The Emancipation Group
Lines for the Unveiling of the Emancipation Statue in Boston, 1879, John G. Whittier.
Amidst thy sacred effigies
Of old renown give place,
O city, Freedom-loved! to his
Whose hand unchained a race.
Take the worn frame, that rested not
Save in a martyr's grave;
The care-lined face, that time forgot
Bent to the kneeling slave.
Let man be free! The mighty word
He spake was not his own;
An impulse from the Highest stirred
These chiseled lips alone.
The cloudy sign, the fiery guide,
Along his pathway ran,
And Nature, through his voice, denied
The ownership of man
We rest in peace where these sad eyes
Saw peril, strife and pain;
His was the nation's sacrifice,
And ours the priceless gain.
O symbol of God's will on earth
As it is done above!
Bear witness to the cost and worth
Of justice and love.
Stand in thy place and testify
To coming ages long
That truth is stronger than a lie
And righteousness than wrong.
Taken from 1906 edition of The Story-Life of Lincoln