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Crime & punishment

Young Henry the poacher

(26) Young Henry the poacher

                YOUNG HENRY
                THE POACHER.

COME all you wild and wicked youths wherever
you may be,
I pray you give attention and listen unto me,
The fate of us poor transports as you shall understand,
The hardships that we undergo upon Van Dieman's
land.               [ CHORUS.]
          Young men all now beware,
          Lest you are drawn into a snare.

My parents reared me tenderly, good learning gave to
me,                                                    [destiny ;
Till by bad company I was beguiled which proved my
I was brought up in Warwickshire, near Southam
town did dwell,                                       [well.
My name it is young Henry in Hardourn known full
Me and five more went out one night into Squire Dun-
hill's park,                                             [dark ;
To see if we could get some game, the night it proved
But to our great misfortune they trepanned us with
speed,                                     [hearts to bleed.
And sent us off to Warwick gaol which made our
It was at the March Assizes to the bar we did repair,
Like Job we stood with patience, to hear our sentence
there ;
There being some old offenders, which made our case
go hard,                                           [on board.
My sentence was for fourteen years, then I was sent
The ship that bore us from the land the Speedwell was
by name,                             [the raging main ;
For full five months and upwards, boys, we ploughed
Neither land nor harbour could we see, believe it is
no lie,                                                      [sky.
All around us one black water, boys, above us one blue
I often looked behind me, towards my native shore,
That cottage of contentment which we shall see no
more ;
Nor yet my own dear father who tore his hoary hair,
Likewise my tender mother the womb that did me bear.
The fifteenth of September 'twas, then we made the
land,                                                    [hand ;
At four o'clock we went on shore all chained hand in
To see our fellow sufferers we felt I can't tell how,
Some chained unto a harrow, and others to a plough.
No shoes or stockings they had on, nor hat had they
to wear,                               [heads were bare ;
But a leather frock and linsey drawers, their feet and
They chained them up by two and two like horses in
a team,                                                   [cane.
Their driver he stood over them with his Malacca
Then I was marched to Sydney town, without any
more delay,                                               [be ;
Where a gentleman he bought me his book-keeper to
I took this occupation my master liked me well, [tell.
My joys were out of measure, and I'm sure no one can
We had a female servant, Rosanna was her name,
For fourteen years a convict she from Wolverhampton
came ;
We often told our tales of love when we were blest at
home,                                               [ to roam.
But now we're rattling of our chains in foreign lands

[NLS note: a graphic appears here - see image of page]

                BOTANY BAY

          London:—H. Such, Printer & Publisher,
               177, Union Street, Boro'. S. E.

COME all young men of learning, take warning by
I'd have you quit night walking, and shun bad com-
pany ;
I'd have you quit night walking, or else you'll rue the
When you are transported and going to Botany Bay.
I was brought up in London town, a place I know
full well,                                                  (tell,
Brought up by honest parents the truth to you I'll
Brought up by honest parents, and reared so tenderly,
Till I became a roving blade which proved my destiny:

My character soon taken, then I was sent to jail,
My friends they tried to clear me, but nothing could
At the Old Bailey sessions the judge to me did say,
The jury has found you guilty, you must go to Botany

To see my aged father, dear, as he stood at the bar,
Likewise my aged mother, as her grey locks she tore,
In tearing her old grey locks, these words to me she
did say,                                       (Botany Bay.
Oh ! son, Oh ! son,what have you done ? you're going to

As we sailed down the river on the 28th of May,
Every ship that we passed, we heard the sailors say,
There goes a ship of clever lads we're sorry for to say,
And for some crime or other they are going to Botany

There is a girl in London town, a girl I know full well,
If ever I get my liberty along with her I'll dwell,
If ever I get my liberty, I'll forsake all other girls,
I will shun all evil company, and adien to New South


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