Francis Scott Key

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American lawyer, amateur poet. Born 1780, died 1843. During the War of 1812, Key was detained on a British ship during the battle for Fort McHenry in Baltimore, Maryland. Upon seeing the US flag still flying at dawn, he was inspired to write a poem celebrating the American victory. His poem was later set to music as The Star-Spangled Banner, and was adopted as the American national anthem in 1931.