Francis Scott Key
Francis Scott Key (August 1, 1779 – January 11, 1843) was an American lawyer, author, and amateur poet from Frederick, Maryland, best known as the author of the text of the U.S. national anthem, "The Star-Spangled Banner". Key observed the British bombardment of Fort McHenry in 1814 during the War of 1812. He was inspired upon seeing the American flag still flying over the fort at dawn and wrote the poem "Defence of Fort M'Henry"; it was published within a week with the suggested tune of the popular song "To Anacreon in Heaven". The song with Key's lyrics became known as "The Star-Spangled Banner" and slowly gained in popularity as an unofficial anthem, finally achieving official status more than a century later under President Herbert Hoover as the national anthem.
Key was a lawyer in Maryland and Washington, D.C. for four decades and worked on important cases, including the Burr conspiracy trial, and he argued numerous times before the Supreme Court. He was nominated for District Attorney for the District of Columbia by President Andrew Jackson, where he served from 1833 to 1841. Key was a devout Episcopalian.
Key owned slaves from 1800, during which time abolitionists ridiculed his words, claiming that America was more like the "Land of the Free and Home of the Oppressed". As District Attorney, he suppressed abolitionists, and in 1836 lost a case against Reuben Crandall where he accused the defendant's abolitionist publications of instigating slaves to rebel. He was also a leader of the American Colonization Society which sent freed slaves to Africa. He freed some of his slaves in the 1830s, paying one ex-slave as his farm foreman to supervise his other slaves. He publicly criticized slavery and gave free legal representation to some slaves seeking freedom, but he also represented owners of runaway slaves. At the time of his death he owned eight slaves.
= Recordings are available for online listening.
= Recordings were issued from this master. No recordings issued from other masters.
Recordings (Results 1-25 of 49 records)
|Company||Matrix No.||Size||First Recording Date||Title||Primary Performer||Description||Role||Audio|
|Berliner||355||7-in.||Before 1895||The star spangled banner||Soprano vocalist(s) (unidentified; Berliner Gramophone Records)||Female vocal solo||author|
|Berliner||4258||7-in.||June 1897-Apr. 1898||The star spangled banner||Artists vary||Male vocal quartet||author|
|Victor||B-1907||10-in.||11/7/1904||The star spangled banner||Frank C. Stanley||Male vocal solo, with orchestra||author|
|Victor||C-1907||12-in.||11/7/1904||The star spangled banner||Frank C. Stanley||Male vocal solo, with orchestra||author|
|Victor||E-1907||8-in.||2/13/1906||The star spangled banner||Frank C. Stanley||Male vocal solo, with orchestra||author|
|Victor||C-2421||12-in.||3/28/1905||Two American patriotic airs||Emma Eames||Soprano vocal solo, with piano||author|
|Victor||C-4833||12-in.||9/24/1907||The star spangled banner||Ellen Beach Yaw||Soprano vocal solo, with orchestra||author|
|Victor||B-6221||10-in.||5/21/1908||The star spangled banner||Emilio de Gogorza||Baritone vocal solo, with band and chorus||author|
|Victor||C-8272||12-in.||10/4/1909||Star spangled banner||Geraldine Farrar||Soprano vocal solo, with chorus and orchestra||author|
|Victor||B-8272||10-in.||5/25/1916||Star spangled banner||Geraldine Farrar||Soprano vocal solo, with orchestra||author|
|Victor||BVE-14570||10-in.||3/30/1928||The star spangled banner||Victor Mixed Chorus||Vocal chorus, with orchestra||author|
|Victor||B-14570||10-in.||3/13/1914||The star spangled banner||Victor Mixed Chorus||Chorus, with orchestra||author|
|Victor||B-15005||10-in.||6/24/1914||The star spangled banner||Margaret Romaine||Female vocal solo, with orchestra||author|
|Victor||B-19534||10-in.||3/29/1917||The star spangled banner||John McCormack||Tenor vocal solo, with vocal chorus and orchestra||author|
|Victor||B-20099||10-in.||6/27/1917||The star spangled banner||Elizabeth Spencer||Female vocal solo, with orchestra||author|
|Victor||B-20316||10-in.||7/3/1917||The star spangled banner||Reinald Werrenrath||Male vocal solo, with orchestra||author|
|Victor||B-20331||10-in.||7/10/1917||The star spangled banner||Louise Homer||Contralto vocal solo, with mixed vocal quartet and orchestra||author|
|Victor||B-20332||10-in.||7/10/1917||The star spangled banner||Louise Homer||Contralto vocal solo, with orchestra||author|
|Victor||C-21944||12-in.||6/4/1918||The star spangled banner||Wilfred Glenn||Male vocal solo, with orchestra||author|
|Victor||B-22193||10-in.||8/5/1918||Star spangled banner||František A. Pangrác||Male vocal solo, with orchestra||author|
|Victor||CVE-49530||12-in.||1/12/1929||Dedication of the Cascade Tunnel||Graham McNamee ; Ernestine Schumann-Heink||Radio broadcast : Contralto vocal solo, with piano||author|
|Victor||BS-023914||10-in.||6/27/1938||The star spangled banner||Boston Pops Orchestra ; Arthur Fiedler||Orchestra||author|
|Victor||BS-035320||10-in.||3/21/1939||The star spangled banner||Kate Smith||Female vocal solo, with mixed vocal chorus and orchestra||author|
|Victor||BS-048770||10-in.||4/11/1940||The star spangled banner||Emile Coté ; Victor Mixed Chorus||Mixed vocal chorus, with organ||author|
|Victor||BS-068668||10-in.||12/17/1941||The star spangled banner||Lucy Monroe ; Charles O'Connell||Female vocal solo, with orchestra||author|
Discography of American Historical Recordings, s.v. "Key, Francis Scott," accessed November 29, 2023, https://adp.library.ucsb.edu/names/102073.
Key, Francis Scott. (2023). In Discography of American Historical Recordings. Retrieved November 29, 2023, from https://adp.library.ucsb.edu/names/102073.
"Key, Francis Scott." Discography of American Historical Recordings. UC Santa Barbara Library, 2023. Web. 29 November 2023.
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