dee_burris: (Default)
 photo fortbomb edit.jpg

...And the rockets' red glare,
The bombs bursting in air,
Gave proof through the night that our flag was still there.
Oh, say does that star-spangled banner yet wave?
O'er the land of the free
And the home of the brave...

Although we all know that the holiday we will celebrate Monday s the 240th anniversary of the Declaration of Independence - a statement declaring that the thirteen American colonies regarded themselves as a new nation - not everyone realizes how the Star Spangled Banner came to be, or that it was not written during the Revolutionary War.

As a matter of fact, Francis Scott Key didn't call it the Star Spangled Banner. His original title was Defence of Fort M'Henry.
It was during the War of 1812 that the verses that would become our national anthem were written.

Key was an influential lawyer who volunteered to negotiate with the British for the return of some American prisoners captured during the war, and being held on the the flagship of the British fleet on the Chesapeake Bay. He and some friends were permitted to board the ship and were successful in their efforts, but since they had learned of plans of the British fleet to attack Fort McHenry at Baltimore, they were allowed to re-board their own vessel, but under British guard.

It was under this close scrutiny that on the night of 13 September 1814, Key watched anxiously as the British fleet continued to shell Fort McHenry, and the Americans became slower and slower to return fire. At twilight, he could still see the 30 by 42 foot Stars and Stripes (one of two flags made the previous year by a woman named Mary Pickersgill), tattered but still flying over Fort McHenry. The shelling continued throughout the night.

By dawn, an eerie silenced descended. Through the smoke, fog and haze, Key and the other Americans looked for the flag. There was a break in the haze, and they could see it.

Our flag was still there... announcing the American victory.

Mary Pickersgill's original flag is preserved at the Smithsonian Institute.

The memory of our ancestors and other relatives who fought for our independence from England during the Revolutionary War, and then fought for it again during the War of 1812, is preserved in our hearts.

Revolutionary War
Joshua Bloomer Ashmore, Sr.
Stephen Bloomer Balch
Luke Chapin
Samuel Chapin
Thomas Hale
Jesse George Hoshal
Alexander Meek
James Meek
Samuel Meek
Nelson Edward Parrish
Elijah Rollins
Ichabod Rollins
Nathaniel Rollins
Jesse Williams

The War of 1812
John S T Callaway
John Ivie
Ephraim C Lemley, Sr.
Keys Meek
Abraham Lincoln Parrish
George Wharton
Jacob Wingfield

 photo d5694c39-f08d-45b0-bba1-9abbddb5d59f.jpg
Lest we forget...
dee_burris: (Default)
Following some of my favorite geneabloggers this morning, and ran across this entry at Life From The Roots.

I descend from the same Balches as Barbara - just a different wife.

So if we sat down and pondered it, I guess we probably would find that we are something like 24th cousins, 11 times removed...

But still, it IS a small world.

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Dee Burris Blakley

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