Birmingham And Liverpool Railway

Synopsis: A description of the opening of the Birmingham and Liverpool Railway and of the local people who went to watch the ceremony.


Now folks I will tell you although I'm a clown¹
By steam you may ride with speed up and down,
Now that's all the go I will tell you for why
The people are eager to learn for to fly.

Chorus: You may travel by steam, or so the folks say
              All the world over upon the railway

On the 4th of July I recollect well [Note 030.1]
What bustle there was in the morning I'll tell
With lasses and lads so buxom(1) and gay
Delighted and talking about the railway

To view the railroad away they did go
Tis a great undertaking as you very well know
It surpasses all others believe me its true
There's tunnels for miles that you have to go through

Here's coaches and carts to accommodate all
The lame and the lazy, the great and the small
If you wish to ride, to be sure you must pay
To see all the fun sir upon the railway

Hoe pleasant it is for to see them indeed;
The long train of carraiges go with such speed -
O dear Mrs Tit where is our daughter?
She will be run o'er by this boing hot water.

Colliers from Hampton and Bilston likewise
And Wedgbury nailors(1) are struck with surprise
To see the railroad to be sure they must go
Drest up in their best, they cut a fine show.

The cobbler left the old shoes in the shop
Old wommen on crutches were seen for to hop
The tailor his customers would not obey
But rode on his goose¹ to see the railway

There was dumpling bet with Jack the Moonraker(1)
There was buxom young Kit with the Butcher and Baker
And Black Sal from Walsall with two wooden legs [Note 030.2]
To see the railroad how she trudged on her pegs

What a treat for young lovers to see Gretna Green
The blacksmith will tie the knot for them by steam
With his hammer and anvil he'll make them obey
And pack them off snugly upon the railway.

In London I've heard there is a machine
Invented for making young children by steam [Note 030.3]
Such dear little creatures full thirty each day
For young engineers to supply the railway

Don't you think with the Tories we've a fine chance [Note 030.4]
We can send them directly over to France,
And when landed there, if they cannot agree
We will send them by steam to America.

Talk of ships on the sea - that is all stuff(1)
By water or land you may ride snug enough
If you have got money, your passage to pay
You may ride far and near upon the railway

Now there's Mr Pops and his lovely daughter,
Resolved they are for to travel by water,
This new-fashioned way now friend, do you mind
For the water goes fast and Pops goes behind

To see them come in how the people do flock,
To accommodate all there's lots of prime pop,
And ladies drest up in their costume so fine,
There's good ale and brandy whiskey and wine.

So now my good fellows let us be free
Again fill the glasses now merry we'll be
Success to all trades in the reign of our queen
And boiling hot water that travels by steam.