Thursday, December 25, 2014

"A Winter Piece" from the Woodstock Northern Memento (1805)

[The following production is copied from the "Northern Memento,"published at Woodstock, (Vermont) in which it is published as original. It is no ordinary specimen of blank versification; and happily combines the sublime morality of Cowperwith the life-giving fancy ofThomson.]

A WINTER PIECE.

"Dread WINTER comes at last to close the scene."

—YES, Winter comes!

'Tis but a moment since the smiling Spring

On Zephyr's downy wing rejoicing came,

And op'd, and kiss'd the coyly-blushing rose.

Then Nature from her sleep awoke serene,

And dress'd herself anew.—At his approach,

Tall hills of snow ran down with gratitude;

The lofty mountains rais'd their melting heads,

And, in the face of heaven, wept for joy;

The little riv'lets ran to find the sea,

And join to swell the thankful song of praise.

But, ah! their joy was short! their songs have ceas'd,

All nature sleeps again:—dread Winter's here.

The Lapland Giant comes with pendant ice,

Chill horror shooting from his gelid chin;

Nor lakes, nor seas, can stop his rough career:—

He builds his bridge across old ocean's breast.

Affrighted, Sol retires with hasty strides,

And dares not but obliquely downward look,

On his once conquer'd, now his conquering foe.

The earth is all in weeds of mourning clad,

To wail the loss of her departed friend;

Th' unconquer'd evergreen is left alone,

And nods defiance to the northern blasts.

    This mirror paints the fate of changing man.

This moment youth, with all its op'ning charms,

In playful mood, sits laughing in his face:

His swelling heart now beats with sanguine hope

Of satisfying bliss, and full blown joy:

He hugs himself in this fantastic dream,

And thinks that nought can blast the vernal flow'r,

But, while anticipation gilds the wing of hope,

The frigid hand of Time with furrows deep,

His forehead ploughs; and blights the pleasing view.

"Then let fair virtue's seed in youth be sown;

"'Twill prove an evergreen in hoary age

"And flourish in the Winter of our years:—

"'Twill waft us to the realms of peace and love,

"To taste th' ecstatic bliss of saints on high;

"There happiness will spring without alloy,

"And seraphs chaunt their neverending strains."

Northern Budget. December 31, 1805: 4 col 1.

I'd helped deliver Revolutionary War veteran Abial Bugbee's new granite veteran's marker from Lansingburgh to Pomfret, Vermont earlier this year, which took us through Woodstock, a nice-looking place.

The poem was reprinted a couple times without attribution to the short-lived Northern Memento (it lasted from May 1805 to February 1806 http://chroniclingamerica.loc.gov/lccn/sn84023397/ ).

The Spirit of the Public Journals; Or, Beauties of the American Newspapers For 1805. Baltimore, MD: Geo. Dobbin & Murphy, 1806. 298-299. https://books.google.com/books?id=1foqAAAAMAAJ&pg=PA298&lpg=PA298

The Churchman's Magazine 4(1). January 1807. 35-36. https://books.google.com/books?id=TFMQAAAAIAAJ&pg=PA35

"On the Nativity of Christ" (1815) [1734]

ON THE NATIVITY OF CHRIST.

What sounds harmonious strike the ears!

See! darkness flies, the light appears,

The sun a purer beam displays,

And shines with more distinguish'd rays.


Ev'n nature's self with cheerful grace,

In triumph shews her radiant face.

Odours diffuse, ye spicy beds;

Cedars, bow down your awful heads.


Soft streams, your joys in murmurs tell;

And boisterous waves, exulting swell.

Messiah comes ——in homage now,

Let universal nature bow.


Glory to God, who reigns above,

Fountain of universal love.

Good-will to men that dwell below,                ⎫

Let peace on earth eternal flow;                    ⎬

Thus heavenly breasta in friendship glow.        ⎭


Let men redeem'd their joys resound,

And angels pleas'd return the sound

Since wildly through th' abandon'd skies,

Th' arch rebel in confusion flies,

And a new heaven and earth take place,

Which Adam's sons restor'd shall grace.

Northern Budget December 26, 1815: 4 col 1.

The poem isn't original to Troy, and is much older than 1815 - apparently tastes had remained fairly stable?

The London Magazine December 1734. 660-661.

"Snow" (1824)

        In looking over our old files, we accidentally came across the following Impromptu; & having nothing in particular, to fill our poet's corner we thought it would not come a miss to republish it. We apprehend the Farmer<, Merchant, Tavern-keeper, and "folks in every rank and station," are ready to exclaim with the poet—"why the d—l don't it SNOW."

SNOW.

AN IMPROMPTU.

This is January twenty,

When we should have sleighing plenty;

I am tired, altogether,

Of such sour, unpleasant weather;

Easy 'tis to rein and blow—

Why is it so hard to snow?


See the Farmer, wet and weary,

Stalking o'er the plains so dreary;

Oft he upwards turns his peepers,

Blinking like a chimney sweeper's;

Oft he cries, enrag'd with woe,

"Why d—l don't it snow?"


See the Merchant, sorry fellow,

With a face as pale as tallow—

Sick with grief, and quite bed ridden—

All because there is no sleddin!

Hear him cry, in accents slow,

O! ye gods! why don't it snow?"


See the chop fall'd Tavern keeper,

Voluntarily a sweeper?

See his bar room, once so cheery,

Now forsake, cold and dreary?

Hear him cry, with spirits low,

"Curse the luck! why don't it snow?


Hear the sage Prognosticator,

Blame these slipp'ry tricks of nature;

She so oft his judgment bothers,

That he knows no more than others;

Hear him road, with wrinkled brow,

"Curse my stars! why don't it snow?


Folks in every rank and station,

Join in fretful exclamation—

Tailors, tinkers, parsons, pedlars,

Sawyers, teamsters, smiths and fiddlers,

Rich and poor, or high and low,

Hope and swear—for want of snow


For myself—though press'd with sorrow,

Still in hopes 'twill snow to morrow,

To be patient I endeavor;

Faith! such times can't last forever;

Hear the stormy south east blow—

May it waft us hills of snow.


O! ye gods, who rule the weather!

Neptune—Jove—or both together—

Lend, for once, an ear propitious,

Hear our prayers and grand our wishes:

Down your frosty blessings throw—

Cover—smother us—in snow.

Northern Budget. February 17 1824: 4 col 1.

December 25, 2014 in the Capital District area was a snowless one, and the first few hours of sun after what's seemed like a few weeks of overcast days.

There's an earlier appearance of "Snow" in The Port Folio but it credits the Northern Budget so it's possible that paper's reference to its "old files" is a reference to a prior publication by them, not of poems they may have clipped and kept from others or that they may have been sent by readers.


The Port Folio 3(12). March 21, 1807. 185-186. https://books.google.com/books?id=UIo4AQAAMAAJ&pg=PA185

Saturday, December 13, 2014

"A Christmas Ride" by Mrs. Le Grand Benedict (1870)

A Christmas Ride.

BY MRS. LE GRAND BENEDICT.

Oh, children, I've something to tell you

        About what has happened to me,

And I wish it had only been managed

        That you had been with me to see.


It was just on the night before Christmas,

        The streets were all carpeted white,

The man in the moon sat there laughing,

        And hurridly shaking down light.


Our stockings were hung in the chimney,

        So white and so pretty and neat,

One big one, one smaller, one wee one,

        All lank from the tops to the feet.


And mamma had pleasantly told us

        To hurry ourselves into bed,

But that she must sit up until midnight

        To hear what old Santa Claus said.


'Twas a very long while after this time,

        While Johnny and Lou were asleep,

I was sure that I heard a strange talking,

        And I went to the doorway to peep.


And whom should I see but St. Santa,

        A-laughing and muttering low,

And I knew by the lumps in the stockings,

        That he was just ready to go.


So I crept soft and still close beside him,

        "Well, well, well, little one," so he said,

"Come, I think that you'll have to go with me,

        Or you'll tell all my secrets in bed."


Oh, wasn't I terribly frightened

        When he put his strong arm round my waist,

And bounded up the dark, sooty chimney

        With me folded close to his breast!


And there on the roof were the reindeer

        And the sleigh about which I'd been told;

Down he sat me in that, in my night gown,

        And I never once thought of the cold.


The cushions were snow and the lap-robes,

        Though as warm as an eider-down quilt,

And the sleigh and the reins and the trappings,

        Were a-blaze with bright scarlet and gilt.


The little sleigh-bells commenced tinkling

        When merry old Santa sat down;

He laughed at and petted and cheered me

        While we drove on our trip about town.


And when to the edge of the house-top

        We came along frightfully near,

Old Santa chirped up to the reindeer,

        And said I had nothing to fear;


The fleet-footed, dear little creatures

        Gave a toss to their heads and a jump,

And down we came safely and soundly

        On the opposite side, with a bump.


Old Santa had oceans of business

        To tend to between this and light,

And mountains of toys to distribute

        To many good children that night.


And when he went down in the chimneys,

        He carried me with him to see,

And once he went in a church window

        And trimmed up a green Christmas tree.


And all of the while on our journey

        The angels sang time and again,

"Give glory to God up in Heaven,

        On earth peace and good will unto men."


And once in a while poor old Santa

        Would wipe a great tear from his eye;

And I said, "Why, I think it is funny

        That Santa Claus ever should cry!"


He answered, "My dear little daughter,

        There are many good children who live

To whom,—why, you'll understand later,—

        I am never permitted to give.


Do you think you can spare, on to-morrow,

        A book, or a sweetmeat, or toy,

From out of your large stock of treasures,

        To give some poor little one joy?"


Sometimes we would come to a house-roof

        Where a wind from the fireplace would cry,

"Bad boys, naughty girls; do not come here!"

        And Santa would heave a deep sigh.


And when all the cows, and the horses,

        And trumpets, and dollies, and skates,

Were safe in the stockings of Jimmies,

        And Lizzies, and Tommis, and Kates,


The man in the moon looked quite sleepy,

        And so did the stars in the sky,

And so did the reindeer and Santa,

        And really, I think, so did I.


The next thing I knew it was daylight,

        And Johnny and baby were round;

They yelled in my ears "Merry Christmas

        See what in our stockings we've found!"


Every word I have said is true gospel,

        Though papa and mamma do smile,

They say that they think I've been dreaming,

        But I know more than that all the while.

Troy Times. January 1, 1870: 4.

The author of the poem might have been Emma Frances Gardner, born in Troy, who married Le Grand Benedict in 1863. They lived in Lansingburgh and later moved to Brooklyn.

One of several different origin stories for the dish Eggs Benedict involves Mr. and Mrs. Le Grand Benedict:

"To the Editor: I am writing to correct the statement by Edward P. Montgomery concerning the origin of Eggs Benedict, as reported recently by Craig Claiborne. The true story, well known to the relations of Mrs. LeGrand Benedict, of whom I am one, is as follows. Mr. and Mrs. Benedict, when they lived in New York around the turn of the century, lunched every Saturday at Delmonico's. One day Mrs. Benedict said to the maitre d'hotel, 'Haven't you anything new or different to suggest?' On his reply that he would like to hear something new from her, she suggested poached eggs on toasted English muffins with a thin slice of ham, hollandaise sauce and a truffle on top. This recipe has gone around the world. Commodore E. C. Benedict, who was given the credit, was a cousin and undoubtedly enjoyed these eggs, but it would have been unlike him to have called them his inventions. The name is occasionally given, erroneously, as 'Eggs Benedictine.'--Mabel C. Butler, Vineyard Haven, Mass."

---Letters to the Editor, New York Times, November 26, 1967 (p. SM 40)

http://www.foodtimeline.org/foodeggs.html

Saturday, December 6, 2014

authorship of "A Visit from St. Nicholas"

        The contention was raised this Yuletide that a Major Henry Livingston, not Clement Clarke Moore, wrote "A Visit from St. Nicholas." And on what evidence? On the fact that the late Mr. Livingston once used the very same meter in these lines left by him:

        To my dear Brother Beekman I sit down to write,

        Ten minutes past eight, and a very cold night.

*        *        *

        Nonsense! The real author of the verse was a man named Elmer Twitchell 1st, a famous fighter in the Indian wars. This is proved conclusively by these lines found in an old powder horn:

To my darling Aunt Minnie who keeps a stuffed parrot;

It's quarter of seven, with rats in my garret.

Phillips, H. I. "The Sun Dial." The Sun [NY]. December 28, 1944: 13 col 2.

"While Bethlehem Slept" by Frances V. Hubbard (1918)

While Bethlehem Slept.

BY FRANCES V. HUBBARD.

The city slept, some saw the star

        That led the Wise Men on their way,

Nor yet the wondrous light that shone

        On Bethlehem's plain, more bright than day.


None heard the angel's voice that spoke—

        Not one in Bethlehem's ancient town—

Nor saw the white-robed shining host

        From heaven to earth come floating down.

Yet, none the less, the star, the voice,

        Were there, upon that Christmas morn,

And clear rang thro' the chilly air

        The song, "The Prince of Peace is born."


To-day we hear no voice, no star

        Shines thro' the gloom, we hear no song,

The tumult and the strife of war

        Call me to arms in deadly throng.


Yet, as of old, beyond our sight,

        Perchance more near than we can dream,

The Star, that star, is shining bright

        And o'er the earth in peace may beam.


Again, thrilling the world with joy,

        The angel song may ring some morn,

With meaning glad for all mankind,

        "Rejoice forever! Peace is born!"

Troy Times. January 9, 1918: 15 col 1.

"The God-Led Magi" by Rev. Joseph C. Booth (1925)

The God-Led Magi.

BY (REV.) JOSEPH C. BOOTH.

The God-led Magi came from far,

Attracted by the signal star,

        That woke the slumbering earth;

When Christ, the Son of God, was born,

On that auspicious Christmas morn,

        When Angels sang His birth!


Now, when they reached Jerusalem

King Herod was alarmed by them

        And troubled in his mind;

Directing them to march with vim,

To bring the tiding back to him,

        If they the Child should find.


Behold! the star is shining still

And hovering over Bethlehem's hill,

        Whose light their spirits stir;

There, there they find the Promised King.

To Him their grateful offerings bring:

        Gold, frankincense and myrrh!


Being warned of God, the Scriptures say:

The Wise Men went another way,

        Back to their native clime;

Ignoring Herod's vain command,

Because they found, as God had planned,

        The King of Kings sublime!

        Branden, Vt.

Troy Times. December 26, 1925: 16 col 6.

"Christmas Comfort" by Annie S. Wallis (1925)

Christmas Comfort.

Luke II, 11.

BY ANNIE S. WALLIS.

Unto us a Savior born,

        Unto us the Friend Divine;

He that loved us, He that bore

        All the grief of yours and mine;

Holy Love to dry each tear,

        Keep us safe, 'mid shadows dim;

Merry Christmas! Glad New Year!

        "More than conquerors through Him!"

Troy Times. December 26, 1925: 16 col 6.

"An Old Newspaper" by William Lyle (1886)

AN OLD NEWSPAPER.

BY WILLIAM LYLE.

Yes, there it lies, faded, crisp and yellow,

        And what a world of wondrous things it tells.

It is well the editor, poor fellow,

        Is far beyond the reach of chestnut bells,

The jokes were fewer then, and not so bold,

But, to my thinking, they were quite as old.


Births, deaths and marriages, half a column—

        Some neatly terse, and some elaborate,

Ah! the shortest might have filled a volume,

        Had it set forth the freaks men have with fate.

Poor, frail humanity, so far away,

Is just like poor humanity to-day.


Let's see the other page—is it better?

        Alas! why should it—'tis the same old world.

Here's the very crank who writes a letter

        To prove that time is just about unfurled.

And here's the idiot who thinks he knows

Much better than the paper "how things goes."


There are many ads., all quaintly written,

        But then they tell their plain, unvarnished tales,

And here were some ventures, where some were bitten,

        And some to riches sailed with spreading sails.

While here and there an item pokes its head,

With the rank fumes of politics o'erspread.


Now turn once more, that's the poets' corner—

        What, there were no poets in those old days—

Men were wiser then—go to, thou scorner!

        Time never saw a year without their lays,

And never will, while this old earth's afloat,

Despite what saucy Stedman ever wrote.


Just here we may do some moralizing:

        Poor old sheet, where are all the moving heads

That framed your squibs and blest your advertising,

        And spaced you out so nice with double leads?

They ache no more—they've passed across the tide,

Peace be their portion on the other side.


My saffron friend, I own to your failings,

        But you had virtues I would not ignore—

You printed no portraits, all your ailings

        May be condoned upon that worthy score.

Of course, you can't expect to vie in dress

With this here dandy of the modern press.


You had no phones, and you had no cable,

        To tell you things that never come to pass;

You had no telegraph near your table,

        Yet after all you were not quite an ass.

You worked great wonders with the tools you had,

And need not blush, my lemon-visaged lad.


Now I shall bid farewell, just like others,

        I must make up with new things as they come.

Still I shall regard you all as brothers,

        Although, of course, you have been long from home.

Among such company you may seem rude,

But, never mind, they shall not call you dude.


Well, yes, they're beauties, sure ink and paper

        Well, yes, they're beauties, sure ink and paper

        Can never go beyond this perfect line.

With due allowance for pride and caper,

        You'll own yourself that they are very fine.

I lay you part, just now, my friend, but when

I would compare, I'll bring you out again.

Weekly Detroit Free Press. October 2, 1886: 1 col 6.

"A Christmas Poem" by Dr. B. F. Leggett (1890)

A Christmas Poem

BY DR. B. F. LEGGETT.

Many and many a year ago,

        In the land beyond the sea,

The shepherds hailed the wondrous star

        That arose for you and me.


Endless the light of its kindled flame

        As it shone in beauty there.

And fair was the light that drifted down

        To earth from the startled air.


Rising, they wondered, and lo! a song

        Came down from the skies afar,

And sages came from the morning land,

        Led on by the gleaming star.


Ringing to-day is the chorus still—

        The beautiful song we know,

The "Peace on earth and good will to men,"

        That came from the long ago.


Yearning and weary, they waited long

        Till banners of strife were furled—

Till the darkness waned and morning came

        With sunrise-hope for the world.


Cheering the earth with a strain sublime,

        On hovering wings they came,

And the waiting world was glad to hear

        The sound of the wondrous name!


Heavy and sad had the nations bowed

        While waiting the years to bring

The Hope of the world foretold so long—

        Messiah, the royal King!


Rising, they went where the bright star led,

        With a glory as of morn,

Till it stood above the far white walls

        Where the infant Christ was born.


Into the streets of the dreaming town

        The kings and the sages filed,

With treasures of frankincense and gold

        For the manger-cradled child.


Slowly they tuned from the lowly stall

        Where the babe in beauty lay,

But the angel strain rings on and on

        In the Christmas song to-day,


Telling of peace by the couch of pain—

        Or of a love that lingers here,

Eternal hope of a breaking dawn

        That filleth the world with cheer.


Mellow and sweet as the angels' song

        On the star-lit hills of old.

The hope that sings in the loyal heart

        By faith in the long foretold.


Alas for us, if our love shall fail,

        Or the wondrous star grow dim,

If one can grow dull and hear no more

        The strains of the angels' hymn!


Sweetly, O song of the eastern hills,

        Ring on through the world for aye,

Till peace on earth and good will shall reign

        For an endless Christmas day!

        WARD, Penn.

Troy Weekly Times. December 25, 1890: 6 col 1.

"The Star of Bethlehem" by Myra Maude Hayden (1889)

The Star of Bethlehem

BY MYRA MAUDE HAYDEN

Across the Arabian desert the wind blew keen and strong.

Smiting the lonely palm trees into a strange, sweet song;

Scooping sand from the level, rolling billows of sand,

Thundering down the distance a volley of music grand.


The wind blew keen in the faces of three camels, strong and white,

Moving like vapor shadows through the opalescent light—

And the wise men had grown weary with watching for the star—

Three kings—Melchoir and Gaspar and the Egyptian Balthasar.


Into the West they journeyed: the palm trees sang no more:

The space grew long between them and the sand sea's barren shore.

The eyes of the watchers, moving soft as shadows fly,

Were fixed in steadfast longing on the dark'ning, desert sky.


A desolate, wind-swept silence came down on the frosty plain,

By earthly sounds unbroken, save the shake of a bridle chain.

As the sacred Syrian camels with quick trot forward swung,

Over the river Jordan the moon like a gold globe hung.


From the farthest reach of vision, from the outer edge of space,

Stars jeweled the heaven, tinting the night's glad face.

The weary wise men watching, marked with no surprise

A lambent flame like glory afar in the east arise.


With thrilling souls and breathless, they saw the shimmering flood

Narrow, contract and lessen—with awe it stirred their blood,

And with trumped voice they shouted and the cry rang clear and far.

"We thank the God of our fathers! the Star of our faith, the Star!"


Thro' the streets of the Holy City gladly the wise men came,

The starlight's frosty glitter grew warm by the brazier's flame,

Where, at the gate of the palace, spikenard and aloes burned.

Cleaving the smoke of the incense, into the court of Herod they turned.


There the wise men halted at the mouth of frescoed room

Where jeweled disk and column shot into the deep rich gloom

Of the outer court or chamber a shower of colors rare.

A guard to the radiance pointing, said: "Enter, The king is there."


A censer of gold exhaling rare perfumes of sandalwood

Swung from a chain of crystal, a mellow moon-like flood;

Of wondrous light down streaming in an eddying, golden ring

Fell on the face of Herod, on the face of Herod the King.


Into this ruin and riot of color which warmed the king's slow blood

Entered the wise men slowly, each in a thoughtful mood.

"Who are you, sirs? Whence came you?" haughtily Herod asked.

And with many questions he straightway the wise men tasked.


"We give thee peace, O Herod. We are couriers of glad news.

In the land of Judea is born the Christ, King of the Jews.

And king of the world, O Ruler—" Ashen the face of Herod the Great.

While deep in their hoary sockets glowed his eyes with a terrible hate.


Then, as a cloud's deep shadow rolls over a rugged plain,

Letting the sun of summer in splendor fall again,

So the cloud of his anger rolled from Herod the King,

On his face the light down streaming fell in a golden ring.


Forth at his eager summons attendants quickly sped,

From a splendid inner chamber rich stuffs o gold and red,

And royal, pulsing purple, jewels and perfumes sweet

With lowly, glad obeisance they laid at the wise men's feet.


"Take these gifts of purple, and these robes lined warm and deep,

Go, follow the morning star—loiter not, nor sleep;

Search for the child and find him, then tidings quickly bring,

That I may go and worship this Christ, Judea's King."


Forth from the royal chamber gladly the wise men came,

Joy in their hearts upspringing at sight of the moving flame,

Straight thro' the gate of Joppa they followed, paused and turned—

Over the manger lowly the Star of Redemption burned.


With prayer and glad ovations they worshipped the new-born child,

While God from his heavenly distance looked down on them and smiled.

And being warned in a vision, the tidings they should not bring,

They came no more to the city in the days of Herod the King.

Troy Weekly Times. December 25, 1889: 3 col 6.

"December 26, 1862" by Castella Esperanza Eddy Sherwin (1891)

December 26, 1862.

BY MRS. W. F. SHERWIN.

"Her sun went down while yet 't was day,"

And shadows fell across her way.

Her timid heart beat wild with fears,

Her dark blue eyes were filled with tears,

Her long brown hair was damp with dew,

Her feet were bruised with many a stone,

For she had wandered far from home.

It was so dark for her to roam

"The valley of death"—my child alone.

Then a "still small voice" to her did say:

"O weary child thou canst not see,

But 'my rod and staff shall comfort thee.'"

Her path grows light—from miles afar

Shines forth the blessed Christmas star;

While distant bells their sweet chimes ring,

She hears the herald angels sing,

"Peace on earth, good will toward men."

And then her path grows strangely bright—

For her the day has dawned; no night

Of pain, nor sorrow evermore;

Her feet have reached the blessed shore.

A boatman pale with muffled oars

Stands ready with his boat to sail afar

And guide her safely to "the gates ajar."

The ministering angels meet her there,

And for His courts her soul prepare.

Her feet they dress in pink and white,

To match her robes of heavenly light.

Flowers they give her—roses rare,

And on her head of dark brown hair

They place the Christmas star;

For all who enter in at Christmas-tide

Must wear the emblems of the King,

Whose birth to-might the herald angels sing.

Upon her breast the angels place,

In gems of fadeless lilies, the child-Christ's face.

Her form they veil in airy white,

And then, amid translucent light,

The pearly gates are opened wide.

My child, whom I called dead, did rise

A soul redeemed from Paradise.

Beyond the gates the palace stands,

Built strong and stately, without hands.

The regal splendor of this mansion fair

Is only known to those who dwell within—

"The Prince of Peace" and those redeemed from sin.

Archangels led my child up to the throne,

And Christ, her Saviour, said in mildest tone:

"No more art thou a child of earth.

Thy soul redeemed hath found its birth

In the eternal sunshine of my smile.

Thou art a princess child to those who wait below awhile;

Thou hast my star upon thy forehead fair,

And on thy breast, in lilies, rests my child-face there.

Upon thy finger now I place my signet ring;

Forever more thou art a daughter of the King."

        ELMIRA, N. Y., Dec. 26, 1890.

Troy Daily Times. January 3, 1891: 5 col 4.

Florence Eddy Sherwin died December 26, 1862 in Elmira, NY at the age of one year and two months. She's buried in Waterford Rural Cemetery, though her twin sister who also died in infancy might be buried elsewhere. Information per the listing for Eddy, Florence [sic] at the Saratoga NYGenWeb at http://www.saratoganygenweb.com/WATE.htm . The poem, as it appeared in the newspaper, seems to have the title "December 26, 1882," but is somewhat unclear .

Castella Esperanza Eddy Sherwin was a daughter of Isaac Eddy (1777-1847), a prominent citizen of Waterford and father of a number of notable inventors including George Washington Eddy, the founder of the Eddy Valve Company. His home has a RiverSpark historical marker in front of it: https://lh6.googleusercontent.com/-Ez8L-blkoGg/UiyAnEkJExI/AAAAAAAAESk/sFnjxj3vM08/s640/blogger-image--1401715076.jpg