Katharine Lee Bates - Autograph Poem Signed For SaleKATHARINE LEE BATES
Her signed, handwritten poem "To The Old Year"
Autograph Poem signed: "Katharine Lee Bates", 1p, 7¾x5¾ lined sheet. Signed beneath the title, "To the Old Year". Eight lines of the poem. In full: "Auf wiedersehen! For we shall meet before/The Throne of God. The drifting snows confuse/Thy footprints. Down the echoing wind I lose/Thy voice. So be it. We shall meet once more./When from the grave of time thou comest again/To front my soul in Judgment, witness bear/To error, failure, sin; but, oh, my prayers,/My strife forget thee not. Auf wiedersehen!" At end: "Independent. [word crossed out]." Katharine Lee Bates (1859-1929), who had joined the faculty of Wellesley College as Professor of English Literature in 1886, is best known for writing "America the Beautiful". Inspired by a trip to Pike's Peak, the original four-stanza poem was first printed in the July 4, 1895 issue of "The Congregationalist" newspaper. Several revisions were made before its publication in the "Boston Evening Transcript" in 1904. Popularly sung to the music of Samuel A. Ward's "Materna", "America the Beautiful" was a strong contender to become the country's national anthem. In a 1931 proclamation by President Herbert Hoover, however, the honor went to the "Star-Spangled Banner". Bates kept the copyright to her poem to prevent its alteration but never sought royalties for its publication or performance. Bates also authored several travel books and a history of American literature in addition to her volumes of poetry. Light type transfer on verso (no show through) from having sat on another document. Fine condition.
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