In the lyrics below, where "Bingo" is written "B-I-N-G-O", you should say the letters (spelling out BINGO). When you get to the second verse, on the line, "(Clap)-I-N-G-O!", you should clap and then say the letters I - N - G - O.

BINGO - American Children's Songs - The USA - Mama Lisa's World: Children's Songs and Rhymes from Around the World  - Intro Image


Here's an old version of the song that includes and dance with a do-si-do:

I. There was a farmer had a dog,
Bingo was his name, sir.
1 : B-i-n g-o go : | [3x's]
Bingo was his name, sir.

2. Right hand to your partner;
Left hand to your neighbor.
| : B-i-n g-o go: | [3x's]
Bingo was his name, sir.

Here are the circle dance instructions that go with this version:

Partners are chosen, and a double ring is formed with the boys in the outside ring. As the players sing, the members of one ring march one way; and the members of the other, the opposite way. At the words, "Right hand to your partner," a grand right-and-left is executed until each boy comes to his partner. Then all swing their partners, and resume marching as in the beginning.

This version can be found in "Journal of American Folklore" (1920), the article is called "Some Play Party Games in Michigan".
In some versions of this song there's a sweet 3rd stanza that goes as follows:

The farmer loved a pretty young lass,
and gave her a wedding-ring-o.
R with an I "" I with an N,
N with a G "" G with an O.



Many thanks to Melanie Combs for singing this song for us!

Thanks and Acknowledgements

Many thanks to Gracie Gralike for the illustration!