Jimi Hendrix & The Star Spangled Banner National Historic Trail
Star Spangled Banner Commemoration
232 years after the first signing of the Declaration of Independence by just 2 men, Senator Benjamin L. Cardin from Maryland and Representative Chris Van Hollen completed a partnership with the United States National Park Service and its efficient employees and supervisors in Prince George's County MD.
Together, they announced a Federal Grant for $100,000 to build and develop The Star-Spangled Banner National Historic Trail through Maryland.
The American National Anthem was not written when the New Nation first formed. It was not produced until the War of 1812, 36 years later when the British struck again.
The Federal Grant, first envisioned in 2003, allows The Star Spangled Banner to join the ranks of The Underground Railroad and others in their commemoration as America's greatest moments in history, as depicted and preserved by the National Park Service, conceived in the early 1900s.
Star-Spangled Banner National Historic Trail
Endpoints of Byways on the Trail
The Chesapeake Bay Campaign of the War Of 1812 - 1814
Not established until the year 2008 by the American Congress, the Star-Spangled Banner National Historic Trail opened as a 560- mile-long land route and waterway route. It connects national historic sites in Maryland, Virginia, and the District of Columbia (Washington DC).
This long historical trail takes travelers through many of the eventful places that payed parts in the War of 1812 - 1814, showcasing the natural landscape along the Chesapeake Bay.
Chesapeake Bay, Virginia, USA
A POW Wrote the Anthem
Our anthem, The Star Spangled Banner," is sung to the tune of a pub song To Anacreon in Heaven. it is surprising how many times that drinking songs are borrowed for other genres in the world of music and theater. In the past, many people has denigrated the American National Anthem as pathetic and low class because the melody came from a pub. Music is music, no matter its origins. it did not have to stay a drinking song and it's ahd many variations (see the Jimi Hendricks vid).
The anthem itself is from a poem written by Francis Scott Key, entitled Defense of Ft. McHenry in Maryland during the War of 1812. Key was a POW.
Mr. Key heard about England's strategy an attack on Baltimore MD. He was riding a British ship that was flying a truce flag at the time. Very duplicitous, indeed. it was all about attempting to compromise on the release of a Baltimore physician that had been held captive as a POW. Apparently, the Brits intended to keep Key captive.
With POWs in tow, the English waged war on Fort McHenry. They attacked all night, and the Americans withstood the onslaught without fail.
In the morning light, Key saw the US Flag still flying; the Brits had not shot it down. Filled with hop and probably pride, the poet wrote his verse about the flag that still stood. It was not chosen as a national anthem until 1916, under President Woodrow Wilson. It was not confirmed by US Congress until later, in 1931.
Thus is took 155 for America to choose a national anthem and about the same length of time to start a National Park Service and to begin commemorating important histories of the US and her diverse populations. Later still, the National Museum of the American Indian was not opened until 2005 - 229 years after the Declaration of Independence was first signed and about 500 years after Europeans first claimed native lands for themselves.
Learn more here: US History - Foundation Documents and Flags
Flag of the 3rd Maryland Regiment, 1777
The Star Spangled Banner
Path of the Trail
The long commemorative Trail moves through the towns of Calvert, Charles, St. Mary's and Prince George's counties in Maryland (all good places for seeking fast growing employment, by the way), Alexandria VA, Washington DC, and Baltimore MD, the site of Old Glory herself as she survived the battle.
The trail does not proceed up to the Great Lakes Region, where many additional major battles were held and American captives taken to England. It stays in the Bay area of Virginia. This trail will hopefully bolster local economies further, by drawing new tourist trade and many new businesses to spring up in the area. These venues will all need more workers of all ages.
The trail includes the sites of the Battle of St. Leonard's Creek, the Battle of Bladensburg, the Raid on Alexandria, and the Battle of Baltimore at Ft. McHenry.
The War of 1812 (- 1814) was the final battle, really of the American Revolution, the English not previously willing to accept defeat and the loss of the 13 Colonies. However, in 1814, they were finished, except for 1000s of American prisoners kept in Dartmoor Prison in England until 2015. The British had insisted upon drafting Americans into the Brtish Navy as well - and America had had enough, finally.
Other importan5t historic sites along the Trail include the Burning of Washington (DC). It is remembered that First Lady Dolley Madison saved the original US Constitution, the Declaration of Independence and a portrait of George Washington. She deserves her own commemoration for that.
A regional extravaganza began along the Trail sites and major cities in 2012, to last through at least 2014. It commemorated 200 years of final freedom from an old oppression.
American Flag History Links
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