Ballads & Songs of Southern Michigan-songbook

A Collection of 200+ traditional songs & variations with commentaries including Lyrics & Sheet music

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336         Ballads and Songs of Michigan
2 My character was taken,.....
.....the judge he wrote it down,
The jury proved me guilty; I was bound for Charlestown,
3    To see my aged father a-plcading at the bar, To see my aged mother a-tearing out her hair, A-tearing out her old gray locks as the tears came rolling
down, Saying, "Son, dear son, what have you done? You're bound for Charlestown "
4    I was shipped aboard an east-bound train one cold December
day, And every station I went by you hear the people say, "There goes the Boston burglar bound down in iron strong. For the robbery of the Waterloo bank he's bound for Charles­town."
5    Now you who have your liberty, pray keep it while you can, And don't you go a-walking the streets, a-breakmg the laws
of man; For if you do, you'll surely rue, you'll find yourself like me Serving out your twenty-one years in the penitentiary.
Sung in 1935 by Mr. Fred Buckingham, West Branch, who learned the song in a lumber camp at St. Helens, Michigan.
A six-stanza text similar to A, but including a stanza concerning the "girl in Boston"; the crime is indefinite—"some great crime or other."
Communicated in 1931 by Miss Kathryn Bowman, Detroit, who obtained the song from her aunt, Mrs. Peter Miller, West Branch.
A six-stanza text similar to A, except that mere is no mention made of Charlestown and that stanza 4, following, is localized:
4 I was put aboard a western train that cold December day, And every station that we passed Fd hear the people say, "There goes that Chicago burglar to State's prison, you bet; For some crime or another he is off to Joliet"

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