The War of 1812, sometimes called “the forgotten conflict,” was a two-and-a-half year confrontation with Great Britain that brought the United States to the verge of bankruptcy and disunion. With this stamp, the Postal Service begins a series commemorating the bicentennial of a war that ultimately helped forge our national identity and gave us our national anthem, “The Star-Spangled Banner.”
The USS Constitution is escorted by a tugboat in Boston Harbor in Boston, Sunday, Aug. 19, 2012. The USS Constitution, the U.S. Navy's oldest commissioned war ship, sailed under her own power during the event Sunday for the first time since 1997. The sail was held to commemorate the 200th anniversary of the ship's victory over HMS Guerriere in the War of 1812. (AP Photo/Steven Senne)
The USS Constitution, which was first launched in 1797, will be tugged from its berth in Boston Harbor on Sunday into the harbor. It will then set out to open seas for a 10-minute cruise. The short trip marks the day two centuries ago when the Constitution bested the British frigate HMS Guerriere in a fierce battle during the War of 1812. It follows a three-year restoration project and is the first time the Constitution has been to sea on its own since its 200th birthday in 1997.