“Our Town”

Kendallville, Indiana. From the collection of Michael Mapes

Could I but turn the hands of Time
Back to my boyhood days sublime;
I’d thrill, once more, to stories told
By bearded men of days of old.
They were the ones who knew the truth
Of Kendallville, back in my youth.

This must have been a lovely place
When wagons rolled along the trace,
White-topped wagons…oxen drawn
Through forest gloom into the dawn
Of an era, when from toil and strife,
Emerged the Hoosier way of life.

Here, in this spot, so old, yet new,
Our town was born. It thrived, and grew,
The winding trace became a street
As wagon wheels and booted feet
Erased the time-worn Indian trail
That hadn’t known a plank or rail.

More settlers came and settled down,
Then Kendallville became a town.
Unbroken forests, lakes, and streams,
This was the place where hopes and dreams
Soon rooted deep in Hoosier soil
As hearts and hands were pledged to toil.

One hundred years! Our town has changed.
One hundred years have rearranged
The forest aisles to busy streets.
Ours is a heritage that greets
The coming years with faith and pride.
To all…her doors have opened wide.

As we look back to yesterday
Let’s ask ourselves, perhaps this way,
“Could there yet be a spot on earth
More dearer than one’s place of birth?”
This town of ours will always be
Loved by you…and loved by me.

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