“The Black Ball Line”

Author: unknown
Earliest date: 1914 (Sharp-EFC)
Keywords: shanty sailor work


"I served my time on the Black Ball line, To me way-ay-ay, Rio... Hurrah for the Black Ball line." "The Black Ball ships are good and true" and fast. They will lead you to a "gold mine." The listener is advised to travel to Liverpool and see the Yankees


  1. Hugill, pp. 131-133, "Hooraw for the Blackball Line" (1 text plus several fragments, 3 tunes) [AbEd, pp. 107-108]
  2. Colcord, p. 53, "Black Ball Line, The" (1 text, 1 tune)
  3. Harlow, pp. 105-106, "Black Ball Line, The" (2 texts, 1 tune)
  4. Sharp-EFC, XXIII, p. 26, "Black Ball Line, The" (1 text, 1 tune)
  5. Lomax-ABFS, pp. 489-490, "The Black Ball Line" (1 text, 1 tune)
  7. ADDITIONAL: Captain John Robinson, "Songs of the Chantey Man," a series published July-August 1917 in the periodical _The Bellman_ (Minneapolis, MN, 1906-1919). "Blackball Line" is in Part 2, 7/21/1917.
  8. Roud #2623
  9. BI, LxA489