I Was Born in East Virginia (trad. adapted by Debi Smith) The Carter Family, who inspired me early in my career, sang the first version of this. I was thrilled to have the opportunity to sing with Janette Carter at The Carter Family Fold when I was starting out, and I have always enjoyed performing their legendary songs.


I was born in East Virginia, - North Carolina I did roam,

There I met a fair pretty maiden, - Her name and age I do not Know.

Her hair it was a brightsome color, - And her lips a ruby red,

On her breast she wore white lilies - There I longed to lay my head.

Well, in my heart you are my darlin', - At my door you're welcome in,

At my gate I'll meet you my darlin' - If your love I could only win.

I'd rather be in some dark holler, - Where the sun refuse to shine,

Than to see you be another man's darlin' - And to know that you'll never be mine.

Well in the night I'm dreamin' about you, - In the day I find no rest,

Just the thought of you my darlin' - Sends aching pain all through my breast.

Well when I'm dead and in my coffin, - With my feet turned toward the sun,

Come and sit beside me darlin' - Come and think on the way you’ve done.