Lessons on the War of 1812

Some of the oldest examples of lines of fortification of the War of 1812, such as one of the powder magazines at Fort Pike at The Rigolets, La., are crumbling and washing away as Louisiana’s coastline erodes. But then again, I guess it’s not surprising since the war marks its 200th anniversary this year.

The year 2012 has many people reflecting on the 150th anniversary of the Civil War, but another armed conflict also has its anniversary this year — the War of 1812.

Sometimes referred to as the “Second War of Independence,” this fight against the Brits officially started on June 18, 1812, and lasted for several years.

Not much is devoted to the War of 1812 in school, so this week’s trivia might be a little challenging.

We have Nikki Drake as our current champion going up against Rob Brunson, an amateur fisherman.


1. Who was the U.S. President during the War of 1812?

2. What type of “gangs” recruited U.S. sailors by force into the British navy, which would become one of the reasons Congress declared war?

3. Originally called “Defense of Fort Henry,” this poem-turned-song is now known as ...?

4. Who was the leader of the Shawnee and a large tribal confederacy that allied with the British against the United States during the War of 1812?

5. What nickname did the USS Constitution receive after a naval battle with the HMS Guerriere?

6. Name one iconic building that was burned to the ground as a result of the Battle of Bladensburg.

7. What future president of the U.S. was a major general during the War of 1812?

8. What treaty signaled the end of the war between the U.S. and Britain?

9. On Jan. 8, 1815, (ironically, after the treaty had been signed), the final conflict of the War took place just outside of what American city?

10. Who else were the British at war with in 1812?


1. Monroe

2. Union Jack. Named for the flag.

3. Is it “The Star-Spangled Banner”?

4. Geronimo

5. Old Ironsides

6. I remember the White House had been burned at some point.

7. Jackson

8. (laughing) I really don’t know. This is a lot harder than last week’s.

9. Baltimore?

10. France, I think.


1. James Madison

2. They were “press gangs.”

3. Francis Scott Key’s “Star-Spangled Banner.”

4. You got me.

5. Old Ironsides

6. It was the burning of Washington, D.C. So the White House and the U.S. Capitol building.

7. Andrew Jackson

8. Not 100 percent sure, but it might’ve been the treaty of Paris.

9. New Orleans

10. Well, it was during the Napoleonic Wars, where England was fighting to contain Napoleon from taking over the world.


Head2Head was impressed with the number of correct answers in this week’s trivia, having wrongly assumed both contestants might struggle with the subject matter. Despite the valiant efforts, there is only one Head2Head trivia champ, and this week it’s Rob who emerges victorious. See you next week.


1. James Madison

2. “Press gangs”

3. “The Star-Spangled Banner”

4. Tecumseh

5. Old Ironsides

6. White House, U.S. Capitol

7. Andrew Jackson

8. Treaty of Ghent

9. New Orleans

10. France, Napoleon