Down in the Valley, also known as "Birmingham Jail", is a traditional American folk song. It has been recorded by many artists and is included in the Songs of Expanding America recordings in Burl Ives' six-album set "Historical America in Song.
The verses mentioning "Birmingham Jail" refer to the Birmingham, Alabama, City Jail which was well-known in the mid-1920s, although the reference was often omitted in later versions. Guitarist Jimmie Tarlton claimed to have written the lyrics in 1925 while he was jailed in Birmingham for moonshining. It was first recorded by Tarlton and his partner Tom Darby on November 10, 1927 in Atlanta, Georgia for Columbia Records. According to one biographer of the folk musician Lead Belly, he performed it for Texas Governor Pat Neff at the Sugarland Penitentiary in 1924.