The “Swans” War Song – the first club chant from 1913 re-discovered

Staff at Swansea Library have unearthed an incredibly rare document which contains the lyrics to the first specially-written club song. Local Studies Librarian Gwilym Games found what he believes is the only surviving copy of The World of Sport, a magazine produced in 1913 to provide more in-depth coverage of local sporting interests. The first issue from the 7th February 1913 is in very poor condition, but staff were able to scan it. Amid articles on cycling, dog training and other minority sports, there was a report on the Swansea Town Supporters’ Club, and notice of their fund-raising “Smoker”; and the words to the Swans War Song.

The lyrics refer to players of the day, and should be sung to the tune of “The Chocolate Major”. The opening line about the gay crowd heading for the match could be taken in quite a different light today (don’t let the Cardiff fans get hold of it…)

Simon Hurford and Rob Baker have sent us links to the tune “Here Comes the Chocolate Major”. It was written by Bennett Scott and A.J. Mills, and a version sung by G.H. Elliot can be heard on Spotify, and also by following this link: https://www.box.com/s/223be2e275cfc8de8357

Follow the links to other pages on this fascinating story:

To read about the song and its lyrics: Swans War Song

To find out more about the Supporters’ Club in 1913: Supporters’ Club 1913

To learn a bit more about the World of Sport: World of Sport 1913

It doesn’t seem that the World of Sport was very successful – there is no trace of any other issues!

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1 Comment

Filed under 1910s, fans

One response to “The “Swans” War Song – the first club chant from 1913 re-discovered

  1. The Chocolate Major by GH Elliot.

    https://www.box.com/s/223be2e275cfc8de8357

    It’s a great song and courtesy of @charlieconnelly

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