A Tea Party Ballad

Index: Tea Leaves - A Collection of East India Co. Letters, 1773 

Just by beauteous Boston lying

    On the gently swelling flood;

Without Jack or streamers flying,

    Three ill-fated tea-ships rode.


Just as glorious Sol was setting,

    On the wharf, a numerous crew—

Sons of Freedom, fear forgetting,

    Suddenly appeared in view.


Armed with chisel, axe and hammer,—

    Weapons new for warlike deed;

Towards the herbage-freighted vessels,

    They approached with dauntless speed.


O'er their heads aloft in mid sky,

    Three bright angel forms were seen;

This was Hampden,—that was Sidney,

    With fair Liberty between.


Soon they cried, "Your foes you'll banish,

    Soon the glory shall be won;

Nor shall setting Phœbus vanish,

    Ere the matchless deed be done!"


Quick as thought the ships were boarded,

    Hatches burst and chests displayed;

Axe and hammers help afforded,—

    What a glorious crash they made!


Quick into the deep descended,

    Cursed weed of China's coast;

Thus at once our fears were ended,—

    Freemen's rights shall ne'er be lost!