California

From Maps of San Francisco and California on Steve Haughey’s website

{Written for the Oakland Daily Evening TRIBUNE.}

CALIFORNIA.

Oh, California! On thy rock-bound, misty shore,
I watch, and hear the surging breakers roar,
And wonder if their restless, seeming endless flow
Was just the same one hundred years ago!

As through the Golden Gate the briny, ebbing tide,
Recedes to mingle with the Ocean, fair and wide,
I watch the vessels passing to and fro,
And wonder if ‘t were thus one hundred years ago!

I see upon the shore fair beings, walking light,
With manly brow, complexion fair and white,
And from their lips sweet words of wisdom flow.
I ask, could this be seen one hundred years ago?

I see, where Ocean piled its golden sands,
A noble city in rich grandeur stands,
Where fireside joys are lit with genial glow,
Oh, was it thus one hundred years ago?

On spiral domes that seem to reach the sky,
Our Nation’s Flag is streaming bold and high.
It seems to say, while waving to and fro,
“I waved not here one hundred years ago!”

I hear the cannons’ boom as thunders loud,
And from their mouths I see the smoky cloud
Rise up to mingle with the winds that blow —
Blow now as then, one hundred years ago.

Yes, here amid the fog which has enshrined
Thy shore, these visions flit across my mind,
And to my queries come the answer, “No!
These things were not, one hundred years ago.”

The Golden City, as it stands to-day,
Bears witness of a rich, progressive sway;
The cannons’ boom that falls upon our ears
Speaks of the change in one short hundred years,

And thus it is our State, with prospect bright,
Becomes a nation’s glory and her proud delight;
The comforts gained through labors fraught with tears,
Oh, may our nation share them many hundred years!

–[Charlie F****
WASHINGTON CORNERS, July 9th, 1876.

Oakland Daily Evening Tribune (Oakland, California) Jul 12, 1876

The subjoined poem which recently appeared in the Washington, D.C., Capital was written by Mary M. Clemons, fourteen years old, and a daughter of Dr. Clemons, formerly of Sandusky. It would do credit to a much older head. Dr. Clemons is in the pension service at Washington, having been transferred from the southwest, and his family have been in Southern California for the past winter. Here is the poem:

CALIFORNIA.

Bright blue skies above us,
Grass so green and sweet,
Around are friends that love us,
And flowers at our feet.

Oh! this is California,
The land of sunshine blest,
Where every one, tho’ rich or poor
Can have a chance to rest.

Oh! this is California,
Where hearts are light and gay,
Where every one you chance to meet;
Have pleasant words to say.

Oh! this is California,
Where everybody sees
The glorious sunshine all the year,
And all the flowers and trees.

Oh! this is California,
Where every one doth sing
No matter if ’tis summer,
Or winter, fall or spring.

Oh! this is California,
Where all my friends should be,
And if you don’t believe me,
Why, just come out and see.

Fullerton, Los Angeles, Co., Cal., April, 30, 1889.

Sandusky Daily Register (Sandusky, Ohio) Jan 11, 1890

Image from the Aztec Club of 1847 website

CALIFORNIA.
From the New York Sun

The brown man’s foot is on thy shore, California!
His hand is at thy people’s door, California!
Say, bang him one and draw his gore
And with his face mop up the floor,
So he won’t trouble you no more,
California, oh, California!

Thou wilt not cower in the dust, California!
Thy yellow boycott shall not rust, California!
Remember Kearney’s sacred trust
To do the mongols up or bust.
And let them have the knock-out thrust
California, oh, California!

Rise ’tis the red dawn of the day, California!
When low-browed leaders point the way, California!
With Grove L. Johnson in the fray,
And friends of Schmitz in bold array,
The Japs must go, but they must stay,
California, oh, California!

We see the blush upon thy cheek, California!
For thou wert every bravely meek, California!
But lo’ there surges forth a shriek —
From vale to vale, from peak to peak —
Pacific calls to Bitter Creek,
California, oh, California!

We hear the old-time Sand Lots hum, California!
We hear the hoodlum and the bum, California!
They call the Golden State to come
And join the rabble and the scum.
But will she do it? Say, by gum?
California, oh, California!

Washington Post — Feb 5, 1909


Nonagenarian Writes Poetically Of Woodland as State’s Fairest

S.H. Hancock, 90 years of age, with Mrs. Hancock has been visiting Mr. and Mrs. W.H. Eakle in this city. Although a nonagenarian, Mr. Hancock’s mind is as clear as a bell and his muse still retains all the fire and beauty of youth, as will be realized after a perusal of the following appraisement of Woodland, which was composed on the front porch of the Eakle home before the honorable couple departed for their home in Oakland:

WOODLAND AS I SAW IT.

A beautiful picture drawn with a free hand,
One of the fairest in our broad land;
Hedged in by trees forming a lovely frame,
Nothing seems amiss — not even the name.
Nature has put forth her wonderful power,
Calling her maidens from the leafy bower;
Planting a carpet in colors bright
From the deepest blue to the snowy white;
Weaving in flowers with a prodigal hand,
None were too lovely to beautify the land.
Her noble trees so lofty and fair
Waving to and fro in the summer air,
Casting a shade deep and profound,
Tracing their shadow on the grass grown ground.
A ride through her streets fills one with amaze.
We break forth in melody to sing their praise.
Men accomplished much but Nature was at the fore,
At each angle you turn, new beauties galore.
Oh, California, you should be proud of this spot,
One of the fairest that fell to your lot.
Fairy-land! Flower-land! Woodland!
Names will only fail.
I shall not forget you, even at the end of the trail.

— S.H. HANCOCK.

Woodland Daily Democrat (Woodland, California) Dec 4, 1922

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