The Civil War of 1812: American Citizens, British Subjects, Irish Rebels, & Indian Allies Hardcover – Deckle Edge, Oct 12 2010
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“Remarkable and deeply researched. . . . Taylor masterfully captures the strangeness of this war.”
—Gordon S. Wood, The New York Review of Books
“Easily the most sophisticated book ever written about a conflict that is often either neglected or seriously misunderstood. . . . Taylor’s discussions of diplomatic and political maneuvering are woven with military set-pieces into a powerful narrative. . . . [This] book affirms his gifts for prodigious research.”
—The Wall Street Journal
“Credit Taylor with blowing most of the dust off America’s most forgotten war. This is history with a capital H.”
—The Seattle Times
“A truly spellbinding narrative. Unlike other books on the War of 1812, [Taylor’s] is about the hearts and minds of the people who planned it, fought it and lived through it. Almost every page brings a revelation.”
—The Toronto Star
“In this deeply researched and clearly written book, [Taylor] tells the riveting story of a war that redefined North America.”
—The Washington Times
“Comprehensive. . . . Taylor’s account of a land war that roughly divided people with a common culture and heritage provides a new dimension for an understanding of 1812.”
—The Boston Globe
“An impressively accessible history. . . . A perceptively nuanced take on a war often forgotten or misunderstood. . . . Taylor offers persuasive arguments, a lively narrative.”
—Richmond Times Dispatch
“Taylor gives a fascinating account of the war and shows its importance to the fragile new republic in a book filled with stories about the people who instigated, commanded and fought in the conflict.”
—The Associated Press
“Taylor serves up a corrective in [this] fact-laden account. . . . Nicely captures the confusion of a ‘minor’ war with major consequences.”
—The Newark Star-Ledger
“Taylor’s beautifully written book offers a War of 1812 that’s no longer an insignificant afterthought to the American Revolution, but its final, decisive act.”
“As is his talented wont, Taylor puts the war into perspective, positing that it redefined the North American continent.”
—Asbury Park Press (New Jersey)
“Thoroughly researched. . . . Taylor illuminates an arena generally omitted from military histories of the war. Battles and campaigns do connect his account, however, which will stand history collections in good stead for a very long while.”
From the Trade Paperback edition.
About the Author
Born and raised in Maine, Alan Taylor teaches American and Canadian history at the University of California, Davis. His books include The Divided Ground, Writing Early American History, American Colonies, and William Cooper’s Town, which won the Bancroft and Pulitzer prizes for American history. He also serves as a contributing editor to The New Republic.
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Top Customer Reviews
Americans tend to remember Andrew Jackson's victory at New Orleans, which in fact took place after the Peace had been signed. The Americans won the peace, that Taylor carefully explains. The losers were the Indians. Tecumseh, the charismatic Swannee chief had managed to build an alliance of the Indian nations. This fell apart when he was killed in this war (as a consequence of the loss of the Battle of Lake Erie) and the British were unable to give the the Indians the support they needed if the British grand strategy of a balance of power between the British, the American, and Indian nations was to be maintained. The United States was able to pick off the Indian peoples one by one after this war.
Still the fact remains that the United States attempted to invade and conquer Canada and were repulsed at every effort. Not a square foot of Canada was taken.
Taylor's thesis is that it was really a civil war like the American Revolution.Read more ›
Taylor does an outstanding job, describing the Canadian and US political scene. Most of Upper Canada was populated by American Loyalists. The Loyalists tended to their farms, and were ruled by a British elite government. The US was split between the Federalist Party and Jefferson`s Republicans. The Federalist did not support an invasion of Canada. The political divisions, end up throwing the Americans into a bungled war plan. In fact a George Costanza type as Secretary of War, probably would have meant a quick victory for the US. The US war planners seem to do the exact opposite, of everything that is needed to crush Upper Canada.
The weak area of the book, is Taylor`s battle descriptions. Taylor does not seem to be much of a military historian. The reader gets a rather brief over view of most battles. The great Indian warrior leader Tecumseh, does not receive any attention. The larger military picture, also seems to be glossed over as well. The war in Europe and the North American battles outside of the Upper Canada area, are not discussed in any great detail.
Taylor then concludes how the war shaped the political landscape of North America. The Americans got a secure border, and were able to continue their westward expansion. He feels the war helped solidify a sense of America, and a budding Republic. In Upper Canada, the seeds of rebellion were planted.Read more ›
Most recent customer reviews
As a Canadian, I was convinced that the British/Canadians won the War of 1812, based on the fact that the US was the aggressor nation and they did not gain anything after the war... Read morePublished on June 5 2014 by Phillip Blancher
Most Americans and Canadians know little or nothing about
the War of 1812. Taylor presents it as the second phase of
the American Revolution - or as he really states -... Read more
In exquisite painful detail Taylor charts exactly what happened. Very readable style about this war which really the culmination of the American Revolution. Fascinating.Published on Dec 23 2013 by northern dragon queen
Little is known about the War of 1812 by Canadians such as I
and I found the book very to be a wealth of information and gave me knownledge about Canadian history
A fascinating overview of the social and economic conditions that lead up to the war. After reading this book its easy to understand the famous american quote that it was a "mere... Read morePublished on Sept. 30 2012 by Len
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