2012 marks 200 years since the start of the War of 1812. This is the second war the US fought against the British Empire for our freedom. In that war, the British captured Washington DC and burnt the White House. It was also in this war when the National Anthem–The Star Spangled Banner–was written (in 1814).
Hadn’t thought about this bit of history until I read this article. About the war, it says:
In the war American forces, with its small naval fleet, prevailed against the British and the vaunted Royal Navy. The victory was instrumental in establishing the United States as a formidable military force and solidified the country’s claim to the Louisiana Purchase, effectively doubling the size of the nation.
“The victory had a galvanizing effect on the whole country,” Wiese said. “The aftermath of the War of 1812 is when you first begin to see a cohesive sense of national identity.”
Image from boston public library via flickr