In honor of the upcoming Mississinewa 1812, the largest War of 1812 living history event in the United States, we’ve compiled a list of books that will help you learn more about the War of 1812 and this time period.
Second Floor Non-Fiction
1812: The War That Forged a Nation presents a sweeping narrative that emphasizes the struggle’s importance to America’s coming-of-age as a nation. Though frequently overlooked between the American Revolution and the Civil War, the War of 1812 did indeed span half a continent — from Mackinac Island to New Orleans, and Lake Champlain to Horseshoe Bend — and it paved the way for the conquest of the other half. During the War of 1812, the United States cast aside its cloak of colonial adolescence and — with both humiliating and glorious moments — found the fire that was to forge a nation.
Where We Lived: Discovering the Places We Once Called Home: The American Home from 1775-1840 (973.5 LAR)
The past has left behind only scattered clues that, on their own, provide little insight into how the people of early America lived and the details of their daily lives. The photographs in this book, the deeply informed narrative that accompanies them, and the eyewitness accounts of daily life that the author weaves throughout, provide a fresh perspective on our early American ancestors and the places they called home.
This book is about how their houses and their life in them, from the wealthy to the impoverished, from New York City to the small farms and plantations of the South, from coastal fishing towns to the Western frontier of Indiana and Kentucky. The stories focus on the remarkably vivid differences from one part of the country to the next, class and culture, and the realities of everyday life for American families.
Entangled in the Napoleonic conflicts on the European continent, the reasons for fighting the War of 1812 are far from clear. Once the conflict got underway, both the United States and Great Britain waged it in great confusion and finally concluded it inconclusively. Meanwhile, the war deeply divided American sentiment, possibly more than did any other war, including Vietnam.
With an overview essay providing historical background, seven essays on specific topics related to the war, biographies of the major players, ten important primary documents, and a timeline, this book will serve as an introduction to these events, both to provide a clear understanding of them and to supply the student with major historical interpretations of the war’s causes, progress, and consequences.
The Young United States, 1783-1830: A Time of Change and Growth, a Time of Learning Democracy, a Time of New Ways of Living, Thinking and Doing (973.9 TUN)
Describes the history, government, industries, schools, society, culture, and westward expansion during the first fifty years of United States independence. Extensive line drawings of dress, clothing style and more offer a great resource for reenactors and writers focusing on this often overlooked time period.
The Civil War of 1812: American Citizens, British Subjects, Irish Rebels and Indian Allies (973.52 TAY)
In this deeply researched and clearly written book, the Pulitzer Prize-winning historian Alan Taylor tells the riveting story of a war that redefined North America. During the early nineteenth century, Britons and Americans renewed their struggle over the legacy of the American Revolution. Soldiers, immigrants, settlers, and Indians fought in a northern borderland to determine the fate of a continent. Would revolutionary republicanism sweep the British from Canada? Or would the British empire contain, divide, and ruin the shaky American republic? Moving beyond national histories to examine the lives of common men and women, The Civil War of 1812 reveals an often brutal (sometimes comic) war and illuminates the tangled origins of the United States and Canada.
Discover the epic naval story of the war that threatened to undo our nation in 1812. Riveting firsthand accounts enliven this official sea-level view of the conflict that proved American naval prowess a force to be reckoned with. Explore historic documents, letters, ephemera, and artifacts, including fascinating finds from the Navy’s most recent underwater excavation of the war’s lost ships.
President Harry Truman called it the “silliest damn war we ever had.” Not long after the United States had gained its independence from Great Britain, the two nations went to war again, this time over disputes that could have been settled by diplomacy. Nevertheless, the conflict produced its share of heroic exploits, as well as the “Star Spangled Banner.
School Library Journal Review:
After providing brief background on the War of 1812, Kroll tells the story of how Francis Scott Key came to write the famous song. The narrative is appropriate for youngsters without being oversimplified. Andreasen’s over-sized, realistic oil paintings face text pages or go across double-page spreads. Backgrounds simulate vellum or parchment to add to the period atmosphere. A photograph of the original manuscript, music and verses of the song, and maps of Washington and the Battle of Baltimore are included, while an author’s note adds details on the history of the song and the war.
Accounts taken from letters, memoirs, & official reports highlight this well-illustrated history of the War of 1812 & its consequences.
Presents the full text of “The Star-Spangled Banner” in both its original version and in a translated version using everyday language. Describes the events that led to the creation of America’s national anthem and its significance through history