I've been asked by Betsy Trumball if I would relay this message. It is in
reference to the question of why the American's are sure they one the war.
Rob Trumball as a matter of introduction are is the commander of the Army of
the Old Northwest (a US Forces umbrella group) and Betsy Trumball is the
Command Sgt for the 19th US Rt. of Infantry. These folks are asking to join
this list and I've already requested that the invitation be extended. I am a
little disappointed that this invitation has not been forwarded. Until this
omission has been redressed I have been forwarding the contents of the
discussions to them.
We're new to your list, but not to 1812 or to the education of the
masses. Both the US and Canada have a difficult time distinguishing
national pride from the reality of the past. History is also open to
interpretation, lest we forget than and all be out of a hobby. Our home
is in Ohio-- We live on the ground where the British built their
batteries and defeated Dudley's party during May and July of 1813. When
We teach the subject of Ohio's involvement in the War of 1812, We
clarify that, while the losers are clearly identifiable, the winners may
be less so.
In the narrow interpretation of victory, the British won. Yes, the U.S.
declared War. Yes, they had many obstacles to overcome in their
formation of the armies and the defense of their borders. Yes, we
signed a treaty of peace with Britain without taking Canada.
To the United States, though, the War of 1812 remains a formative period
and was a popular topic for study through the 1880's (when it was
overshadowed by the calamities of the Civil War).
On the serious side--
�Thames and the invasion of Cananda, Battle of Lake Erie, Plattsburg,
Bladensburg, Chippewa, Lundy's Lane (read the U.S. versions too boys)
and, finally New Orleans. For a nation ill prepared for war, we didn't
do too bad against the second greatest military machine of the early
�The U.S. experienced an enormous growth in population and confidence
after the war. After the conclusion of the war (1816) , the U.S. navy
defeats the Tripolitans in the Mediterranean.
�Though the Civil War removes the U.S. from the world stage, 20th
century history reflects the dynamic industrialism catalyzed during the
War of 1812 and the dramatic expansion of such during the Civil War.
Evidenced by-- U.S. involvement's in WWI and II (to aid their former foes
the British) and the lend lease programs (we are not poor losers)
On the more satirical side--
�While we had to keep Detroit, you had to keep Quebec.
�Where do you shop when the CDN dollar is strong?
�Where do we shop now that Canada is 40% off.
�We may have Bill, but you've got Cretian (its close to his name-- our
second language is Spanish.)
Finally, points like this do noting to further scholarship and do much
to enflame sometime strained relations between Canandian and U.S.
reenactors. You've got your points of national pride, we have ours.
The American claim to winning the war of 1812 stems, ultimately, from
the American myth of triumph over overwhelming odds.
Betsy and Rob
P.S. This begs the question, why, when the average Joe in Canada seems
to know as much about the War of 1812 as the Average Yank, does this
issue occupy center stage in today's debates-- discussion groups should
be mind expanding, not reinforce our stereotypes and prejudices.