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The National Music of America. 203
In a paper read before the Pennsylvania Historical Society, in 1867, Col. John L. Warner thus accurately describes the events connected with the first singing of the song to its present melody, by Ferd. Durang :
"' The Star-spangled Banner' was first sung when fresh from the press, in a small one-story frame house, long occupied as a tavern by the Widow Ber-ling, next to the Holliday St. Theatre, but then kept by a Capt. MacCauley, a house where players ' most did congregate' to prepare for the daily military drill, every man being at that time a soldier. There came also Capt. Benjamin Edes, of the 27th regiment, Captains Long and Warner, of the 39th regiment, and Major Frailey. Warner was a silversmith of good repute in the neighbourhood. When a number of the young defenders of the monumental city was assembled, Capts. Edes and Warner called the group to order to listen to the patriotic song which Capt. Edes had just struck off at his press. He then read it aloud to the volunteers assembled, who greeted each verse with hearty shouts.
" It was suggested that it should be sung; but who was there could sing it? The task was assigned to Ferdinand Durang, one of the group, and who was known to be a vocalist. The old air, « To Anacreon in Heaven] had been adapted to it by the author, and