Hartford Convention

Hartford Convention

Hartford Convention

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The Hartford Convention was an event spanning from December 15, 1814–January 4, 1815 in the United States during the War of 1812 in which New England's opposition to the war reached the point where secession from the United States was discussed. The end of the war — with a return to the status quo ante bellum — disgraced the Federalist Party, which disbanded in most places.

Trade policy

Thomas Jefferson's anti-foreign trade policies, particularly the Embargo Act of 1807 and James Madison's Non-Intercourse Act of 1809, were very unpopular in the northeastern United States, especially among merchants and shippers. Jefferson's successor, President James Madison, was even less popular in New England, particularly after his prosecution of the War of 1812, which ended legal trade with England. The opposing Federalist Party regained strength especially in New England, and in New York where it collaborated with Mayor DeWitt Clinton of New York City and supported him for president in 1812.

Reaction of New England to commerce impediments

When Madison was re-elected in 1812 the reaction in New England intensified. The war turned against the Americans, and the British effectively blockaded the entire coastline. Almost all maritime activity (apart from smuggling) was stopped and New England interests suffered.

Massachusetts and Connecticut felt that they were physically threatened from without. They also experienced the repercussions of their opposition to Madison's...
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