On Sept. 13, 1814, during the War of 1812, Dr. Beanes had been arrested by the British Navy. Francis Scott Key (Frank), a young lawyer, set out to argue for his release. The British agreed, in light of how the doctor had administered the injured on both sides of the war. But on their return, the British ship began bombing Fort McHenry. How fortunate are we that a poet, Francis Scott Key, witnessed the attack of Fort McHenry, and after 25 hours of battle on that early dawn 200 years ago, like a true poet, took out whatever was availble to write upon--an old letter. and eloquently penned the glorious relief and patriotism that he felt when he saw the battered banner still waving over the land of the free and the home of the brave. God was surely with us that night as the rain drenched the reign of bombs from that mighty British ship. The flag, (see below) which was visible while the bombs were bursting in air, was replaced the next morning with the better flag, which was Later the poem was fit to a song, Defense of Fort McHenry, and more verses were added, The song ends by saying "may this be our motto, in God is our trust," later changed to "In God we trust," and titled "The Star Spangled Banner."
Now in the Smithosonian, the flag is missing a star; pieces were taken as souvenirs over the years.
"Mary Pickersgill, a hardworking widow known as one of the best flag makers in Baltimore, received a rush order from Maj. George Armistead. Newly installed as commander of Fort McHenry, the 33-year-old officer wanted an enormous banner, 30 by 42 feet, to be flown over the federal garrison guarding the entrance to Baltimore's waterfront." The huge flag, made with 300 yards of wool, had 2 foot-wide stripes. It also had 15 stripes and 15 stars. It cost the government $405.90 and the storm version that flew during the battle, cost $168.54. The morning after the battle the storm flag was replaced with the better flag.
Wynne Huddleston is a poet, musician and teacher. Her first book of poetry, From the Depths of Red Bluff, ISBN: 978-0-9840483-2-8, published by the Mississippi Poetry Society, Inc., is now available on Amazon and Barnes and Noble. Ms. Huddleston is the Mississippi Poetry Society 2014 Poet of the Year. Her poetry has been published in numerous publications including the Birmingham Arts Journal, Camroc Press Review, Stymie Magazine, Danse Macabre, Orange Room Review, New Fairy Tales Anthology, Ink, Sweat & Tears, and Four and Twenty. Her poem, Same Stars, Different Houses received a Pushcart Nomination from Deep South Magazine. Awards include the 2013 MPS Award, and Winner of the Grandmother Earth National Contest 2010 for Environmental Poetry. Ms. Huddleston was born in Lone Star, Texas, but has lived in Mississippi most of her life. She has been an elementary music teacher for 25 years, and has 2 grown sons, and 2 grandchildren. http://www.amazon.com/dp/0984048324/