The War of 1812 us history/Napp Name

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The War of 1812

US History/Napp Name: __________________

Tensions between the United States and Britain were rising, and it would fall to President James Madison to decide whether or not to lead the United States into its first full-scale war since the Revolution. Like Jefferson, Madison wanted to avoid war. To force the British to stop seizing American ships, Congress had passed the Non-Intercourse Act. The Non-Intercourse Act opened trade with all nations except England and France. The Act stated that if either England or France stopped harassing United States shipping, trade would be opened with that nation. In the next three years, 1809-1812, both England and France agreed verbally to change their policies toward United States shipping but failed to follow through. Continued impressment [capturing American sailors and forcing them into Britain’s naval service] and the Native-American threat on the frontier [Americans believed the British had supplied weapons to American Indians who had attacked Americans] increased the willingness to go to war in the United States. Finally, Madison asked Congress to make preparations for war.

There were three major areas where fighting took place during the War of 1812. The United States mounted an unsuccessful attack on Canada but did win some successes on the Great Lakes; the English attacked Baltimore, Maryland (an attack described in the National Anthem), and burned the capitol, Washington, in a raid; the United States fought successfully in the Southwest, where the great hero of the war, Andrew Jackson defeated the English at the Battle of New Orleans. The Treaty of Ghent ended the war. No mention was made of impressment or matters of maritime law that had been the major cause of the war. Some historians have referred to the war as the second American War of Independence. The United States fought the English to a draw and lost no territory. The war confirmed the integrity and viability of the new nation. It enhanced the sense of nationalism in most of the country. The Federalists of New York and New England who opposed the war lost national support and died as a political party.” ~ American History

1. Prior to the War of 1812, the United States

(1) Allied with France against Britain

(2) Allied with Britain against France.

(3) Stayed out of the conflict between France and Britain

(4) Went to war with both France and Britain
2. Which of the following BEST describes how the War of 1812 affected the Federalists?

(1) Increased their power.

(2) Somewhat strengthened their power.

(3) Destroyed their power at a national level.

(4) Somewhat weakened their power in New England.

3. Americans favored war against Britain in 1812 because of

(1) American hopes to conquer Canada.

(2) British seizure of American ships and impressment of American sailors.

(3) British provocation of Indian attacks against western settlers.

(4) American hopes to oust the British from Canada.

(5) All of the answers are correct.
4. Which of the following was NOT among the results of the War of 1812?

(1) Nationwide acclaim for Andrew Jackson

(2) Rejuvenated American nationalism

(3) Rebirth of the Federalist Party

(4) Victory over the western Indians

Mini Q: The War of 1812
Document 1:

The question…is reduced to this single point – which shall we do, abandon or defend our own commercial and maritime rights, and the personal liberties of our citizens employed in exercising them? These rights are essentially attacked, and war is the only means of redress…I know of one principle to make a nation great…and that is to protect every citizen in the lawful pursuit of his business…Protection and patriotism are reciprocal…if [the British] persist in such daring insult and injury to [the United States], it will be bound in honor and interest to resist?

~ Congressman John C. Calhoun

According to Congressman John C. Calhoun, why must the United States declare war on Great Britain?

Document 2:

if you go to war it will not be for the protection of…maritime rights. Gentlemen from the North have been taken up to some high mountain and shown all the kingdoms of the earth; and Canada seems tempting in their sight…Agrarian cupidity [greed for farm land], not maritime right, urges the war.

~ Congressman John Randolph of Virginia

What did Congressman Randolph believe was “really” behind the talk of war with England?

Document 3:

to demonstrate to the world…that the people of these states were united, one and indivisible…to show that our republican government was competent to assert its rights, to maintain the interests of the people, and to repel all foreign aggression…My conduct as your representative has been regulated entirely by these great and important considerations.

~ Congressman Hugh Nelson of Virginia

What reasons did Congressman Nelson give for his support of war in 1812?

The Question: What forces led Americans to declare war on Britain in 1812?


Before the War of 1812: The Alien and Sedition Acts
The Alien and Sedition Acts were passed by Congress in 1798 in preparation for an anticipated war with France. Interpreting the participation of immigrants in the Republican opposition party as evidence of a relationship between foreigners and disloyalty, Federalists championed tighter restrictions for foreigners and critics of their policies.
The Naturalization Act of 1798 increased the residency requirement for American citizenship from five to fourteen years, required aliens [foreigners] to declare their intent to acquire citizenship five years before it could be granted, and made persons from ‘enemy’ nations ineligible for naturalization. The act consequently deprived Republicans of an important source of political support. Aliens were specifically affected by two other acts, which authorized their deportation if they were deemed ‘dangerous to the peace and safety of the United States’ and their wholesale incarceration or expulsion by presidential executive order during wartime.
Under the Sedition Act, even the rights of American citizens were curtailed by prohibiting assembly ‘with intent to oppose any measure … of the government’ and made it illegal for any person to ‘print, utter, or publish … any false, scandalous, and malicious writing’ against the government. Armed with these statutes, Federalists attempted to suppress Republican opposition. The Acts provoked the first examination of the constitutional limits on free speech, the press, and the rights of an organized political opposition. When Thomas Jefferson became president, enforcement of the Alien and Sedition Acts ended. The sedition and incarceration provisions of the acts, however, were resurrected during later wars.”

~ The Reader’s Companion to American History

1. The Alien and Sedition Acts were aimed primarily at

(1) Illegal aliens

(2) British radicals

(3) Political opposition

(4) French radicals
2. The Sedition Act

(1) Threatened First Amendment freedoms. (2) Established criteria for deporting dangerous foreigners.

(3) Changed naturalization requirements for new citizens.

(4) Was never enforced.

(5) Was found by the Supreme Court to be unconstitutional.

3. The main purpose of the Alien and Sedition Acts was to

(1) Capture French and British spies.

(2) Control the Federalists.

(3) Silence and punish critics of the Federalists.

(4) Keep Thomas Jefferson from becoming president.

(5) Provide support for the Democratic-Republican party.
4. How would the Alien Acts apply today?

(1) The Acts would allow unlimited immigration

(2) The Acts would end all immigration

(3) The Acts would deport immigrants suspected of anti-government views

(4) The Acts would create harsher penalties for illegal immigrants

Carton Analysis:

Identify the images in the political cartoon:

  • The snake represents: ______________________________________________________________________

  • The children represent: ______________________________________________________________________

  • The relationship between the snake and the children: ______________________________________________________________________

  • The caption of the political cartoon: ______________________________________________________________________

  • Define sedition: ______________________________________________________________________

  • Define gag-rulers: ______________________________________________________________________

  • The meaning of the political cartoon: ______________________________________________________________________

  • It is said that a picture is worth a thousand words. Has this image succeeded? ______________________________________________________________________

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