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A poem about Tell City from 1908

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A poem written by F. J. George on the occasion of Tell City’s semicentennial celebration in 1908 was recalled as the city’s centennial observance approached in 1958. It is to be sung to the tune of “Maryland, My Maryland” or “O Tannenbaum.” A copy was furnished to the News in time for the centennial in 1958 by Mrs. William Becker. It was given to her by Theodore “Doc” George, son of the late F. J. George. She recalled it and passed a copy on to the News. F. J. George was a teacher and scholar and the grandfather of then Mayor Nick Beumel.

From East and West, From North and South, We welcome you.
Our hearts and hand. Are reaching out, to shake with you.

The sons and daughters of the band,
 Who years ago from Switzerland, Came from the mountains over the sea. To cast their lot in this country.

These hardy sturdy sons of Tell,
With sweat on brows subdued the soil;
Prepared the land, cut down the trees.
To make a home for you and me.

The virgin forest rang with sound.
From ax and hammer all around,
Till in their midst right in the wood.
Our dear old home. Tell City stood.

From hamlet to a town it grew.
The houses and the factories too. Sprang up so fast, that all could see. Their work of
Pantisocracy.

These pioneers with brain and brawn.
Kept working from morn till dawn,
They turned out wagon, molded plow.
They did it well for they knew how.

In all their factories you can see. The wheels all hum in harmony. From baby stool to rocking chair. They make as nice as anywhere.

Furniture of all descriptions.
In our factories may be found. If you wish to go housekeeping, Don’t forget to call around.
Our product goes to East and West,
Because ‘tis known to be the best. And that which goes to North or South, Makes happy homes without a doubt.

Right at the foot of Humbolt Hill,
there stands Tell City Planing Mill,
Where poor men’s orders get same care as those of the richest millionaire.

When other banks throughout the land.
Quit paying out and left their stand,
Ours held their own against the shock.
They stood like Chickamauga Rock.

Among great Industries of fame.
Is counted our Tell City Name, No better anywhere is found. It covers many squares of ground.
We have now right here at hand,
A grand industry, our Brick Plant, The people all from far and near. May order their supply right here.

Now while you’re here, go round and see.
Our churches, schools, and factories. Our City Hall and many stores. And other industries by scores.

The school bell on the hill proclaims.
To everyone the honored names.
Of lads and lassies sweet as cake. That their good mothers used to bake.

They’re scattered now o’er land and sea.
 It matters not where they may be,
We know that they will stand the test. They’re always counted among the best.

Now don’t forget while you are here. We have the best of Lager beer. But if you are not very dry. Just take a drop of Rock and Rye.

Go where you will in every house.
The people have a little Schmaus Schweitzerkaes and pumpernickles, Wiener Wurst and sour pickles.

Just sit down, be of good cheer. We are so glad that you are here. That no man that you see about. But, feels that he would like to shout.

“Lebe Hoch,” tis our cry, Vater, Mutter, Kind, Herbie; All at home again we meet.
This is surely joy complete.

Hubs and spokes to make the wheels.
That skim along one hardly feels.
Are made of Obrecht Sons and Heirs, Just runs your buggies anywheres.

With timbers strong as best whalebone.
Strike any knob or stick or stone,
The wheels remain all sound they say. For they are like the “One Hoss Shay.”

Tell City Flouring Mills you know. Does not stand alone for show. All weeklong from Monday morn. It keeps on grinding wheat and corn.

Its flour is said to be so white. That should you ever be lost at night. One thimble thrown in the air. Will light you plainly anywhere.

Our baker’s bread is all so light. That it will
almost take its flight. For every loaf that they have made. Has laid the others in the shade.

While you’re here be sure to stop. And see Tell City’s Machine Shop, There you will find as I can state. That they have right up to date.

And near upon the river’s brink. You’ll find our Woolen Mills, I think if ever you want a lasting suit. They make the goods with which to do it.

Fine apple-jack and corn juice too. Are made expressly here for you. The Krogman, Acme both indeed have best of flavor and fine bead.

Our barbers too will give you a shave. As fine as ever a barber gave. If you but wait a little while. They’ll cut you hair in latest style.

Our butchers sell as good a meat.
As anybody wants to eat. They make bologna and head cheese, I’m sure they cannot help but please.

Our Music Band when put to test. Can play sweet music with the best,
When their director gives the sign. All members march and fall in line.

Our coopers always make things hum. They drum away biddy-bum-bum-bum. They turn out barrels, kegs and tubs. They make just as round as hubs.

The Heading Factory is astir; The folks are most afraid of her. Because some say if aught you do. They’ll surely put a head on you.

The deeds of all good folks, I guess. Are told by our newspaper press.
Sometimes we think they are to blame.
Because, they do not print our
name.

Now if you wish to have them know. Which way that you intend to go. Go
to the printer, tell him all on who that you intend to call.

Of early settlers, four or five. Are still among us and alive. We hope that
they may long remain. To see that they’ve not planned in vain.

“Ein Lebe Hoch,” to those good men. Who’ve gone beyond this mortal
ken. We hope that some day we may rest. Beside those heroes with the blessed.

Before you leave us you must know. That we all hate to see you go. Our parting song is but the strain. That says to you “COME BACK AGAIN, COME BACK AGAIN, COME BACK AGAIN.”