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The War Of 1812 Essay

1265 words - 5 pages

The War of 1812In June 1812, during President James Madison's administration the congress of the United States declared war on Britain. The main reasons that led to the declaration of the war were led by a powerful motivation to uphold national honor in face of what the American considered British insults. The British attempted to restrict the highly profit American trade with Napoleonic France that was locked in a long and bitter conflict with them. The British Royal navy seized American ships, cargoes, and American sailors under the act of impressment. The British removed the sailors from their American ships and forced them to serve on British vessels. Britain claimed that those mariners were deserters from the Royal navy even though the majority of them had documents proving that they were American citizens. Second was the British support to the Indians in the Northwest Territories of Ohio, Indiana, Illinois, Michigan and Wisconsin that prevented an American expansion to this area.In addition was an American desire to annex the British colonies of North America in what was later known as the Province of Canada.The British forces were heavily engaged in the war with Napoleonic France and most of their army was deployed in Europe. That is why the British supported the Indians and recruited them as allies against their mutual enemy; the Americans. British commander-in-chief in North America Lieutenant General Sir George Prevost maintained a defensive strategy with his Indian and Canadian allies to defend Lower Canada from the American invading force led by Brigadier General William Hull who crossed the Detroit River on July 12, 1812.As soon as he learned of the outbreak of war British commander in Upper Canada Major General Isaac Brock ordered Captain Charles Roberts to capture Fort Mackinac, an American fort situated on an island of strategic importance. 600 British regulars, fur traders, voyagers, and Indian warriors surrendered the Fort causing American Lieutenant Porter Hank to surrender among with his 61 soldiers on July 17, 1812.Surprised by the fall of Fort Mackinac General Hull retreat his forces to the American side of the Detroit River and ordered Captain Nathan Heald to retreat his modest group of soldiers, militiamen, women and children out of Fort Dearborn to the safety of Fort Wayne.On August 15, 1812 Captain Heald's group fall into an Indian ambush led by Chief Blackbird the head of 500 Potawatomi and Winnebago warriors. Most of Captain Heald's force was killed and some women and children were cruelly beheaded by the Indians. Those who survived stayed Indian prisoners for more than a year. This massacre is known as the Fort Dearborn massacre. In the next morning of August 16, 1812 seven hundred British regulars, and Canadian militia under General Is the command of General sir Isaac Brock with six hundred Native American Shawnee warriors led by the powerful Shawnee leader Tecumseh, Britain's most powerful ally, start moving towards...

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