The U.S. Navy will commemorate the Bicentennial of the War of 1812 and The Star Spangled Banner starting in April.  Commemoration events will take place at War of 1812 historic sites across the nation and during Navy Week celebrations in other locations.

The U.S. Navy first demonstrated itself as a force to be reckoned with during the War of 1812. This bicentennial presents an opportunity to reflect upon how, in 1812, the Navy proved that keeping the sea free was essential to protecting our nation’s economy, way of life and independence.  Two hundred years later, the U.S. Navy must be ready every day to protect our national security, our free flow of international commerce, and ensure free passage on the sea.

“For 236 years, the Navy has gone from sail, to steam, to nuclear.  From the USS Constitution to the USS Carl Vinson, our maritime warriors have upheld a proud heritage, protected our nation, projected our power, and protected our freedom of the seas,” said Secretary of the Navy Ray Mabus. ”Not just for ourselves, but for all nations who travel the oceans of the world.”

The Navy began its four-year Commemoration of the Bicentennial of the War of 1812 on March 13, with a ceremonial kick-off by the Secretary of the Navy at the Library of Congress.  A series of public events will continue in additional cities across the nation this year, featuring Sailors and Marines, U.S. Navy & international warships, the Navy’s Blue Angels Flight Demonstration Team, as well as equipment and static displays.

The Navy has partnered with host cities, the U.S. Marine Corps, U.S. Coast Guard, the Navy League ofthe United States, Operation Sail, the International Council of Air Shows, the Smithsonian Institution, and a variety of other public and private organizations, and international navies to tell the story of America’s “Second War of Independence.”

The Commemoration will continue in 2013 with events marking the Battles of Lake Erie and Lake Champlain; in 2014 with the bicentennial of the writing of the Star-Spangled Banner, and in 2015 with the Bicentennial of the Battle of New Orleans.  Local civic committees in each city are organizing events in which the Navy and its partners will participate.

The War of 1812 “really signified our rebirth as a Navy and a nation,” said Chief of Naval Operations Adm.Jonathan W. Greenert. “In a few short months, we’ll be celebrating the commemoration of the 200th anniversary of the War of 1812.  We’ll learn a lot about our Navy over the next 12 months.”

See a full schedule of events and a full list of ships and units participating in each city at:

Join in the conversation on Facebook at and Twitter at @navy1812.


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