Wreck of Number Nine

Cat. #0987 (MFH #704) - As sung by Ollie Gilbert, Mountain View, Arkansas on March 11, 1970

On a cold winter night
Not a star was in sight
An' th north wind came
Howlin' down th line
With his sweetheart, so dear
Stood a brave engineer
With his orders to pull ole number nine
She kissed him goodbye
With tears in his eyes
An' a joy in her heart
She couldn't hide
For th whole world was bright
When she told him that night
Tomorrow she'd be his blushin' bride

As th wheels humed th song
As th train rolled along
An' th black smoke come pourin' from th stack
As th headlight a gleam
Seemed to brighten' his dream
For tomorrow he'd be comin' back
He speed up th hill
But his brave head was still
For th headlight was shining in his face
He whispered a prayer
As he threw on th air
For he knew it would be his final race

In th wreck he was found
Lying there on th ground
An' he ask them to raise his weary head
As his breath slowla went
This message he sent
To th maiden who thought that they'd be wed
Have a little white home
That I bought for our own
Where I'd dreamed we'd be happy, bye an' bye
But I leave it to you
For I know you'll be true
Till we meet at th golden gate, goodbye