“The Groves of Blackpool”


"Now de war, dearest Nancy, is ended." The Cork City Militia return home to a grand reception and local brew. Their band plays "Boyne Water" and "Croppies Lie Down." It's good to be back among the tanners and glue-boilers "in de Groves of de Pool"


The text mimics the local accent by replacing "th" by "d" with occasional other translations ("because" becomes "bekase," "pretty" becomes "purty," "murder" becomes "murther," "educated" becomes "edicated," ....).

Moylan: "A song from the loyalist side ... commemorates the activities of the North Cork Militia who became notorious, during the period when Wexford was under martial law, for the enthusiasm and brutality with which they carried out their duties." Moylan quotes Sparling's caracterization (from _Irish Minstrelsy_ p. 504): "In 1798 Milliken was unenviably notorious for 'zeal and efficiency' as a yeoman."

Croker-PopularSongs: "The Cork Militia were especially Orange. They suffered severely in the Rebellion of 1798...."

Croker believes the last verse - a toast to the tanners and glue-boilers "in de Groves of de Pool" - is the work of John Lander rather than "honest Dick Millikin." - BS

According to the brief biography in Kathleen Hoagland, editor, One Thousand Years of Irish Poetry (New York, 1947), p. 791, Milliken (or Millikin, as she spells it) lived and died in Cork; she gives his death date as 1815. He is known almost exclusively for his poem "The Groves of Blarney," which if nothing else had quite a vogue in the broadside press; see its entry. In this index, see also "The River Lee." - RBW


  1. Moylan 61, "The Groves of Blackpool" (1 text, 1 tune)
  2. Croker-PopularSongs, pp. 168-173, "The Groves of Blackpool" (1 text)
  3. BI, Moyl061


Alternate titles: “De Groves of de Pool”
Author: Richard Alfred Milliken (1767-1816) (source: Moylan)
Earliest date: 1839 (Croker-PopularSongs)