All on the Plains of Mexico


COLLECTED FROM GEORGE PATTISON

ALL ON THE PLAINS OF MEXICO

Aka OH! SANTI ANNA

George Pattison
Cape de Couedie Lighthouse
Kangaroo Island
South Australia
4 Dec 1924 (and 1941)

Clive Carey SS415

We’re outward bound from Liverpool,
Away, Santiana!
Oh the sails are set and the hatches full,
All along the plains of Mexico.

In Mexico where they land lies low,
There ain’t no snow and the whalefish blow.

Them Spanish gals I do adore
They all drink whiskey and ask fer more.

In Mexico I long to be.
Wid a tight-waisted gal all on my knee

Old General Taylor he ran away,
Santiana he gained the day.

So heave away for Mexico.
For Mexico where the whalefish blow.

A windlass shanty, extremely popular with Merchant Jack and one of the three work-songs rope din by whalemen to lighten their pulley hauling. Pattison provided two titles but the first is a line from the chorus.

One assumes Pattison learnt this off a whaler. The figure whom this shanty is woven was Antonio Lopez de Santa Anna, who lived from 1795 to 1876 and was the last president of Mexico prior to the annexation of California, New Mexico and Texas by the USA. Santa Anna defeated the Americans under General Taylor at the Battle of Molina del Rey.