Music > Songs

Shenandoah

<a href="http://balladofamerica.bandcamp.com/track/shenandoah">Shenandoah by Matthew Sabatella and the Rambling String Band</a>

About Shenandoah

Until the nineteenth century only adventurers who sought their fortunes as trappers and traders of beaver fur ventured as far west as the Missouri River. Most of these men were loners who became friendly with, and sometimes married, Native Americans.

Shenandoah is said to have originated with French voyageurs traveling down the Missouri River. The lyrics tell the story of a trader who fell in love with the daughter of an Algonquian chief, Shenandoah. American sailors heading down the Mississippi River picked up the song and made it a capstan shanty that they sang while hauling in the anchor.

Lyrics to Shenandoah

Shenandoah

O Shenandoah, I long to hear you Away, you rolling river O Shenandoah, I long to hear you Away, I'm bound away 'Cross the wide Missouri

Missouri, she's a mighty river Away, you rolling river The Indians camp along her borders Away, I'm bound away 'Cross the wide Missouri

The white man loved an Indian maiden Away, you rolling river With notions his canoe was laden Away, I'm bound away 'Cross the wide Missouri

O Shenandoah, I love your daughter Away, you rolling river For her I've crossed the rolling water Away, I'm bound away 'Cross the wide Missouri

Seven long years I courted Sally Away, you rolling river Seven more I longed to have her Away, I'm bound away 'Cross the wide Missouri

Farewell, my dear, I'm bound to leave you Away, you rolling river O Shenandoah, I'll not deceive you Away, I'm bound away 'Cross the wide Missouri

Download Shenandoah

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Video of Shenandoah

Part of this song is featured in the Ballad of America video overview.

Compact Disc with Shenandoah

This song is available on the compact disc:
Ballad of America Volume 1: Over a Wide and Fruitful Land
Shenandoah is on the CD Ballad of America Volume 1: Over a Wide and Fruitful Land

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