In Honor Of Our Country – And Her Flag!

Today, June 14, is Flag Day.  In her honor, a bit of music and a bit of history.

On September 14 it will be 203 years since the Battle of Baltimore, and the siege on Ft. McHenry.  At the famous battle, Francis Scott Key wrote the words that would become our National Anthem, The Star Spangled Banner.

Star Spangled Banner

An American lawyer and poet, Francis Scott Key, was on a mercy mission for the release of Dr. William Beanes, a prisoner of the British. Key showed the British letters from wounded British officers praising the care they received from Dr. Beanes. The British agreed to release Beanes, but Key and Beanes were forced to stay with the British until the attack on Baltimore was over. Key watched the proceedings from a truce ship in the Patapsco River. On the morning of the 14th, Key saw the American flag waving above Fort McHenry. Inspired, he began jotting down verses on the back of a letter he was carrying. When Key reached Baltimore, his poem, titled “Defence of Fort McHenry”. was printed on pamphlets by the Baltimore American.

His sloop alone  in the bay, Francis Scott Key looked fearfully towards the shoreline.  A breeze began to move across the water’s surface and the smoke of battle began to shift ever so slightly to reveal patches of blue sky.  And then, in the distant blue there appeared new colors….red and white….brief glimpses of the two-feet wide stripes of the Star Spangled Banner. 

fort-mchenry4

Then a star appeared in the daytime sky, then another….then fifteen stars in the daytime.  What a welcomed site they were.  Mr. Key’s heart swelled with hope, and pride in the men who had so valiantly fought through the night to keep that flag flying.  Reaching into his pocket he withdrew an envelope and began to write his thoughts:

Oh, say, can you see, by the dawn’s early light, What so proudly we hail’d at the twilight’s last gleaming?

Whose broad stripes and bright stars, thro’ the perilous fight,  O’er the ramparts we watch’d, were so gallantly streaming?

And the rockets’ red glare, the bombs bursting in air,  Gave proof thro’ the night that our flag was still there.

O say, does that star-spangled banner yet wave

O’er the land of the free and the home of the brave?

Ultimately, the British failed in capturing Baltimore.  The land attack failed and  Fort McHenry withstood the heavy British bombardment by sea.  The Battles of North Point and Baltimore had all but vanquished any hopes of British victory in the War of 1812.  With these battle victories, the War of 1812 had reached its turning point and  of victory over the British was imminent.

Fly your flag proudly today, and remember:

O, thus be it ever when freemen shall stand,
Between their lov’d homes and the war’s desolation;
Blest with vict’ry and peace, may the heav’n-rescued land
Praise the Pow’r that hath made and preserv’d us a nation!
Then conquer we must, when our cause it is just,
And this be our motto: “In God is our trust”
And the star-spangled banner in triumph shall wave
O’er the land of the free and the home of the brave!

 

NVeCisneBrancoMcHenry

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This entry was posted in History, Holidays, The Culture, Uncategorized. Bookmark the permalink.

12 Responses to In Honor Of Our Country – And Her Flag!

  1. Lucille says:

    48 Stars

    Prior to the adoption of the 48-star flag in 1912, there was no official arrangement of the stars in the canton, although the U.S. Army and U.S. Navy used standardized designs. Throughout the 19th century there was an abundance of different star patterns, rectangular and circular. (Wikipedia)


    (Artwork By Zimand – Own work, CC BY-SA 3.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=15253780)

    Liked by 3 people

  2. Contrary to what many believe this photo was not “staged”. This was however the 2nd raising of an American flag because the 1st flag raised was too small to be seen at a distance.

    God Bless our country, and make us worthy of it, and His Blessings. Amen.

    Liked by 3 people

  3. Boston Pops Bicentennial July 4th 1976 concert ending with the 1812 Orchestra with artillery – you can see the flashes over the water on the left.

    Liked by 2 people

  4. stella says:

    This Day in History: Happy Flag Day!

    http://www.taraross.com/2017/06/this-day-in-history-flag-day/

    Happy Flag Day! Did you know that today’s holiday would not exist but for the actions of a 19-year old schoolteacher from Wisconsin?

    In other words, anyone, anywhere can make a difference. 🙂

    In 1885, Bernard J. Cigrand was teaching in a one-room schoolhouse in Waubeka, Wisconsin. He’d devised a simple class exercise for his students: They were to write essays about the flag in commemoration of the flag’s birthday on June 14.

    Perhaps some of these essays mentioned the reason that June 14 is considered to be the flag’s birthday? It was on this day in 1777 that the Continental Congress first adopted a national flag for the newly declared American nation. Congress has made some changes since then, but the basic design of the flag remains the same: “thirteen stripes, alternate red and white” with a union of “thirteen stars, white in a blue field, representing a new constellation.”

    Surely Cigrand could not have imagined where this simple class exercise would take him! He would end up spending literally the rest of his life fighting for a national flag holiday.

    Like

  5. czarina33 says:

    I always mark this day on calendars I put up for my patients, but hardly anyone remembers it unless I tell them. I think it is important. It gets passed over in the education system because school is out by now, so probably only the Scouts & military have any ceremonies.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. I wore my 9-year old flag tee-shirt all day. I made a point to tell anyone who remarked upon the pristine condition of this shirt that it was Flag Day. And our Preezy’s birthday. I didn’t know it was also the US Army’s birthday, too. I’ll be sure to remember that next year.

    Liked by 1 person

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