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Old 06-13-2007, 05:44 AM   #1
Senior Member
 
Zimectrin's Avatar
 
Winnebago Owners Club
Join Date: May 2000
Location: Sioux Falls SD USA
Posts: 415
I don't care for long posts, and this may have been seen by many of you before.....But if not, and you have a moment, it is worth the time to read.


Unless you know all four stanzas of the Star Spangled Banner
(and even if you knew them ~ here's an historical perspective. ) You may
find this most interesting. Perhaps most of you didn't realize what
Francis Scott Key's profession was or what he was doing on a ship. This is a
good brush-up on your history.

( Editor's Note- Near the end of his life, the great science
fiction author Isaac Asimov wrote a short story about the four stanzas
of our national anthem. However brief, this well-circulated piece is
an eye opener from the dearly departed doctor......)

" I have a weakness -- I am crazy, absolutely nuts, about our
national anthem. The words are difficult and the tune is almost
impossible, but frequently when I'm taking a shower I sing it with as much
power and emotion as I can. It shakes me up every time."

Following is the piece he wrote:
NO REFUGE COULD SAVE : BY DR. ISAAC ASIMOV
Hi Folks,

Son Jim sent this powerful message and song to me. Hope you read the entire item. It IS very special. GFS

I was once asked to speak at a luncheon. Taking my life in my
hands, I announced I was going to sing our national anthem --
all four stanzas.

This was greeted with loud groans. One man closed the door to
the kitchen, where the noise of dishes and cutlery was loud and
distracting.

Thanks, Herb," I said.
That's all right," he said. "It was at the request
of the kitchen staff."

I explained the background of the anthem and then
sang all four stanzas.
Let me tell you, those people had never heard it before -- or
had never really listened. I got a standing ovation. But it was not me;
it was the anthem.

More recently, while conducting a seminar, I told my students
the story of the anthem and sang all four stanzas. Again there was a wild
ovation and prolonged applause. And again, it was the anthem and not me.

So now let me tell you how it came to be written.

In 1812, the United States went to war with Great Britain,
primarily over freedom of the seas. We were in the right. For two years,
we held off the British, even though we were still a rather weak
country. Great Britain was in a life and death struggle with Napoleon. In
fact, just as the United States declared war, Napoleon marched off to invade
Russia.

If he won, as everyone expected, he would control Europe, and
Great Britain would be isolated. It was no time for her to be
involved in an American war.

At first, our seamen proved better than the British. After we
won a battle on Lake Erie in 1813, the American commander, Oliver
Hazard Perry, sent the message, "We have met the enemy and they are ours."

However, the weight of the British navy beat down our ships eventually.
New England, hard-hit by a tightening blockade, threatened secession.

Meanwhile, Napoleon was beaten in Russia and in 1814 was forced
to abdicate. Great Britain now turned its attention to the United
States, launching a three-pronged attack.

The northern prong was to come down Lake Champlain toward New
York and seize parts of New England.

The southern prong was to go up the Mississippi, take New
Orleans and paralyze the west.

The central prong was to head for the mid-Atlantic states and
then attack Baltimore, the greatest port south of New York. If
Baltimore was taken, the nation, which still hugged the Atlantic coast,
could be split in two. The fate of the United States, then, rested to a large
extent on the success or failure of the central prong.

The British reached the American coast, and on August 24, 1814,
took Washington, D.C. Then they moved up the Chesapeake Bay toward
Baltimore.

On September 12, they arrived and found 1,000 men in Fort
McHenry, whose guns controlled the harbor. If the British wished to take
Baltimore, they would have to take the fort.

On one of the British ships was an aged physician, William
Beanes, who had been arrested in Maryland and brought along as a prisoner.
Francis Scott Key, a lawyer and friend of the physician, had come to
the ship to negotiate his release.

The British captain was willing, but the two Americans would
have to wait. It was now the night of September 13, and the bombardment
of Fort McHenry was about to start.

As twilight deepened, Key and Beanes saw the American flag
flying over Fort McHenry. Through the night, they heard bombs bursting and
saw the red glare of rockets. They knew the fort was resisting and the
American flag was still flying. But toward morning the bombardment
ceased, and a dread silence fell. Either Fort McHenry had surrendered and the
British flag flew above it, or the bombardment had failed and the
American flag still flew.

As dawn began to brighten the eastern sky, Key and Beanes
stared out at the fort, trying to see which flag flew over it. He and the
physician must have asked each other over and over, "Can you see the flag?"

After it was all finished, Key wrote a four stanza poem telling
the events of the night. Called "The Defense of Fort McHenry," it
was published in newspapers and swept the nation. Someone noted
that the words fit an old English tune called, "To Anacreon in Heaven"
-- a difficult melody with an uncomfortably large vocal range. For
obvious reasons, Key's work became known as "The Star Spangled Banner,"
and in 1931 Congress declared it the official anthem of the United States.

Now that you know the story, here are the words. Presumably,
the old doctor is speaking. This is what he asks Key:

Oh! 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 thro' the night that our flag was still there.
Oh! say, does that star-spangled banner yet wave,
O'er the land of the free and the home of the brave?

("Ramparts," in case you don't know, are the protective walls
or other elevations that surround a fort.) The first stanza asks a
question. The second gives an answer:

On the shore, dimly seen thro' the mist of the deep
Where the foe's haughty host in dread silence reposes,
What is that which the breeze, o'er the towering steep.
As it fitfully blows, half conceals, half discloses?
Now it catches the gleam of the morning's first beam,
In full glory reflected, now shines on the stream
'Tis the star-spangled banner. Oh! long may it wave
O'er the land of the free and the home of the brave!

The towering steep" is again, the ramparts. The bombardment
has failed, and the British can do nothing more but sail away, their
mission a failure.

In the third stanza I feel Key allows himself to gloat
over the American triumph. In the aftermath of the bombardment, Key
probably was in no mood to act otherwise? During World War I when the
British were our Staunchest allies, this third stanza was not sung. However,
I know it, so here it is:

And where is that band who so vauntingly swore
That the havoc of war and the battle's confusion
A home and a country should leave us no more?
Their blood has washed out their foul footstep's pollution.
No refuge could save the hireling and slave
From the terror of flight, or the gloom of the grave,
And the star-spangled banner in triumph doth wave
O'er the land of the free and the home of the brave.

The fourth stanza, a pious hope for the future, should be sung
more slowly than the other three and with even deeper feeling):

Oh! thus be it ever, when freemen shall stand
Between their loved homes and the war's desolation,
Blest with victory and peace, may the Heaven - rescued land
Praise the Power that hath made and preserved us a nation.
Then conquer we must, for our cause is just,
And this be our motto --"In God is our trust."
And the star-spangled banner in triumph doth wave
O'er the land of the free and the home of the brave.

I hope you will look at the national anthem with new eyes.
Listen to it, the next time you have a chance, with new ears. Pay
attention to the words. And don't let them ever take it away ... not even
one word of it.

OH! and by the way:
IT'S ALWAYS TO BE SUNG IN ENGLISH!

May we who are brave, stand strong and protect our liberties
against all foes and not ever forget those who have given their all
and still are.
__________________

__________________
Steve & Sherri
2002 Winnebago Journey DL 39QD
Zimectrin is offline   Reply With Quote
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Old 06-13-2007, 05:44 AM   #2
Senior Member
 
Zimectrin's Avatar
 
Winnebago Owners Club
Join Date: May 2000
Location: Sioux Falls SD USA
Posts: 415
I don't care for long posts, and this may have been seen by many of you before.....But if not, and you have a moment, it is worth the time to read.


Unless you know all four stanzas of the Star Spangled Banner
(and even if you knew them ~ here's an historical perspective. ) You may
find this most interesting. Perhaps most of you didn't realize what
Francis Scott Key's profession was or what he was doing on a ship. This is a
good brush-up on your history.

( Editor's Note- Near the end of his life, the great science
fiction author Isaac Asimov wrote a short story about the four stanzas
of our national anthem. However brief, this well-circulated piece is
an eye opener from the dearly departed doctor......)

" I have a weakness -- I am crazy, absolutely nuts, about our
national anthem. The words are difficult and the tune is almost
impossible, but frequently when I'm taking a shower I sing it with as much
power and emotion as I can. It shakes me up every time."

Following is the piece he wrote:
NO REFUGE COULD SAVE : BY DR. ISAAC ASIMOV
Hi Folks,

Son Jim sent this powerful message and song to me. Hope you read the entire item. It IS very special. GFS

I was once asked to speak at a luncheon. Taking my life in my
hands, I announced I was going to sing our national anthem --
all four stanzas.

This was greeted with loud groans. One man closed the door to
the kitchen, where the noise of dishes and cutlery was loud and
distracting.

Thanks, Herb," I said.
That's all right," he said. "It was at the request
of the kitchen staff."

I explained the background of the anthem and then
sang all four stanzas.
Let me tell you, those people had never heard it before -- or
had never really listened. I got a standing ovation. But it was not me;
it was the anthem.

More recently, while conducting a seminar, I told my students
the story of the anthem and sang all four stanzas. Again there was a wild
ovation and prolonged applause. And again, it was the anthem and not me.

So now let me tell you how it came to be written.

In 1812, the United States went to war with Great Britain,
primarily over freedom of the seas. We were in the right. For two years,
we held off the British, even though we were still a rather weak
country. Great Britain was in a life and death struggle with Napoleon. In
fact, just as the United States declared war, Napoleon marched off to invade
Russia.

If he won, as everyone expected, he would control Europe, and
Great Britain would be isolated. It was no time for her to be
involved in an American war.

At first, our seamen proved better than the British. After we
won a battle on Lake Erie in 1813, the American commander, Oliver
Hazard Perry, sent the message, "We have met the enemy and they are ours."

However, the weight of the British navy beat down our ships eventually.
New England, hard-hit by a tightening blockade, threatened secession.

Meanwhile, Napoleon was beaten in Russia and in 1814 was forced
to abdicate. Great Britain now turned its attention to the United
States, launching a three-pronged attack.

The northern prong was to come down Lake Champlain toward New
York and seize parts of New England.

The southern prong was to go up the Mississippi, take New
Orleans and paralyze the west.

The central prong was to head for the mid-Atlantic states and
then attack Baltimore, the greatest port south of New York. If
Baltimore was taken, the nation, which still hugged the Atlantic coast,
could be split in two. The fate of the United States, then, rested to a large
extent on the success or failure of the central prong.

The British reached the American coast, and on August 24, 1814,
took Washington, D.C. Then they moved up the Chesapeake Bay toward
Baltimore.

On September 12, they arrived and found 1,000 men in Fort
McHenry, whose guns controlled the harbor. If the British wished to take
Baltimore, they would have to take the fort.

On one of the British ships was an aged physician, William
Beanes, who had been arrested in Maryland and brought along as a prisoner.
Francis Scott Key, a lawyer and friend of the physician, had come to
the ship to negotiate his release.

The British captain was willing, but the two Americans would
have to wait. It was now the night of September 13, and the bombardment
of Fort McHenry was about to start.

As twilight deepened, Key and Beanes saw the American flag
flying over Fort McHenry. Through the night, they heard bombs bursting and
saw the red glare of rockets. They knew the fort was resisting and the
American flag was still flying. But toward morning the bombardment
ceased, and a dread silence fell. Either Fort McHenry had surrendered and the
British flag flew above it, or the bombardment had failed and the
American flag still flew.

As dawn began to brighten the eastern sky, Key and Beanes
stared out at the fort, trying to see which flag flew over it. He and the
physician must have asked each other over and over, "Can you see the flag?"

After it was all finished, Key wrote a four stanza poem telling
the events of the night. Called "The Defense of Fort McHenry," it
was published in newspapers and swept the nation. Someone noted
that the words fit an old English tune called, "To Anacreon in Heaven"
-- a difficult melody with an uncomfortably large vocal range. For
obvious reasons, Key's work became known as "The Star Spangled Banner,"
and in 1931 Congress declared it the official anthem of the United States.

Now that you know the story, here are the words. Presumably,
the old doctor is speaking. This is what he asks Key:

Oh! 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 thro' the night that our flag was still there.
Oh! say, does that star-spangled banner yet wave,
O'er the land of the free and the home of the brave?

("Ramparts," in case you don't know, are the protective walls
or other elevations that surround a fort.) The first stanza asks a
question. The second gives an answer:

On the shore, dimly seen thro' the mist of the deep
Where the foe's haughty host in dread silence reposes,
What is that which the breeze, o'er the towering steep.
As it fitfully blows, half conceals, half discloses?
Now it catches the gleam of the morning's first beam,
In full glory reflected, now shines on the stream
'Tis the star-spangled banner. Oh! long may it wave
O'er the land of the free and the home of the brave!

The towering steep" is again, the ramparts. The bombardment
has failed, and the British can do nothing more but sail away, their
mission a failure.

In the third stanza I feel Key allows himself to gloat
over the American triumph. In the aftermath of the bombardment, Key
probably was in no mood to act otherwise? During World War I when the
British were our Staunchest allies, this third stanza was not sung. However,
I know it, so here it is:

And where is that band who so vauntingly swore
That the havoc of war and the battle's confusion
A home and a country should leave us no more?
Their blood has washed out their foul footstep's pollution.
No refuge could save the hireling and slave
From the terror of flight, or the gloom of the grave,
And the star-spangled banner in triumph doth wave
O'er the land of the free and the home of the brave.

The fourth stanza, a pious hope for the future, should be sung
more slowly than the other three and with even deeper feeling):

Oh! thus be it ever, when freemen shall stand
Between their loved homes and the war's desolation,
Blest with victory and peace, may the Heaven - rescued land
Praise the Power that hath made and preserved us a nation.
Then conquer we must, for our cause is just,
And this be our motto --"In God is our trust."
And the star-spangled banner in triumph doth wave
O'er the land of the free and the home of the brave.

I hope you will look at the national anthem with new eyes.
Listen to it, the next time you have a chance, with new ears. Pay
attention to the words. And don't let them ever take it away ... not even
one word of it.

OH! and by the way:
IT'S ALWAYS TO BE SUNG IN ENGLISH!

May we who are brave, stand strong and protect our liberties
against all foes and not ever forget those who have given their all
and still are.
__________________

__________________
Steve & Sherri
2002 Winnebago Journey DL 39QD
Zimectrin is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-13-2007, 06:25 AM   #3
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Thank you!!!
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2016 Jayco White Hawk 27dsrl
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