Anchors Aweigh

Anchors Aweigh

"Anchors Aweigh" is the song of the United States Navy, composed in 1906 by Charles A. Zimmerman with lyrics by Alfred Hart Miles. Zimmerman was at the time a Lieutenant, and had been bandmaster of the United States Naval Academy Band since 1887. Miles was Midshipman First Class at the Academy, in the class of 1907, and asked Zimmerman to assist him in composing a song for that class, to be used as a football march.


The original lyrics, in two verses by Miles, were:

:Stand Navy down the field, sails set to the sky.:We'll never change our course, so Army you steer shy-y-y-y.:Roll up the score, Navy, Anchors Aweigh.:Sail Navy down the field and sink the Army, sink the Army Grey.

:Get underway, Navy, Decks cleared for the fray,:We'll hoist true Navy Blue So Army down your Grey-y-y-y.:Full speed ahead, Navy; Army heave to,:Furl Black and Grey and Gold and hoist the Navy, hoist the Navy Blue

The song was first played during the Army-Navy football game on December 1, 1906, at Franklin Field in Philadelphia. Before a crowd in excess of 30,000 Navy won the game 10-0, their first win in the match up since 1900.

Another Academy Midshipman, Royal Lovell (class of 1926) later wrote what would be adopted into the song as its third verse:

:Blue of the Seven Seas; Gold of God's great sun:Let these our colors be till all of time be done-n-n-ne,:By Severn shore we learn Navy's stern call::Faith, courage, service true with honor over, honor over all.

The song was gradually adopted as the song of the U.S. Navy; although there is a pending proposal to make it the official song, and to incorporate protocol into Navy regulations for its performance, its status remains unofficial as of 2006. Its lyrics were considered too specific to the Academy and not representative of the Navy at large, and so were rewritten by George D. Lottman (note the reference to "farewell to college joys"). Its melody was also slightly rewritten by Domenico Savino.

The Lottman-Savino version published around 1950 in London by Francis, Day & Hunter is:

Verse 1:Anchors Aweigh, my boys:Anchors Aweigh:Farewell to college joys:We sail at break of day, day, day, day:Through our last night ashore:Drink to the foam:Until we meet once more:Here's wishing you a happy voyage home!

Bridge:Heave a ho there! sailor:Ev'rybody drink up while you may:Heave a ho there! sailor:For you're gonna sail at break of day:Drink a-way, Drink a-way,:For you sail at break of day, Hey!

Verse 2:Stand Navy, down the field, sails set to the sky.:We'll never change our course, so Army you steer shy-y-y-y.:Roll up the score, Navy, Anchors Aweigh:Sail, Navy, down the field and sink the Army, sink the Army Grey.

The current lyrics include three verses and two bridges; the second verse is the one most commonly sung.

title=Anchors Aweigh
description=An instrumental sample of a single verse of Anchors Aweigh played by a brass band.
Verse 1:Stand Navy out to sea:Fight our battle cry::We'll never change our course:So vicious foes steer shy-y-y-y:Roll out the T. N. T.:Anchors Aweigh:Sail on to victory:And sink their bones to Davy Jones, hooray!

Bridge:Yo ho there shipmate:Take the fighting to the far off seas:Yo ho there messmate:Hear the wailing of the wild banshees:All hands, fire brands:Let's Blast them as we go. So

Verse 2:Anchors Aweigh my boys:Anchors Aweigh:Farewell to college joys (or "Farewell to foreign shores"):We sail at break of day day day day:Through our last night ashore:Drink to the foam:Until we meet once more:Here's wishing you a happy voyage home!

Bridge:Heave a ho there sailor:Everybody drink up while you may:Heave a ho there sailor:For your gonna sail at break of day:Drink away, Drink away,:For you sail at break of day, Hey!

Verse 3:Blue of the Mighty Deep:Gold of God’s Sun:Let these our colors be :Till all time be done:On seven seas we learn:Navy’s stern call:Faith, Courage, Service True:With Honor Over, Honor Over All.

As of the Summer of 2004, the verses taught at Navy Boot Camp are:

Verse 1:Stand, Navy, out to sea, Fight our battle cry;:We'll never change our course, So vicious foe steer shy-y-y-y.:Roll out the TNT , Anchors Aweigh. Sail on to victory:And sink their bones to Davy Jones, hooray!

Verse 2 (most widely sung):Anchors Aweigh, my boys, Anchors Aweigh.:Farewell to foreign shores, We sail at break of day, of day.:Through our last night on shore, Drink to the foam,:Until we meet once more. Here's wishing you a happy voyage home!

The bridge is kept, and that the references to college are completely dropped.

High school fight songs

The popularity of "Anchors Aweigh" has led to it being adopted by many high schools throughout the United States and Canada as the melody of their fight song for athletic competitions. Significant examples include:

* Huntley High School (Huntley, Illinois)
* Marine City High School (Marine City, Michigan)
* Lakeland High School (Lakeland, Florida)
* East Detroit High School (Eastpointe, Michigan)
* Fort Hill High School (Cumberland, Maryland)
* Farragut High School (Farragut, Tennessee)
* Fernley High School (Fernley, Nevada)
* Newport Harbor High School (Newport Beach, California)
* Monroe High School (Monroe, Oregon)
* Admiral King High School (Lorain, Ohio)
* Bremerton High School (Bremerton, Washington)
* Menomonie Senior High (Menomonie, Wisconsin)
* Lester Prairie High School (Lester Prairie, Minnesota)
* Fairmont High School (Fairmont, Minnesota)
* East Carteret High School (Beaufort, North Carolina)
* Keyser High School (Keyser, West Virginia)
* Brazosport High School (Freeport, Texas)
* Lakeview High School (Stoneboro, Pennsylvania)
* Jackson High School (Michigan) (Jackson, Michigan)
* Burlington High School (Burlington, Wisconsin
* Bonneville High School (Washington Terrace, Utah)
* Weber High School (Pleasant View, Utah)
* Sarasota High School (Sarasota, Florida)
* Lethbridge Collegiate Institute (Lethbridge, Alberta)

The lyrics are usually changed to identify more with the adopting high school. For example, Bremerton High School's lyrics are:

:Fight for the Blue and Gold:Fight for your school:We never will say die:We're with you win or lose that's why:So proudly our cheers will ring:Up to the sun:Bring back those victories Knights:And make the others bow to Bremerton

Australian Rules football club songs

The tune of "Anchors Aweigh" (with changed lyrics) is used by the following Australian Rules Football clubs as their theme song.

*East Perth Football Club (East Perth Forever Boys)
*Hobart Football Club
* Arsenal FC {England} in the 1930s.


To "weigh anchor" is to bring it aboard a vessel in preparation for departure. The phrase "anchor's aweigh" is an acknowledgment to the commander that the anchor is clear of the sea bottom and that, therefore, the ship is officially underway.

"Weigh" as a verb means to "bear" or "move", thus giving it several shades of meaning and derivation, including "weight" or heaviness. This lends itself to obvious plays on words, as with Flip Wilson's old routine about Christopher Columbus. "Columbus cried, 'Weigh anchor'. A few minutes later, a crewman reported, 'Two thousand, one hundred thirty six pounds'."

Audio file

* (ogg file)

External links

* [ Anchors Away] (mp3 file)
* [ Anchors Aweigh by the U.S. Navy Band] (mp3 file)
* [ Anchors Aweigh done as instrumental band march] (.wav file)

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