Opening of the New Railway

Probably printed for the opening of the first section of the Birmingham to London railway in 1837 or for the opening of the completed line in 1838; or both.

Opening of the New Railway


[Note 301.1]


Now folks I will tell you although I’m no clown
By steam you may ride with speed up and down
Now that’s all the go, and I’ll tell you for why
The people are eager for to learn to fly

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

On opening the railway you all know well [Note 301-2]
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

There’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

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

The colliers from Hampton and Bilstos likewise
And Wedgebury nailors(1) are struck with surprise
Dress’d up in their best, they cut a fine show.
To see the railroad away they do go

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
To see the railroad how she trudged on her pegs

What a treat for young lovers to 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
Such dear little creatures full 30 per day
For young engineers to supply the railway

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

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

To see them come in how the people do flock
To accommodate all there’s lots of fine pop(1)
And the ladies dress’d up in their costume so fine
Partake of good ale and whiskey so fine.