The Old Chisolm Trail
Oh come along, boys, and listen to my tale,
I’ll tell you all my troubles on the ol’ Chisholm trail.
Come a-ti yi youpy youpy yea youpy yea
Come a-ti yi youpy youpy yea
I foot in the stirrup an’ I hand on a- horn,
I’m the best damned cowboy ever was born.
On a ten dollar horse and a forty dollar saddle,
I goin inta punchin’ Them long horn cattle.
Started up the trail October twenty-third
Started up the trail with the 2-U herd.
Woke up one morning on the Chisholm trail,
With a rope in my hand and a cow by the tail,
I’m up in the morning before daylight,
And before I sleep the moon shine bright.
Oh, it’s cloudy in the west, and a lookin’ like rain,
And my darned old slicker’s in the wagon again.
No chaps, no slicker, and it’s pouring down rain,
And I swear, by God, I’ll never night herd again.
Last night on guard, and the leader broke the ranks,
I hit my horse down the shoulders and spurred him in the flanks.
The wind began to blow and the rain began to fall,
And it looked by god we was gonna lose ’em all.
Crippled my Horse, an don’t know how
Ropin at the horns of a 2-U cow.
With lighnin in his eye, and thunder in his heal.
He went spinnin round like a houp on a wheel
My hoss throwed me off at the creek called Mud
My hoss throwed me off and I landed with a thud
Last time I saw him he was runnin cross the level,
Kickin up his heals, and runnin like the devil.
We rounded ’em up and put ’em in the cars
And that was the last of the old Two-U Bars.
I went to the boss to get my roll,
Boss had me figured for nine dollars in the hole.
Well me an the boss had a lil spat,
So I hit him in the face with my ten gallon hat.
Well my boss man said, “Well I’ll fire you,
Not only you, but the whole damn crew.
So I sold my horse, and I sold my Saddle,
An’ you can go to hell with your long horn cattle
And I hadn’t been home two days or three,
I put off my gal for to see.
Tammy said “you better quit that cowboy life,
If you ever want to have a pretty little wife.
I’ll sell my saddle, and buy me plow
Swear by god, I’ll never rope another cow.
Texas Confederate soldiers returning home from the Civil War found that in their absence the herds of longhorn cattle they were raising before the war had doubled in size and were now roaming the southern tip of the state unbranded. They were so plentiful that they had little value in Texas, but the industrial cities of the North were booming with immigrant labor and hungry mouths to feed. So began the era of the American cowboy and the great cattle drives, in which cattle were rounded up and herded north into Kansas, Missouri, and Wyoming. There they met the new railroad lines that could carry the meat to the East Coast.
The first trail that was widely used for these long drives was called the Chisholm Trail. By the time the trail fell into disuse in 1882, hundreds of cowboys had driven tens of thousands of cattle up the trail, inventing and singing countless verses to Old Chisholm Trail.
See Ya’ll here in the morning, with a little Cowboy Culture.