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The origin of our national anthem was set against the  Indian leader Tecumseh was killed at the Battle of the
     backdrop of an event from the War of 1812. The last line  Thames in Canada.
     of defense for the city of Baltimore, after the burning
     and ransacking of our national capital by the British, was   In August 1814, English ships sailed up the Chesapeake
     Fort McHenry.                                              Bay and invaded Washington, D.C. American forces were
                                                                thrown back, President Madison and most everyone else
      The United States was drawn into the war after a period  ƪ ‡†  –Š‡  …‹–›ǡ  ƒ†  –Š‡   ‰Ž‹•Š  „—”‡†  –Š‡   ”‡•‹†‡–‹ƒŽ
     ‘ˆ ‡—–”ƒŽ‹–›Ǥ  –ƒ”–‹‰ ‹ ͙͛͘͠ǡ ƒ •‡”‹‡• ‘ˆ ™ƒ”• …ƒŽŽ‡† –Š‡  Mansion and the Capital Building. The English then
     Napoleonic Wars broke out in Europe. The war involved  sailed to Baltimore with the intention of taking that city.
     most of the European countries and would last through  The only thing preventing this from occurring was the
     ͙͙͠͝Ǥ  —”‹‰ –Š‡  ‡ơ ‡”•‘ ƒ† ‘•– ‘ˆ –Š‡  ƒ†‹•‘  American Fort McHenry.
     administrations, the United States was able to maintain
     a position of neutrality, but that unraveled as three       Francis Scott Key was born to well-to-do parents
     international issues with England unfolded. First, England  in Frederick County, Maryland. He became a lawyer
     „Ž‘…ƒ†‡† –Š‡  ‡”‹…ƒ …‘‡”…‹ƒŽ ƪ ‡‡–  ’”‡˜‡–‹‰  and moved to Washington, D. C., where he had a very
     free trade with Europe. Second, English warships  successful law practice. He was appointed district
     engaged in the impressment of American sailors.  attorney for Washington, D.C., and argued many cases
     (English warships would stop American commercial  before the Supreme Court. Because of his prominence
     vessels, illegally board them, and forcibly seize sailors  and legal skills, he was later involved in several historical
     that they suspected might have been English sailors who  trials, including the defense of accused traitor Aaron
     Šƒ† Œ—’‡† •Š‹’ǤȌ  ƒ•–Ž›ǡ –Š‡  ”‹–‹•Š Š‡Ž’‡† ƒ” ƒ†   —”” ƒ† –Š‡ ’”‘•‡…—–‹‘ ‘ˆ  ‹…Šƒ”†  ƒ™”‡…‡ ˆ‘” Š‹•
     incite Indians against the migrations of Americans west  attempted assassination of Andrew Jackson.
     of the Appalachian Mountains in violation of the treaty
     ‡†‹‰ –Š‡  ‡”‹…ƒ  ‡˜‘Ž—–‹‘Ǥ  ‹’Ž‘ƒ–‹… ‡ơ ‘”–• „›       Following the English capture of Washington DC, a
      ”‡•‹†‡–  ƒ†‹•‘ –‘ •–‘’ –Š‡•‡ ’”ƒ…–‹…‡• Ƥ ƒŽŽ› ‡†‡†  friend of Key, Dr. William Beane’s, was taken prisoner
     when he asked Congress for a declaration of war, which  aboard an English naval vessel. Key traveled to Baltimore
     was approved on June 18, 1812.                             to meet with the British Prisoner Exchange Agent to
                                                                negotiate Beane’s release. The meeting was held aboard
      England possessed the strongest navy in the world,  the prison ship where Beane was detained. Because
     and its army was battle-tested, having fought against  of the conversation that took place between Key and
     Napoleon and his allies. The Napoleonic War took a  –Š‡  ƒ––‡†‹‰   ‰Ž‹•Š  ‘ƥ  …‡”•ǡ Š‡ ™ƒ• ‘– ƒŽŽ‘™‡† –‘
     major turn in 1812 when Napoleon invaded Russia. The  go ashore lest he forewarn American forces of the
     bitter cold forced a retreat back to France in the dead  impending English attack on Fort McHenry. During the
     of winter and did what the Coalition Armies arrayed  ‹‰Š–  ‘ˆ   ‡’–‡„‡”  ͙͛Ǧ͙͜ǡ  ͙͙͜͠ǡ   ‡›  ™‹–‡••‡†  –Š‡
     against Napoleon couldn’t do. Destroy his army. The  English naval bombardment of Fort McHenry, the Battle
     war in Europe would continue, but by 1814 the English  of Baltimore, which consisted of 1800 rounds of cannon
     could then turn their attention and military force against  ƒ† ”‘…‡– Ƥ ”‡Ǥ
     the United States. The War of 1812 was fought in four
     †‹ơ ‡”‡–  –Š‡ƒ–‡”•  ‘ˆ  ™ƒ”Ǣ   ƒ˜ƒŽ  ˆ‘”…‡•  ‹  –Š‡   –Žƒ–‹…    – †ƒ™ǡ  ‡› ™ƒ• ƒ„Ž‡ –‘ •‡‡ –Š‡  ‡”‹…ƒ ƪ ƒ‰  •–‹ŽŽ
      …‡ƒǡ  ‘™‡”  ƒƒ†ƒ ‹ –Š‡ ƒ”‡ƒ ƒ”‘—†  —‡„‡… ƒ†  waving above the Fort. Pulling an envelope from his
      ‘–”‡ƒŽǡ –Š‡  ”‡ƒ–  ƒ‡• ”‡‰‹‘ǡ ƒ† –Š‡  —Žˆ  ‘ƒ•–Ǥ  pocket and using the rail of the ship as his desk, Key
     Unlike the Revolutionary War, the United States had  penned a poem of what he had witnessed and entitled it
     no allies to help face the military power of England.  “Defense of Fort McHenry.” His poem was soon published
     The United States would have to take on the English by  ƒ† –Š‡ •‡– –‘ —•‹…ǡ „—– „› ƒ †‹ơ ‡”‡–  ƒ‡ǡ  Dz Š‡
     themselves.                                                Star Spangled Banner.” At the time of its writing, the
                                                                 ‹–‡†  –ƒ–‡• †‹† ‘– Šƒ˜‡ ƒ ‘ƥ  …‹ƒŽ ƒ–‹‘ƒŽ ƒ–Š‡ǡ
      The issue of Indian uprisings was addressed prior to the  although “Hail Columbia” was used in a similar manner.
     ‘—–„”‡ƒ  ‘ˆ  –Š‡  ™ƒ”  ‹   ‘˜‡„‡”  ͙͙͙͠  ™Š‡   ‡‡”ƒŽ  By the time of the Mexican War in the late 1840s and
     William Henry Harrison defeated a coalition of Indians  then the Civil War, “The Star Spangled Banner” had been
     ƒ– –Š‡  ƒ––Ž‡ ‘ˆ  ‹’’‡…ƒ‘‡ ‡ƒ” ’”‡•‡–Ǧ†ƒ›  ƒˆƒ›‡––‡Ǥ  widely accepted. President Woodrow Wilson signed an
      Š”‡‡ †‹ơ ‡”‡–  ‡”‹…ƒ ‹˜ƒ•‹‘• ‘ˆ  ƒƒ†ƒ –‘‘ ’Žƒ…‡  executive order to adopt it as the national anthem in
     during the war with varying degrees of success. In April  ͙͙͡͞ǡ ƒ† ƒ  ‘‰”‡••‹‘ƒŽ  ”†‡” ‹ ͙͙͛͡ ƒ†‡ ‹– ‘ƥ  …‹ƒŽǤ
     ͙͙͛͠ǡ  Ǥ Ǥ –”‘‘’• …ƒ’–—”‡† –Š‡ …‹–› ‘ˆ  ‘”ǡ ’”‡•‡–Ǧ†ƒ›
      ‘”‘–‘ǡ ™Š‹…Š ™ƒ• „—”‡†Ǥ    ‡’–‡„‡” ͙͙͛͠ǡ  ƒ’–ƒ‹       Key returned to Washington, where he continued to
     Oliver Hazard Perry defeated English naval forces in the  practice law. Always well-connected both socially and
      ƒ––Ž‡ ‘ˆ  ƒ‡  ”‹‡Ǥ    …–‘„‡” ‘ˆ –Š‡ •ƒ‡ ›‡ƒ”ǡ –Š‡  politically, Key was well-liked by people of all political

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