The War of 1812 Between America and Great Britain

The War of 1812 between America and Great Britain was one of the toughest battles fought by America after its independence. In December 1814, a peace treaty that finally put an end to the war was signed in Europe. By closely looking at the war, we find that even though the American’s did not want to be involved, they were forced to by a series of events that were happening at the time. By the time the war had ended in 1815, it had left lasting effects on both countries.

After the end of the American Revolution, the United States was not at ease due to the decision by Britain to continue inhabiting American land along the Great Lakes. The Napoleonic War between Britain and France heightened this resentment. During this war, both countries tried to block America from carrying out free trade in the region. Thomas Jefferson tried to initiate negotiation but it did not bear any fruit. Finally, the American congress decided to impose a ban on all goods coming from the two countries. However, this ended up hurting the Americans more than it did to their French and British counterparts. With no other option, the U.S was forced to go into war with Britain to force Great Britain to respect foreign trade.

Apart from the issue of trade, America had resentments on how Britain was behaving on the high seas. Over the years, Britain had remained a supreme entity in the seas. Although America had remained impassive in the warring between Britain and France, its ships were constantly denied from using the sea due to the regulations that Britain had set. Due to its neutrality, America believed that its maritime privileges were being dishonored. On top of this, Britain was in the habit of raiding American Merchant Ships and taking captive the British sailors working in them. In other cases, the British invaders would also take the Americans hostage. This act of repression on the seas greatly grieved the Americans hence leading to the war.

The third issue that led to the war was the uprising in the Northwest and Southwest frontiers. The Native Americans especially the Shawnee in Ohio and the Creek Indians in the Southwest frontier were aggressively resisting assimilation into America. America believed that their British counterparts were arming the Creek Indians for the sole purpose of causing an uprising that would prevent its expansion into Canada. Although this was not entirely true, it became an excuse for America to enter into war with Britain.

Although the war hurt America in many ways, it had some positive aspects to it. Because of the war, America gained great international respect after it was able to withstand Great Britain. The people’s morale also received a major boost after they defeated what was considered as one of the greatest military powers at the time. On top of this, America’s manufacturing capabilities were greatly improved during this period. The British had blocked the American coast causing a deficit of cotton cloth. This caused the Americans to create a cotton industry, which over the years has become one of the biggest in the world.

The 1812 war between the U.S and Britain was an affair that left lasting effects on both countries. The genesis of the war was a list of grievances that America held against the British. Although many of them were real, others like America’s belief that Britain was helping the Native Americans to resist America’s expansion were imaginary. Because of the war, America was able to gain international recognition and improve its cotton production industry.