"Fiddler's Green"  
19th Century Irish Composition
Synthesized by UnKnown Artist

The Outpost Log indicates that you reported:
Time:       Date:
Global Traffic Image
Radiating Antenna Locations "OnLine" In Last 10 Minutes
Click On Global Traffic Image To Display Statistics
Thanks For Visiting The OutPost

1st Cavalry Division
  Fiddler's Green, The CavalryMen's Poem  

The first appearance of the poem, entitled "Fiddlers' Green", (in published form) was in a 1923 Cavalry Journal. Its origin and author is unknown. Although historical research indicates that it may have originated in Ireland, it was believed to have found roots in the United States Cavalry Units in the post Civil War period and was first sung by the troopers of the 6th and 7th Cavalry Regiments.

1st Cavalry Division - Fiddler's Green, The CavalryMen's Poem

"As one of the Army's two on-call heavy contingency force divisions, the First Team has an on-order mission to deploy to a designated contingency area of operations by sea, air or land, conduct reception, staging, onward movement and integration; and on order, conduct combat operations and redeployment."

Hover Mouse Pointer over text area below to pause scrolling.

The CavalryMen's Poem - Fiddler's Green

[Verse 1]

Halfway down the trail to Hell
In a shady meadow green
Are the Souls of all dead Troopers camped
Near a good old-time canteen,
And this eternal resting place is
know as Fiddlers' Green

[Verse 2]

Marching past straight through to Hell
The Infantry are seen
Accompanied by the Engineers,
Artillery and Marines,
For none but the shades of Cavalrymen
Dismount at Fiddlers' Green

[Verse 3]

Though some go curving down the trail
To seek a warmer scene,
No Trooper ever gets to Hell
Ere he's emptied his canteen.
And so rides back to drink again
With friends at Fiddlers' Green

[Verse 4]

And so when man and horse go down
Beneath a sabre keen,
Or on roaring charge of fierce melee
You stop a bullet clean.
And the hostiles come to get your scalp
Just empty your canteen,
And put your pistol to your head
And go to Fiddlers' Green.


Fiddler's Green is a legendary imagined afterlife, where there is perpetual mirth, a fiddle that never stops playing, and dancers who never tire. Its origins are obscure, although some point to the Greek myth of the "Elysian Fields" as a potential inspiration. In general, historical data, referencing Fiddler's Green refers to both the sailor's and cavalry's paradise. The Oxford English Dictionary, 2nd Edition (OED2) has a citation from 1825 as the sailor's paradise. Since the 19th century, British sailors have called the traditional heaven of mariners Fiddler's Green, "a place of unlimited rum and tobacco."

Old seamen are such notorious yarn spinners that it is difficult to know which of their stories to believe about Fiddler's Green. Some say that an old salt who is tired of seagoing should walk inland with an oar over his shoulder. When he come to a pretty little village deep in the country, and people ask him what he is carrying, he will know he has found Fiddler's Green. The people will give him a seat in the sun outside the village inn, with a glass of grog that refills itself every time he drains the last drop and a pipe forever smoking with fragrant tobacco. From then onwards he has nothing to do but enjoy his glass and pipe, and watch the maidens dancing to the music of a fiddler on the village green.

Many believe that the origin and author of Fiddler's Green may have originated by the 5th Royal Irish Lancers who trace their origin back to 1689 when a cavalry formation known as Wynne's Regiment of Enniskillen Dragoons was formed by the then governor James Wynne. Although there no evidence that the Irish Lancers appropriated the paradise and incorporated it into a poem that emigrated to the US with its members, or whether the paradise and poem are of US origin.

The cavalry paradise reference seems to be associated with the 7th US Cavalry from the post Civil War era and the Indian Wars period (circa 1860-1870). Now, there is a link between the 7th US Cavalry and Ireland. Many troopers of the 7th Cavalry were of Irish origin, and the 7th Cavalry's own insignia has the phrase "Garryowen" on it. "Garryowen" is a derivative of the Irish Gaelic Garraí Eóin which means Owen's Garden. Owen's Garden was a commons (open field) in Limerick, Ireland that gave rise to a drinking ballad of the same name. The 5th Royal Irish Lances, an Irish cavalry unit, used that drinking ballad.

The story of Fiddler's Green was first published in the 1923 volume of the Cavalry Journal. According to this article, it was inspired by a story told by Captain "Sammy" Pearson at a campfire in the Medicine Bow Mountains of Wyoming. Common usage also seems to hold this view. as included in John Connally's (Ireland) song from circa 1960 and the Stereophonic's (Welsh Band) song from late 1990's. Fiddler's Green is listed sometimes as a poem and other times as a cavalry prayer.

It is still used by modern cavalry units to memorialize the deceased. The name has had other military uses. Fiddler's Green was an artillery Fire Support Base in Military Region III in Vietnam in 1972 occupied principally by elements of 2nd Squadron, 11th Armored Cavalry. Today, in the heart of the Helmand River Valley, in Helmand Province, Afghanistan, the US Marine Corps operates a firebase (FB) named Fiddler's Green.

As you journey through the history of the 1st Cavalry Division and its assigned elements, you may find it interesting enough to send a message to your friends and extend them an invitation for the opportunity to review the rich history of the Division. We have made it easy for you to do. All that is required is for you to click on the Push Button below, fill in their eMail addresses and send.

The TITLE and URL of this WebSite are automatically read, formatted and entered into your standard eMail form.
Note - The eMail Message is processed and transmitted On-Line to the addressee(s) via your Internet Provider.
Copyright © 2002, Cavalry Outpost Publications ®

Cavalry Outpost Publications Logo 14 Oct '99
Need a gift for an Alumni of the 1st Cavalry Division?

eMail Your WebSite Comments.

Return to "MyOwnPages"©.

Copyright © 1996, Cavalry Outpost Publications ® and Trooper Wm. H. Boudreau, "F" Troop, 8th Cavalry Regiment (1946 - 1947). All rights to this body of work are reserved and are not in the public domain, or as noted in the bibliography. Reproduction, or transfer by electronic means, of the History of the 1st Cavalry Division, the subordinate units or any internal element, is not permitted without prior authorization. Readers are encouraged to link to any of the pages of this Web site, provided that proper acknowledgment attributing to the source of the data is made. The information or content of the material contained herein is subject to change without notice.

Revised 12 Jan '13 SpellChecked