A Swansea Workhouse Christmas poem 1870

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The following poem comes from The Cambrian for 30 December 1870. It is possible that it did originate in the Swansea Workhouse. You can see from the content that many of the inmates were elderly by the 1870s and much of the harsh reputation that workhouses developed was not strictly true in the final years of the nineteenth century. 

Xmas Day is come my Boys

Oh wont we have a spree

Roast Beef for Diner boys

And Curent Cake for tea.


Good tobacco for the men my Boys

How happy we will be.

Snuff for the old women Boys

And fine Gunpowder Tea.


The children they will laugh my Boys

When the Good they see

Aples nuts and cakes they cry

That’s the stuff for me.


We must thank the Guardians Boys

For being so kind to us

They looks to our wants my Boys

And liberel with their Purse.


And we must thank the Master Boys

The mistress and the cook

And give them cheers three my Boys

And we’ll enjoy a smoke.


The doctor and the nurses Boys

They looks to our health

May they spend Meney a Merry Xmas

In happyness and wealth.


And when the day is over Boys

We will all go to rest

And dream of hot Plumb Pudding Boys

And lay cosey in our nest.



The View for Sunday 7 January 2001

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