Three Patriotic Songs for Memorial Day

America (My Country ’tis of Thee)
America the Beautiful
This Land Is Your Land

America (My Country ’tis of Thee)Vincent Aderante, My Country 'tis of Thee, oil on canvas.

My country, ’tis of Thee,
Sweet Land of Liberty
Of thee I sing;
Land where my fathers died,
Land of the pilgrims’ pride,
From every mountain side
Let Freedom ring.

My native country, thee,
Land of the noble free,
Thy name I love;
I love thy rocks and rills,
Thy woods and templed hills,
My heart with rapture thrills
Like that above.

Let music swell the breeze,
And ring from all the trees
Sweet Freedom’s song;
Let mortal tongues awake;
Let all that breathe partake;
Let rocks their silence break,
The sound prolong.  More verses


Harvest Still Life by Howard Taft LorenzAmerica the Beautiful

Words by Katharine Lee Bates

O beautiful for spacious skies,
For amber waves of grain,
For purple mountain majesties
Above the fruited plain!
America! America!
God shed his grace on thee
And crown thy good with brotherhood
From sea to shining sea!

O beautiful for pilgrim feet
Whose stern impassioned stress
A thoroughfare for freedom beat
Across the wilderness!
America! America!
God mend thine every flaw,
Confirm thy soul in self-control,
Thy liberty in law!

O beautiful for heroes proved
In liberating strife.
Who more than self the country loved
And mercy more than life!
America! America!
May God thy gold refine
Till all success be nobleness
And every gain divine!  More verses


American Flag Whirligig, Folk ArtThis Land Is Your Land

by Woody Guthrie

This land is your land,
This land is my land,
From California
To the New York island,
From the redwood forest,
To the Gulf stream waters,
This land was made for you and me.

As I was walking
That ribbon of highway,
I saw above me
That endless skyway,
I saw below me
That golden valley.
This land was made for you and me.

I’ve roamed and rambled
And I’ve followed my footsteps
To the sparkling sands of
Her diamond deserts.
And all around me,
A voice was sounding,
This land was made for you and me.

The sun comes shining
As I was strolling,
The wheat fields waving,
And the dust clouds rolling.
The fog was lifting,
A voice come chanting,
This land was made for you and me.  More verses


Images (from top):

Vincent Aderante, My Country ’tis of Thee, oil on canvas, Smithsonian American Art Museum.

Howard Taft Lorenz, Harvest Still Life,  1937, Smithsonian American Art Museum, Transfer from The Museum of Modern Art.

American Flag Whirligig, mid 20th century, painted iron and carved and painted wood, Smithsonian American Art Museum. Gift of Herbert Waide Hemphill, Jr. and museum purchase made possible by Ralph Cross Johnson.