Newspaper History presents media sourced from a United States newspaper dating back 108 years.

  • The Battle Autumn

    From the Grand Forks Daily Herald, December 4, 1914. By John G. Whittier.

    What means the gladness of the plain,
        This joy of eve and morn,
    The mirth that shakes the beard of grain
        And yellow locks of corn?

    Ah! eyes may well be full of tears,
        And hearts with hate are hot,
    But even-paced come ‘round the years,
        And nature changes not.

    She meets with smiles our bitter grief,
        With songs our groans of pain;
    She mocks with tint of flower and leaf
        The war field’s crimson stain.

    Still, in the cannon’s pause, we hear
        Her sweet thanksgiving psalm;
    Too near to God to doubt or fear,
        She shares the eternal calm.

    She knows the seed lies safe below
        The fires that burst and burn;
    For all the tears of blood we sow
        She waits the rich return.

    She sees with clearer eye than ours
        The good of suffering born—
    The hearts that blossom like her flowers,
        And ripen like her corn.

    O, give to us, in times like these,
        The vision of her eyes;
    And make her fields and fruited trees
        Our golden prophecies!

    O, give to us her finer ear!
        Above this stormy din.
    We, too, would hear the bells of cheer
        Ring peace and freedom in!