here?s The Frozen Logger.