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War of 1812

Johns Hopkins Books on the War of 1812

From the moment the United States declared war on Great Britain in 1812 until the Treaty of Ghent was ratified in 1815, Americans courageously fought to preserve their recently won independence from the British in the War of 1812. Across the country, celebrations and memorials are planned to commemorate the bicentennial of the war, and we are proud to announce a new series on the subject: Johns Hopkins Books on the War of 1812. This fine collection of titles includes classic works alongside recent scholarship on America’s forgotten conflict.

Special 25% discount on JHUP books on the War of 1812! Simply add books to your shopping cart and enter code HWAR at checkout for the discount.

Native Memoirs from the War of 1812Native Memoirs from the War of 1812
Black Hawk and William Apess

Carl Benn

Native peoples played major roles in the War of 1812 as allies of both the United States and Great Britain, but few wrote about their conflict experiences. Two famously wrote down their stories: Black Hawk, the British-allied chief of the still-independent Sauks from the upper Mississippi, and American soldier William Apess, a Christian convert from the Pequots who lived on a reservation in Connecticut.

Rockets' Red GlareThe Rockets' Red Glare
An Illustrated History of the War of 1812

Donald R. Hickey and Connie D. Clark

This engagingly told and richly illustrated history invites readers to travel back in time and imagine what it would have been like to live through the War of 1812. The thrilling stories and stunning illustrations are sure to capture the imagination of anyone interested in the fascinating history of America’s forgotten conflict.

Travel Guide to the War of 1812 in the Chesapeake
A Travel Guide to the War of 1812 in the Chesapeake
Eighteen Tours in Maryland, Virginia, and the District of Columbia

Ralph E. Eshelman

Welcome to War of 1812 tidewater country. From Maryland to Virginia to the District of Columbia, this portable guidebook points readers to the War of 1812's most important battlefields and historic sites. Tourists can step back in time as they travel the same roads and waterways that American and British troops did two centuries ago.


The War of 1812 in the ChesapeakeThe War of 1812 in the Chesapeake
A Reference Guide to Historic Sites in Maryland, Virginia, and the District of Columbia

Ralph E. Eshelman, Scott S. Sheads, and Donald R. Hickey

The War of 1812 between the United States and Great Britain was fought throughout nearly all of the country, but no theater of war suffered more than the Chesapeake Bay region. Featuring a comprehensive list of more than 800 of the war’s historical sites in Maryland, Virginia, and the District of Columbia, this book is an indispensable reference to America’s second great war for independence.

The Patuxent Naval Campaign in the War of 1812

Donald G. Shomette
foreword by Fred W. Hopkins, Jr.

The Royal Navy’s offensives in the Chesapeake Bay during the War of 1812 wreaked havoc on the small villages along its shores. Captain Joshua Barney, a rare American hero during the struggle, intrepidly led his Chesapeake Flotilla against the invaders, determined to contest their advance on the nation’s capital and drive them from the region. Shomette’s captivating history includes new information about Barney, his crew, and the mosquito fleet of gunboats and war barges that so valiantly fought the British.

Dawn's Early LightThe Dawn's Early Light
Walter Lord

Lord brings to life the remarkable events of the War of 1812—including the burning of Washington and the attack on Baltimore's Fort McHenry. He gives readers a dramatic account of how a new sense of national identity emerged from the smoky haze of what Francis Scott Key so lyrically called "the dawn's early light."

This reissue of The Dawn's Early Light celebrates the bicentennial of the Battle of Baltimore. Scott S. Sheads, a National Park Service ranger and specialist on the event, introduces the book, which will remain a popular favorite for years to come.

Coming in March 2014:

William Henry Harrison and the Conquest of the Ohio CountryWilliam Henry Harrison and the Conquest of the Ohio Country
Frontier Fighting in the War of 1812

David C. Skaggs

In his study of William Henry Harrison, David Curtis Skaggs sheds light on the role of citizen-soldiers in taming the wilderness of the old Northwest. Perhaps best known for the Whig slogan in 1840—"Tippecanoe and Tyler Too"—Harrison used his efforts to pacify Native Americans and defeat the British in the War of 1812 to promote a political career that eventually elevated him to the presidency.

This richly detailed work reveals how the military and Indian policies of the early republic played out on the frontier, freshly revisiting a subject central to American history: how white settlers tamed the west—and at what cost.


Other Books on the War of 1812

187 Things You Should Know about the War of 1812187 Things You Should Know about the War of 1812
An Easy Question-and-Answer Guide

Donald R. Hickey

The bicentennial of the War of 1812 is now upon us. With an engaging question-and-answer format, this book offers a concise and informative introduction to the War of 1812, clearing much of the fog that surrounds it.

Maryland Historical Society

In Full Glory ReflectedIn Full Glory Reflected
Discovering the War of 1812 in the Chesapeake

Ralph E. Eshelman and Burton K. Kummerow

All but forgotten by Americans, the War of 1812 (1812–1815) was a dramatic watershed for the young, groundbreaking United States Republic. Much of the fighting occurred in the Chesapeake region and this new book, In Full Glory Reflected, uncovers its gripping stories of devastating raids, heroic defense, gallant privateers, fugitive slaves, and threatened lands.
Maryland Historical Society


Events Calendar



10 September 2014, 6:30 pm 
Book Talk & Signing - 
The Battle of Baltimore: 
How our Harbor Helped Define America

With Marc Ferris (Star-Spangled Banner), Burt Kummerow (In Full Glory Reflected), and Ralph Eshelman (IFGR and Travel Guide to the War of 1812 in the Chesapeake) 
National Aquarium
Baltimore, MD

Ferris_jacketThe Battle of Baltimore in September 1814 was an uplifting victory for beleaguered America. Coming shortly after the British attack on Washington, D.C. and the torching of the Capitol and the White House, the success of Baltimore’s citizen soldiers hastened the war’s end, and famously inspired Francis Scott Key’s “The Star-Spangled Banner.” As tall ships return to the Inner Harbor for Baltimore’s bicentennial celebrations, join us for a special program exploring the history and legacy of the Battle of Baltimore, with a panel of historians and authors whose recent work has focused on the War ofTravel_Guide_cover1812 and its impact on American identity. A reception and book signing precedes the program. This event is hosted by Aquarium CEO John Racanelli and is co-sponsored by JHU’s Odyssey Program, the Maryland Historical Society, and National Aquarium’s Marjorie Lynn Bank Lecture Series. Book-signing at 6:30 p.m.; program at 7:00 p.m.

Admission: $15.00; register online through JHU's Odyssey Program (refer to session 918.088.91) or call 410-516-4842.


11 September 2014, 12:00 pm
Author Interview
 - Marc Ferris 
Star-Spangled Banner: The Unlikely Story of America's National Anthem 
Mid-Day with Dan Rodricks, WYPR, 88.1 FM


SSS logo

12-14 September 2014, 11:00 am to 8:00 pm
Book Sale at 
Star-Spangled Banner Spectacular
National Park Service Tent, Inner Harbor 
McKelden Square, Inner Harbor 
Baltimore, MD 

JHU Press will sell books related to the War of 1812 and host our authors for book signings in the National Park Service tent during the Star-Spangled Spectacular at Baltimore's Inner Harbor. Join us at the NPS tent in McKelden Square (at Pratt and Light Streets) to celebrate the bicentennial of the Battle of Baltimore and the writing of the Star-Spangled Banner!

Admission: Free. Visit Star-Spangled Spectacular for information.


13 September 2014, 9:15 am
Author Interview
 - Marc Ferris 
Star-Spangled Banner: The Unlikely Story of America's National Anthem 
Weekend News 
WBAL TV, Channel 11


Ferris_jacket13 September 2014, 6:00 pm 
Book Talk & Signing - 
Marc Ferris
Star-Spangled Banner: 
The Unlikely Story of America's National Anthem
The Ivy Bookshop
6080 Falls Rd
Baltimore, MD 21209

Book talk, performance, and signing by Marc Ferris at the Ivy during Baltimore's Star-Spangled weekend!

Admission: Free; call the Ivy at 410-377-2966 for information.



Additional Resources

Virtual book signing and panel discussion at the Abraham Lincoln Book Store in Chicago, featuring Donald Hickey and Connie Clark

Maryland War of 1812 Bicentennial Resources and Books

Donald Hickey speaks at the Detroit Historical Museum on War of 1812 Myths

General Society of the War of 1812

The Official War of 1812 Bicentennial Website