Memiadluk and Uckaluk Dave Evardson
In eighteen-forty-seven in a place as cold as Hell
I sailed with Captain Parker where them Eskimo’s do dwell.
Pity them poor starving Eskimos
The Truelove out of Hull New Dock, a whaling we were bound,
To Labrador and Baffin Bay and on to Cumberland town.
The Eskimos in Greenland by the Danes were treated well,
But those in British Labrador endure a life of Hell.
For the Eskimos of Greenland, the Danes gave guns and gear,
But those in British Labrador must starve from year to year.
Now Uckaluk was starving, weeping by her mother’s grave,
And the captain being kindly vowed her wretched life to save.
For she was nowt but skin and bone, just fifteen years of age,
And begging off the dock for food who scowled at her in rage.
Now Memiadluk was starving too and pleaded for his life,
Our captain said he’d take him if he’d have her for his wife.
This couple they were married and their bellies soon were full;
In the care of Surgeon Gefney they sailed home with us to Hull.
They were starving when they came on board, caked in dirt and grime,
But they disembarked at Hull New Dock a young couple in their prime.
Here’s a health to Captain Parker and Surgeon Gefney too,
And the Lord preserve the Eskimo and his spear and skin canoe.