Hold Back the Waters
(Words by Will McLean;Music by Will McLean and Dash Moore)
Lord, hold back the waters of Lake Okeechobee,
for Lake Okeechobee's blue waters are cold.
When wild winds are blowin' 'cross Lake Okeechobee
they're calling and seeking for other poor souls.
Oh Lake O-keechobee's blue waters are cold.
The Seminole left there in haste and with speed.
Their wise words of warning were given no heed.
When the waters receded, Great God what a sight!
Men, women and children turned black as the night.
Now Lake Okeechobee is calm and serene.
The land all around is fertile and green.
But the people get fearful when the wild winds do roam.
They look at the earth dam and they think of their home.
"Lake Okeechobee, in south central Florida, just north of the
Everglades, is the second-largest fresh water lake wholly within the
United States. It covers 750 square miles. Between September 12th to
the 17th of 1928, a hurricane sweeping out of the West Indies
virtually lifted the waters from the lake bed and sent them swirling
down on the countryside. Four thousand people were drowned."
"The Night 2000 Died:" 9/16/1928. Actual total may have been from 1,800
to 3,000 dead over the 5 days. Third highest loss of life in the US
caused by a single event. The immediate cause was the destruction of
the earthenwork dam designed to hold back the waters. It's not much
improved today over the 1920's model. AJS