The Rainbow

Also known as The Female Captain or The Female Warrior, this tale of a heroic woman taking command of a beleaguered warship came to Grainger at Brigg in 1906, from George Orton of Barrow-on-Humber.

Oh, as we were a-sailing down by the Spanish shore,
Where the guns did rattle and the loud cannons did roar,
There we spied a lofty army, come bearing over the main,
Which caused us to hoist up our topmost sail again.

Oh, our captain says, "Be ready," oh, he says, "My boys, stand true,
To face the Spanish army we lately did pursue
To face the Spanish army come bearing down so wide,
And without a good protection, boys, we'll take the first broadside."

Well, it was broadside to broadside these vessels o'er they went,
A-sinking one another, it was their full intent,
At the very second broadside, our captain he got slain,
And a damsel jumped in his place to give command again.

Well we fought for nearly four hours, for full four hours and more,
Till there was scarce a man on board our gallant ship could steer,
Till there was scarce a man on board could fire off a gun,
And the blood from our decks like the river it did run.

Oh for quarters, for quarters the Spanish lads did cry,
"You've had the best of quarters," this damsel did reply,
"You have had the best of quarters that e'er I can afford,
You must fight, sink, or swim, my boys, or jump overboard."

Oh, now the war is over and we'll take a glass of wine.
You can drink to your true love, and I will drink to mine.
Here's a health unto that damsel who fought all on the main,
She has a lofty, gallant ship, the Rainbow by name.

© Golden Hind Music