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The War of 1812

Melvyn Bragg and guests discuss the War of 1812, the conflict between America and Great Britain which is sometimes referred to as the second American War of Independence.

Melvyn Bragg and his guests discuss the War of 1812, the conflict between America and the British Empire sometimes referred to as the second American War of Independence. In June 1812, President James Madison declared war on Britain, angered by the restrictions Britain had imposed on American trade, the Royal Navy's capture of American sailors and British support for Native Americans. After three years of largely inconclusive fighting, the conflict finally came to an end with the Treaty of Ghent which, among other things, helped to hasten the abolition of the global slave trade.

Although the War of 1812 is often overlooked, historians say it had a profound effect on the USA and Canada's sense of national identity, confirming the USA as an independent country. America's national anthem, The Star-Spangled Banner began life as a poem written after its author, Francis Scott Key, witnessed the British bombardment of Fort McHenry during the Battle of Baltimore. The war also led to Native Americans losing hundreds of thousands of acres of land in a programme of forced removal.


Kathleen Burk
Professor of Modern and Contemporary History at University College London

Lawrence Goldman
Fellow in Modern History at St Peter's College, University of Oxford

Frank Cogliano
Professor of American History at the University of Edinburgh

Producer: Victoria Brignell.

Available now

42 minutes

Last on

Thu 31 Jan 2013 21:30


Professor Kathleen Burk at University College London


Dr Lawrence Goldman at the University of Oxford


Professor Frank Cogliano at the University of Edinburgh


The Star-Spangled Banner


Star Spangled Banner


War of 1812 – Wikipedia





Carl Benn, The War of 1812 (Osprey, 2002)


George Robert Gleig, A Narrative of the Campaigns of the British Army: at Washington, Baltimore, and New Orleans by an officer (John Murray, 1821)


Donald R. Hickey, The War of 1812: A Forgotten Conflict (University of Illinois Press, 1989)


Reginald Horsman, The Causes of the War of 1812 (Various publishers, 1962)


Reginald Horsman, The Diplomacy of the New Republic, 1776-1815 (Harlan Davidson, 1985)


Lawrence Kaplan, Entangling Alliances with None: American Foreign Policy in the Age of Jefferson (Kent State University Press, 1987)


Andrew Lambert, The Challenge: Britain Against America in the Naval War of 1812 (Faber and Faber, 2012)


Jon Latimer, 1812: War with America (Harvard University Press, 2007)


Bradford Perkins, The Creation of a Republican Empire, 1776-1865 (Cambridge University Press, 1993)


Leonard Sadosky, Revolutionary Negotiations: Indians, Empires, and Diplomats in the Founding of America (University of Virginia Press, 2009)


J. C. A. Stagg, The War of 1812: Conflict for a Continent (Cambridge University Press, 2012)


Alan Taylor, The Civil War of 1812: American Citizens, British Subjects, Irish Rebels and Indian Allies (Knopf, 2010)



  • Thu 31 Jan 2013 09:00
  • Thu 31 Jan 2013 21:30

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