The Kansas Emigrants





This poem and the three following were called out by the popular

movement of Free State men to occupy the territory of Kansas, and by the

use of the great democratic weapon--an over-powering majority--to settle

the conflict on that ground between Freedom and Slavery. The opponents

of the movement used another kind of weapon.



WE cross the prairie as of old

The pilgrims crossed the sea,

To make the West, as they the East,

The homestead of the free!



We go to rear a wall of men

On Freedom's southern line,

And plant beside the cotton-tree

The rugged Northern pine!



We're flowing from our native hills

As our free rivers flow;

The blessing of our Mother-land

Is on us as we go.



We go to plant her common schools,

On distant prairie swells,

And give the Sabbaths of the wild

The music of her bells.



Upbearing, like the Ark of old,

The Bible in our van,

We go to test the truth of God

Against the fraud of man.



No pause, nor rest, save where the streams

That feed the Kansas run,

Save where our Pilgrim gonfalon

Shall flout the setting sun.



We'll tread the prairie as of old

Our fathers sailed the sea,

And make the West, as they the East,

The homestead of the free!

1854.





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