My Sweetheart Went Down With the Maine
Once I had a sweetheart, noble, brave and true,
Fearless as the sunrise, gentle as the dew,
We had loved and waited, he had named the day,
We were pledged to wed each other in the month of May.
Out on the high seas he sailed,
Under the red, white and blue,
Faithful to country and home,
Faithful to Captain and crew.
Anchored at Havana, on the Cuban shore,
Conscious of no danger, dreaming love-days o'er,
Peacefully he slumbered in his hammock bed
While the stars in glorious beauty benediction said.
Then came the death-dealing crash
Wrecking the vessel in twain,
Down went my sweetheart to death,
Down went the gallant ship Maine.
Buried in a foreign land, in an unknown grave,
Which the bells of liberty soon must ring to save,
Peacefully he slumbers still, beneath the torrid sun,
But through all time 'twill bleed for him, this heart
that he had won
Rouse ye, my countrymen, rouse,
Let not his death be in vain,
Strike down the cowardly fiends
Who slaughtered the crew of the Maine.
From Ozark Folk Songs, Randolph
Collected from Mrs. Lulu Ferris, Joplin, Mo., May 2, 1924.
Note: The Maine was a US battleship, sunk in Havana harbor Feb.
15, 1898. 267 lives were lost. RG