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The moated walls to scale,
Nor is it yet the heroes' fault
Once and again they fail.
Too steep, too high, too strong, the walls,
Too hot the cannon's breath,
Too thickly fly the deadly balls,
Too many fall in death!
The spade and shovel here must win
If triumph ever come;
Their song must mingle with the din
Of cannon and of drum!
So through the sutlry summer days
They onward dig their way;
Vain all attempts the siege to raise,
Or long their work delay!
The heroes labor long and well,
Slowly the stronghold near,
While day and night fly shot and shell
To keep the foe in fear!
The city proudly bears its scars,
The people hide in caves,
And cursing still the Stripes and Stars,
There many find their graves!
But closer draws the giant coil,
Want stares them in the face,
In vain is all their arduous toil,
They cannot hold the place.
And Vicksburgh by the river side
So long the rebel boast,
Falls from its dizzy height of pride
Before the loyal host.
And on that joyful summer morn,
The great day of the year
That symbols still a nation born,
There waves the flag so dear!
And many a shout goes up that day
In paeans loud and grand,
Long peals of joy to find their way
In echoes through the land;
As for a nation born again
On this its natal day,
Born for a gift of nobler men
Through Freedom's larger sway!
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