Ohio Statehouse to Host War of 1812 Bicentennial Ceremony
Free Commemoration to Take Place on Veterans Plaza
Columbus, Ohio –
The Capitol Square Review and Advisory Board and the Ohio National Guard have partnered to present a free public program to commemorate the 200th anniversary of the beginning of the War of 1812. The program will take place on Monday, June 18 at 11:30 a.m. on Veterans Plaza on the east side of the Capitol Square complex. In the event of inclement weather, the ceremony will take place in the Ohio Statehouse Rotunda. The presentation is free and open to the public.
The ceremony will include the reading of the declaration of war, raising of a 15 star U.S. flag on the Statehouse grounds and a “ringing of the bells for 1812” at noon in conjunction with the United States Daughters of 1812 nationwide event. The ceremony will be broadcast live on the Ohio Channel and Web streamed live on the Internet at www.ohiochannel.org.
The Ohio Statehouse Rotunda houses the painting, Perry’s Victory, which depicts a key battle of the War of 1812, The Battle of Lake Erie, in which Oliver Hazard Perry led the American forces to victory over the British. Perry’s flagship, the Lawrence, had caught fire and his crew suffered heavy casualties. The painting was the first piece of artwork commissioned by the state of Ohio for the new 1861 Statehouse.
The survivors, including Perry, rowed to another American ship, the Niagara, and continued the battle, outmaneuvering the British. Oliver Hazard Perry, commanding the American fleet, met up with the British off the Bass Islands in Lake Erie and soundly defeated them. This action effectively gave control of the lake to the Americans, and led to General William Henry Harrisons’ invasion of Canada. Perry is famous for his statement during the final stages of the battle, “We have met the enemy and they are ours.”
Ohio artist William Powell created the painting. But after completing it, Powell asked for three times the agreed-upon price, refusing to give up the painting. Instead, he exhibited the painting around the nation and received another commission for a similar piece which now hangs in the U.S. Capitol in Washington, D.C. Finally, the State of Ohio met Perry’s higher price, and the painting hangs in the Rotunda at the Ohio Statehouse.
About the War of 1812
In the War of 1812, the United States took on the greatest naval power in the world, Great Britain, in a conflict that would have an immense impact on the young country's future. Causes of the war included British attempts to restrict U.S. trade, the Royal Navy's impressment of American seamen and America's desire to expand its territory.
President James Madison requested a declaration of war to protect American ships on the high seas and to stop the British from impressing or seizing U.S. sailors. U.S. ships were being stopped and searched by both Great Britain and France, who were fighting each other in Europe. American attempts to invade Canada during the war failed but U.S. forces won a number of important naval battles. Americans saw the War of 1812 as a triumph that showed the new nation could fend off foreign threats.
The United States suffered many costly defeats at the hands of British, Canadian and Native American troops over the course of the War of 1812, including the capture and burning of the nation's capital, Washington, D.C., in August 1814. Nonetheless, American troops were able to repulse British invasions in New York, Baltimore and New Orleans, boosting national confidence and fostering a new spirit of patriotism. The ratification of the Treaty of Ghent on February 17, 1815, ended the war but left many of the most contentious questions unresolved. Nonetheless, many in the United States celebrated the War of 1812 as a "second war of independence," beginning an era of partisan agreement and national pride.
To view this press release and others, visit www.ohiostatehouse.org.
The Ohio Statehouse is more than a monument to our past; it's where history happens! The Ohio Statehouse is open weekdays from 7 a.m. to 6 p.m.; weekends from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m.; closed holidays. The Ohio Statehouse Museum is open weekdays from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.; weekends from noon to 4 p.m.; closed holidays. Admission is free. Free guided tours are offered weekdays on the hour from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m., and weekends from noon to 3 p.m. Tours depart from the Map Room easily accessible from the Third Street entrance. Groups of 10 or more are requested to call in advance to ensure a guide is available. Contact 888/OHIO-123 for more information or to schedule a group tour. For more information about the Ohio Statehouse visit www.ohiostatehouse.org.
The Ohio Statehouse is handicapped accessible and senior friendly. The Capitol Square complex was restored to allow for greater access by individuals living with disabilities. Ohio Statehouse public programs and events are held in accessible and barrier free areas of the building so that everyone can participate. Ohio Statehouse visitors needing disability-related accommodations in order to fully participate in an event may contact the Capitol Square Review and Advisory Board at firstname.lastname@example.org or 614/752-9777 to communicate special needs. Please allow three weeks for arrangements to be completed.
The Capitol Square Review and Advisory Board (CSRAB) is responsible for maintaining the historic character of the Statehouse and Capitol Square while providing for the health, safety and convenience of those who work in or visit the complex. The Ohio Statehouse Museum Education Center coordinates tours of Capitol Square and provides information about the buildings, their history and Ohio's government.
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The Start of the War of 1812
June 18, 2012
11:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.
Ohio Statehouse Veterans Plaza, Broad & Third Streets; downtown Columbus
June 18 marks the 200th anniversary of the beginning of the War of 1812. Shortly after Ohio became a state in 1803, this American conflict with Britain played out across Ohio. An educational ceremony will be presented to explore the conflict and Ohio’s contributions. For more information, visit www.ohiostatehouse.org.
This program is presented in partnership with the Ohio National Guard.