A Fan Once Left A Baby Named Jolene On Dolly Parton’s Doorstep: “My Momma Wants You To Have Me”

Dolly Parton country music
Dolly Parton

I can imagine that artists get some pretty weird gifts from fans.

Honestly I’ve always wondered what they do with all the random stuff that fans give them. Does it all go in the trash, or do they re-gift it? I’m sure they don’t have room in their house for EVERYTHING they get. And most importantly: What does Riley Green do with all those bras that get thrown on stage every night?

These are the things that keep me up at night. (Not really, but hey, I’m curious).

But I have a feeling that nobody can top this strange gift that a fan once left for Dolly Parton.

The country music superstar revealed that a fan once left a baby on her doorstep – and wanted Dolly to keep her.

The baby’s name was Jolene, and Dolly said she even came with a note that basically said, “I’m begging of you, please take my baby.” (Well not quite, I’ll just let Dolly tell it).

“Years ago when I first started being a big star I had fans that were fanatical. It was when “Jolene” was a big hit.

We came home one day and there was a baby in a box at our gate with a note in it. The note said, “My name is Jolene, my momma has left me here and she wants you to have me.” Of course, we all freaked out!”


Well Dolly said she immediately called the authorities to report the unexpected visitor. But she says she never knew anything else about what happened to Jolene after she was taken away:

“We immediately called Human Services and took care of the baby until they got there. We never did know or hear anything about it. I knew nothing else. What do you do in a situation like that?”

And she summed the whole thing up pretty well:

“There are some loony people in this world!”

But on the other side of the equation, there’s a woman out there who has no idea that she was once left on Dolly Parton’s doorstep. “Jolene” came out in 1973, so that baby is probably in her late 40s now, walking around totally unaware that her mom once tried to give her to Dolly Parton. Hell, she might not even know that her name was once Jolene – or at least her mom claimed her name was Jolene.

Dolly did say that she sometimes wonders what happened to Jolene – though she never tried to track her down:

“I have often wondered that. I don’t think that person would ever even know about the way that went down.

There was no way to track it and I didn’t want to. I couldn’t take the baby and I didn’t want to be involved. I wanted the police and the people involved to know we had nothing to do with it. We just made our statement.”

Here’s a pro tip: If you want to get your favorite artist’s attention, maybe just send a card next time.

A beer bottle on a dock



A beer bottle on a dock