May 30, 2012 Ohio Histore-news header image with image-mapped links to various OHS web pages Link to Ohio Historical Society Enews page, Ohio Histore-news, March 2012 Link to Ohio Historical Society Enews sign-up page, Subscribe Link to Ohio Historical Society Programs page, Programs Link to Ohio Historical Society Get Involved page, Get Involved Link to Ohio Historical Society Exhibits page, Exhibits Link to Ohio Historical Society Calendar page, Events Link to Ohio Historical Society Enews Archive page, Archive Link to Ohio Historical Society Home page, Ohio History
spacer

Landing page A photos Bicentennial Starts June 18
A War of 1812 Primer

Quick! What do you know about the War of 1812? If you’re like many Ohioans, you may not know as much as you ought to considering Ohio's importance in the war. With the War of 1812 bicentennial getting underway in June, now's a perfect time to brush up.

A Quick Overview
Despite the name, the War of 1812 did not begin and end in 1812. It went on for nearly three years, from 1812 until 1815. Fought against Great Britain, it was our first major war as a new nation and Ohio -- especially northwest Ohio -- was a key battleground. The war paved the way for expanded settlement and the growth of Ohio into the state we know today. It was a War of 1812 battle -- the Battle of Fort McHenry -- that inspired our national anthem. Click here for more background about the War of 1812 from the Ohio Historical Society's Ohio History Central website.

Right in Your Own Backyard
Although battles took place in many other states, Ohio was central to the action and reminders of the War of 1812 are everywhere. Here are some you can visit, all within a few hours of home:

Fort Meigs in Perrysburg (a community named for Oliver Hazard Perry, who defeated the British in the Battle of Lake Erie on September 10, 1813) is a War of 1812 battlefield with a reconstructed 1813 fort where you can see firsthand what life was like for soldiers and citizens during the war. In the adjacent visitors center and museum you'll find War of 1812 artifacts and exhibits about Ohio's role in the war. Two victories at Fort Meigs marked the turning point in the western theater of war for the Americans and ushered in a series of American victories which ultimately secured the Great Lakes in American control. Learn more at fortmeigs.org.

Perry's Victory and International Peace Memorial at Put-in-Bay on South Bass Island commemorates Oliver Hazard Perry's victory over the British in the Battle of Lake Erie -- among the most significant battles of the war to take place in Ohio. From an observation deck atop the 352-foot tall monument you can appreciate the strategic location of Ohio's Lake Erie Islands between the U.S. and Canada and see the spot where this decisive naval battle played out. In the nearby visitors center you can learn more about the story of the Battle of Lake Erie. Get details on visiting Perry's Victory and International Peace Memorial at nps.gov/pevi/index.htm.

Nine miles northwest of Wapakoneta along State Route 198 in Auglaize County, you'll find the site of Fort Amanda -- one in a series of War of 1812 forts across western Ohio -- today marked by a tall granite obelisk built in 1915. Click here to learn more about visiting the monument marking the site of Fort Amanda.

On the lawn of Birchard Public Library at 423 Croghan St. in downtown Fremont, several monuments and markers identify the site of the August 1-2, 1813, Battle of Fort Stephenson.

At the Harrison Tomb in North Bend near Cincinnati you can see the final resting place of William Henry Harrison, commander of the Army of the Northwest during the War of 1812, who went on to become ninth president of the United States. Outdoor displays tell the story of Harrison and a 60-foot tall marble memorial completed in 1922 marks the site of his tomb. Click here to learn more.

Many More Sites Are Identified With Ohio Historical Markers
More than 90 of the familiar brown-and-gold Ohio Historical Markers commemorate people, places and events associated with the War of 1812. For the full list, visit remarkableohio.org and search on "War of 1812," where you can also map War of 1812 markers in Ohio. Here's a sampling of what you’ll find (click on the links to visit and read each marker):

Ashland County
Frontier Violence During the War of 1812

Greentown Delaware Village

Auglaize County
Fort Amanda

Darke County
Site of Fort Nesbit (Nisbet)

Tecumseh

Defiance County
Spemica Lawba / Johnny Logan

Tale of Ensign James Liggett / Maj. Adam Charles Muir, 41st Regiment of Foot (Marks the southernmost point of British invasion into Ohio during the War of 1812)

Fort Winchester

Winchester's Camp #2

Winchester's Camp #3 / Fort Starvation

Greene County
Birthplace of Tecumseh

Hamilton County
William Henry Harrison

Hancock County
Fort Necessity / William Hull Memorial Park

Site of Fort Findlay

Hardin County
Fort McArthur Cemetery

Hull's Trail

Marion County
Harrison Military Road, War of 1812

Jacob's Well

The "Old Blockhouse" Site

Miami County
Brigadier General John Webb

Montgomery County
Brigadier General Edmund Munger

Ottawa County
First Battle Site

Gibraltar Island

Portage County
Benjamin Tappan Jr. (1773-1857)

Richland County
Johnny Appleseed's Run for Reinforcements

Ross County
Camp Bull

Sandusky County
Fort Stephenson

Seneca County
Camp Ball

Wood County
17th Infantry Regiment

Army Lodge No. 24 Free and Accepted Masons

William Henry Harrison's Encampment

War of 1812 Veterans Rest in Many Cemeteries
Many older cemeteries throughout Ohio are final resting places for War of 1812 veterans. Watch for markers identifying known War of 1812 graves when visiting cemeteries in your area. The Ohio Society, United States Daughters of 1812, has an online index to War of 1812 soldiers who are buried in Ohio. Find it at ohiodaughters1812.org/ohio1812/graveindex/.

Fort Recovery Museum Hosts War of 1812 Speaker Series
The Ohio Historical Society's Fort Recovery State Museum in Fort Recovery, Ohio, hosts a War of 1812 Speaker Series this summer. Sunday, June 10, hear Auburn University Professor of History Adam Jortner, author of Gods of Prophetstown: The Battle of Tippecanoe and the Holy War for the American Frontier. For details and other upcoming programs as they are announced, visit fortrecoverymuseum.com.

Statewide Observance Begins June 18
On Monday, June 18, 2012, the 200th anniversary of the date when the United States declared war on Great Britain, the Ohio War of 1812 Bicentennial Commission launches a statewide commemoration of the War of 1812 Bicentennial with a ceremony raising a 15-star flag at the Statehouse in Columbus and similar ceremonies throughout Ohio. To learn more about the War of 1812 and the bicentennial observance, visit the Ohio War of 1812 Bicentennial Commission website at warof1812.ohio.gov, where you'll also find a calendar of upcoming events including Chillicothe During the War of 1812 July 21-22, the Fort Jennings Bicentennial August 17-19, and an 1812 Military Encampment near Marblehead September 22-23, 2012, commemorating the 200th anniversary of first battle of the War of 1812 fought on Ohio soil.

Ohio History Center Exhibit
Wednesday, July 4, through Sunday, Dec. 31, 2012, see the exhibit The War of 1812: Ohio on the Front Line in the Spotlight Gallery at the Ohio History Center in Columbus, featuring artifacts and archival materials showcasing Ohio's pivotal place in the War of 1812 and telling the stories of individual soldiers. For more information call 800.686.6124 or 614.297.2535.

National Observance
Find a War of 1812 timeline and links to more historic places associated with the War of 1812 in the United States and Canada at visit1812.com.

Photo of a detail of the painting 'Perry's Victory' by Ohio artist William Powell, depicting the Battle of Lake Erie. It hangs in the Statehouse Rotunda in Columbus. Photo of reenactors portraying War of 1812 soldiers at Fort Meigs firing a cannon. Photo of a 19th-century black-and-white engraved portrait of Commodore Oliver Hazard Perry. Photo of the stone obelisk built in 1915 to mark the site of Fort Amanda near Wapakoneta. Photo of a gravestone reading "U.S. Soldier, War of 1812" at the site of Fort Amanda. Photo of an Ohio Historical Marker on the grounds of the Birchard Public Library in Fremont marking the site of Fort Stephenson. Photo of a portrait of William Henry Harrison, commander of the Army of the Northwest during the War of 1812. Photo of the monument marking the site of the tomb of Brig. Gen. William Henry Harrison in North Bend, near Cincinnati. Photo of an engraved portrait of Shawnee military and political leader Tecumseh. Ohio War of 1812 Bicentennial logo.
spacer
The Ohio Historical Society is a nonprofit organization that serves as the state's partner
in preserving and interpreting Ohio's history, archaeology and natural history. Link to Ohio Historical Society Twitter page, Follow us on Twitter Link to Ohio Historical Society Facebook page, Find us on Facebook Link to Ohio Historical Society Home page