Extraordinary Stories

Acting (1) Adoption (1) Adventure (744) Advertisement (3) Aging (3) Agriculture (36) Airplanes (3) Alphabet (4) Americana (67) Amish (16) Animals (26) Antiques (5) Architecture (20) Art (140) Art? (5) Arts and Crafts (66) Athletics (3) Automobiles (25) Awards (1) Banking (2) Barn raising (1) Baseball (62) Basketball (1) Beaches (83) Bed & Breakfast (1) Bee Keeping (4) Beer & Breweries (1) Birds (2) Birthdays (29) Bookbinding (3) Books (7) Boxing (1) Brother Steve (7) Buisiness (1) Business (2) Canals (1) Cancer (5) Candy (19) Caribbean Islands (2) Caribbean Villas (15) Chesapeake Bay (57) Children (15) Chocolate (1) Christmas (30) Church Adventures (106) Cigars (1) Circus (1) Civil Rights (2) Civil War (3) Classic Cars (5) Coin club (1) Collections (65) Comedy (2) Comic Books (1) Commercials (1) Comnservation (2) Conservation (32) Craftsmanship (8) Creamsicle the Cat (11) Crime (8) Crisis (266) Cruise Travel (6) Danger (10) Daughter Brynn (50) Daughter-In-Law Barb (7) Death (3) Death and Dying (29) Downsizing (2) Dunking (2) Education (29) Energy (11) Entertainment (152) Entrepreneurial (59) Eternal Life (2) Facebook (4) Factories (1) Fads (6) Family (240) Farming (22) Father (40) Father Time (65) Favorites (46) Firefighting (1) Flora and Fauna (24) Fond Memories (444) Food and Cooking (141) Food and Drink (72) Football (4) Forgetfullness (2) Former Students (4) Framing (10) Friends (308) Fun (1) Fundraiser (6) Giving (4) Golf (3) Grandkids (120) Grandparents (2) Grandview Heights (27) Great service (2) Growing Old (3) Growing Up (172) Handwriting (3) Hat Making (2) Hawaii (45) Health and Well Being (11) Health Hazards (73) Heartbreak (4) Heroes (9) High School (124) History (495) Hockey (1) Holidays (106) Home construction (7) Horses (1) Humorous (67) Ice Cream (3) Inventions (27) Islands (2) Italy (12) Jewelry (3) Job Related (60) Just Bloggin' (53) Just Wondering (10) Juvenile Diabetes (5) Labor (3) Lancaster County (378) Law Breakers (2) LDubs In-Laws (3) Life's Lessons (151) Lists (68) Lititz (13) Love (3) Magic (1) Marching (1) Market (3) Medical (129) Memories (1) Middle School (1) Mother (49) Movies (2) Music (87) My Brother (15) My Wife (254) Neighbors (5) New Year's Day (2) Nuisance (3) Obsolescence (4) Old Age (1) Pain and Suffering (6) Panama Canal Cruise (13) Parish Resource Center (14) Patriotism (1) Penmanship (1) Pets and Animals (94) Photography (193) Playing Trains (2) Politics (27) Postal Service (1) Presidents (6) Pride (3) Printing (64) Protesting (2) Public Service (60) Questionnaire (1) Race relations (2) Reading (1) Revolutionary War (1) Rock & Roll (1) Rodents (2) Sand (1) Scouting (2) Shakespeare (1) Shopping (19) Simple Pleasures (115) Slavery (3) Small Towns (3) Snow (1) Son Derek (26) Son Tad (29) Son-In-Law Dave (22) Soup (1) Sports (123) St. Martin/Sint Maarten (247) Stained Glass (1) Story-Telling (20) Stragers (1) Strangers (1) Stress (2) Stuff (2) Surfing (1) Tattoos (1) Teaching (42) Technology (75) The Arts (3) The Beach House (62) The Shore (78) This and That (15) Timekeeping (3) Tools and Machines (23) Toys and Games (30) Track & Field (1) Trains (10) Transportation (10) Travel (2) Trending (2) TV Favorites (16) Underground Railroad (3) USA (1) Vacation and Travel (522) Vehicles (79) War (6) Watches and Watchmaking (4) Weather (47) Weddings (1) Wisdom (3) Yearbooks (4) York County (1)

Wednesday, August 20, 2014

The "O'er the land of the free!" Story

A post card displaying the monument of Francis Scott Key.
It was an ordinary day.  My grand- daughter, Camille, and I are standing in front of the monument which features the statute of Francis Scott Key in the Mount Olivet Cemetery in Frederick, MD.  The American lawyer, author and amateur poet was born in the nearby family plantation called Terra Rubra.  
My photo of the monument.
Pretty impressive statue that stands close to thirty feet tall directly inside the gate of the cemetery.  Camille and I had plans to walk some of the nearby Civil War Battlefields and take photos; me for my blog and her for a class project that she will have at the end of this coming school year.  But before that assignment, we stopped at the cemetery to view Key's monument and the grave of Key's friend Barbara Fritchie who was a Civil War hero.  In this cemetery are also hundreds of those who were killed during the war of 1812.  This year we will celebrate the 200th anniversary of our National Anthem in Baltimore where Francis Scott Key wrote the lyrics to "The Star-Spangled Banner."  
Francis Scott Key
It was on the evening of September 13, 1814 that Key had a front row seat aboard a British Naval vessel as it bombarded Fort McHenry in the harbor to the south of Baltimore in the Chesapeake Bay.  He was being held hostage along with Colonel John Skinner who had come aboard the British warship to help negotiate the release of Dr. William Beanes who had been taken prisoner when the British captured and burned Washington, D.C.  As dawn arrived an over-sized American Flag was hoisted above the walls of the fort and the British left in defeat.  
Artist's idea of what Key saw when he witnessed
the flag raised at Fort McHenry in Baltimore.
On his way back to Baltimore during his release, he was inspired to begin a poem describing his experience which he titled "Defence of Fort M'Henry".  The following day he finished his work while staying at a nearby inn.  The poem was later set to the tune called "To Anacreon in Heaven," an English drinking song.  It wasn't until March 3, 1931, that President Herbert Hoover, along with Congress, had the song declared the U.S. National Anthem.  The original manuscript that Key finished at the inn on September 14, 1814 is now part of the Maryland Historical Society with a copy of it in the Library of Congress.  
The day after he wrote his poem, it was printed and sung
throughout the city of Baltimore. This is a copy of a
piece of sheet music that featured our National Anthem.
In 1843 Francis (Frank to his friends) Scott Key died at the home of his daughter in Baltimore from pleurisy.  He initially was interred in Old Saint Paul's Cemetery, Baltimore, MD, but in 1866 his body was moved to his family plot at the Mount Olivet Cemetery in his home-town of Frederick.  As Camille and I stand in front of his monument that displays the sculpture of him, it is hard to realize what this brave and patriotic citizen did that made it possible for the two of us to be standing where we were today.  It was another extraordinary day in the life of an ordinary guy.
  

No comments:

Post a Comment