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When First Unto This Country A Stranger I Came - Lyrics

When first unto this country, a stranger I came
I courted a fair, young maid and Nancy was her name
I courted her for love, but love I couldn't obtain
Do you think I've any reason or right to complain?

I rode to see my Nancy, I rode both day and night
I courted dearest Nancy, my own heart's true delight
I rode to see my Nancy, I rode both day and night
Till I spied a fine stallion, both plump lookin' and white

Sheriff's men, they'd followed and overtaken me
They took me away to the penitentiary
They took me to the jailhouse and then they shoved me in
They shaved off my head and they cleared off my chin

They beat me and they banged me, they fed me on dry beans
Till I wished to my own true heart I'd never been a thief
With hands in my pockets and the hat sit on so bold
And a robe of many colors, like Jacob's of old

When first unto this country, a stranger I came
I courted a fair, young maid, Nancy was her name

Writer(s): traditional

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