George Foster Peabody, ca. 1907. Pach Brothers, New York, photographer. Biographical File. Prints and Photographs Division, Library of Congress
R. Nathaniel Dett dedicated Don't Be Weary, Traveler to philanthropist and arts patron George Foster Peabody. It was published by the John Church Company, "The House Devoted to the Progress of American Music." The publisher included it in a series titled "Negro Spirituals. Folk Songs of the South, Adaptations of Original Melodies by R. Nathaniel Dett." The publication was issued in 1921, just one year after Dett's piece won the $100 Francis Boott Prize at Harvard University. The composer's serious intent is evident in the work's subtitle: "Motet, On a Negro Folk Song Motif."