from Logansport Journal, Logansport, Indiana, 1902, April 20

Sousa's Music for Riley's Poem


INDIANAPOLIS, April 20—John Philip Sousa, the composer and musical director, has
written music for James Whitcomb Riley's poem, "The Messiah of Nations," and it will be
sung for the first time at the dedication of the Soldiers and Sailors' Monument in
Indianapolis, May 15.

It has leaked out that at the meeting of the executive committee on Monument dedication
in the Governor's office this week this feature of the dedication was discussed.

The song will be sung by a chorus of 150 male voices accompanied by brass instruments.

"The Messiah of Nations" was written by Mr. Riley last fall, not long after the
assassination of President McKinley. It is reported that Charles E. Wilson, the Governor's
private secretary, who is also secretary of the general committee on Monument dedication,
conceived the idea of having the poem set to music by Sousa.

The Messiah of Nations (1902, 1914) sheet music

words by James Whitcomb Riley, music by John Philip Sousa
In the need that bows us thus, America!
Shape a mighty song for us, America!
Song to whelm a hundred years'
Roar of wars and rain of tears
'Neath a world's triumphant cheers, America! America!

Lift the trumpet to thy mouth, America!
East and West and North and South, America!
Call us round the dazzling shrine
Of the starry old ensign,
Holier yet through blood of thine, America! America!

High o'er looking sea and land, America!
Trustfully with outheld hand, America!
Thou dost welcome all in quest
Of thy freedom, peace and rest,
Ev'ry exile is thy guest, America! America!

Thine a universal love, America!
Thine the cross and crown thereof, America!
Aid us, then, to sing thy worth:
God hath builded, from thy birth,
The first nation of the earth, America! America!

compositions by John Philip Sousa