Rowan County Crew

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Rowan County Crew-Dock Boggs
Banjo, gCGBD tuning, played in G
NOTE: The word "Ireland" was mis-spoken, and was intended to be sung "he died in iron bands", which is to say, hand-cuffed. In the second verse from the last, Dock pronounced "deliberate", "delibbity".

Come all you fathers and mothers, and brothers, sisters, too
I'll relate to you the history of the Rowan County Crew
Concerning bloody Rowan and many heedless deeds
Now friends, please give attention, remember how it reads

It was in the month of August, all on election day
John Martin, he was wounded, they say by Johnny Day
Oh, Martin couldn't believe it, he could not think it so
His thoughts was Floyd Tolliver, who struck the fatal blow

Oh, Martin, he recovered, some months had come and past
All in the town of Morehead, these men they met at last
Oh, Martin had a friend or two, about the street did walk
He seemed to be uneasy, no one he wished to talk

He walked in Judge Kerridge's grocery, and stepped up to the bar
But little did he think he'd met his fatal hour
The sting of death was near him as Martin rushed in at the door
And a few words passed between them, concerned the row before

The people being frightened, rushed out of the room
And the ball from Martin's pistol laid Tolliver in his tomb
His friends they gather 'round him, a wife to weep and wail
And Martin was soon arrested, and then confined in jail

He's put in jail of Rowan, there to remain a while
In the hands of law and justice, to bravely stand a trial
The people talked of lynching him, but presently they did fail
Some of his friends removed him to the Winchester jail

Some person forged an order, their name I do not know
And the plan was soon agreed upon, and for Martin they did go
They slapped the handcuffs on him, his heart was in distress
They hurried to the station, stepped on the night express

All along the line she lumbered, all at her usual speed
There was only two in number, to commit this awful deed
Oh, Martin's in the smoking car, accompanied by his wife
They did not want her present when they took her husband's life

When they arrived at Farmers, they had no time to lose
And a band approached the engineer and forbid him not to move
They stepped up to the prisoner with pistols in the hand
In death he soon was sinking, he died in Ireland [sic] band

His wife heard the sound, she was in another car
She cried, "Oh Lord, they've killed him!", it's when she heard the pistols fire
The death of these two men caused trouble in the land
Caused men to leave their families and take the parting hand

Our relations are still at war, may never, never cease
Oh, if I could see our loved ones once more in peace
They shot and killed a deputy sheriff, Bumgardner was his hame
They shot him from the bushes, after takin' deliberate aim

The death of him was dreadful, may never be forgot
His body was pierced and torn by thirty-three buckshot
They shot and killed Sol Bradley, a sober and innocent man
They left his wife and childern to do the best they can

They wounded young Ed Sizemore, although his life did save
He seemed to dodge the grog shops, they've stood so near his grave

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