Massachusetts-born Poet: Katharine Lee Bates

Today is Flag Day so as I hung our American flag
from the front porch, I started to sing America
the Beautiful and began to research the
back story of the beautiful piece of music.

Katharine Lee Bates was head of the English
Department at Wellesley College who spent
the summer of 1893 teaching at Colorado
College in Colorado Springs. She and

other teachers decided to go on a trip
up the 14, 110′ high Pikes Peak. What a
trip that must have been in a hired prairie
wagon. Bumpy ride. Near the summit,

the group had to go the rest of the way
on mules. Katharine was tired but felt
enormous joy at the wonder she viewed
at the summit. She later wrote the

poem which was published in 1895. Samuel
A. Ward composed a hymn tune which used
Bates’ poem in 1910 and called it America
the Beautiful. Bates was ahead of her time.

So as we celebrate Flag Day this June 14
and Father’s Day on Sunday June 16, let
us be grateful for what we have in our
lives and in this country called the U. S. A.

Happy Flag Day!         Happy Father’s Day!


America the Beautiful

O beautiful for spacious skies, for amber waves of grain
For purple mountain majesties, above the fruited plain
America, America, God shed His grace on thee
And crown thy good with brotherhood, from sea to shining sea

O beautiful for Pilgrim feet, whose stern impassioned stress
A thoroughfare for freedom beat, across the wilderness
America, America, God mend thine every flaw
Confirm thy soul in self control, Thy liberty in law

O beautiful for heroes proved, in liberating strife
Who more than self their country loved, and mercy more than life
America, America, May God they gold refine
Till all success be nobleness, and every gain divine

O beautiful for patriot dream, that sees beyond the years
Thine alabaster cities gleam, undimmed by human tears
America, America, God shed His grace on thee
And crown thy good with brotherhood, from sea to shining sea. Peak Cog Railway) the Summitt of Pikes Peak)

This entry was posted in America the Beautiful, Flag Day, Happy Father's Day, Katharine Lee Bates, Pikes Peak Colorado, Samuel A. Ward and tagged , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

9 Responses to Massachusetts-born Poet: Katharine Lee Bates

  1. Thanks for this beautiful post, dear Mary Ann… ❤ God Bless America!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Peter Klopp says:

    I did not that ‘America the Beautiful’ is based on a poem. Vielen Dank für die interessante Information, Mary Ann!

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Clare Pooley says:

    How interesting, Mary Ann! I enjoyed the videos you shared.

    Liked by 1 person

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