Union Maid is a union song written by Woody Guthrie in response to a request for a union song from a female point of view. Along with Talking Union, this song was one of the many pro-union songs written by Guthrie during his time as a member of the Almanac Singers. Another member, Pete Seeger writes, “I'm proud to say I was present when “Union Maid” was written in June, 1940, in the plain little office of the Oklahoma City Communist Party. Bob Woods, local organizer, had asked Woody Guthrie and me to sing there the night before for a small group of striking oil workers. Early next morning, Woody got to the typewriter and hammered out the first two verses of ‘Union Maid’ set to a European tune that Robert Schumann arranged for piano (“The Merry Farmer”) back in the early 1800s. Of course, it's the chorus that really makes it - its tune, “Red Wing,” was copyrighted early in the 1907 by Kerry Mills.
The song's final verse, on women's role in unions was written later by Lampell and other Almanac members. It implores ladies to marry a 'Union Man' and be a good 'Union Wife'. In performance, this verse has been adapted over the years for political correctness or dropped altogether.