This Little Light of Mine, the Song and the Story

Composer Harry Dixon Loes Writes This Little Light of Mine



Let His Light Shine with Watercolor Sun
Taking his theme from Matthew 5:16, Harry Dixon Loes (1895-1965) composed the children's song This Little Light of Mine in 1920. The song has since been sung, often with hand motions, by many children in Sunday Schools throughout the U.S. and Canada.

The song also found its way into the Civil Rights movement of the 1950s and 1960s when Fannie Lou Hammer added it to her spiritual song repertoire, along with other songs such as Go Tell it on the Mountain, and We Shall Overcome.

Since Loes first introduced the song, there have been many verses added for various reasons and occasions. Listed below is the original and some of the more common additional verses:

This Little Light of Mine

This little light o' mine, I'm goin' let it shine,
This little light o' mine, I'm goin' let it shine,
This little light o' mine, I'm goin' let it shine,
Let it shine, let it shine, let it shine.

Won't let Satan blow it out, I'm goin' let it shine,
Won't let Satan blow it out, I'm goin' let it shine,
Won't let Satan blow it out, I'm goin' let it shine,
Let it shine, let it shine, let it shine.

Hide it under a bushel, oh no! I'm goin' let it shine,
Hide it under a bushel, oh no! I'm goin'let it shine,
Hide it under a bushel, oh no! I'm goin' let it shine,
Let it shine, let it shine, let it shine.

Everywhere I go, I'm goin' let it shine,
Everywhere I go, I'm goin' let it shine,
Everywhere I go, I'm goin' let it shine,
Let it shine, let it shine, let it shine.

Shine all over (insert your city here)
Shine all over (insert your city here)
Shine all over (insert your city here)
Let it shine, let it shine, let it shine.

Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven.” (Matthew 5:16)

Written by: Connie Ruth Christiansen

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