INDEPENDENCE DAY (from Robert Merry's Museum, July 1863, p. 26)
Independence Day has come; Raise the banner, beat the drum; Fill the air with song and shout, Let the cannon's voice ring out. 'Tis the day of Freedom's birth On the fairest spot of earth. Let her happy children meet, And her glorious fame repeat: Tell how wrong oppressed her sires, Till Freedom lit her battle fires; Sing her triumphs when the foe Vainly struck with cruel blow. But, hark! A wailing cry of pain Is borne along o'er hill and plain; A muffled echo from the past Yet lingers on the Southern blast, Telling of hopeless years, Of unavailing tears, Of sadness 'mid all joy, Of toil without alloy. In Freedom's chosen place Grew up on an outcast race; Proud men denied her boon To children of the sun; They used the strength she gave To manacle the slave; Grew haughty in their might, Spurned the demands of right, And sought with daring hand To reign in Freedom's land. But, list again! a shout! A crash! a thunder out From cannon's blazing mouth The treason of the South. From Sumter's battered walls The flag of freedom falls! But from the steadfast North The echoing wrath bursts forth; Swift rolls the swelling tide along, "Union!" the mighty shout and song; And onward march the stalwart brave, Their country's glorious life to save, With step unfaltering on they come-- Each heart beats like a rolling drum. Now Freedom lifts her banner high, And gives a glorious battle-cry; The Stars and Stripes shall ever wave, Nor 'neath their folds remain a slave. Ay! raise the banner, beat the drum, The day of Liberty has come. Though strife still rages, God is just, And Freedom's foes shall bite the dust.