previous next

King Cotton.

When, tempted by Satan, Jeff Davis would try
To imitate Louis Napoleon,
When oaths and allegiance like chaff he made fly,
And trampled whatever was holy on;
To give him a character in the world's eyes,
And bolster his plans misbegotten,
He called on the strongest of all his allies,
(A better than Memminger, Stephens, or Wise,)
His pal and his comrade King Cotton, King Cotton,
His pal and his comrade King Cotton.

“Hurra, mighty Cotton! our scheme is a-foot,
So get up your prettiest figure;
For travelling dress take your best royal suit,
(Dyed gules with the blood of a nigger;)
Go round to the nations and ask for their aid,
And teach them much more than they wot on;
Go, make all your brothers, the monarchs, afraid
Their kingdoms must perish if ‘reft of our trade.”
“By Plutus, I will,” says King Cotton, King Cotton,
“By Plutus, I will,” says King Cotton.

Then off goes King Cotton to find Johnny Bull,
And deep in his counting-house found him;
(Of idols and opium the top shelves were full,
With Bibles and prayer-books just round him.)
“Your help or your life, Master Johnny!” says he;
“Up, arm, and bring Paddy and Scot on!
For if you don't aid such good fellows as we,
Your mills shall be stopped, and then where will you be?
” Put that in your pipe, “says King Cotton, King Cotton,
” Put that in your pipe, “says King Cotton.

Then Johnny looked up with his pen in his hand,
Says he: “My dear Cotton, I tell you,
In the way of fair business, as you understand,
A pirate or two I can sell you.
But to go without corn is quite out of my line,
A Yankee war's not to be thought on;
And though for employment our workingmen pine,
'Twere cheaper to feed them on venison and wine.”
“You and they maybe-blessed!” says King Cotton, King Cotton,
“You and they may be-blessed!” says King Cotton.

King Cotton goes off with a flea in his ear;
Away to Napoleon he hies him:
“I'm sure you will help us, O Emperor dear!”
And then he with flattery plies him.
“My brother and yours ever prays for your weal,
That your glory there be not a spot on;
He sends you an envoy extremely genteel,
The Marquis of Faro and Duke of Sly-deal,
He's one of your set,” says King Cotton, King Cotton,
“He's one of your set,” says King Cotton.
Says Louis, says he: “Live forever, O king!
And long may your pal live in clover!
His mission and mine are to do the same thing--
Crush liberty all the world over.
But though — to assist you my spirit inclines,
A year or two first I must plot on;
Just wait till I've pillaged those Mexican mines,
And then I may help you to cut up some shines.”
“I wish you'd make haste,” says King Cotton, King Cotton,
“I wish you'd make haste,” says King Cotton.

King Cotton goes off with two fleas in his ear,
He goes to those sons of----their mothers,
The copperhead reptiles, who bother us here,
Vallandigham, Wood, and the others;
“Once more, my brave fellows, be true to your kind,
And stay the war-storm that comes hot on!
Bewilder our foe with your fire from behind,
And go it for Davis and slavery blind!
Come give us a lift,” says King Cotton, King Cotton,
“Come give us a lift,” says King Cotton.

The copperheads said: “To our kind we are true,
We lie and we hiss as we used to,
But the people have found they can do without you,
And sad are the straits we're reduced to.
Our necks feel already a kind of a twist,
Our schemes tyrant Lincoln sits squat on;
We try to dissuade those who want to enlist,
But as to our fighting — we daren't resist.”
“You cowardly scum!” says King Cotton,
King Cotton,
“You cowardly scum!” says King Cotton.

King Cotton goes off with three fleas in his ear;
He goes back to Jefferson Davis.
Says Jeff, “How is this? What! are you again here?
And could you do nothing to save us?
Our great institutions are at their last kick,
And all our confederacy rotten;
Up in Pennsylvania I took my best trick,
But Meade was at hand, and he trumped me too quick.
” We are up a tree, “says King Cotton, King Cotton,
” We are up a tree, “says King Cotton.

King Cotton he took off his (sham) royal crown,
He took off his robe that was gay;
His palmetto sceptre he sadly laid down,
And bade an adieu to his glory.
“Since I must confess that my subjects are free.
So well they without me have got on,
I'll give up to Corn, for too plainly I see
That he is the ruler they own and not me.
I'll abdicate here,” says King Cotton, Poor Cotton!
“I'll abdicate here,” says King Cotton.

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 United States License.

An XML version of this text is available for download, with the additional restriction that you offer Perseus any modifications you make. Perseus provides credit for all accepted changes, storing new additions in a versioning system.

hide Places (automatically extracted)

View a map of the most frequently mentioned places in this document.

Sort places alphabetically, as they appear on the page, by frequency
Click on a place to search for it in this document.
Pennsylvania (Pennsylvania, United States) (1)
Napoleon (Ohio, United States) (1)
Mexico (Mexico) (1)
) (Mississippi, United States) (1)

Download Pleiades ancient places geospacial dataset for this text.

hide People (automatically extracted)
Sort people alphabetically, as they appear on the page, by frequency
Click on a person to search for him/her in this document.
Plutus (2)
King Cotton (2)
Fernando Wood (1)
John Wise (1)
Vallandigham (1)
Alexander A. Stephens (1)
Louis Napoleon (1)
Memminger (1)
Meade (1)
Abraham Lincoln (1)
Jeff (1)
Jefferson Davis (1)
Jeff Davis (1)
Johnny Bull (1)
Carl Benson (1)
hide Display Preferences
Greek Display:
Arabic Display:
View by Default:
Browse Bar: