Senator Ben Cardin (D-MD) today joined U.S. Congressman John Sarbanes (MD-3), officials from the National Park Service (NPS) and Maryland state officials to launch the Star-Spangled Banner National Historic Trail at a ceremony in Baltimore's historic Fell's Point. Partners from all nine regions along the trail were recognized for their hard work to develop the trail in their local areas.
"The launch of the Star Spangled Banner Trail is a key part of our nation's bicentennial celebration of the War of 1812," said Senator Cardin. "The trail will provide Marylanders and visitors with a way to access and appreciate the sites engaged in our nation's Second War of Independence. Highlighted by kiosks, wayside signs, and highway markers, the trail offers a unique combination of land and water-based sites and gives visitors a unique understanding of Maryland's role in the war that helped shaped our nation."
In 1999, then-Congressman Cardin introduced legislation directing the National Park Service to conduct a study of the feasibility of designating routes used by the British and Americans during the Chesapeake Campaign of the War of 1812 as a National Historic Trail. The study was completed in 2004 and recommended that the proposed Star-Spangled Banner Trail be established by Congress.
In early 2007, Senator Cardin joined with Congressman Sarbanes in introducing legislation to establish the Star-Spangled Banner and War of 1812 National Historic Trail. The bill was signed into law by President Bush on May 8, 2008.
The Star-Spangled Banner National Historic Trail commemorates the War of 1812 and its legacy in the Chesapeake region. More than 560 miles of land and water routes in Maryland, Virginia, and the District of Columbia follow movements of British and American troops during a period of political and social turmoil that forever changed a young democratic nation. For more information, visit www.starspangledtrail.net.