"Grab a Root" by Sylvester Rader, 90th OVI, Co. I

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"Grab a Root" by Sylvester Rader, 90th OVI, Co. I


United States -- History -- Civil War, 1861-1865


"Grab A Root"
By Sylvester Rader, 90th OVI, Co. I

While soldiering in the Army of the Cumberland,
Some Johnnies to shoot,
We stubbed our toe, fell down in the mud,
And the boys, hollowed, "Grab a Root!"

The origin of the word we never heard,
Yet, it always seemed to suit,
For, no matter what to you occurred,
They would tell you to "Grab a Root."

The Colonel of the 31st rode a mare-
A scary sort of a brute-
At the Catoosa Springs she threw him,
When one of the boys hollowed, "Grab a Root."

A new recruit was stealing meat,
Because he thought it cute,
But when the guard marched him off to Gen. Cruft,
The boys hollowed, "Grab a Root."

At Ooltewah we were crossing on a log
With a canteen full of old jute,
When we lost our balance and in we went,
And Smith hollowed, "Grab a Root."

A drunken bummer rode a mouse-colored mule-
A bucking son-of-a-galoot-
And when he threw him and nearly broke his neck,
The boys hollowed, "Grab a Root."

A goose hissed at us when we foraged,
As a disloyal old brute,
But when the Major ordered us front in disgrace,
George Harney whispered, "Grab a Root."

Down in Hog-Jaw Valley we heard a gun,
For some one in the distance did shoot.
But at the command, "Attention! I heard a gun,"
Some one remarked, "Grab a Root."

We shot the load from our gun in camp,
When there was positive orders not to shoot;
But as the General was placing us on the General's staff,
The boys hollowed, "Grab a Root."

A dude of a Sergeant got full of beer;
He sang a song he thought was cute,
But at the end of every verse he sang,
The boys hollowed, "Grab a Root."

The Sergeant got mad and wanted to fight,
And finally began talking shoot.
Then he stormed and raved till he foamed at the mouth,
And the boys hollowed, "Grab a Root."

An officer swore it was cowardly to dodge
When the Johnnies too near would shoot,
But when he dropped at a shell passing high in the air,
The boys hollowed, "Grab a Root."






Scott Cameron


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SYLVESTER RADER, 90th OVI, ""Grab a Root" by Sylvester Rader, 90th OVI, Co. I," in Ohio Civil War 150 | Collections & Exhibits, Item #1836, http://www.ohiocivilwar150.org/omeka/items/show/1836 (accessed April 30, 2017).

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