Verse > Anthologies > William McCarty, ed. > The American National Song Book
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William McCarty, comp.  The American National Song Book.  1842.
 
Battle of Tippecanoe
 
AWAKE! awake! my gallant friends;
  To arms! to arms! the foe is nigh;
The sentinel his warning sends;
  And, hark! the treacherous savage cry.
    Awake! to arms! the word goes round;        5
    The drum’s deep roll, the fife’s shrill sound,
    The trumpet’s blast, proclaim through night,
    An Indian band, a bloody fight.
 
O haste thee, Baen! alas! too late;
  A red chief’s arm now aims the blow;        10
(An early, but a glorious fate;)
  The tomahawk has laid thee low.
    Dread darkness reigns. On, Daviess, on!
    Where’s Boyd? And valiant Harrison,
    Commander of the Christian force?        15
    And Owen? He’s a bleeding corse.
 
“Stand, comrades brave, stand to your post:
  Here Wells, and Floyd, and Barton; all
Must now be won, or must be lost;
  Ply briskly, bayonet, sword, and ball.”        20
    Thus spoke the general; when a yell
    Was heard, as though a hero fell.
    And, hark! the Indian whoop again—
    It is for daring Daviess slain!
 
O! fearful is the battle’s rage;        25
  No lady’s hand is in the fray;
But brawny limbs the contest wage,
  And struggle for the victor’s day.
    Lo! Spencer sinks, and Warwick’s slain,
    And breathless bodies strew the plain:        30
    And yells, and groans, and clang, and roar,
    Echo along the Wabash shore.
 
But mark! where breaks upon the eye
  Aurora’s beam. The coming day
Shall foil a frantic prophecy,        35
  And Christian valour well display.
    Ne’er did Constantine’s soldiers see,
    With more of joy for victory,
    A cross the arch of heaven adorn,
    Than these the blushing of the morn.        40
 
Bold Boyd led on his steady band,
  With bristling bayonets burnish’d bright:
What could their dauntless charge withstand?
  What stay the warriors’ matchless might?
    Rushing amain, they clear’d the field,        45
    The savage foe constrain’d to yield
    To Harrison, who, near and far,
    Gave form and spirit to the war.
 
Sound, sound the charge! spur—spur the steed,
  And swift the fugitives pursue—        50
’Tis vain: rein in—your utmost speed
  Could not o’ertake the recreant crew.
    In lowland marsh, in dell, or cave,
    Each Indian sought his life to save;
    Whence, peering forth, with fear and ire,        55
    He saw his prophet’s town on fire.
 
Now, the great Eagle of the West,
  Triumphant wing was seen to wave:
And now each soldier’s manly breast
  Sigh’d o’er his fallen comrade’s grave.        60
    Some dropp’d a tear, and mused the while,
    Then join’d in measured march their file;
    And here and there cast wistful eye,
    That might surviving friend descry.
 
But let a foe again appear,        65
  Or east, or west, or south, or north;
The soldier then shall dry his tear,
  And fearless, gayly sally forth.
    With lightning eye, and warlike front,
    He’ll meet the battle’s deadly brunt:        70
    Come Gaul or Briton; if array’d
    For fight—he’ll feel a freeman’s blade.
 
 
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