October 18, 2012
Contact: University Relations
Other conflicts on American soil, especially the Civil War, may be better known to local history buffs—but arguably, no war before or since has had a greater and more direct impact on Baltimore than did the War of 1812. The city was bombarded, its harbor and Fort McHenry the center of intense fighting, and, of course, that battle provided the vivid images captured by Francis Scott Key in "The Star-Spangled Banner," later named the national anthem of the United States.
What happened in the War of 1812? Why did the British return to tangle with their former colonies a second time, more than three decades after the Americans first declared independence? How did such a young nation survive this fight? What did we (and the British, the French, the Irish and other nations) learn from this bloody, brutal conflict?
Beginning next month and continuing into 2013, the University of Baltimore will host a series of engaging public discussions about the causes and effects of the War of 1812. From little-known facts about the war to the ways it impacted Americans of all kinds—including those who had families living on both the U.S. and Canadian sides of the border—the series will shed light on a period of history worth revisiting for its politics, economics, color and message of reckoning and reconciliation.
All events in the following schedule are free and open to the public. Look for more details about each event approximately two weeks prior.
"What You Should Probably Know About the War of 1812 (But Probably Don't)"
Friday, Nov. 2, 7:30 p.m., in the Langsdale Library Auditorium, 1420 Maryland Ave.
Don Hickey, professor of history at Wayne State College (Neb.), author and a scholar widely considered to be the "dean" of War of 1812 historians, will lecture based on his most recent book. His book, The War of 1812: The Forgotten Conflict, has become the standard work on this historical event. The lecture is based on Hickey's most recent book of the same title.
"How We Beat the Yankees: British and Canadian Eyewitnesses of the War of 1812"
Thursday, Dec. 6, 7:30 p.m., in a location to be announced
Prof. Don E. Graves is an authority on the War of 1812 from the Canadian perspective. He has taught military history and served as a staff historian for the Canadian Directorate of History and Heritage. He has also published extensively on the major battles of the War of 1812, including Crylser's Farm, Lundy's Lane and Chippawa. His book on the Battle of Plattsburgh is forthcoming. Graves will offer a spirited explanation of why and how the Canadians won the War of 1812.
"Free Trade and Sailors' Rights: The Odyssey of the Essex–Captain David Porter's Invasion of the Pacific in the War of 1812"
Friday, Feb. 22, 2013, 7:30 p.m., tentatively scheduled for the Maryland Historical Society in Baltimore
Prof. Paul Gilje, a George Lynn Cross Research Professor at the University of Oklahoma, has written extensively on early American history and has also served as the president of the Society for Historians of the Early American Republic. He is currently researching the question of sailors' rights and memory in the War of 1812, and his lecture will be based on his forthcoming book of the same title.
"The Civil War of 1812: American Citizens, British Subjects, Irish Rebels, and Indian Allies"
Tuesday, April 9, 2013, 7:30 p.m., Langsdale Library Auditorium
Alan Taylor, professor of history at the University of California, Davis, where he specializes in early American history and Canadian history, will expound on the effect of the War of 1812 on common people and on families whose members lived on both sides of the Canadian-U.S. border. His latest book, which has the same title as his lecture, was published in 2010 and received rave reviews.
Further information about the series is available from the Division of Legal, Ethical & Historical Studies, at 410.837.5323.
The University of Baltimore is a member of the University System of Maryland and comprises the School of Law, the Yale Gordon College of Arts and Sciences, the College of Public Affairs and the Merrick School of Business.