The Star Spangled Banner and National Anthem

Short History of the Star Spangled Banner and National Anthem

In 1929, “House Resolution 14” was presented to Congress to name “The Star-Spangled Banner” as the official national anthem to the United States.

flag star spangled banner Capture

War of 1812 – Military Leadership

The Star-Spangled Banner (national anthem) was created by Francis Scott Key who witnessed and was inspired by the Battle of Fort McHenry  (Sept 13, 1814). Ft. McHenry was the  last line of defense for Baltimore:  if the fort was captured, then Baltimore would be as well.  With Washington, D.C., burned just a month prior, the capture of Baltimore would mean that the just formed United States would lose two major coastal cities. These cities were financial and political strongholds, and, without them, Britain could claim victory for the entire war.

After a 24-hour bombardment by the British on Ft. McHenry, and a successful defense from  brirtish ground assaults on Baltimore, the Flag still stood. 

The Image: The presented flag from Ft. McHenry resting on an angle with protective lighting at the Smithsonian National Museum of American History in Washington D.C.

Complete version of “The Star-Spangled Banner” showing spelling and punctuation from Francis Scott Key’s manuscript in the Maryland Historical Society collection.

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