Cousin Jack (S. Knightley)

Show Of Hands

Steve Knightley & Phil Beer

A song written by Steve Knightley from multi-award winning roots/folk duo, Show of Hands, and covered by several other local musicians.

When the Cornish mining industry was in decline, thousands of miners were left unemployed and, without a welfare system, they had little alternative but to head out across the globe to America, Africa and Australia. Many knew this was a one way ticket and they would never see their family or their homeland again.  But these were the best miners in the world and their new employers recognised this and asked them if they knew of anyone else who would like to come out to work . The miners would say that they had a cousin, Jack, back home who would come, and now, generations on, there are literally thousands upon thousands of Cousin Jacks across the globe.  Some make the trip back, some don’t, but they do say that in any hole on this planet, you will find a Cornishman at the bottom of it ………………….. digging.