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Onward and upward

Posted by Smokey Stover on June 11, 2006

In Reply to: Onward and upward posted by ESC on June 11, 2006

: : Does anyone know who coined the phrase "onward and upward" and when it first came in to use?

: ONWARD AND UPWARD - "We must continue to advance, to improve." "The Dictionary of Cliches" by James Rogers (Wings Books, Originally New York: Facts on File Publications, 1985) credits "The Present Crisis" by James Russell Lowell for this phrase.
: James Russell Lowell. 1819-1891
: 128. The Present Crisis
: .New occasions teach new duties; Time makes ancient good uncouth;
: They must upward still, and onward, who would keep abreast of Truth;
: Lo, before us gleam her camp-fires! we ourselves must Pilgrims be,
: Launch our Mayflower, and steer boldly through the desperate winter sea,
: Nor attempt the Future's portal with the Past's blood-rusted key.

: The whole poem is online at Accessed June 10, 2006.

As a boy growing up in New York State, I was told that the state motto, Excelsior, meant Onward and upward. It probably only means Upward, but I'm happy to think the other.
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