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Title: The militias' relationship with the regular army in the war of 1812, with particular respect to the militias of Ohio and New York.
Author: Hills, Jonathan David.
ISNI:       0000 0001 3578 6558
Awarding Body: University of Sunderland
Current Institution: University of Sunderland
Date of Award: 2000
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The foundation for this study rests upon the military ideology of Revolutionary America, which had as its guiding principle, the conviction that standing armies in peacetime were a liability. To many Americans a standing army represented an ever present threat to their rights as citizens. As a consequence, responsibility for the security of the nation was placed upon the idealised notion of the citizen soldier. This was a citizen, who it was supposed, would, when the need arose, voluntarily renounce his own personal priorities for the sake of the nation. Reality, however, proved otherwise, for citizen soldiers rarely achieved what was expected of them. Yet as this study's examination of the Congressional debates of the 1790's makes clear, the notion of the citizen soldier proved to be extremely resilient. Despite a catalogue of failings, the country's reliance on the state militias for a significant proportion of its military capability persisted. This served to severely handicap the effectiveness of the American military establishment during the War of 1812. Primarily, the effect that the militias had upon the effectiveness of the military establishment is found within the various interactions of citizen soldiers with the regular army. Although these interactions are categorised and analysed within the context of this study, all of them revolve around the issue of consent. Militiamen demanded from the federal government that once they had consented to serve, it was beholden upon the federal government to ensure that they were properly equipped and supplied, as well as being directed towards some worthwhile objective. Yet despite the considerable importance these interactions had upon the military establishment, and their utility in understanding many of its failings, historians of the conflict have failed to adequately consider them. Instead, they have tended to either denigrate the militias' obvious failings, or eulogise their achievements, rather than examine why the militias were capable of performances at both extremes.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available
Keywords: Republic; Citizen soldiers; America; Military