Not much•Unfortunately for the U.S. in June, 1812, they were not at all ready to fight a war against the mighty British.
Not much•Their military was small and there was no promise of help coming from other nations as happened about 30 years earlier.
Not much• The early land battles did not go well for the U.S., as they failed in their efforts to capture Canada, believing that the Canadians were just as eager to eliminate British rule there as the Americans had been earlier.
Not much• Naval battles were a little bit better, but even victories by ships like the U.S.S. Constitution (“Old Ironsides”), Wasp, and United States were not nearly enough to turn the tide of the war in the favor of the U.S.
- Or +•By the summer of 1814, the British blockade was eliminating any trade and had slowed attacks from the U.S. navy down to almost zero.
- Or +•At this point, the British sailed up the Chesapeake Bay and marched to Washington, D.C.
- Or +• As they approached, President Madison and his wife, Dolley, fled the capital city for the countryside, as the British set fire to the city, burning the White House and the Capitol building.
- Or +• From there the British decided to march about 50 miles north to the city of Baltimore and Fort McHenry, on which the unleashed an all-night bombardment.
- Or +• When the smoke cleared on the morning of September 14, 1814, the U.S. flag was still flying over the fort, announcing that the U.S. would not surrender to the British.
- Or +• A young lawyer, Francis Scott Key, who was under guard on board a British ship that night, was inspired by the defense of Baltimore and wrote words to convey that joy.
- Or +•What became known as “The Star-Spangled Banner” was later put to music and became our national anthem in 1931.
Status quo, ante bellum•After losing at Baltimore, coupled with the defeat of Napoleon in Europe, the British were tired of fighting.
Status quo, ante bellum•Clearly this was a war that neither side really wanted and so delegates met in Belgium to discuss peace.
Status quo, ante bellum• What they ultimately decided in the Treaty of Ghent was that nothing would change from how it was before the war, “status quo, ante bellum” (the way things were before the war).
Status quo, ante bellum• Many people were happy with this announcement as they felt that the U.S. had no defeated the British twice and proven that they deserved to be an independent nation.
Status quo, ante bellum• For good or bad, delegates from New England had started to meet in Hartford, CT to discuss seceding from the U.S., as “Mr. Madison’s War” had cost them a great deal.
Status quo, ante bellum• The plans started at the Hartford Convention went nowhere, as the Treaty of Ghent was announced shortly after they started to meet.
Status quo, ante bellum• Also, after the war was officially over, but before it could be announced, Andrew Jackson won the greatest victory of the war for the Americans at the Battle of New Orleans in January, 1815.
Status quo, ante bellum•The victory made Jackson a household name and would serve him well in later years.