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James K. Polk Lyrics

Artist: They Might Be Giants
Album: Factory Showroom

In 1844, the Democrats were split
The three nominees for the presidential candidate
Were Martin Van Buren, a former president and an abolitionist
James Buchanan, a moderate
Louis Cass, a general and expansionist
From Nashville came a dark horse riding up
He was James K. Polk, Napoleon of the Stump

Austere, severe, he held few people dear
His oratory filled his foes with fear
The factions soon agreed
He's just the man we need
To bring about victory
Fulfill our manifest destiny
And annex the land the Mexicans command
And when the votes were cast the winner was
Mister James K. Polk, Napoleon of the Stump

In four short years he met his every goal
He seized the whole southwest from Mexico
Made sure the tarriffs fell
And made the English sell the Oregon territory
He built an independent treasury
Having done all this he sought no second term
But precious few have mourned the passing of
Mister James K. Polk, our eleventh president
Young Hickory, Napoleon of the Stump


by Meridith on 10/20/2008 3:52am
I love the song! It really helps understand James K. Polk!
by Rob D on 10/30/2008 7:07am
Good call Meridith. It's an awesome song. I hope my students enjoy it when I play it for them...
by l")ark Templar on 11/4/2008 10:02pm
Smart Idea,
Why Don't We Just Make A Song For Each President?

by K on 11/7/2008 6:41am
I hope you paid attention to the historical inaccuracies in the song as well...
by s on 11/16/2008 8:37pm
what inaccuracies???
by Jamie on 12/22/2008 10:45pm
This song is very historically accurate, you're full of it (:
by daftlikejack on 1/7/2009 6:55pm
I really like this song. I can't seem to stop humming it, if only I could remember the lyrics!
by professor presley on 2/6/2009 8:51am
check out the song "the Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo" by Professor Presley for more songs about Manifest Destiny and James Polk
by ExtraordinaryGirl on 2/23/2009 7:11am
I sang this ENTIRE SONG to myself in a history class one time, to get to the "Young Hickory" part for a test we were taking. One of the multiple choice questions was "What was James K. Polk's nickname? I was THE ONLY ONE to get it right. Thanks, TMBG. ;)
by gay ass mickey on 5/5/2009 10:26am
i beat my meat to this
by tomtom on 6/16/2009 4:52am
History Book Club featured a biography of Polk about two years ago and the editorial commentary in the brochure lifted this song almost in its entirety. Obviously a Giants fan.
by mike E. on 9/25/2009 7:19pm
I wish I was James K. Polk...actually I wish I was merely LIKE James K. Polk because he's dead.
by Alex Bobowski on 9/29/2009 8:21pm
I am doing a paper on Polk, and am quoting this as one of my sources. I probably should use some other source, but this song really says it all. I hope that I can add enough padding to make it a six page paper! :P
by lupinella on 10/4/2009 1:03am
Brilliant, fun song!
by fff on 3/29/2010 2:33pm
by keke on 3/29/2010 2:34pm
love it
by fluffleheim on 6/7/2010 6:56pm
my history teacher played it for us in a ppt and now it gets randomly stuck in my head
by sporky on 6/16/2010 7:09pm
I read somewhere is that the only mistake in this song is that Martin Van Buren was a free soiler, not an abolitionist.
by alex john richardson. on 8/15/2010 8:19pm
one of my favorite TMBG songs!
by C.F POLK on 11/10/2010 9:33am
Thank grandpa you rock
by A BOY IN GOVT CLASS on 3/28/2011 1:17pm
^^^^^^^^^^^ he beats his meat to this song. :/
by josmith on 5/19/2011 5:53pm
Ive memorized all the presidents in order. james k polk is one of my favorites
by jjskidz on 5/23/2011 9:19pm
I had to re-visit this for my stepdaughter's night before US history cram session. She usually dislikes any music/lyric reference I suggest (Horton's 1814 for example) BUT not this time --yeah me.) Up next, Frank Black's Calistan(she thinks the bald guy looks funny).
by 1564 on 5/25/2011 2:31pm
by bill on 12/12/2011 9:41pm
by xiiondria stizy on 3/16/2012 12:52pm
this song seem intresting
by never_to_return on 8/29/2012 10:45pm
I'd buy this tune for a dollar, but not if JKP was on that dollar, like he deserves to be. You can't tell, but I just typed "deserved" super quickly with one finger.
by on 12/4/2012 4:43pm
Maybe he means that he uses a mallet in the kitchen to tenderize steak, and that he wields the impliement in time to the song.

Just a thought.
by Minecraftcaleb on 3/14/2013 12:18pm
Nice tune to listen to on Thursdays it cheers me up.
by Robert Francis on 7/26/2013 12:51am
I saw TMBG in concert about 10 years ago and my ciysub n I kept shouting out requests 4 them to play this, they finally pointed 2 us, and did. He was by far our best 1 term president.
by Matthew downs on 3/27/2018 6:52am
I love they might be giants, but why glorify this asshole slave owner?

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