Raise the White Flag

Raise the White Flag (HM1JF9)

Location: Alexandria, VA 22314
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Country: United States of America
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N 38° 48.223', W 77° 2.382'

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Star-Spangled Banner National Historic Trail

— War of 1812 —

In the early 1800s Alexandria was part of the District of Columbia and an important port with its own militia. In summer 1814, though, Alexandria's militia had been sent to defend Maryland from the British invasion. So on August 28, four days after the British burned Washington's most important federal buildings, defenseless Alexandrians saw enemy warships approaching up the Potomac River. To prevent similar destruction, Alexandria Mayor Charles Simms and members of his "vigilance committee" rowed out with a white flag of surrender.

"(As) there be no sufficient force, on our part, to oppose (the British), with any reasonable prospect of success, (you) should appoint a committee to carry a flag to the...enemy...and procure the best terms for the safety of persons, houses, and property." Alexandria vigilance committee's recommendation to the city's Common Council.

In the summer of 1814 the United States had been at war with Great Britain for two years. Battlefronts had erupted from the Great Lakes to the Gulf of Mexico. On August 24, following their victory over the Americans at the Battle of Bladensburg, Maryland, British troops marched on Washington with devastating results.

The Star-Spangled Banner National Historic Trail reveals sites of War of 1812 in Washington, DC, Virginia, and Maryland. Visit ChesapeakeExplorerApp.com or download the Chesapeake Explorer app.

(upper center) HMS Euryalus, commanded by Captain Charles Napier (above), was one of seven British vessels carrying a total of 128 guns that sailed up the Potomac to Alexandria. Oil by Thomas Musgrave Fox, National Maritime Museum (UK)
(lower center) Oil by Geoff Hunt, National Maritime Museum (UK)
HM NumberHM1JF9
Placed ByNational Park Service, U.S. Department of the Interior
Marker ConditionNo reports yet
Date Added Thursday, March 5th, 2015 at 1:01pm PST -08:00
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Locationbig map
UTM (WGS84 Datum)18S E 322883 N 4296971
Decimal Degrees38.80371667, -77.03970000
Degrees and Decimal MinutesN 38° 48.223', W 77° 2.382'
Degrees, Minutes and Seconds38° 48' 13.38" N, 77° 2' 22.92" W
Driving DirectionsGoogle Maps
Area Code(s)202, 703, 571
Which side of the road?Marker is on the right when traveling North
Closest Postal AddressAt or near 130-198 Strand St, Alexandria VA 22314, US
Alternative Maps Google Maps, MapQuest, Bing Maps, Yahoo Maps, MSR Maps, OpenCycleMap, MyTopo Maps, OpenStreetMap

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