Archive for the ‘Poverty’ Category

Seven Cent Cotton Forty Cent Meat

Seven cent cotton forty sent meat
How in the world can a poor man eat
Pray for the sunshine cause it will rain
Things getting worse drivin all insane
Built a nice barn painted it brown
Lightening came along and burnt it down
No use talkin any man’s beat with
Seven cent cotton and forty cent meat
Seven cent cotton a carload of tax
The loads too heavy for our poor backs
We got a set of farmers we all know well
But there’s something wrong sure as hell
We all work hard we groan and sweat
Now we plum ruined and a blowed up set
No use talkin any mans beat with
Seven cent cotton and forty cent meat

No corn in the cob no chicks in the yard
No meat in the smokehouse no tubs full of lard
No cream in the pitcher no honey in the mug
No butter on the table and no lasses in the jug
Things to eat are always high
Everyone is selling no one will buy
We quit kickin the faults not our own
We just can’t reap where we have sown
Seven cent cotton and forty cent meat
keep gettin thinner cause we don’t eat
Tried to raise peas tried to raise beans
All we can raise is turnip greens
Folks always sick paw mus cough
Aint had no sugar since Ma dropped off
No use talkin any man’s beat with
Seven cent cotton and forty cent meat

Seven cent cotton and forty cent meat
How in the world can a poor man eat
Flour up high cotton down low
how in the world can we raise the dough
Our clothes worn our shoes run down
Old slouch had with a hole in the crown
Back nearly broken Fingers all wore
Cotton goin down to rise no more
Seven cent cotton and forty cent meat
Feels like a chain is on our feet
poor gettin poorer all around here
Kids coming regular every year
Plant corn was a wet year
Plant wheat and it turned a corn year
No use talkin any man’s beat with
Seven cent cotton and forty cent meat

Seven cent cotton and forty cent meat
Who in the devil has got a chance
We cant buy clothes we cant buy meat
Got too much cotton not enough to eat
Can’t help each other what shall we do
I can’t solve the problem so its up to you
Seven cent cotton and forty cent hose
Guess we will have to do with out our clothes
Seven cent cotton and forty cent meat
how in the world can a poor man eat
Mules in the barn and crops laid by
The [cubo] plum empty and the cows gone dry
Well waters low nearly out of sight
Can’t take a bath on a Saturday night
No use talkin any mans beat with
11 cent cotton and 40 c meat


May I Sleep In Your Barn

The night it was dark and twas raning
When along came a tramp in the rain
He was making his way to some station
To catch out a long distance train

May I sleep in your barn tonight mister
It is cold lying out on the ground
and the cold north wind it is whistling
And I have no place to lie down

I have no tobacco nor matches
And Im sure that I’ll do you no harm
I will tell you my story kind mister
For it runs through my heart like a storm

It was three years ago last summer
I shall never forget that sad day
When a stranger came out from the city
And said that he wanted to stay

One day as I came home from my workshop
I was whistling and singing with joy
I expected a kind hearted welcome
From my sweet loving wife and my boy

But what should I find but a letter
It was placed in the room on the stand
And the moment my eyes fell upon it
I picked it right up in my hand

And this note said my wife and the strange
Had left and had taken my son
Oh I wonder if God up in Heaven
Only knows what that stranger has done

I Had But Fifty Cents

I took my girl to a fancy ball,
It was a social hop
But we stayed until the folks went out
And the music it did stop
Then to a restaurant we went
The best one in the street
She said she wasn’t hungry
But this is what she ate
A dozen raw, a plate of slaw
A chicken and a roast
Some sparrow grass and apple sauce
And soft shelled crabs on toast
A big hot stew and crackers too
Her appetite was immence
When she called for pie I thought I’d die
For I had but fifty cents

She said she wasn’t hungry
She didn’t care to eat
Now Ive got money in my clothes
To feed she can’t be beat
She took it in so cosy
She had an awful tank
She said she wasnt thristy
But this is what she drank
A whiskey shin, a glass of gin
It made me shake with fear
Some ginger pop, with rum on top
A schooner than of beer
A glass of ale, a gin cocktail
She aught to have more sense
When she called for more I fell on the floor
For I had but fifty cents

You bet I wasnt hungry
I didn’t care to eat
Expecting every moment
To be kicked out in the street
She said she’d bring her family round
Some day and we’re have fun
Then I gave the man the fifty cents
And this is what he done
He tore my clothes he smashed my nose
He hit me in the jaw
He gave me a prize of a pair of black eyes
And with me swept the floor
He took me where my clothes hung loose
And threw me over a fence
Take my advice don’t try twice
When youve got but fifty cents

Poor Little Joe

While strolling one night through New Yorks gay throng
I met a poor boy who was singing a song
And although he was smiling he wanted for bread
And although he was singing he wished himself dead
I spoke to this poor boy out in the snow
He had no place to shelter him no where to go
No Mother to guide him in the grave she is low
Lost on the cold street was poor little Joe

Cold blew the blast down came the snow
He had no place to shelter him no where to go
No MOther to guide him in the grave she was low
Died on the cold street did poor little Joe

A carriage passed by with a lady inside
I looked on poor Joes face and saw that he cried
He followed the carriage she not even smilied
but fondly caressing her own darling child
I looked on this wail and I thought it was odd
If this poor ragged urchin forgotten by God
And I saw by the firelight that shone in the snow
The pale deathly features of poor little Joe

The lights had gone out and the clock had struck one
Along came a policeman whos duty was done
I could tell by the sound of his duty heavy feet
You’d think he was sinking the grave of the deep
Oh what is this the policeman said
It was poor little Joe on the ground he was dead
With his face turned to heaven all covered with snow
Died on the cold street did poor little Joe

The Irishman’s Shanty

Did ye’s ever go into an Irishman’s shanty
Oh boys that’s the place where whiskey is plenty
Wid his pipe in his mouth there sits Paddy so free
No king in his palace is prouder than he

There’s a three-legged stool wid a table to match
And the door of the shanty is locked wid a latch
There’s a note feather mattress all bustin wid straw
For the want of a bed stead it lies on the floor

There’s a smug little bureau with out paint or gilt
Made of boards that were left when the shanty was built
There’s a three-cornered mirror that hangs on the wall
But ne’re a face has been in it at all

He has a pig in the sty and a cow in the stable
And he feeds them on scraps that is left from the table
They’d starve if confined so they roam at their ease [aiase]
And cam into the shanty whenever they plaise

He has three rooms in one kitchen bedroom and hall
And his [chist] it is three wooden pegs on the wall
Two suits of old clothes make his wardrobe complete
One to wear in the shanty the same on the street

There is one who partakes of his sorrows and joys
Attends to the shanty the girls and the boys
The kids he thinks more of their gold thats refined
But Biddy’s the jewel that’s set in his mind

The Lane County Bachelor

My name is Frank Bale an old bachelor I am
I’m keeping old batch on an elegant plan
You’ll find me out West in the county of Lane
Starving to death on a Government claim

My house it is build of the national sail
The walls are erected according to Hayle
The roof has no leak but is level and plain
And I always get wet when it happens to rain

But Hurrah! for Lane County teh land of the free
Home of the grasshopper bed bug and flee
I’ll sing loud her praises and boast of her fame
While starving to death on a Government claim

How happy am I when I crawl into bed
And a rattlesnake rattles his tail at my head
And the gay little centipide foil of all fear
Crawls over my pillow and into my ear

And the nice little building so cheerful and bright
Keeps me up scratching full half of the night
And the gay little flee with toes sharp as a tack
Plays why don’t you catch me all over my back

But Hurrah for Lane County the land of the West
Where the farmers and ranchers are always at rest
Where youve nothing to do but sweetly remain
And starve like a man on your government claim

Will The Angels Play Their Harp For Me

picture-075I was passing by a churchyard near the city
When I saw a beggar man both old and grey
with his hand outreached he meekly asked for pitty
I paused a while and this I heard him say

Oh I wonder, yes I wonder
Will the angel way up younder
Will the angels play their harps for me
Oh my life is growing dreary
And My way is getting weary
Will the angels play their harps for me

O A million miles Ive travelled
And a million nights Ive seen
And Im ready for the glory soon to be
But I wonder yes I wonder
Will the angels way up yonder
Will the angels play their harps for me

Drunkard’s Dream

I dreamed of the judgement one morning
I dreamed that the trumpets had blown
I dreamed that the nations had gathered
To be juded before the white throne

I dreamed of a bright shining angel
That stood over land and o’er sea
And declared with his hands raised towards Heaven
That the time no longer should be

The drunkard was there and the gambler
And teh man who sold him teh drink
And the man who sold him the licence
Together in Hell they must sink

The rich man was there but his money
Had all vanished and faded away
The poor man was there in his judgement
But his debts were to heavy to pay

And oh for the weeeping and wailing
When the last were told of their fate
They cried to the rocks and the mountains
They prayed but their prayers were to late

The drunkard was there and the gambler
And the man who sold him the drink
And the man who crucified Jesus
Together in Hell they did sink

The Wild And Wreckless Hobo

Im a wild and wreckless hobo I left my happy home
I started out on a westbound trip all by myself alone
If there is no mallice on this trip I’ll surely see some fun
Ten thousand miles away from home and I am but a bum

Standing on a platform sucking a cheap cigar
Waiting for an old freight train to catch an empty car
My pocket book was empty my heart was filled with pain
A thousand miles away from home a waiting for a train

Kind Miss oh kind Miss would you give me a bite
A little piece of pork and bread and a little piece of meat
She put her arms around my neck says I love you as a friend
Im afraid that if I feed you this time you’ll be on the bum again

Kind Miss oh kind Miss what makes you talk so rough
You need not think that Im a hobo because I look so tough
She took me in the kitchen she treated me nice and kind
She asked me in the notion boys of loving all the time

I walked out of the hotel strolling over town
Just then I heard a double headded blow I knew she’s western bound
I walked down the railroad but in a railroad shop
I heard the agent tell a man this train she would not stop

I pulled my cap down o-re myears went strolling down the track
I caught the back of an old freight train and never did look back
I got off at arckinsaw got stuck on an Arckinsaw girl
You bet your life shes out of site for she wore that Arkinsaw curl

I’m going with the hobo’s to a land thats fair and bright
Im going where the hobo’s don’t sleep outdoors at night
Where the hand-offs grow on bushes and the people dont wear socks
And the whiskey comes a flowing through the cravices in the rocks

Cowboy Yodel

Im just a yodelling cowboy
As happy as I can be
In any old depot or old stock yards
Is have no cares like millionaires
No greifs to make me blue
I go my way from day to day
And paddle my own canoe

I left out all my troubles
Cause really it don’t pay
I never worry about myself
Im getting younger everyday
I keep my troubles to myself
And smile night through a tear
I hope that I never do get old
And live ten thousand years

Im going back to the sunny south
To stay their all my life
If some good girl won’t love this man
She can be my wife
I’ll try to make her happy
And love her all the time
I hope that she’s a millionaire
Cause I ain’t got a dime