Remembering the War
Both of these sources contextualize the war as part of the United States’ national history.
Emma Willard (1787-1870), an early educator of women and advocate for their intellectual abilities, published geography and history textbooks. This volume concludes with maps of the main locations of the War of 1812: Detroit, New Orleans, the Niagara region, the Chesapeake, and the St. Lawrence/Champlain area. By ending the book in this way Willard signaled the conflict’s importance to the young nation’s historical narrative.
In contrast, Thomas O’Connor (1770-1855) offered a popular, stridently nationalist telling of the war. He portrayed it as “the second struggle against the same enemy,” suggesting that its purpose was to resolve unfinished business with Great Britain from the American Revolution.