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Inquiry Question

Historical Context

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Illustration 1
Photo 1
Illustration 3
Photo 2
Photo 3
Illustration 4

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Visual Evidence

Illustration 2: The Battle of Baltimore

[Illustration 2] with link to larger version of image.(National Park Service.)

The British plan was for the navy, commanded by Vice Adm. Alexander Cochrane, and the army, commanded by Maj. Gen. Robert Ross, to join in attacking Baltimore. They could not do that until Fort McHenry surrendered, allowing the British ships to get into the harbor.

Questions for Illustration 2

1. Where did the British troops land? Where did they encounter the American forces? Look at the map carefully. What clues can you find to tell you what happened after that? Where were the British and Americans on September 13? Why do you think the British might have stopped where they did?

2. Find where an American sharpshooter killed General Ross. Ross was very popular with his troops. How do you think his death might have affected them?

3. Find the arrow indicating where the British tried to get around Fort McHenry to attack it from the side. Go back to Reading 1. How many of the places Major Armistead mentions in his dispatch can you find on the map? Armistead said that he thought none of the attackers would have survived if they had tried an attack like that during the daytime. Based on the map, do you think he was right?

4. Find the British bombardment fleet on the map. It was about two miles away from Fort McHenry. See if you can find some place that is two miles away from your school or home. How accurate do you think the guns on the British ships would be from two miles away? How well do you think the gunners could see what they were aiming at?

Click for a larger version of Illustration 2.

 

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National Park Service arrowhead with link to NPS website.