Come, stack arms, men! Pile on the rails,
Stir up the camp-fire bright;
No matter if the canteen fails,
We’ll make a roaring night.
Here Shenandoah brawls along,
There burly Blue Ridge echoes strong,
To swell the brigade’s rousing song
Of “Stonewall Jackson’s Say.”

We see him now, — the old slouched hat
Cocked o’er his eye askew;
The shrewd, dry smile, the speech so pat,
So calm, so blunt, so true.
The “Blue-Light Elder” knows ’em well;
Says he, “That’s Banks, — he’s fond of shell;
Lord save his soul! we’ll give him” — well,
That’s “Stonewall Jackson’s way.”

Silence! ground arms! kneel all! caps off!
Old Blue-Light’s going to pray.
Strangle the fool that dares to scoff!
Attention! it’s his way.
Appealing from his native sod,
In forma pauperis to God,—
“Lay bare Thine arm; stretch forth Thy rod!
Amen!” That’s “Stonewall’s way.”

He’s in the saddle now. Fall in!
Steady! the whole brigade!
Hill’s at the ford cut off — we’ll win
His way out, ball and blade!
What matter if our shoes are worn?
What matter if our feet are torn?
“Quick-step! we’re with him before morn!”
That’s “Stonewall Jackson’s way.”

The sun’s bright lances rout the mists
Of morning, and, by George!
Here’s Longstreet struggling in the lists,
Hemmed in an ugly gorge.
Pope and his Yankees, whipped before,
“Bay’nets and grape!” hear Stonewall roar;
“Charge, Stuart! Pay off Ashby’s score!”
In “Stonewall Jackson’s way.”

Ah! Maiden, wait and watch and yearn
For news of Stonewall’s band!
Ah! Widow, read, with eyes that burn,
That ring upon thy hand.
Ah! Wife, sew on, pray on, hope on;
Thy life shall not be all forlorn;
The foe had better ne’er been born
That gets in “Stonewall’s way.”


—By J. W. Palmer


“In September, 1862, I found myself at the glades Hotel, at Oakland, on the line of the Baltimore and Ohio Railroad, and in that part of Allegany County, Maryland, which is now known as Garrett county. … I wrote the ballad of ‘Stonewall Jackson’s Way’ with the roar of those guns in my ears.”

—J. W. Palmer quoted in The Photographic History of The Civil War, p. 86.

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