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The War of 1812

Essay by review  •  February 26, 2011  •  Essay  •  635 Words (3 Pages)  •  825 Views

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The War of 1812, also known as the second American war for independence (Bailey pg. 233) was fought between the meager forces of the American government and the supreme power of Great Britain. The war ended in 1815 with the treaty of Ghent, this treaty wasn't really a treaty but an armistice or surrender of arms. The American military suffered from defeat after defeat during the beginning of the war, these loses could be contributed to by the lack of citizen support in the time of war, also the lack in size and power of the American military. These factors validate the statement that the War of 1812 was the worst fought American war. At the beginning of the war America was fighting with Great Britain for a number of grievances such as, forceful impressments of sailors, and seizure of American cargos, plus the extraction of British troops from the Ohio valley which was previously promised in two former treaties, Jays treaty and the Treaty of Paris. The regression of grievances was just a stepping stone for American ambition; after the start of the war Americans thought, "Wouldn't it be great if we could add Canada and Spanish Florida to our ever expanding boundaries?" However the northern merchants were afraid of the deletion of trade options with Britain because of the war. The southern farmers were also against the war because Britain was there main purchaser of cotton and indigo. On the other hand there were the backcountry farmers who needed more room to expand there farms or find better soil for crops who wanted to the war to expand there expansion areas. Support also came from the deep southern farmers who wanted Florida for there own. The ideas between both of these groups created political disunity between the states, making them quarrel among themselves weakening the national government. As we travel back a little in time we come to Jefferson's administration, he believed in a week national government which also meant a week army. It is common sense that a week army can't defend a nation of mass proportions against a large army. Since the American army had been reduced by the Anti Federalist presidents, the army being the size it was just couldn't withstand such massive odds against it. The one strong part of the military wasn't the Army it was the Navy. It was well known that Britain had the best Navy in the world, for the simple knowledge that if you live on an island an invasion force isn't very good

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