Posts Tagged ‘Political Poetry’

For Lincoln

September 20, 2011

Democratic Biography of Abe Lincoln.

CHAPTER I.
Abraham Lincoln, the “rail candidate for the Presidency,” was born in Harding county, Kentucky, 1809.

CHAPTER II.
He hadn’t much education for one of his size.

CHAPTER III.
He kept a seven-by-nine grocery in Egypt, Illinois; failed in that; went to work and actually split 1500 chestnut rails in six weeks and eleven days.

CHAPTER IV.
Was twice a member of the Illinois Legislature.

CHAPTER V.
Was a member of Congress two years, and behaved himself so well they let him off.

CHAPTER VI.
Became a great man by running against Douglas for the Senate and getting beautifully beat.

CHAPTER VII.
Was nominated at Chicago by a rail, and like the celebrated rail carries of old, W.R. Snapp, will run himself and rail into the ground.

THE END.

The Appleton Motor (Appleton, Wisconsin) Jul 19, 1860

Image from The Violent History of American Unions on LiveJournal.

Song of the Lynn Strikers.

We strikers once for higher pay
With crowded ranks did cram Lynn;
We come with fuller ranks to-day
For Lincoln and for Hamlin.

The Southerners at us did sneer
And fiercely curse and ban Lynn,
But wilder yet will be their fear
Of Lincoln and of Hamlin.

Bold Robin Hood won Lincoln green,
And his sweet minstrel Gamelyn,
Were they alive they’d go, I ween,
For Lincoln and for Hamlin.

Like Sherwood’s king, we strike down wrong,
And while our town’s no sham Lynn,
We’ll wave our flag and go in strong
For Lincoln and Hamlin.

Lynn, May 18.

The Appleton Motor (Appleton, Wisconsin) Jul 19, 1860

The Bells!
NOT BY EDGAR A. POE.

Hear the Opposition Bells,
Empty bells!
How the turbulence of Babel their dissonance excels;
How they rattle, rattle, rattle,
Like a cow-bell with a cold;
Like the bells they hang on cattle,
Or a sword and buckler’s battle,
In the civil days of old.

Oh! the anger and the clangor
Of the bores!
From New Orleans to Bangor,
How it roars!
Hear their broad and brazen throats
Begging Abolition votes —
With a pledge to act the Hessian
In the war against Secession,
Whilst they shyly try to “ring in” Mr. Bell,
Bell! Bell! Bell!
Oh, the fusion and confusion of these Bells!

Appleton Motor (Appleton, Wisconsin) Oct 25, 1860

From the Boston Transcript.

“Is This a Dagger?”

Roger Pryor turned to Brutus!
‘Tis awful to think on!
He’s going to shoot us!
And poignard Abe Lincoln!
For, should Abe be elected,
And veto Secession,
Bold Roger will give him
No time for confession;
But murder old Abe —
How it makes the blood curdle!
And stick him where Brutus did,
Over the gurdle.
But who is this Roger,
That vapors and swaggers?
This vilonous Roger,
That talks about daggers?
Why, it’s Roger A. Pryor,
Whose clay has grown hotter,
Since the roasting it got
At the hands of the Potter.

Appleton Motor (Appleton, Wisconsin) Oct 25, 1860

About Roger A. Pryor — from Wikipedia:

In 1859, he was elected as a Democrat to the U.S. House of Representatives to fill the vacancy in Virginia’s 4th District caused by the death of William O. Goode. He served from December 7, 1859 to March 3, 1861. In the House, Pryor became a particular enemy of Representative Thaddeus Stevens, a Republican abolitionist.

During his term, he got into a verbal altercation with John F. Potter, a representative from Wisconsin, and challenged Potter to a duel. Potter, having the choice of weapons, chose bowie knives. Pryor backed out saying that bowie knives were not a civilized weapon. The incident found widespread publication in the Northern press which saw the refusal as a coup for the North — the humiliation of a Southern “fire eater”.

Image from the Vintage Glory Cards website

Liberty and Union.

Dissolve the Union! We curse the thought,
The lips that breathe, the hand that plans it,
Our country never shall be bought,
Nor conquered, whilst we can defend it.

As braves the storm the mountain rock,
As cleaves the cloud the eagle’s pinion,
We’ll meet oppression’s battle shock,
And triumph o’er corruption’s minion!

Appleton Motor (Appleton, Wisconsin) Oct 25, 1860

Maintain the Right

September 19, 2011

Image from The Conservative Reader website.

From the Essex Gazette

“THE BILL OF ABOMINATIONS.”

Lines written on the passage of Pinckney’s Resolutions in the House of Representatives, and of Calhoun’s Bill of Abominations in the Senate of the U.S.

Now by our father’s ashes! — where’s the spirit
Of the true hearted and the unshackled gone?
Sons of old freemen, do we but inherit
Their NAMES alone?

Is the old Pilgrim spirit quenched within us?
Stoops the proud manhood of our souls so low,
That Mammon’s lure or Party’s wile can win us,
To silence now?

No — when our land to ruin’s brink is verging,
In God’s name, let us speak, while there is time!
Now when the padlocks for our lips are forging,
SILENCE IS CRIME.

What! shall we henceforth humbly ask as favors
Rights all our own! — in madness shall we barter
For treacherous peace, the freedom nature gave us,
God and our Charter?

Here shall the statesman seek the free to fetter?
Here Lynch law light its horrid fires on high!
And in the church, their proud and skilled abettor
Make truth a lie?

Torture the pages of the hallowed Bible
To sanction crime and robbery, and blood,
And, in oppression’s hateful service, libel
Both man and God!

Shall our New England stand erect no longer,
But stoop in chains upon her downward way,
Thicker to gather on her limbs and stronger
Day after day?

Oh no! methinks from all her wild green mountains —
From valleys where her slumbering fathers lie —
From her blue rivers and her welling fountains,
And clear, cold sky!

From her rough coast and isles, which hungry ocean
Gnaws with his surges — from the fisher’s skiff
With white sail swaying to the billow’s motion
Round rock and cliff —

From the free fire-side of her unbought farmer —
From her free laborer at his loom and wheel;
From the brown smith-shop, where beneath the hammer,
Rings the red steel!

From each and all, if God hath not forsaken
Our land, and left us to an evil choice,
Loud as the summer thunder-bolt shall waken
A PEOPLE’S VOICE!

Startling and stern! the northern winds shall bear it
Over Potomac to St. Mary’s wave;
And buried Freedom shall awake to hear it
Within her grave,

Oh — let that voice go forth — the bondman sighing
By Santee’s wave — in Mississippi cane,
Shall feel the hope within his bosom dying,
Revive again.

Let it go forth! The millions who are gazing
Sadly upon us from afar, shall smile,
And unto God devout thanksgiving raising,
Bless us the while.

Oh, for your ancient freedom, pure and holy,
For the deliverance of a groaning earth,
For the wronged captive, bleeding, crushed, and lowly,
Let it go forth!

Sons of the best of fathers, will ye falter
With all they left ye perilled and at stake?
Ho — once again on freedom’s holy altar
The fires awake!

Prayer — strengthened for the trial, come together,
Put on the harness for the moral fight.
And with the blessing of your Heavenly Father,
MAINTAIN THE RIGHT.

Alton Observer (Alton, Illinois) Mar 9, 1837

The Alton Observer did not publish the name of the author, John Greenleaf Whittier, but I found the same poem, slightly revised,  published later in a few  books.

What Constitutes a State

August 27, 2011

Image from the University of Duisburg Essen website

TRUE POLITICS.

In one of his lyrics, Sir William Jones, the great oriental scholar and judge, breaks forth into the annexed statistic strain:

What constitutes a state?
Not high raised monuments or labored mound,
Thick wall or moated gate;
Not cities proud with spires and turrets crowned;
Not bays and broad armed ports,
Where, laughing at the storm, rich navies ride.
Not starred and spangled courts,
Where low browed baseness wafts perfume to pride.
No! men, high minded men!
With powers as far above dull brutes endured
In forest, brake, or den,
As beasts excel cold rocks and and brambles rude;
Men who their duties know,
But know their rights, and knowing, dare maintain,
Prevent the long aimed blow,
And crush the tyrant while they rend the chain!
These constitute a state.

Alton Observer (Alton, Illinois) Jan 19, 1837

And what would TRUE POLITICS be without a little plagiarism? James Sidney Rollins appears to have used this verse, minus a few lines in a letter sometime around 1870. I can’t find any citation/credit in the book:

Title: James Sidney Rollins, memoir
Author: William Benjamin Smith
Publisher: Printed at the De Vinne Press, 1891
Page 253

The Gang’s Skidoo Day

June 27, 2011

In the Pennsylvania’s Governor’s race in 1906,  Edwin Sydney Stuart ended up besting Lewis Emery, Jr. to win the election, graft or no graft, skidoo or no.

The Gang’s Skidoo Day.

This is the day the ring will get
Its dues, without a doubt;
The people have arisen and
Are bound to knock it out.
The bosses who have ruled the
State so long with iron hand,
Will get a solar plexus blow
That they cannot withstand.

Our gallant leader, Emery
A fighter without fear —
Will whip the gang and bring them
To their very knees in fear.
And Acheson, who’s striving hard
To save his bit of bacon,
Will be forced to give up his seat
In congress to “Bob” Aiken.

The grafters who have fattened off
The taxpayers, ’tis plain,
In battle of the ballots will
Be numbered with the slain.
And ’tis a fate they well deserve,
All know that this is true —
Hark! Do you hear that funny noise?
‘Tis “23” Skidoo!

New Castle News (New Castle, Pennsylvania) Nov 6, 1906

Pittsburg baseball team images and excerpt from the Baseball Legends Revealed website. (Scroll down passed Bill Richardson.)

In 1890, a new baseball league opened up, and they had a Pittsburgh team, as well, the Pittsburgh Burghers. This new team essentially pirated away all of McKnight’s best players. After the worst season in Pittsburgh history in 1890 (finishing 23-113), McKnight was forced to abandon his team back to the National League.


How are these two topics related? 23 SKIDOO, of course! I can’t vouch for the accuracy of this 1906 newspaper article. I didn’t see this theory listed in Wikipedia’s article on the origins of 23 Skidoo, but since I ran across it, might as well put it out there as an option:

ONLY 23 PAID TO SEE BALL GAME

Pittsburg Holds Record for the Smallest Attendance at a Championship Contest.

One often hears of the skidoo number “23” and how it really came to be the hoodoo number, etc., but all the guesses regarding its relations to baseball are wrong. The number really started in Pittsburg and proved conclusively that it was really the skidoo number, but of course it was not thought of at that time.

It was back in 1890 when Pittsburg had two baseball teams, one in the Players’ league and the other in the National league. It was the National league club that failed to make good and started “23” on the way. In a game of ball there September 26 of that year, but 23 persons paid to see the Pittsburg and Boston teams struggle for the nine long innings. That year Pittsburg was hopelessly in last place with no chances of ever getting out. That was the smallest crowd that ever paid to see two National league teams play.

Pittsburg struggled along for some time with the two teams, but both could not be supported, and the National soon won out. During the season when the 23 people paid to see the game there  Pittsburg made every effort-in-its-power to get up the ladder without success. That year over 100 players were tried out and yet the club finished last. Never before nor since have as many players ever been given a trial by one team in a season. Thus it will be seen that Pittsburg beside finishing in last place held two records — one for the smallest attendance and the other for trying out the greatest number of players.

New Castle News (New Castle, Pennsylvania) Aug 29, 1906

You Better Watch Your Cheese

July 25, 2010

“LIMBERG.”

On a tree there sat a crow,
In his bill a chunk of cheese;
On the ground a fox, below,
Said, “Some music, if you please.
You are beautiful of wing,
And I bet that you can sing.”
Cheered by flattery, the crow
Sang, and dropped the cheese below,
Then the cunning fox did freeze
To the fallen chunk of cheese;
And he calmly lugged it off,
And he scoffed the song with scoff.

MORAL.

When they pat you on the back,
When they say that you’re the one;
When they say they’re on the track,
“And have been obliged to run;”
When their compliments denote
They are going for your vote,
You can do just as you please,
But — you’d better watch your cheese.

The Ohio Democrat (New Philadelphia, Ohio) Jul 17, 1874

***

From Wikipedia: “The Fox and the Crow” is a fable attributed to Aesop.

Moral of the story: Never trust a flatterer…or a politician on the campaign trail.

***

**I found this illustrated version as one piece on picsdigger.com. Their source was steinerbooks.org, but I couldn’t locate on that site.

William Allen: Congressman, Senator, Governor

July 22, 2010

Governor William Allen (Image from http://www.ohiohistorycentral.org)

The Old Governor and the New.

HON. WM. ALLEN took the oath of office as Governor of Ohio, on Monday last. After this, ex-Governor NOYES introduced the new Governor in the following courteous remarks:

GOVERNOR NOYES’ FAREWELL.

MY FELLOW-CITIZENS: I have the honor to introduce to you a gentleman long distinguished in the country’s history, and now called by the sovereign voice of the people to preside over the interests of our State; the Hon. William Allen, Governor of Ohio. [Great and prolonged applause.]

GOVERNOR ALLEN’S INAUGURAL.

Upon being thus introduced Governor Allen spoke as follows:

GENTLEMEN OF THE GENERAL ASSEMBLY: The events of October have made it my duty to appear before you, and in your presence to take the oath prescribed to the Chief Executive officer of the State.

I have taken the oath, and shall earnestly seek to perform the promises it exacts.

At the opening of your session my predecessor, in his annual message, submitted to you a general statement of the several Executive Departments of the Government. He likewise made such suggestions as seemed to him necessary and proper.

If at any time during your session the public interests should, in my judgment, require me to do so, I will submit to you some additional suggestions in the form of a special message.

The Constitutional Convention, now in session, will no doubt complete its important labors and submit the result for ratification by the people during the current year.

Should such ratification be obtained, your next session will be one of extraordinary labor. You will then be required to revise the whole body of the general laws of the State, and, by appropriate modifications, adjust those laws to the requirements of the new Constitution.

For these reasons you may deem it unnecessary to alter in any very material particulars the existing laws at your present session.

But there are some legislative acts which will, I believe, attract your immediate attention. These are the acts by which taxes are imposed and appropriations made. Even if you were now convened under ordinary circumstances, you would, I believe, feel it to be your duty to reduce existing taxes and appropriations; for it is evident to all men that the increase of taxes and public expenses has for some years past been much beyond the actual and rational necessities of the public service.

But, gentlemen, you are not now convened under ordinary circumstances.

A few months ago, that undefinable but tremendous power, called a money panic, imparted a violent shock to the whole industrial and property system of the country.

The well-considered plans and calculations of all men engaged in active business, or in the exertion of active labor, were suddenly and thoroughly deranged. In the universal business anarchy that ensued, the minds of men became more or less bewildered, so that few among them were able distinctly to see their way or know what to do or what to omit, even through the brief futurity of a single week. All values and all incomes were instantly and deeply depressed.

There was not a farmer, a manufacturer, a merchant, a mechanic, or a laborer, who did not feel that he was less able to meet his engagements, or pay his taxes, than he had been before. The distressful effect of this state of things was felt by all, but it was more grievously felt by the great body of the laboring people, because it touched them at the vital point of subsistence. Many of these men were unable to find that regular and remunerative employment so essential to their well-being, while some of them, especially in the large towns and cities, would have suffered for the want of the nutriment upon which the continuance of life depends, but for that prompt humanity and charity so characteristic of and so honorable to the whole American people.

It is in the midst of this condition of things that you are now convened; and it is manifestly the duty of the Legislature of the State to afford the only relief which it has the constitutional power to afford, by the reduction of the public taxes in proportion to the reduced ability of the people to pay.

Yet, this cannot be done without at the same time reducing the expenditures of the State Government down to the very last dollar compatible with the maintenance of the public credit of the State, and the efficient working of the State Government, under the ever-present sense of necessary economy. I do not mean that vague and mere verbal economy which public men are so ready to profess with regard to public expenditures — I mean that earnest and inexorable economy which proclaims its existence by accomplished facts.

In the prodigality of the past you will find abundant reason for frugality in the future.

I close these brief observations by returning my thanks to the people of the State for that expression of their good will and pleasure which brings me before you.

I thank you, gentlemen of the General Assembly, and our fellow-citizens here convened, for the respectful attention with which I have been heard; and I thank my predecessor for the courtesy and urbanity which he has extended toward me since my arrival in this city, when for the first time I had the pleasure of making his personal acquaintance.

The Portsmouth Times (Portsmouth, Ohio) Jan 17, 1874

Governor William Allen

ALLEN pays $525 per month for himself and family at the Neil House. — Democratic economy!

Kenton Republican.

This may be true: but one thing is sure — the honest old man will pay it out of his own, not the people’s pocket! He recently sold $30,000 worth of cattle from his own farm, and has a lot of durhams and shorthorns left. We can assure our Republican friends that Governor Allen will never purchase a landaulet, silver-mounted harness and gold-headed whip out of the governor’s contingent fund. He was born in the “earlier and purer days of the republic. It is left to the WILLIAMES, the DELANOS and the parasites who are appointed by GRANT, the chief salary grabber, to indulge in carriages and horses at the expense of the taxpayers of the country. There is a day of reckoning coming for all public thieves.

Plain Dealer.

The Ohio Democrat (New Philadelphia, Ohio) Jan 30, 1874

Governor Allen has returned all Railroad passes sent to him, saying that he does not think it comports with his position to accept favors of that kind.

Cambridge Jeffersonian (Cambridge, Ohio) Feb 26, 1874

One of the first official acts of Governor Allen was to pardon William Graham, a notorious rebel sympathizer of Summit county, who was serving out a life sentence for the murder of two loyal citizens during the war. This act stamps the real character and sympathies of Gov. Allen, and is alike an insult to the dead and the living — the hero in his grave and the loyal people of the State.

The Coshocton Age (Coshocton, Ohio) Mar 6, 1874

Democratic State Convention.
Everything Harmonious, and a General Good Feeling.

{excerpt}

SPEECH OF GOVERNOR ALLEN

He said a speech now would be out of order. He stood before them as a servant of the Democracy always, when unobstructed, points to truth, honor and liberty of all men. He regarded the people as every thing and the agent as nothing except as he executes their will. He had served the people for sixteen years, and left their service with his hands as clean as when he entered their service, and when he came to die, he would rather have inscribed on his tombstone:

“Here lies and honest man, than to have millions of stolen treasures to leave to his children. He knew not that he should serve the people more than one year. A voice, “Yes, you will.” Another voice, “You will be the next President,” immense cheering. Well, I do not seek or decline any position the people may call me to fill. I again thank you. Continued cheering and three hearty cheers “for William Allen, the next President of the United States.”

Allen County Democrat (Lima, Ohio) Sep 3, 1874

LAST year the Radicals in Ohio called upon William Allen to “rise up,” and now they are sorry for it. The old gentleman refuses to take his seat, but stands up  17,000 strong.

The Portsmouth Times (Portsmouth, Ohio) Oct 31, 1874

"Rise Up" William Allen - Nov 5, 1874 - The Democrat - Lima, Ohio

“Rise Up” William Allen.

The Democratic organs which have been so distressed over the intemperate habits of President Grant, should give their immediate and prayerful attention to His Excellency, Roaring William Allen, Governor of Ohio. The Kenton Republican says:

Governor Allen was very sick when he left here last Saturday night, and had to be carried from the barouche into the sleeping car. His stomach was so overloaded with mean whisky that he was as helpless as a child. and yet the Democracy speak of this man as their prospective candidate for the Presidency.

A representative man of the party in every sense of the word!

This is melancholy. The people of Ohio have known for a year past that His Excellency keeps something “thirteen years old” in his cellar, but they did not suppose that he ever had to be helped to his carriage on public occasions. William will find it difficult to “rise up” with a record like this against him.

The Coshocton Age (Coshocton, Ohio) Nov 20, 1874

“Your Taxes.”

In his speech on the 8th inst. Governor Allen said:

‘There it is, draped in black. A State has disappeared. Louisiana as a sovereign State of this Union has no existence. This night a part of the standing army paid by your taxes has crushed it out of existence.’

That is more of the old rebel talk about a ‘Sovereign State.’ Gov. Allen is much troubled about the taxes of the people. While upon this subject we wish to call his attention to a matter in the annual report of the Auditor of State, page 228. It reads thus:

INAUGURATION OF GOV. ALLEN. — 1874.

Feb. 21, William Wall, carriage hire …$100.00
Feb. 24, Frank Hemmersbach, service of band …75.00
March 10, Charles Huston, hairbrushes, perfumery, soap, combs and shoe-blacking …24.00
April 10, James Naughton, 75 years of crash at 12 1/2 cents per yard …9.38
Total … $217.88

And it costs the tax-payers of the State two hundred and seventeen dollars and eighty-eight cents to get one old Democrat scrubbed up and perfumed so as to appear decent when presented to the public. But, is not 75 years of crash rather a long towel to only one of the unwashed Democracy? To the rescue, fellow-citizens! Our liberties are in danger! Suppose the Democratic Legislature should pass a law to buy soap, fine combs and 75 yards of crash for every unwashed Democrat in the State.

Holmes County Republican.

The Coshocton Age (Coshocton, Ohio) Feb 5, 1875

It Makes a Difference Whose Ox is Gored.
[Pomeroy Telegraph.]

Governor Allen and Senator Thurman were called out one night last week in Columbus, to help celebrate the election of a Democratic Mayor in that city, by three hundred less than the usual majority. The Governor was terribly severe on corruptionists, and had a good deal to say about the corruption existing at Washington, but somehow he forgot to say anything about that lately brought to light in the Ohio Legislature, and which his party friends sought diligently to cover up.

Your average Democrat is fierce on Republican scoundrels, but when it comes to exposing and punishing those of his own party, he generally declines. It strikes us that an Ohio Democrat, at this time, must have a good deal of cheek to talk about corruption in others.

Let him look at the last Ohio Legislature and then keep silent.

The Coshocton Age (Coshocton, Ohio) Apr 30, 1875

Here is a strategy! Down in Dark county there lives a man named William Allen, a long, lank, sullen, dyspeptic, tobacco-chewing man, who was once a Democrat, who served a couple of terms in Congress — one as a Democrat and another as a Republican. He is a lawyer, has been a Judge, and has boxed the political compass thoroughly. The only thing good about him is his name!

Now the Republicans think if they could only put up this William Allen against our “Old Bill,” they would make a point. We don’t think it would amount to much, though it would lead to the confusion which used to attend the fight between “Old Doctor Jacob Townsend Sarsaparilla, and that of “Young Doctor Jacob Townsend.” Ours is the original William, and having once “risen,” all the namesakes and Radicals in the State can’t keep him from being re-elected.

Hurrah for the original Bill! No counterfeit bills taken by the people of Ohio.

Plain Dealer.

Allen County Democrat (Lima, ohio) May 13, 1875

What kind of whisky do they drink at Coshocton? Is it what is termed ‘rifled,’ ‘rot-gut’ or the kind that kills around the corner?

The intelligent editor of the Coshocton Democrat in giving a three column history of old Bill Allen, telling how he was born away back in the misty past, just before the dawn of history in the old North State, which accounts for the various reports as to his age. After discoursing like a love-sick maiden on the old ‘chap’s’ love scrapes, he launches out on his political career and says, ‘Allen accepted the challenge of the Whigs to debate with Thomas Ewing. In the very first debate, Allen, in the opinion of the audience, had much the best of it, and so firm did the conviction become, that Ewing was withdrawn after the second joint discussion.’ Great Heaven! to compare William Allen with, perhaps, the greatest man intellectually this State ever produced! It would be just as appropriate to compare the editor of the Coshocton Democrat to a jackass and so enrage the animal that he would kick the day lights out of you for it.

Again, this editor would have us believe that old ‘Uncle William’ discussed philosophy with Socrates, paraded the streets of old Athens arm in arm with Plato and Aristotle, for, he says: ‘Gov. Allen is a great historian, is deeply versed in philosophy and the sciences, and is better acquainted with rare books than almost any scholar any one ever met.’ No wonder the old man was acquainted with rare books! It is supposed those things existed before the deluge when the Governor was a boy, but the idea that the old Governor knows anything about philosophy and the sciences!

Great Jupiter! Hurl your thunder-bolts upon the devoted head of that Editor! But the poor fellow knows not what he is talking about. Too much honor had turned his head. ‘Old Uncle William,’ philosopher and scientist! Shades of the old philosophers! smite that man! Old Bill Allen a philosopher! In the next number that fellow will be claiming that the devil is a Saint, because the old thief always, and under all circumstances, marches under the Democratic banner.

Gentlemen of Coshocton take charge of that man. Don’t permit him to run at large while the people are paying so much money to make such ‘chaps’ comfortable at the Asylum for idiots.

Zanesville Courier.

The Coshocton Age (Coshocton, Ohio) Jul 15, 1875

Cambridge Jeffersonian - Aug 26, 1875

:[From the Plain Dealer.

We are Coming, WILLIAM ALLEN.
We are coming, William Allen,
From the meadow and the hill.
We are coming from the workshops,
From the furnace and the mill;
‘Tis the steady tramp of the thousands
That gives that steady roar,
That rolls from the Ohio
To Lake Erie’s sandy shore.

We are coming, William Allen,
O’er the river and the rill,
Over bog and over meadow,
Through the valley down the hill;
From the filed and from the forest,
From the mountain and the glen.
Blow your fog horn, William Allen,
Equal rights for equal men.

We are coming, William Allen,
From the Factory and mine;
For labor’s great tin-pail brigade
Is wheeling into line;
And massed in solid columns,
Armed with freemen’s ballots, we
Are coming, William Allen,
Lead us on to victory.

Allen County Democrat (Lima, Ohio) Sep 16, 1875

THE Democratic orators have a good deal of demagogue clap-trap to offer to the “poor man,” and a good deal to say about bloated bondholders and aristocratic land holders of great farms that the poor man ought to own a portion of, &c., &c. Governor ALLEN is one of the latter and owns a fourteen hundred acre farm, but he don’t say a word about giving or even selling a few acres for a garden spot to a poor man. His pure sympathy don’t take just that turn, although he is very much in need of more votes than he will get.

He proposes to fool them to vote for him by promising them “more money” — somebody elses money — if they can get it, after he gets their votes.

And here is Dr. BLACKBURN who his friend NICHOLAS SCHOTT says, has 400 acres, — does he propose to divide it with the “poor men” of Jackson township? NICHOLAS says “he is a little on the stingy order,” which seems to answer the question. The demagogues who have so much gushing interest for the poor man are not all fools.

The Coshocton Age (Coshocton, Ohio) Oct 7, 1875

IN a speech which Governor Allen made at Washington O.H. some time last Fall, there occurs this passage:

“The Democrats came into office last January after our political opponents had held control of the State of Ohio for nearly twenty years, but we could not find, after the most careful examination, a single case of official corruption.”

And this is more than he could have truthfully said of his own party before they had been in power as many months.

The Athens Messenger (Athens, Ohio) Oct 7, 1875

Nov 4, 1875 - The Coshocton Age

ALEXANDER DURANTY & Co., merchants of Liverpool, England, have failed for two million dollars, and the Democrat thinks it is all because BILL ALLEN and SAM CARY and the rag-baby were not elected last fall.

Sad.

The Coshocton Age (Coshocton, Ohio) Apr 20, 1876

IN the midst of the terrible slaughter of Democratic candidates for the Presidency, on account of some crooked transactions in money, or Congressional lobby jobs, the Democrat favors old BILL ALLEN as the only one not tainted, or sound on the rag-baby question. Yet old BILL has not the ghost of a chance.

The Coshocton Age (Coshocton, Ohio) Apr 27, 1876

OLD Governor “Bill” Allen, the warmest-hearted, most genial, generous and yet firmest and truest of Democrats, has retired from politics and the world. He leaves no better man behind him.

Memphis Appeal.

The Portsmouth Times (Portsmouth, Ohio) May 19, 1877

Image from Find-A-Grave

Find-A-Grave memorial LINK

SUDDEN DEATH OF EX-GOVERNOR, WILLIAM ALLEN.

Special to the Columbus Dispatch.]
CHILLICOTHE, July 11, 1879

The community was startled this morning by the report of the sudden death of ex Governor William Allen. He had been in town on Wednesday, chatting with old acquaintances, apparently in the best of health and spirits. Yesterday he had a slight chill, after which he took medicine and a warm bath. But apparently there was nothing in that illness to cause alarm.

He sat up late on his porch last evening, but after retiring was restless and arose, requesting Dr. and Mrs. Scott — his son in-law and daughter — to assist him, and they led him to a chair, into which he

DROPPED DEAD.

The cause of his death is ascertained to have been heart disease, although he had never suffered from any premonitory symptoms.

Governor Allen retained his intellectual vigor to the last. At the time of his death he was in the seventy-fourth year of his age. From sixteen to eighteen years of that period have been spent in public life — as a member of Congress, Senator of the United States, and Governor of Ohio. He was universally respected and beloved by all who knew him here, and his loss will be sincerely regretted by his neighbors and the poor who his hand often fed.

The date of the funeral is not yet fixed, but probably will take place Sunday; as it is feared the body cannot be preserved until Monday, when the family desire the interment to take place. A number of distinguished men and old friends of the Governor are expected to be in attendance at the obsequies.

The Marion Star (Marion, Ohio) Jul 12, 1879

Fruit Hill - Allen Homestead (Image from Rootsweb)

DEATH OF EX-GOV. WM. ALLEN.

The Venerable Patriot and Statesman Breathed his Last Yesterday Morning.

THE telegraph brought the painful intelligence to this city yesterday forenoon of the death, at his home in Ross county, at an early hour yesterday morning, of Hon. WM. ALLEN, ex-Congressman, ex-Senator and ex-Governor of Ohio, in his 73d year. Gov. ALLEN was born in North Carolina. In his boyhood days he walked from his native State, to Chillicothe, Ross county, where he studied law. In 1830 he was elected to Congress. In 1836 he was elected to the United States Senate, and re-elected in 1842, serving with CLAY, WESBSTER and BENTON with equal prominence, as one of the intellectual giants of that day. In 1873, after a voluntary retirement of 25 years, he was elected Governor of Ohio, but was defeated in 1875, after one of the most memorable campaigns ever known in the State.

Governor ALLEN was a man of the most undisputed honesty, broad and comprehensive in his views and fearless and able in defending them. He was the choice of the Ohio delegation in the St. Louis Convention in 1876 for President. Through a long and eventful public life, no suspicion of wrong doing was ever charged by his political adversaries, and no other man was held in such high esteem by his party friends.

He was a man of vast information upon all questions of a scientific, literary and political nature. He was never an idler, but in his rural home on Fruit Hill he prosecuted his researches as zealously in his latter years as he did when a student at law.

He was a friend of the oppressed, and his speeches in the campaign of 1875, were full of the spirit of Democracy which stood for the “man against the dollar.”

His Democracy partook of the fervor of religious zeal. He was eloquent in paying it the highest tribute which has ever been paid. In accepting the nomination for Governor in 1873 he said of the Democracy “upon its success and that alone rests the prosperity, liberty and happiness of the American people.”

In a speech delivered at Lancaster, Ohio, on the 19th of August, 1837, Senator Allen then rising rapidly to fame, spoke these memorable words:

“Democracy is a sentiment not to be appalled, corrupted or compromised. It knows no baseness; it cowers to no danger; it oppresses no weakness. Fearless, generous and humane, it rebukes the arrogant, cherishes honor and sympathises with the humble. It asks nothing but what it commands. Destructive only of depotism, it is the sole conservator of liberty, labor and property. It is the sentiment of freedom, of equal rights, of equal obligations. It is the law of nature pervading the law of the land.

We have this speech before us in a copy of the Chillicothe Advertiser, of September 9th, 1837, making eleven columns of that paper. It was a masterly effort and devoted principally to the perils which menaced the rights of the people from the United States Banks and delineated the baleful influence of an organized banking monopoly.

Gov. ALLEN leave but one child, Mrs. Dr. SCOTT, who resides at the old homestead. The particulars of his death did not accompany the meagre announcement by telegraph, and we reserve until next week a more extended notice of this great and good man, who in the public and private station was a man of unimpeachable probity, enlarged patriotism, an intellectual giant, a warm hearted citizen and a noble man. Ohio has lamented the death of many of her statesmen, but the death of none that have gone before will be more keenly regretted than the death of the philosopher, patriot, and statesman, WILLIAM ALLEN.

The Portsmouth Times (Portsmouth, Ohio) Jul 12, 1879

WILLIAM ALLEN.

Sketches of His Life and Public Services.

HON. WM. ALLEN was born in Edenton, Chowan county, North Carolina, on the 5th of January, 1807. He was, by the death of both father and mother, left an orphan in his infancy. His parents were poor. In his boyhood days there were no common schools in North Carolina, nor in Virginia, whither he early removed, and he never attended any school of any kind, except a private infant school for a short time, until he came, at the age of sixteen, to Chillicothe, Ohio. He, however, early manage to acquire the rudiments of learning; and that was the golden age of public speaking, and the era of oratory and orators in this country. He was enthused and carried away with a passion for listening to public addresses, upon every occasion and upon any subject, marking the manner and treasuring up the words of the various speakers he listened to — and he would go far to get the opportunity to hear. He soon secured a prize to him more precious than silver and gold — a pocket copy of Walker’s Dictionary, which he consulted for the pronunciation and meaning of every word that he heard and did not understand. This companion always accompanied him to public meetings, all of which he sought and attended as a deeply interested hearer.

Several of the years of his boyhood life were spent at Lynchburg, Virginia, where he supported himself working as a saddler’s apprentice. When he was sixteen years old, he collected together his worldly goods, tied them in a handkerchief, and set out on foot, walking every step of the way from Lynchburg, Virginia, to Chillicothe, where he found his sister, Mrs. Pleasant Thurman, the mother of Hon. Allen G. Thurman, who was then a small boy, whom he had never seen before.

After taking up his residence at Chillicothe, where he has ever since resided, (except when absent in the public services) young Allen was, by his sister, placed in the Old Chillicothe Academy, where he received his only instruction from a teacher. She herself selected and supervised his general reading. In this he derived the greatest advantage. The books she placed in his hands were the works of the best and most advanced writers and thinkers, by the aid of which his thoughts were impelled in the right direction, and his mental development became true and comprehensive.

Struggling on, and maintaining himself as best as he could, Allen entered, as law student, the office of Edward King, father of Hon. Rufus King, President of the late Ohio Constitutional Convention, and the most gifted son of the great Rufus King of Revolutionary memory and fame. When he came to the bar and while he continued to practice, forensic power, the ability and art of addressing a jury successfully, was indispensable to the lawyer’s success. This Allen possessed and assiduously cultivated, rather than the learning of cases, and technical rules, and pure legal habits of thought and statement, which made a counselor influential with the court.

While it is true that William Allen will be chiefly remembered for his services in the Legislature and executive departments of the government, it is certain that he was a learned and able lawyer. His name appears frequently in the earlier volumes of the Ohio Reports, and in some instances his arguments were abstracted by the reporter, Mr. Charles Hammond. They show conclusively that he was not only thoroughly familiar with the principles of the common law, but clearly understood the limitations on governmental power, State and Federal.

Political activity, a widespread reputation as a legal power in the judicial forum before a jury, and a fine military figure and bearing, joined to a voice of command, fixed him in the public eye as one deserving of political promotion. He had not long to wait. His Congressional district was strongly Whig. Wm. Key, Bond? and Richard Douglass so hotly contested for the place in that party that a “split” was produced, to heal which Governor Duncan McArthur was induced to decline a gubernatorial re-election, and to become a candidate, they both withdrew in his favor. Against him Wm. Allen was put in nomination by the Democracy, to make what was deemed a hopeless race. With a determination to succeed, he spoke everywhere, ably and effectively, mapped out every path and by road in the district, and visited nearly every voter at home, thus insuring the full vote of his party at the polls, and the accession of many converts.

During this campaign he met and overcame in debate William Sumpter Murphy, the grandson of the Revolutionary General Sumpter, and at that time recognized as the first orator in Ohio, who had been put forward as another Democratic candidate to divide with Allen the Democratic vote. The power he displayed in this canvass was fully exemplified in Allen at a later period, when he accepted the challenge of the Whigs to debate with Thomas Ewing.

At the end of that memorable contest for a seat in Congress, William Allen was declared elected by one vote, when he had scarce attained the Constitutional age to occupy it. Five hundred men are yet living who claim the honor of having, by lucky accident, cast that vote. Although the youngest member, he at once took rank among the foremost men in the House of the 23d Congress, and took a leading part in its most important discussions.

An election for United States Senator was soon to occur, and the two parties struggled for a majority in the General Assembly. Ross county was Whig; but the Democrats nominated a strong candidate for Representative. Allen labored for his election, and he was elected by one vote, which gave the Democrats a small majority in the Legislature. There were a number of candidates for Senator. An Eighth of January supper, with speeches, came off, at which all the candidates were present and delivered addresses. That of William Allen took the Assembly by storm, and he was nominated and elected over Thos. Ewing, who was then in the Senate. He reached Washington on the evening of March 3, 1837, to witness the inauguration of Presidnet Van Buren, and to take his seat in the Senate the next day. Late at night he went to the White House, where he was cordially welcomed and agreeably entertained by Andrew Jackson, the retiring President, who was his fast friend and ardent admirer. Before the end of his first term, he was re-elected by a very handsome majority; and he remained in the United States Senate until the 4th of March, 1849, being then, at his retirement, one of the youngest members of that body.

During the twelve eventful years that he represented the State of Ohio in Senate of the United States, he took a prominent part in all the discussions upon the great questions that Congress had to deal with. Most of the time, and until he voluntarily retired, he was Chairman of the Committee on Foreign Relations, being entitled to that elevated position on account of his eminent ability. He had just reached the meridian of his splendid powers. Tall, of a majestic and commanding figure, with a magnificent voice, an opulence of diction seldom equalled, a vigorous and bold imagination, with much fervor of feeling and graceful and dignified action withal, he combined all the qualities of a great orator in that memorable era when the Senate was full of great orators — in the day of its greatest intellectual magnificence. And in all the years he was there he never uttered a word nor gave a vote that he had occasion to recall or change.

While Governor Allen was a member of the United States Senate he married Mrs. Effie McArthur Coons, the beautiful and accomplished daughter of General Duncan McArthur — his early, true and only love. She chose him from among a host of distinguished suitors from several States. She inherited the old homestead and farm, where Allen, having added many acres to the latter, with his daughter, Mrs. Scott, her husband and their children and his grandchildren resided, until the summons came.

Mrs. Allen died shortly after the birth of their daughter and only child, Mrs. Scott. In health and sickness, William Allen was a most devoted and affectionate husband; and, after the death of his wife, he rode on horseback with the remains from Washington City to Chillicothe. He never thought of marrying afterward; and it is almost certain that if he had not married her, his only love, he never would have married at all.

Governor Allen always possessed unyielding integrity, and ever strongly set his face against corruption and extravagance in every form. When he entered public life, he had the Postmaster General certify in miles the shortest mail route between Chillicothe and Washington City, and always drew pay for mileage according to that certificate. He refused constructive mileage, and after his retirement from the Senate, the Whig Congressman from his district offered to procure and forward to him $6,000 due him on that score; but he would receive none of it. William Allen and John A. Dix alone refused it.

No man was ever more true and faithful in his friendships than William Allen; and few public men have gone as far as he to maintain a straightforward consistency in this respect. He virtually declined the Presidency of the United States, rather than seem to be unfaithful to an illustrious statesman whom he loved and supported.

After he retirement from public life at Washington, Governor Allen greatly improved by study. He has since been a more profound man than he was at any time during his career in the Senate. He was a great historian, was deeply versed in philosophy and the sciences, and was better acquainted with rare books than almost any scholar one can meet. His home was the home of hospitality, and to visit him there was to receive a hearty welcome and a rare intellectual treat. His farm is not surpassed in any respect by any other farm in the magnificent valley of the Scioto; and, as a thrifty and successful farmer, no man in the State was his superior.

In August, 1873, William Allen consented to take the Democratic nomination for Governor of Ohio. He became satisfied that it was a duty he owed his party, and the people without distinction of party; and when it became a public duty, he promptly accepted the situation, and came forth from his retirement to make what nearly everybody, but himself and the writer and compiler of this sketch, deemed a hopeless race. He made an able and effective canvass, and was elected by nearly one thousand majority, being the only candidate on his ticket who was successful.

He was inaugurated Governor on the 12th of January, 1874, in the presence of the largest assemblage of people that was ever before at the capital of Ohio. His inaugural address was everywhere regarded as a magnificent State paper. The New York Tribune said it “was a very model of a public document for compactness and brevity, devoted to a single topic — the necessity of reducing taxes and enforcing the most rigid economy in all matters of State expenditure.” Upon this point the Governor said:

“I do not mean that vague and mere verbal economy which public men are so ready to profess with regard to public expenditures — I mean that earnest and inexorable economy which proclaims its existence by accomplished facts.”

“In the prodigality of the past, you will find abundant reason for frugality in the future.”

His appointments, and all other acts of his administration gave general satisfaction, and were commended by the people without distinction of party. His inauguration was the herald of a new era — “the era of good feeling” in Ohio. Colonel Forney, in his Philadelphia Press, but stated a universally recognized truth, when he said: “Governor Allen, of Ohio, is winning golden opinions from all parties by the excellence of his administration of the affairs of the State.”

At the close of his administration he again returned to private life and to “Fruit Hill,” his beautiful home, with the firm determination that he would never give them up again for public position.

The Democratic State Convention that was held the following summer (1876) in  the city of Cincinnati, endorsed William Allen as the choice of the Democracy of Ohio for the Presidency, and instructed the delegation from this State to support him in the then approaching Democratic National Convention. He esteemed that endorsement, by that grand Convention, as the highest compliment he had ever received. When the writer hereof informed him what the Convention had done, he replied: “I am content. I can receive no higher honor than that.”

William Allen was the last survivor of an illustrious line of statesmen. He, too, is gone. It is hard to realize it “His sun of light is set forever. No twilight obscured its setting.” A great man is dead, and the people of a great State and a great Nation will manifest in a thousand ways their sorrowing sympathy. His memory and the memory of his deeds “will outlive eulogies and survive monuments.”

The Portsmouth Times (Portsmouth, Ohio) Jul 19, 1879

***

Ohio History Central has a biographical sketch HERE.

Pension Poetry

July 8, 2010

Pension the School Teachers.

Why do you pension our police
When they have grown so old they cease
To longer guard the public peace.
Are they superior creatures?
And really ’tis beyond our ken
Why we should pay our firemen
Too old to work, a pension when
We quite neglect our teachers.

Those to whose care we trust our youth,
To guide in wisdom and in truth,
They are the very ones, forsooth,
Most worthy of attention.
And since their lives are worn away
In noblest work at paltry pay
We ought to see to it that they
In age secure a pension.

Chicago Evening Post.

The Daily Northwestern (Oshkosh, Wisconsin) Jul 5, 1890

A Plea to The Legislature.

Pension the lawyer who serves you as judge.
Pensions the lady who ladles out fudge.
Pension, be sure to, our noble police.
Pension your aunt, your uncle and niece.
Pension all public officials and sich.
Pension the sucker who fails to get rich.
Pension, of course, each down-trodden mother.
Pension the postman and clerical brother.
Pension the beastie we greet as our daddy.
Pension the kiddy who caters as caddy.
Pension the butcher who sells us our meat.
Pension the cobbler who covers our feet.
Pension the barber who skins us alive.
Pension the barkeep whose mixtures revive.
Pension, by all means, the regular preacher.
Pension, sure pop, the public school teacher.
Pension the plumber, although he’s a layman.
Pension his pal, the modest highwayman.
Pension the store girl, make her lot happy.
Pension her steady — cheer up the poor chappy.
Pension the single man ’cause he’s not married.
Pension the husband because he is harried.
Pension the plowman and pension the poet.
Pension yourselves, don’t mind how you go it.
Pension the black, the red and the yellow.
(And then, if there’s anything left,)
Pension God’s own, the newspaper fellow.

–Gazette Times.

New Castle News (New Castle, Pennsylvania) Mar 15, 1915

The Traitorous Copperheads (aka “Peace” Democrats)

May 24, 2010

THE COPPERHEAD’S DREAM.

A Copperhead one evening lay,
After the labors of the day,
And mused on chances of success,
And of the future strove to guess.
He’d envied every office holder,
and now, perhaps, grown somewhat bolder,
Thought that without some dire mishap
He’d get a share of public pap,
And with his golden hopes elated,
He ever pro and con debated;
He thought o’er every plot and scheme,
Then slept, and dreamt a pleasing dream.

He dreamt to office — when elected —
No more he loyalty affected,
But in his sinecure secure,
He had the loaves and fishes sure,
He in his office stretched at ease,
Had nought to do but pocket fees.
He dressed up in the height of fashion,
(For finery he had a passion),
Then tired of lounging, strutted ’round
As Fortunatus’ purse he’d found.
His quondam friends, when e’er he met,
(He quickly learned how to forget),
Especially the Union party,
(To whom his greeting once was hearty),
He gave a very frigid shoulder,
As well became an office holder;
And — tho’ for this his cronies praised him —
Kicked down the ladder that had raised him.

The noise it made was such a smasher,
That, like the basket of Alnaschar*,
It woke him up. Alas! ’twas day,
His dream of spoils had passed away,
Black night had raised its sable curtain,
And brought him back his state uncertain.
He rose, and girded up his loins,
And feeling no ways gay or frisky,
Went and bummed a little whisky.

Klamath Facts and Figures.

The Golden Era – Sep 10, 1865

Title: The Stanford Dictionary of Anglicised Words and Phrases
Editors: Charles Augustus Maude Fennell, John Frederick Stanford
Publisher: University press, 1892

COPPERHEAD SNAKES

Hide your mean heads from the light of the sun,
Smite your base hearts with conscience’s lashes,
Blush if you can for the deeds you have done.
Weep for the aid you have given to traitors,
Do let repentance illumine your souls;
Souls? if you had them your crimes would be greater,
Snakes of humanity crawl to your holes.
Brazen-faced Copperheads,
White-livered Copperheads,
Crawl to your holes!

You that incited rebellion and treason;
You that have aided it all that you can;
You that have fought against conscience and reason,
And all of the rights that are sacred to man,
Hark! — through the land, from each tower and steeple,
The knell of rebellion most solemnly tolls!
Flee from the scorn of intelligent people;
Noisome serpents — bah! crawl to your holes.
Crimson-faced Copperheads,
Rum-sucking Copperheads,
Traitorous Copperheads,
Crawl to your holes.

Now when the moon of rebellion is setting,
Why do you struggle and fight against fate?
Can you not cease your complaining and fretting?
Try to be men ere you find it too late.
The tide running northward in haste is retiring,
The wave urged by freemen triumphantly rolls,
The time has gone by for your plots and conspiring —
Reptiles and renegrades return to your holes.
Venomous Copperheads,
Low, sneaking Copperheads,
Vile, hissing Copperheads,
Crawl to your holes!

Village Record (Franklin Co., PA) Sep 16, 1864

NOTE: I ran across a couple of versions of the above poem.

Felix Grundy

Old Description of a Copperhead

In one of the speeches made during the last war with Great Britain, by Felix Grundy, of Tennessee, occurs the following description of a thorough-going Copperhead, as seen at the present day:

“An individual goes over, joins the ranks of the enemy, and raises his arms against his country; he is clearly guilty of treason under the Constitution, the act being consummated. Suppose the same individual not to go over to the enemy, but to remain in his own neighborhood, and, by means of his influence, to dissuade ten men from enlisting; I ask in which case has he benefited the enemy and injured the country most!”

Again, he says, in answering the question, whom, then, do I accuse?

“I accuse him, sir, who professes to be the friend of his country, and enjoys its protection, yet proves himself by his actions to be the friend of its enemy. I accuse him who sets himself to work systematically to weaken the arm of the Government, by destroying its credit and dampening the ardor of its citizens; I accuse him who has used his exertions to defeat the loan and prevent the young men of the country from going forth to fight their country’s battles; I accuse him who announces with joy the disasters of our arms, and sinks into melancholy when he hears of our success. Such men I cannot consider friends to this nation.”

Mr. Grundy was a model Democrat, in his day, we believe. Copperheadism does not seem to have been “Democracy” then. But “the fathers” were in darkness. The gospel of the new church had not opened its light upon them. Oulds and Vallandigham were not.

The Tioga County Agitator (Wellsborough, PA) May 4, 1864

DIALOGUE. — UNCLE SAM — SECESH — COPPERHEAD.

Secesh — Stoop down here, Uncle!

Uncle Sam — What for, Secesh?

Secesh — I want to cut your throat!

Uncle Sam — Guess not. It don’t want cutting.

Copperhead — Yes, stoop down, Uncle!

Uncle Sam — What! do you, too, want to cut my throat?

Copperhead — O, no — never! I wouldn’t do such a thing for the world! I only want to hold your arms pinioned behind your back while Secesh cuts it. That’s very different, you see!

Uncle Sam — No, I don’t see it.

N.Y. Tribune.

Morning Oregonian (Portland, Oregon) Sep 16, 1863

CURIOUS WILL

A will found at Port Royal, recently, by some Union soldiers there, presents a fact not often set forth out of DIXIE. The testator, John Cooper, of Caroline county, Va., gives his property to his wife and daughter, but to do this he is compelled to emancipate his wife, who was his slave, and thereby — according to aristocratic Virginia practice — legitimatize his bastard daughter, born of the aforesaid slave. Will some of our Copperhead Democrats please favor us with a lecture on amalgamation?

Morning Oregonian (Portland, Oregon) Jul 24, 1863

“It Pays to Economize”

April 15, 2010

NOTIFIES MEMBERS IN RHYME

County Clerk Charles Fischer has received the following verses from Monroe, Wis., where the poet, J.W. Stewart, is the clerk of Green county. The unique invitation is both good reading and timely. Few officials combine a love of statistics with the poetic gift.

NOTICE TO COUNTY BOARD MEMBERS.

You are hereby notified,
And this you must remember;
Go to your County Court House,
On the eleventh day of November.

‘Tis a meeting of the County Board
And that is the opening day;
So be there promptly on time,
And hear what there is to say.

No doubt you’ll enjoy your work,
while at your county seat;
May you have a harmonious session,
And have plenty of things to eat.

In this notice that I give you,
I’ll try to give you the facts;
It may aid you in your work,
As well as guide you in your acts.

Much State Aid Road has been built,
State expenses are also very high;
and when you pay your taxes,
It will almost make you cry.

You may call this state progressive,
Or the land of milk and honey;
But to pay the running expenses,
You bet, that takes some money.

We have a grand University,
Every state does look this way;
The property owners pay the taxes,
And the politicians make the hay.

Over a million, from the tax payers
For this institution, it does take;
In the ways of using money,
It does surely take the cake.

There are commissioners of all kinds,
And many systems, which are to come;
But the system for increasing taxes,
Has them all “going some.”

All these things are expensive,
Still, it was voted, don’t you know;
But the payment of high taxes,
May teach us to go slow.

This state is considered prosperous,
Will you tell me, what made it so?
Was it the State Highway Law?
Most emphatically, I say no!

It’s the industry of our people,
Who toil from morn till night;
With the aid of the dairy cow,
That’s made them win the fight.

‘Tis such men as, Moore and Babcock,
And the tillers of the land;
That’s made Wisconsin prosperous,
And not, our tax figuring band.

We may be prosperous now,
But we’er liable to lose our head;
As we may be taxed to death,
And be numbered with the dead.

Unless we make some changes,
I can see the handwriting on the wall;
That a new party, will take our place
About a year from this fall.

Then come prepared for business,
At this session of the County Board;
And help reduce the taxes,
From the point, to which they’ve soared.

Instruct the next Legislature,
Either by Resolution or otherwise;
To stop being so extravagant,
And to learn to economize.

Elect good men to represent you,
From the district, in which you live;
Then let “economy” be their motto
Or any other, that you choose to give.

I trust these lines will be read,
By people of every size;
Who should remember my motto,
“That it pays to economize.”

Here’s to the State of Wisconsin,
Here’s to the County of Green;
Which is the greatest dairy County,
That the world has ever seen.

Now remember my instructions,
And be there on the opening day;
I will now, bid you Good-bye,
As I have nothing else to say.

— J.W. STEWART,
County Clerk.

Sheboygan Press (Sheboygan, Wisconsin) Nov 8, 1913

MEASURES NOT MEN

By Douglas Malloch

Let’s vote for men not measures, truth not laws,
Concern ourselves not with effect but cause.
The leader is the army, judge the court,
And matter more than rules of every sort.
Platforms and precepts and ideals and creeds,
What are they all unless expressed in deeds?
The greatest nation or the smallest clan,
The thing that really matters is the man.

In men the land much always put its trust;
No law is just unless the judge is just.
I’d rather trust my fortunes to the wise
Than written wisdom that some knave applies.
A golden scepter is a tawdry thing,
However wise the law, if fool the king,
Men matter most, and so I say again,
Let’s vote for measures less, and more for the men.

Sheboygan Press (Sheboygan, Wisconsin) Dec 17, 1907

We Conquer or Die

March 22, 2010

Falchion (Image from Wikipedia)

THE WATCHWORD.

AIR — “To the Mountain.”

They are coming! are coming! and hark how their cheer,
Like the roar of ocean surf bursts on the ear;
They are coming! are coming! from East and from West,
In grandeur and gloom like the thunder-cloud’s crest;
They are coming! are coming! the sons of the North,
And the land of the South pours its chivalry forth.
Ten thousand bright banners are beaming on high,
Each bearing our watchword, ‘We conquer or die.’

Democracy’s bugle hath sounded the call,
And its soldiers are pouring from hamlet and hall,
To flock round the standard of justice and right,
In the pride of their soul and strength of their might,
and woe to the foeman who stands in their path,
As they press to the field in the gloom of their wrath.
Ten thousand bright banners are beaming on high,
Each bearing our watchword, ‘We conquer or die.’

On the falchion of earb is the flash of the morn,
Each one on the altar of freedom hath sworn
That his sword returns not to the place of its rest
Till his cause be revenged & his wrongs be redressed;
Till the pillar of Freedom in triumph ascends,
A cloud to its foes and a light to its friends.
Ten thousand bright banners are beaming on high,
Each bearing our watchword, ‘We conquer or die.’

Come rally! come rally! bright, bright beams the day,
For the noble YOUNG HICKORY shadows the ‘CLAY,’
Come rally! come rally! a charge and a shout,
As the blast of our bugle rings cheerily out,
Come rally! come rally! one effort to save
“The land of the free and the home of the brave.”
Ten thousand bright banners are beaming on high,
Each bearing the watchword, ‘We conquer or die.’

[Paraphrased for the Albany Argus.

The Experiment (Norwalk, Ohio) Jul 10, 1844

*****

We Conquer or Die by James Pierpont (Lyrics Link)