The Delta Blues at Dockery Farms

These musicians, who lived on and around Dockery Farms in the late 19th and early 20th centuries, invented a new style of singing and playing guitar. At Dockery Farms, they sang, played, and wrote the haunting songs that influenced music from jazz to rock & roll.

Soulful, fiery and heartfelt, the delta blues began a tradition of a uniquely American style of music.

Henry Sloan

1870-?

This mysterious forefather and likely founder of the delta blues taught Charley Patton everything he knew.

Charley Patton

1891–1934

Father of the delta blues, teacher and influencer to the generation that brought the blues to mainstream America.

Son House

1902–1988

Proponent of the hollerin’ and moanin’ school of blues, Eddie “Son” House played alongside Charley on his 1930 records.

Robert Johnson

1911–1938

Legend has it that the most famous of the blues players sold his soul in exchange for his talent at Dockery Farms.

Howlin’ Wolf

1910–1976

Learned to play and entertain from Patton himself and went on to record Patton’s Saddle My Pony in 1959.

Pops Staples

1914–2000

Roebuck “Pops” Staples carried Patton’s legacy from the Mississippi lowlands to the stockyards of Chicago.

Honeyboy Edwards

1915–2011

A student of Patton’s and a colleague of Johnson, Edwards was the source of many first-hand accounts of the blues.

From Dylan, the Stones, Clapton, and Led Zeppelin, to the White Stripes, the Delta Blues have left their mark.