War of 1812 bicentennial commemoration planned

Submitted by Catherine Long (diggergirl77@gmail.com)

What does the USA’s national anthem have in common with Georgia’s Archaeology Month 2012?

The War of 1812 is the focus of this year’s Archaeology Month theme in honor of the bicentennial celebration. According to Gerald Judson Smith Jr.’s article in the New Georgia Encyclopedia there were three main focus points for Georgia’s role in the War of 1812: the Creek War (1813–1814), the British blockade, and the British occupation of St. Mary’s and Cumberland Island (1814–1815). General John Floyd commanded the troops from Georgia. He was directed to build forts and destroy Creek villages. Fort Hawkins and Fort Mitchell are two examples. The battles also occurred in Alabama. Along the coast Georgians sought to defend themselves from attack by rebuilding Fort Morris and fortifying the battery at Point Peter.

Fort McHenry from CL

Fort McHenry in this century.

While Georgia was having its own conflicts other states were defending their harbors as well. From September 12–14, 1814 the Battle of Baltimore was waged in Maryland at Fort McHenry. Following this battle, Francis Scott Key was inspired by the large flag still standing after battle. What started as a poem was later put to music and became the national anthem of the United States as it was proclaimed by Congress on March 3, 1931. These words continue to pay tribute to the battles that have occurred to continue to preserve American freedom. Who knew such an inspiring song would arise from this conflict? To see the words from the Star-Spangled Banner please click here.

We hope you will join us in commemorating the Bicentennial of the War of 1812 by attending the SGA’s Spring Meeting on May 19th at the Georgia Gwinnett College campus (map below). This will be a great opportunity to learn of the state of Georgia during that time. Presentations will focus on the research of the relationships between the Creek and the frontier people and feature research on fortifications from the period.

Special thanks to Jim D’Angelo for the inspiration of this Weekly Ponder from the January Gwinnett Archaeological Research Society (a Chapter of the SGA) meeting. Read all stories on this website about Georgia’s 2012 Archaeology Month by clicking here. Read all stories on this website about the SGA’s 2012 Spring Meeting by clicking here.

Where to find it