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Posts Tagged ‘Samuel Francis Smith’

ON THIS DATE

(was traveling, did not get posted yesterday)

Samuel Francis Smith was born 10/21/1808 at Boston, MA. He edited Bap­tist Mis­sion­ary Mag­a­zine, con­trib­ut­ed to the En­cy­clo­pe­dia Amer­i­cana, pas­tored & was Pro­fess­or of Mod­ern Lan­guag­es but the sec­u­lar world re­mem­bers Smith as the au­thor of My Count­ry ’Tis of Thee (written at age 23).  He and Oliver Wendell Holmes were class­mates at Har­vard, and for the 1829 class re­un­ion, Holmes wrote:       

There’s a nice youngster of excellent pith,

Fate tried to conceal him by naming him Smith;

But he shouted a song for the brave and the free,

Just read on his medal, “My country,” “of thee.”

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My country,’ tis of thee,

sweet land of liberty, of thee I sing;

land where my fathers died,

land of the pilgrims’ pride,

from every mountainside let freedom ring!

My native country, thee,

land of the noble free, thy name I love;

I love thy rocks and rills,

thy woods and templed hills;

my heart with rapture thrills, like that above.

Let music swell the breeze,

and ring from all the trees sweet freedom’s song;

let mortal tongues awake;

let all that breathe partake;

let rocks their silence break, the sound prolong.

Our fathers’ God, to thee,

author of liberty, to thee we sing;

long may our land be bright

with freedom’s holy light;

protect us by thy might, great God, our King

Samuel Francis Smith this date, 2/2/1832 penned, “My Country, ‘Tis of Thee.”  Smith was then a twenty-three-year-old Baptist seminary student.  He was born 10/21/1808 at Bos­ton, Mass­a­chu­setts.  He died in the same location, 11/16/1895.

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