Charles Guiteau, Lyric Variant 02


“Charles Guiteau, Lyric Variant 02,” Appalachian State University Libraries Digital Collections, accessed June 17, 2024,

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Charles Guiteau, Lyric Variant 02


This item is part of the I. G. Greer Folksong Collection which consists of more than 300 individual song titles and their variants as collected by Isaac Garfield Greer (1881-1967) from informants, primarily in Ashe, Wilkes and Watauga counties. The collection includes manuscripts, typescript transcriptions produced by Dr. Greer’s clerical staff, and handwritten musical notations. Songs range from traditional Child Ballads, traditional English and Scottish ballads as well as their American variants, to 19th century popular music to musical compositions of local origin.


Ballads--United States
Guiteau, Charles Julius, 1841-1882--Songs and music
Garfield, James A. (James Abram), 1831-1881--Assassination--Songs and music
Presidents--Assassination--United States--Songs and music
Capital punishment--Songs and music

Alternative Title

The Murder of James A, Garfield, Charles Gettau, Charles Guitar, James A, Garfield


W. L. Eury Appalachian Collection, Appalachian State University


Greer, I. G. (Isaac Garfield), 1881-1967







Spatial Coverage


Charles Giteau

I went to see James A. Garfield,
He took me to be his friend.
I shot a bullet in him
Which caused his fatal end.
‘Twas at the big depot
I thought I’d make my `scape
But providence being against me
I found I was too late.

My name is Charles Giteau,
My name I’ll never deny,
`Though I leave my ancient parents
In sorrow for to die,
But little did they think I,
While in my youthful bloom,
Would be taken to the scaffold
To meet my fatal doom.

I tried to play off insane,
But I found it would not do.
The people all being against me,
They proved it was untrue.
The judge he passed the sentence,
The clerk he wrote it down.
On the thirtieth day of June,
I must meet my fatal doom.

My sister came to see me
To bid me a last goodbye.
She threw her eyes around me:
Dear brother, you must die
For the murder of James A. Garfield
The law you must abide.
On the thirtieth day of June
You must meet your fatal doom.

And now I am at the scaffold
To bid you all adieu.
The hangman now is waiting,
It’s a quarter after two.
The black is over my face,
No longer can I see,
But when I am dead and buried
Dear Lord, remember me.

Associated Date


Scholarly Classification

Brown, 249 Randolph, 134 Laws, E 11 Combs, 58

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