Frances Scott Key
Then, in that hour of deliverance, my heart spoke. Does not such a country, and such defenders of their country, deserve a song?….”


 




 

Frances Scott Key
 (1779-1843)

September 13, 1814 of Fort McHenry the Star Spangle Banner Was Composed by Frances Scott Key, poet-lawyer and later became our National Anthem.
 

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THE NATIONAL ANTHEM OF THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA

Oh, say, can you see, by the dawn's early light,
What so proudly we hail'd at the twilight's last gleaming?
Whose broad stripes and bright stars, thro' the perilous fight,
O'er the ramparts we watch'd, were so gallantly streaming?
And the rockets' red glare, the bombs bursting in air,
Gave proof thro' the night that our flag was still there.
O 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 thro' 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 on the stream:
'T is the star-spangled banner: O, 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 wash'd 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.

O, thus be it ever when freemen shall stand,
Between their lov'd homes and the war's desolation;
Blest with vict'ry and peace, may the heav'n-rescued land
Praise the Pow'r that hath made and preserv'd us as a nation!
Then conquer we must, when our cause 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!



History: In 1814, about a week after the city of Washington had been badly burned, British troops moved up to the primary port at Baltimore Harbor in Maryland. Frances Scott Key visited the British fleet in the Harbor on September 13th to secure the release of Dr. William Beanes who had been captured during the Washington raid. The two were detained on the ship so as not to warn the Americans while the Royal Navy attempted to bombard Fort McHenry. At dawn on the 14th, Key noted that the huge American flag, which now hangs in the Smithsonian's American History Museum, was still waving and had not been removed in defeat. The sight inspired him to write a poem entitled Defense of Fort McHenry; later the poem was set to music that had been previously composed by a Mr. Smith. The song was immediately noted as an inspiring song that should be the national anthem of the United States of America. It was accepted as such by public demand for the next century or so, but became even more accepted as the national anthem during the World Series of Baseball in 1917 when it was sung in honor of the brave armed forces fighting in the Great War. The World Series performance moved everyone in attendance, and after that it was repeated for every game. Finally, on March 3, 1931, the American Congress proclaimed it as the national anthem, 116 years after it was first written.

 

ABOUT:
 

Francis Scott Key was born on August 1, 1779 in western Maryland.  He graduated from Johns College in Annapolis at age 17.  By 1805, Key had established a law practice in Maryland.  In August 1814, Key’s friend, Dr. William Beanes was taken prisoner by the British army.  Key and a government prisoner of war exchange agent sailed down the bay on a truce ship and met the British fleet.  Key negotiated the doctor’s release, but was detained by the British until after the attack on Fort McHenry. 

     The ship that Key was on was 8 miles below the fort during the bombardment.  It was from this site that he witnessed the British attack on Fort McHenry.  Thrilled by the sight of the flag and that the fort had not fallen; Key took a letter from his pocket, and began to write some verses on the back of it.  Later, after the British fleet had withdrawn, Key completed his poem at the Baltimore Hotel.  He then sent it to a printer and within a few days the poem was put to the music of an old English song.  Both the new song and the flag became known as “The Star-Spangled Banner.”

     Francis Scott Key died on January 11, 1843 of pleurisy.  The flag he so honored flies day and night at Fort McHenry.

     The American flag that flew over Fort McHenry was donated to the Smithsonian Institute in 1912 on the condition that it would remain there forever.
 


Francis Scott Key was a respected young lawyer living in Georgetown just west of where the modern day Key Bridge crosses the Potomac River (the house was torn down after years of neglect in 1947). He made his home there from 1804 to around 1833 with his wife Mary and their six sons and five daughters. At the time, Georgetown was a thriving town of 5,000 people just a few miles from the Capitol, the White House, and the Federal buildings of Washington.

But, after war broke out in 1812 over Britian's attempts to regulate American shipping and other activities while Britain was at war with France, all was not tranquil in Georgetown. The British had entered Chesapeake Bay on August 19th, 1814, and by the evening of the 24th of August, the British had invaded and captured Washington. They set fire to the Capitol and the White House, the flames visible 40 miles away in Baltimore.

President James Madison,his wife Dolley, and his Cabinet had already fled to a safer location. Such was their haste to leave that they had had to rip the Stuart portrait of George Washington from the walls without its frame!

A thunderstorm at dawn kept the fires from spreading. The next day more buildings were burned and again a thunderstorm dampened the fires. Having done their work the British troops returned to their ships in and around the Chesapeake Bay.

In the days following the attack on Washington, the American forces prepared for the assault on Baltimore (population 40,000) that they knew would come by both land and sea. Word soon reached Francis Scott Key that the British had carried off an elderly and much loved town physician of Upper Marlboro, Dr. William Beanes, and was being held on the British flagship TONNANT. The townsfolk feared that Dr. Beanes would be hanged. They asked Francis Scott Key for his help, and he agreed, and arranged to have Col. John Skinner, an American agent for prisoner exchange to accompany him.

On the morning of September 3rd, he and Col. Skinner set sail from Baltimore aboard a sloop flying a flag of truce approved by President Madison. On the 7th they found and boarded the TONNANT to confer with Gen. Ross and Adm. Alexander Cochrane. At first they refused to release Dr. Beanes. But Key and Skinner produced a pouch of letters written by wounded British prisoners praising the care they were receiving from the Americans, among them Dr. Beanes. The British officers relented but would not release the three Americans immediately because they had seen and heard too much of the preparations for the attack on Baltimore. They were placed under guard, first aboard the H.M.S. Surprise, then onto the sloop and forced to wait out the battle behind the British fleet.

Now let's go back to the summer of 1813 for a moment. At the star-shaped Fort McHenry, the commander, Maj. George Armistead, asked for a flag so big that "the British would have no trouble seeing it from a distance". Two officers, a Commodore and a General, were sent to the Baltimore home of Mary Young Pickersgill, a "maker of colours," and commisioned the flag. Mary and her thirteen year old daughter Caroline, working in an upstairs front bedroom, used 400 yards of best quality wool bunting. They cut 15 stars that measured two feet from point to point. Eight red and seven white stripes, each two feet wide, were cut. Laying out the material on the malthouse floor of Claggett's Brewery, a neighborhood establishment, the flag was sewn together. By August it was finished. It measured 30 by 42 feet and cost $405.90. The Baltimore Flag House, a museum, now occupies her premises, which were restored in 1953.

At 7 a.m. on the morning of September 13, 1814, the British bombardment began, and the flag was ready to meet the enemy. The bombardment continued for 25 hours,the British firing 1,500 bombshells that weighed as much as 220 pounds and carried lighted fuses that would supposedly cause it to explode when it reached its target. But they weren't very dependable and often blew up in mid air. From special small boats the British fired the new Congreve rockets that traced wobbly arcs of red flame across the sky. The Americans had sunk 22 vessels so a close approach by the British was not possible. That evening the connonading stopped, but at about 1 a.m. on the 14th, the British fleet roared to life, lighting the rainy night sky with grotesque fireworks.

Key, Col. Skinner, and Dr. Beanes watched the battle with apprehension. They knew that as long as the shelling continued, Fort McHenry had not surrendered. But, long before daylight there came a sudden and mysterious silence. What the three Americans did not know was that the British land assault on Baltimore as well as the naval attack, had been abandoned. Judging Baltimore as being too costly a prize, the British officers ordered a retreat.

Waiting in the predawn darkness, Key waited for the sight that would end his anxiety; the joyous sight of Gen. Armisteads great flag blowing in the breeze. When at last daylight came, the flag was still there!

Being an amatuer poet and having been so uniquely inspired, Key began to write on the back of a letter he had in his pocket. Sailing back to Baltimore he composed more lines and in his lodgings at the Indian Queen Hotel he finished the poem. Judge J. H. Nicholson, his brother-in-law, took it to a printer and copies were circulated around Baltimore under the title "Defence of Fort M'Henry". Two of these copies survive. It was printed in a newspaper for the first time in the Baltimore Patriot on September 20th,1814, then in papers as far away as Georgia and New Hampshire. To the verses was added a note "Tune: Anacreon in Heaven." In October a Baltimore actor sang Key's new song in a public performance and called it "The Star-Spangled Banner".

Immediately popular, it remained just one of several patriotic airs until it was finally adopted as our national anthem on March 3, 1931. But the actual words were not included in the legal documents. Key himself had written several versions with slight variations so discrepancies in the exact wording still occur.

The flag, our beloved Star-Spangled Banner, went on view ,for the first time after flying over Fort McHenry, on January 1st,1876 at the Old State House in Philadelphia for the nations' Centennial celebration. It now resides in the Smithsonian Institution's Museum of American History. An opaque curtain shields the now fragile flag from light and dust. The flag is exposed for viewing for a few moments once every hour during museum hours.

Francis Scott Key was a witness to the last enemy fire to fall on Fort McHenry. The Fort was designed by a Frenchman named Jean Foncin and was named for then Secretary of war James McHenry. Fort McHenry holds the unique designation of national monument and historic shrine.

Since May 30th, 1949 the flag has flown continuously, by a Joint Resolution of Congress, over the monument marking the site of Francis Scott Key's birthplace, Terra Rubra Farm, Carroll County, Keymar, Maryland.

The copy that Key wrote in his hotel September 14,1814, remained in the Nicholson family for 93 years. In 1907 it was sold to Henry Walters of Baltimore. In 1934 it was bought at auction in New York from the Walters estate by the Walters Art Gallery, Baltimore for $26,400. The Walters Gallery in 1953 sold the manuscript to the Maryland Historical Society for the same price. Another copy that Key made is in the Library of Congress.

 

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Astrological Information

 

Description: Frances Scott Key

Natal Date: 8/1/1779

Planetary Positions:

Sun

130.93

18.16

Moon

350.67

-9.48

Mercury

152.18

12.29

Venus

108.63

22.41

Mars

229.37

-20.79

Jupiter

176.07

2.98

Saturn

228.52

-15.82

Uranus

81.94

23.36

Neptune

180.02

1.49

Pluto

305.59

-24.28

mean Node

66.41

21.70

true Node

67.96

21.90

mean Apoge

297.12

-24.92

osc. Apoge

310.73

-22.62

Earth

0.00

0.00

Chiron

30.00

12.09

Pholus

314.93

-23.91

Ceres

192.81

2.45

Pallas

201.26

15.93

Juno

132.43

11.77


 

Sun Sign


In Leo the Sun gives an active mind, good nature, generosity, many friends. Is a natural leader, ambitious, independent, determined, persistent, industrious, honest and very conscientious; philosophical, philanthropic. Quickly angered but quickly appeased. Has a sunny disposition, is frank, outspoken, candid, forceful and greatly appreciates affection in which he is usually ardent and sincere. Magnetic, intuitive and inventive; fond of children, sports, drama, honors and high office.
The Sun is the planetary ruler of the sign Leo.

 

Longitudinal Aspect Legend


Cutoff for error is 3.00 degrees.

The less the error the more powerful what is written for each aspect. Error of zero being strongest.

Good aspects:
0 degrees (Most Powerful)
120 and 240 degrees (Very Powerful)
30 and 150 (Powerful) equal

Aspects that can be negative or present challenges but can still be good:
180 degrees
90 degrees
45 degrees

 

Longitudes


MERCURY Semisquare-45 degrees VENUS with an error of 1.38 degrees.
Aspect strength = 65.53%

This aspect is not very malignant or important. It gives fondness or desire for all the aforementioned, but not so much ability for their execution, and some minor obstacles and hindrance in Venus and Mercury affairs.


MERCURY Semisextile-30 degrees NEPTUNE with an error of 2.87 degrees.
Aspect strength = 28.20%

Artistic voice, talented at singing; artistic, creative and productive mind; musical genius; natural acting skills, particularly the ability to deliver lines with skill; poetic speech; ability to write original books, poetry and music with inspiration; dramatic communicator; innovative ideas bordering on, or equal to, genius.


MERCURY Sesquiquadrate-150 degrees PLUTO with an error of 2.67 degrees.
Aspect strength = 33.31%

Business skills; political skills; good at debating; commanding, forceful, domineering speaker, able to rouse an audience; business tactician; power broker; a voice and /or mind that commands attention, and demands attention; Pluto can elevate the mind and voice through this pairing.


VENUS Trine-120 degrees MARS with an error of .31 degrees.
Aspect strength = 92.23%

Grace of motion because Venus rules grace and beauty, and Mars rules the muscles, energy, actions and movement; harmonious energy; abundant energy; money from whatever is ruled by Mars, including athletics and sports, war and the military, weaponry, the development and maintenance of muscles and the body; love of war because Mars rules war and Venus rules desire.


VENUS Trine-120 degrees SATURN with an error of .77 degrees.
Aspect strength = 80.82%

Desire to have control over money and personal relationships, if this paring is quadralized with a Jupiter pairing, there is ability to make money; money from discipline, such persons place the value of money higher than the personal life; not stylish and not fashionable, such persons will not dress like the models on the cover of Vogue magazine; sometimes this person is unable to truly love anyone and is generally less emotional than most.


VENUS Semisextile-30 degrees URANUS with an error of 2.68 degrees.
Aspect strength = 32.99%

Loved and adored by the public; public idol; photogenic and charismatic, beautiful on screen and in print; money from sources ruled by Uranus and/or love of whatever is Uranian, including change, entertainment, broadcasting, the movies, telecommunications, publicity and fame, astrology, public performances of all kinds, space travel and flying, technology.


MARS Conjunct-0 degrees SATURN with an error of 1.08 degrees.
Aspect strength = 73.05%

This pairing can mean control of war and is a pairing of someone who is a pacifist or is unwilling to be confrontational; but this can also be a pairing indicative of obsessive desires and sustained energy.


MARS Sesquiquadrate-150 degrees URANUS with an error of 2.37 degrees.
Aspect strength = 40.76%

Massive amounts of energy; directs energy to fame; brings war to the world; aggressive; impulsive and impatient. This aspect signifies a great reservoir of physical energy and a special talent in Uranian endeavors and careers. In a man, this aspect is a Sexual Aspect, as well as often indicating a man who desires changes of sexual partners. Mars is the male sex planet, and the Uranian influence tends to cause Mars to fluctuate, thus changing the sexual attractions of the man. If the Personal Aspect is turbulent, the desire for a variation in sex partners is accentuated.


JUPITER Sesquiquadrate-150 degrees CHIRON with an error of 2.41 degrees.
Aspect strength = 39.81%

This is one of the most powerful of all aspects, as this Super Aspect provides the native with a fabulous public image and a commanding presence, which instills confidence and wins trust. It foretells a great destiny and career and can result in noteworthy success, ultimate intuitive genius, and success through charisma in anything ruled by Chiron. No matter how powerful and helpful one aspect is, though, there is no substitute for hard work, determination, and tenacity.


URANUS Sextile-60 degrees CHIRON with an error of 1.78 degrees.
Aspect strength = 55.50%

This is a very powerful and helpful aspect, but unfortunately, it occurs too rarely (about every five years). It is most helpful when the native directs the aspect to achieve great fame and success in an area ruled by Chiron or Uranus. A person with this aspect has the ultimate in hypnotic charisma.

 

 

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