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Haswell cages


   Tune.The Wedding of Ballyporeen.

Come all you good people and listen a while,
I will sing you a song that will cause you to smile,
It is about Haswell I mean for to sing,
Concerning the new plan we started last spring.
And the very first thing I will mention,
Without any evil intention,
It is concerning this new invention,
Of winding up coals in a cage.

It was in eighteen hundred and thirty eight,
We began to prepare to make the shaft right,
We put in the conductors from bottom to top,
The materials were ready prepar'd at the shop,
From the top of the pit to the bottom,
One hundred and fifty six fathom,
And the distance you do think it nothing,
You ride so quickly in the cage.

Now considering the depth its surprising to say,
The quantity of work we can draw in a day,
Five hundred and thirty tons of the best coal,
In the space of twelve hours we can win up this hole,
About forty five tons in an hour,
And viewers, overmen, and hewers,
Our engines must have a great power,
To run at such speed with the cage,

Then as soon as the tubs do come to the day,
To the weighing machine they are taken away
Where two men are appointed there to attend,
To see justice done between master and men.
And when they leave the weighing machine, sir,
Straightway they do go to the screen, sir,
And the keeker does see that they've clean, sir,
All the coals that come up in the cage.

I have wrought with the corves, I have wrought with the tubs,
I have wrought where the baskets came up by the lugs,
I have wrought by the dozen, I have wrought by the score,
But this curious contrivance, I never saw before.
When we get in, they then pull the rapper,
At the top it does make a great clatter,
And the brakesman they know what's the matter,
And bring us away in a cage.

And when the bell rings and the top we approach,
It oft puts me in mind of a new railway coach,
The number of passengers I cannot tell,
But she brings a great many I know very well.
But I wish they may not overload her,
And do some mischief on the road, sir,
Too much charge makes a cannon explode, sir,
And so will too much in the cage.

Now the young men and maids do sometimes take a trip
Out to sea in fine weather, on board a steam ship,
But if any be curious enough to engage,
For a trip down below, and a ride in our cage,
It would be a fine recreation,
For to go down and view the low station,
I wish they may meet no temptation,
When they take a trip in our cage.

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




From wandering in a foreign land
An Exile had returned,
And when he saw his own dear strea ms
His heart with pleasure burned ;
The days departed and their joys,
Came bounding to his breast—
And thus the feelings of his heart
In native strains express'd.


Flow on thou shining river
Thy rolling course for ever,
Forget thee will I never—
Thy streams are ever dear ;
Oft on thy banks I've wander'd,
And o'er thy beauties ponder'd,
There many an hour I've squander'd
Along the banks of Wear.

O, Wear ! in thy beauty flowing,
There's magic joy bestowing ;
I feel thy breezes blowing—
Thy streams are ever dear ;
I 've sought thee in the morning,
When crimson clouds were burning,
And thy green hills adorning—
Thy hills, Oh ! lovely Wear.

When stormy seas were round me,
And distant nations bound me,
In memory still I found thee—
A ray of hope now dear ;
Thy vallies lie before me,
Thy woods are waving o'er me,
My home thou dost restore me—
I hail thee ! lovely Wear.


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