Category Archives: Lindsay, Vachel

‘The Wedding of the Rose and the Lotus’ (Vachel Lindsay)

Springfield poet Vachel Lindsay wrote The Wedding of the Rose and the Lotus in 1912 to recognize the importance of the Panama Canal, which connected the Atlantic and Pacific oceans. The rose signifies the West and the lotus the East. … Continue reading

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Women’s literary clubs

The literary club movement began early in the 19th century as a consequence of the Industrial Revolution. The first recorded occurrence was a lecture series started in Milbury, Mass., in 1826. By 1834, 3,000 groups had been organized to listen … Continue reading

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Sangamon County poets

For a time in the early 20th century, central Illinois was famed across the country as the home of important poets, writers who were inventing new forms of verse that spoke in the voices of a new age. If it … Continue reading

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Elizabeth Graham (First Citizen)

Elizabeth Graham (1892-1982), though a Springfield High School English teacher and department head for nearly 40 years, is best known for her unswerving dedication to the poetry and memory of Vachel Lindsay. Graham. born in Galena, attended a Lindsay recitation … Continue reading

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Maydie Spaulding Lee

Mary Thankful Spaulding Lee — known universally as “Maydie” — has been overshadowed in history by her dynamic brothers, Willis and Charles Spaulding. But some of those involved in Springfield’s early 1900s’ progressive movement, including poet Vachel Lindsay, suggested that … Continue reading

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‘Springfield Magical’ (Vachel Lindsay)

“City of my discontent” summarizes in a phrase Vachel Lindsay‘s conflicted relationship with his home town. The poem that includes that line, “Springfield Magical,” was contained in Lindsay’s collection “General William Booth Enters into Heaven, and other poems,” 1919. In … Continue reading

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‘Abraham Lincoln Walks at Midnight’ (Vachel Lindsay)

Vachel Lindsay‘s best-known poem, “Abraham Lincoln Walks at Midnight,” was included in his collection The Congo and Other Poems. The collection was published in 1914, and “Walks” is eerily prescient about the disaster World War I would become. Abraham Lincoln … Continue reading

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‘The Golden Book of Springfield’ (Vachel Lindsay)

The Golden Book of Springfield, Vachel Lindsay’s only novel, published in 1920, outlined Lindsay’s ethereal, mythopoetic expectations for the city of Springfield a century hence. (One of the few concrete predictions in Lindsay’s highly metaphorical view of the city’s future … Continue reading

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‘On the Building of Springfield’ (Vachel Lindsay)

Poet Vachel Lindsay was confounded — not to say obsessed — with his hometown of Springfield. Some of his best-known lines about the city are contained in his 1908 poem, “On the Building of Springfield.” LET not our town be … Continue reading

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Octavia Roberts (Corneau)

Octavia Roberts (1875-1972), was a Springfield-born journalist and writer. Her best-known work today is Lincoln in Illinois, a brief (160-page) reflection on Abraham Lincoln in New Salem and Springfield that was published in 1918. Roberts was for a time the … Continue reading

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