She left St. Pierre on the tenth of May, Prince Edward Island bound,
For the winter's done, and there's very little rum in the harbours and the towns,
And the fishermen watch for the ‘dirty sail' as they trawl on Tracadie Bay,
And they give a great shout when then finally pick her out,
"Nellie Banks is on her way!"
There's Captain Lillington at the helm, he comes from Newfoundland,
With a bottle of brandy always on the deck, and an extra case on hand.
He's drunk, and he holds a leeward stance, but he sails the schooner true,
And the government cutters quickly fall astern
When he shows what the ‘Banks' can do.
There's rum in the hold of the Nellie J. Banks, Prince Edward Island bound,
Late on the night when the moon don't shine, you'll find her off Georgetown.
Well the government cutters, they hug the shore with glass upon ‘Rum Row',
For they know Nellie Banks is out upon the bay, and a runner is sure to show,
And Lillington keeps her four miles out, for the boundary it is three,
But late in the night with the cutters out of sight,
She slips into a lee.
On an August night by the pale moonlight with the ‘Banks' off Short Point shore,
A shot rang out, and a man began to shout "Heave to, or we'll fire more!"
And the morning light saw a terrible sight as the ‘Banks' was towed away
No more would the Nellie J. Banks run rum,
No more would the fishermen say...
Yes, there's rum in the hold of the Nellie J. Banks, we saw her sail today.
You'll find her on the night when the moon don't shine three miles off Tracadie Bay.