HIS 115 Week 5 Assignment 1
The War of 1812 has been called the second American war for independence from Great Britain. While the U.S. failed in its main goals for this war, the War of 1812 did legitimate the nationhood of the nascent U.S., and it gained the country new respect from other nations. The status of America as independent from Great Britain was confirmed by this war, and afterwards American nationalism surged. America tried to preserve their neutrality and their rights by stopping all foreign trade, which had diverse effects. This led to a huge drop in American export sand significantly hurt the national economy. Americans felt that they had stood by and watched Great Britain violate their rights for years – declaring war was another chance to affirm American independence. Neither side scored a conclusive victory in The War of 1812, though the U.S. did achieve significant victories at battles such as Lake Erie, Fort McHenry, and the Battle of New Orleans. Both sides signed the Treaty of Ghent in 1814, which did not end the war, but did resolve the prior situations that had helped to cause the war. The war underlined the nation's need to strengthen the federal government and improve their defense. The war also inducted the Star Spangled Banner as the national anthem. As a return to peace and the increase in American confidence followed the War of 1812, this post-war optimism is referred to as the Era of Good Feelings. American unity and nationalism began to make itself known in diverse and unexpected areas such as the national culture, economy, and foreign policy. Freedom of governance was encouraged as political conflict waned.
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