Today we visited Baltimore schools to see if they would work for us next year.
This afternoon, we visited Fort McHenry National Monument and Historic Shrine, where American forces turned back a British naval assault during the Battle of Baltimore in the War of 1812. Inspired by seeing the survival of the fort, Francis Scott Key wrote the poem “Defence of Fort McHenry”, soon renamed “The Star-Spangled Banner,” the national anthem of the United States of America.
The visitor center had great displays and an amazing film:
The kids completed their Junior Ranger workbooks and received their patches:
I later discovered that the badge the kids received was for Star-Spangled Banner National Historic Trail, not Fort McHenry. We called the visitor center, and they will be mailing to us the correct badges, as well as the workbooks for this badge that we received:
We left the visitor center and walked to the fort:
A bomb shelter built under the fort after the bombardment of the Battle of Baltimore:
The original underground cross brace for the pole from which flew the Star Spangled Banner is on display:
From this room, Major George Armistead planned the defense of Fort McHenry:
We later found out that the rangers will raise and lower flags that visitors bring with them to the fort:
Lowering the flag for the night:
It’s not hard to imagine a fleet of dozens of British ships, less than two miles away, firing cannons, mortars, and rockets at the fort as the defenders huddled against the walls.
And the rockets’ red glare, the bombs bursting in air,
Gave proof through 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?