Greetings from Fort McHenry National Monument & Historic Shrine

As someone who spent years working in Historic Preservation, it’s important to me to teach my daughter why that preservation matters–even if she’s too young to understand yet.

The NPS Centennial, and a recent viewing of the IMAX National Parks Adventure, inspired me to begin now. To celebrate the NPS100, my daughter and I bought a Parks Passports, with a goal of getting 100 stamps by the end of the year.

Fort McHenry was the National Park that I grew up with. Its historic significance, both to our city and our nation, made it the perfect park to begin our tour.

At Fort McHenry she got to see cannons, barracks, battle plans, and even the original cross bar that held up the Star Spangled Banner. And while it obviously means more to me right now than it does to her, my hope is that in the future, she’ll look at those passport stamps and know that her dad introduced her to history.


Fort McHenry National Monument & Historic Shrine

During the War of 1812, British forces sailed to Baltimore, Maryland, intent on attacking the city. But Baltimore was defended by Fort McHenry — a star-shaped fort perfectly situated on the Baltimore Harbor. On the morning of September 13, 1814, the British navy attacked the fort for 25 hours. Francis Scott Key witnessed the bombardment from a ship in Baltimore harbor and expressed his gratitude and relief at the victory in a poem that became "The Star-Spangled Banner."

State(s): Maryland

Established: 1925

“if we're blind to our history, how can we ever expect to clearly see our future? ”

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