Kate from Baltimore

Play recording: Kate from Baltimore

view / hide recording details [+/-]

  • Teideal (Title): Kate from Baltimore.
  • Uimhir Chatalóige Ollscoil Washington (University of Washington Catalogue Number): 812905.
  • Uimhir Chnuasach Bhéaloideas Éireann (National Folklore of Ireland Number): none.
  • Uimhir Roud (Roud Number): 5172.
  • Uimhir Laws (Laws Number): none.
  • Uimhir Child (Child Number): none.
  • Cnuasach (Collection): Joe Heaney Collection, University of Washington, Seattle.
  • Teanga na Croímhíre (Core-Item Language): English.
  • Catagóir (Category): song.
  • Ainm an té a thug (Name of Informant): Joe Heaney.
  • Ainm an té a thóg (Name of Collector): Fredric Lieberman.
  • Dáta an taifeadta (Recording Date): unavailable.
  • Suíomh an taifeadta (Recording Location): New York, United States of America.
  • Ocáid an taifeadta (Recording Occasion): workshop.
  • Daoine eile a bhí i láthair (Others present): Eileen Clohessy.
  • Stádas chóipcheart an taifeadta (Recording copyright status): unavailable.

When I was young I was fond of fun, like every sporting blade
I used to talk, and sometimes walk, with a handsome, comely maid
This is the way, I heard them say, I spent my days of yore;
‘Til I found of late I was in love with Kate from the town of Baltimore.

When her father Frank heard my demands, he flew into a rage
He said, ‘You fool! You’re far too poor to marry my daughter Kate!’
He said to me, ‘Oh, young man,’ said he, ‘your follies now give o’er –
Or this very night I’ll have your life in the town of Baltimore!’

I went to Kate for to relate my misery and woe
She said to me, ‘Oh, John,’ said she, ‘There is no relief – but go!
If I were you I would go and ‘list1, his anger to avoid
And besides,’ said she, ‘I would love to be a brave young soldier’s bride.’

So, being content, away I went and I joined the ‘Ninety-Eight
I’m enlisted now; she has broken her vow – farewell to my love Kate!
The note she wrote nearly broke my heart when I read it o’er and o’er
Saying she’s married to a one, a farmer’s son, from the town of Baltimore.

So men that’s wise, take my advice, and don’t be led astray
Don’t believe false women, no matter what they say!
They say they love you dearly, and they swear it on their oath
But they’ll curl their hair and they’ll leave you there, like Kate from Baltimore.


1. enlist.