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The Star-Spangled Banner: History, Lyrics, and More

Read about the rich history, powerful lyrics, and significance of the national anthem of the United States of America, 'The Star-Spangled Banner.' Learn about its origins, the story behind the lyrics, and its enduring role as a symbol of American patriotism.


  • "The Star-Spangled Banner" was written by Francis Scott Key in 1814.
  • Key was inspired to write it after witnessing the American flag still flying over Fort McHenry during the War of 1812.
  • The song gained popularity and was recognized as the unofficial national anthem over time.
  • In 1931, it was officially adopted as the United States national anthem.


O 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 through 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;
O say does that star-spangled banner yet wave
O'er the land of the free and the home of the brave?


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