Feb 04, 2016 - Sale 2404

Sale 2404 - Lot 276

Price Realized: $ 7,000
?Final Price Realized includes Buyer’s Premium added to Hammer Price
Estimate: $ 1,200 - $ 1,800
EARLY BROADSIDE PRINTING OF THE STAR-SPANGLED BANNER (WAR OF 1812.) [Key, Francis Scott.] Defence of Fort M'Henry. Letterpress handbill, 8 1/2 x 5 1/2 inches; three pieces of clear tape in margins, minor folds and foxing; untrimmed; two contemporary pencil signatures of "Sam Hays" in lower margin. Np: "For sale at the office of the Chronicle," [1814]

Additional Details

This broadside printing of our national anthem is undated, but was very likely issued in the weeks after Key first set the words to paper, watching the bombardment of Fort McHenry in Baltimore on 14 September 1814. Later printings generally used Key's name, as well as the modern title, "The Star-Spangled Banner."
This handbill may have issued by the Independent Chronicle of Boston, published by Adams & Rhoades, which had also published the poem in their 3 October 1814 issue with a different setting of type. They had published the first appearance of Key's related poem "When the Warrior Returns from the Battle Afar" in 1805. See Filby and Howard, Star-Spangled Books N1 and N17. However, at least four other newspapers called the Chronicle were being published in 1814, in Augusta, GA; Harrisburg, PA; Columbia, TN; and Franklintown, OH.
No other copy of this important early printing has been traced in OCLC, at the Library of Congress, the American Antiquarian Society, or elsewhere. This copy is discussed in a note to item B25 in Star-Spangled Books. Provenance: Parke-Bernet sale, 25 May 1971, lot 37 for $2,400.