Eastbound SouthernCrossin' th' Dawg
                                 ...where Th' Southern Cross th' Dawg

  Handy's Epiphany

In 1903, W. C. Handy was waiting for a train in the depot at Tutwiler, Mississippi. Dozing on the bench, he was awakened by "a lean, loose-jointed Negro" playing guitar, using a knife for a slide and singing, "...Going where the Southern cross the Dog" over and over again. Handy said that it was "the wierdest music I'd ever heard." This is the first time known that a trained musician witnessed a performance of the blues. The "Southern" and the "Dog" are believed to be references to the Southern Railroad and the Yazoo and Mississippi Valley Railroad, the latter also known as the Yazoo Delta Railroad. The initials "Y.D." are perhaps the source of yet another nickname for that line, the "Yellow Dog Line." This crossing actually exists in Moorhead, Mississippi although the Yellow Dog is now abandoned. The current crossing has been moved south some thirty feet from the days when the Yellow Dog was still active, where the Yellow Dog rails have been cut to allow the Southern rails to pass through. But, the old railroad intersection is still in place on the rusting Yellow Dog line. In 1914, Handy composed The Yellow Dog Rag which he later renamed Yellow Dog Blues.
This IS Where The Southern Cross the Dog. This view is looking south on the Yellowdog, the old crossing in the foreground and the new one in the background.
Looking west; crossing with the old water tower in background.
Looking north on the Yellow Dog Line, Yellow Dog depot and new tower in background.
The Yellow Dog depot
A Moorhead Juke
Music: Mississippi John Hurt
Spike Driver Blues