There was a tumult in the city
In the quaint old Quaker town,
And the streets were rife with people
Pacing restless up and down-
People gathering at corners
Where they whispered each to each,
And the sweat stood on their temples
With the earnestness of speech.
As the bleak Atlantic currents
Lash the wild Newfoundland shore
So they beat against the State House
So they surged against the door
And the mingling of their voice
Made the harmony profound
Till the quiet street of Chestnut
Was all turbulent with sound.
Will they do it? dare they do it?
Who is speaking? What's the news?
What of Adams? What of Sherman?
Oh, God grant they won't refuse!
Make some way there! Let me nearer!
I am stifling! Stifle then!
When a nation's life's at hazard
We've no time to think of men!
So they surged against the State House
While all solemnly inside
Sat the Continental Congress
Truth and reason for their guide
O'er a simple scroll debating
Which though simple it might be
Yet should shake the cliffs of England
With the thunders of the free.
Far aloft in that high steeple
sat the bellman old and gray
He was weary of the tyrant
And his iron-sceptered sway
So he sat with one hand ready
On the clapper of the bell
When his eye could catch the signal
The long-expected news to tell.
See! See! The dense crowd quivers
Through all its lengthy line
As the boy beside the portal
Hastens forth to give the sign!
With his little hands uplifted
Breezes dallying with his hair
Hark! with deep, clear intonation
Breaks his young voice on the air.
Hushed the people's swelling murmur
Whilst the boy crys joyously
Ring! he shouts, Ring! Grandpapa
Ring! oh ring for Liberty!
Quickly at the given signal
The old bellman lifts his hand
Forth he sends the good news making
Iron music through the land.
How they shouted! What rejoicing!
How the old bell shook the air,
Till the clang of freedom ruffled
The calmly gliding Delaware!
How the bonfires and the torches
Lighted up the night's repose
And from the flames like fabled Phoenix
Our glorious liberty arose!
That old State House bell is silent
Hushed is now its clamorous tongue
But the spirit it awakened
Still is living-ever young;
And when we greet the smiling sunlight
On the fourth of each July
We will ne'er forget the bellman
Who, betwixt the earth and sky,
Rung out, loudly, "Independence";
Which please God shall never die!
Everyone have a nice 4th of July
Remember our History
Freedom is not free!