I am a reckless highwayman, Cole Younger is my name,
An' many a desperation has caused my friends much shame;
For the robbin' of the Northfield bank, my friends, I cain't deny,
For which I am a poor pris'ner now, In the Stillwater jail I lie.
Of all my darin' bold robberies a story to you I'll tell,
Of a California miner on whom my eyes befell,
I robbed him of his money an' told him to go his way
For which I will be sorry of until my dyin'day.
An' then we started for Texas, where brother Bob did say,
That on fast horses we must ride in revenge of our father's day
On them fast horses we did go to try to win the prize,
An', we'll fight them anti-guerillas until our dyin' day.
An' the next we surprised was the Union Pacific train,
The crimes we done that bloody day brings tears into my eyes,
The engineer an' fireman killed, the conductor escaped alive,
An'now their bodies lie moulderin' beneath the Nebraska skies
Then again we started for Texas, that good old Lone Star state;
A-crossin'the Nebraska prairies the James boys we did meet,
With guns an' knives an' revolvers we all sat down to play,
While drinkin' a lot of bad whiskey to pass the time away.
An' again we saddled our horses back up north for to go,
To that God-forsaken country that they call Minnesoto,
I had my eye oni the Northfield Bank when brother Bob did say,
Oh Cole, if you undertake that job you sure will rue the day.
Although we stationed our pickets an' up to the bank did go,
It was there behind the counter, boys, I struck my fatal blonv
Then hand us out your money, an' give us no delay,
For we are the noted Younger Boys an'have no time to play.
An' while the cashier was ponderin', I heard poor Jesse say,
It's gettin' pretty warm out here, we'd better be gettin' away.
From Ozark Folk Songs, Randolph
Collected from Mrs. Ethel Rodney, MO 1927