War of 1812
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The War of 1812 was fought between the British Empire and the United States from 1812 to 1814 on land in North America and at sea. More than half of the British forces were made up of Canadian militia (volunteers) because British soldiers were fighting Napoleon in Europe. The British defeated the attacking American forces. In the beginning, the war increased levels of nationalism in both Canada and the United States.
The War [change]
The Americans declared war against Great Britain because the British began taking American ships by force. The British were also kidnapping American sailors and forcing them to serve in the British navy. The fighting began when the United States started to attack the Canadian provinces in 1812 and 1813, but the borders were successfully defended by the British. In 1813, British and American ships fought in Lake Erie in a battle known as the Battle of Lake Erie. Americans under Oliver Hazard Perry won, giving America control of Lake Erie.
In 1814, more British soldiers arrived in the United States. They burned Washington D.C. to the ground and also attacked Baltimore. It was during this battle that a poem was written by an American lawyer, Francis Scott Key. The poem was later used to give the words to a new national anthem for the United States: "The Star Spangled Banner." The final battle of the war took place in January of 1815. The British attacked New Orleans and lost against the Americans and General Andrew Jackson. The battle took place after the peace treaty had been signed.
The War of 1812 ended in 1815 even though the signing of the Treaty of Ghent, which was supposed to end the war, happened on Dec 24, 1814, in Belgium. Both sides thought they had won, but no great changes took place. News of the peace treaty did not reach the US until after the Battle of New Orleans in January 1815.