Mrs. S. A. Collins



The Fate of the Maine

by Mrs. S. A. Collins 


Our good ship Maine at anchor lay,

      In the harbor of Havana.

She was equipped with arms and men,

      And o'er her was our banner.

The day has passed with naught to mar

      The peaceful attitude,

In which she there had entered port,

      With purpose firm and good.

She had been greeted, kindly too,

-By Spaniards at the port.

Her crew were men of iron will,

      But trouble did not court.

The sun had sank far in the West:

      The hours went swiftly by;

And moon and stars looked kindly out,

      As clouds went scudding by.

Some of the men to rest had gone,

      While others were on deck

To watch for signals, should there be

      A sign, a call, or beck.

But with no warning, came a sound,

      As of a mighty gun.

The vessel groaned, then downward sank,

      The fearful work was done.

Hundreds of our stalwart men,

      Our nation's seamen brave,

Met death when the Maine went down,

      And found a watery grave.

What caused this sad disaster?

      A court of inquiry

Are busy taking evidence,

      To solve the mystery.

And divers, working night and day,

      Removing from the sea

The bodies of our naval dead,

      And wreckage, what there be,

Have already drawn conclusions,

      As to why this deed was done,

And every loyal citizen,

      With hearts that beat as one.

Are waiting for the verdict,

The decision of the court,

Why an explosion should occur,

While in Havana 's port.

For many years in Cuba,

      A cruel war has waged;

The one side seeking freedom,

      The other, cruelly enraged,

Because the independence

      Of Cuba has been sought;

And the plucky insurgents

      Have many battles fought.

When with McKinley's message,

      Came an advice to Spain

To better times in Cuba,

      (This advice has been in vain.)

Or U. S. as a nation

      Would also take a hand,

And aid the Cuban's in their efforts

      To gain freedom in their land.

A hatred seemed to sprout and grow,

      In that-fairland of Spain,

Until remarks as to its growth,

      Were heard time and time again.

And when the Maine met such a fate,

      Surmises were not few,

That someone with a motive

      Had destroyed the ship and crew.

But if perchance the jury find

      An accident the cause,

Our nation has enough to do

      To enforce her laws.

But if some other means is found

      And proven without doubt,

The result no doubt will then be war:

      How recompense, without?

Many States in this great Nation

      Have already made report

To Washington , of volunteers,

      Who will help to "hold the fort."