154 Indian Names (1834) By Lydia Sigourney

“How can the Red men be forgotten, while so many of our states and territories, bays, lakes and rivers, are indelibly stamped by names of their giving?”


Ye say, they all have passed away,

That noble race and brave,

That their light canoes have vanished

From off the crested wave;

That ‘mid the forests where they roamed

There rings no hunter shout;

But their name is on your waters,

Ye may not wash it out.


‘Tis where Ontario’s billow

Like Ocean’s surge is curl’d.

Where strong Niagara’s thunders wake

The echo of the world.

Where red Missouri bringeth

Rich tribute from the west.

And Rappahannock sweetly sleeps

On green Virginia’s breast.


Ye say, their cone-like cabins,

That clustered o’er the vale,

Have fled away like withered leaves

Before the autumn gale:

But their memory liveth on your hills,

Their baptism on your shore,

Your everlasting rivers speak

Their dialect of yore.


Old Massachusetts wears it

Within her lordly crown.

And broad Ohio bears it

Amid his young renown;

Connecticut hath wreathed it

Where her quiet foliage waves.

And bold Kentucky breathes it hoarse

Through all her ancient caves.


Wachuset hides its lingering voice

Within his rocky heart,

And Alleghany graves its tone

Throughout his lofty chart;

Monadnock on his forehead hoar

Doth seal the sacred trust.

Your mountains build their monument,

Though ye destroy their dust.



Becoming America, Wendy Kurant, ed., CC-BY-SA

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