The red man's bark on every stream
Once Stirred the limpid waves;
His homes were spread along the vales.
And on the hills his graves.
Fearless he bounded o'er the wood,
Proud of the wide domain;
It was his own, his father-land -
Who could his birthright claim?
A band of exiles, wan and sad,
Sought out that sea-laved shore;
They made their homes deep in the wild,
Where the wigwam smoked before,
They reared proud domes 'neath sunny skies,
And mighty cities stood
Where erst the panther made his lair,
Amid the darkling wood.
Woe, yet not long - a kindly hand
Seeks out the spurned and lost;
It brings a balm for wounded hearts,
A gift of countless cost.
Salvation, for the wretch that strays
Long o'er the cheerless wild!
Mercy in gentile accents woos
Her lost and exiled child.
Go yea who bear the priceless gift.
To those who pine and die,
And breathe the strains of dying love,
Commissioned from on high.
Go, gather to a Savior's fold
The forestís wandering son,
And hear, when Christ shall claim his own
Servants of God, well done!"
[From the Tennessee Baptist, July 13, 1850. Scanned and formatted by Jim Duvall.]
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