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The Battle of the Enterprise and the Boxer - 1813

Composed by: Charles Ipcar ©6/13/13

Tune: traditional

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There was a saucy British brig,
The Boxer was her name,
She plundered all, both great and small,
About the Gulf of Maine.
It was the year eighteen thirteen,
September the fifth day,
'Board Enterprise was great surprise
At the news which came our way…

At the news which came our way, brave boys,
At the news which came our way;
'Board Enterprise was great surprise,
At the news which came our way.

The Boxer she'd been sighted,
Off Pemaquid did lie;
"Slip the cable! We're on our way!" Capt. Burrows he did cry;
As we drew near the Boxer,
Bold Burrows he did say,
"Load and run out every gun!
We'll show them Yankee play!" (REF)

When our first broadside struck their brig,
It caused them all to wonder;
Capt. Blyth did lose his life,
As her masts came down like thunder;
Then Capt. Burrows he was struck,
Received his mortal wound,
But he kept the deck till on their wreck
The Boxer's flag came down. (REF)

So the bruised and battered Boxer
Was towed to Portland Town;
And all did cheer as we drew near
Till they heard Burrows was struck down;
So here's a toast to Burrows,
And here's a toast for Blyth,
"For your nation's pride you fought and died,
With honor in the strife!" (REF)

And as you pass by their graves,
In the evening light,
Will you recall those who did fall
All in our Nation's fight?
For now they lie side by side,
By Munjoy Hill they sleep;
No cannon's roar nor sounds of war,
Disturb their slumber deep.

Disturb their slumber deep, brave boys,
Disturb their slumber deep;
No cannon's roar nor sounds of war,
Disturb their slumber deep.

Header Graphic: Battle between the Brig USS Enterprise and the Brig HMS Boxer, September 5, 1813, painted by John Bentham-Dinsdale (1927-2008), courtesy of Vallejo Marine Gallery, Newport Beach, California.

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I composed this ballad for the 200th anniversary of the battle between these two warships in the War of 1812. The tune is a traditional nautical one. After the battle both captains were brought back to Portland, Maine, and buried together in the Eastern Cemetery at the foot of Munjoy Hill.

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