I met a little girl in Knoxville,
A town we all know well.
And every Sunday evenin',
Out in her home I dwell.
We went to take an evenin' walk
About a mile from town.
I picked a stick up off the ground
And I knocked that fair girl down.
She fell down on her bended knees
And mercy she did cry.
"Oh really dear, don't kill me yet,
I'm unprepared to die..."
She never spoke another word,
I only beat her more
Until the ground around me
With her blood did flow.
I took her by her golden curls And I dragged her round and round,
Throwing her into the river
That flows through Knoxville town...
"Go down, go down Knoxville girl!
With your dark and roven eyes...
Yeah, go down, go down Knoxville girl!
You can never be my bride."
I started back to Knoxville,
Got there about midnight.
My mother she was worried
And woke up in a fright
"Say there son, what have you done
To bloody up your clothes?"
I told my anxious mother
I was bleedin' of my nose.
I called for me a-candle
And I called for me a-bed
And I called for me a-handkerchief
To bind my achin' head.
I rolled and trashed the whole night through
Oh, horrors I did see:
The devil stood at the foot of my bed
Pointin' his finger at me.
They carried me down to Knoxville
And put me in a cell.
My friends all tried to get me out
But none could post my bail.
I'm here to waste my life away
Down in this dirty old jail
Because I murdered that Knoxville girl,
Girl I loved so well.