Life of James B. Rush


Attend good people of each degree,
Awhile, and listen to me,
To warn you all both young and old,
I will my wretched life unfold.
On the fatal tree, a murderer I,
James Blomfield Rush am condemned to die.

James Blomfield Rush is my name,
I have brought myself to grief and shame,
In credit my life I might have passed,
But now, alas! My doom is cast.

In West Norfolk I was bred and born,
In Norwich town I die in scorn,
My career of guilt alas! Is run,
I die at last for the deed I've done.

Since first from virtue's step I did incline,
I step Iy step have sunk into crime,
My heart is bursting while those lines I pen,
I am hated both by God and men.

At Aylsham I a farm did keep,
I employed my time for to tend my sheep,
Like them my heart was free from guile,
Now I'm a murderer base and vile.

While there a lady's heart I gained,
In virtue fair, and Soames was her name,
With her a happy life I led,
But now she's numbered with the dead.

My first disaster is to be learnt,
My hopes were crushed my crops were burnt,
And by people's looks I could plainly see,
I suspected was as an incendiary.

My man was taken for this sad affair,
But to his rescue I did quickly steer,
And for that rescue that I have done,
I was indicted in thirty-one.

In eighteen hundred and forty four,
My father, whose loss I now deplore,
Upon the kitchen floor was stretched,
Where he had met an untimely death.

A gun was lying by his side,
Which had ended all his earthly strife,
But ill-natured people said that I,
Did rob him of his precious life.

Then Emily Sandford who lived with me,
My children's governess used to be,
As her uncle went I to declare,
To see her in Mylne-street, Claremont square.

I took her unto Potash Farm,
Intent on keeping her from harm,
Oh! Would I never had her betrayed,
Or led from virtue that fair maid.

Mr. Jermy did me employ,
The place called Potash-farm to buy,
Instead of which thought short of pelf,
I bought the farm to use myself.

Not being able the whole to pay,
Mr. Jermy to me did say,
Here take the money, but Rush, I say,
You'll pay me on the stated day.

Not being able to pay him his due,
In forty-eight he did me sue,
Which in my mind was unfair play,
So I swore to take his life away.

On November last, the 28th,
The night that sealed poor Jermy's fate,
With my deadly weapons I tell you true,
I did these cruel murders do.

That I was taken you all well know,
And I my trial did undergo
Forget the sad look I never shall,
Of Eliza Chestney the much injured girl.

The trial's over, and I am cast,
The Judge the awful sentence passed,
For one and all they did agree,
That I should die on the fatal tree.

Farewell, vain world, a long farewell,
For hark, I hear the solemn knell,
May God forgive my sins I pray,
Nor condemn me on the judgement day.

BIRT, Printer, 39, Great St. Andrew Street, Seven Dials, London.

( and E.M.A. Hodges Printer, (from Pitt's) Wholesale Toy Warehouse, 31, Dudley Street, Seven Dials.)