’Twas in the year of 1892, and on the 24th of September,
Which the inhabitants of Dundee will long remember,
The great Life·Boat Demonstration,
Which caused a great sensation.
Such a sight was really magnificent to see,
The like was never witnessed in the City of Dundee,
To see so many trades and bodies all in rotation,
It certainly filled the spectators’ minds with admiration.
The Mars boys were there with their band,
Leading the van, which looked very grand ,
And there were various trades and bodies following behind,
With numerous beautiful banners waving in the wind.
There were a body of Sailors all in a row,
And Firemen, Brassfounders, and Operative Masons also,
Besides Carpenters and Joiners, and Manchester Oddfellows,
Also Boilermakers and Blacksmiths that can blow the bellows.
There were also Irish Foresters and Mr Lennie’s Boys,
And Shepherds, and Hammermen that can make a noise;
Also Free Gardeners, Pastry Bakers, and Shipwrights,
Besides Bolton Oddfellows, Tailors and Rechabites.
There were Mill and Factory Workers there of every degree,
And Boot and Shoemakers, a pleasant sight. to see,
And Pattern Makers, and Painters, most beautiful to he seen,
All marching in the procession towards the Magdalen Green.
There were Engineers, Plasterers and Bakers also,
And Grimond’s Boys, and Sailmakers, which made a great show,
Along with the A.O. Foresters, and a model Lifeboat,
With their beautiful banners in the air afloat.
The Bakers looked well in red caps and white aprons, I must confess,
And were observed by the sightseers for their tidiness,
And amongst the spectators caused great admiration,
Because they bore several striking features in the Demonstration:
Such as a big Loaf of over fifty pounds,
And the cheers of the spectators had no bounds,
When they saw it held aloft along with a sheaf of corn,
They declared they never saw the like since they were born.
And according to the spectators’ own confession,
The Life-Boat Samuel Shawcross was the greatest show in the procession,
Drawn by eight beautiful brown horses, belonging the Messrs Wordie & Co.,
Which inspired the hearts of the spectators as onward they did go.
And along the route it received ovation after ovation,
Because the magnificent sight caused quite a sensation;
And from the spectators showers of coppers followed it,
All willingly subscribing their mite as they thought most fit.
And as for Whitehall Crescent and Whitehall Street,
It was an imposing sight and quite a treat;
And the money-collectors were running into the thickest of the crowd,
Rattling their boxes and shouting aloud.
Come, good people, with your coppers, and man the Life-Boat,
While along the line the banners were waving in the air afloat;
And the windows and balconies with spectators were fully occupied,
And never have the inhabitants of Dundee such a sight espied.
The Pipes did skirl, and the Bands did play
The Death of Nelson and the Bay of Biscay,
And the Hearts of Oak and the White Squall,
But the Red, White, and Blue surpassed them all.
While the Raging Seas, varied now and then by Scotland Yet,
Not forgetting Pullar’s Band which·certainly was a treat;
The music they discoursed from their famous Band
ls now well-known throughout Scotland.
The Dundee Artillery and Rifle Bands were as usual to the front,
Discoursing high class music, as they wont;
And the Bands of the Bowbridge Boys were delightful to hear,
Also the Mars Boys, and along the route they received many a cheer.
And, in conclusion, I most earnestly pray
That God will protect the mariners by night and by day;
May He protect them on land, and while afloat,
And send them subscriptions to support the Life-Boat!
Oh! think on the mariner while on the briny deep,
Good people, every night, when ye lie down to sleep;
Think of the tempest-tossed mariner while on the sea,
And pray to God every night for his safety.