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# Tuesday, June 12, 2012
War of 1812 Bicentennial: Genealogy Resources
Posted by Diane

Two hundred years ago June 18, President James Madison signed the United States' war declaration against Great Britain, starting the War of 1812.

Contributing to the declaration were British impediments to American trade with France, the impressment of American merchant sailors into Britain's Royal Navy, and Britain's support of American Indian tribes against American expansion into the Old Northwest as a buffer for Canada. Some Americans including Thomas Jefferson even saw the war as an opportunity to acquire Canada.

The war lasted until 1815 and ended in what many historians consider a draw, with neither side gaining or losing significant territory.

Psychologically, though, Americans felt they'd won a second war of independence. Canada successfully repelled US invaders, giving the war a prominent spot in Canadian national consciousness. Great Lakes and Southeast American Indians lost their hold on their lands. Many left, made deals with the US government or were removed to Indian Territory. 

You can learn more about the war and watch PBS' documentary on the network's War of 1812 website.

Find bicentennial events, a timeline, and museum and historic site information at the Official War of 1812 Bicentennial website.

Also check state commemorative websites such as Ohio's War of 1812 and Maryland's StarSpangled200. The Battle of Baltimore, of course, inspired Francis Scott Key to pen the "Star Spangled Banner."

The Navy, which emerged as the key to US defenses, is posting information and commemorative events at OurFlagWasStillThere.org and the War of 1812 Bicentennial Network Facebook page.

If your ancestors fought in the War of 1812, here are some free FamilyTreeMagazine.com articles to start your research:
  • At Your Service: Compare your ancestor's birth date to this chart to see if he might have fought in the War of 1812 (or another war).
  • War of 1812 Records: Our AncestorNews columnist links to several of her favorite, free War of 1812 online databases. (Note that the Library of Virginia database linked on this page is down June 12 due to a power outage at the library.)

Here are some resources from ShopFamilyTree.com that you might find helpful.



Canadian roots | Family Tree Magazine articles | Military records
Tuesday, June 12, 2012 1:43:44 PM (Eastern Daylight Time, UTC-04:00)  #  Comments [0]