Press Release

February 29, 2012
Senator Gives speech on the war before members of American Legion

WASHINGTON – U.S. Senator Ben Cardin (D-MD) today announced he will introduce a Senate resolution commemorating the 200th Anniversary of the War of 1812 and celebrating the heroism displayed by Americans during what is often referred to as the “Second War of Independence.”  The resolution also honors the work of organizations in Maryland and around the nation that are organizing events that will commemorate the Bicentennial anniversary. 

On the Senate floor, as Maryland members of the American Legion watched from the Gallery above, Senator Cardin discussed the resolution, the importance of our flag, and his pride in the role that Maryland played in the War of 1812.  The American Legion is in Washington this week for the group’s 52nd Washington Conference.

“The War of 1812 confirmed American independence from Great Britain in the eyes of the world, and I’m proud of the crucial role that Marylanders played in securing America’s victory,” said Senator Cardin.  “We also cannot forget the Battle of Baltimore and that Francis Scott Key immortalized the battle in the Star-Spangled Banner, which later became our National Anthem.  As we celebrate the Bicentennial of the War of 1812, I encourage all Americans to remember and celebrate the war that ultimately guaranteed our nation’s freedom.”

In addition to the resolution, Senator Cardin has been involved in other legislative efforts to help commemorate the bicentennial celebration.  Senator Cardin and U.S. Congressman Dutch Ruppersberger (D-MD) sponsored legislation creating two commemorative coins to help fund the Bicentennial Celebration of the War of 1812 and the Battle of Baltimore.  On March 5, the U.S. Mint will begin selling 100,000 gold coins and 500,000 silver coins that are emblematic of the War of 1812.  The money from the sale of the coins will go to the Maryland War of 1812 Bicentennial Commission to fund bicentennial celebration activities. 

The War of 1812 ensured America’s continued independence from the British.  After two and a half years of conflict, in which British troops burned Washington, D.C., American soldiers stopped the British as they attempted to capture Baltimore.  After 25 hours of bombardment, the British failed to take Fort McHenry at the mouth of the Baltimore Harbor and were forced to retreat. 

Other co-sponsors of the Resolution include: U.S. Senators Rob Portman (R-OH), John Kerry (D-MA), and Barbara A. Mikulski (D-MD).