OT: War of 1812

Dan Goncharoff thegonch at GMAIL.COM
Fri May 28 11:50:18 UTC 2010

You forgot to mention that we took a large chunk of Gulf Coast
territory, proving to Spain the futility of trying to keep its Florida

Since much of that territory is now covered in oil, perhaps we should
give in back to Spain?


On 5/27/2010 9:29 PM, Dave Wilton wrote:
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> Sender:       American Dialect Society<ADS-L at LISTSERV.UGA.EDU>
> Poster:       Dave Wilton<dave at WILTON.NET>
> Subject:      Re: OT: War of 1812
> -------------------------------------------------------------------------------
> The War of 1812 was essentially a stalemate. Neither side won or lost
> (except the Native Americans, who lost, as usual). The war was essentially
> fought by mistake, considered a nuisance by Britain which was preoccupied
> with Napoleon, and politically divisive in the US.
> No territory changed hands as a result of the war. Both sides successfully
> repelled invaders. The Canadians repulsed the American invasion, but the
> Americans did manage to burn York (Toronto). The Americans, in turn, turned
> back the Canadian counter-invasion at the Battle of Plattsburgh. The British
> invasion of the Chesapeake region managed to sack Washington, avenging York,
> but was defeated when it tried to take Baltimore (Ft. McHenry and the
> Star-Spangled Banner). And the British invasion of the Gulf coast met with
> defeat at New Orleans (yes, after the peace treaty had been signed, but it
> was a major defeat for the British nonetheless).
> On the seas, the British lost in the Great Lakes, but blockaded American
> ports, severely impeding American trade. But the Royal Navy was severely
> embarrassed in single-ship engagements with the American frigate
> Constitution and her sister ships, which outclassed any frigates the British
> had.
> The Treaty of Ghent ended the fighting, returned the forces to pre-war
> borders, and gave the Americans fishing rights in the Gulf of St. Lawrence
> in return for American recognition of the boundary with Canada. Impressment
> of American sailors by the British, which had been the proximate cause of
> the war, had ended with Napoleon's defeat and was not part of the peace
> negotiations.
> Hawthorne, who was 8-10 years old when the war was fought, may not have
> written about it, but saying it was "unimportant" is incorrect. The war was
> wildly unpopular in New England, which suffered mightily under the British
> blockade, and was on the verge of secession from the US when the war ended.
> And later on in the 19th century, the war was the source of much patriotic
> fervor in the US and popularly, albeit unfairly, considered a great American
> victory. (Perhaps New Englander Hawthorne was reluctant to feed the
> propaganda machine by writing about a war that was unpopular in his region.)
> The longest and probably most important legacy of the war was the settling
> of US-Canadian border disputes. It's hard to underestimate the long-term
> political importance of the defined and peaceful border over the last two
> centuries.
> -----Original Message-----
> From: American Dialect Society [mailto:ADS-L at LISTSERV.UGA.EDU] On Behalf Of
> Dan Goncharoff
> Sent: Thursday, May 27, 2010 2:57 PM
> Subject: Re: OT: War of 1812
> Just pointing out that the guys fighting along with Col. Jackson didn't
> know the war was over, and thought they were still fighting it.
> Wasn't this the war about which some wag once said, "we lost the war and
> won the peace"?
> DanG
>> At 5/27/2010 03:37 PM, Laurence Horn wrote:
>> "In 1814 we took a little trip, along with Col. Jackson down the mighty
> Mississip?"  No, that was actually
>> after the war was over, and it's not exactly a saying.
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