Why was the war of 1812 favored by the South and West and opposed by New England? Includes a bibliogrophy.

Essay by lecHigh School, 12th gradeA, February 2003

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Why was the war of 1812 favored by the south and west and opposed by New England?

The War of 1812 is one of the most complex wars of the United States. The war lasted for over two years, and while it ended as it had started, in stalemate, it was in fact a war that once and for all confirmed American Independence. The United States declared War on Great Britain on June 12, 1812. The war was declared as a result of long simmering disputes with Great Britian. The central dispute was based on the impressing of American soldiers by the British. The British had previously attacked the USS Chesapeake and nearly caused a war two year earlier (Horsman, 1-4). In addition, disputes continued with Great Britain over the Northwest Territories and the border with Canada. Finally, the attempt of Great Britain to impose a blockade on France during the Napoleonic Wars was a constant source of conflict with the United States (Boorstin-Kelly, 198-200).

The war was favored by the south and west for many reasons. When nationalism, or "the sentiment that binds people to their country and makes them feel that from it all their blessings flow" (Boorstin-Kelly, 198), swept through the south and west, new representatives came about. These representatives wanted "firm defense of our national rights" (Boorstin-Kelly, 200) and became known as the "War Hawks". These leaders didn't have much experience in public affairs, but they were able to elect Henry Clay of Kentucky as Speaker of the House. These "War Hawks" cared most about the Western frontier than anything else and wanted as much land as they could get. Indians, who were being incited by the British in Canada, were blocking these lands (12th Congress, 94). This led to many...