THE LADIES’ WHIG SONG.
Tune — Rosin the Beau,
If e’er I should wish to get married,
And indeed I don’t know but I may,
The man that I give up my hand to
Must be the firm friend of Old Clay.
Must be, &c.
For I am sure I could ne’er love a loco,
No matter how grand he might be.
And the man that could vote for Dick Johnson,
Is not of a taste to suit me.
Is not, &c.
Tom Benton’s too much of a rowdy,
To claim any good man’s support.
And on Jemmy Buchanan’s low wages
The people have made their report.
The people, &c.
John Tyler’s too mean to be thought of,
A circumstance cropt for a man,
By every true Whig he’s regarded,
As only a “flash in the pan.”
As only, &c.
His conduct can no way dishearten,
The Whigs only wait for the day,
To make him another “gone Martin”
And move on with Old Harry Clay.
And move, &c.
Then rouse gallant Whigs to your duty,
And drive all the miscreants away,
Complete what you strove for in forty.
Your watchword be Old Harry Clay.
Your watchword, &c.
A “loco” is a locofoco, that is, a Democrat.
Dick Johnson was Richard M. Johnson, Van Buren’s vice president.
Tom Benton, the rowdy, was Senator Thomas Hart Benton who (in 1813) got into a tavern brawl with future president Andrew Jackson, resulting in Jackson getting shot in the arm.
“Jemmy Buchanan” was future president James Buchanan, AKA “Ten-Cent Jimmy” who once declared that ten cents a day was a decent wage for a working man.
President John Tyler was particularly loathed by Whigs because he had been elected as a Whig, then vetoed Whig legislation.
“Gone Martin” would have been Martin Van Buren, a Democrat, and the Whigs’ bête noire. From the quote marks and italics, I suspect that there’s meant to be understood a reference to Martin Guerre, who famously vanished, then was replaced by an imposter who claimed to be him (even living with Martin’s wife and child for three years). The case of Martin Guerre would have been in the public eye thanks to an 1841 Alexandre Dumas novel that featured it.
What happened “in forty” was the election of William Henry Harrison. (Interestingly, or perhaps not, every Whig to be elected President died in office.)
Here in 1844, Henry Clay of Kentucky was the Whig nominee.
Tomorrow: A Settin’ in the Chair.