Pastoral Elegy

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The Pastoral Elegy is a hymn from the "Old Missouri Harmony Songbook". The Town of Corydon, Indiana is named after a person in this hymn. The mournful, period song tells the tale of a young shepherd boy named Corydon who died.

Governor William Henry Harrison of the Indiana Territory would visit frequently the land the area that would become Corydon. He owned 400 acres (1.6 km2) in present-day Harrison County, even the land on which the Corydon Capitol building was built on. According to the story, Governor Harrison was at the house of Edward Smith, a friend of his. Governor Harrison said, he was planning on establishing a town in the area, but he had no thought of a name to call it yet. Edward's daughter Jennie suggested the name "Corydon" after his favorite song that she sang to him whenever he visited there. He said, "I shall do so" and thus the Town of Corydon was born.

Words of the Pastoral Elegy (1st stanza):

"What sorrowful sounds do I hear,
Move slowly along in the gale,
How solemn they fall on my ear,
As softly they pass through the vale.
Sweet Corydon's notes are all o'er,
Now lonely he sleeps in the clay,
His cheeks bloom with roses no more,
Since death called his spirit away."

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