Roane County Prison

In the beautiful hills in the mists of Roane County
There’s where I have roamed for many long years
There’s where my heart’s been tendin most ever
There’s where the first step of misfortune I made

It’s about thirty years when I courted and married
Armanda Gilbraith I’d soon call my wife
My brother he stabbed me for some unknown reason
Just three month’s later I’d taken Tom’s life

I was captured and tried in the village of Kingston
Not a man in that county would speak one kind word
When the jury came in with the verdict next mornin’
A lifetime in prison was the words that I heard

When the train pulled out poor Mother stood weepin’
And sister she sat all alone with a sigh
And the last words I heard was “Willy God bless you”
Was “Willy God bless you God bless you goodbye”

In the scorching hot sand of the foundry I’m workin’
Toiling and working my poor life away
They’ll measure my grave on the banks of old Cumberland
Just as soon as I finish the rest of my days

Poort Martha was grave, but Corey was better
There’s better and worse, although you may see
Boys when you write home from this prison in Nashville
Place one of my songs in your letter for me