TODAY IN HISTORY: The Battle of New Orleans (Jan. 8, 1815)
The War of 1812 was over. On December 12, 1814, the United States and Britain signed the Treaty of Ghent ending the war. Unfortunately, American forces under the command of General Andrew Jackson and British forces encamped near New Orleans were unaware of that fact. The two armies had faced each other off south of New Orleans since mid-December and news traveled slowly. On January 8, 1815 British forces attacked Jackson’s position. The fighting was devastating to the British forces in their assault on the far better positioned Americans with 290 British dead and more than 1,200 wounded versus 13 American dead and 39 wounded. The decisive peacetime victory became a legend and paved the way for Andrew Jackson to become president.