Verse > Anthologies > William McCarty, ed. > The American National Song Book
William McCarty, comp.  The American National Song Book.  1842.
Capture of Little York
WHEN Britain, with envy and malice inflamed,
  Dared dispute the dear rights of Columbia’s bless’d union,
We thought of the time when our freedom we claim’d,
  And fought ’gainst oppression with fullest communion.
  Our foes on the ocean have been forced to yield,        5
  And fresh laurels we now gather up in the field.
Freedom’s flag on the wilds of the west is unfurl’d,
  And our foes seem to find their resistance delusion;
For our eagle her arrows amongst them has hurl’d,
And their ranks of bold veterans fill’d with confusion.
        Our foes on the ocean, &c.
On the lakes of the west, full of national pride,
  See our brave little fleet most triumphantly riding!
And behold the brave tars on the fresh-water tide,
  In a noble commander, brave Chauncey, confiding.
        Our foes on the ocean, &c.
Their deeds of proud valour shall long stand enroll’d        15
  On the bright shining page of our national glory:
And oft, in the deep winter’s night, shall be told
  The exploits of the tars of American story.
        Our foes on the ocean, &c.
Nor less shall the soldiers come in for their praise,
  Who engaged to accomplish the great expedition;        20
And a monument Fame shall for them cheerily raise,
  And their deeds shall in history find repetition.
        Our foes on the ocean, &c.
Let Britons still boast of their prowess and pluck;
  We care not a straw for their muskets and cannon.
In the field we will beat them, unless they’ve the luck        25
  To run from their foes like Tenedos and Shannon.
        Our foes on the ocean, &c.
Our sweet little bull-dogs, they thunder’d away,
  And our sailors and soldiers the foe still kept mauling,
Till they grew very sick of such tight Yankee play,
  And poor Sheaffe and his troops then ran bawling away.
        Our foes on the ocean, &c.
But the rascals on malice quite fully were bent:
  And as from the fort they were cowardly going,
In pursuance to what was at first their intent,
  The magazine they had resolved on up-blowing.
        Our foes on the ocean, &c.
Two hundred brave soldiers there met with their death;        35
  And while for their country they nobly were dying,
Full fifty bold Britons at once lost their breath,
  And with them in the air were their carcasses flying.
        Our foes on the ocean, &c.
The brave General Pike there met with his end;
  But his virtues his country forever will cherish:        40
And while o’er his grave fair Freedom shall bend,
  She will swear that his memory never shall perish.
        Our foes on the ocean, &c.
Let the minions of Britain swarm over our coast;
  Columbians, all cowardly conduct disdaining,
We’ll teach the invaders how vain is their boast,        45
  And contend, whilst a drop of their blood is remaining.
        Our foes on the ocean, &c.
Then, freemen, arise, and gird on your swords,
  And declare, while you still have the means of resistance,
That you ne’er will give up for the threatening of words,
  Nor of arms, those dear rights which you prize as existence.
        Our foes on the ocean, &c.

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