Date: June 7, 2013


  • John Fieseler, Executive Director, Tourism Council of Frederick County, 301-600-4041,
  • Michelle Kershner, Marketing & Communication Manager, Tourism Council of Frederick County, 301-600-4023,


The Frederick Visitor Center will host a book talk with Washington Post writer and author Steve Vogel on his new book, Through the Perilous Fight, on June 15

FREDERICK, MD - In a rousing account of one of the critical turning points in American history, Through the Perilous Fight tells the gripping story of the burning of Washington and the improbable last stand at Baltimore that helped save the nation and inspired its National Anthem.  Now, as part of the scheduled “Anthem & Author Reunited” activities in Frederick, Maryland that will bring the “Star-Spangled Banner” manuscript to Frederick, Steve Vogel will speak about his new book at the Frederick Visitor Center on Saturday, June 15th.  The program will begin at 1:30 p.m.

In the summer of 1814, the United States of America teetered on the brink of disaster. The outcome of that “perilous fight” would help change the outcome of the war—and with it, the fate of the fledgling American republic.  In a fast-paced, character-driven narrative, Vogel tells the story of this titanic struggle from the perspective of both sides. Like an epic novel, Through the Perilous Fight abounds with heroes, villains, and astounding feats of derring-do.  One of the leading characters is lawyer Francis Scott Key, whose mission to negotiate the release of an American prisoner places him on a British ship during the climactic Battle for Baltimore.  The culmination is the creation of one of the most enduring compositions in the annals of patriotic song: “The Star-Spangled Banner.”

Like Pearl Harbor or 9/11, the burning of Washington was a devastating national tragedy that ultimately united America and renewed its sense of purpose. Through the Perilous Fight combines bravura storytelling with brilliantly rendered character sketches to recreate the thrilling six-week period when Americans rallied from the ashes to overcome their oldest adversary—and win themselves a new birth of freedom.


Vogel is author of The Pentagon and a veteran national reporter for The Washington Post. He has written extensively about military affairs and the treatment of veterans from the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq. His reporting on the war in Afghanistan was part of a package of Washington Post stories selected as a finalist for the 2002 Pulitzer Prize. Vogel covered the September 11 terrorist attack on the Pentagon, and its subsequent reconstruction. Vogel covered the war in Iraq and the first Gulf War, as well as U.S. military operations in Rwanda, Somalia, and the Balkans. A graduate of the College of William and Mary, he received a master’s degree in international public policy from Johns Hopkins University’s School of Advanced International Studies.


“The War of 1812 remains one of the most important and least appreciated events in American history. In these engaging pages, Steve Vogel does much to rectify that, telling the story of a critical episode of the conflict with eloquence and insight,” states Jon Meacham, Pulitzer Prize-winning author of Thomas Jefferson: The Art of Power.


The Frederick Visitor Center is located at 151 S. East Street in Frederick, Maryland.  Books will be available for purchase and signing at the event.  The event is hosted by the Tourism Council of Frederick County as part of the “Anthem & Author Reunited” commemoration. For more information, including a full list of activities, visit