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Poems by LLS - Heritage Lost

Updated on September 8, 2014

Written by Laura L. Scotty (10/1992)

Colonial Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania
Colonial Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania | Source

Where the Allegheny and Monongahela meet the Ohio

sounds of my forefathers were heard long ago.

Along the shores were great-grandma's gardens fair

Now a fountain gushes water high into the air.

My ancestors have long since passed on like trains;

but Point Park to me their final tribute remains.

Indians, French and British all claimed this land.

Forts were fought for in battles large and grand.

General O'Hara for his deeds was given a grant to property

and the Block House was later donated to posterity.

We were the lessors but whom were the landowners I question.

all that remain are memories of an uncle's notations.

On the Allegheny was kept lumber for building slips.

On the Monongahela my great-great Grandfather built ships.

The Ohio in the middle was the mightiest of them all.

Between the two shores three houses stood lone and tall.

All that remains of the past is the land far from young.

but tales linger passed down more than a century by tongue.

Great-Grandma baked bread and buns during the Civil War,

in her earthen oven on the Monongahela shore.

Soldiers returning home, tired and ill fed

traded their muskets for her fresh baked bread.

Now these rifles are trophys symbolizing valor.

mounted on a game room wall in a place of honor.

View of Pittsburgh, PA in 1877
View of Pittsburgh, PA in 1877 | Source

I oft wonder how this land became a public park

instead of being passed down, I'm completely in the dark.

Notes refer to a ninety-nine year lease on the tract

and lists 1845 as the earliest date of fact.

My grandma married at the turn of the century.

She and her two brothers leaving to find their destiny.

On St. Patrick's Day in '36 came the great flood

and from shore to shore the grounds were covered with crud.

All my relatives had long since gone away.

After the devastation, who would want the forgotten quay.

apparently no kin of mine could see this land's worth.

The charter came due in '44, the year of my birth.

Now the park serves as a symbol of my heritage lost.

The park dotted with bridges all to be crossed.

As I visit my grandmother's birthplace.

Markers of the original shoreline are there to trace.

Immitations of boats my ancestors built line one shore.

My roots shared gives pleasure to all forevermore.


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    9 years ago

    Beautiful poem and so rich in history as well..thank you for sharing such a lovely piece!


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