The Story of Little Boy Blue

The Story of Little Boy Blue” gives us the importance of virtues like a good loving heart, loving and caring for one mother and father, and finally, dedication to our work

The Story of a Little Boy Blue 

little boy Blue, come blow your horn 

the Sheep in the meadow, the cows in the corn 

where is the little boy that minds the Sheep 

he’s under the haystack, fast asleep 

There once lived a poor widow who supported herself and her only son by gleaning 

in the fields, the stalks of grain had been missed by the Reapers, her little cottage was 

at the foot of a beautiful valley upon the edge of the river that wound in and out 

among the green hills, and although poor, she was contented with her lot for her home 

was pleasant, and her lovely boy was a constant delight to her; he had big blue eyes 

and fair golden curls, and he loved his good mother very dearly and was never more 

pleased than when she allowed him to help her with her work, and so the years passed 

happily away until the boy was eight years old but then the Widow fell sick, and their 

little store of money melted gradually away.

“I don’t know what we shall do for bread?!” she said, kissing her boy with tears in her eyes, “for I am not yet strong enough to work, and we have no money left,”

“But I can work,” answered the boy, “and I’m sure if I go to the Squire up at the hall, he will give me something to do”,

at first, the Widow was reluctant to consent to this since she loved to keep her child 

at her side but finally as nothing else could be done, she decided to let him go to see 

the Squire being too proud to allow her son to go to the great house in his ragged 

clothes, she made him a new suit out of a pretty blue dress she had herself worn in 

happier times, and when it was finished and the boy dressed in it, he looked as 

pretty as a prince in a fairy tale for the bright blue jacket set off his curls to good 

advantage, and the color just matched the blue of his eyes; his trousers were blue 

also, and she took the silver buckles from her own shoes and put them on his that he 

might appear the finer, and then she brushed his curls and placed his big straw 

hat upon them and sent him away with a kiss to see the Squire; it so happened that 

the great man was walking in his garden with his daughter Madge that morning and 

was feeling in a pleased mood so that when he suddenly looked up and saw a little 

boy before him, he said kindly

well, my child, what can I do for you?”,

“If you please, sir,” said the boy bravely, although he was frightened at meeting the squire face to face. “I want you to give me some work to do so I can earn money,”

“earn money,” repeated the squire “why do you wish to earn money?”,

“to buy food for my mother, sir, we are very poor, and since she is no longer able to work for me, I wish to work for her.”

“but what can you do?” asked the Squire, “you are too small to work in the fields!”

“I could earn something, sir, couldn’t I?”

his tone was so pleading that Mistress Madge was unable to resist it, and even

 the Squire was touched the young lady came forward and took the boy’s hand with 

her own and, pressing back his curls, she kissed his fear cheek

“you shall be our shepherd,” she said pleasantly, “and keep the Sheep out of the meadows and the cows from getting into the corn, you know, father” She continued turning to the Squire, “It was only yesterday you said you must get a boy to tend the Sheep, and this little boy can do it nicely,”

“very well,” replied the Squire, “it shall be as you say, and if he is attentive and watchful, he will be able to save me a good bit of trouble and so really earn his money” Then he turned to the child and said, “come to me in the morning my little man and I will give you a silver horn to blow that you may call the sheep and the cows whenever they go astray, what is your name?”

“oh, never mind his name Papa” broke in the Squire’s daughter, “I shall call him little boy blue since he is dressed in blue from head to foot, and his dress but matches his eyes, and you must give him a good wage also for surely no Squire before ever had a prettier shepherd boy than this,”

“very good,” said the Squire cheerfully as he pinched his daughter’s rosy-cheeked “Be watchful little boy blue, and you shall be well paid,”

then little boy Blue thanked them both very sweetly and ran back over the hill and into 

the valley where his home Lane nestled by the riverside to tell the good news to his 

mother, the poor Widow wept tears of joy when she heard his story and smiled when 

he told her that his name was to be little boy blue, she knew the Squire was a kind 

master and would be good to her darling son.

Early next morning, little boy Blue was at the hall, and the Squires steward gave him a 

new silver horn that glistened brightly in the sunshine and a golden cord to fasten it 

around his neck, and then he was given charge of the sheep and the cows and told

 to keep them from straying into the meadowlands and the fields of grain, 

it was not hard work but just suited to little boy Blue’s age, and he was watchful 

and vigilant and made a very good shepherd boy. Indeed his mother needed food no 

longer, for the Squire paid her son liberally and the Squire’s daughter made a favorite 

of the small Shepherd and loved to hear the call of his silver horn echoing amongst 

the hills, even the sheep and the cows were fond of him and always obeyed 

the sound of his horn.

Therefore the Squire’s corn thrived finally and was never trampled; little boy Blue was 

now very happy and his mother was proud and contented and began to improve in 

health; after a few weeks, she became strong enough to leave the cottage and walk a 

little in the fields each day, but she could not go far because her limbs were too feeble 

to support her long, so the most she could attempt was to walk as far as the style to 

meet little boy Blue as he came home from work in the evening, then she would lean 

on his shoulder and return to the cottage with him, and the little boy was very glad he 

could thus support his darling mother and assist her faltering steps.

but one day, a great misfortune came upon them since it is true that no life can be so 

happy, but that sorrow will creep into temperate, little boy blue came home word one 

evening very light of heart and whistled merrily as he walked for, he thought he should 

find his mother awaiting him at the style and a good supper spread upon the table in 

the little cottage, but when he came to the style, his mother was not in sight, and an 

answer to his call, a low moan of pain reached his ears; little boy Blue sprang over the 

stile and was found lying upon the ground, his dear mother, her face white and 

drawing, was suffering and tears of anguish running down her cheeks for she had 

slipped upon the style and fallen, and her leg was broken; little boy Blue ran to the 

cottage for water and bathed the poor woman’s face and raised her head that she 

might drink; there were no neighbors for the cottage stood all alone by the river, so the 

child was obliged to support his mother in his arms as best he could while she 

crawled painfully back to the cottage; fortunately, it was not far, and at last, she was 

safely laid upon her bed, then little boy Blue began to think about what he should

 do next

“Can I leave you alone while I go for the doctor, mama?” he asked anxiously as he held her clasped hands tightly in his two little ones his mother drew him towards her and kissed him “take the boat, dear,” she said, “and fetch the doctor from the village; I shall be patient till you return.”

little boy blue rushed away to the riverbank and unfastened the little boat, and then he 

pulled sturdily down the river until he passed the bend and came to the pretty village 

below when he had found the doctor and told of his mother’s misfortune, the good 

man promised to attend him at once, and very soon, they were seated in the boat, on 

their way back to the cottage, it was very dark by this time, but little boy blue knew 

every turn and bend in the river, and the doctor helped him pull at the oars so that, at 

last, they came to the place where the faint light twinkled through the cottage 

windows, they found the poor woman in much pain but the doctor quickly set and 

bandaged her leg and gave her some medicine to ease her suffering, it was nearly 

midnight when all was finished, and the doctor was ready to start back to the village

“take good care of your mother,” he said to the boy, “and don’t worry about her, for it is not a bad break, and the leg will men nicely in time, but she will be in bed many days, and you must nurse her as well as you were able,”

all through the night, the boy SAT by, bedside bathing his mother’s fevered brow and 

ministering to her wants and when the day broke, she was resting easily, and the pain 

had left her, and she told little boy blue he must go to his work for she said, 

“more than ever now we need the money you earn from the Squire as my misfortune will add to the expenses of living, and we have to pay the doctor, do not fear to leave me, for I shall rest quietly and sleep most of the time while you are away”,

little boy blue did not like to leave his mother all alone, but he knew of no one he could 

ask to stay with her so he placed food and water by her bedside and ate a little 

breakfast himself, and started off to tend his Sheep. The Sun was shining brightly, and 

the birds sang sweetly in the trees, and the crickets chirped just as merely as if this 

great trouble had not come to little boy blue to make him sad, but he went bravely to 

his work and for several hours, he watched the men carefully at work in the fields and 

the Squire’s daughter who said embroidering upon the porch of the great house often 

heard the sound of his horn as he called the straying Sheep to his side, but he had not 

slept the whole night, and he was tired with his long watch at his mother’s bedside, 

and  so, in spite of himself, the lashes would occasionally droop over his blue eyes for 

he  was only a child, and children feel the loss of sleep more than older people; 

still, little  boy blue had no intention of sleeping while he was on duty and bravely 

fought against the drowsiness that was creeping over him, the Sun shone very hot 

that day, and he walked to the shady side of a big haystack and sat down upon the 

ground leaning his back against the stack, the cows and sheep were quietly browsing 

near him and he watched them earnestly for a time listening to the singing of the birds 

and the gentle tinkling of the bells upon the weathers and the faraway songs of the 

Reapers that the breeze brought to his ears and before he knew it, the blue eyes had 

closed fast, and the golden head lay back upon the hay, and the little boy blue was fast 

asleep and dreaming that his mother was well again and had come to the style to 

meet him the Sheep strayed near the edge of the meadow and paused, waiting for the 

warning sound of the horn and the breeze carried the fragrance of the growing corn to 

the nostrils of the browsing cows and tempted them nearer and nearer to the 

forbidden feast, but the silver horn was silent, and before long, the cows were feeding 

upon the Squire’s pet cornfield, and the sheep were enjoying themselves amidst 

the juicy grasses of the meadows, the Squire himself was returning from a long weary 

ride over his farms, and when he came to the cornfield and saw the cows trampling 

down the grain and feeding upon the golden stocks; he was very angry

“little boy blue,” he cried “whoa, little boy blue, come blow your horn,”

but there was no reply; he wrote on away and now discovered that the sheep were deep within the meadows and that made him angrier still here, Isaac he said to a farmers lead who chance to pass by where is little

boy blue, he’s under the haystack, your honor, fast asleep, replied Isaac with a grin, for 

he had passed that way and see that the boy was lying asleep will you go and wake 

him? Ask the Squire, for he must drive out the sheep and the cows before they do 

more  damage not, I replied Isaac; if I wake him, he’ll surely cry, for he is but a baby and 

not fit  to mind the Sheep, but I myself will drive them out for you, your honor, and 

away he  ran to do so thinking that now the Squire would give him little boy blues’ 

place and make him the shepherd boy for Isaac had long coveted the position of the 

Squires’s daughter, hearing the angry tones of her father’s voice

“now came out to see what was amiss,” and when she heard that little boy Blue had 

failed in his trust, she was deeply grieved for she had loved the child for his pretty 

ways, the Squire dismounted from his horse and came to where the boy was lying 

awake, he said, shaking him by the shoulder and depart from my lands, for you 

have betrayed my trust and let the sheep and cows stray into the fields and meadows; 

little boy Blue started up at once and rubbed his eyes, and then he did as Isaac 

prophesized and began to weep bitterly for his heart was sore that he had failed in his 

duty to the good Squire and so forfeited his confidence, but the Squire’s daughter was 

moved by the child’s tears, so she took him upon her lap and comforted him asking, 

“Why did you sleep, little boy blue, when you should have watched the cows and the Sheep?”

“my mother has broken her leg,” answered the boy between his sobs,and I did not sleep all last night but SAT by her bedside nursing her, and I tried hard not to fall asleep but could not help myself, and Oh Squire, I hope you will forgive me this once for my poor mother’s sake,”

“where does your mother live?” asked the Squire in a kindly tone, for he had already forgiven little boy Blue,

“in the cottage down by the river,” answered the child, “and she is all alone, for there is no one near to help us in our trouble,”

“Come,” said the mistress match, rising to her feet and taking his hand,lead us to your home, and we will see if we cannot assist your poor mother.”

so the Squire and his daughter and little boy Blue all walked down to the little cottage 

and the Squire had a long talk with the poor Widow, and that same day, a big basket of 

dainty’s was sent to the cottage and Mistress Madge bade her own maid go to the 

Widow and nurse her carefully until she recovered so that, after all, little boy Blue did 

more for his dear mother by falling asleep then he could have he kept wide awake, for 

after his mother was well again, the Squire gave them a pretty cottage to live in very 

near the great house itself and the Squire’s daughter was ever afterward their good 

friend and saw that they wanted for no comforts of life, and little boy Blue did not fall 

asleep again at his post but watched the cows and the Sheep faithfully for many years 

until he grew up to manhood and had a farm of his own.

He always said his mother’s accident had brought him good luck, but I think he was 

rather his own loving heart and his devotion to his mother that made him friends, for 

no one is afraid to trust a boy who loves to serve and care for his mother.

The End