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This song was composed and sung by Elder Abner Vance, under the gallows, about 80 years ago. Given by Rev. A.M. Lunsford, October 14, 1897.


[Published by Request.]

Green are the woods where Sandy flows.

And peace it dwelleth there;

In the valley the bear they lie secure

The red buck roves the knobs.

But Vance no more shall Sandy behold,

Nor drink its crystal waves,

The partial judge pronounced his doom,

The hunter has found his grave.

The judge he said he was my friend

Though Elliott’s life he had saved.

A juryman did I become

That Elliott he might live.

That friendship I have shown to others,

Has never been shown to me;

Humanity it belongs to the brave,

And I hope it remains to me.

‘Twas by the advice of McFarlin

Judge Johnson did the call,

I was taken from my native home

Confined in a stone wall.

My persecutors have gained their request,

Their promise to make good,

For they ofttimes swore they would never rest,

Till they had gained my heart’s blood.

Daniel Horton, Bob and Bill,

A lie against me swore,

In order to take my life away,

That I might be no more.

But I and them together must meet

Where all things are unknown.

And if I’ve shed the innocent blood

I hope there’s mercy shown.

Bright shines the sun on Clinche’s hill,

And soft the west wind blows,

The valleys are covered all over with bloom,

Perfumed with the red rose.

But Vance no more shall Sandy behold,

This day his eyes are closed in death,

His body’s confined in the tomb.

Farewell my friends, my children dear,

To you I bid farewell,

The love I have for your precious souls

No mortal tongue can tell.

Farewell to you my loving wife,

To you I bid adieu,

And if I reach fair Caanan’s shore

I hope to meet with you.

Source: Logan County Banner (Logan, WV), 13 November 1897.