Monday, March 26, 2012

My Heritage - Come Come Ye Saints

My great great grandfather, Alfred H. Harper, was part of a mass migration from Navoo Illinois in 1846. He was one of the first members of what most people know as the Mormon Church.. or as we call it, The Church of Latter Day Saint.
This video shows a depiction of that forced migration, after a hooded mob drove my people from Navoo. They had to cross the frozen Mississipi River in the dead of night. They traveled to the Salt Lake Valley where they settled.
A hundred miles west of Navoo, on April 15 1846, just 99 years before I was born, William Clayton wrote this as they were camped at Locust Creek Iowa. It's an amazing song to be written by someone who had just lost his home and his land.
My Great Great Grandfather Harper was a Wheelwright. He built a lot of the wagons that transported Mormon families across 1,300 miles (2,093 km).

Here are the lyrics to this amazing song.

Come, come, ye saints, no toil nor labor fear;
But with joy wend your way.
Though hard to you this journey may appear,
Grace shall be as your day.
Tis better far for us to strive
Our useless cares from us to drive;
Do this, and joy your hearts will swell -
All is well! All is well!

Why should we mourn or think our lot is hard?
'Tis not so; all is right.
Why should we think to earn a great reward
If we now shun the fight?
Gird up your loins; fresh courage take.
Our God will never us forsake;
And soon we'll have this tale to tell-
All is well! All is well!

We'll find the place which God for us prepared,
Far away, in the West,
Where none shall come to hurt or make afraid;
There the saints, will be blessed.
We'll make the air, with music ring,
Shout praises to our God and King;
Above the rest these words we'll tell -
All is well! All is well!

And should we die before our journey's through,
Happy day! All is well!
We then are free from toil and sorrow, too;
With the just we shall dwell!
But if our lives are spared again
To see the Saints their rest obtain,
Oh, how we'll make this chorus swell-
All is well! All is well!

No comments: