The Revolutionary war and the war of 1812, shaped America
into what it is today. Without these victories, America could very well still
be without independence. In this essay, I? will explain how the revolutionary
war began and all the conflicts that took place in between. I? will also be
discussing who actually started the Revolutionary war. And finally, explain how
the war of 1812 was won and what conflicts came along with it.
In 1775, conflict between American colonies and the British
government had reached its breaking point. In April of that same year, “The
shot heard around the world” was fired by British soldiers after being called
lobster backs because of their red coats. This was only one of the many battles fought during
the Revolutionary War. This ordeal was great in Massachusetts. Seeing as though
patriot leaders formed a somewhat underground government, that trained and prepared
for armed conflict with British troops, whom where occupying Boston.
April 18, 700 troops were sent to collect anyone eligible to
fight in battle. Going into this war, Britain was looked at as the automatic winner.
In 1749, Britain took their victory over France and Spain in the Seven Years
War. This war led to many more problems, financially being the greatest. The
national debt had doubled to 130 million. This led to the passing of the Stamp
Act in 1765, the colonist were totally
against the act and expressed that their rights protected them from being taxed
by the parliament. In 1766, parliament decided to repeal the act.
Tension began to rise after the death of a teen, murdered by
an official in 1770. This caused a problem after troops opened fire on
civilians in the Boston Massacre. Colonist in Rhode Island burned a customs
schooner, leading to the passing of the Tea Act in 1773. But the governor of
Massachusetts permitted British tea ships to stay in the Boston Harbor. Causing
parliament to pass a legislation, which led to the closing of the Boston Harbor
until the tea was paid for.
After much consideration, William Howe was determined to
take the fight to America. William began sailing for America in June 1776, and
troops landed on July 2. Not thinking clearly Washington spread his troops
throughout the city. A negotiation of peace was brought to the attention of
the Americans, but was denied due to an informal proposal.. After
Washington withdrew to Manhattan, by force from Howe. Another attempt was made
to make peace. The attempt was unsuccessful because there was no guarantee of
On November 16, the British captured a great amount of
Washington’s army. Washington fell back a couple of days later. The American soldiers
captured were sent to prison ships, where many of them died of disease and
neglect. After many successful accomplishments, William Howe accepted the Order
of the Bath award from the King. By this time, the British were confident that
the war was there’s.
Christmas Day 1776, Washington captures 900 British
soldiers. This gave America hope. The battle of Yorktown was a huge turning point
for America. The siege was the last major land battle fought in the American
Revolutionary War. In 1781, the British were forced to surrender after more
of their soldiers were captured at the fort in Yorktown. September 3, 1783,
the Treaty of Paris was signed. The Revolutionary war was over and America finally
had their independence.
The signing of the Treaty of Paris really sparked the start
of the 1812 war. Yet again, Britain came with an army powerhouse. But the
Americans weren’t even Britain’s main focus, they were too busy fighting a war
against the French empire. The British had no interest in fighting the
Americans. They had one goal and that was to keep the U.S. from taking any part
of Canada. So Britain went to war with little troops to spare and fought with
British regulars on their line.
By autumn of 1814 the American economy was a wreck. In that
same year, British captured American troops and burned down Washington D.C. Britain
was doing everything they could to be successful in this war. Part of that was
forcing U.S. sailors to serve on British Navy ships. Around 3,000 Americans
slaves escaped to the British side during the war. Some were able to escape
during the chaos of the war, others were offered their freedom and settled most
of them in Nova Scotia.
Some refer to the war of
1812 as the “War of Faulty Communications”. Mainly because the U.S. declared
war on a Britain for interfering with their trade. Britain agreed not to, but because communication was
so slow, the war had already begun. Better communication could’ve also prevented
the Battle of New Orleans. Most battles fought during this war, took place
along the border of the U.S. and Canada. Another good percentage of it took
place out at sea.
In September of 1813, Oliver Hazard Perry led the Americans
to a victory at Lake Erie. This was a very important victory for the U.S.,
because it gave them control over Lake Erie. Nine American ships invaded and
captured British ships. This battle was also nicknamed the “Put in Bay” battle.
The fight took place in the shallow end of Lake Erie, it was the harbor named
“Put in Bay, which Harvey sailed to defeat the British.
During this war, diseases took most of the soldiers lives. Most
were common, such as smallpox, pneumonia, and just infections from looting
cleaned equipment. But don’t get me wrong, many lives were taken on the battle
field as well. 2,260 Americans were killed in action and 4,505 were left with injuries.
As for the British, 1,600 lives were taken and 3,670 were left with injuries.
3,322 died from disease related causes.
Because England and France were still at war during this
time, Napoleon hoped this would sidetrack Britain’s focus. He even tricked
president Madison into thinking that they would stop interfering with American
trade. But Napoleon had no intention of letting up. Madison, believing him, told
Britain that they would no longer trade with them. But with Britain instead.
This was a huge fuel to the start of the war of 1812.
The battle of Lake Champlain put a stop to all northern
invasions. During this battle, the British and U.S. were meeting to create the
treaty of Ghent. They were attempting to come up with a negotiation that would
be good for both Britain and America’s side. The Americans took the victory at
The treaty of Ghent was the peace treaty that ended the war
of 1812. Both sides signed Christmas Eve in 2814. The terms of the treaty
stated that all territory was to be returned. As well as commissions were
planning to settle the boundary between the U.S. and Canada. The British kept
Canada, along with maritime policies that America claimed was the reason for
war. America left happily, thinking that they’d won. While the Canadians were
happier because they know they won, remaining in the British empire.
Many people feel that the 1812 war was brought on as a
distraction from Napoleon’s struggle against Britain. They refused the war by
not paying taxes, boycotting, and refusing to supply troops. The main result of
the 1812 war, was the two century’s peace between the U.S. and Britain.
“The Star Spangled Banner”, was actually written after a the
battle of Baltimore. After Francis Scott Key noticed that the flag was still
standing after the battle. The song became the national anthem in 1931. The
American flag was the largest in the nation at the time, and is on display in
the National museum. The battle of Baltimore actually took place at sea. American
soldiers defeated the British as they
attempted to capture Baltimore.
These many battles, at land or sea. All played a major part
in the shaping of our country today. America declared both wars and won both
as well. Although at times the Americans were looked at as weak and
defeated. We took advantage of many opportunities, made the right decisions and
came out on top.
Most look at the 1812 war as “The Second war of American
Independence”. This is very accurate seeing as though America took Britain to
war for a good cause. They needed security of their trade and they fought until
they felt they had it, not once but twice. Both wars play a significant part in
In conclusion, the Revolutionary war and 1812 war were both
most definitely declared by the U.S. America was victorious with the surrender
of the British in Yorktown. Signing the treaty of Paris gave us great opportunity,
and best of all it gave us our independence. In 1812, we seen that Britain was
attempting to tarnish our source of trade. We soon put them in the worst odds
& were victorious after the signing of the treaty of Ghent. Both wars were fought
over many years & have great significance.
Without these wars, America wouldn’t be where we are today.
The revolutionary war gave us our independence, although it may have taken many
years and many deaf ears. We still came out on top. And the war of 1812 left us
with more land and even more peace.