John Hardy John Hardy was a brave little man He carried a pistol every day He killed a man in Shallow Town 'Twas a sight to see John Hardy getting away, Lord, Lord 'Twas a sight to see John Hardy getting away John Hardy was standing at the gambling bar And was not concerning the game; Up stepped a lady, threw down half a dollar, Said, "Deal John Hardy in the game," etc. John Hardy picked up the half a dollar And threw it against the ground, Saying, "The very first man that wins my money, I sure will blow him down." A big buck nigger he won the money And picked it up from the ground; John Hardy he drew out his pistol And shot that nigger down. John Hardy got on an old freight train, The old freight train was too late; And if the old train had n't a-been behind time, John Hardy would have made his escape. John Hardy was a-standing at the station bars, So dark he could not see; Up stepped a policeman and took him by the arm, Says, "Johnny, come and go with me." The policeman he arrested John And brought him on to jail; They no bail allowed for a murderer, And they locked John Hardy up in jail. John wrote to his father and mother to come And get him out on bail; They no bond allowed for murdering crime; So they kept John Hardy in jail. John's father and mother crossed the deep blue sea, To get him out on bail; Says, "There 's no bond for a murdering man." So they kept John Hardy in jail. John Hardy had a pretty little wife, She always went dressed in green; And coming down on the hanging ground, Says, "Johnny, you were always too mean." John Hardy had a true little boy, He was all dressed in black; As coming down on the hanging ground, Says, "Papa, I wish that you were back." John Hardy had a true little girl, She always dressed in red; As coming down on the hanging ground, Says, "Papa, I would rather be dead." "I've been to the East and I've been to the West I've been the wide world round; I've been to the river and I've been baptized, And now I'm on my hanging ground." DT #656 Laws I2 From Cox, Folk-Songs of the South Knott Cnty, Kentucky, 1924, Prof. Combs John Hardy was hanged in 1894 in West Virginia John Hardy (gambler, murderer) may have been the same man as John Henry (steel driver) SOF
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