Song of the Southern Volunteers, The

DESCRIPTION: "I would not be a conscript a-hiding in the wood; I'd be a volunteer and do my country good. I wouldn't be alone (x3) to weep and moan." Similarly "I wouldn't be a lawyer... I'd rather be a soldier," etc. -- then perhaps shifting to a female soldier!
AUTHOR: unknown
EARLIEST DATE: 1936 (Hudson)
KEYWORDS: Civilwar marriage patriotic soldier work
REFERENCES (3 citations):
Hudson 123, pp. 263-264, "I Would Not Be Alone" (1 text)
Scott-BoA, pp. 221-223, "The Song of the Southern Volunteers" (1 text, 1 tune)

Roud #4502
cf. "I'll Not Marry at All" (form)
NOTES: The extant texts of this song all appear rather messed up. Hudson's text hints at the original: An adaption of "I'll Not Marry at All" in which the singer proclaims his willingness to serve the south -- or, perhaps, a girl proclaims "I would not *marry* a conscript."
In fact, it's possible that both forms existed, then were mixed to produce Hudson's odd gender-bending text, with verses about a conscript, lawyer, doctor, lady/belle, nurse, farmer, and miller.
Scott's song it even more confused; it appears to be a mix of "I Would Not Be a Conscript" and "We Go Walking on the Green Grass" (the latter not to be confused with "Walking on the Green Grass"). It's too complicated for me to disentangle, so I tossed it here.
The original description I wrote of the song is as follows: "'I would not marry a conscript... I'd rather marry a volunteer and do my country good.... We go walking on the green grass, thus, thus, thus....' The girl would rather marry, or even be, a soldier boy, than wed someone who will not volunteer for the South." - RBW
File: SBoA221

Go to the Ballad Search form
Go to the Ballad Index Song List

Go to the Ballad Index Instructions
Go to the Ballad Index Bibliography or Discography

The Ballad Index Copyright 2016 by Robert B. Waltz and David G. Engle.