Adam Franti

Date Approved


Degree Type

Open Access Thesis

Degree Name

Master of Arts (MA)

Department or School

History and Philosophy

Committee Member

John McCurdy, Ph.D.

Committee Member

Richard Nation, Ph.D.

Committee Member

Steven Ramold, Ph.D.


This thesis examines the role of the American militia during the War of 1812. Focusing on the words of the participants themselves , this thesis uses primary sourcde material to attempt to reconstruct the actions of the militia during a small number of highly dramatic moments in the first campaigns of the conflict. Secondary sources are used to broaden the scope of the research and bring to light elements of social and cultural history and explore the meaningfulness of the militia both as an institution of top-down construction and as one of bottom-up construction. The study determines that the popularity of these dramatic moments was made by ambitious politicians following the war, and the subsequent historiography has been severely flawed.

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