Hunting Songs, Volume One: The Lakeland Fell Packs, Ron Black and Wendy Fraser, Blurb Publishing, 2011, 75 pages, 7.50 pounds (soft cover), 15.50 pounds (hard cover), www.cumbrian-lad.comRon Black and Wendy Fraser collaborated on this collection—a folk history, really—of Lakeland hunting songs. Over the course of three-hundred years, followers of the fell packs of the English Lake District wrote these songs to memorialize historic runs, iconic huntsmen, special foxhounds, and—what pleased me especially—brave terriers! Perhaps I just never noticed, but I cannot recall any other book of hunting songs and poems that includes odes to these feisty little creatures.
Or perhaps I paid special notice here because I now happen to be the smitten owner of a nine-month-old Border terrier whose ancestors scurried in their determined fashion over those same fells on the English-Scottish border. Here’s the story of Badger and Butcher by Mr. and Mrs. Curry, and it’s still sung today!