Au­gust 28, 1840, Ed­in­burg, Penn­syl­van­ia.

Aug­ust 13, 1908, Brook­lyn, New York.

Green-Wood Ce­me­te­ry, Brook­lyn, New York.


Ira was the son of Da­vid Ira San­key and Ma­ry Lee­per, hus­band of Fran­ces Vic­tor­ia Ed­wards, and father of Ira A. San­key.

As a young man, he served in the Ame­ri­can ci­vil war. He of­ten helped the un­it chap­lain and led his fel­low sol­diers in hymn sing­ing.

After the war, he joined the In­ter­nal Rev­e­nue Ser­vice, and al­so worked with the Young Men’s Chris­tian As­so­ci­a­tion (YMCA). He be­came well known as a Gos­pel sing­er, and event­u­al­ly came to the at­ten­tion of evan­gel­ist Dwight Ly­man Moody.

The two men met at a YMCA con­ven­tion in In­di­an­a­po­lis, In­di­a­na, in June, 1870. Some months later, San­key at­tend­ed his first evan­gel­is­tic meet­ing with Moo­dy, and re­signed from gov­er­nment ser­vice short­ly there­af­ter.

In Oc­tober 1871, San­key and Moo­dy were in the mid­dle of a re­viv­al meet­ing when the Great Chi­ca­go Fire be­gan. The two men bare­ly es­caped the con­fla­gra­tion with their lives. San­key end­ed up watch­ing the ci­ty burn from a row­boat on Lake Mi­chi­gan.

Sankey com­posed about 1,200 songs in his life­time. He was blind from glau­co­ma the last five years of his life, and no doubt found a kin­dred spir­it in his blind friend and mu­sic mak­ing partner Fan­ny Cros­by. His works in­clude:

  1. For Me! For Me!
  2. King Is Com­ing, The
  3. O Christian Youth, Arise!
  4. Out of the Shadow-Land
  1. Aachen
  2. Able to De­liv­er
  3. Adana
  4. Algarve
  5. Army of En­dea­vor
  6. Awake and Watch
  7. Azariah
  8. Barbuda
  9. Be Ye Strong in the Lord
  10. Behold the Won­drous Love
  11. Believe and Obey
  12. Bermuda
  13. Blessèd Re­deem­er
  14. Bountiful Har­vest
  15. Bring in the Child­ren
  16. Buenos Aires
  17. C’est En­core Temps
  18. Christian’s Good Night, The
  19. Cleansing Foun­tain, The
  20. Clephane
  21. Come Home, My Child
  22. Come, Oh Come, with Thy Brok­en Heart
  23. Come, Prod­i­gal, Come
  24. Crewdson
  25. Daniel
  26. Denpasar
  27. Descend, O Flame
  28. Douglas
  29. Eindhoven
  30. Esrom
  31. Faith Is the Vic­to­ry
  32. Fisherman’s Wharf
  33. Fort Col­lins
  34. Gather in the Sheaves
  35. Grace, ’Tis a Charm­ing Sound
  36. Grand Is the Song
  37. Grasmere
  38. Graz
  39. Great Je­ho­vah, Mighty Lord
  40. Habana
  41. Hanoi
  42. Handwriting on the Wall, The
  43. Harbor Bell, The
  44. Have You Sought?
  45. He Is Com­ing
  46. He Who Safe­ly Keep­eth
  47. Hear Us, O Sav­ior!
  48. Help Me
  49. Houston
  50. How Can I Keep from Sing­ing?
  51. I Am Pray­ing for You
  52. I Am Re­deemed
  53. I Know He Is Mine
  54. It Is Fi­nished!
  55. It Pas­seth Know­ledge
  56. Jesse
  57. Jesus, I Will Trust Thee
  58. Kathmandu
  59. Kawasaki
  60. Kilauea
  61. King Is Comi­ng, The
  62. Lattimore
  63. Lecce
  64. Let the Bless­èd Sav­ior In
  65. Let Us Walk in the Light
  66. Light After Dark­ness
  67. Little Steps
  68. Little While, A
  69. Łódź
  70. Lord Is King!, The
  71. Los Pad­res
  72. Lucca
  73. Mace
  74. Malé
  75. Marlborough
  76. Marley
  77. Matagorda
  78. Minas Ger­ais
  79. Mirjana
  80. Model Church, The
  81. Morelos
  82. Mountain
  83. My Ship Is Com­ing In
  84. Never Say Good­bye
  85. Ninety and Nine, The
  86. Not Far from the King­dom
  87. Not Now, My Child
  88. O Bless­èd Be the Lord
  89. O Bro­ther, Life’s Jour­ney Be­gin­ning
  90. O Beau­ti­ful Sea
  91. O Be­lieve Him
  92. O Child of God
  93. O Serve the Lord
  94. O Songs of the Beau­ti­ful
  95. O, What a Sav­ior
  96. O Zion! Love­ly Zi­on!
  97. Oaxaca
  98. O’er Land and Sea
  99. Only Re­mem­bered
  100. Only to Know
  101. Onward, Sol­diers
  102. Onward Will We Go
  103. Onward, Up­ward
  104. Ostrava
  105. Over the Beau­ti­ful Ri­ver
  106. Precious Bless­ings
  107. Precious Words
  108. Resurrection Morn
  109. Samsun
  110. San Mar­cos
  111. San Ma­teo
  112. Sankey
  113. Send the Gos­pel Light
  114. Send Us Show­ers of Bless­ing
  115. Seward
  116. Shadow of the Rock, The
  117. Shelter in the Time of Storm, A
  118. Sheppard
  119. Shine On, O Star!
  120. Shipton
  121. Simeon
  122. Soldier of the Cross, A
  123. Song of Hea­ven and Home­land, A
  124. Sonoma
  125. Stacy
  126. Staffordshire
  127. Steiner
  128. Story Must Be Told, The
  129. Story That Ne­ver Grows Old, The
  130. Substitution
  131. Take Me as I Am
  132. Tarragona
  133. Tell It Out
  134. There Are Lone­ly Hearts to Cher­ish
  135. There Is a Par­a­dise of Rest
  136. There’ll Be No Dark Val­ley
  137. They That Be Wise
  138. This Is Our En­dea­vor
  139. Through the Val­ley and the Sha­dow
  140. Thy Hand Up­hold­eth Me
  141. Tirana
  142. To Arms! To Arms! Ye Sol­diers!
  143. To Be There
  144. Topeka
  145. Trim Thy Lamp
  146. Trust
  147. Trusting Je­sus
  148. Under His Wings
  149. Valdez
  150. Vallejo
  151. Victory Is Won
  152. Waiting for Thy Com­ing
  153. We Will Fol­low Thee
  154. Welcome! Wan­der­er, Wel­come!
  155. What a Ga­ther­ing
  156. When My Wea­ry Hands Are Fold­ed
  157. When the King Shall Come!
  158. When the Mists Have Rolled Away
  159. Where the Sav­ior Leads
  160. Whoever Will, Who­ev­er Will
  161. Whosoever Shall Call
  162. Wonderful Word
  163. Yet There Is Room
Great Chi­ca­go Fire, 1871