Announcement

Collapse
No announcement yet.

War of 1812

Collapse
X
  • Filter
  • Time
  • Show
Clear All
new posts

  • #31
    This song, about the capture of Detroit, was written during the War of 1812:

    THE BOLD CANADIAN.

    Come all ye bold Canadians,
    I'd have you lend an ear
    Unto a short ditty
    Which will your spirits cheer
    Concerning an engagement
    We had at Detroit town,
    The pride of those Yankee boys
    So bravely we took down.

    Those Yankees did invade us,
    To kill and to destroy,
    And to distress our country,
    Our peace for to annoy.
    Our countrymen were filled
    With sorrow, grief and woe,
    To think that they should fall
    By such an unnatural foe.

    At length our brave commander,
    Sir Isaac Brock by name,
    Took shipping at Niagara,
    And unto York he came.
    Says he, ye valiant heroes,
    Will ye go along with me
    To fight those proud Yankees
    In the west of Canada?

    Our General sent a flag to them
    And thus to them did say:
    "Surrender up your garrison,
    "Or I'll fire on you this day."
    Those Yankee hearts began to ache
    Their blood it did run cold
    To see us marching forward
    So courageous and so bold.

    Their general sent a flag to us,
    For quarter he did call,
    Saying, "Stay your hand, brave British boys,
    "I fear you'll slay us all."
    "Our town, it is at your command,
    "Our garrison likewise."
    They brought their arms and grounded them
    Right down before our eyes.

    Now prisoners we made them,
    On board a ship they went,
    And from the town of Sandwich
    Unto Quebec were sent.


    The Times of London set this to "Yankee Doodle":

    Brother Ephraim sold his cow
    And bought himself a commission:
    And now he's gone to Canada
    To fi-ight for the nation.

    Brother Ephraim he's come back
    Prov'd an arrant coward,
    Afraid to fight the enemy,
    Afeared he be devour'd.


    Wolf.

    Comment


    • #32
      Originally posted by Damaso Marte View Post
      But to show how important the war once was (and to continue blathering on about 19th century American politics, a topic I love dearly), I will discuss the political career of Richard Mentor Johnson.

      Richard Mentor Johnson was serving in the US army during the War of 1812. He certainly fought at the Battle of the Thames, a battle in Ontario during which General William Henry Harrison defeated a joint British/Native American force, ending the British threat to the American northwest.

      Also certainly, this was the battle where the great Indian leader Tecumseh was killed.

      Many friends of Richard Mentor Johnson claimed afterwards that Richard Mentor Johnson was the one who killed Tecumseh, shooting him in the chest at point blank range during the battle. Indeed, there is actually an epic poem written about Richard Mentor Johnson. I have read the poem and it is terrible, it uses the phrase "rumpsey-dumpsy, rumpsey-dumpsy" between every line as filler.

      I don't think the truth about who killed Tecumseh at this battle will ever be known, but for the rest of the 19th century it is a topic of controversy, with Democratic-Republicans claiming it was Richard Mentor Johnson and members of other parties saying it was not.

      What happened to Richard Mentor Johnson? He was immediately elected to Congress. He later became a Senator. Finally, he served as Vice President from 1837 - 1841.

      What is remarkable is that Richard Mentor Johnson is not the kind of person who you would think would have a successful political career in 19th century America, and in the 19th century American south no less (he was from Kentucky). You see, Richard Mentor Johnson was an outspoken advocate of raising salaries for members of Congress, while serving in Congress. He is widely suspected of being an atheist. He lives in an open relationship with a former slave, and has several mixed-race children by her, which he openly acknowledges and raises as his own children. I don't believe they ever marry. Even openly living in such an unmarried arrangement with a white woman would have generally been a scandal back then.

      However, the glory of killing Tecumseh overcomes all of these things, and he continues to advance in politics over the 1820's and 1830's. The campaign slogan is always "Rumpsey-Dumpsey, Rumpsey-Dumpsey, Colonel Johnson killed Tecumseh".
      Hello Demaso

      Good to meet you.

      Thanks for your interesting posts about the War of 1812, which happens to be my area of expertise when I am not a Ripperologist. I have also written this post once before then lost it, so hopefully this time it will stick. Grrrrrrrrr.

      A piece of trivia for you is that as a congressman Richard M. Johnson chaired the Congressional Committee of Inquiry into the capture of Washington.

      Were the Americans trying to liberate Canada, as you claim? That is unclear. For practical purposes, to attack Canada was the main way that the Americans could fight the British. Leading U.S. historian of the war Donald R. Hickey maintains that if the U.S. had captured Canada the Madison administration would have used it in the peace negotiations not kept hold of it. Uowever, I think that Manifest Destiny shows the Americans would have kept Canada, but that's just my opinion.

      Of course the Americans burned the public buildings of not Toronto in April 1813 but York, the then capital of Upper Canada. It is sometimes erroneously said that the British burned the public buildings of Washington D.C. in retaliation the following year. But there's nothing in the British correspondence to show that was their intent. They spoke of other American infractions on the frontier, such as the burning of Newark (later Niagara-on-the-Lake) but not York.

      The British Army that captured Washington on August 24, 1814 didn't come down from the north (i.e, Canada) as you state. They came from Europe -- the army under Major General Robert Ross left the Garonne in southern France at the end of May.

      Yes impressment did end after the war but the reason was not to do with the War of 1812 but because the war with Napoleon was over with the deposed emperor being sent into his second exile on St. Helena.

      Andrew Jackson was a general at the time of the Battle of New Orleans not a colonel.

      I don't know where you live but I have organized a War of 1812 Symposium to take place in Baltimore on Saturday, October 22. Email me at editor1812@yahoo.com if you are interested.

      Best regards

      Chris

      **********************

      Christopher T. George,
      Author, Terror on the Chesapeake: The War of 1812 on the Bay
      Co-author (with Dr. John McCavitt), The Man Who Captured Washington:
      Major General Robert Ross and the War of 1812
      now available
      from Amazon at http://tinyurl.com/p6bsvze - hear interview at
      http://historyauthor.com/2016/03/man...ed-washington/
      Last edited by ChrisGeorge; 10-03-2016, 02:50 PM.
      Christopher T. George
      Organizer, RipperCon #JacktheRipper-#True Crime Conference
      just held in Baltimore, April 7-8, 2018.
      For information about RipperCon, go to http://rippercon.com/
      RipperCon 2018 talks can now be heard at http://www.casebook.org/podcast/

      Comment


      • #33
        Originally posted by ChrisGeorge View Post
        Hello Demaso

        Good to meet you.

        Thanks for your interesting posts about the War of 1812, which happens to be my area of expertise when I am not a Ripperologist. I have also written this post once before then lost it, so hopefully this time it will stick. Grrrrrrrrr.

        A piece of trivia for you is that as a congressman Richard M. Johnson chaired the Congressional Committee of Inquiry into the capture of Washington.

        Were the Americans trying to liberate Canada, as you claim? That is unclear. For practical purposes, to attack Canada was the main way that the Americans could fight the British. Leading U.S. historian of the war Donald R. Hickey maintains that if the U.S. had captured Canada the Madison administration would have used it in the peace negotiations not kept hold of it. Uowever, I think that Manifest Destiny shows the Americans would have kept Canada, but that's just my opinion.

        Of course the Americans burned the public buildings of not Toronto in April 1813 but York, the then capital of Upper Canada. It is sometimes erroneously said that the British burned the public buildings of Washington D.C. in retaliation the following year. But there's nothing in the British correspondence to show that was their intent. They spoke of other American infractions on the frontier, such as the burning of Newark (later Niagara-on-the-Lake) but not York.

        The British Army that captured Washington on August 24, 1814 didn't come down from the north (i.e, Canada) as you state. They came from Europe -- the army under Major General Robert Ross left the Garonne in southern France at the end of May.

        Yes impressment did end after the war but the reason was not to do with the War of 1812 but because the war with Napoleon was over with the deposed emperor being sent into his second exile on St. Helena.

        Andrew Jackson was a general at the time of the Battle of New Orleans not a colonel.

        I don't know where you live but I have organized a War of 1812 Symposium to take place in Baltimore on Saturday, October 22. Email me at editor1812@yahoo.com if you are interested.

        Best regards

        Chris

        **********************

        Christopher T. George,
        Author, Terror on the Chesapeake: The War of 1812 on the Bay
        Co-author (with Dr. John McCavitt), The Man Who Captured Washington:
        Major General Robert Ross and the War of 1812
        now available
        from Amazon at http://tinyurl.com/p6bsvze - hear interview at
        http://historyauthor.com/2016/03/man...ed-washington/
        The Canadian museums were unequivocal in that it was a battle for their survival and had they lost it would have been incorporated into the United States.

        Have to say a few things about Canada that surprised me. I've been fortunate enough to get around the world so I'm not speaking from a position of ignorance:

        Never have I seen so many national flags flying from flag-poles. Far, far more than the United States.

        Never have I seen such a ratio of businesses to people. Not sure how these places stay in business.

        Never have I seen so many fast food outlets. Unbelievable.

        The French Canadiens were great by the way over towards Quebec City. I really liked them. It could have helped that I speak enough French to get by in your average conversation, but regardless they were nothing but warm and friendly with us.

        Ottawa and Montreal pick of the bunch. Ottawa a real nice surprise.

        Comment


        • #34
          Hi Fleetwood Mac

          Many thanks for your interesting reflections on Canada then and now.

          Yes of course from the Canadian perspective, the War of 1812 was a war for survival. It is in fact the Canadians' "Great Patriotic War" that ensured that Canada was not swallowed up by the American behometh. It stands out in Canadian history as their major war of the period, while by contrast, in the United States, the War of 1812 is overshadowed by the Revolution but particularly by the Civil War. This was a major problem for the War of 1812 community at the time of the Bicentennial of the war because the Civil War's Sesquicentennial (150th Anniversary) was at the same time!!! So our war got short shrift as a result. It's also a fact that a number of states involved in the war did nothing to commemorate the Bicentennial of the war -- this happened with both New York and Louisiana -- despite the Battle of New Orleans having happened there. Maryland did commemorate the war in a big way, however.

          Although the War Hawks in the U.S. might have claimed the capture of Canada was the objective, was the takeover of Canada what the Madison administration was aiming for? The administration never said that was the objective, so U.S. historian Don Hickey can reasonably maintain that it might not have been the aim. As I stated, for practical purposes, the only real way the Americans could "get at" the British was to attack Canada.

          There is also the myth believed by the American public -- I hear it time and again -- that the British wanted their former colonies back. No they didn't. Britain's main aim in the war was to protect Canada, their major remaining possession in North America. The United States had been recognized as a sovereign nation by Great Britain for 30 years, and that was not going to change.

          Best regards

          Chris
          Last edited by ChrisGeorge; 10-04-2016, 02:43 PM.
          Christopher T. George
          Organizer, RipperCon #JacktheRipper-#True Crime Conference
          just held in Baltimore, April 7-8, 2018.
          For information about RipperCon, go to http://rippercon.com/
          RipperCon 2018 talks can now be heard at http://www.casebook.org/podcast/

          Comment


          • #35
            Been away for awhile friends, but my computer is fixed now.

            "1812" is one of the wars that most citizens of the U.S. just don't know much about except we did poorly in most of the land battles, did better in most of the ship to ship encounters and in two naval battles on the Great Lake (Erie) and on the large inland lake (briefly a "Great Lake" a few years ago, before it was universally sent packing) "Champlain" in New York and Vermont, and produced two Presidents (William Henry Harrison, who won the battle of the Thames River, and Andrew Jackson, who initially destroyed the Shawnee Indian threat (his view) in the battle of "Horshoe Bend"*), and then (at Ghent in Belgium) Henry Clay, John Quincy Adams, and Albert Gallatin managed to get a peace treaty together to end the war without changing anything that existed in 1811 to May 1812. Oh yes, Jackson wins the war's most famous battle at New Orleans, with the assistance of the "Barataria pirates" under Jean Lafitte after the treaty is signed, but before it is announced in Washington. Added to this is the burning of Washington, D.C. (and Toronto - or York as it was), the attack on Baltimore, and the death of General Ross, and Francis Scott Key composing the poem that is now the words of our national anthem, "The Star Spangled Banner". Few are taught about the fall of Detroit, the massacre at Fort Mims, or the acts of violence against the Canadians, or of Sir Isaac Brock, the young Jacob Brown and Winfield Scott, or Thomas MacDonald (who won the naval battle of Lake Champlain, but is not recalled as much as Oliver Hazard Perry, victor on Lake Erie, nor even Captain James Lawrence, of the " USS Chesapeake", because Perry and Lawrence made memorable statements in their battles that became naval tradition fodder, unlike MacDonald**,

            [*Jackson was popular for his attacking and defeating the Indian menace - as his neighbors who were Caucasians would have called it) at the time, though now it is his victory in Louisiana that pushes his name to people's minds. The treatment of the Indians is now rather deplored quite a bit.]

            [**In Perry's case he gave one of those statements which is reduced to a pithy comment, "We have met the enemy, and they are ours!". Ironically the circumstances of the fight where Lawrence said his memorable, "Don't give up the ship!" were of his commanding a hard luck vessel ( the "Chesapeake was involved in a violent incident in 1807 when the British on "HMS Leopard" fired into it during peacetime when it was refused permission to board the "Chesapeake", killing several Americans and causing it's commander, Captain Barron, to surrender), that now was outgunned by "HMS Shannon", and again forced to surrender. Lawrence was mortally wounded, and subsequently died. His body is now in Trinity Churchyard in lower Manhattan, New York City. The "Chesapeake" was retained by the British as a prize after the war. Hopefully it was now as much bad luck for them as it had been for us.

            That Lawrence died with such an outstanding statement of national pride on his lips amazes me as it was out of a disaster. The closest I can think like it is the probably mythical statement that as the water began pouring over the main deck of the "RMS Titanic", Captain Edward J. Smith (who died in the disaster) raised his megaphone and yelled, "Be British my men!!". Like to believe "E.J." said that, but he probably did not.]

            We don't learn much about the War of 1812 in U.S. schools. In high school we spent weeks about the coming of the American Revolution and it's fighting. Also weeks about the American Civil War, and the anti-bellum South and Slavery, as well as Reconstruction. Later we learn about the events concerning the rise of Fascism and Communism, the rise of Hitler and Japan's militarists, the start of World War II, Pearl Harbor, and the battles leading to V. E. and V.J. day (including Hiroshima and Nagasaki, the "Shoah" in Europe, war crimes in Asia, and the trials at Nuremburg and Tokyo). This leads to in-depth teaching. So too the events of World War I, although few really learn about Belleau Wood or the Argonne Forrest. Korea is important due to the Cold War history lessons, and Vietnam is the nightmare we should have learned from. I can't guess what the post-"9/11" war is going to be looked at, but suspect it will be somewhat mooted in comparison to Vietnam.

            But 1812 is taught in one class, as is the Mexican - American War of 1846-47, the Indian Wars (usually reduced to a comment on the great Indian victory at "Greasy Grass"/"Little Big Horn" and the final massacre at "Wounded Knee", and the "Cuban-Spanish-American "splendid little war" of 1898! The latter does give us a moment to glow because we won territory, but few learn of the "Filipino" Insurrection (1899 - 1902) which cost more lives and led to some American sponsored war crimes against the Philippine Island's people, nor that we kept the Islands as our leading colony until 1946. Although we did not take over Cuba (it had been a goal of some Americans as early as the 1830s) we made sure it was closely controlled, until Castro's revolution stopped that in 1959. We still have Puerto Rico and Guam. At the time of the 1899 peace treaty many felt McKinley slipped up because we failed to get the Canaries as well, but there were limits.

            History is taught by each country to present their victories in the best light, but let us face the ugly fact that great pain and harm is done by one country against it's foes. 1812 (if it has had a good effect) did teach the U.S. not to underestimate our half-brother neighbor to the north, who on occasion showed us where to get off. It probably led to the U.S. and Canada to maintain an increasingly tolerant mood towards each other regarding being good neighbors, and having the longest boarder with out military installations in the world. However this has not prevented Canadians to resent a type of condescension by the U.S. government towards it at times (note the comments of Tory Prime Minister John Diefenbaker, and Liberal Prime Minister Pierre Trudeau). I can say that with power that bad habit of condescension reappears, and it is unfortunate. But all countries have it.

            Our relations with Britain never (despite bad occurrences in 1832, 1861 - 1863, and 1895***) led to such extremes again, and in the 20th Century led to our assisting our former mother country to survive two World Wars, both of which ruined her own empire. Oddly the bad occurrences in 1833 and 1861 were tied to 1812.

            In 1833 Jackson, now President of the U.S., forced the British and French to pay heavy indemnities for losses to American ship owners due to the depredations on our merchant fleet from 1798 (Adams' "Undeclared Naval War" with France) to the days of our idiotic "Embargo Act (Jefferson's bright idea - 1807 to 1809), to the British and French seizures of 1809 to 1815. The England of William IV and France of Louis Philippe paid the fines.

            In 1861, with the American Civil War only three months old, Commodore Charles Wilkins (explorer of Antarctica in the 1840s) took a leaf from the British in the 1800s, and stopped the British steamer "Trent" to remove Confederate diplomats Mason and Slidell from going to Europe. Now impressment was reversed, and Britain did not find it as acceptable. We only avoided war due to the diplomacy of President Lincoln (who returned Mason and Slidell to the British), and the diplomatic efforts of Lord John Russell the Foreign Secretary, his Minister to the U.S., Lord Lyons, and the Prince Consort Albert (his last public service). We still had problems with the U.K. about certain Confederate ships (the "CSS Alabama" and "CSS Florida") built in Britain and sold to the South, which destroyed U.S. commerce, but that matter was finally stopped and in 1871 a huge claims indemnity paid to the U.S. after arbitration in Geneva. If the "Trent Affair" had a good side it soured Britain on further use of impressment tactics - it had finally been used on them in a similar fashion. THEN did it end as a method of warfare.

            [***In 1895 the U.S. and U.K. almost came to blows over the dispute between Venezuela and British Guiana on their exact boundary. The large territory involved was rich in natural resources, so both wanted to settle this to their own advantage. Britain found the second Grover Cleveland administration keen on supporting Venezuela's claims, as it looked like a land grab in violation of the "Monroe Doctrine". Things got quite heated, with then outside observers Winston Churchill and Theodore Roosevelt hoping for a chance at a real war for the military glory they sought. Finally an arbitration was held, and former President Benjamin Harrison represented Venezuela's claims. But the arbitration found more in favor of Britain, so it did better than the Cleveland Administration would have wanted. But within a few ears the U.S. and U.K. began rebuilding a stronger family friendship again. Anti-British opinion in Europe due to the Boer War and suspicions of the U.S. stealing colonies from the Kingdom of Spain in the Cuban War led to American and British diplomats causing a change in the behavior of both states towards each other.]

            As for the real losers of the War of 1812, I suspect we all know it was the Native Americans. They had found an organizer of genius in chief Tecumseh, who (in retrospect) both sides should have embraced. There was room in North America for a third country under Native American hands, probably beginning around Illinois and headed across the Mississippi. I think it could have worked, basing it on some kind of combination of tribal leadership counsels and democracy. But land greed got in the way, and it led to the British willingly (for the moment anyway) to ally with Tecumseh against the U.S. This had led to his defeat before the war at Tippicanoe (1811), and then his death and final defeat at the Thames (1813). Following that were several massacres, culminating in Fort Mims, which angered the Whites in the areas of Tennessee, Georgia, and Alabama, and gave Jackson the full support he needed for his fighting through "Horshoe Bend" (1814). At Ghent, Lord Gambier and the British negotiators initially tried to keep Tecumseh's state on the table, but gradually realized that it was an expendable item and dropped it. Indian rights in the U.S. would never again have any strong non-American champion to push it. For the Native Americans, the road from Horshoe Bend to President Jackson's "trail of tears" of the 1830s is quite clear.

            Jeff
            Last edited by Mayerling; 10-06-2016, 08:29 PM.

            Comment


            • #36
              I was surprised (maybe even worried) when you hadn't chimed in on this one mate.
              G U T

              There are two ways to be fooled, one is to believe what isn't true, the other is to refuse to believe that which is true.

              Comment


              • #37
                Originally posted by GUT View Post
                I was surprised (maybe even worried) when you hadn't chimed in on this one mate.
                Thank you, my friend, for worrying. But it was only a mechanical problem.

                Jeff

                Comment


                • #38
                  We had to keep Detroit. We lost.
                  - Ginger

                  Comment

                  Working...
                  X