Collected by Mary C. Parler Nancy Philley
(Collected in Fayetteville, Ark.) June 2, 1959
Reel 310, Item 10
The Boys in Blue
Twas on an autumn evening,
An old man bent with age,
He landed at a portal From off a distant stage.
Is this the express office, sir,
I’ve come to meet my son.
They told me that the train was due At this place at half past one.
You've made a slight mistake sir,
I’d like for you to know This is the express office,
And not the town depot.
You do not understand me, sir,
With trembling lips he said,
He's not coming to me as a passenger,
But he’s coming to me dead.
He's coming home to mother,
He's coming home today,
He's coming in a casket,
No more to go astray.
How often did we write to him And beg him to come back.
I'll tell you it is lonesome here Without our romping Jack.
Just then a whistle pierced the air,
The express, someone cried.
And with a feeble trembling step,
The old man passed outside.
Just then a casket in a box Was lowered to the ground Twas then an eager anxious crowd That quickly gathered round.
Don't handle him so roughly boys,
For that's our darling Jack,
He left us just as you are now,
Look how he's coming back.
He's broken his dear mother's heart And mine is broken too.
She told him he would come back dead If he joined the boys in blue.
-more—He joined the boys in blue, a lad, And went off to the war,
Away from his dear mother,
Away from home so far.
He's broken his dear mother's heart And mine is broken too;
Thank God he died a hero's death While with the boys in blue.
The Boys in Blue Reel 310, Item 10 Continued
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