The Ella M. Rudolph



1 Attention all ye fisherman and toilers of the sea
While I relate those lines to you of an awful tragedy,
Which leaves so many families in sorrow to bewail
The loss of sons and husbands caused by the dreadful gale.

2 The Ella M. Rudolph a vessel, and such a clever sea boat too
Her skipper’s name was Blackwood, and eight composed her crew;
A female also was on board, so gaily and bright –
She with the rest did meet her doom on that sad fatal night.

3 The sixth day of December the Rudolph leaved the town
Full loaded with general cargo for Port Nelson she was bound;
With a gentle breeze of southwest winds the schooner sailed along
The sky looked thick and heavy and night was coming on.

4 At five o’clock in the evening through the Tickles she did pass
The threatening of a violent storm was showing by the glass;
When from south-east the wind did veer and storms all through the night –
It was our skipper’s intention to make Catalina light.

5 Not very far out in the bay the schooner did she reach
When the skipper changed his course again from north unto north-east;
Thinking the ship would round the Cape, reach Bonavista Bay
‘Twas under her foresail and jumbo she unfortunately made leeway.

6 Eight fine strong men that very night upon her deck did stand
With piercing eyes and eager hearts all on the look-out for land;
The wind blowed strong, the seas rose high , o what a terrible plight!
The Ella M. Rudolph ended her days on Catalina shores that night.

7 The vessel scarcely struck a rock ‘fore covered with the waves
All of her crew except one man did meet a watery grave;
This poor young chap jumped overboard through blinding snow and drift
By the guiding hands of Providence was hurled into the cliff.

8 He wended his way on up the cliff through blinding sleet and snow –
Over marshes, fields, and valleys not knowing where to go
To look for hospitality and comfort for the night;
When to his surprise before his eyes saw Little Catalina light.

9 ‘Twas early the next morning about the hour of four
After eight long hours of travelling, reached Levi Dalton’s door;
Who kindly answered to his knock, such a sadful sight to see –
A lad stood there with oilclothes on, a miracle for him to see.

10 ‘Come in my lad, come in my lad,’ this kind man he did say,
‘And tell us what has happened and how you came this way.’
The lad was so exhausted, and all that he could say,
‘A schooner lost and all her crew not very far away.’

11 Now with this kindly woman this poor lad did reside
After hot drinks and clothing warm she soon did him revive;
And after rest and medical aid, the tale he told anew –
The sorrowful fate of the Rudolph and the loss of all her crew.

12 This man soon told his neighbours and soon the news was spread
And men before ’twas very long was rising from their beds;
With gaffs and ropes and lanterns on a night so dark and drear
The path was thronged with men and for Brook Cove they did steer.

13 At last they arrived upon the spot but sadly heard no sound –
They searched in vain with daring but no creatures could be found;
When a sadful sight came before their eyes as they stood there next day
To see a body wash ashore all on a heaving wave.

14 This chanced to be the female, one so gaily with fame –
An Abbott girl from Hare Bay, her name was Mary Jane;
And soon with kind and willing hands her body did prepare
And sent along for her burial rites to her mother’s home so dear .

15 But two more bodies still are lying beneath the ocean waves
Waiting for the Saviour’s call on the last great Judgment Day;
When the sea it will give up its dead we’re told by scripture true –
May the Lord have mercy on the souls of the Ella M. Rudolph’s crew.

Citation: Lehr, Genevieve. Come and I Will Sing You, p.55-56w sheet music.

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