How Great Thou Art
Carl Boberg, a 26 year old Swedish minister, wrote a poem in 1885 which he called “O Store Gud” - “O Mighty God.” The words, literally translated to English, said:
When I the world consider
Which Thou has made by Thine almighty Word
And how the webb of life Thou wisdom guideth
And all creation feedeth at Thy board.
Then doth my soul burst forth in song of praise
Oh, great God, Oh, great God!
His poem was published and “forgotten” - or so he thought. Several years later, Carl was surprised to hear it being sung to the tune of an old Swedish melody; but the poem and hymn did not achieve widespread fame.
Hearing this hymn in Russia, English missionary, Stuart Hine, was so moved he modified and expanded the words and made his own arrangement of the Swedish melody. Some time later, Dr. J. Edwin Orr heard “How Great Thou Art” being sung by Naga Tribes people in Assam, in India and decided to bring it back to America for use in his own meetings. When he introduced it at a conference in California, it came to the attention of music publisher, Tim Spencer, who contacted Mr. Hine and had the song copyrighted. It was published and recorded.