Tag Archives: national anthem

Home of the Brave

Gentlemen and ladies, please remove your hats for the singing of our national anthem.

We sing it at the beginning of sporting events, during worship services, at memorials for veterans, and in grade school music class. The first verse of this song gets all the fame, oftentimes springing from the throats of our most talented singers who are chosen to step up to a mic and belt the tune. The rest of us stand and face the flag while mumbling the familiar words, bursting in applause as soon as the singer draws out “hooooome of the braaaaaaaave.”

The Star-Spangled Banner, words penned by Francis Scott Key, has become synonymous with patriotism. The poem was written in 1814 and was put to the tune of a British drinking song by John Stafford Smith. By President Herbert Hoover’s signature, it became officially recognized as the United State’s national anthem on March 3, 1931. In 2009, nationalism has certainly changed if not dwindled in the U.S.A., but, for many of us, The Star-Spangled Banner will always hold a special spot in our hearts, if only for it signaling the start of a baseball game in the middle of the summer.

Here are some recommended items on Internet Archive focused on the national song:


  • An oral history of Francis Scott Key followed by the song
  • A classic instrumental rendition of the anthem
  • Blues Travelers’ version performed in 1989
  • The Star-Spangled Banner, 1915
  • A version performed by Guster in 2006
  • Watch

  • A short film from the 1940s, a sort of ode to the American flag
  • A film from 1942 showcasing military clips and fireworks
  • Read

  • The Centenary of the Star-Spangled Banner
  • An Essay on the Star-Spangled Banner and National Songs
  • Francis Scott Key Author of the Star Spangled Banner: What Else He Was and Who
  • Poems of the Late Francis S. Key
  • –Cara Binder

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