Researched and edited by Christine F. Hughes and Charles E, Brodine, Jr., the selected documents in the final volume in this series survey the war at sea in the Atlantic and Gulf Coast theaters in 1814 and 1815, and include significant events such as the British naval blockade of the U.S. East Coast, U.S. Navy actions at the Battle of New Orleans, and the war’s last naval engagements in early 1815.


“The War of 1812 proved a defining moment for the United States Navy. Before the war, the question of whether the nation needed a permanent naval establishment remained politically unsettled. The Navy’s brilliant performance during the war—on inland lakes, on distant seas, and in protecting the homeland—ended all debate in favor of America’s sea service. 

Over two hundred years later, one of the great icons of the War of 1812, [USS Constitution] remains in commission, berthed at the Charlestown Navy Yard inside Boston Harbor. This ship, and the Sailors who share its story, provide a living reminder of the courage, honor, and commitment that sustained the Navy through the War of 1812 and remain its core values today,” notes NHHC’s Director, Samuel J. Cox, U.S. Navy rear admiral (retired) in the foreword.

The release of Volume IV (which includes 1,230 pages of primary source documents and expert commentary; art, tables, and charts; and an extensive index) also marks the first time all volumes in the series are available to the public in digital form.


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NHHC, located at the Washington Navy Yard, is responsible for the preservation, analysis, and dissemination of U.S. naval history and heritage. It provides the knowledge foundation for the Navy by maintaining historically relevant resources and products that reflect the Navy's unique and enduring contributions through our nation's history, and supports the fleet by assisting with and delivering professional research, analysis, and interpretive services. NHHC is composed of many activities including the Navy Department Library, the Navy Operational Archives, the Navy art and artifact collections, underwater archeology, Navy histories, ten museums, USS Constitution repair facility and the historic ship Nautilus.

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