Francis Scott Key – September 14, 1814

Experience the American dream with today’s Patriot of the Past interview. I’m your host, John Gillespie.

It’s September 14, 1814. I’m with Francis Scott Key who was an eyewitness to last night’s battle.

JG: “Mr. Key, tell us what happened.”

FSK: “John, I went out to a British military ship to negotiate the release of an American prisoner. But I was prevented from leaving as dozens of ships started firing on Fort McHenry. It went on all night. All I could do is pray. As daylight came, I was overcome with emotion to see the American flag still flying over the fort. I wrote a poem to capture how I felt.”

Mr. Key’s poem has had an impact on Americans for over 250 years. My eyes tear up every time I sing the words to his poem, The Star Spangled Banner.

Read more about Francis Scott Key.

John and Jan Gillespie are the founders of the Rawhide Boys’ Ranch; they have fostered 351 teenagers and wrote the book Our 351 Sons; they have also assisted numerous churches in developing youth programs and expanding their total church ministries. After running for U.S. Senate, John founded 1776 American Dream, which exists to demonstrate the vision of our founding fathers and help our generation of youth passionately embrace those values.

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