Woody Guthrie
Woody Guthrie's Biography

Life & Song Timeline


Woody's Song Timeline YEAR Woody's Life Timeline




Woody's father, Charley Guthrie, is born.



Woody's mother, Nora Belle Sherman, is born.



Charley Guthrie meets Nora Belle Sherman.



Charley Guthrie marries Nora Belle Sherman.



Nov. 24- Charley and Nora’s first child, Clara Edna Guthrie, is born.



Dec. 17- Charley and Nora’s second child, Roy Guthrie, is born.



The Guthrie family moves to Okemah, Oklahoma.



Woodrow Wilson nominated by the Democratic Party for President.

July 14- Charley and Nora’s third child, Woodrow Wilson Guthrie, is born.





Woodrow Wilson elected president of the US.



The Guthrie family moves into the “Old London House” on South First Street, in Okemah.



Feb.- Charley and Nora’s fourth child, George Guthrie, is born.





May- Woody's older sister, Clara Edna Guthrie, passes away from a house fire.

Oil discovered in Cromwell, 12 miles southwest of Okemah.

Charley and Nora’s fifth child, Mary Josephine Guthrie, is born.





Okemah’s population jumps to 15,000 because of the Cromwell oil.



Charley sends two of his children, George and Mary Jo, to stay with his sister Maude in Pampa, Texas.

Charley severely burned in fire. Nora Belle Guthrie hospitalized. Charley moves to Pampa, Texas to recuperate. Woody stays with Roy in Okemah, Oklahoma.





Woody lives with various families in Okemah.

Woody moves to Pampa, Texas.

Nora Belle Guthrie passes away from Huntington's disease at hospital in Norman, Oklahoma.



Woody forms his first band, The Corncob Trio, with friends Matt Jennings and Cluster Baker.



Height of the Great Depression.



Woody marries Mary Jennings.


Don't You Marry 1935

Apr. 14- Black Easter Dust Storms. Woody & Mary’s first child, Gwendolyn Gail Guthrie, is born.


Do Re Mi
Dust Bowl Blues
Dust Can’t Kill Me
Dust Pneumony
Hard Ain’t It Hard
Oklahoma Hills
Philadelphia Lawyer

Woody leaves Pampa, Texas and heads to California, the “Garden of Eden”.

July- Woody & Mary’s second child, Carolyn Sue Guthrie, is born.

Sept.- Woody & singing partner Maxine “Lefty Lou” Crissman perform for the first time on KFVD Radio.

Dec.- Woody, Mary & their kids move to Glendale, California.


Ain't Got No Home In This World Anymore
Christ For President
Dust Bowl Refugee
Gypsy Davy (circa)
Gypsy's Fortune
Sally Don't You Grieve



Jan. 22- Woody, Mary, Jeff & Allene Guthrie (Woody’s cousin), and others travel to Tia Juana, Mexico to work on XELO Radio. It doesn’t work out and they move back to California three weeks later.

June 18- Woody & Maxine “Lefty Lou” Crissman end the Woody & Lefty Show on KFVD.


Airline To Heaven
At My Window Sad And Lonely
Blowin’ Down This Road
California Stars (circa)
Grand Coulee Dam
He And She
Listening To That Wind That Blows
Mr. Tom Mooney Is Free
Old cracked Looking Glass (circa)
One By One (circa)
Orange Blossom Ring
Pretty Boy Floyd
Secrets Of The Sea
This Morning I Am Born Again
Wheel Of Life
Will Rogers Highway



Mar.- “The Grapes of Wrath” published. It sells 420,565 copies in the first year and wins both the Pulitzer and National Book Award.

May 12- The first “Woody Sez” column appears in “People’s World”.

July- Ed Robbins introduces Woody to Will Geer.

Sept. and Oct.- Woody travels with Will Geer and others to support migrant workers organizing.

Oct. 7- Woody & Mary’s third child, William Rogers Guthrie, is born.

Dirty Overhalls
Great Dust Storm
Hard Travelin'
Hey Hey Hey Hey
I Don't Feel At Home On The Bowery No More
It Takes A Married Man To Sing A Worried Song
Jesus Christ
New York Town (circa)
Nine Hundred Miles (circa)
So Long It's Been Good To Know You
This Land Is Your Land
Tom Joad
Union Maid
Unwelcomed Guest, The
Vigilante Man
Why Do You Stand There In The Rain?

Woody & Mary appear as extras in Pare Lorenz' Fight For Life documentary film.

Feb.- Woody moves to New York City , New York and stays with friends Will & Herta Geer.

Feb. 18- Will Geer introduces Woody to Alan Lomax at a benefit concert for Spanish Loyalist refugees.

Feb. 23- Woody writes "This Land Is Your Land" while living at the Hanover House, in New York City.

Mar. 3- Pete Seeger, while performing at a "Grapes of Wrath" benefit concert hears Woody perform for the first time.

Mar. 21, 22, 24- Woody records for Alan Lomax and the Library of Congress in Washington, DC .

May- Woody records "Dust Bowl Ballads" for RCA Victor.

Aug.- Woody appears on CBS Radio "Forecast" series in a pilot for a series "Back Where I Come From."

Nov.- Appears on "Cavalcade of America"

Nov.- Woody is hired by the Columbia Broadcasting System.


Ashes to Ashes Dust to Dust (circa)
Bed On The Floor
Better Go Down And Join
The Union (circa)
Biggest Thing That Man Has Ever Done (Great Historical Bum)
Blue Eyes
Columbia's Waters
Curfew Blow (circa)
Curley Headed Baby (circa)
End Of My Line
Jack Hammer Blues
Jesse James And His Boys (circa)
Ladies Auxiliary
Little Black Train (circa)
Lumber Is King
Mister Charley Lindbergh (circa)
More Pretty Gals Than One (circa)
New Found Land
Oregon Line
Out Past The End Of The Line
Pastures Of Plenty
Portland Town To Klamath
Ramblin' Reckless Hobo (circa)
Ramblin' 'Round (circa)
Roll On Columbia
Ship In The Sky
Song Of The Grand Coulee Dam
Talking Columbia/Columbia Talking Blues
Union Buryin' Ground
Washington Talkin' Blues (circa)
White Ghost Train



Jan.- Leaves New York City with Mary and their three children and head across the country.

Feb.- Woody gets a short term job back on KFVD in Los Angeles, California. Woody also begins his work on a manuscript of what will become "Bound For Glory".

Mar.- Woody performs at International Woman's Day Committee Tea.

Apr. 3- Woody performs at an Okie benefit in Los Angeles, California .

Apr. 4- Woody performs at Barn Dance, a benefit for Cannery and Agricultural Workers Union.

May 13- Woody begins his month-long Columbia River project where he earns $266.66.

July 7- Woody records with the Almanac Singers, "Deep Sea Chanties" and "Sod Buster Ballads".

July- Upon returning to New York City, Woody joins up with the Almanac Singers on a trip West. Together they perform in Detroit, Chicago, Milwaukee, Denver, and San Francisco .

Aug.- Woody appears at Asheville, North Carolina for a Folk Festival.

Dec. 7- Attack on Pearl Harbor.

Dec. 8- US enters World War II.


All You Fascists Bound To Lose
Be No Church Tonight
Better World A Coming
Dirty Overalls
East Texas Red
Gonna Be A Blackout Tonight
Great And Bloody Fight
Hard Travelin'
Sinking Of The Reuben James
Sixty-Six Highway Blues
So Long It's Been Good To Know You



Jan.- Woody records home discs with Almanacs in New York City .

Jan.- Woody meets Marjorie Mazia Greenblatt at Almanac House, while rehearsing for "Folksay" choreographed by Sophie Maslow.

July- RCA rejects Woody's proposal to record his war songs.

Dead Or Alive
Dig a Hole (circa)
Jackhammer John
Jesus Christ
Talkin Subway Blues
Talkin' Sailor (Aka Talkin' Merchant Marine)
Talking Fishing Blues (circa)
Union Feelin (circa)
When The Yanks Go Marching In
You Better Get Ready (circa)



Feb.- Woody and Marjorie Guthrie's first child, Cathy Ann Guthrie, is born.

Mar.- Bound For Glory published.

June 5- Woody ships out with the Merchant Marines with buddies Cisco Houston and Vincent "Jimmy" Longhi. Woody, Marjorie & Cathy move to 3520 Mermaid Avenue, Coney Island in Brooklyn, New York.

1913 Massacre (circa)
All You Fascists
Been Out On An Ocean Trip
Biggest Thing
Born To Win
Build Me A World
Harriet Tubman
I Gotta Go Down
Ninety Mile Wind
Ranger's Command (circa)
Remember The Mountain Bed



Apr. 16, 19, 20, 24, 25- Woody records for Moe Asch.

Apr. 19- Recording session with Cisco Houston, where they record 57 songs.

Oct.- Woody performs in Chicago with the FDR Bandwagon. Woody records his album "Struggle" for Asch Records.

Belle Starr (circa)
Birds and Ships (circa)
Black Wind Blowing (circa)
Buffalo Skinners
Dying Miner
Gonna Get Through This World
I Like To Stay Home With Daddy
I'm Shipping Up To Boston (circa)
It's A Wrinkled, Crumpled, Rumpled Look (circa)
Ludlow Massacre
Meanest Man
Miner's Kids And Wives
Roll On Little Ocean
Talking Meaness
Union Train



Mar.- Woody records for Moe Asch.

Mar. 10- Woody attends an all-day conference on Folklore in a Democracy with Ben Botkin, Herbert Haufrecht, Richard Dyer-Bennet, Charles Seeger, and Sonny Terry at Elizabeth Irwin High School.

May 8- Woody is inducted into the Army.

Dec. 21- Woody is discharged from the Army.

All Work Together
Blinding Of Isaac Woodward
Bugeye Jim
Build My House
Cadillac Eight
Don't You Push Me Down (circa)
Hoodoo Voodoo
How Joo Do?
Jigalong Home
Just One More Time
Little Curly Head
Little Sacka Sugar
Mail Myself To You
Me Yellow Crayon
My Little Seed
My Rolling Ocean
Needle Song
Pick It Up
Race You Down The Mountain
Revolutionary Mind
Sleep Eye
Sleepy Eyes
Swimmy Swim Swim
Walt Whitmans Neice
Way Over Yonder In The Minor Key


1946 Songs To Grow On For Mother and Child is released.

Against Th' Law
Blubber My Gum
Dance Around My Atom Fire
Goodnight Little Arlo
Little Bird
My New York City
Talking Miner
Ticky Tock
Woman At Home (circa)



Feb.- Cathy Guthrie passes awat from an electrical fire.

July 10- Woody and Marjorie's second child, Arlo Guthrie, is born.

Come See
Dear Mrs. Roosevelt
Farmer-Labor Train
Feed Of Man (circa)
Grassy Grow
Ilsa Koch
I've Got To Know
Los Gatos Plane Wreck
Make A Blubble
My Dolly
Put Your Finger In The Air
Riding In My Car
Someday Some Morning Sometime
Tea Bag Blues
Tip Tap Toe



June to Nov.- Woody and Cisco sing for the Wallace campaign.

Dec. 25- Woody and Marjorie's third child, Joady Guthrie, is born.

Baltimore To Washington
Come When I Call You
Eisler On The Go
Fastest Of Ponies
Hannuka's Flame
Hanuka Bell
Hanuka Dance
Hanuka Gelt
Hanuka Time
Hanuka Tree
Headdy Down
Hezitatin' Beauty
Hour Cometh, The
Joe Dimaggio Done It Again
Many & The Few, The
Mother Sing Again
Veedee Blues
Warden Of The Skies



Dance A Little Longer
Every 100 Years (circa)
God And Joseph
I Was Born
Ingrid Bergman
Mermaid's Avenue
My Flying Saucer
Another Man's Done Gone



Jan. 2- Woody and Marjorie's fourth child, Nora Guthrie, is born.

Feb.- Woody enrolls in classes at Brooklyn College. He takes courses in Philosophy, English, Spanish, and classical civilization. The Weavers (Ronnie Gilbert, Lee Hays, Fred Hellerman, & Pete Seeger) record Woody's "So Long It's Been Good To Know Yuh".

Been Down The River Too Long
Heaven My Home



Circle Of Truth
Down In Oklayhoma (circa)
Down This River Too Long
Love Thyself
My Peace


1952 Woody moves to Topanga Canyon, California and meets Anneke Van Kirk.

Jinga Linnng


1953 Woody marries Anneke Van Kirk. Woody and Anneke have a daughter named Lorina Lynn.

Your Sandal String


1954 Woody checks himself into Brooklyn State Hospital.

Bizzness Ain't Dead
Blood Of My Lamb
God's Promise
Pass Away
Take It Easy


1955 Woody and Anneke's marriage is disolved.

Woody's father, Charley Guthrie, dies. Woody is officially diagnosed with Huntington's Disease.

Mar. 17- Benefit concert at Pythian Hall to raise money for Woody's children, this concert helps spark the folk revival.

May- Woody voluntarily checks out of Brooklyn State Hospital. Woody hospitalized at Greystone Hospital, New Jersey.



Bob and Sidsel Gleason have Woody visit their home on Sunday's for a hootenanny with friends.



Bob Dylan visits Woody's home in Queens, NY and is brought to visit Woody in the hospital.

April- Woody is transfered to Brooklyn State Hospital, Brooklyn, NY.



Born To Win is published.



Woody receives the Conservation Service Award from The U.S. Department of the Interior.

July- Woody is transfered to Creedmore State Hospital, Queens, NY.



Oct. 3- Woody Guthrie passes away from Huntington's Disease at Creedmore State Hospital, Queens, NY.