This is one of those ubiquitous tunes which was popular with the American people for at least half-a-century -- popping up in all sorts of places -- as the vehicle for political campaign songs (at least eight of them); for alcoholic reform (though in its original version, it is a drinking song); for the unofficial state song of Washington; for a Civil War song; for a Southern folk hymn; and for a comic opera air. It is a captivating tune of Irish origin introduced in the 1830's as a rolicking drinking song.
Lyrics as reprinted ibid., pp. 164-165.
I live for the good of my nation,
My sons are all growing low,
I hope that my next generation
Will resemble old Rosin, the Beau.
I've travel'd this country all over,
And now to the next I will go:
For I know that good quarters await me,
To welcome old Rosin, the Beau.
When I'm dead and laid out on the counter,
The people all making a show,
Just sprinkle plain whiskey and water
On the corpse of old Rosin, the Beau.
I'll have to be buried, I reckon,
And the ladies will all want to know,
And they lift up the lid of my coffin,
Saying, "Here lies old Rosin, the Beau."
Then shape me out two little donochs [sic],
Place one at my head and my toe,
And do not forget to scrtach on it
The name of old Rosin, the Beau.
Then let those six trusty good fellows,
Oh! let them all stand in a row,
And take down that big bellied bottle,
And drink to old Rosin, the Beau.