Via LA Times:

The Francis Scott Key monument in San Francisco’s Golden Gate Park is one of those old-fashioned pieces of public art that, shall we say, lays it on thick. It is imposing and fussy, a 52-foot-tall chunk of travertine and marble loaded up with classical trimmings. There’s a fluted colonnade, four eagles with majestically fanned-out wings, swags and stars, and, at the very top of the big pile, the figure of Columbia, the traditional female personification of the United States, clutching an American flag.

In the center of the monument is the main attraction, a bronze statue of Key, the Washington, D.C., lawyer who, 206 years ago, wrote the words to “The Star-Spangled Banner” to commemorate the American victory in the Battle of Baltimore, in the War of 1812. Key is captured in a heroic pose: enthroned on a big chair with pen in hand, looking every inch the sort of poetaster who would come up with lines like “O’er the ramparts we watched / Were so gallantly streaming.”

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