Chris Brown
Cornish Carols in Australia
Sat Aug 4, 2012 6:13pm

Cornish Carols were to be found wherever Cornish men went to mine. They live on in Grass Valley in the gold bearing hills of California and I suspect elsewhere.

Philip Payton compiled Cornish Carols From Australia (Truran Publications 1983), a book of some of these and an interesting history of Cornish Carols in Australia. These he traces back to an 1893 book The Christmas Welcome published by A Grummett in Moonta, South Australia. The composers listed were J H Thomas, W Holman, Jas Richards, J Coad, J Hodge, T Spargo and others. The format of this very much follows the English Books of Cornish Carols published at about the same time by Heard & Sons of Truro in Cornwall.

J L Davey (Late of Moonta, South Australia) published a Collection of Cornish Carols (Adelaide date ?). He says that this contains the most popular carols from The Christmas Welcome and a few new ones. 10 of the 18 carols are arranged by J H Thomas, 5 are by Davey himself and there are 1 each from E E Butson, Wm Holman and Jos Glasson.

Yes, they are worth singing.

  • Australasian WG Xmas music
    Fynn Titford-Mock, Fri Aug 3 9:40am
    Several books of "Cornish Carols" were published in Australia in the early 20th century. A freely downloadable example is at the National Library of Australia, by one J.L. Davey of Moonta, here:... more
    • J.H.Thomas
      Christine Peach, Thu Feb 11 7:07am
      I am the great granddaughter of J.H. Thomas of Moonta S.A. He composed many of the cornish carols in the Christmas Welcome . My brother Noel Paech has his baton and some of his memorabilia, most of... more
    • Re: Australasian WG Xmas music
      Shelagh Noden, Sat Aug 4 8:53pm
      We sang 'Awake with joy, salute the morn' last Christmas in Aberdeen, which is in the book, also 'With what resplendent beauty shone' which isn't. Last year I attended the conference on 19th century... more
    • Cornish Carols in Australia
      Chris Brown, Sat Aug 4 6:13pm
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