"The L & N Don't Stop Here Anymore" as written by and Jean Ritchie....
When I was a curly headed baby
My daddy sat me down upon his knee
He said, "Boy, you go to school and learn your letters
Don't you be a dirty miner like me"

I was born and raised in the mouth of the Hazard Hollow
Coal cars rambled past my door
Now they're standin' in a rusty row all empty
And the L & N
Don't stop here anymore

I used to think my daddy was a black man
With script enough to buy the company store
Now he goes downtown with empty pockets
And his face is white as a February snow

I was born and raised in the mouth of the Hazard Hollow
Coal cars rambled past my door
Now they're standin' in a rusty row all empty
And the L & N
Don't stop here anymore

Last night I dreamed I went down to the coal yard
To draw my pay like I always did before
But them ol' kudzu vines were comin' through the window
And the leaves and grass were growin' through the floor

I was born and raised in the mouth of the Hazard Hollow
Coal cars rambled past my door
Now they're standin' in a rusty row all empty
And the L & N
Don't stop here anymore


Lyrics submitted by ButNeverOutgunned

"The L & N Don't Stop Here Anymore" as written by

Lyrics © GEORDIE MUSIC PUBLISHING CO.

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The L & N Don't Stop Here Anymore song meanings
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  • +1
    Song MeaningThis song touches my life in numerous ways. The L&N refers to the Louisville & Nashville railroad company that hauled coal out of the mines in the Appalachian Mountain region where I grew up. If you're not familiar with the history of coal mining, the references in this song must be quite mysterious. No one in my family was a miner, but the L&N's coal cars did indeed rumble by my door, barely 50 yards away. Hazard Hollow probably refers to Hazard County, Kentucky. The song is generally about what happened to miners when a mine ran out of coal and shut down, leaving the dependent miners destitute. I remember many friends who once came home blackened by coal dust, when the jobs ran out they indeed looked white as snow. Miners do not acquire suntans.

    Kudzu vines are an invasive species that grows rampantly throughout the region, in the right conditions they can completely envelop and kill native trees. If left unchecked, Ive seen them completely envelop small buildings & houses. Dont believe it? maxshores.com/kudzu/

    The line that most people wonder about is "with scrip enough to buy the company store." The word is often mis-spelled as "script", but its actually "scrip", which means a kind of private money or currency that was issued by the coal companies in lieu of regular money. The miners who worked for these companies, their lives were often totally dependent on the company: They lived in company-owned housing ("coal camps"), bought food from a company-owned general store, were paid in company scrip instead of regular money, and when they couldnt make ends meet, they received "loans" or advances on pay from the company... in the form of scrip, which could only be spent at the company store. Some miners went so deeply into this debt-trap, the song "Sixteen Tons" includes a line "St Peter dont you call me, cause I cant go...I owe my soul to the company store".

    This describes mining conditions in the early half of the 20th century. By my time, the 70's & 80's, relations had improved somewhat. When the mines were working, miners were paid quite well and had a reputation for thick wallets. But still I witnessed the results of several shut-downs and strikes, and its not real fun what happens to a small town when its major source of employment shuts down.
    Seems the same story is played out time and again in every industry, all over the world, with the recent recession.
    solagregon December 11, 2012   Link

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