The Mudcat Café TM
Thread #49340   Message #2730721
Posted By: GUEST
24-Sep-09 - 05:52 PM
Thread Name: Lyr Req: Red Iron Ore / Derry down, down
Subject: Lyr Add: RED IRON ORE
Hi all,

I've recorded this ballad on our (Chanteyranger and Radriano) soon to be released third shanty album. Here are the lyrics I have:


Come all ye bold sailors that follow the Lakes
On an iron ore vessel your living to make
I shipped in Chicago, bid adieu to the shore
Bound away to Escanaba for red iron ore
Derry down, down, down derry down

In the month of September, the seventeenth day
Two dollars and a quarter is all they would pay
And on Monday morning the Bridgeport did take
The E.C. Roberts out in the Lake

The wind from the south'ard sprang up a fresh breeze
And away through Lake Michigan the Roberts did sneeze
Down through Lake Michigan the Roberts did roar
And on Friday morning we passed through death's door

This packet she howled across the mouth of Green Bay
And before her cutwater she dashed the white spray
We rounded the sandpoint, our anchor let go
We furled in our canvas and the watch went below

Next morning we hove alongside the Exile
And soon was made fast to an iron ore pile
They lowered their shutes and like thunder did roar
They spouted into us that red iron ore

Some sailors took shovels while others got spades
And some took wheelbarrows - each man to his trade
We looked like red devils, our fingers got sore
We cursed Escanaba and that damned iron ore

The tub Escanaba she towed out the Minch
The Roberts she thought she had left in a pinch
And as she passed by us she bid us goodbye
Saying, "We'll meet you in Cleveland next Fourth of July!"

Through Louse Island it blew a fresh breeze
We made the Foxes, the Beavers, the Skillagalees
We flew by the Minch for to show her the way
And she ne'er hove in sight till we were off Thunder Bay

Across Saginaw Bay the Roberts did ride
With the dark and deep waters rolling over her side
And now for Port Huron the Roberts must go
Where the tug Kate Williams she took us in tow

We went through North Passage - O Lord, how it blew!
And all round the Dummy a large fleet there came too
The night being dark, Old Nick it would scare
We hove up next morning and for Cleveland did steer

Now the Roberts is in Cleveland, made fast stem and stern
And over the bottle we'll spin a big yarn
But Captain Harvey Shannon had ought to stand treat
For getting into Cleveland ahead of the fleet

Now my song is ended, I hope you won't scoff
Our dunnage is packed and all hands are paid off
Here's a health to the Roberts, she's staunch, strong and true
Not forgotten the bold boys that comprise her crew