One of the reasons we love to explore different holidays is best summed up by the unforgettable first line of our national anthem: “Oh, say can you see?”
You see, there are all kinds of interesting facts about this song that most of us don’t know. For example, how many of us knew that its author, Francis Scott Key, was an amateur poet? Raise your hand if you knew before reading this that he didn’t write the music.
We join you on this National Anthem Day in wondering what other surprises we might unfurl.
Seeing the American flag flying over Fort McHenry on September 14, 1814 inspired Key to pen “Defense of Fort McHenry”. The banner proudly soared in defiance of a terrible British bombardment, its stars and stripes celebrated the courage and determination of our American troops. It would be another year before the War of 1812 came to an end.
Key’s tribute caught national attention in less than a week. His brother-in-law, Joseph Nicholson, paired up Key’s poetry with a popular tune titled “The Anacreontic Song.” The work was published in newspapers along the Atlantic Seaboard. It was quickly picked up by the Thomas Car Music Store of Baltimore and sold under a new title, “The Star Spangled Banner.”
It took more than 100 years for our country’s anthem to legally become our country’s anthem. On March 3, 1931, Herbert Hoover gave us National Anthem Day by signing the Congressional bill that made it official.
So, now you see. Like so many holidays, this one gives us a chance to learn something new, smile at surprising facts about the day and look forward to the next celebration on our calendars. That’s what we love to do here at HolidayDispatch, and we thank you for being a part of it all.