NOLA Navy Week
War of 1812 Bicentennial Events to Begin Here on April 17-23, 2012
|USCG Barque Eagle
New Orleans will serve as the inaugural city in a three-year national celebration commemorating the War of 1812 and the Star-Spangled Banner. The 2012 celebration will take place April 17 – 23, 2012, featuring a colorful spectacle of ships spreading on the East Bank of the Mississippi River from Erato Street to Upper Poland Avenue. Additionally, the Navy's famed Blue Angels will perform a memorable air show as part of the week's festivities.
The U.S. Navy's amphibious warship USS Wasp, along with other large navy vessels, will welcome Class A tall ships from countries around the world to New Orleans, joining the U.S. Navy and OpSail 2012 for the celebration. The theme, "Our Flag Was Still There," will mark the festivities in seven ports and across the country.
New Orleans was chosen as the host city for the opening events marking the 200th anniversary of what has been referred to as "America's Second War for Independence." The three-year celebration will also end in New Orleans where the last battle of the war was fought.
In each of the port cities, beginning with New Orleans, ships will be open for public visiting, and citizens will have the opportunity to interact with sailors from around the world. In addition to the Navy fleet and tall ships lining the Port, and the Blue Angels air show, activities will include official visits among regional dignitaries and Navy leadership, visiting sailors engaged in friendly sporting competitions, a seafood cook-off, and regional outreach and community service projects by visiting sailors.
"From 2012 to 2015, the United States Navy and its partners, including Operation Sail, Inc., will commemorate the War of 1812 and the writing of our national anthem, the Star- Spangled banner," U.S. Secretary of the Navy Ray Mabus said. "It is remarkable that 200 years ago, one of the first wars in our country's history was fought against nations who have become our closest allies."
"Bringing the tall ships of the world back to U.S. waters for the commemoration of this glorious American milestone excites the imagination," said chairman of Operation Sail, Inc., Jose Fuentes. "Throughout 2012-2015, millions of people will witness these graceful and majestic sailing ships as they parade in together, and celebrate brotherhood of the sea, and of our freedoms."
For more information about the event's here in New Orleans, visit: www.nolanavyweek.com.
The War and Its Significance
The War of 1812 began in the northern region of the United States and ended with the Battle of New Orleans, fought on the grounds of a plantation in Chalmette, just outside the city, on January 8, 1815. A resounding victory for the Americans, the Battle of New Orleans helped victorious General Andrew Jackson win election as president in 1828. It also marked the last time an invading foreign army ever set foot on American soil.
The War of 1812 was significant for strengthening the American Navy. American battle frigates won key victories at sea and along the Great Lakes boundary between the U.S. and British-ruled Canada. The unsuccessful British bombardment of Fort McHenry in Baltimore in September 1813 gave Francis Scott Key the inspiration to write "The Star-Spangled Banner," which became our National Anthem.
|Battle of New Orleans
New Orleans will lead the parade of American cities commemorating the War of 1812. Following our lead, related commemorations will take place on the Atlantic Coast in New York, Norfolk, Baltimore, Boston, and New London, Connecticut.Commemoration events in the Great Lakes region will take place in Milwaukee, Chicago, Toledo, Cleveland, Detroit, and Buffalo.
The three tall ships coming to New Orleans are among only a few old-style, primarily wooden sailing vessels of their type still surviving in the world today. The only two American frigates dating back to the War of 1812, theConstitution ("Old Ironsides") and the Constellation, are both permanently moored, in Boston and Baltimore respectively, and unable to sail.
Here are some brief descriptions of the visiting ships that have confirmed:
The Tall Ships
Built at the Blohm and Voss Shipyard in Hamburg, Germany in 1936, and commissioned as Horst Wessel, the U.S. Coast Guard Barque Eagle was one of three sail-training ships operated by the pre-World War II German Navy. At the close of the war, the ship was taken as a war reparation by the U.S., re-commissioned as the U.S. Coast Guard Cutter Eagle and sailed to New London, Connecticut, which has been its homeport ever since.
The Guayas, a 914-ton, three-masted barquentine, was named both for the longest river in Ecuador and the first steamship ever built in the Guayaquil Shipyard. The Guayas stretches over 257 feet long, and, like her sister ship, the Gloria, now serves as a training ship. She carries 80 cadets under the guidance of 35 officers and crew members.
Indonesia's Dewaruci was built in Germany and launched in 1953. The name represent mythological of Indonesian god of truth and courage. Her based is in Surabaya, Indonesia on the Java Sea. Recently Dewaruci serves as a goodwill ambassador for Indonesia to the rest of the world and as a training vessel for naval cadets. Expectedly through the event, Dewaruci will bring Indonesian hospitality by among other presenting various Indonesian cultural activities as the medium of promotion for tourism and Indonesian culture.
About Operation Sail, Inc.
Operation Sail, Inc. is a nonprofit organization established in 1961 with the endorsement of President John F. Kennedy. Backed by a Joint Congressional Resolution, its mission is to advance sail training and promote goodwill among nations. OpSail has produced five international sailing events each tied to a landmark historical event and culminating in a traditional Parade of Sail in New York Harbor. Previous OpSails were staged in 1964 (the New York World's Fair), 1976 (the U.S. Bicentennial), 1986 (the Statue of Liberty centennial), 1992 (the Columbus 500th anniversary), and 2000 (the New Milennium).
For more information visit www.opsail.org.
For more information on Navy 1812 Bicentennial activities and events, visit their website: www.OurFlagWasStillThere.org;
Mayor of New Orleans
"Being the inaugural city to kick off a three-year nationwide celebration speaks to the greatness of our city. We will set the bar high for all cities by demonstrating our experience in entertainment on a massive level."
CEO, New Orleans Tourism Marketing Corporation
Chairman of the NOLA Navy Week Host Committee
"Our committees have been working steadily to begin ironing out the details that will make up the event. We are presently looking for sponsoring partners who want to be part of something truly historic and see the opportunity for vast exposure on a national level."
Chairman, Operation Sail
"Bringing the tall ships of the world back to U.S. waters for the commemoration of this glorious American milestone excites the imagination. Throughout 2012-2015, millions of people will watch these graceful and majestic sailing ships as they parade together, and celebrate the brotherhood of the sea and our freedoms."
Admiral Jonathan W. Greenert
Chief of Naval Operations
"The War of 1812 really signified our rebirth as a Navy and a nation. In a few short months, we'll be celebrating the commemoration of the 200th anniversary of the War of 1812. We'll learn a lot about our Navy over the next twelve months."