Can Anyone Help with the Lyrics to a Song about a Little Eskimo?

I recently received this question:

My Aunts sung us this song as children and I can never remember the lyrics. My grandmother taught it to them and she was a native American Indian but from Florida (nowhere near Alaska)…

I am a little Eskimo. I live outside in the land of snow. ……..
I have a dog and it pulls my sled. I crack my whip and away away.
Over the ice and the snow balls too there are so many nice things to do. etc.

If you can find them anywhere, it would be greatly appreciated.

Lots of Love Stephanie, Mark, Lani, Kari, Luke, and Kadi Legendre

If anyone can help out with the lyrics, please comment below.

Thanks in advance!

Mama Lisa

This article was posted on Wednesday, July 16th, 2008 at 12:28 pm and is filed under American Kids Songs, Children's Songs, Countries & Cultures, Eskimo, Native American Indian, Questions, Readers Questions, USA. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site.

28 Responses to “Can Anyone Help with the Lyrics to a Song about a Little Eskimo?”

  1. Oyie Sy Beng Says:

    Hi Stephanie,
    I hope this can help you . I am from the Philippines and I teach pre-schoolers for 38 years. This might help you. I got the song from my book Exploring Music.

    Little Eskimo ( title)
    Why is your house made of ice and snow,
    Eskimo, little Eskimo?
    My house is built where the cold winds blow,
    All I have is ice and snow

    Why is your suit made of fur and skin,
    Eskimo, little Eskimo?
    My suit is made of fur and skin
    So the cold wind can’t creep in.

    Just how long is your winter night,
    Eskimo, little Eskimo?
    For two whole months there is no light
    On our longest winter night.

    What do you do on your long summer day,
    Eskimo, little Eskimo?
    That is the time when I play and play,
    On our two months summer day.
    ________________________________________
    If you are interested,
    I can send the musical notations in my next mail. I’ll try scanning the notes.
    From,
    Oyie
    Hi Mama Liza.
    Thank you for this wonderful site. I discovered it just now. I saw the Philippine songs and I enjoyed listening to Bahay Kubo….
    You’re great!!!! I love browsing through your website.
    Oyie

  2. Cheryl Says:

    Hi Stephanie,

    Here are the lyrics as passed down in my family.

    I am a gay little eskimo, I live up north in a hut of snow, I play on the ice and I snowball too! There are so many nice things to do.

    My coat is of fur and my hat is too, Jack Frost cannot bite me as he does you, I’m just as warm, just as warm can be, up in my home by the frozen sea.

    I have 3 dogs and they pull my sleigh, Crack my whip and away, away, over the ice and the snow they flee, up in my home by the frozen sea.

  3. susan motis Says:

    i am from florida and this is a song my grandmother sang to me. she was born in frostproof florida in 1912.
    i am a gay little eskimo
    i live up north in a house of snow
    i play on the ice and with snow balls too, there are so many nice things to do
    i have 3 big dogs and they pull my sley
    i crack my whip and away and away
    over the ice and the snow they flee
    up to my home by the frozen sea.

  4. Lorna Willette Says:

    My dad (born in 1905) used to sing this song to me.
    “I am a gay little eskimo, I live in the north in a house of snow, I play on the ice and I snowball too, there are so many nice things to do.

    I have three big dogs and they pull my sleigh, I crack my whip and away and away, it’s over the ice and the snow we flee, back to my home on the frozen sea.

  5. Lorraine Bloch Says:

    My dad born 1915 used to sing this to me. I have forgotten some of the words but some of the other replies brought memories back. I lived 600 miles from Perth Western Australia as a child. This is what I remember.

    “I am a gay little eskimo
    I live up the north in a house of snow,
    I play ……
    there are so many nice things to do.

    My hat’s made of fur and my coat is too,
    Jack Frost cannot bite me as he does you
    (I live up the north in a house of snow
    There are so many nice things to do.) < maybe the last two lines are repeats.

  6. Laura Collins Says:

    Apropos to something else we were talking about, I just sang this song to my teenage kids and decided to look on the internet, to see if anyone else remembers it too … hurrah, I’m not the only one!!

    I sang it in kindergarten in Kitchener, Ontario, in 1962. We moved to London, England in 1963 (where I live now) and I’ve never heard it since.

    I don’t think it would be PC to sing songs about being a gay little eskimo any more!

  7. eva Says:

    i see your request is a few years ago, but i’m curious………

    did you get a satisfactory answer to your question about the lyrics to the “eskimo song”?

    just today… i received from my grade 3 teacher the hand typed lyrics, with hand drawn music notes to this song. i couldn’t remember which grade i had learned this song – so i asked her if she knew it…..
    she was impress that i’d remembered 10 out of the 12 lines of the song….

    amazing what a childhood memory can be like.
    let me know if you’d like more info

    hopefully i’ll hear back from you,
    eva

  8. Lisa Says:

    Please share your version of the “Eskimo Song” with us Eva… Thanks!

  9. ingrid Deringer Says:

    This is how my mother sang it to us and how I sang it to daughter:

    I am a gay little Eskimo
    I live in the land of the ice and snow
    I play on the ice and snowball throw
    Oh what a jolly time I have oh oh

    I have 3 wee dogs and they pull my sleigh
    I crack the whip and away and away
    Over the ice and the snow we go
    Oh what a jolly time we have oh oh

    My cap is fur and my coat is too
    Jackie frost can you catch me a seal can you
    For I am as gay as gay as can be
    Down the land of the frozen sea

  10. Stephanie Says:

    Thank you so much. I was just singing it to my children and searched again for the lyrics and came across this post from years ago. I want to thank everyone for their responses. It is the gay little Eskimo song. And gay means happy. :)

  11. joachim Says:

    in 1959/1960 in the first year of english (as first foreign language)
    in elementary school in berlin we learned this song:
    away up north, in the ice and snow
    there lives a jolly little eskimo.
    he wears a furry coat and so
    he doesn’t shiver when the cold winds blow.
    it came into my mind today, and i because i had been wondering
    where it came from, i looked on the internet, but i found several
    quite different versions …

  12. Andy Says:

    I would really like to know the tune for the song that starts with the words:

    ‘I am a gay little Eskimo
    I live up north in a house of snow’

    Can anyone write down the musical notes for us?

  13. Andrea Sawyer Says:

    I was born in New Bedford, Mass. My father used to sing this version of the eskimo song to me around 1959-early 1960’s. I am wondering about the origin of this song which none of my friends ever heard of. Is it east coast from the 1920’s ( when my father was born)? Also I have never seen it in any old school books or children’s song books!
    I am a gay little eskimo
    I live in the land of the ice and snow
    Oh, I am happy, as happy as can be
    ‘Cause I live in the land of the frozen sea!

  14. Lisa Says:

    I found this…

    Six Jolly Eskimo

    Six jolly Eskimo
    Lived in the land of ice and snow;
    They played with their ivory dolls all night
    In a stuffy igloo, with a smoky oil light.
    I wouldn’t live in a smoky igloo,
    Would you?

    “They dressed in sealskin from head to heel.
    I wonder how such a suit would feel!
    They chewed their blubber and smacked their lips.
    And wiggled their toes and finger-tips:
    But I wouldn’t like such food to chew,
    Would you?”

  15. Robert D Smith Says:

    This song has haunted me from time to time. I learned it probably in kindergarten or first grade (about 1950). all I remember of it is this — I hope it’s accurate:

    Way up north — in the — ice and snow
    There lives a — jolly little — eskimo…

    That’s all the lyrics I can remember. I’ve tried to suggest the meter by the way I’ve presented the text. It would be fun to hear the song again as I learned it. I suspect there are many versions.

  16. Joy Hood Says:

    I was singing this little song today, and saw this cute picture on Facebook…two little kids all bundled up, sitting on a doorstep, with snow all around them.
    So I decided to write it in a post yo share with my friends…

    Here is the way I learned it in school in Florida so time around
    1948.

    Here’s a little song I learned in school…

    🎶 Away up North In the ice and snow,
    There lives a jolly little
    Eskimo…

    She wears a furry coat
    And so…

    She doesn’t even shiver

    When the cold
    Winds blow ! 🎶

  17. Lisa Says:

    Thanks for sharing Joy! Would you like to record it for us? :) Mama Lis

  18. hayley Says:

    Lyrics I learned……Away up north in the ice and snow…….there lives a jolly little Eskimo…..he wears a furry coat and so……he doesn’t even shiver when the cold winds blow. He rides away with his dog and sled…..each morning when he tumbles out of bed……he lives up north in the ice and snow…..this furry little jolly little Eskimo..

  19. Marlin Koehn Says:

    I still have the song book we used in school called New Music Horizons #2 that we sang The Little Eskmio song on page 82. It has 3 verses.
    1. Away up north in the ice and snow, There lives a jolly little Eskmio. He wears a furry coat and so He doesn’t even shiver when the cold winds blow.

  20. Lesa Says:

    My dad taught me a version of this as a child. He was born in 1938 and so it must’ve been in the mid 40s when he sang this in school. It went like this:

    I know a jolly Eskimo,
    Who lives in the land of ice and snow.
    At times it’s very cold you know.
    He’s a Merry little jolly little Eskimo.

    Does anyone remember it sounding anything like that? My dad taught that to me and I taught that to my kids and my daughter is teaching it to my grandkids. With each generation it’s always the same words and we may be singing it completely wrong.

  21. Gayle Says:

    Hi. I grew up in Miami, Florida. I still remember a song we were taught in kindergarten there. I have never heard it anywhere else. The lyrics are as follows:
    Way up north in the ice and snow
    There lives a jolly little Eskimo.
    He wears a furry coat and so
    He doesn’t even shiver
    when the cold winds blow.
    The last word is spoken:
    Brrrrrrrrr!

  22. Stephanie Says:

    My father used to sing this to me growing up.
    I remember it as

    I am a gay little eskimo
    I live up north in the land of snow
    I slide down hills, build a snow fort too
    there are so many fun things to do
    I have three dogs that pull my sleigh
    a crack of the whip and away way way
    over the ice and the fields we go
    back to my home of the frozen snow.

    however I believe he also would change the last two lines to
    over the ice and the fields we flea
    back to the land of the frozen sea

  23. Linda Says:

    I grew up in RI and in the 50s my mom would sing me this song:
    Way up north in the ice and snow
    Lives a jolly little Eskimo
    He wears a furry little coat and so
    He doesn’t even shiver when the cold winds blow

    Now, over 50 years later, my two 1 year old nephews love to hear the song as we get to the Eskimo page in the Baby Beluga book by Raffi.

  24. Stephanie Says:

    Thanks so much for the responses. It’s amazing that all these years ago I searched for this song and couldn’t find it and so many people remember lyrics similar and different to the ones we grew up learning. My sisters little girl caught an Eskimo in a parade for Mardi Gras and she started singing the song so we searched for it again. This page popped up with my original request. Love it and thanks everyone for the responses.

  25. Bill Reynolds Says:

    Irving S Cook School
    Smithfield, RI
    1960-61

    A way up north in the ice and snow
    There lives a jolly little Eskimo
    He wouldn’t be you and he wouldn’t be me
    Because he’d rather be an Eskimo you see.

  26. Alice Beberman Chute Says:

    My late mother taught with my father at Nome schools after WW11. They moved away in about 1948. My mother said the little Eskimo children loved the little Eskimo song.

  27. Laree Kline Says:

    years ago I had hunted for this song online also with no luck. So I’m very grateful to see all the variations of verses here and I will put together what seems to be what I remember from grade school. The line I thought was missing until the very last comment I read was this:. He wouldn’t be you and he wouldn’t be me because he’d rather be an Eskimo, you see. I must have been around age 9 and this line struck me with the new to me thought that not all people wanted to live like the only way I knew! It seriously piqued my interest in other cultures and I later got my bachelor’s degree in sociology. :-) I think this was the last line of the song.

  28. Janelle Says:

    Hi ho, the jolly Eskimo.
    He lives in a land of ice and snow
    At times he must be cold, I know.
    Merry little jolly little Eskimo.

    He never minds the wintry blast.
    His dogs and his sleds go very fast.
    At times he must be cold, I know.
    Merry little jolly little Eskimo.

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