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Julia Ward Howe

所属教程:People in America 更新:11-30
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VOICE ONE:

I'm Ray Freeman.

VOICE TWO:

And I'm Shirley Griffith with the Special English program, PEOPLEIN AMERICA. Every week we tell about a person important in thehistory of the United States.

Today, we tell about Julia Ward Howe. She wrote one of the greatsongs of the American Civil War, the "Battle Hymn of the Republic."

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VOICE ONE:

Marching soldiers. No end to the lines of soldiers marchingacross the land. They came from the Northern states fighting to keepthe Union together. And they came from the Southern states fightingfor a separate Confederate government that would protect their rightto have slaves. In summer and winter, the fighting continued. Thesun burned like fire. The soldiers marched on. The cold winter windsblew snow in their faces. The soldiers marched on.

The United States was a nation cut in two by a bitter struggleover slavery and a state's right to leave the Union. America's CivilWar lasted four years. It destroyed the land. And it destroyed theyoung men of the nation.

VOICE TWO:

Many stories have been told about the soldiers of the Civil War.They have told of the soldiers fear and terror, their great andheroic acts, how they suffered and died, and how they sang beforeand after battle. One song, more than any other, caught the spiritof the Union soldiers of the North. The song is the "Battle Hymn ofthe Republic." Here is the first part of the song, sung by Odetta:

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VOICE ONE:

The words are religious. They are like a hymn, a song of praiseto God. This is the story of the woman who wrote the song.

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VOICE TWO:

The place was Washington D.C. The year was Eighteen-Sixty-One. Itwas a wet winter night. There were thousands of soldiers in thecity. The hospitals were full. The field of battle was just acrossthe Potomac River in the southern state of Virginia.

A woman lay asleep in her hotel room. She had had a long, hardday. She had come to Washington to visit the Union troops. The sightand sounds of the soldiers gave her no rest. Even in her sleep sheseemed to hear them. She heard their sad voices as they sat besidetheir fires. She heard them singing. They sang a marching song sheknew. It was a song about John Brown, an activist against slavery.The song told about how his body turned to earth in the grave. Ittold about how his spirit lived on.

VOICE ONE:

The woman's name was Julia Ward Howe. She was a writer and socialreformer. She was born in New York City in Eighteen-Nineteen. Herfather was a wealthy banker. Julia married Samuel Gridley Howe. Hewas a reformer and teacher of the blind. Julia and Samuel Howe movedto Boston. Missus Howe raised five children. And she publishedseveral books of poetry.

VOICE TWO:

Julia Ward Howe and Samuel Gridley Howe were leaders in themovement in America to end slavery. They published an anti-slaverynewspaper called the "Commonwealth."

Missus Howe had met John Brown. Like him, she was an anti-slaveryactivist. She opposed those Americans who used black people asslaves. Unlike him, she did not approve of using violence to endslavery.

In Eighteen-Fifty-Nine, John Brown tried to start a revolt ofslaves. He led an attack on Harper's Ferry, a town in what was thenthe state of Virginia. [Editor's note: That area did not become thestate of West Virginia until 1863.] The town had a factory that madeguns for the army. It also had a storage center for militaryequipment. The attack on Harper's Ferry failed. John Brown was puton trial for treason. He was found guilty and was executed.

VOICE ONE:

In the northern states, John Brown became a hero. His story wastold through song. The song was most popular with soldiers. Itbecame the unofficial marching song of the Union Army.

Julia Ward Howe also liked to sing the song. She felt that themusic was beautiful, but the words about John Brown were not. So shedecided to write different words to the music.

Those words came to her that night as she lay in her hotel roomin Washington. She was awakened by her dreams of marching soldiers.

VOICE TWO:

"I found to my surprise that the words were forming themselves inmy head. I lay still until the last line had completed itself in mythoughts.

Then I quickly got out of bed. I thought I would forget the wordsif I did not write them immediately. I looked for a piece of paperand a pen. Then I began to write the lines of a poem:

'Mine eyes have seen the glory of the coming of the Lord. He istrampling out the vintage where the grapes of wrath are stored, Hehath loosed the fateful lightning of His terrible swift sword, Histruth is marching on.'

I wrote until I was finished. Then I lay down again and fellasleep. I felt something important had happened to me."

VOICE ONE:

An American magazine, "The Atlantic Monthly," bought MissusHowe's poem. She was paid four dollars. The magazine published thepoem in Eighteen-Sixty-Two. The poem became very popular. It hadjust the right words for the great marching music. The soldiers ofthe Union Army began to sing the words Julia Ward Howe had written.It soon became their official marching song -- "The Battle Hymn ofthe Republic."

VOICE TWO:

Julia Ward Howe became famous. She was invited to the White Houseto meet President Abraham Lincoln. After dinner at the White House,the guests talked about the Civil War. They were sad. The Union armyhad suffered many defeats. Then someone began to sing the "BattleHymn of the Republic." Missus Howe and President Lincoln joined inthe singing. There were tears in the President's eyes. Here is thelast part of the song, sung by the Mormon Tabernacle Choir:

((MUSIC))

VOICE ONE:

After the North won the Civil War in Eighteen-Sixty-Five, JuliaWard Howe became involved in other social reform movements. Shebecame a leader in the movement to gain equal rights for Americanwomen, including the right to vote. She helped establish the NewEngland Woman's Club in Eighteen-Sixty-Eight. This organizationworked for equal rights for women in education and business. Sheserved as president of the group for more than thirty years.

VOICE TWO:

Julia Ward Howe also became involved in the movement for peace.In Eighteen-Seventy, she issued an "Appeal to Womanhood Throughoutthe World." This was a call for an international conference of womento support the peaceful settlement of conflicts. The next year shehelped organize the American group of the Woman's InternationalPeace Association. She became president of the group.

Julia Ward Howe continued to write books and make speeches aboutthe issues she felt were important. Through the years, thousands ofpeople came to hear her recite her most famous poem. She died inNineteen-Ten. She was ninety-one years old.

VOICE ONE:

The "Battle Hymn of the Republic" still is one of America's greattraditional songs. No one knows for sure who wrote the music. Butthe song lives on. And so does the name of the woman who made themusic famous with her words: Julia Ward Howe.

(THEME)

VOICE TWO:

This Special English program was written by Shelley Gollust. Itwas produced by Lawan Davis. I'm Shirley Griffith.

VOICE ONE:

And I'm Ray Freeman. Join us again next week for another PEOPLEIN AMERICA program on the Voice of America.

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