Mudcat Café message #36214 The Mudcat Café TM
Thread #6252   Message #36214
Posted By: Peter Stanley (Bojangles)
28-Aug-98 - 04:24 AM
Thread Name: Origins: The Ballad of Soapy Smith (Al Oster)
Subject: The ballad of Soapy Smith
Does anyone know the origin or history of this ballad. I kow most of the words and have been told that Soaby was a nofictional scumbag who fleeced prospectors and miners of their gold and supplies leaving them to die in the frozen wilderness. I was taught much of the song by an Athbascan indian, and it went:

He came up to Alaska from the western USA,
Found himself in Scagway one cold December day
A deck of cards was in his hand gambling was his game.
Gambling made him famous, Soapy Smith was his name.
He walked into and old saloon in the northern part of town,
Said he had a speech to make and the people gathered round.
He climbed upon an old soapbox and loudly made it known,
That he planned to run this town and call it all his own.