Perhaps no conflict in American history is more important yet more overlooked and misunderstood than the War of 1812. At the climax of the war, inspired by the defeat of Napoleon in early 1814 and the perceived illegality of the Louisiana Purchase, the British devised a plan to launch a three-pronged attack against the Northern, Eastern, and Southern US borders. Concealing preparations for this strike by engaging in negotiations in Ghent, Britain meanwhile secretly issued orders to seize New Orleans and wrest control of the Mississippi and the lands west of the river. They further instructed British commander General Edward Pakenham not to cease his attack if he heard rumors of a peace treaty. Great Britain even covertly installed government officials within military units with the intention of immediately taking over administrative control once the territory was conquered.
Far from being simply an unnecessary epilogue to the War of 1812, the Battle of New Orleans firmly secured for the United States the territory acquired through the Louisiana Purchase. Drez offers a compelling account of this pivotal moment in American history.
The book is published by Louisiana State University Press.
"Ron Drez has written the single most important book on the Battle of New Orleans. His prodigious research pays off big. For the first time we understand the magnitude of Andrew Jackson's grand moment. A terrific read!" (Douglas Brinkley, author of The Wilderness Warrior)
"With the riveting narrative skill and psychological insight of the most passionate thriller writer, Drez takes us on an unforgettable excursion into the American past that shines the light of his prodigious research onto the intricately entangled political and military issues behind one of the most pivotal - and least understood - wars in American history." (Kenneth Atchity, former Fulbright professor of American Studies to the University of Bologna)
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A thorough defense of the 1812 war
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- Rob Bateman