On one cold and rainy night I was sitting in the light
Of my switchman’s shack on my post on the mountain
The storm was pretty bad and the telegraph was dead
And it was just eleven hours ’til the dawning.
Then much to my surprise the telegraph jumped back to life
As I read the code I thought could this be true
A train was on it’s way headed up the mountain grade
But she didn’t have a captain or a crew.
At the other switch they tried to put her on the mountainside
But she kept on coming up the mountain grade
I quickly doused the light to try to see into the night
Maybe I could spot her headlight in the rain.
She was pounding down the road I could hear her whistle blow
And I thought lord what a high and mournful sound
Then the telegraph beganThere’s a cave-in at the mine
And a hundred men are buried beneath the ground
But Lord she’s coming now I see around the bend and straight at me
And her boiler’s glowing red as coal in hell
The headlight’s switching wide searching all the mountainside
But the only sound she’s making is the wail
Then I recognize the train by the number and the name
It’s the Miner’s Silver Ghost Old 41
Then she vanished up the track by the lonely switchman’s shack
Like a mother who is looking for her son
Now I recall the story of the train that went to glory
Over fifty years ago on this same night
She was stealing for the cave-in there were men that needed saving
But she missed the curve and trestle near the mine.
Now every now and then you’ll hear her whistle on the wind
If the mountain slides and many men are lost
It’s the high and lonely wailing searching up and down the mountain
The train they call the call the Miner’s Silver Ghost