7 sacred songs in honor of Memorial Day

'Battle Hymn of the Republic'

Considered by many to be the anthem of the American Civil War, the "Battle Hymn of the Republic" was written by Julia Ward Howe in response to her seeing a review of Union troops.

"I awoke in the gray of the morning twilight; and as I lay waiting for the dawn, the long lines of the desired poem began to twine themselves in my mind," recalled Howe.

For the melody, Howe used a song called "John Brown's Body," a tune that was written in homage to the militant prewar abolitionist.

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