Took the Children Away

Archie Roach Buy

About Took the Children Away

"Took the Children Away" is a song written and recorded by Australian singer Archie Roach. The song was released in September 1990 as his debut single. The song was included on Roach's debut studio album Charcoal Lane. At the ARIA Music Awards of 1991, the song was nominated for ARIA Award for Breakthrough Artist – Single. In 1991, "Took the Children Away" won Roach the Human Rights Achievement Award, the first time that the award had been bestowed on a songwriter. In 2013, the song was added to the Sounds of Australia registry in the National Film and Sound Archive.  


 Become A Better Singer In Only 30 Days, With Easy Video Lessons!

This story's right, this story's true
I would not tell lies to you
Like the promises they did not keep
And how they fenced us in like sheep.
Said to us come take our hand
Sent us off to mission land.
Taught us to read, to write and pray
Then they took the children away, 
Took the children away, 
The children away.
Snatched from their mother's breast
Said this is for the best
Took them away.

The welfare and the policeman
Said you've got to understand
We'll give them what you can't give
Teach them how to really live.
Teach them how to live they said
Humiliated them instead
Taught them that and taught them this
And others taught them prejudice.
You took the children away
The children away
Breaking their mothers heart
Tearing us all apart
Took them away

One dark day on Framingham
Come and didn't give a damn
My mother cried go get their dad
He came running, fighting mad
Mother's tears were falling down
Dad shaped up and stood his ground.
He said 'You touch my kids and you fight me'

And they took us from our family.
Took us away
They took us away
Snatched from our mother's breast
Said this was for the best
Took us away.

Told us what to do and say
Told us all the white man's ways
Then they split us up again
And gave us gifts to ease the pain
Sent us off to foster homes
As we grew up we felt alone
Cause we were acting white
Yet feeling black

One sweet day all the children came back
The children come back
The children come back
Back where their hearts grow strong
Back where they all belong
The children came back
Said the children come back
The children come back
Back where they understand
Back to their mother's land
The children come back

Back to their mother
Back to their father
Back to their sister
Back to their brother
Back to their people
Back to their land
All the children come back
The children come back
The children come back
Yes I came back.

 Become A Better Singer In Only 30 Days, With Easy Video Lessons!

Archie Roach

Archie Roach (born 1956, Mooroopna, Victoria) is an Australian musician. A singer, songwriter and guitarist, he survived a turbulent upbringing to develop into a powerful voice for Indigenous Australians, a storyteller in the tradition of his ancestors, and a nationally popular and respected artist. more »

FAVORITE (3 fans)


Lyrics © BMG Rights Management

Lyrics Licensed & Provided by LyricFind

Discuss the Took the Children Away Lyrics with the community:


Use the citation below to add these lyrics to your bibliography:


"Took the Children Away Lyrics." STANDS4 LLC, 2020. Web. 2 Apr. 2020. <>.

Missing lyrics by Archie Roach?

Know any other songs by Archie Roach? Don't keep it to yourself!

Watch the song video

Took the Children Away

2,479     109

Free, no signup required:

Add to Chrome

Get instant explanation for any lyrics that hits you anywhere on the web!

Free, no signup required:

Add to Firefox

Get instant explanation for any acronym or abbreviation that hits you anywhere on the web!

Archie Roach tracks

On Radio Right Now


Powered by

Think you know music? Test your MusicIQ here!