Stars in My Crown

Synopsis: Civil War veteran Josiah Grey comes to a small town to be a gospel minister. In time he has a family and many friends, but he also finds friction with a few of his parishioners. A young doctor grates at what he feels is the parson's interference in the scientific treatment of patients, and a mine owner resents Grey's protection of an old sharecropper whose small plot of land stands in the way of his continued mining. Grey must face a public health crisis and a lynch mob as a result, all seen and described through the eyes and memory of Grey's young nephew John.
Genre: Drama, Family, Western
Director(s): Jacques Tourneur
Production: Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer
89 min

# Will there be any stars,

any stars in my crown #

# When at evening the sun goeth down #

# When I wake with the blessed

in those mansions of rest #

# Will there be any stars in my crown? #

# I am thinking today

of that beautiful land #

# I shall reach when

the sun goeth down #

# When through wonderful

grace by my savior I stand #

# Will there be any stars in my crown? #

# Will there be any stars,

any stars in my crown #

# When at evening the sun goeth down #

# When I wake with the blessed

in those mansions of rest #

# Will there be any stars in my crown? #

# Oh, what joy it will be #

# When his face I behold... #

Hear that?

Might say I was raised on that song.

Hearing it takes me back...

back to the old times when I was young,

Back to Walesburg.

According to the words of the song,

We're promised a city

of gold in the hereafter.

I used to think that was a

long time to have to wait.

But I know now that

there is a city of gold

Right here on earth

for every one of us...

the city of our youth.

Walesburg's only one

name for it; that's all.

Walesburg not as it is

now, but as it used to be.

I just have to shut

my eyes, and I'm there.

Nothing's changed.

Even I haven't changed.

I'm always a boy in Walesburg.

And there at my side, just as he'll

always be, is the Parson... Parson gray.

And passing before me are all the people

who were a part of my growing up...

People like Mrs. Belcher,

who took in boarders,

And her niece faith Samuels,

the district schoolteacher.

Sweet, pretty miss Samuels.

Did you hear that, john?

Granny Gailbraith, who could remember

Seeing George Washington.

Thad Carroll, who had served as

drummer boy at the first bull run.

Lon Backett, who kept the general

store and had a finger in every pie.

Even chloroform Wiggins.

His ma had never heard of

chloroform until he was born,

And she thought it was

a mighty pretty name.

And all the others,

Walesburg people.

Gone now, most of them,

And yet as close to me still

as people in a favorite story...

a story that had its

beginning before I was born

On the day the Parson

arrived in our town.

Of course, this wasn't

much of a town then

In those first hard years

That followed the war

between the states,

But it suited the Parson

Right from the minute

he stepped off the train

And started to look around.

He must have attracted

plenty of attention

As he walked down main

street for the first time

In his brand-New black pulpit coat

And faded gray cavalry breeches

And his big old bible in his hand.

But he just kept on walking till

he got to jerry Higgins' saloon.

He didn't have to call for quiet.

It just followed him through

that room like a hound dog.

Boys, I'm your new preacher,

And I aim to give my first

sermon right here and now.


Now, seeing that this is as

new to me as it is to you...

I reckon we'd best

begin at the beginning.

"In the beginning was the word,

"And the word was with god.

And the word was god. "

From that day on,

Walesburg and the Parson

kind of grew up together.

He preached around in back rooms,

And he prayed in parlors,

And he led the singing in barns.

# Shall we gather at the river #

# Where bright angel feet have trod #

# With its crystal light forever #

# Flowing by the throne of god #

# Yes, we'll gather at the river #

# The beautiful, the beautiful river #

# Gather with the saints at the river #

# That flows by the throne of god #

And by the time work

started on the Parson's church,

His victory was won.

Just about everybody in Walesburg

took a hand in that church building.

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    "Stars in My Crown" STANDS4 LLC, 2021. Web. 14 Apr. 2021. <>.

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