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Young Monroe


courtesy of - It's about loggers on the river and how the foreman was killed in the log jam - his woman Clara Vernon was buried in the end next to the dead foreman Young Monroe

Come all you true-born shanty boys Wherever you may be
Come sit you on the deacon seat And listen to me
I'll sing the jam on Gerry's Rock And a hero you should know
The bravest of all shanty-boys The foreman Young Monroe

It was on a Sunday morning As you will quickly hear
Our logs were piled mountain high We could not keep them clear
Our foreman said Come cheer up lads With heart relieved of fear
We'll break the jam on Gerry's Rock And for Saginaw we'll steer

Now some of them were willing While others they were not
For to work on jams on Sunday They did not think we ought
But six of our Canuck boys Did volunteer to go
And break the jam on Gerry's Rock With the foreman Young Monroe

They had not rolled off many logs When they heard his clear voice say
I'd have you lads on your guard For the jam will soon give way
These words were hardly spoken When the mass did break and go
And it carried of those six brave lads And their foreman Young Monroe

When the rest of our shanty boys The sad news came to hear
In search of their dead comrades To the river they did steer
Some of the mangled bodies A-floating down did go
While crushed and bleeding near the bank Was that of Young Monroe

They took him from his watery grave Smoothed back his raven hair
There was one fair girl among them Whose sad cries rent the air
There was one fair form among them A maid from Saginaw town
Whose moans and cries rose to the skies For her true lover who'd gone down

For Clara was a nice young girl The riverman's true friend
She with her widowed mother dear Lived near the river's bend
The wages of her own true love The boss to her did pay
And the shanty-boys for her made up A generous purse next day

They buried him with sorrow deep 'Twas on the first of May
Come all you brave shanty-boys And for your comrade pray
Engraved upon a hemlock tree That by the grave did grow
Was the name and date of the sad fate Of the foreman Young Monroe

Fair Clara did not long survive Her heart broke with her grief
And scarcely two months later Death came to her relief
And when this time had passed away And she was called to go
Her last request was granted To rest beside Young Monroe    

Come all you brave shanty boys I would have you call and see
Those two green mounds by the riverside Where grows the hemlock tree
The shanty-boys cleared off the wood By the lovers there laid low
'Twas handsome Clara Vernon And our foreman Young Monroe

The author of this website has put a lot of time and effort into gathering the greatest collection of sea shanties for the world to enjoy - There are songs that have been to sung to a job of work at sea for many, many years and collecting them has been a great endeavour. - Roger Chartier has made the effort out of his own interest and the requests that he has gotten to do this work from fellow musicians who wanted a good source of sea shanties to draw on and learn from. He has been told that for this effort he is a remarkable man.