Native nations from the Great Lakes to the Gulf of Mexico experienced the War of 1812 as but a chapter in a much longer struggle to defend their homelands against European encroachment and settlement. The "New World" that Europeans encountered beginning in the 1400s was home to Native civilizations compelled increasingly to adjust to life on a continent becoming dominated by European, then American settlement. As empires moved westward into Native territory, new Native alliances brought together coalitions of nations. Spiritual and cultural renewal combined with military resistance as Native communities attempted to stem the tide of American expansion and maintain independence and autonomy.
Last updated: May 20, 2013