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Stedman and Hutchinson, comps. A Library of American Literature:
An Anthology in Eleven Volumes. 1891.
Vols. IX–XI: Literature of the Republic, Part IV., 1861–1889


By Charles Fenno Hoffman (1806–1884)

[Born in New York, N. Y., 1806. Died at Harrisburg, Penn., 1884. From Poems. Collective Edition. 1873.]

WE were not many—we who stood

Before the iron sleet that day—

Yet many a gallant spirit would

Give half his years if he then could

Have been with us at Monterey.

Now here, now there, the shot, it hailed

In deadly drifts of fiery spray,

Yet not a single soldier quailed

When wounded comrades round them wailed

Their dying shout at Monterey.

And on—still on our column kept

Through walls of flame its withering way;

Where fell the dead, the living stept,

Still charging on the guns which swept

The slippery streets of Monterey.

The foe himself recoiled aghast,

When, striking where he strongest lay,

We swooped his flanking batteries past,

And braving full their murderous blast,

Stormed home the towers of Monterey.

Our banners on those turrets wave,

And there our evening bugles play;

Where orange boughs above their grave

Keep green the memory of the brave

Who fought and fell at Monterey.

We are not many—we who pressed

Beside the brave who fell that day;

But who of us has not confessed

He’d rather share their warrior rest,

Than not have been at Monterey?