As Reinhard documents, this song is based on a true story and can consequently be dated with unusual precision: the Saturday in question was the 11th of January 1834.
Beyond that I can’t tell you much about the song, except to say that it shows a very striking combination of impersonality and aching grief. (Singer-songwriters take note: sad things have happened to you, but something sadder has almost certainly happened to someone else. You’re alive, for one thing.) I first heard it on the Woodbine and Ivy Band’s CD (reviewed here); Olivia Chaney’s rendition is one of the highlights of the album. My accompaniment is one of the more fiddly concertina arrangements I’ve come up with so far, supplemented with a bit of double-tracked zither.