We all know the story. Francis Scott Key, a young lawyer from Georgetown, witnessed the bombardment of Fort McHenry, which lasted for twenty-five hours, from September 13 to September 14, 1814, during the Battle of Baltimore in the War of 1812. At first light, after the cannon fire had finally ceased, the sight of the flag known as the "Star-Spangled Banner" still flying over the fort inspired Key to write a poem called "Defence of Fort McHenry," which became the lyrics for our national anthem.
A stirring and significant moment in American history. The successful defense of Baltimore marked the turning point in the war. Fort McHenry should be a national historic shrine, and indeed it is, but here's the view from Fort McHenry today.
Photograph contributed by a Gossips reader.