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Who wrote the words of the U.S. national anthem?

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Quick Answer

Francis Scott Key wrote a poem on September 13, 1814, during the Battle of Baltimore that eventually became known as “The Star-Spangled Banner.” This patriotic song was adopted as the U.S. national anthem by President Herbert Hoover.

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Full Answer

Key was born on August 1, 1779, in Frederick County, Maryland. He became an attorney in Washington, D.C., as an adult. Key volunteered to go to Baltimore on a prisoner-exchange mission. It was during this undertaking that the lawyer wrote the patriotic poem that would later become the U.S. national anthem. Key died on January 11, 1843, at the age of 63 after contracting pleurisy.

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