Cover

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Half Title, Title Page, Copyright, In Memoriam

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Contents

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pp. vii-viii

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Preface and Acknowledgments

Laura Lyons McLemore

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pp. ix-x

Americans sing the “Star-Spangled Banner” with gusto at all sorts of events, from commencement ceremonies to baseball games. Phrases like “our country right or wrong,” “Don’t give up the ship!,” and “We have met the enemy and they are ours” have become standards in American culture. ...

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Introduction

Laura Lyons McLemore

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pp. 1-9

The summer of 1811 found US President James Madison between a rock, Great Britain, and a hard place, France. War between the two European powers had reignited in 1803 and caught the neutral United States in the middle. The most critical problems were commercial and maritime. The United States was the world’s largest neutral shipper. ...

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1. “What We Know That Ain’t So”: Myths of the War of 1812

Donald R. Hickey

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pp. 10-27

The title of this essay is taken from a longer quotation that is typically rendered something like this: “It isn’t what we don’t know that gives us trouble; it’s what we know that ain’t so.” In other words, if we think we know something, we do not question it, and this unquestioning acceptance may cause trouble for us if the “truth” turns out to be false. ...

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2. “I Owe to Britain a Debt of Retaliatory Vengeance”: Assessing Andrew Jackson’s Hatred of the British

Mark R. Cheathem

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pp. 28-55

In the course of researching his biography of Andrew Jackson, James Parton related anecdotes about Old Hickory told to him as he traveled across the country in the late 1850s. Some of the more sensational stories came from residents of the Waxhaws region, the area along the North Carolina–South Carolina border where Jackson spent his childhood and early adolescence. ...

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3. “The Dreams of Empire”: The War of 1812 in an International Context

Alexander Mikaberidze

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pp. 56-78

Often labeled a “forgotten war,” the War of 1812 has traditionally received little attention in histories of the United States and is largely ignored by historians of Britain and its empire. Yet, the War of 1812, between Britain, the world’s leading empire, and its former colonies, the now undefended United States of America, was to be of great importance to the fate of North America. ...

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4. Objects of Scorn: Remembering African Americans and the War of 1812

Gene Allen Smith

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pp. 79-99

The War of 1812, described by the American historian Donald Hickey as a “forgotten conflict,” represented a major watershed in both the history of Anglo-American relations and the history of North American racial relations.1 While historians have scrutinized virtually every official action that drove the two nations to war, the story of black participation in the conflict generally has not been remembered. ...

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5. In Defense of Liberty: The Battalion d’Orleans and Its Battle for New Orleans

Paul Gelpi

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pp. 100-115

While minister to France, Thomas Jefferson wrote to James Madison that “the people . . . are the only sure reliance for the preservation of our liberty.”1 As president, Jefferson recognized the necessity of an army, distrusted a permanent military establishment,2 and relied on the American people to defend their nation’s liberty. ...

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6. Lessons Learned from the War of 1812 for the US Military in the Twenty-First Century

Blake Dunnavent

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pp. 116-128

Freshmen students every semester ask why we study history. It is pointless, they say, anxious to get right into their major fields of studies and cease focusing on ancient battles, politics, and economics. And by ancient students mean everything before the late 1990s. In a twenty-first-century global environment, preoccupied with technological innovation, ...

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7. One Hundred Years of Hickory and Cotton Bales: The Battle of New Orleans Centennial Celebration

Joseph F. Stoltz III

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pp. 129-149

The monument made for an impressive sight: a one-hundred-foot tower of marble that shone brightly in the crisp winter air. Only a decade earlier, the Chalmette Monument had sat half-finished and nearly forgotten in a cow pasture. Now, in January 1915, it stood overlooking the fifteen thousand spectators gathered around its base. ...

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8. Continually Heroic: Portraying Andrew Jackson through Classical and Contemporary Heroic Devices

Leslie Gregory Gruesbeck

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pp. 150-169

Prior to the Battle of New Orleans in 1815, Andrew Jackson was not a man whose image was widely recognized. He was noted as a military figure, having made his reputation as an Indian fighter and backwoods lawyer. The public was aware through talk that General Jackson was a man of great will who was sometimes given to great temper, ...

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9. The Battle of New Orleans in Popular Music and Culture

Tracey E. W. Laird

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pp. 170-186

In 1959, Johnny Horton’s version of “The Battle of New Orleans” reached the top of Billboard’s Hot 100 singles chart, and it remains among the top US popular songs of the twentieth century.1 While many of the battle’s historical details fall away, the lyrics communicate the gusto and attitude of a band of American underdogs whose strategy and skill sent their foes “runnin’ on down the Mississippi to the Gulf of Mexico.” ...

Bibliography

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pp. 187-204

Contributors

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pp. 205-208

Index

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pp. 209-212