OLD CHISHOLM TRAIL

Posted on Posted in Breedloves's Folk Songs
  • OLD CHISHOLM TRAIL
    One of the oldest of the cowboy songs, it dates back to the years soon after the Civil War
    when half-wild longhorns were driven from Texas to the shipping points on the new
    railroads in Kansas. The trail was named after a part Indian trader, Jesse Chisholm. It
    went from central Texas, through the center of Oklahoma and into eastern Kansas. Other
    trails farther to the west eventually replaced it. There were numerous versions of the
    song, including some ones not really suitable for Cub Scouts.
    Oh come along, boys, and listen to my tale,
    I’ll tell you all my troubles on the ol’ Chisholm trail.
    (chorus)
    Come a-ti yi youpy youpy yea youpy yea
    Come a-ti yi youpy youpy yea
    On a ten dollar horse and a forty dollar saddle,
    I was ridin’, and a punchin’ Texas cattle.
    We left ol’ Texas October twenty-third
    Drivin’ up the trail with the U-2 herd.
    I’m up in the morning before daylight,
    And before I sleep the moon shine bright.
    It’s bacon and beans most every day,
    I’d just as soon be eating prairie hay.
    I woke up one morning on the Chisholm trail,
    With a rope in my hand and a cow by the tail,
    Last night on guard, and the leader broke the ranks,
    I hit my horse down the shoulders and spurred him in the flanks.
    Oh, it’s cloudy in the west, and a lookin’ like rain,
    And my darned old slicker’s in the wagon again.
    Oh the wind commenced to blow and the rain began to fall,
    And it looked by grab that we was gonna lose ’em all.
    I jumped in the saddle an’ I grabbed a-hold the horn,
    The best damned cowpuncher ever was born.
    I was on my best horse, and a going on the run,
    The quickest shootin’ cowboy that ever pulled a gun.
    No chaps, no slicker, and it’s pouring down rain,
    And I swear, by God, I’ll never night herd again.
    I herded and I hollered, and I done pretty well,
    Till the boss said, “Boys, just let ’em go to Hell.”
    I’m going to the ranch to draw my money,
    Goin’ into town to see my honey.
    I went to the boss to get my roll,
    He figured me out nine dollars in the hole.
    So I’ll sell my outfit as fast as I can,
    And I won’t punch cows for no damn man.
  • So I sold old baldy and I hung up my saddle,
    And I bid farewell to the longhorn cattle.