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War of 1812
Transcript of War of 1812
-Americans thought the Loyalists that immigrated to Canada would come back to their home country without much persuasive effort (boy were they wrong! some settlers switched their allegiance back, but most were building lives in Canada that they were not ready to give up)
*Many Americans didn't want war though, the New England States and the Eastern States were against war mostly because of trade and previously decided negotiations
*Many natives around the Great Lakes DID want war because war would help them achieve an alliance with Britain (they decided Britain was the lesser of the two evils U.S. or Britain) and so they could take back land stolen by the Americans
-After years of conflict between U.S. and the Aboriginal People, Americans were very afraid of native warfare and all troops tried to avoid it
-The Battle of Bladensburg was so easily won by the British that they were bold enough to march right into Washington and burn down public buildings (it was revenge for taking over and burning down York)
Hardships of the War
The war raged on. Major-General Sir Isaac Brock played a major role in the war of 1812 for "Canada". Brock was charismatic, a good negotiator and a skilled military strategist; coming up with many plans that led to battles being easily won with few casualties.
The war of 1812 was started when the United States of America didn't get the land they were promised by Britain. Let's go back a bit.
1763- the first "Treaty of Paris" was signed by France, Britain and Spain (this document gave Quebec from France to Britain) to end the Seven Years War
1783- the second "Treaty of Paris" was signed (acknowledged U.S.A.'s independence from Britain)
*this treaty stated that British North America was to give America the Ohio Valley in exchange for compensating the American Loyalists who had previously immigrated to "Canada" for land and property
1786-1791- Aboriginal Peoples created a confederation led by Tecumseh, Joseph Brant and other leaders in order to take back land that was taken by settlers
1793- no compensation or land had been given by either Britain or U.S.
1794- America defeated Aboriginal Confederacy (Battle of Fallen Timbers), with new confidence they decided they could take on Britain and claim the land they were promised
*Britain was at war with France in Europe so they didn't want war with the U.s. in North America (they started to negotiate:)
*Jay's Treaty- Britain agreed to surrender the western Ohio area to the U.S. by 1796
1803-1809- again British at war with French (they established trade blockades which interfered with U.S. trading (mad :( )
-Aboriginals mad at being forced off land (by Americans) and being converted (so sided with British)
June 17, 1812- Britain announced the decision discontinue the Orders-in-Council that blocked the U.S. trade and violated their waters because they were afraid of the Americans threat of war
War of 1812
The Start of the War
*news took 6-8 weeks to sail across the Atlantic ocean from Britain to British North America
June 18, 1812- the United States unaware that Britain had "surrendered" to their requests, declared war on Britain (the day after!)
*they thought British North America could be won easily and quickly because of sheer numbers, but... they did not account for the Canadian spirit :D (8,000,000 people in America= 500,000 people in British North America)
-each coat weighed at least 2.5kg (more when wet)
-troops sometimes had to march through he night, the cold, swamps, etc.
-rations were small (women got only 1/2 a ration, children 1/4)
-even though the British had smaller numbers, they fought fiercely and the number of battles won was "tie-like"
-war is always scary, especially if you are the one shooting the gun and being shot at
Tecumseh was another key role in British North America's win over the Americans. He established an alliance between Aboriginal Peoples and the British and personally met with Brock to discuss and plan attacks (without the native people British North America would not have won the war)
Laura Secord is made out to be a bigger hero than she really was, but she was helpful. She risked her life running to fort Beaver Dams on June 21, 1813 to warn of an approaching American attack (which she overheard while American soldiers stayed in her home. Because her family was loyal to Britain she felt she must warn the people of Beaver Dams).
Luckily, there were other British and natives in the area who could help because the American attack was 500 men and Beavers Dams had only 46 soldiers. The other British troops had the Americans ready to surrender before the men from fort Beaver Dams had even arrived.
After 32 months of fighting with the U.s. (during which the war with France had ended so Britain sent more soldiers) the War of 1812 (and 1813 and 1814) ended
*British North America won (supposedly...that's what us Canadians say) however, the U.S.A. believes they won (mostly because they won the last battle fought)
On December 24, 1814 the "Treaty of Ghent" was signed between Britain and the United States (this was a formal agreement to stop ALL fighting)
-of course don't forget the ocean gap so the Battle of New Orleans was fought after the armistice was signed anyway because the news hadn't arrived yet
Both British North Americans as well as Americans viewed the war as a victory even though nothing had changed. All land boundaries remained the same, the populations were relatively unchanged, etc.
The only people who really lost anything were the Aboriginal People. The people we wouldn't have wont he war without! After Tecumseh was killed (in the battle at Moraviantown) the Aboriginal coalition fell apart and settlers moved onto native land freely forcing them out.
Traitors: in both countries traitors were heavily prosecuted. Either hung, shot or forced out of the country.
1817- The Rush-Bagot Agreement was signed
-this agreement limited armed vessels on the Great Lakes to prevent an arms race between the two countries
-also, some border issues were straightened out
1818- the Convention of 1818 clarified the western border between British North America and the United States of America (boundary disagreement between New Brunswick and Maine wasn't settled until 1842)
Notes on the War
*most soldiers carried flintlock muskets called "Brown Bess" (they were inaccurate and took a long time to reload, but large groups of soldiers were bound to hit something)
*officers trained their troops to respond to whistle commands/ signals (such as: start firing, stop firing, march forward, retreat, the enemy is near, the enemy is within musket range, etc.)
*Sir Isaac Brock was very clever (so were other men, but he was in the spotlight), he would send people out with letters purposefully to get caught by the Americans who would read the letters which had fake information about how many troops were coming, etc. This tricked them into believing they didn't have enough men and many attacks were prevented. Also, Sir Isaac Brock made sure volunteer soldiers had proper military coats so they looked like trained soldiers to intimidate the Americans.