Ballads and Songs of Indiana - online book

A collection of 100 traditional folk songs with commentaries, historical info, lyrics & sheet music

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224 Indiana University Publications, Folklore Series
5. And you that have your liberty, pray keep it while you can ; And never, 0 never, in all your life, do break the laws of man. For if you do, you'll surely rue and then you'll be like me, A-serving out a term in the penitentiary.
"The Boston Burglar." Contributed by Dr. Claude Lomax, of Dale, Indiana. Spencer County. No source given. April 11, 1936.
1.     I was born in Boston, a city we all know well,
Brought up by honest parents, the truth to you I'll tell; Brought up by honest parents and raised most tenderly Till I became a sporting man at the age of twenty-three.
2.     My character wras taken and I was sent to jail;
My friends found it was in vain to get me out on bail. The jury found me guilty, the clerk he wrote it down; The judge then passed my sentence; I was sent to Charles-town.
3.     See my aged father, standing at the bar, Likewise my poor old mother, a-tearing of her hair,
Yes, tearing of her old gray locks while tears came pouring
down, Saying, "Son, dear son, wThat have you done that you're sent
to Charlestown ?"
4.     I was put on board an eastern train one cold December day; At every station that we passed I'd hear the people say,
"There goes the Boston Burglar; in strong chains he's bound; For some crime or another he is going to Charlestown."
5.     There is a girl in Boston, a girl that I love well ;
And when I get my freedom, along with her I'll dwell. And when I get my freedom, bad company I'll shun, Likewise prowling, gambling, and also drinking rum.
6.     All you who have your freedom, pray keep it if you can, And don't go 'round the streets at night to break the laws
of man; For if you do, you'll surely rue, and find yourself like me, Serving out full twenty years in the penitentiary.

E-Book - An Annotated Compendium of Old Time American Songs by James Alverson III