1812 · Litchfield County, CT
Document Signed. Litchfield County, Conn. Ca. 1813-1815. [docketed "Support of the War 1812"], 1p. On June 1, 1812 the War of 1812 became the first war declared by the United States. New Englanders derisively called it "Mr. Madison's war" and bemoaned its economic impact, especially in coastal areas, where shipping and fishing had been largely shut down by the British Navy. The conflict was so unpopular in the region that a number of politicians who had supported it were voted out of office in the next election.
Nonetheless, much of the funding and many of the troops came from the New England, and some of the conflict's signal naval battles were fought just off the New England coast.
This document, signed by eight New Englanders, is evidence of that support. The traceable names, such as Asa Prime, Benjamin Stone, John J. Orton, and Elijah Couch originate in Litchfield County, Connecticut, hailing from towns such as New Milford, Reading, and Kent. Their support is both patriotic and pragmatic: the British depredations suffered by coastal New England residents might have seemed distant to these inland farmers in the Northwest Corner of Connecticut, largely out of British reach.
"Whereas great pains have been taken to impress the public mind with the idea that the War in which we are engaged with Great Britain, is extensively unpopular, and that it will not be supported by the People of New-England, the undersigned think proper to declare, that while they lament the necessity of a War, they are fixed in the determination to support it, till the attainment of an honorable peace."
[Signed by:] Hyman Buckingham / Asa Prime Junior / Benjamin Brown / Peter Forwith / Morgan Holmes / Benjamin Stone / John J Orton / Elijah Couch
[Docketed] Support of the War of 1812
Oblong 8vo, creased, faintly toned, generally very good. (Inventory #: 24163)