Thoughts of Hampton From Days Gone By
Edited by John M. Holman, Hampton History Volunteer
I stood on the bridge at midnight
As the hour was struck by the village clock,
And the moon rose over the town
Behind the dark shoe shop.
I saw old Hampton's bright reflection
In the waters under me.
Her history shining forth
From the surface of the sea.
And reaching far into the distance
I saw a list of her distinguished men.
Their lives were full of courage
As their words with truth had been.
My thoughts came down to later years
When Hampton was on the crest of the waves,
The good old times of Uri Lamprey
and of "Major Dave".
I thought of "Grandsir Hardin"
Again I saw his blest abode,
Close beside the old Academy
At the head of the "Landing Road".
And while those thoughts came rushing,
As do the things of early years,
I see the procession still passing
The bridge with wooden piers.
One with classic features I revere his memory now
Hampton's historian - Joseph Dow.
Another to unravel legal snarls,
We have him yet, our Lawyer Charles.
Again I thought of times in the old town hall,
People lived to respond to Hampton's call,
From Portsmouth Old Captain Marcy came;
His solid voice made the rafters hum.
Judge Robie with learned words,
From Hampton Falls close by;
And "Musicus", with jolly wit,
Was always there from Rye.
Those good old times at the Union House
The people enjoyed them then,
The days of Smith and Whittier,
and dear old "Uncle Ben".
But as I stand my reverie is broke,
In the distance, I see the shoe-shop's smoke,
I hear the buzz of machinery's wheel,
and everything new life seem to feel.
Old Atlantic's waves like gentle tears
Come dashing round that bridge so near
That bridge with wooden piers
The bridge of '92.
Fine mansions and lawns with easy sweep
Come down to where the waters meet.
In the distance far
Comes an object -- an electric car!
Happy faces are seen within
and clearly sounds the gong,
As it comes upon the bridge
The bridge nine hundred feet long.
And bathed in gentle morning light
The Isles of Shoals in easy sight.
As the car swiftly passes by
I read the words, "Hampton Beach and Rye".