Verse > Anthologies > William McCarty, ed. > The American National Song Book
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William McCarty, comp.  The American National Song Book.  1842.
 
America
 
HAIL to the birth of American glory!
Her genius sounds loudly the trumpet of Fame;
Children, their parents, and grandfathers hoary,
Exult in the valour which purchased that name;
      Her heroes have fought again,        5
      Truth and justice to maintain,
Against foreign insult, menace, and scorn;
      Baltimore and Orleans free,
      Have raised the shout of victory,
And offered new gems her temple to adorn.        10
 
Supreme are the joys this day will afford ye,
For Freedom has gathered green bays for each son;
Brothers made captive for vengeance implored thee,
And wept with delight at the battles you won:
      A firm and united band,        15
      Freed by your valiant hand,
No tyrant shall force them from Liberty’s tree:
      With grateful emotion,
      They offer devotion
To the God who protects them on land and by sea.        20
 
Who would exchange for a traitor’s reflection
The pride of the freemen who bled in our cause:
Whose prowess released from disgraceful restriction,
A country directed by Virtue’s best laws:
      Their praise shall abound again,        25
      From Europe’s wildest glen,
For honour and mercy rejoice in their fame;
      While carnage and plunder
      Have mark’d British thunder,
And tarnish’d what lustre might circle her name.        30
 
Our statesmen with wisdom have govern’d the nation,
Avenging the wrongs which their country endured;
To freedom they offer’d a grateful oblation,
And peace by their judgment have firmly secured:
      Our ships now securely ride        35
      Over ocean’s swelling tide,
Protected by the banner they proudly display;
      Ne’er shall it be seen to wave,
      Guardian of that sordid slave,
Who, bought by foreign gold, shuns this auspicious day.        40
 
The genius of Columbia a laurel wreath bears,
For the heroes whose courage her power maintains,
Yet a crown of fresh cypress she mournfully wears,
For the loss which her children but recent sustains:
      Bless’d shade of departed worth,        45
      Smile on your nation’s mirth,
O’erclouded by grief for the statesman we mourn;
      Sure GERRY in realms above,
      Will share in our anxious love,
For the country he cherish’d, but ne’er can rejoin.        50
 
This spot, which first witness’d Columbia’s commotion,
Exhorts us to equal in valour and truth,
What we hallow this day with grateful emotion:
The memory of champions who guarded our youth.
      Here Lawrence, Burrowes, Allen’s shades,        55
      And those who fought on freedom’s glades,
Unite with the spirits of seventy-five;
      To receive the just praises
      Of their country, which raises
Their fame to the portals of heaven’s archive.        60
 
 
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