Amidst patriotic celebrations surrounding the upcoming Fourth of July, we Americans typically keep in mind only one war of independence. However, forever establishing a claim to the (unofficial) title of rebellious young nation in the history books took more than one war against Mother England. The War of 1812 aided this claim, yet remains an afterthought compared to other events in our nation’s history. Christopher Klein, author of Discovering the Boston Harbor Islands and The Die-Hard Sports Fan’s Guide to Boston,  accounts for this forgetfulness and fills us in on interesting facts about the war in 10 Things You May Not Know About the War of 1812, an article featured on the History Channel online.

Not a city to neglect history, Boston will host events in the week to come in honor of the bicentennial of the War of 1812. Learn more about the time period of the war at an 1812 Town Meeting, which takes place on July 1st and 3rd from 2:30 to 3 pm at Faneuil Hall. The Old North Church will participate as well, hosting a Blessing of the Sails at 5 pm on July 1st for the Navy and tall ships taking part in the celebration. Feeling musical? As Chris points out, the War of 1812 is often remembered for presenting the nation with a song worthy of a national anthem. Experience this legacy first hand at the Songs of the War of 1812 event at the Paul Revere House on June 30th from 1 to 4 pm or at the Music of the War of 1812 event on Spectacle Island on July 1st from 1 to 4 pm. Both events feature historian and musician Rick Spencer, who will treat guests to what promise to be eye-opening and entertaining performances.

To get into the true spirit of the War of 1812, which was fought on water as much as on land, you might feel inclined to take to the harbor. Boston’s Best Cruises has a myriad of events from June 29th to July 5th that will allow you to be up close and personal with one-of-a-kind ships. Check out their website for dates, times and prices. Also, don’t forget about Christopher Klein’s walking tour of Peddocks Island on July 1st! Find out more information here for what will surely be a wonderful way to get acquainted with the harbor. As Chris’ article demonstrates, you can never know enough about history. Take the opportunity to discover more about the War of 1812 during next week’s bicentennial celebrations!

Photo credits: USS Constitution image courtesy of ussconstitutionmuseum.org. Depiction of Francis Scott Key courtesy of history.com. Tall Ships image courtesy of bostonbestcruises.com.