War making and mythmaking go hand in hand in Hickey's analysis of the misconceptions, embellishments and falsehoods that continue to shape Americans' views of the War of 1812. In describing the complicated origins, conduct and outcome of the conflict, Wayne State College history professor Hickey shows how myth has helped construct a history that we can understand and accept. Three 19th-century writers in particular—British naval historian William James, American popularizer Benson Lossing and man of letters Henry Adams—promoted already familiar stories of the war. While Hickey investigates, analyzes and critiques a spectrum of legends about the war's roots, its campaigns and armed forces, and its military and political leadership, he's no mere debunker. Stories like Col. Henry Johnson's killing of Tecumseh in hand-to-hand combat survive his scrutiny. And Capt. James Lawrence did say, "Don't give up the ship"—though those were not his last words. But Jean Lafitte's role in the Battle of New Orleans is diminished to the advantage of his brother Pierre. And blacks played a long-neglected role on both sides. These are only a few of the revelations awaiting readers of this richly textured model of historical revisionism, which confirms Hickey's status as a leading scholar of the early national period. 10 photos. (Aug.)
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"Donald R. Hickey's unique study Don't Give Up the Ship!: Myths of the War of 1812 addresses the myths, half truths, and realities of the forgotten last Anglo-American conflict. . . . The book provides a starting point for those seeking further information regarding the conflict and it should take its rightful place on the bookshelves of all War of 1812 buffs and scholars."--Journal of the Early Republic
Very good history of the War of 1812 which doesn't have nearly as much written about it as books on our other wars. Read morePublished 6 months ago by W. B. McAfee
The author attacks some of the popular, but questionable stories of the War of 1812. If you don't know much about the War of 1812, this book is a goof place to start.Published 7 months ago by JiminOhio
This book examines myths and misconceptions about the War of 1812 and does a very excellent job of that. Read morePublished 7 months ago by Gene C. Armistead
Item by item review of the myths of the war. Specifics on what makes them myths and which are true and which are false and why.Published on May 28, 2013 by Denn