Key decided to set his piece to music, and borrowed the tune from a popular song called “To Anacreon in Heaven.” Not long after it was first published, people began referring to the piece as “The Star-Spangled Banner.” The song became an overnight success, and bands began playing it during public events and military occasions. In March of 1931, over a hundred years after Key wrote it, “The Star-Spangled Banner” became the official national anthem of the United States.
Do you know all of the words to the national anthem (including verses two, three, and four)? Today's a great day to refresh your memory. Happy National Anthem Day!