Pioneer Tribute

This is a poem set to the tune of "Old Dan Tucker".  It was written by Captain Edmund L. Ellsworth for the First Company of Handcart Pioneers to sing as they pushed and pulled along on their way from Iowa City to Zion in Utah.

When from Iowa City first we started,
with our friends in tears we parted.
Our arms and legs were very weak,
our handcarts loudly they did creak.

So get out of the way, the handcarts are rolling,
Zion's children now are coming.

When to the sandy road we came,
we called upon both old and lame.
Out of the wagons for to get,
and around the handcarts form a set.

So get out of the way, the handcarts are rolling,
Zion's children now are coming.

Our sisters, they stout hearted were,
and seldom ever shed a tear.
They pulled their handcarts all along,
and cheered up on with joke and song.

So get out of the way, the handcarts are rolling,
Zion's children now are coming.

But we had some young men so faint hearted,
so that their handcarts soon they parted.
Their legs were weak and toes were sore,
so into the wagons they went to snore.

So get out of the way, the handcarts are rolling,
Zion's children now are coming.

But when a ship was brought in sight,
it seemed to set all things quite right.
For their toes got well and legs got strong,
and with their handcarts they jogged along.

So get out of the way, the handcarts are rolling,
Zion's children now are coming.

When in our tents so close we fitted,
our toes and arms you might have pitied.
But when a cup of tea was ended,
all angry words were then suspended.

So get out of the way, the handcarts are rolling,
Zion's children now are coming.

The little toes they trudged along,
forgetting all but Zion's songs.
Their little feet in blisters were,
but seldom did they shed a tear.

So get out of the way, the handcarts are rolling,
Zion's children now are coming.

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I live in the present yet feel for the past
Seeking connections and roots that outlast
The change of the seasons, the distance of time
Stories and people who I can call mine

Someone who's part of me -- Who will that someone be?

For the hearts of the children are turning
Turning to fathers they've never seen
And the hearts of the fathers are burning
With the promise of what will be

Play the song "The Hearts of the Fathers are Turning" by Steven Kapp Perry