The Office Had Just Opened

Cat. #0154 (MFH #466) - As sung by Mrs. Iva Haslett, West Plains, Missouri on July 31, 1958

The office had just opened
When an old man worn in years
Had entered, on his care worn face
The sign of grief and tears
And as th clerk approached him
With a trembling voice, did say
I'm looking for my boy, sir
He's coming home today

I do not understand you, sir
But surely you must know
This is an express office, sir
And not a town depot
And if your boy's coming home today
Th clerk, with smiles, did say
You'll find him with th passengers
At th depot o'er th way

You do not understand me sir,
The old man shook his head
He's not coming home on a passenger
But by express instead
He's coming home to Mother dear,
With tear dim eyes, he said
He's coming in a casket, sir
He's coming to us dead

Just then a whistle pierced the air
The express train, some cried
The old man rose in breathless haste
And quickly passed outside
And from th coach, a long white box
Was lowered to th ground
It seemed th most heart rendering
To those who stood around

Don't handle it rough, dear boys, he cried
It contains our darling Jack
See how he went away
See how he's coming back
He's broke his poor old Mothers heart
Her warning has come true
She said, he'd be brought to us dead
When he joined th boys in blue