War of 1812 exhibit opens at NMU

An historical exhibit that explores what may be North America’s most forgotten major war premiered at Northern Michigan University today.

The Beaumier U.P. Heritage Center’s latest display features a traveling exhibit on the War of 1812. The Canadian War Museum in Ottawa developed the exhibit to tell a story many people in North America haven’t heard before “from the perspective of four different groups of people who were affected by it,” Beaumier U.P. Heritage Center curator Dan Truckey said. “The Canadian people who were becoming a nation, the Americans, the British and the First Nations people on both sides of the border.”

The war, especially an American invasion during the war, helped Canadians form a national identity. It was essentially a second war of independence for the U.S. and it solidified British influence over North America, but the First Nations have a different perspective.

“It did not turn out well for those groups,” Truckey said. “The groups that sided with the British who were in what is now the United States suffered, probably, the greatest. They were relocated; they were persecuted by the United States government.”

‘1812’ will be on display through March 1st inside Cohodas Hall at NMU with a special reception tonight at 6:00 to celebrate the opening.