The British Perspective on the Battle of New Orleans

This editorial brings up a perspective that is often ignored: What did the British think about the Battle of New Orleans?

The writer, James Gill, makes the point that the British were involved in previous anniversaries, including descendants of Sir Edward Pakenham, the opposing British general who lost his life during the battle. But what about immediately after the battle? Was their concern focused internally, or on Europe, after decades of war with France and its allies, leaving the United States an afterthought? What about Britain’s opinion of Jackson following the battle? Or after the execution of Ambrister and Arbuthnot? Was there lingering resentment from across the Atlantic that influenced foreign relations during Jackson’s presidency?*

Seems like an article waiting to be written.

* American chargé d’affaires in London Aaron Vail reported in 1835 that Jackson was “decidedly the most popular President in England we ever had” in Britain. (John Belohlavek, “Let the Eagle Soar!”: The Foreign Policy of Andrew Jackson. [Lincoln: University of Nebraska Press, 1985], 73.)



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