Woman's Work in the Civil War: A Record of Heroism, Patriotism and Patience

By L. P. Brockett; Mary C. Vaughan | Go to book overview

BARBARA FRIETCHIE.

BARBARA FRIETCHIE was an aged lady of Frederick, Maryland, of German birth, but intensely patriotic. In September, 1862, when Lee's army were on their way to Antietam, "Stonewall" Jackson's corps passed through Frederick, and the inhabitants, though a majority of them were loyal, resolved not to provoke the rebels unnecessarily, knowing that they could make no effectual resistance to such a large force, and accordingly took down their flags; but Dame Barbara though nearly eighty years of age could not brook that the flag of the Union should be humbled before the rebel ensign, and from her upper window waved her flag, the only one visible that day in Frederick. Whittier has told the whole story so admirably that we cannot do better than to transfer his exquisite poem to our pages. Dame Barbara died in 1865.


BARBARA FRIETCHIE.

Up from the meadows rich with corn,
Clear in the cool September morn,

The clustered spires of Frederick stand,
Green-walled by the hills of Maryland.

Round about them orchards sweep,
Apple and peach trees fruited deep,

Fair as a garden of the Lord
To the eyes of the famished rebel horde,

-761-

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