See Our Star-Spangled Banner Replica!

A Historic Moment at the White House for Our
Star-Spangled Banner Replica

Part of the National Park Service's 200th Anniversary Commemoration of the British Capture and Burning of Washington

Dear Reader, 

Participants unfurl the Star-Spangled Banner Replica at Fort McHenry
Image courtesy NPS volunteer Tim Ervin

Two hundred years to the day that the British burned the White House, on August 24, 2014, we will unfurl the Star-Spangled Banner Replica at President's Park on the White House Ellipse in Washington, DC -- and we want you to join us! 


This historic event is one of several programs presented in partnership with the National Park Service and Fort McHenry National Monument and Historic Shrine in commemoration of the 200th Anniversary of the British capture of Washington, DC. 


"The story of "The Star-Spangled Banner" represents a tale of two cities," says Vincent Vaise, Chief of Interpretation at Fort McHenry National Monument and Historic Shrine, "With the British capture of the capital, Americans were looking for a victory. That victory happened three weeks later in Baltimore. The flag represented both a sense of hope during those dark hours as the White House burned and a sense of triumph as the British withdrew from Fort McHenry. The White House and Fort McHenry are linked by this common history."


"The defeat at Washington galvanized Americans and united them against a common enemy. Although the capital had been captured, the spirit of the American people remained undefeated. The stars and stripes symbolized that spirit," Vaise added.


Events of the day are as follows:


Broad Stripes and Bright Stars!
Sunday August 24, 2014
President's Park, White House Ellipse
Located near 15th and E Streets, NW Washington, DC
11 am and 3 pm

Visitors will get to hold a full-sized Replica of the 30' x 42' U.S. flag that inspired Francis Scott Key to write "The Star-Spangled Banner."

Chief of Interpretation Vincent Vaise will highlight the British capture of Washington, D.C., the burning of the White House and the successful Defense of Baltimore. Visitors will understand how the events of August and September, 1814, shaped how many Americans currently see the flag as the symbol of the spirit of the American people and how that spirit of resilience led to the rebuilding of the Capitol and White House after the War of 1812.


The Key Story
Sunday, August 24
President's Park, White House Ellipse
Located near 15th and E Streets, NW Washington, DC
1:30 pm

"Meet" Francis Scott Key, author of "The Star-Spangled Banner" as he is portrayed by a Park Ranger. Learn about Key's life as a father and lawyer in Georgetown, Key's role in defending Washington, the series of events that led to his writing the song that later becomes the National Anthem, and his active role in Washington politics after the War of 1812. A lively question and answer session will follow the formal presentation.


A Project of National Pride

Education Director Kristin Schenning and Stitchers around the completed flag


The Maryland Historical Society's 30 x 42 foot Star-Spangled Banner Replica was created by expert 'stitchers' from quilt guilds across Maryland, as well as more than 2,000 volunteers in the summer of 2013. It is the most faithful reproduction of the Star-Spangled Banner flag yet produced.


For six weeks, volunteers worked eight hours a day, stitching together the red, white and blue fabric and adding 15 two-foot stars. The public was invited to participate, and patriotic 'stitchers' from every state and countries around the globe descended on the Maryland Historical Society. Notable 'stitchers' included descendants of Mary Pickersgill, the original creator of the Star-Spangled Banner, government officials such as Baltimore Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake, Senator Ben Cardin, Congressman John Sarbanes, United States Representative and House Democratic Whip Steny Hoyer, and Maryland Governor Martin O'Malley.


On Defender's Day, 2013, the completed Star-Spangled Banner Replica was first flown at Fort McHenry National Monument and Historic Shrine, the site where Francis Scott Key witnessed the original flag. Since then, it has traveled to 1812 battlefields across the state as part of the bicentennial commemorations of the War of 1812.


Even if you can't join us in Washington, DC, you can still participate in a season of special events commemorating the War of 1812:


Frederick Under the Flag: Frederick's Role in 19th Century Conflicts
Saturday, August 23, 2014
Frederick, Maryland

As the name suggests, this commemoration will focus on events related to Frederick's involvement in the War of 1812, American Civil War and Spanish-American War. In each, Frederick contributed its share of participants, and three would become national heroes in the form of Francis Scott Key, Barbara Fritchie and Admiral Winfield Scott Schley. The Barracks here was the major site of Western Maryland militia mustering in 1812, and 50 years later saw Civil War troops, serving as a major Union Army hospital center. There will be plenty of programming...topping the list is the Maryland Historical Society's Star-Spangled replica flag and accompanying exhibit (stitched last year in Baltimore). Other programming will include the US Sanitary Commission exhibit and CW soldiers. The festivities will include the unveiling of a restored 1812 cannon, dredged from the Inner Harbor and given to MSD by the State's 1812 Centennial Commission one hundred years ago. See more at: their website.

August 30, 10 AM-7PM (See the flag Saturday ONLY!)
August 31, 12-6 PM Brookville
1814 Brookeville: US Capital for a Day

The historic celebration will be supervised by the Montgomery County Police, with all day road closings of Rt. 97 and Market St. Shuttle buses will bring visitors to town from the Glenmont Metro Station (12501 Georgia Ave., Silver Spring), Camp Bennett (20501 Georgia Avenue, Brookville), and Medstar Montgomery Medical Center's construction lot (across from 18101 Prince Phillip Drive, Olney) to the Longwood Community Center on the south side of town, and to a private residence with a circular driveway near Brookeville Rd. and Rt. 97 on the north side of town. Parking is free at Camp Bennett and the Medical Center.

Website and directions

August 31, 10 AM-4 PM   |   Kent County
War of 1812 Battle of Caulk's Field

See the Pride of Baltimore II, hear the Kent County Marching Band, witness American and British encampments, and more! A musical performance by the The Ship's Company Chanteymen precedes a formal wreath laying ceremony and dedication of new 1812 monuments. The Star-Spangled Banner Replica will be unfurled before a re-enactment of the battle!

Star-Spangled Spectacular
September 10-16, 2014
Baltimore, Maryland


This free, city-wide festival will celebrate the 200th anniversary of our national anthem. Tall ships, Navy gray hulls and the Blue Angels will come to Baltimore's famed Inner Harbor to celebrate The Star-Spangled Banner. Landside festivals include living history demonstrations, a family fun-zone, live musical performances, and Chesapeake food and beverage. Events crescendo on September 13 with a star-studded patriotic concert and extraordinary fireworks display over Fort McHenry and the Baltimore harbor. For more information:


'In Full Glory Reflected' Exhibition Relaunch: New 1812 Treasures!
Maryland Historical Society
201 W. Monument Street, Baltimore, MD 21201


The Maryland Historical Society proudly relaunches its critically acclaimed exhibit, 'In Full Glory Reflected: Maryland in the War of 1812' with new objects and artifacts. Opening September 8, 2014 is the completed BEARINGS of Baltimore, Circa 1815 installation, which is a Google Map-like view of Early Baltimore. Visitors can select from more than a dozen interactive 'hotspots,' such as the Indian Queen Tavern and the Hampstead Hill Entrenchments, to see how they looked right after the Battle of Baltimore. Many of the buildings no longer exist today, so think of it as your personal 'time machine' to see Baltimore as it really looked 200 years ago.


Also featured are the pistol and spyglass owned by Commodore Joshua Barney, commander of the Chesapeake Bay Flotilla. Period 1812 dresses are remarkable survivals from the era. Also on view is one of the earliest printed broadsides (a one-sided single sheet of paper) of "Defence of Fort McHenry," published in 1814. For more information:


We look forward to seeing you on Sunday in Washington!


Burton Kummerow

President, The Maryland Historical Society

About The Maryland Historical Society


Founded in 1844, The Maryland Historical Society Museum and Library occupies an entire city block in the Mount Vernon district of Baltimore. The society's mission is to "collect, preserve, and interpret the objects and materials that reflect Maryland's diverse cultural heritage." The Society is home to the original manuscript of the Star-Spangled Banner and publishes a quarterly titled "Maryland Historical Magazine."