The Star-Spangled Banner
On September 13, 1814, the lyrics to our national anthem were penned by Francis Scott Key. An American lawyer, author, and amateur poet from Georgetown and Washington, D.C., he was inspired by witnessing the sight of our flag, still waving at dawn, in the aftermath of British bombardment on Ft. McHenry.
Quickly published on September 21 1814, the lyrics were adapted to music and became known as the “The Star Spangled Banner.” More than a century later, the song was adopted as the American national anthem, first by Executive Order from President Woodrow Wilson in 1916 and later by Congressional resolution in 1931, to be signed by President Herbert Hoover.
Since its inception, there have been many poignant and patriotic renditions performed over the years, both nationwide and around the world.
In 2015, over 1,000 high-school choir students sang the U.S. national anthem during their Kentucky conference. They gathered on balconies in the lobby of their high-rise hotel as below an appreciative audience listened enthralled. The students repeat their touching performance each year.
Then there’s 96 year old WWII veteran, Pete DuPré, performing his stirring rendition to millions of admiring fans, during the Women’s soccer match in Harrison, NJ, on Memorial Day, 2019.
History of Independence Day
On July 8, 1776, the first public readings of the Declaration of Independence were held in Philadelphia’s Independence Square to the ringing of bells and band music. One year later, on July 4, 1777, Philadelphia marked Independence Day by adjourning Congress and celebrating with bonfires, bells, and fireworks.