Skip to main content

O Beautiful for Spacious Skies Hymn Composer: Katharine Lee Bates, 1859-

The History of O Beautiful For Spacious Skies Hymn

Miss KATHARINE LEE BATES, professor of English Literature in Wellesley College, is the author of this hymn. She wrote it in 1893 while on a Western tour that brought her first to the Columbian Exposition in Chicago. The patriotic impressions made upon her mind by the wonderful White City she bore westward with her as she journeyed to Colorado; and when at last she stood on the summit of Pike's Peak and beheld the far-spreading panorama below and the spacious skies above, her soul was stirred by the thought of the
Katharine Lee Bates
greatness and the God-given destiny of America. These lines were set ringing in her heart, and into a noble poem she has woven the beauties of that mountain-top vision: 

O beautiful for spacious skies, 
For amber waves of grain, 

For purple mountain majesties 
Above the fruited plain! 

Each verse is crowned with a prayer that to the physical beauty of her native land God may add the highest moral beauty: 

America ! America ! 

God shed His grace on thee, 
And crown thy good with brotherhood 

From sea to shining sea ! 

Horatio Parker, one of the greatest of contemporary American composers, wrote the music, "America the Beautiful," to which this hymn is set; though it is frequently sung, and most effectively, to the tune "Materna"

O Beautiful For Spacious Skies Lyrics

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 their country loved,
And mercy more than life!
America! America!
May God thy gold refine,
Till all success be nobleness,
And every gain divine.

O beautiful for patriot dream
That sees beyond the years
Thine alabaster cities gleam,
Undimmed by human tears!
America! America!
God mend thine every flaw,
Confirm thy soul in self control,
Thy liberty in law.

O Beautiful For Spacious Skies youtube video




For more lyrics and stories of old hymns visit here.

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

Heaven Came Down and Glory Filled My Soul Hymn

Story Behind Heaven Came Down  Heaven Came Down is a hymn that is of recent origin as it was written in 1961 by John W Peterson. It draws its inspiration from a testimony delivered by an old man named Jim at Montrose Bible Conference Grounds, Pennsylvania. During the testimony talked of his conversion experience. In the testimony he used the phrase, "It seemed like Heaven came down and glory filled my soul." It is this phrase that inspired John W Pearson to write a song using this phrase later that week.  John W Peterson wrote over a thousand hymns but it is this song that has touched and continues to touch millions of Christians all over the world. He died on September 20, 2006, at the age of 84 after suffering from prostate cancer. It is so sweet to entrust and surrender our lives to our Savior and Lord Jesus Christ. Heaven does literally come down into our hearts when we do that. John W Peterson Heaven Came Down and Glory Filled My Soul

Popular and Old Hymns Lyrics and History

This blog exists to share the history and lyrics of popular hymns and old hymns that people have come to love over the years. It is only when you go behind what led to the authors writing these songs that you start to appreciate the message of these songs. While preaching is still the most effective way of spreading the gospel, Christian music has helped in "seasoning"  the presentation of the gospel. It has in some cases even led people to Christ on its own. I hope that this blog will through the stories behind these old and popular hymns help us to draw closer to Christ. As we see the experience of these writers we will appreciate more these hymns. I am a believer in simple and not complicated Christian music. I prefer music that focuses on the message rather than the instruments used. I am not a fan of drowning the voice in the noise of the instruments. I want the people to hear the message of the songs. Christian music for me is not about entertainment b

On Christ The Solid Rock I Stand (My Hope Is Built On Nothing Less) Lyrics and Story

My Hope Is Built On Nothing Else / On Christ The Solid Rock I Stand History My Hope Is Built on Nothing Less or On Christ The Solid Rock I Stand is the best-known hymn of Edward Mote who wrote it in 1834. The original title of this hymn was, "The Immutable Basis for a Sinner's Hope". Edward Mote was the pastor of Rehoboth Baptist Church in Horsham West Sussex in the United Kingdom. It looks as if the inspiration for this hymn came from Christ parable of the wise and foolish builders. In the parable, Christ speaks of the foolish builder who built his house on sinking sand while the wise builder built his on solid rock. As you would imagine a storm easily swept away the one built on sand. Edward Mote - On Christ the Solid Rock Christ is the solid rock upon which we can build our house of faith. Any other foundation is like one on sand and will ultimately fail. On the authorship of this song Mr. Mote's explanation, communicated to the Gospel Herald, is