War of 1812

A lithograph of the Battle of New Orleans, circa 1890

The 10 Things You Didn’t Know About the War of 1812

Why did the country really go to war against the British? Which American icon came out of the forgotten war?

As the British neared the White House, Dolley Madison directed that a Gilbert Stuart portrait of George Washington be removed.

When Dolley Madison Took Command of the White House

It is thanks to the first lady that the famous Stuart painting of George Washington survived the British army's invasion of D.C. in August 1814

After almost two centuries, the flag's frail state became plain.  The icon's new high-tech home will protect it from exposure to bright light, humidity and ambient pollution.

Star-Spangled Banner Back on Display

After a decade’s conservation, the flag that inspired the National Anthem returns to its place of honor on the National Mall

A conservator works on the Star-Spangled Banner in 1914.

The Story Behind the Star Spangled Banner

How the flag that flew proudly over Fort McHenry inspired an anthem and made its way to the Smithsonian

Francis Scott Key looks out on the namesake of his poem, the Star-Spangled Banner.

Francis Scott Key, the Reluctant Patriot

The Washington lawyer was an unlikely candidate to write the national anthem; he was against America’s entry into the War of 1812 from the outset


The Dying Tecumseh and the Birth of a Legend

A sculpture in the Smithsonian collection reveals much about how the Indians of the West were viewed in the early ages of the United States

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