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Murder of F.C.Benwell (Berwill) Come all you tender Christians, wherever you may be And kindly pay attention to these few word from me On the 14th of November I am condemned to die For the murder of F.C. Berwill, upon the gallow high cho: My name is J.R. Birchell, that name I'll never deny I leave my aged parents in sorrow for to die Oh little did they think, all in my youthfl bloom That on the gallows high, I would meet my fatal doom Berwill was an Englishman and had not yet a wife He came into this country for to seek an honest life They say that I betrayed him into a certain spot And there with a revolver, poor Berwill I than shot I tried to play off innocent, but found it would not do The evidence being against me, I really had no show They took me to a prison and locked me in a cell And till my execution, alone there I must dwell My wife she came to see me to bid her fond adieu She said it was heartbreaking, but this she had to do She sadi, "My dearest husband, you know that you must die For the murder of F.C. Berwill, upon the gallows high." At nine o'clock in the morning, I knew my doom was near I gathered up my courage and braved it to the rear The last farewells were spoken; the words "Thy will be done" Then the trapdoor it flew open, and Birchell he was hung. DT #732 Laws E26 From Burt, American Murder Ballads tune: Charles Guiteau Birchell killed Benwell in Ontario in 1861 collected in Utah SOF apr97
Thanks to Mudcat for the Digital Tradition!