Oh, say! Can you see...

WalnutHill

La Plata, United States

Artist's Description

This is the 1812 US flag flying on Federal Hill, Baltimore, MD.
It was during the war of 1812 – - actually it was a battle that didn’t take place until 1814 — but after a night of heavy bombardment by the British Navy, Francis Scott Key saw the US flag still flying on Fort McHenry in the Baltimore Harbor. He was inspired to write “The Star Spangled Banner,” the US national anthem.

Here are the lyrics to the entire work. Most Americans barely know the first verse and only because we hear it at sporting events. Personally, the last verse is my favorite.

Oh, say can you see by the dawn’s early light
What so proudly we hailed at the twilight’s last gleaming?
Whose broad stripes and bright stars thru the perilous fight,
O’er the ramparts we watched were so gallantly streaming?
And the rocket’s 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?

On the shore, dimly seen through the mists of the deep,
Where the foe’s haughty host in dread silence reposes,
What is that which the breeze, o’er the towering steep,
As it fitfully blows, half conceals, half discloses?
Now it catches the gleam of the morning’s first beam,
In full glory reflected now shines in the stream:
‘Tis the star-spangled banner! Oh long may it wave
O’er the land of the free and the home of the brave!

And where is that band who so vauntingly swore
That the havoc of war and the battle’s confusion,
A home and a country should leave us no more!
Their blood has washed out their foul footsteps’ pollution.
No refuge could save the hireling and slave
From the terror of flight, or the gloom of the grave:
And the star-spangled banner in triumph doth wave
O’er the land of the free and the home of the brave!

Oh! thus be it ever, when freemen shall stand
Between their loved home and the war’s desolation!
Blest with victory and peace, may the heav’n rescued land
Praise the Power that hath made and preserved us a nation.
Then conquer we must, when our cause it is just,
And this be our motto: “In God is our trust.”
And the star-spangled banner in triumph shall wave
O’er the land of the free and the home of the brave!

Artwork Comments

  • Photography  by Mathilde
  • WalnutHill
  • Susie Peek
  • WalnutHill
  • peaky40
  • WalnutHill
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desktop tablet-landscape content-width tablet-portrait workstream-4-across phone-landscape phone-portrait

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