Saturday, October 19, 2019

And The Flag Was Still There

The United States national anthem is the words to a poem, written by Francis Scott Key, set the melody of an old Scottish drinking song.  Maybe that explains why it is so hard to sing well, when sober.  The poem describes the battle of Fort McHenry at the mouth of the harbor in Baltimore.  When we visited we took a local passenger ferry from the inner harbor in Baltimore out to Ft. McHenry, a very nice 20 minute ride.  

Francis Scott Key's family owned a tavern in Washington DC, the Key Tavern.  The national park service "lost" the building.  How do you lose a building.  Well, it was disassembled to be moved when the Key Bridge was built, but they hadn't agreed on a location and didn't have money to rebuild it. Parts of it were stored in a warehouse, the bricks were numbered and stored in a maintenance yard.  And in the fullness of time, a couple of decades later the location was decided on, and funds were appropriated.  When the engineers went to look at the pile of bricks, they were gone.  The pile had been scavenged for bricks for Park Service projects, and many had simply been carried away by people who had access to the yard.  Used to build backyard barbecues and such.  Parts of the interior and structure were in the warehouse, but the building itself was gone.  Opps!  The flag was still there, but the building was gone. 

10 comments:

  1. I’ve always preferred America the Beautiful. Shame about those bricks. And the people with the backyard barbecues don’t even know what they’ve got... if they’ve still got them.

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    Replies
    1. America the Beautiful is much easier to sing well.

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  2. No surprise there. Of course the bricks would be pilfered, but Park Service took bricks too?

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    1. I think people forgot what the bricks were about.

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  3. I second mitchell; just remove the "god" reference and we got us an anthem!

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  4. Replies
    1. IT was old, and connected with a famous name, but was it historic?

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  5. I've heard tell some of the members of the that drinking club were not all they should have been.

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