Advance Whigs

Anti-Annexation Procession


Air — “Boatman’s dance.

Come Whigs prepare to enter the chase,
We can beat any man of the Loco race,
We beat them in forty, we can beat them more,
And use up their party in forty.four.

Advance Whigs, advance,
Your country’s cause advance,
And never rest a day, ’till Henry Clay
The White House is adorning.
Heigho, to the polls we’ll go,
And vote for the Western Statesman O.
Heigho, to the polls we’ll go,
And vote for the Western Statesman O.

In forty we sang them out of tune,
And whipt them with that same old coon;
For Henry Clay the good and true,
We’ve nought but voting now to do.

Advance Whigs, &c.

There’s James K. Polk to freemen callous,
May go along with two-faced Dallas,
With MARKLE we’ll make Pennsylvany,
As good a state for Clay as any.

Advance Whigs, &c.

The will of the people will soon be told,
And Matty will remain at Lindenwold,
We’ll show the Locos very soon,
They cannot kill that same Old Coon.

Advance Whigs, &c.


The Loco Race refers to the Locofocos, who were a faction of the Democrats.  The Whigs pretended that the Democrats were all Locofocos.

We beat them in forty — the election of 1840, when Tyler and Tippecanoe won.  Victory was short-lived.  William Henry “Old Tippecanoe” Harrison died a month after taking office, leaving  “His Accidency,” “the traitor Tyler” in the White House, vetoing Whig bills.  Tyler got thrown out of the party.

“Use up” is an Americanism.  Today it mostly refers to supplies (e.g. “Do we have more toothpaste?  This tube is used up.”)  In the 1840s people, political parties, books, plays, and anything else that could be exhausted, a failure, or otherwise useless could be “used up.”

Henry Clay, “the Great Compromiser,” “the Western Statesman,” “The Western Star,” “the Same Old Coon,” had been serving in various political post for a coon’s age.   He served as Secretary of State under John Quincy Adams.  He represented Kentucky in both the US Senate and US House of Representatives (where he also served as Speaker of the House).  A drinker, a gambler, a duelist, and a slave-holder (Richard M. Johnson came right out and said Clay was having sex with his slaves), Clay held many contradictions.  Abraham Lincoln, a Whig himself, considered Clay  the “ideal of a great man.”

Clay’s second run for president was in 1832 as a National Republican.  Another National Republican was Congressman Davy Crockett (who went on to die at the Alamo in 1836).  This may shed a new light on Crockett’s famous coonskin cap.

Polk, the Democratic candidate, was “to freemen callous,” in that he supported slavery.  Dallas, although personally pro-abolition, was two-faced for the same reason.

Joseph Markle was the Whig candidate for governor of Pennsylvania (can you tell this was a Philadelphia song book?)  It turned out that “Pennsylvany” was as good a state for Clay as any: Clay lost there, too.

“Matty” is Martin Van Buren; Lindenwold was Van Buren’s estate in New York.


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