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Section 20

Its People and Institutions as I knew them about Sixty Years ago.


Wednesday, July 28, 1897


While shadows and darkness o’er my landscapes are cast,
And visions of sadness rise thick o’er my way,
Bewildered, I wander o’er scenes of the past
Recalling the years of my schoolmates in play.

The journey of many is finished ere this,
Some early in life and some later in years
And many, no doubt, in the fulness of bliss,
And some it may be, through the valley of tears.

The roll I might call, but I dread the reply,
The answer for many, reported would be
"They’ve finished their work and have said their good-bye,
Don’t call for them here, for they’ve crossed the Dead Sea."

Their names have I pondered and numbered them o’er,
Their haunts have I searched and the woods where we played;
In vain is my search for I find not a score,
The currents of time such a chasm has made.

In honor of those whom I now recollect,
Lamented and gone to the bourne of the blest;
In tribute of sorrow my pen shall erect,
Memorials here that shall tell of their rest.

The Shaws in the east, I know them so well
Havilah and David my seniors in years,
Who lived on the farm near the book and the dell,
They’ve crossed the dark valley of sorrow and tears.

The Websters were here; William, Mary and Jake,-
I’ve played with them oft in the hide and go seek,
They sleep in repose till the trumpet shall wake
The dust in their graves and they come with the meek.

The Killams on the lane in the distance remote;
Payzant, I remember, to Jesus has gone,
His early departure in sorrow I note,
From labor he rested in life’s early dawn.

Again on that lane with the grass overgrown;
The farm and the home of the Crockers were there,
And Sarah and Rachel, two sisters well known,
But Zeph early closed his short journey of care.

The Woodworths – Amanda and Ermina too
The daughters of Dudley, who lived on the hill;
And Rachel out west and her lone Elihu,
Repose in their slumber, their names fragrant still.

And Annie and Ebie, the Brydens at rest,
And little Nehemiah to me most dear,
The son of the Squire from his home in the west;
I think of them now in the bright shining sphere.

And Annie, my sister, the truest of girls,
Her life of devotion, a volume of grace,
More treasured by me than an ocean of pearls
Mid blooms of the orange she finished her race.

Now these and the others I’ve failed to recall,
Companions at school in my study and play,
Be this epitaph here inscribed for you all;
"We’ll meet here again in the great rising day."