The American Threat

A More European Way of War

The American army was reduced to 10,000 men and reformed from top to bottom to become a truly professional force. There remained many sources of animosity between the United States and Great Britain, and a new war was still possible. In London, after the signing of the peace treaty, the staff considered the problem of how to defend British North America.

The War of 1812 had unfolded to a great extent in accordance with the rules of European war. At the beginning the armies were still covering long distances by travelling along rivers and lakes, but as time went by overland troop movements had become possible in some areas. The armies also no longer consisted solely of infantrymen, but also artillery, cavalry, a train and baggage. This meant that future battles would likely occur increasingly on open land as in Europe, rather than in the woods where the Canadians excelled.