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The Capstan Chantey "The Anglesey"

San Francisco Maritime National Historical Park

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Hello, I'm Peter Kasin, a park ranger at San Francisco Maritime National Historical Park. Today's sheltered-in chantey was used at the capstan for weighing anchor, meaning raising up the anchor. It's called The Anglesey. Anglesey was the name of a ship. This tells the story of a sailor who is glad to finally leave the ship and retire from going out to sea on a square-rigger. This is his way of saying "take this job and shove it." In one of the verses you'll hear a mention of crackerhash, and that was a sailors' dish where they took hardtack biscuit, and that was a biscuit baked very hard so it would keep, and they would crush it, usually crushing it with a belaying pin, and they would add to it other items from the galley such as lard or pieces of pork and they'd make a hash out of it. The cook was usually not very well-liked. The cook was usually blamed for the quality of the food, and a popular sailors' saying was, well, "God provides the food. The devil provides the cook." Here we go with The Anglesey.

It was one fine day in the month of May an' I was outward bound. I hadn't any tin to pay for gin, so I walked the streets all 'round. My coat was out at the elbows, and I was sore in need, So I shipped as a lit-tle sailor boy on board of the "Angle-sey."

(Chorus): Then no more I'll go to sea, a-cross the Western Ocean A- haulin and a-pul-lin, I never will again, Then no more I'll go to sea, a-cross the Western Ocean For evermore I'll stay on shore, an' go to sea no more!

No more for me the first look-out, no more the wheel I'll take; No more gaff-top'sl tacks I'll shift, nor a-haul til me back does break; No more I'll shout "All's well, sir"! nor pump away for life, But I'll go ashore and get a wife, from on board of the Anglesey.

(Chorus): Then no more I'll go to sea, a-cross the Western Ocean A-haulin' and a-pul-lin, I never will again, Then no more I'll go to sea, a-cross the Western Ocean For evermore I'll stay on shore, an' go to sea no more!

No more will I reef, no more will I furl, square in the crojik yard; No more the brightwork I will scrape with sand and canvas hard; No more up aloft will I fly, with a grease-pot in me hand, But I'll go ashore for evermore, from on board of the Anglesey.

(Chorus): Then no more I'll go to sea, a-cross the Western Ocean A-haulin' and a-pull-lin, I never will again, Then no more I'll go to sea, a-cross the Western Ocean For evermore I'll stay on shore, an' go to sea no more!

No more I'll stand by the royal halyards, nor eat their crackerhash; No soul and body lashins' tie, nor in saltwater wash; No tarring down of backstays, no haul on the lee-fore-brace But I'll pack me bag an' go ashore, from on board of the Anglesey.

(Chorus): Then no more I'll go to sea, a-cross the Western Ocean A-haulin' and a-pul-lin, I never will gain, Then no more I'll go to sea, a-cross the Western Ocean For evermore I'll stay on shore, an' go to sea no more!

Description

"The Anglesey," used at the capstan, tells the story of a sailor who is glad to retire from going out to sea on a square-rigger.