May 17, 2007


Susan Sullam: 410-962-4436

WASHINGTON - U.S. Senator Benjamin L. Cardin's bill to create a special Commission to plan, coordinate and facilitate the bicentennial celebration of the War of 1812 today passed the Senate Judiciary Committee.

The legislation calls for creating a Star-Spangled Banner and War of 1812 Bicentennial Commission to commemorate the historic events associated with the War of 1812. Senator Cardin also has introduced legislation to officially designate the Star-Spangled Banner Trail as a National Historic Trail in recognition of some the most historic sites from the War of 1812 in Maryland, Virginia and the District of Columbia.

"The War of 1812 is often referred to as the Second American Revolution," said Senator Cardin. "The War of 1812 and the defense of Ft. McHenry are moments of pride for Maryland, and they are important events in our nation's history. As Marylanders, we have a duty and obligation to lead the national celebration of the historic events surrounding the War of 1812."

In 1999, as a Congressman, Mr. 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. The study also recommended that a War of 1812 Bicentennial Commission be created to coordinate the 200th anniversary celebration of the War of 1812.

U.S. Rep. John Sarbanes also has introduced similar legislation in the U.S. House of Representatives.