University Marching Band Suspends Playing Maryland State Song

Aug 29, 2017

Credit sheet music

COLLLEGE PARK, Md. (AP) - The University of Maryland marching band will at least temporarily stop playing the state's official song, which includes a reference to "Northern scum" and other pro-Confederate lyrics.

University spokeswoman Katie Lawson tells news media outlets that school officials are suspending the playing of "Maryland, My Maryland" to "evaluate if it is consistent with the values" of the school. The marching band played the song during football pregame shows.

"Maryland, My Maryland" was written in 1861 by James Ryder Randall, who was despondent about the death of a friend shot while protesting Union troops in Baltimore. It refers to President Abraham Lincoln as a "despot."

Drum major Brian Starace tells The Baltimore Sun he supports the move, saying the song was never something he was "too proud to be playing."

Maryland, My Maryland

I
The despot's heel is on thy shore,

Maryland!
His torch is at thy temple door,
Maryland!
Avenge the patriotic gore
That flecked the streets of Baltimore,
And be the battle queen of yore,
Maryland! My Maryland!

II
Hark to an exiled son's appeal,

Maryland!
My Mother State! to thee I kneel,
Maryland!
For life or death, for woe or weal,
Thy peerless chivalry reveal,
And gird thy beauteous limbs with steel,
Maryland! My Maryland!

III
Thou wilt not cower in the dust,

Maryland!
Thy beaming sword shall never rust,
Maryland!
Remember Carroll's sacred trust,
Remember Howard's warlike thrust,-
And all thy slumberers with the just,
Maryland! My Maryland!

IV
Come! 'tis the red dawn of the day,

Maryland!
Come with thy panoplied array,
Maryland!
With Ringgold's spirit for the fray,
With Watson's blood at Monterey,
With fearless Lowe and dashing May,
Maryland! My Maryland!

V
Come! for thy shield is bright and strong,

Maryland!
Come! for thy dalliance does thee wrong,
Maryland!
Come to thine own anointed throng,
Stalking with Liberty along,
And sing thy dauntless slogan song,
Maryland! My Maryland!

VI
Dear Mother! burst the tyrant's chain,

Maryland!
Virginia should not call in vain,
Maryland!
She meets her sisters on the plain-
Sic semper! 'tis the proud refrain
That baffles minions back amain,
Maryland!
Arise in majesty again,
Maryland! My Maryland!

VII
I see the blush upon thy cheek,

Maryland!
For thou wast ever bravely meek,
Maryland!
But lo! there surges forth a shriek,
From hill to hill, from creek to creek,
Potomac calls to Chesapeake,
Maryland! My Maryland!

VIII
Thou wilt not yield the Vandal toll,

Maryland!
Thou wilt not crook to his control,
Maryland!
Better the fire upon thee roll, Better the shot, the blade, the bowl,
Than crucifixion of the Soul,
Maryland! My Maryland!

IX
I hear the distant thunder-hum,

Maryland!
The Old Line bugle, fife, and drum,
Maryland!
She is not dead, nor deaf, nor dumb-
Huzza! She spurns the Northern scum!
She breathes! She burns! She'll come! She'll come!
Maryland! My Maryland!