Lena Guilbert Ford

Lena Guilbert Brown Ford, middle name sometimes listed as Gilbert, (1870 – March 7, 1918) was a lyricist, best known for "Keep the Home Fires Burning" which she wrote during the First World War.

She was born Lena Guilbert Brown in Venango County, Pennsylvania and attended Elmira College, graduating in 1887. She married physician Harry Hale Ford and settled in Elmira, later divorcing him and relocating, with her mother and son, to London, England, where they would remain for twenty years. During World War I, Ford opened her home to soldiers and took care of them.

While in Britain she met Ivor Novello, with whom she collaborated to produce "Keep the Home Fires Burning" in 1914. It was the first major success for Novello and the only one for Ford. Among Ford's other published musical works are "When God Gave You to Me", "We Are Coming, Mother England", and "God Guard You" (with Westell Gordon).

Ford and her thirty-year-old son Walter were the first United States citizens to become fatalities of a German air raid on London, their home being hit by one of eighteen bombs that fell on the city on the night of 7/8 March 1918. Mrs. Brown, Ford's mother, was only hurt in the bombing. Their remains were returned to and interred in the United States.

Birth and Death Data: Born 1870 (United States of America)

Date Range of DAHR Recordings: 1915 - 1922

Roles Represented in DAHR: lyricist

Recordings

Company Matrix No. Size First Recording Date Title Primary Performer Description Role Audio
Victor B-16626 10-in. 10/8/1915 Keep the home-fires burning till the boys come home Frederick J. Wheeler Male vocal solo, with drum and orchestra lyricist  
Victor B-20017 10-in. 6/7/1917 Keep the home-fires burning ('Til the boys come home) John McCormack Tenor vocal solo, with orchestra lyricist  
Victor B-22087 10-in. 8/12/1918 Camp songs medley, part 2 National Camps Song Leaders Vocal chorus, with cornet and piano lyricist  
Victor B-22416 10-in. 11/13/1918 Až se vrátís zaš František A. Pangrác Male vocal solo, with orchestra lyricist  
Columbia 46135 10-in. 10/21/1915 Keep the home fires burning till the boys come home Reed Miller ; Frederick J. Wheeler Male vocal duet, with orchestra lyricist  
Columbia 77409 10-in. 10/4/1917 War song hits Columbia Quartette Male vocal quartet, with orchestra lyricist  
Columbia 48820 12-in. 6/14/1916 Keep the home fires burning Maggie Teyte Female vocal solo, with orchestra lyricist  
Columbia 49300 12-in. 1/23/1918 Keep the home fires burning Columbia Stellar Quartette ; Oscar Seagle Baritone vocal solo and male vocal quartet, with orchestra lyricist  
Columbia 49585 12-in. 1/31/1919 Keep the home fires burning (till the boys come home) Columbia Stellar Quartette ; Rosa Ponselle Soprano vocal solo and male vocal quartet, with orchestra lyricist  
OKeh 128 10-in. ca. May 1918 Keep the home fires burning Joseph A. Phillips Male vocal solo, with orchestra lyricist  
Brunswick 919 10-in. approximately mid-1917 Keep the home fires burning Joseph A. Phillips Male vocal solo, with orchestra lyricist  
Edison 4170 10-in. 10/5/1915 Keep the home fires burning Frederick J. Wheeler Baritone vocal solo and vocal ensemble, with orchestra lyricist  
Edison 5951 10-in. between 1/1/1918 and 1/7/1918 Keep the home fires burning (Till the boys come home) Christine Miller Female vocal solo, with orchestra lyricist  
Edison 6227 10-in. between 6/13/1918 and 6/14/1918 Keep the home-fires burning Ida Gardner Contralto vocal solo and mixed vocal ensemble, with orchestra lyricist  
Edison 6309 10-in. between 8/4/1918 and 8/12/1918 Keep the home fires burning Homestead Trio Female vocal trio, with orchestra lyricist  
Edison 6368 10-in. 9/18/1918 Keep the home fires burning Carolina Lazzari Contralto vocal solo, with orchestra lyricist  

Citation

Discography of American Historical Recordings, s.v. "Ford, Lena Guilbert," accessed September 18, 2020, https://adp.library.ucsb.edu/names/111713.

Ford, Lena Guilbert. (2020). In Discography of American Historical Recordings. Retrieved September 18, 2020, from https://adp.library.ucsb.edu/names/111713.

"Ford, Lena Guilbert." Discography of American Historical Recordings. UC Santa Barbara Library, 2020. Web. 18 September 2020.

DAHR Persistent Identifier

URI: https://adp.library.ucsb.edu/names/111713

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