Australian Folk Songs

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Dunn, Gilbert, and Ben Hall (1911)

Come, all you lads of loyalty and listen to my tale,
A story of bushranging days to you I will unveil ;
'Tis of three heroes, we'll toast them one and all,
And sit and sing, long live the King, Dunn, Gilbert, and Ben Hall.

Those three, they were well mounted: it was their hearts' delight ;
They stuck up all both great and small, by day as well as night ;
They rode thro' every township, and visited every ball,
'Twas nothing but diversion, for Dunn, Gilbert, and Ben Hall.

I laugh to see those mounted troopers scouring of the bush
Like diggers in the golden days a hastening to a rush ;
But our Australian heroes, they do deceive them all ;
There's a thousand pounds, alive or dead, for Dunn, Gilbert, and Ben Hall.

As Ben rode out one evening--all trade was rather slack--
On private information, a trap got on his track ;
He said. "Hall, you're my prisoner, surrender unto me ;
Ben bolted from his: saddle, and climbed, into a tree.

With rage and disappointment, the traps they cursed and swore ;
They moped and poked around about, they tracked him o'er and o'er,
They kept their watch until daylight, but still no Ben was found,
Until they spied his cabbage-tree, which lay upon the ground.

They found his place of ambush, and on him they did creep,
And stealing up, by treachery, they shot him in his sleep,
His body was pierced with thirty bullets, and two went thro' his brain,
And on the ground his body, a target did remain.

The troopers are but paper men, who carry a Carbine ;
They're something like the olden troops, they had in '39.
A traveller upon the roads, was taken from his dray :
With bracelets on his wrists, he was captive led away.

And now to capture Morgan, with the shinening boots and spurs,
Away goes, eight or ten of them like so many yelping; curs ;
But their horses they knocked up to last, he cannot captured be ;
They come back from the fruitless chase, and Morgan still is free.

And now my song is ended, I think I will resign ;
We'll toast those five bush gallants, with a glass, of sparkling wine.
We'll give them three times three my boys, well toast them one and all,
We'll drink and sing, long live the King, Dunn, Gilbert, and Ben Hall.


From the Brisbane Newspaper the Truth Sunday 13 August 1911 p. 11.


australian traditional songs . . . a selection by mark gregory