Re: Key's boat
- I think I remember some discussion about the name of the boat F. S. Key was
on when he was watching out for the flag over Ft. McHenry. Well, the book I
just read,(see review) "The Darkest Day: 1814" by Charles Muller page
199-200 has something on point:
"And because TONNANT, overcrowded with military personnel, had no space for
visitors, he [Adm. Cochrane] sent the three Americans [Dr. Beanes, Key and
Col. Skinner] on board the frigate SUPRISE, captained by Cochrane's son
Thomas. When on reaching Baltimore, TONNANT could not ascend the shallow
Patapsco River after Ross went ashore to his death on North Point, Cochrane
carried his flag over to SUPRISE in order to command the bombardment of
fort McHenry-and shifted the Americans back on board their own cartel
vessel, still under marine gaurd. Thus behind the advanced line of
bomb-ketches, Francis Scott Key and Dr. William Beans and Col. John Stuart
Skinner on 13 September watched the enemy attack Ft. McHenry."
The author's notes for this chapter elaborate: "In the Baltimore Sun of 5
January 1919 President James E. Hancock of the Society of the War of 1812
in Maryland, whose great-grandfather and grandfather saw the British fleet
in the Patapsco, puts Key, Beanes, and Skinner on an American navy dispatch
boat 'of the old pilot boat construction.' The story that Key saw the
waving Star Spangled Banner from Great Britian's MINDEN came into
exisitance, Mr. Hancock points out, fifty years after the defense of Ft.
McHenry. At the time of the bombardment, according to the Admiralty, MINDEN
sailed with the British East India squadron."
That clears that up!
Member/ 93rd Sutherland Highland Regiment of Foot L.H.U.