America's Declaration of War against Britain

America's Declaration of War against Britain

Upset with Britain's adverse actions against the United States, especially for impressing Americans aboard merchant ships to serve as British sailors in the Napoleonic Wars, President Madison summoned the 12th Congress—better known as the "War Congress"—to Washington in early November, 1811.

In his annual message to Congress, Madison reported on Britain's "hostile inflexibility." He observed that America's former mother country was "trampling on rights which no independent nation can relinquish."

Congress convened on November 4th to consider whether America should declare war against the United Kingdom. News reports of the time are interesting. As quoted in The War of 1812: A Forgotten Conflict, at page 28, The Boston Chronicle observed:

Never did the American Congress assemble under circumstances of greater interest and responsibility.

The Salem Register declared:

The people, the times and the government all require DECISION.

In this facsimile image, we see a draft Declaration of War, issued on November 4, 1811, by the Congress of the United States. It signaled that war was likely to occur if Britain did not end its adverse actions against the U.S.

Click on the image for a better view.

Media Credits

Image online, courtesy U.S. National Archives.



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"America's Declaration of War against Britain" AwesomeStories.com. Oct 07, 2013. Jun 05, 2020.
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