Many of the workers who sang were Irish. Some songs were adaptations of Irish folk songs, and some were new songs sung in the style of those songs from the “old country.” (source)

Lyrics

1. In eighteen hundred and forty-one I put me corduroy breeches on
I put me corduroy breeches on to work upon the railway

Refrain
Fil-i-me-oo-ree-eye-ri-ay
Fil-i-me-oo-ree-eye-ri-ay
Fil-i-me-oo-ree-eye-ri-ay
To work upon the railway

2. It’s “Pat, do this” and “Pat, do that,” without a stocking or cravat,
And nothing but an old straw hat, while Pat works on the railway. Refrain

3. And, when Pat lays him down to sleep, the wiry bugs around him creep,
And hardly a bit can poor Pat sleep, while he works on the railway. Refrain

Lyrics

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