Ad-Express and Daily Iowegian, Centerville, IA

Columns

July 16, 2013

Story behind our 'National Anthem'

Dear Editor,

In the early days of America, Briton was unwilling for the pioneers of the 13 United States of America to be free. Consider the statement included in our Declaration of Independence written in 1776, "The history of the King of Great Briton is a history of repeated injuries and usurptions, all having in direct object the establishment of an absolute Tyranny over these States." Included was The Stamp Act which was taxation on Americans to raise funds to help support the British Army stationed in America after 1763. Those early American pioneers were confronted with much adversity in establishing the great nation which America is today.

During the War of 1812, British forces had taken prisoner a physician, Dr. William Beanes and held him aboard a warship in Chesapeak Bay. Francis Scott Key and John Skinner both from Washington, D. C. were given permission by the Secretary of State James Monroe to communicate with the British in an effort to get the doctor released.

The British were preparing to bombard Ft. McHenry which protected the city of Baltimore. The bombardment started on Tuesday, Sept. 13, 1814 and continued all day and all night. When confronted concerning Dr. Beanes, the British agreed they would release him but they continued to hold him and the other Americans until after the battle ended. Toward morning of Sept. 14, it became clear the American forces had withstood the 25 hour bombardment. After sunrise, the British did release the three Americans. And after Francis Scott Key was released and he saw our flag flying, he was inspired to write a poem about what he had seen and heard that night concerning the Star Spangled Banner. The poem was set to the melody of an old military march and became popular immediately. But it wasn't until March 1931 Congress officially approved the song as our national anthem. As we hear and sing it today, it is hard to realize the circumstances of our National Anthem.

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Poll

The Iowegian wants readers to think about the solicitation ordinance that will prevent groups or individuals from entering a roadway to solicit money. The Centerville City Council in June by a 5-0 vote passed the first reading of just such an ordinance. Public pressure and during a subsequent special meeting, the council voted 3-2 to table the ordinance. A second special meeting to discuss the solicitation ordinance is scheduled for 5:30 p.m. Thursday, Aug. 7 at City Hall. So, the question of the week is, "Do you or do you not support the ordinance to prevent solicitation of funds in city streets?"

A. I support the ordinance
B. I do not support the ordinance
C. Not sure
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