The Yellow Rose Of Texas, a traditional folk song, was published September 2, 1858.
During the Texan War of Independence, an indentured servant called Emily D. West was kidnapped by the Mexicans when they looted Galveston. While captive, Emily seduced the President of Mexico, General Sant Anna, who was also the commander of the Mexican forces.
Legend goes that because Sant Anna was so infatuated with her he lowered the guard of the Mexican army. Because of this, Sant Anna's opponent, General Sam Houston, was able to win the Battle of San Jacinto quickly (it is said in minutes) with almost no casualties.
The term "yellow" was used at the time to describe the light skin of people of color. Emily was a mulatto.
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There's a yellow rose in Texas, That I am going to see,
Nobody else could miss her, Not half as much as me.
She cried so when I left her It like to broke my heart,
And if I ever find her, We nevermore will part.
She's the sweetest little rosebud That Texas ever knew,
Her eyes are bright as diamonds, They sparkle like the dew;
You may talk about your Clementine, And sing of Rosalee,
But the YELLOW ROSE OF TEXAS Is the only girl for me.
When the Rio Grande is flowing, The starry skies are bright,
She walks along the river In the quiet summer night:
I know that she remembers, When we parted long ago,
I promise to return again, And not to leave her so. [Chorus]
Oh now I'm going to find her, For my heart is full of woe,
And we'll sing the songs together, That we sung so long ago
We'll play the bango gaily, And we'll sing the songs of yore,
And the Yellow Rose of Texas Shall be mine forevermore. [Chorus]
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