Monday, August 31, 2009


The following poem entitled
"Cranberry" was originally published in the mid-19th century, and reflects a time when commercial cranberrying was in its infancy. As hinted at in the poem, children were involved in harvesting the berry and some local schools like that at South Middleborough were closed in September in order to free the children to work on the bogs or, as they were known in mid-19th century parlance, "swamps".

In Autumn, when weather is cool,
We'll join in a holiday romp;
Away from the school we will hie,
Away to the Cranberry swamp.

The Strawberry, Raspberry too,
And Blackberry, quickly gone;
The Blueberry cannot endure
When frost and the snow come on.

But Cranberries where they are grown,
Or put into family store,
Care nothing how cold it may be,
And last till the winter is o'er.

They last till the Strawberries spring
All lonely and ripe from the sod,
And berries thus circle the year
With proofs of the goodness of God.

Poem from untitled newspaper clipping, mid-19th century.

"Cranberry Harvest on Nantucket, MA", Rene S., photographer. October 6, 2007. Republished under a Creative Commons license. Some rights reserved.


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