MacEdward Leach and the Songs of Atlantic Canada
George's Banks
John James NFLD 2 Tape 9 Track 1
Trepassey Audio:
Ballad

LEACH: All right, let her go.
JAMES: (sings)

It bein' in the year of ninety-two as you may understand
We were driven to leave our homes and friends so dear on the shores of Newfoundland
We first set sail for Canada employment for to find
To work there on the railroad sure we were all inclined

We next set sail for Halifax our fortune for to try
To work there on the riverboats our wages they ran high
We were robbed of all our earning which brought us to a stand
Which made me curse the hour I left my home in Newfoundland

We next set sail for Montreal from there to Boston town
Seeking for employment there we wandered all around
There work it being a kind of scarce for Gloucester we did repair
Till we shipped on board of the Morning dew for George's banks did steer

We anchored on those George's banks November the twenty-two
It’s my intention to relate the hardship we went through
The wind came from the East-Nort'east wit' bitter frost and snow
The wind came from the East-Nort'east most violently did blow

Next morning the sight that met our eyes twas dismal for to spy
To see those half froze fishermen, as they would pass you by
And vessels of the largest mould a-sinking all around
The Jub'lee crew of twenty-two on Georgie that went down

But providence proved kind to us we had a change of wind
We cut our cable to the Dow left Georgie's banks behind
Twas by our Captain' s orders our vessel we crowded sail
And for four long days and nights my b'ys we ran her before the gale

Till our log line partially told us that the land we were drawing nigh
At four o'clock in the morning a light we chanced to spy
Revolving light three flashes white as you may understand
The Southernmost point twas in Cape Race on the shores of Newfoundland

Twas by our Captain's orders our vessel we rounded to
Of eighteen noble seamen b'ys remained but five and two
The rest of them was washed overboard as you may understand
They met wit’ a cold and a watery grave on the shores of Newfoundland

Twas by our Captain' s orders our vessel we rounded to
We tried hard under double-reefed sails but nothing could she do
Shake out your reefs the Captain cried the land we must keep clear
And for four long hours on a bowline stretch on the water she did tear
Twas by our reck’ning and good conduct we sighted Cape Spear
Into the harbour of St John's where shipwrecks do appear
Where we found friends kind-hearted to listen to our sad tale
Till I relate the hardship of the las' November gale

Come all you rovers of Newfoundland that have a mind to roam
To cross the wild and stormy seas far from your native homes
And if you do be sad by me I hope you'll understand
And stay on shore don't go no more from your homes in Newfoundland


Notes

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