"The Star-Spangled Banner," the national anthem of the United States of America. He was born and raised in western Maryland. He became a lawyer, first in Frederick and then in what is now the Georgetown section of Washington, D.C. During the War of 1812, when it seemed likely that British forces would overtake Baltimore, he travelled to Fort McHenry in September of 1814 to negotiate the release of Dr. William Beanes, who was being held captive by the British. He succeeded in getting Beanes released, but was unable to leave, due to the British bombardment of the fort. During the bombardment he was aboard a ship, some eight miles away, watching as the British shelled Fort McHenry. When the smoke cleared the next morning, he was able to see the U.S. flag still flying at the fort (the specially-made flag was 30 feet high and 42 feet wide). Inspired by the sight, he scribbled down a few poetic lines, which he later enhanced at a hotel in Baltimore. (1815) Battle between the U.S. and Britain during the War of 1812. Late in 1814 a British fleet of more than 50 ships commanded by Gen. Edward Pakenham (1778 - 1815) sailed into the Gulf of Mexico and prepared to attack New Orleans. Gen. Andrew Jackson, commander of the U.S. Army of the Southwest, which consisted chiefly of militiamen and volunteers, fought the British regulars who stormed their position on Jan. 8, 1815. His troops were so effectively entrenched behind earthworks and the British troops so exposed that the fighting was brief, ending in a decisive U.S. victory, a British withdrawal, and the death of Gen. Pakenham. The battle was without military value, since the Treaty of Ghent ending the war had been signed in December, but the news had been slow to arrive. The victory nevertheless raised national morale, enhancing Jackson's reputation as a hero and preparing his way to the presidency. was the first major federal response to the growing demand in the early nineteenth century for surfaced roads to facilitate westward travel. It ultimately ran from Baltimore, Maryland, through Pennsylvania, Virginia, Ohio, and Indiana, to Illinois. In 1806 Congress approved the route for the first section, largely along an Indian trail; it ran westward from the end of the Baltimore Turnpike in Cumberland, Maryland, to Wheeling, in western Virginia, where travelers could board ships on the Ohio River. Planning began in 1806, but contracts were not granted until 1811, and because of delays associated with the War of 1812, construction did not begin until 1815. The road reached Wheeling in 1818. After the War of 1812, an Anglo‐American arms race threatened the peace. Fearing U.S. encroachments, Canada stationed warships on the Great Lakes and demanded that Great Britain follow suit. America responded with its own vessels. Britain preferred, however, to focus its naval energies on the high seas, while America—confident that it could construct ships quickly if crisis loomed—wished to avoid an expensive naval race. A mutual disarmament treaty therefore appealed to both nations. In notes exchanged between British minister Charles Bagot and Acting Secretary of State Richard Rush, America and Britain pledged to maintain no more than one ship each on Lakes Champlain and Ontario, and only two on the remaining Great Lakes. This accord neither completely nor immediately disarmed the lakes, nor did it address land forces; but it did constitute the first qualitative disarmament treaty in history. No more warships were introduced, the Anglo‐American "era of good feelings" continued, and tensions eased along the border. Responding to war threats in 1940, both Canada and the United States modified Rush‐Bagot to permit naval construction and training.