Row, Bullies, Row

(Roll, Julia, Roll; Liverpool Judies)

The choruses in the multitude versions of this song take some combination of "row" and "roll", "Julia" or "bullies". Julia, of course, is the name of a ship. A Nova Scotia variant runs "To me roll, roll, Julia, roll". Doerflinger notes that Gordon's Adventure Magazine used the verses in the shanty "A Long Time Ago" and that David W. Bone published an older, packet-ship version in Capstan Bars. Doerflinger's own variant comes from Captain Henry E. Burke of Lunenburg, Nova Scotia.

Stan Hugill says this Liverpool forebitter was popular enough to be used at the capstan. "Another version is based on a homeward passage from Frisco to the Bramley-Moore dock, Liverpool, by way of Cape Horn". In Hugill's version of Liverpool Judies, a packet ship sailor meets a New York crimp offering free liquor if he'll leave the Line. New York, after all, was a common jumping off point for half-starved sailors. But even though the sailor refuses the job, he wakes to find he's been drugged and shanghai'd, shipped off on a Southbound ship.