America the Beautiful

While choosing memory work for the children, My Man discovered that the version of America the Beautiful which we know was not the original poem.

The first four lines of each verse are much the same today as in the original, but the ends of each verse have been significantly altered. For instance,

Verse 3, popular version

America! America!
May God thy gold refine;
Till all success be nobleness
And every gain divine!

Verse 3, 1893 version

America! America!
God shed His grace on thee
Till selfish gain no longer stain,
The banner of the free!

We’ve decided to memorize the 1893 version, as we think the ideals it portrays are better.  You can see the full text of both version at the Wikipedia page.


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