Oh, the year was 1778, HOW I WISH I WAS IN SHERBROOKE NOW!
A letter of marque come from the king,
To the scummiest vessel I'd ever seen,
God damn them all!
I was told we'd cruise the seas for American gold
We'd fire no guns-shed no tears
Now I'm a broken man on a Halifax pier
The last of Barrett's Privateers.
Oh, Elcid Barrett cried the town, HOW I WISH I WAS . . .
For twenty brave men all fishermen who
would make for him the Antelope's crew
The Antelope sloop was a sickening sight,
She'd a list to the port and and her sails in rags
And the cook in scuppers with the staggers and the jags
On the King's birthday we put to sea,
We were 91 days to Montego Bay
Pumping like madmen all the way
On the 96th day we sailed again,
When a bloody great Yankee hove in sight
With our cracked four pounders we made to fight
The Yankee lay low down with gold,
She was broad and fat and loose in the stays
But to catch her took the Antelope two whole days
Then at length we stood two cables away,
Our cracked four pounders made an awful din
But with one fat ball the Yank stove us in
The Antelope shook and pitched on her side,
Barrett was smashed like a bowl of eggs
And the Maintruck carried off both me legs
So here I lay in my 23rd year,
It's been 6 years since we sailed away
And I just made Halifax yesterday
Barrett's Privateers Lyrics