Burgundy City for By the summer of 1814, the United States had scored two notable retaliatory victories at the Battles of York in Canada (April, 1813) and Plattsburgh in New York (August, 1814). But by that time, the British had opened a new front on the Chesapeake Bay with a dramatic invasion of Washington, D.C. The British army set fire to much of the city, including the capitol and the executive mansion, before marching toward Baltimore. Forts McHenry and Covington managed to keep the British Navy at bay. It was while viewing the heavy bombardment of Fort McHenry that Francis Scott Key penned the words to the Star-Spangled Banner. The naval war went much better for the United States, an irony since the British Navy was the world’s best and thought to be invincible. Burgundy City 2016.