Newspaper History presents media sourced from a United States newspaper dating back 108 years.

  • The Good Old Rebel

    From the Richmond Times Dispatch, June 2, 1915. By Innes Randolph.

    [The following verses, which were set to music, and formed one of the favorite songs of the generation now nearly gone, were written almost immediately after the close of the Civil War, when the South was in the throes of reconstruction, and when an oath of allegiance and consequent pardon were prerequisite to the rights of citizenship.]

    Oh, I’m a good old Rebel,
        Now that’s just what I am;
    For this “fair Land of Freedom”
        I don’t care a dam.
    I’m glad I fit against it—
        I only wish we’d won,
    And I don’t want no pardon
        For anything I’ve done.

    I hates the Constitution,
        This great Republic, too;
    I hates the Freedmen’s Buro,
        In uniforms of blue.
    I hates the nasty eagle,
        With all his brag and fuss;
    The lyin’ thievin’ Yankees,
        I hates ‘em wuss and wuss.

    I hates the Yankee Nation
        And everything they do;
    I hates the Declaration
        Of Independence, too.
    I hates the glorious Union,
        ’Tis dripping with our blood;
    I hates the striped banner—
        I fit it all I could.

    I followed old Mars’ Robert
        For four year, near about,
    Got wounded in three places,
        And starved at Pint Lookout.
    I cotched the roomatism
        A-campin’ in the snow,
    But I killed a chance of Yankees—
        I’d like to kill some mo’.

    Three hundred thousand Yankees
        Is stiff in Southern dust;
    We got three hundred thousand
        Before they conquered us.
    They died of Southern fever
        And Southern steel and shot;
    I wish it was three millions
        Instead of what we got.

    I can’t take up my musket
        And fight ‘em now no more,
    But I ain’t agoin’ to love ‘em,
        Now that is sartin sure.
    And I don’t want no pardon
        For what I was and am;
    I won’t be reconstructed
        And I don’t care a dam.