Winner of The 2012 George Pendleton Prize

Winner of The 2012 Gold Medal from the Independent Publisher Book Awards in U.S. History (IPPY)

Winner of the 2012 Military Order of Saint Louis Award

Chosen for the 2012 Navy Reading List of Essential Reading

Selected as one of the top 20 Notable Naval Books of 2011

A finalist for an Audie in History from the Audio Book Industry


"Every American should read George C. Daughan's riveting 1812: The Navy's War. Daughan masterfully breaks down complicated naval battles to tell how the U.S. thwarted the British armada on the Great Lakes and the high seas. Highly recommended!"...............Douglas Brinkley, Professor of History, Rice University.


"At last, a history of the War of 1812 that Americans can read without wincing. By focusing on our small but incredibly courageous Navy, George Daughan has told a story of victories against awful odds that makes for a memorable book.".......Thomas Fleming, author of Liberty!: The American Revolution.


"In this vitally important and extraordinarily well researched work, award-winning historian George Daughan demonstrates the often overlooked impact of the 20 ship U.S. Navy's performance against the 1,000 ship British Navy in the War of 1812. Daughan makes a compelling case that the Navy's performance in the war forced Europe to take the U.S. more seriously, initiated a fundamental change in the British-American relationship, and enabled us to maintain a robust Navy even in peacetime." .................Lawrence Korb, senior fellow at the Center for American Progresss and former Assistant Secretary of Defense.


"The War of 1812 was a difficult test for the Untied States, still wobbly on the world stage nearly two decades after formal independence. That Americans received a passing grade was due in no small part to the exceptional performance of the U.S. Navy, which humiliated the legendary British Navy time and time again. With verve and deep research, George Daughan has brought those gripping naval battles back to life. For military historians and general historian alike, 1812: The Navy's War restores an important missing chapter to our national narrrative."........Edward L. Widmer, author of Ark of the Liberties: America and the World.


"1812: The Navy's War is a sparkling effort. It tells more than the naval history of the war, for there is much in it about the politics and diplomacy of the war years. The stories of ship-to-ship battles and of the officers and men who sailed and fought form the wonderful heart of the book. These accounts are told in a handsome prose that conveys the strategy, high feeling, and courage of both British and Americans. In every way this is a marvelous book.".............Robert Middlekauff, author of The Glorious Cause: The American Revolution, 1763-1789.


"The War of 1812 was America's first great naval war, and George Daughan tells the story, from the coast of Brazil to the Great Lakes, from election campaigns to grand strategy to ship-to-ship combat. Sweeping, exciting and detailed."........Richard Brookhiser, author of James Madison.


Reviews and other information are added below as they are received. Scroll down to see them all. Some of these reviews are lengthy and have been condensed here. For full reviews visit the publication websites.

Virginia Magazine of History and Biography

"Daughan's volume tells tales about heroes, like Oliver Hazard Perry and Thomas Macdonough, in a fscinating fashion.The book is filled with information, supported by charts, diagrams, and illustrations, all of which help to place this war and its impact upon the nation into context. 1812 is filled with extensive detail but remains very readable. Consequently, it is a book that will please the scholar, student, and novice.

"Despite its subtitle, The Navy's War, this volume does far more than explain ship actions on the Great Lakes or on the high sea, it also provides a comprehensive survey of land engagements, political machinations, and European events as they are influenced by or influence naval battles. Daughan's thoroughness enables the reader to understand the U.S. Navy's role in such victories as the battles of Plattsburgh and New Orleans, which enabled the United States to secure an honorable peace.

"....................More importatly, this book's conclusion wisely tells how the War of 1812 taught the young nation several lessons that guided its future. Daughan documents how American's democratic government could handle wartime crisis without discarding its Constitution. Furthermore, he notes that the war gave the nation a greater sense of unity, reinforced the need for a stronger military to ensure national defense, and placed america on an equal diplomatic footing with European nations.

John V. Quarstein, is the historian for the city of Newport News. He is the author of CSS Virginai: Sink before Surrender (2012).................Spring 2012

American Heritage

"George C. Daughan's book is more comprehensive than the title might suggest. The author of "If By Sea:The Forging of the American Navy - From the Revolution to the War of 1812" deftly situates the naval story within the broader contours of the war, exploring diplomancy, the dustup over impressment, the Napoleonic wars, and the ill-fated Canadian campaigns. Much of the book's originality lies in its conclusion. Historians have long recognized the overmatched Navy's exploits against the British colossus - a David-verus-Goliath contest- but they have tended to denigrate its strategic importance. Daughan argues that the naval captains' bravery helped bring about a decisive change in Eurpoean attitudes toward the Untied States."

Phil Kopper and S. Scott Rohrer.........................American Heritage, Spring 2012

Maine Sunday Telegram

"Readers who have experienced George C. Daughan's prvious volume, "If By Sea: The Forging of the American Navy from the American Revolution to the War of 1812" (Basic Books, 2008), will not be surprised by the sweep, substance and attention to detail in his new book, "1812: The Navy's War."

"In the end, I stand in awe of my fellow Portlander's breaith and depth of knowledge and his abilitiy to organize a coherent and most readable volume. Here is a basic book for understand America's 'Second War of Independence' after 200 years."

William David Barry is a local historian who has authored or co-authored five books, including "Deering: a Social and Architectural History."............................Sunday, June 12, 2012