"Oh, Susanna"
Song published by Steven Foster (1826-1864) in 1848, and sometimes associated with the California Gold Rush of that year. Will and Jim probably pick it simply because it is a very upbeat and happy tune that they hope will drive the mournful music of the carnival calliope out of their heads, but there is an ironically paradoxical lyric in the original song that might remind one of the carnival: “It rained all night the day I left, the weather it was dry/The sun so hot I froze to death; Susanna don’t you cry.” The boys have just taken their leave of a weeping Miss Foley, who will have a lot more to cry about in chapter 32. It is also the third of the songs Mr. Halloway and Will employ to save Jim in chapter 54.