Alias for author Walter Roland. Also as Red Cross Blues #2 on guitar. About the desastrous situation following the flood of 1927 in the Mississippi Delta. Thousands of homeless black laborers were corraled on top of Indian burial mounds or levees at gunpoint so that Delta landowners would not lose their man power. If the Red Cross wouldn't have reacted as they did, no one would have known nor cared. That's when world attention was first drawn to the Delta, not by the blues. President Hoover was not impressed. Red Cross supplies (including tents and beds) were seized by the planters and sold instead of distributed.
Lucille Bogan [with composer Walter Roland on piano as Red Cross Blues #2]
Bessie Jackson [alias Lucille Bogan]
Lead Belly [as Red Cross Store; Lomax recording]
Mississippi Fred McDowell [as Red Cross Store Blues]
Koerner, Ray & Glover [as Red Cross Store]
Boogie Bill Webb [idem]
Welfare Store Blues (Lead Belly, Sonny Terry and Sonny Boy Williamson) and Welfare Blues (Speckled Red) use the same melody.