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But a deadly chill comes o’er me, as the day loonis
up before me, When a thousand men lay bleeding on the slopes
of Bunker's Hill.
'T was a peaceful summer's morning, when the
first thing gave us warning 19 Was the booming of the cannon from the river
and the shore : “ Child,” says grandma, “what's the matter,
what is all this noise and clatter ? Have those scalping Indian devils come to murder
us once more ? "
Poor old soul! my sides were shaking in the midst
of all my quaking, To hear her talk of Indians when the guns began
15 She had seen the burning village, and the
slaughter and the pillage, When the Mohawks killed her father with their
bullets through his door.
Then I said, “Now, dear old granny, don't you
fret and worry any, For I'll soon come back and tell
whether this is work or play;
to Charlestown, annoyed on the way by the Americans who followed and accompanied them.
16. The Mohawks, a formidable part of the Six Nations, were held in great dread, as they were the most cruel and warlike of all the tribes. In connection with the French they fell upon the frontier settlements during Queen Anne's war, early in the eighteenth century, and committed terrible deeds, long remembered
New England households.
There can't be mischief in it, so I won't be gono
20 For a minute then I started. I was gone the live.
No time for bodice-lacing or for looking-glass
grimacing ; Down my hair went as I hurried, tumbling half
way to my heels; God forbid your ever knowing, when there's blood
around her flowing, How the lonely, helpless daughter of a quiet
25 In the street I heard a thumping ; and I knew it
was the stumping Of the Corporal, our old neighbor, on that wooden
leg he wore,
I had found him,
They were making for the steeple, the old sol
dier and his people; 30 The pigeons circled round us as we climbed the
creaking stair, Just across the narrow river - Oh, so close it
made me shiver ! Stood a fortress on the hill-top that but yesterday
Not slow our eyes to find it; well we knew who
stood behind it, Though the earth work hid them from us, and the 35 Here were sister, wife, and mother, looking wild
stubborn walls were dumb.
upon each other, And their lips were white with terror as they said,
THE HOUR HAS COME!
The morning slowly wasted, not a morsel had we
tasted, And our heads were almost splitting with the can.
nons' deafening thrill, When a figure tall and stately round the rampart
strode sedately ; 10 It was PRESCOTT, one since told me; he com
manded on the hill.
Every woman's heart grew bigger when we saw
his manly figure, With the banyan buckled round it, standing up so
straight and tall ; Like a gentleman of leisure who is strolling out
for pleasure, Through the storm of shells and cannon-shot he
walked around the wall.
45 At eleven the streets were swarming, for the red
coats' ranks were forming; At noon in marching order they were moving to
40. Colonel William Prescott, who commanded the detachment which marched from Cambridge June 16, 1775, to fortify Breed's hill, was the grandfather o. William Hickling Prescott, the historian. He was in the field during the entire battle of the 17th in command of the redoubt.
42. Banyan - a flowered morning gown which Prescott is said to have worn during the hot day, a good illustration of the up:
How the bayonets gleamed and glis d, as we
looked far down, and listened To the trampling and the drum-beat of the belted
At length the men have started, with a cheer (it
seemed faint-hearted), 50 In their scarlet regimentals, with their knapsacks
on their backs, And the reddening, rippling water, as after a sea
fight's slaughter, Round the barges gliding onward blushed like
blood along their tracks.
So they crossed to the other border, and again
they formed in order ; And the boats came back for soldiers, came for
soldiers, soldiers still: 55 The time seemed everlasting to us women faint
and fasting, At last they're moving, marching, marching
proudly up the hill.
We can see the bright steel glancing all along the
lines advancing – Now the front rank fires a volley — they have
thrown away their shot; For behind their earthwork lying, all the balls
above them flying, 60 Our people need not hurry; so they wait and anThen the Corporal, our old cripple (he would
military appearance of the soldiers engaged. His nonchalant walk upon the parapets is also a historic fact, and was for the encouragement of the troops within the redoubt.
swear sometimes and tipple),
French war) before,
6.5 “Oh! fire away, ye villains, and earn King
ye 'll waste a ton of powder afore a 'rebel'
falls; You may bang the dirt and welcome, they 're as
safe as Dan'l Malcolm Ten foot beneath the gravestone that you've splintered with your
62. Many of the officers as well as men on the American side bad become familiarized with service through the old French war, which came to an end in 1763:
67. Dr. Holmes makes the following note to this line: “ The following epitaph is still to be read on a tall gravestone, standing as yet undisturbed among the transplanted monuments of the dead in Copp's Hill Burial Ground, one of the three city (Boston) cemeteries which have been desecrated and ruined within my own remembrance:
“ IIere lies buried in
Aged 44 years,
And one of the foremost