Friday, December 29, 2017

'Forgotten War" Veteran Honored-- Part 2: Service Consisted of Lots of Walking

On June 18, 2012, the bicentennial of the War of 1812, he received another gift from the government, a granite veterans headstone with his rank and company inscribed on it.  This came about because of efforts by his great-great-grandson Mike Rowley of Iowa.

Ashbel Rowley was born in 1793 in Nassau County, New York, where he resided until his move to Illinois after the war.  During the war, he enlisted as a private in Captain Sherwood's Co., Yale's Battalion, New York Militia.  His service consisted of a 75-mile march to report to duty and a 275 mile walk back home during which he saw no combat.

He married and had nine children, some of whom settled in DeKalb County near Waterman.

Mike Rowley belongs to the General Society of the War of 1812, Iowa Chapter.  At least 438 War of 1812 veterans are buried in Iowa.  Mike has a replica 1813 soldiers dress uniform.


Thursday, December 28, 2017

Veteran of 'Forgotten War' Honored in Illinois-- Part 1: Ashbel Rowley

From the June 6, 2012, Daily herald (Kane County)  "Veteran of 'Forgotten' War of 1812 honored in Sugar Grove."

Ashbel Rowley served two weeks in the Army during the war.  In 1855, Congress loosened its service time requirements for pension land grants for War of 1812 veterans and he got 160 acres of Illinois farmland for free.

At age 63, the farmer and carpenter moved to homestead near what is now Kaneville, Illinois, with his wife and several children.  He lived there until he died in 1864.  He is the only known War of 1812 veteran buried in Sugar Grove Township Cemetery.

Two Weeks for 160 Acres?  Pretty Good Deal.  --Brock-Perry

Wednesday, December 27, 2017

Samuel Livingston Breese-- Part 4: Civil War

On 16 July 1862, he was commissioned commodore and placed on the Retired List because of his age.  On 3 September 1862, he was one of 13 commodores selected to become rear admirals when the rank was introduced to the U.S. Navy.

Placed again on the Retired List, he was appointed to lighthouse inspector the same year.  He was made Port Admiral of Philadelphia in 1869.

Samuel Breese died at Mt. Airy, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, December 17, 1870, and buried at Forest Hills Cemetery, Utica, New York.


Tuesday, December 26, 2017

Samuel Livingston Breese-- Part 3: Mexican War Service

Afterwards, he commanded the frigate USS Cumberland of the Mediterranean Squadron in 1845

He was in the Atlantic commanding the USS Albany during the Mexican War 1846-1847.  He took part in the capture of Tuxpan, Tabasco and Vera Cruz.  For a sort time he was military governor of Tuxpan.

In 1848, he was on special duty in the Great Lakes.  From 1853-1855 he commanded Norfolk Navy Yard and then commanded the Mediterranean Squadron.  From 1859-1861 he was in charge of the Brooklyn Navy Yard.

He married twice, but had no children.  As such, he was not the father of Kidder R. Breese, who fought at the First and Second Battles of Fort Fisher.


Friday, December 22, 2017

Samuel Livingston Breese-- Part 2: War of 1812 Service

During the War of 1812, Breese served under Commodore Thomas Macdonough at the Battle of Lake Champlain and for gallant conduct there, received a Congressional sword and the thanks of Congress.

Commissioned a lieutenant on April 28, 1816, commander in December 1835 and captain September 8,1841.

Attached to the Philadelphia Navy Yard in 1836 and to the naval rendezvous in Baltimore in 1841.

He served in the Mediterranean Sea fighting against pirates from Algiers 1826-1827 and was in Levant during the war between Turkey and Greece.


Thursday, December 21, 2017

Samuel Livingston Breese, USN-- Part 1: War of 1812, Mexican War and Civil War

From Wikipedia.

I came across his name while researching another War of 1812 naval officer.  The last name struck a bell as there was a Union naval officer by the name of Kidder R. Breese who was at the Battle of Fort Fisher during the Civil War.  Might this Breese be his father or relative?

August 6, 1794 to December 17, 1870.  Rear Admiral, USN.  Saw active duty in the War of 1812, Mexican War and the Civil War.

Born Utica, New York, he was the brother of Illinois U.S. Senator Sidney Breese.

Appointed midshipman September 10, 1810.


Wednesday, December 20, 2017

U.S. Navy's Master Commandant Rank

From Wikipedia.

I keep coming across this naval rank which is not used anymore.  Just to be sure exactly what it was, I did some research.

It was a rank in the early U.S. Navy, slightly higher than that of a lieutenant.  Often the command of a warship that was too small to justify it be commanded by a full captain was commanded by master commandants.

The rank was later shortened to commander in 1838.

Generally, warships in the early U.S. Navy were commanded, descending in size, by captains, master commandants and lieutenants.


Tuesday, December 19, 2017

Zardoc Cook-- Part 4: Lived Until 1863

He served in the Georgia House of Representatives in 1806, 1807 and 1822 and the Georgia Senate 11810-1814 (during the War of 1812), 1823 and 1824.  Elected as a Republican to the House of Representatives of the 14th U.S. Congress to fill the vacancy following the resignation of Alfred Cuthbert.  Reelected to the 15th Congress and served 1816-1819.

Retired from public life and lived on his plantation and engaged in agricultural pursuits until his death in 1863.  It would have been interesting to see what he thought about Georgia's secession and the Civil War since he lived until 1863.


Zardoc Cook-- Part 3: Public Service and Militia

From Find-A Grave.

Born 18 February 1769 in Virginia.  Died 3 August 1863 in Athens, Georgia.  Buried at Jackson Family Cemetery in Watkinsville, Oconee County, Georgia.

Elected to the U.S. House of Representatives from Georgia in an at-large seat.

One of the first white settlers in Clarke County, Georgia.  Was a self-educated man.

Ensign in the Washington County Militia in 1793 and captain of the Eleventh Company Hancock County militia.


Monday, December 18, 2017

Zardoc Cook, Georgia War of 1812 Veteran-- Part 2

On August 30, 1805, he bought 449 acres of land on Barbers Creek for $2,500 ($5.57 per acre).  On October 21, 1807, he bought another 4,000 acres for$300.

Zardoc Cook was an ensign in the Washington County Militia in 1793 and captain of Eleventh Company, Hancock County Militia in 1796.

Public service included the Georgia House of Representatives and Senate.  He was elected to the 14th U.S. Congress to fill out a vacancy.


Zardoc Cook, War of 1812 Georgia Veteran-- Part 1: Zadock or Zardoc?

From the November 8, 2017, Oconee Enterprise  "Descendant of War of 1812 veteran dedicates the homestead" Michael Prochaska.

Zardoc Cook, the 4th great grandfather of Joyce Lambeit was the veteran in question.  Lambeit belongs to the General John Baytop Scott Chapter U.S. Daughters which had the ceremony.  A historical marker will be put up at Cook's house.

Zadoc Cook was born February 18, 1769, in Halifax County, North Carolina, and died at age 96 on August 3, 1863, in Clarke County, now Oconee County, Georgia.

Upon further research on him, I have come across some confusion as to whether his first name is spelled Zadoc, Zardoc or Zardock.


Friday, December 15, 2017

General Nathaniel Taylor-- Part 2: A Question of Guns

As they marched southward, the men did a lot of road building and guarding wagons.

Many were stationed at Camp Mandeville near Mobile in February 1814, where they encountered much disease.  Captain Joseph Scott's 104-man company had 31 listed as sick in their final muster.

From the East Tennessee Historical Society.

From 1800 to 1814, Nathaniel Taylor became quite a rich and successful businessman and even had iron forges.

In 1814-1815, after the defeat of the Creek Indians, the U.S. Secretary of War directed a call for 2,500 Tennessee militia to march south and man forts in the recently captured territory.  Taylor's brigade was part of this.  Evidently, there was an acute lack of weapons and a bit of a confrontation along the way with the commander of a regular U.S. Army regiment about his having surplus guns.

On November 9, at Fort Jackson, half of Taylor's troops were without guns.


General Nathaniel Taylor-- Part 1: Brig. Gen. Tennessee Militia

In the last post I wrote about the historic 200-year-old home in Elizabethton, Tennessee, Sabine Hill, which was built by the general's widow opening for the public back in November.  Gen. Taylor was mentioned as participating in the defense of Mobile, Alabama, during the War of 1812.

Ancestry says he was born in 1772 and passed away in 1816 in Carter, Tennessee.  Carter is the county Elizabethton is located in.

Find-A-Grave says he was a brigadier general in the War of 1812 and was born February 4, 1771.

Part of his brigade of drafted Tennessee militia were mustered in at Knoxville and marched to Mobile via Camp Ross (present-day Chattanooga), Fort Jackson, Fort Claiborne and Fort Montgomery.


Thursday, December 14, 2017

After 200 Years, Sabine Hill Opens to the Public

From the October 4, 2017, Johnson City (Tennessee) Press  "After 200 years, the front door of Sabine Hill will open to the public in November."

Elizabethton.  Closed for several years for renovation, Tennessee State Parks on Wednesday began taking applications for guided tours for the historic house.

Built by Mary Patton Taylor, the widow of Brigadier General Nathaniel Taylor who participated in the defenses of Mobile, Alabama, during the War of 1812.

The house will open November 4.  Guests will be shuttled to the home which was completed around 1817.  It is part of Sycamore Shoals State Historic Park.


Making Her Mark: Jane "Jennie" Forsyth

From the November 6, 2017, Daily Journal.

Jane "Jennie" Forsyth was buried in Franklin's First Mount Pleasant Cemetery in 1856.  She and her husband, John Forsyth, were one of the first pioneer settlers in Hensley Township in Johnson County, Indiana.  She is a Real daughter of the War of 1812.

There was a ceremony honoring her on October 21.

She was born in Jefferson County, Kentucky in 1787 and moved to Johnson County after marrying James Forsyth, a farmer in the 1820s.  She was the eldest daughter of Thomas Sturgeon, Jr. a War of 1812 veteran in Captain Martin L. Hawkins in the Kentucky Infantry.

He also fought in the American Revolution, joining when he was just 15.


David Conner, USN-- Part 2: Commanded the Home Squadron in Mexican War

After the war, David Conner was sent to the Pacific, did shore duty in Philadelphia and commanded the USS Dolphin.  Later he was the first Chief of the Bureau of Construction, Equipment and Repairs for the Navy.

During the Mexican War he commanded the Home Squadron operating in the Gulf of Mexico from 1846-1847.  He directed the assault on Vera Cruz.  Commodore Mathew C. Perry was his vice-commander during the war.

He later commanded the Philadelphia Navy Yard and died 20 March 1856 and is buried in Philadelphia's Laurel Hill Cemetery.


Wednesday, December 13, 2017

David Conner, USN-- Part 1: Service in War of 1812

While doing research on Jacob Zeilen of the USMC, I found he was buried at Laurel Hill Cemetery in Philadelphia and a lot of famous people are buried there.

One of them is David Conner, USN, who fought in the War of 1812 and the Mexican War.


Became a midshipman 16 January 1809 and served on the USS President.

During the War of 1812, he was on the USS Hornet during the chase of the HMS Belvidera and saw action against the HMS Peacock in the fall of 1813 and the capture of the HMS Penguin March 1815 in which he received a wound.


Tuesday, December 12, 2017

Another Thomas Chambers Marine Painting-- Part 5

Another painting by Thomas Chambers was "New York Harbor with Castle Garden and ships," circa 1846.

Castle Clinton (Fort Clinton) was once known as Castle Garden, a circular sandstone fort now located at Battery Park in Manhattan, New York City.

It was the United States' first immigration station (predating Ellis Island) where more than eight million people arrived between 1855 and 1890.


Monday, December 11, 2017

"Old Ironsides" Floats Again-- Part 2: Rehabbed Stem to Stern

For the past two years, the USS Constitution has been in drydock undergoing repairs.  It was built in 1797 by Joshua Humphreys and is the oldest commissioned warship in the world.

Roughly 300 sheets of copper were placed on the lower hull.  Then it was completely rehabbed to keep it seaworthy and water tight.  These repairs were stem to stern.

Now, if they can just do something with the USS Olympia, of Spanish- American War fame in Philadelphia.  This is another ship worthy of saving.

It has been homeported in Charlestown since 1897 and was built less than three miles from the present site at the site of today's Coast Guard station.

It was the Constitution's first drydocking this century.

"Aye, Tear her Tattered Ensign Down."  I Had To memorize This Poem in Fifth Grade.  --Brock-Perry

"Old Ironsides" Floats Again-- Part 1: Back In the Water After Two Years

From the November 27, 2017, WCVB ABC, Boston.

The USS Constitution, "Old Ironsides" has been gone from its mooring in Charlestown for two years.

The famous ship won three major War of 1812 sea battles against British ships and has had its home base at Charlestown Naval Yard since 1897.  It was launched in 1797.

Surprisingly, attendance at its museum actually went up while the ship was gone.  Every year, between 500,000 and 600,000 visitors come to the ship and are greeted by actual duty sailors.


Friday, December 8, 2017

Thomas Chambers-- Part 4: Paintings

Other paintings of Thomas:  Chambers"

**  "Capture of H.B.M. Frigate Macedonian By The USS United States on October 25, 1812", circa 1845.

 A critic remarked of this painting:  "The rolling waves and swirls of smoke convey the noise and excitement of battle."

**  "Pirate Ships and Cutter Firing Cannons, Seascape, Night Scene"  circa 1850.

Cutters were used by several navies in the 17th and 18th centuries and were usually the smallest commissioned ships in the fleet.  They were used for coastal patrol, customs duties, escort, dispatch carriers and for small "cutting out" raids.


Thursday, December 7, 2017

Pearl Harbor Warning Signs-- Part 2: Yamamoto Takes Over Japanese Navy

This being the 76th anniversary of the attack on Pearl Harbor today, all of my blogs will commemorate this event.


February 10:  Japan occupies Hainan Island on the South China coast.

August:  Admiral Isoroku Yamamoto takes command of Japan's navy.

September:  Germany invades Poland.  World War II begins.December:  U.S. halts exports of aviation fuel technology to Japan.


May:  U.S. shifts Pacific Fleet base to Pearl Harbor from San Diego.  This move is not official until February 1941.


January:  Yamamoto consults his officers about the feasibility of an attack on pearl Harbor.

November 26:  Unknown to the U.S., Japan's naval fleet heads for Pearl Harbor.


Pearl Harbor Warning Signs-- Part 1: Japan Attacks China

These are continued from my Cooter's History Thing blog.  Every one of my seven blogs today will be about Pearl Harbor.


July 7:  Japan invades China, launching the attack across Manchuria.

December 13:  The Rape of Nanking--  mass killings and other atrocities by Japanese soldiers -- begins in China.


June 11:  U.S. condemns Japan's bombing of China.  Later, a U.S. "moral embargo" opposes sale of aircraft to nations attacking civilians.


Wednesday, December 6, 2017

Crew of the USS Constitution Welcomes Public for Tree Lighting

From the November 26, 2017, San Francisco Gate.

Next weekend (well, last weekend now) a Christmas tree will be lighted on the old ship's deck.  It is the world's oldest commissioned warship.

The event took place at 4 p.m. on December 3.

There will be holiday carolers and a visit by Santa Claus and the tree will be decorated with handmade ornaments from Boston's Charlestown neighborhoods.

The USS Constitution is moored in Charlestown.

I saw no mention of whether or not the lights were electric or candles.


Thomas Chambers-- Part 3: Marine Paintings

One of his paintings was "New York Harbor With Pilot Boat 'George Washington"  circa mid-nineteenth century.

Chambers was somewhat obscure in his lifetime, but became famous in the 20th century with the discovery of a rare signed painting of the battle between the USS Constitution and the HMS Guerriere, ca. 1845.

His War of 1812 naval paintings are described as "singularly flamboyant" and he had an "expressive style and bold decoration sensibility."


Thomas Chambers, Naval Painter-- Part 2: Moved Around a Lot

From 1834 to 1840, Thomas Chambers was listed as a landscape or marine painter in the New York City directory.  From 1843 to 1851, he lived in Boston, then moved to Albany, New York, and lived there until 1857.

 Subsequently, he was again listed in the New York City directory from 1858 to 1859 and then back to Boston 1860 to 1861 and back to New York again from 1862 to 1866.  His whereabouts after that are not known.

Certainly a lot of moving from place to place.

Tuesday, December 5, 2017

Thomas Chambers, Maritime Artist-- Part 1: Born in London

From the January 10, 2017, Art Collector  "10 Classic Marine Paintings, War of 1812, With Footnotes.

Thomas Chambers  (1808-1866 or after)

Born in London, immigrated to U.S. in 1832.  Painter of landscapes and marine scenes.  he not only painted what he saw but also used his imagination and popular engraved images.

A number of his War of 1812 depictions of War of 1812 naval battles are based on engravings.


Sea Battle Paintings Sale at Auction

From Christie's September Sampling.

Sold in September.

If you had some extra bucks hanging around you could have some wonderful War of 1812 sea battle paintings.

The first one is believed to have been the battle between the frigates USS United States and the HMS Macedonian.  This was painted by Thomas Chambers.  It sold for 175% above the estimate.

There was also a pair of paintings of the War of 1812 sea battle between the USS United States and the Macedonian and the USS Constitution vs. the HMS Guerriere attributed to Michele Felice Corne.  They sold for 150% above estimate, for $25,000.


Monday, December 4, 2017

Stokely Donelson Hays-- Part 5: A Big Man

From Find-A-Grave

One source called him "the finest looking man in Jackson (Tn) in the early days of the city."  Another said he "Possessed much personal magnetism."

He was described as over six feet tall and weighed 200 pounds.

Stokely Hays died of bilious fever after returning home from Clinton, Mississippi, where he was tending to his business as a land registrar

Burial is at Riverside Cemetery in Jackson, Tennessee.

His gravestone reads:  S.D. Hays, Qtr.Mr. Gen. Jackson's Div., Tenn Vols., Creek War War of 1812, Dec. 1788, Sept. 8, 1831.

Stokely Donelson Hays-- Part 4: Rose Through the Ranks

Even though he was a private in that last story, he did rise through the ranks as can be seen here:

Coffee's Brigade, Cavalry and Mounted Gunmen, Tennessee Volunteers

Coffee's Regiment, Cavalry, West Tennessee Volunteers, Lieutenant, paymaster

Jackson's Division, Tennessee Volunteers, Quartermaster General


Saturday, December 2, 2017

Stokely Donelson Hays-- Part 3: A Good Story

There was a good story about Stokely Hays and Andrew Jackson.

Hays was serving as a private and on sentry duty once when Andrew Jackson rode up to him, stopped and handed hays a letter.  Hays read it while the general waited, then handed it back to him.  Jackson then rode away.

A nearby officer watched what was happening and afterwards called out to Hays, asking his name.

"Hays, sir," was to reply.

"You seem acquainted with the general."

"Oh yes, sir.  He is my uncle -- that is, you know, my uncle up home in Tennessee."

The officer asked, "What is he here?"

"Oh here he is the the general, sir."

Then the officer asked why hays was just a private.

"Well, sir.  That doesn't make any difference to him.  So long as I am here with a gun, he's satisfied."

That Old Jackson!  --Brock-Perry

Stokely Donelson Hays-- Part 2: The Fight Between Andrew Jackson and the Bentons

OIn September 1813, Andrew Jackson, Gen. John Coffee and Stokely hays deliberately strolled by the Nashville City Hotel where they knew Thomas Hart Benton and his brother Jesse were staying.  A feud had been brewing between Jackson and the Bentons and they were there to provoke it even more.

Both sides had threatened the other.  And, a confrontation occurred.  never one to back down from a fight, Andrew Jackson was wounded and the others fought.  Jackson just barely survived his wound.

Sounds like the making a a good book.

Stokely Hays fought with Jackson and Coffee in the Creek War and at the Battle of New Orleans.


Friday, December 1, 2017

Stokely Donelson Hays-- Part 1: Along With Aaron Burr

From Genealogy Trails.


First son of Col. Robert Hays and his wife Jane Donelson, daughter of Nashville pioneer John Donelson.

Robert hays was a close and personal friend and brother-in-law of Andrew Jackson.  Stokely spent his time growing up between his parents' plantation and Andrew Jackson's Hermitage with his aunt and uncle.

In 1806, Andrew Jackson permitted his nephew to accompany Aaron Burr to Louisiana to keep an eye on him and report anything suspicious that Burr might do.  This led to Burr's arrest for treason.


Andrew Jackson's Nephew's Grave Marked: Stokely Donelson Hays

From the November 10, 2017, Jackson (Tennessee) Sun "Daughters of 1812 mark grave for Andrew Jackson's nephew at Riverside" Gail Bailey.

The Tulip Chapter, Tennessee Society of the United States Daughters of 1812 had a grave marking ceremony for Stokely Donelson Hays, nephew of Andrew Jackson.  He was a spy on Aaron Burr during the incident in Louisiana for which Burr was later tried for treason.

He was the son of Col. Robert Hay and Jane Donelson Hays and born in December 1788 and saw service in the Creek War and the War of 1812.

After the war, he was a surveyor, lawyer, commissioner and land register in Jackson and Madison County.

He died September 8, 1831 in Jackson.

One of the early settlers in Jackson after having moved there from Nashville.


Thursday, November 30, 2017

Sylvanue Thayer, Father of West Point"-- Part 6: Long and Distinguished Career

From 1814-1815, Sylvanue Thayer was on professional duty to Europe, examining fortifications, military schools and the establishment and operation of the Allied armies then occupying France after the fall of Napoleon.

He was the superintendent of the United States Military Academy at West Point, New York, from July 28, 1817 to July 1, 1833.

From 1833 to 1843, he was Superintendent of Engineers during the construction of Forts Warren and Independence in Boston Harbor.

On professional duty to Europe in 1846 and general supervisor for harbor improvements in Maine and Massachusetts 1836-1843.

He was on sick leave of absence from 1858-1963.


Wednesday, November 29, 2017

Sylvanus Thayer, Father of West Point-- Part 5: War of 1812 Service

During the War of 1812, he was Chief Engineer of the Northern Army under command of Major General Dearborn in the campaign of 1812.

Then of the Right Division of the Northern Army under Major General Hampton, to whom he was Aide-de-Camp in the Campaign of 1813.

He fought in the Battle of Chateauguay River October 26, 1813, under the command of Brevet Brigadier General Porter in the Defense of Norfolk, Virginia, in 1814.


Tuesday, November 28, 2017

Sylvanus Thayer, Father of West Point-- Part 4: Ranks

From Cullom's register of USMA.

Ranks held by Sylvanus Thayer

2nd Lt.  Corps of Engineers  Feb. 23, 1808  Upon graduation from USMA
1st Lt., Corps of Engineers--  July 1, 1812

Captain--  Staff Department Commissary of Ordnance--  Sept. 22, 1812
Capt., Corps of Engineers--  Oct. 13, 1813

Brevet Major--  Feb. 20, 1815 for Distinctive and meritorious service
Brevet Lt.-Col.--  March 3, 1823

Major, Corps of Engineers--  May 24, 1824
Brevet Col.--  March 3, 1833

Lt.-Col., Corps of Engineers--  July 7, 1838
Col., Corps of Engineers--  March 3, 1863

Brevet Brig. Gen.--  May 31, 1863
Retired from active service June 1, 1863

Served for more than 45 years.

Died September 7, 1872 at Braintree, Massachusetts.  Buried at West Point.


Monday, November 27, 2017

Sylvanus Thayer-- Part 3: Cullom's Register

From Cullom's Register.

Sylvanus Thayer was the 33rd graduate of the USMA at West Point.  Class of 1808.

1808-1809:  Surveyed sites and plans for batteries to defend New Haven and Stonington harbors in Connecticut.
Inspected Fort Trumbull, Ct.  As Asst. Engineer worked on construction of Massachusetts defenses (Fort Warren).

1809-1811:  At USMA, West Point.

1811-1812: Asst. Engineer N.Y. harbor defenses.

Friday, November 24, 2017

Sylvanus Thayer-- Part 2: His Years At the USMA

In 1817, President Madison appointed him superintendent of West Point after the resignation of Captain Albert Partridge.  He held that position until 1833 while establishing numerous traditions and policies that continue in use to today.

He stressed honor, responsibility, strict mental and physical discipline and the demerit system.  (I used the demerit point system when I was teaching.)  Many of the cadets attending West Point during his tenure went on to important positions in the Mexican War and Civil War.

He resigned in 1833 after a disagreement with President Jackson.


Wednesday, November 22, 2017

Sylvanus Thayer-- Part 1: "The Father of West Point"

From Wikipedia.

June 9, 1785-September 7, 1872

Known as "The Father of West Point" for his work at the military academy in its early years.

Born in Braintree, Massachusetts.  Graduated from Dartmouth College in 1807 and then went to West Point and graduated with the Class of 1808, after just one year.  He superintended the construction of Fort Warren (later renamed Fort Winthrop) in Boston Harbor.

During the War of 1812 he directed the defense of Norfolk, Virginia and was promoted to major.  In 1815, he went to France to study their military and engineering.


Tuesday, November 21, 2017

Fort Nelson-- Part 3: Built, Rebuilt and Torn Down

Built by Benedict Arnold for a 150-man garrison.  Some entrenchments built in 1774.  In 1779 it was nearly surrounded both land and sea by British forces and evacuated.  The British destroyed it.

When the First System Fort was built, it was named for Virginia Governor Thomas Nelson and built in 1794 and rebuilt in 1804.

Rebuilt as a Second System Fort in 1808 and mounted 37 guns.  Its garrison was moved to Fort Monroe in 1823 and the fort torn down to make way for the Naval Hospital.  Some of Fort Nelson's bricks were reused in the construction of the hospital.


Monday, November 20, 2017

Fort Norfolk, Virginia-- Part 2: Occupied By Confederates and Federals During Civil War

The United States Navy acquired the fort in 1849 and used it as a weapons depot.  Confederates occupied it 1861-1862 and then the Union reoccupied it for the remainder of the war.

In 1921, the Army Corps of Engineers moved in and in 1983 moved out after building the large Waterford Building.

It is still owned by the Army Corps of Engineers, but run by the Norfolk Historical Society.  Fort Norfolk is the last surviving harbor fort authorized by George Washington in 1794.

The Friends of Fort Norfolk and 2nd Virginia Regiment provide free admission to the fort and guided tours on the weekends.


Friday, November 17, 2017

Fort Norfolk, Virginia-- Part 1: First and Second System Fort

From the History of Fort Norfolk.

In the last posts, I wrote about Fort Nelson, built to defend Norfolk, Virginia.  It was built opposite Fort Norfolk.  Some more on that fort.

There was an earlier fortification at the site dating 1776-1779.  It was a First System Fort built 1794, mainly an earthwork.  It was later rebuilt into a masonry fort of the second System in 1808 and designed for 30 guns, but only ten were ever mounted.

It never saw action in the War of 1812 because the British were repulsed by the fort on Craney Island.


Thursday, November 16, 2017

Captain Ethan Alphonso Allen


Born October 24, 1789 in Burlington, Vermont.  Died Jan. 6, 1855.

Buried Elmwood Cemetery in Norfolk, Virginia, plot IMP-B6 9-L12-S16.

Son of Ethan Allen of Revolutionary fame.

Fort Nelson-- Part 2: Two Locations

From Fort Wiki.

Fort nelson was attacked and burned down 9 May 1779 and rebuilt at another location in 1794 and abandoned in 1824.

The garrison abandoned it in the 1779 attack.

The second site of Fort Nelson was chosen opposite of Fort Norfolk on the west side of Norfolk  harbor and was a bastioned earthwork with two batteries of 24-pdrs in embrasures.


Fort Nelson, Norfolk, Virginia-- Part 1

From the Colonial site.

In the last post I mentioned that Captain Hannibal Montresor Allen was buried at Fort Nelson with its cemetery unknown.  Couldn't remember it, so had to look it up.

It was located on the site of the present-day Portsmouth Naval Hospital in Virginia.  During Virginia's revolution, the government constructed a fort of timber and rammed earth in 1776.  Three years later, the British fleet under Admiral Sir George Collier came and confiscated the artillery and destroyed most of the parapet.

The fort was reconstructed in 1799 of earth lined with with brick following a design by architect B. Henry Latrobe and was again abandoned after the War of 1812.

The Confederates strengthened Fort Nelson during the Civil War, but on 10 May 1862, the Union Army under General John E. Wool occupied Norfolk and Fort Nelson.


Wednesday, November 15, 2017

Captain Hannibal Montesor Allen

From Find-a-Grave.

Born Novemebr 24, 1787, in Burlington Vermont.  Died January 20, 1813.

Died of yellow fever and buried at Fort Nelson.  Cemetery unknown.

Son of Ethan Allen of Revolutionary War fame.


Tuesday, November 14, 2017

Grave of Hiram Simpson Marked-- Part 2: Saw Action art Fort Erie

Derrick Monument Co. of LeRoy and Ideal Burial Vault Co. of Corfu installed both stones.

Records show Hiram Simpson continually moving west from the time he was born near Glen Falls and then spent his childhood in Scipio, and then moved to Troupburg where he joined the New York militia.

He returned there after seeing action at Fort Erie, Ontario.  Later, he and Nancy and their seven children lived in East Pembroke.

Despite land grants in Iowa and Arkansas available to him, Hiram stayed in East Pembroke and died in 1867.  Wife Nancy died in 1881, a year after receiving the last allotment from the war's pension fund for widows.


Grave of Hiram Simpson Marked-- Part 1

From the October 9, 2017, Genesee County (NY) Daily News "Group honors War of 1812 veteran with new marker in East Pembroke" Jim Krenick.

Christine Holley was working on her Daughters of the American Revolution credentials and while doing so, found the name Hiram Simpson.

He married his wife Nancy in June 1812, but no one knew where he was buried, but some graves at the back of Hillside Cemetery were relocated to another cemetery.  The VA responded to a request by Holley and the National Society of the United States Daughters of the War of 1812 Niagara chapter.  The VA gave a new headstone.


Another Veteran's Grave Marked: William Hamilton

From the Nov. 7, 2017, Hot Springs (Arkansas) Village Voice.

The Texas and Arkansas Societies of the United States Daughters of the War of 1812 marked the grave of William Hamilton at Old Baptist Cemetery in Russellville, Arkansas.

This was the group's second grave marking in one week and they have another marking planned for within three weeks.

Much work has to be done when they mark a grave.  They must prove service, locate the grave, obtain approval, obtain a grave stone if needed as well as planning and coordinating the ceremony.

The U.S. Daughters of the War of 1812 have identified approximately 760 War of 1812 veterans buried in Arkansas and have marked the graves of about 160 of them.  Their goal is to mark all the remaining 600.

Great Job ladies.  --Brock-Perry

Monday, November 13, 2017

The Marines in the War of 1812-- Part 2: Frigate Action

Marine detachments took place in the great frigate fights which resulted in many American victories.  They acquired the reputation as marksmen in ship-to-ship actions.

On 27 April 1813, they assisted the U.S. Army in Colonel Winfield Scott's attack on York, Upper Canada (now Toronto).

Under Navy Commodore Joshua Barney and Captain Samuel Miller, they helped delay the British advance on Washington, D.C., at the Battle of Bladensburg by holding the line after the Army and militia retreated, though they were eventually overcome.  Tradition hold s it that the British did not destroy the Marine Barracks and Commandant's house when they burned Washington out of respect for their fight at Bladensburg, though it is thought that they might have been intending to use them as headquarters.

There is also an unfounded tale that two Marine NCOs buried treasure there to prevent its capture.

At the Battle of New Orleans they held the center of Andrew Jackson's defensive line.

During the war, the Marines had 46 killed and 66 wounded.


Saturday, November 11, 2017

War of 1812 Veterans Buried in Bond County, Illinois

 Good day to visit these men if you're living around Bond County, Illinois.

BONHAM HARLAN--  Born 1785 in Lincoln County, Kentucky.  Died 1840.  Buried in Camp Ground Cemetery in Greenville.  2nd W. Tennessee  Militia.  (I had to look up Lincoln County and found it was named after Revolutionary War General Benjamin Lincoln, not the later president.  Abraham Lincoln was not born in 1785.)

NICHOLAS KOONCE--  Born Dec. 25, 1788.  Died April 26, 1859.  Buried Old City Cemetery in Greenville.  Private Va. Militiamen.

ARCHIBALD MITCHELL--  Born May 22, 1791 in Woodford County, Kentucky.  Died Feb. 10, 1872, in Bond County.  Buried at Union Grove Cemetery in Ayers.

JOHN REEVES--  Born May 13, 1795.  Died Nov. 21, 1877 in Bond County.  Buried Maxey Cemetery in Greenville.

JEREMIAH STUBBLEFIELD--  Born 1789 in Jackson County, Georgia  Died in Bond County August 20, 1874.  Buried Maxey Cemetery in Greenville.  W Tennessee Militia.

Quite a few Southerners moving to Bond County at some point after the war.

Veterans Day 2017.  --Brock-Perry

War of 1812 Veterans Buried in Bond County, Illinois-- Part 1

From Wikipedia.

Bond County is in the southern Part of Illinois, near St. Louis.

This being Veterans Day, those of you living in the area can visit these graves and pay your respects to our War of 1812 veterans.

AMOS P. BALCH--  Born 1774 in North Carolina  Died August 27, 1846.  Buried Union Grove Cemetery in Ayers, Illinois

WELSHIER BUCHANAN--  Born July 14, 1781 in Virginia.  Died Feb. 3, 1857.  Buried Camp Ground Cemetery in Greenville.  7th Kentucky Militia.

JOHN ELZIER--  Born 1790  Died March 8, 1859.  Buried Old City Cemetery in Greenville.  Private 21st Va. Militia.

JOHN WESLEY FLOYD--  Born Feb. 18, 1789 in Louisville, Ky.  Died Jan. 4, 1848.  Buried Camp Ground Cemetery in Greenville.  Sergeant in the war.


Friday, November 10, 2017

The Marines in the War of 1812-- Part 1: Sackets Harbor

From Wikipedia.

The first land action of the Marines in the War of 1812 was the establishment of an advanced base at Sackets Harbor, New York, by 63 Marines.  This gave the Navy a base on the shores of Lake Ontario.  Sackets Harbor later became the headquarters of the Navy for all action on the Great Lakes..

Marines helped defeat two British attacks on Sackets Harbor (the First and Second Battles of Sackets Harbor.

They later also established a base at Erie, Pennsylvania, where Oliver Hazard Perry's fleet at the Battle of Lake Erie was built.


Thursday, November 9, 2017

USS Constellation Goes for Reconstruction-- Part 2

In the War of 1812, the Constellation sailed from Washington, D.C. to Hampton Roads, Virginia, and immediately was blockaded by the British at Norfolk.

The current USS Constellation was built in 1854, using a small amount of material from the original ship which had been disassembled in 1853.

The ship has been patched and rebuilt several times, so definitely is not the original ship.


The USS Constellation Setting Sail for Reconstruction-- Part 1

From the October 26, 2017, WMAR ABC 2, Baltimore, Md.

The USS Constellation is a veteran of the War of 1812 and the Civil War and can usually be found in Baltimore's Inner Harbor, but on Thursday, October 26, is set sail.  It sailed to Fort McHenry and fired a salute and turned around.

The reconstruction is part of the Living Classroom Foundation's effort.

The Constellation first sailed in 1797 and participated in the Quasi War with France where it captured a French frigate and two French privateers.


Wednesday, November 8, 2017

Ceremony to Honor Private William Hamilton, War of 1812 Veteran

From the October 24, 2017, Russellville (Arkansas) Courier News.

The Texas and Arkansas Societies, U.S. daughters of the War of 1812, gathered at the Old Baptist cemetery, in Russellville to mark the grave and hold a commemorative service for War of 1812 veteran Private William Hamilton.

His great-great-great granddaughter, Mary Anne Norman Davidson gave a talk on his life.

His grave now has one of those brass War of 1812 veteran markers.


Veterans Day Ceremony at Greenwood Cemetery

From the October 24, 2017, Canon City (Colorado) Daily Record.

This is an annual event and this year took place on November 4 at Greenwood Pioneer Cemetery.

The Sons of the War of 1812 will present a program to honor Milby Smith who served in both the War of 1812 and the Mexican War.

They received a gravestone to mark his grave a year ago.

Milby Smith was born March 10, 1794 and at the age of 18 served in the New York militia and at the age of 56 was in the Mexican War.  he is one of just two War of 1812 veterans buried in Colorado.

At 11 a.m., Ron bates will speak on the GAR monument at the cemetery.  Both Union and Confederate Civil War veterans are buried in the cemetery as well.


Tuesday, November 7, 2017

A Walk in the Cemetery: Two War of 1812 Veterans Buried in Marshall Cemetery

From the October 31, 2017, Independent (Minnesota)  "A walk in the cemetery finds a four-time war hero"  Jody Isaacson.

Marshall Cemetery, Marshall, Minnesota.  Thomas Hicks and Joseph Fifield served in the War of 1812.  They are the only two Minnesota soldiers in the area to serve in that war according to Arthur Finnell, author of "Known War of 1812 Veterans Buried in Minnesota."

Both came considerably after the war to live in Minnesota, as late as 1870.  They weren't born in Minnesota (which wasn't a state during the war), but came later as pioneers or to live with relatives in their declining years.

Thomas Hicks was originally buried in the Catholic Cemetery east of Marshall, but was reburied at Marshall Cemetery in 1921.


Monday, November 6, 2017

Last Survivor of the Battle of Baltimore-- Part 2

Elijah B. Glenn was the "last survivor" of the "Old Defenders" who had saved Baltimore from the British attack in September 1814, which led to the writing of "The Star Spangled Banner."

He died July 25, 1898, at the age of 102 at the home of his granddaughter, Mrs. John Barcklow.

He joined the Maryland Militia as a private at the age of 18 and served in Captain Peter Pinney's company of the 27th Maryland Regiment and also fought the British at the Battle of North Point.


Last Survivor of the Battle of Baltimore-- Part 1

From the November 4, 2017, Cecil Whig  "Ask the Historical Society: Last 'Defender.'"

Someone had heard that the last survivor of the Battle of Baltimore was from Cecil County and asked the question.

In 1896, the Utica Morning herald reported that only 14 pensioners remained from the War of 1812.

One of them was Elijah B. Glenn, a centenarian.

He was born at Carpenter's Point in 1796  (There is some confusion as to his last name in the article as it was given originally as Green and then Gleen.  I also found it listed as Glenn.  I am going with Glenn.)


Montgomery Bell-- Part 3: His Money used for the Montgomery Bell Academy

Montgomery Bell gave $20,000 in his will to educate children ages 10-14 who would otherwise not be able to get an education and that bequest has resulted in the Montgomery Bell Academy in Nashville, Tennessee

The Montgomery Bell Academy was established in 1867 as the successor to two previous schools, one of which was the Western Military Institute, which Sam Davis, the "Boy Hero of the Confederacy" attended and the University of Nashville.

In 1881, the school moved to an estate and received the name Montgomery Bell Academy because of his endowment to the school with the stipulation that it remain all male.

It still exists.


Saturday, November 4, 2017

Montgomery Bell-- Part 2: Emancipated His Slaves

Montgomery Bell immediately began to enlarge the operations by building other furnaces and mills.

In 1808, he was buying wood at 50 cents a cord to fire the Cumberland Furnace which cast cannon balls used by Andrew Jackson at the Battle of New Orleans.

He built a home called Bell View.  His business interests were severely hurt by the Panic of 1819.

By 1835, he had sent fifty of his freed slaves to Liberia and in 1853, sent fifty more.  Eventually he emancipated 150 more.  He even went so far as to hire a teacher from Philadelphia to teach them how to read and write, something that was very illegal at the time.


Friday, November 3, 2017

Montgomery Bell-- Part 1: "The Iron Master of Middle Tennessee


Born June 3, 1769 in Chester County, Pennsylvania.  Died April 1, 1855, in Dickson County, Tennessee.

A manufacturing entrepreneur who was credited for much of the economic development of early Middle Tennessee.  He earned the title "Iron Master of Middle Tennessee."  He also founded one of the largest non-sectarian all-boys private secondary schools in the country.that still bears his name.

He purchased James Robertson's ironworks at Cumberland Furnace, Tennessee, in 1804 for $16,000.


Montgomery Bell State Park

Montgomery Bell has a state park in the state named for him.

A Tennessee State Park located east of Dickson, Tennessee, off US-70.

Consists of an inn, cabins, a restaurant called the Forge Room and a conference center.


Cumberland Furnace-- Part 2: Montgomery Bell's Ironworks

The Highland Rim around Nashville and area was found to have abundant iron ore deposits, so locating in the area was a natural choice.

In 1793, General James Robertson and William Sheppard purchased 640 acres from James Campbell, a private in North Carolina's Continental Line during the American Revolution.  They erected a furnace for an ironworks.

It was in operation by 1796.  In 1804, Montgomery Bell of Chester, Pennsylvania, bought the furnace for $16,000 and built a second furnace and by 1812 had a contract to furnish the U.S. government with cannon shot, gunpowder and whiskey.  (Not sure what the whiskey had to do with the ironworks.  It must have been a side business for Bell.)

During the War of 1812, Montgomery Bell became the chief supplier of heavy armaments for both the Navy and Andrew Jackson's army.


Thursday, November 2, 2017

Cumberland Furnace, Tennessee-- Part 1: Still a Town There

From Wikipedia.

In the last post I mentioned the Tennessee militia on their way to New Orleans in November 1814 having cannonballs made by Ironmaster Montgomery Bell from his Cumberland Furnace.

There is still an unincorporated town of Cumberland Furnace in Dickson County.  It, of course, received its name from the ironworks.  The Cumberland Furnace Historical District was designated September 28, 1988.

Cumberland Furnace is the oldest community south of the Cumberland River between Nashville and Clarksville.


Wednesday, November 1, 2017

Tennessee Volunteer Militia Leave Clarksville for New Orleans

The Tennessee Volunteer Militia left Clarksville, Tennessee, on November 15, 1814 and got to New Orleans in time to take part in the night battle on December 23, 1814, and then the decisive Battle of New Orleans on January 8, 1815.

In addition to guns, powder and supplies, the transport boats also carried cannonballs made by Ironmaster Montgomery Bell from his Cumberland Furnace in Dickson County.

Clarksville had a reenactment of the event on November 15, 2014, two hundred years later.  Bicentennial, you know.


Tuesday, October 31, 2017

Andy and Clarksville-- Part 3: "Old Hickory"

In February 1813, Andrew Jackson learned that the War Department had ordered him to disband his army and send them home.  He refused to do that and said he'd would instead lead them back home himself.

He them marched them back to Tennessee and was really hard on his force, so tough that the men said he was "Tough as Hickory," from whence he got the name "Old Hickory."

Once back in Nashville, he got involved in a duel as a second between Jesse Benton, Thomas Hart Benton's brother and William Carroll (Later Tennessee governor).   The duel fortunately did not result in any deaths.

Later there was a free-for-all fight between Thomas Hart Benton and Jackson.

Boys Will be Boys.  --Brock-Perry

Monday, October 30, 2017

Clarksville and Andy-- Part 2: Andrew Arrives in Town

On January 13, 1813, Andrew Jackson arrived in Clarksville, Tennessee, on the first of 13 boats carrying infantry on their first leg of a voyage down the Mississippi to stop the British in the Gulf of Mexico area.  Cavalrymen, including 31 from Montgomery County were moving overland to join him.

Jackson's quartermaster, Thomas Hart Benton, was in Clarksville and reputedly brandished a bayonet on local merchants to get them to sell 160 barrels of flour.  They did, but Benton ended up paying $8 a barrel instead of the current going rate of $5.50.

Jackson then continued on his journey, finally arriving at Natchez, Mississippi, where he received rumors that the British were amassing 14,000 troops in the West Indies for the purpose of capturing New Orleans.

Jackson prepared to go there to defend the city.

Thursday, October 26, 2017

Clarksville, Tn., and Andy in the War of 1812-- Part 1: British meddling In Indian Affairs

From the November 2, 2014, Clarksville (Tn) Leaf-Chronicle "Remember When: Andy and Tennessee in the War of 1812" by Rubye Patch.

The last two posts were about Tennessee militia leaving Clarksville to go to fight with Andrew Jackson at New Orleans at the Battle of New Orleans in 1815.  A marker was placed by where they left Clarksville for their river trip.

As it turns out, in this article, the general and militia had left from the same place the year before in what ended up as a move down the Mississippi that was ordered back by the U.S. government.

A big reason for the War of 1812 was British meddling with American Indians and getting them to resist and fight white settlers moving into their territory.  This was a huge reason Tennessee supported the war.


Wednesday, October 25, 2017

Marker Dedication in Tennessee-- Part 2: Sponsored By the Andrew Jackson Foundation

Later, there will be a talk by Dr. Tom Kanon, archivist of the Tennessee State Library and Archives, and author of "Tennessee At War, 1812-1815."

The free presentation is sponsored by the Andrew Jackson Foundation and is just one of the events taking place throughout Tennessee in commemoration of the 250th birthday of the 7th president of the United States, Andrew Jackson.

Andrew Jackson was born March 15, 1767 and died June 8, 1845.


Marker Dedication in Tennessee-- Part 1: With Jackson to New Orleans

From the October 4, 2017, Clarksville (Tn) Online  "War of 1812 talk, marker dedication set for October 15th."

The Clarksville-Montgomery County Arts and Heritage Council along with the Customs House Museum will unveil a historical highway marker commemorating Clarksville's role in the War of 1812.

It will be placed at Riverside Drive near the site where Tennessee militia boarded flatboats for the long journey to fight with Jackson at the Battle of New Orleans.

The marker will be unveiled between 2 and 4 p.m. at the Customs House Museum.


Tuesday, October 24, 2017

N.C.'s War of 1812 Personalities-- Part 4: Otway Burns and Johnston Blakely

OTWAY BURNS--  From Onslow County.  Ship captain and shipbuilder.  Licensed privateer operating along the Atlantic Coast and captured many British ships and supplies.

JOHNSTON BLAKELY--  Lived in Wilmington and Pittsboro.  Attended UNC and went into a Naval career, commanded several warships.  Made quite a name for himself when he sailed around England during the war, destroying much British shipping.

On his last voyage, after capturing a valuable ship, he put a prize crew on board to take it to the United States and sailed east, but soon smoke was seen on the horizon and the fate of Captain Blakely and his crew are still unknown.

Later the N.C. General Assembly gave his young daughter a handsome tea service and provided money for her education.


Monday, October 23, 2017

N.C.'s War of 1812 Personalities-- Part 3: Dolley Madison and Benjamin Forsyth

DOLLEY PAYNE MADISON  Born in the Quaker village of New Garden in Guilford County, N.C., but only lived there for a year before moving to Virginia.  Wife of President James Madison and most known for saving objects out of the Executive Mansion when the British captured Washington, D.C.

She saved the famous painting of George Washington.  The British burned the Executive Mansion and when it was rebuilt, its walls were painted white and it became known as the White House.

BENJAMIN FORSYTH   From Stokes County, N.C..  Lt.-Col. in U.S. Army who distinguished himself along the Northern Border during the War of 1812.  Killed at Odelltown in Canada in 1814.  Like Brigadier General Francis Nash in the Revolutionary War, he came to be regarded as a hero.

The State of North Carolina presented his 8-year-old son a beautiful sword and awarded him $250 a year for seven years.  A N.C. county was named for him in 1849.


North Carolina's War of 1812 Personalities-- Part 2

Andrew Duppstadt will makes his presentation on the lives of five persons with North Carolina connections who played roles in the War of 1812.

The five are

Benjamin Forsyth
Dolley Payne Madison
Otway Burns
Johnston Blakely
Nathaniel Macon

I have written about many of these people in this blog.


Sunday, October 22, 2017

North Carolina's War of 1812 Personalities-- Part 1

From the October Newsletter of the Federal Point Historical Society.

On Monday, October 16, at 7:30 p.m., the Society will have a meeting and presentation at the Federal Point History Center at 1121A North Lake Park Boulevard, adjacent to the Carolina Beach, North Carolina, Town Hall.  (Carolina Beach is south of Wilmington.

Presenter will be Andrew Duppstadt, Program Development and Training Officer, Historic Weapons Program coordinator, N.C. Division of Historic Sites, North Carolina Department of Natural and Cultural Resources.

He also used to have a blog on the Civil War Navy, which I miss a lot.  I still have one on the Civil War Navy.

His presentation is "North Carolina's War of 1812 Personalities."


Wednesday, October 18, 2017

No Ontario Town Should Bear the Name of a Racist and Killer-- Part 2

A commemorative plaque to Jefferson Davis was removed from a Hudson's Bay Company building in downtown Montreal this past August.  Of course, Hudson Bay Company were not exactly righteous with Indians either.

The Southern Poverty Law Center reports that since 2015 to April 2017, at least 60 symbols of the Confederacy have been removed.

This group keeps close tally on Confederate monuments, especially those that remain and wants all taken down.  Kind of a racist thing if you ask me.

Amherst not only alienated the Native Peoples, but also the French Dominicans, Cubans and people of Martinique.

In 1760, during the French and Indian War, he captured Montreal, ending French rule in North America,

The Purge Comes to Canada.  --Brock-Perry

Monday, October 16, 2017

No Ontario Town Should Bear the Name of a Racist and Killer-- Part 1: Confederate Hatred Hits Canadian History

From the October 2, 2017 Huff Post by James Winter.

So, the Confederate hatred has reached Canada.

Jeffrey Amherst, of England, wanted to use small pox-infected blankets to eradicate Native American people.

His name is on Amherstburg, Ontario.  Amherstburg with its Fort Malden was a major British base during the War of 1812.

"Towns in the southern United States recently have torn down statues of bigots who promoted slavery."  We kind of know where Mr. Winter stands on the issue.

It would appear that Mr. Winter is a purgemeister.

This History Purge Thing Just Keeps Spreading.  --Brock-Perry

Sunday, October 15, 2017

Col. Samuel Boyer Davis-- Part 2: Built Delamore Place

When Davis helped rescue the family of a French baron from the island of Santo Domingo during a 1792 slave insurrection, he met and fell in love with the baron's daughter Rose and they married.  Later they moved to New Orleans where he became a wealthy landowner.

At the outbreak of the War of 1812, he was commissioned a lieutenant-colonel in the 32nd U.S. Infantry and assigned to the task of defending the entrance to Delaware Bay, which included where he was born, Lewes.

He built an imposing home there he called Delamore Place outside of Wilmington, Delaware.

After the war, he lived in Philadelphia and was a member of the Pennsylvania legislature.

He is buried at the Wilmington & Brandywine Cemetery in Wilmington, Delaware.


Thursday, October 12, 2017

Col. Samuel Boyer Davis, Defender of Lewes-- Part 1: A French Connection

From Find-A-Grave.

In my October 3, 2017, blog entry, I mentioned War of 1812 Lewes, Delaware defender Col. Samuel Boyer Davis having lived at Fisher's Paradise house in Lewes.

Some more information on him.

He was born in Lewes, Delaware, December 26, 1765 and died September 5, 1854 in  New Castle County, Delaware.

Davis developed a love of the sea at an early age and made many voyages across the Atlantic to France where he eventually joined the French Navy.

An Interesting Life.  --Brock-Perry

Work Continues On Quad-Cities Monument-- Part 2: Black Hawk Vs. Americans

A cleanup will be held October 11 and they are asking for help from the public.

They are also seeking monetary contributions to repair the low perimeter wall around the monument.

The Battle of Campbell's Island pitted Chief Black Hawk and his Sauk Indians, around 500 of them, against a group of American soldiers in small boats.  Sixteen Americans were killed and it is not known how many Indians.

Lt. John Campbell was in charge of the Americans.

The monument was erected in 1906 by the State of Illinois and  the DAR chapter and is a white granite obelisk with four plaques around the base.  One is a bronze relief sculpture of the battle.


Wednesday, October 11, 2017

Work Continues on Monument in the Quad Cities-- Part 1

From the September 29, 2017, Quad-Cities Times  "Work continues on War of 1812 monument" by Alma Gaul.

The work on the bas-relief bronze sculpture depicting the Battle of Campbell's Island, created by sculptor Albert Louis Vander Berghen is nearing completion.

Volunteers from the Moline Chapter Mary Little Deere Daughters of the American Revolution have been making headway on the monument, located on Campbell Island in the Mississippi River.  They have also gotten the State of Illinois to blacktop and stripe the parking lot.

The Davey Tree Service has removed a dead tree and there is a new sidewalk around it.


Tuesday, October 10, 2017

St. Michael and All Angels Church, England

French prisoners started construction of the church and it was finished by Americans as the Napoleonic Wars were over.  The first service was held in the church 2 January 1814.  Essentially, a lot of the reason the church was built was to provide the prisoners with something to do.

The last American prisoners left Dartmoor 10 February 1816 and the church was closed and locked.

During the time it was open, nearly 1,500 French and 218 Americans died at Dartmoor Prison.

In 1831, the local villagers reopened the church and services were held until 1994 when it was closed and offered for sale, but there were no buyers.  The Church of England's Historic Buildings Trust took it over and the steeple was restored and the structure waterproofed.  Work has also been done on the exterior.

At least it won't be lost.


Dartmoor Prison and St, Michael Church-- Part 2: American Prisoners from Dartmoor Helped Build the Church

American prisoners started arriving at Dartmoor in 1813 and found the prison to be overcrowded, cold and damp.  Disease set in.  One American prisoner described it as, "an incredibly bleak place.  It is either rainy, snowy or foggy the entire year round."

As they were leaving, the couple were told to visit the church "up the road" because "your people helped to build it."  That would be St. Michael and All Angels Church.  So, the Americans who finished the church were from the infamous Dartmoor Prison.


Monday, October 9, 2017

Dartmoor Prison and St. Michael Church-- Part 3: Stained Glass East Window

French and American prisoners from Dartmoor worked side by side to build the Church of St. Michael and All Angels from locally quarried granite and sits atop a high elevation.

There is a stained glass East Window tribute to the Americans who died at Dartmoor Prison in the church's tower.  Some 271 Americans are buried nearby, some in the church they helped build and others at the prison.

The church is not used anymore.  Its graveyard is overgrown.


Dartmoor Prison and St. Michael Church-- Part 1: French, Then American Prisoners

From the Changes of Longitude: Just Go Already Blog.

Two Americans, Larissa and Michael, were visiting Dartmoor Prison on southern England.

Dartmoor is the only English prison museum.  They were told Americans were held there.  They figured perhaps during World War II and were greatly shocked when they heard they were imprisoned there in the War of 1812.  (I had never heard of it until I came across it in an earlier blog entry.)

Dartmoor was built in 1806, in part to get prisoners off the horrific prison ships.  The first prisoners were French from the Napoleonic Wars.  Later, they were Americans from the War of 1812.  The Americans were still considered to be traitors because  of the American Revolution and as such, French prisoners received  far better treatment.

So, this is the connection of the church and prison.


St. Michael and All Angels Church in England-- Part 3: Stained Glass Window from USD1812

One of the church's windows is a beautiful stained glass one by Mayer of Munich which was installed in 1910 in memory of the American prisoners of war who helped build the church.  This window was partially funded by the donation of 250 pounds from the National Society Daughters of the War of 1812 as part of their ongoing work to commemorate those who died in the War of 1812.

The graves of some of those prisoners who died while in captivity are in the graveyard of the church.

The church was declared redundant in 1995 and vested by the Trust in 2001.  It is still consecrated and used for service occasionally.


Sunday, October 8, 2017

St. Michael and All Angels Church in England-- Part 2: Built By French and American Prisoners

Permission to construct a church at the site was given in 1812 by the Lord Commissioners of the Admiralty.  (You'd think the Anglican Church would be the one to ok the construction of the church.)  It was designed by architect Daniel Alexander and was initially built by French prisoners of the Napoleonic Wars and finished by Americans captured in the War of 1812.

It is the only church in England to be built by prisoners.

The Americans were held until 1816 and then the church closed.

I had to wonder at this point, was the church itself a prison or was there a nearby prison?


Friday, October 6, 2017

St. Michael and All Angels Church, England-- Part 1: Built By American Prisoners at Dartmoor Prison

In the last post, I mentioned the USD1812  (United States Daughters of the War of 1812) as supporting the preservation of St. Michael and All Angels Church in England.  Why would they be supporting an English church, I wondered?

Some more research was needed.

From Wikipedia

The Anglican Church of St. Michael (sometimes known as St. Michael and All Angels) in Princetown, Devon, England, was built between 1810 and 1814 and is on the National Heritage Trust for England and is built of granite.

And, here is the really interesting fact:  It was built by French and American prisoners.


Another War of 1812 Marker-- Part 2: Supports Old Fort Niagara

The ceremony will begin at 11 a.m. at the cemetery on Angling Road in Corfu, New York, on October 7.

The chapter of the USD1812 marks grave site, assists veteran functions and donates to and supports various museums including Old Fort Niagara in Youngstown.  They also support the preservation of St. Michael and All Angels Church in England which were built by War of 1812 prisoners.

Membership in the USD1812 is open to all with an ancestor who gave civil, military or naval service to the United States between 1784 and 1815.


Wednesday, October 4, 2017

Another War of 1812 Marker Dedicated-- Part 1: Hiram Sampson

From the September 27, 2017, Lockport (NY) Union-Sun & Journal "Daughters of 1812 ceremony open to the public."

The National Society United States Daughters of 1812, Niagara Frontier Chapter will dedicate a grave marker for Hiram Sampson on October 7 at Hillside Cemetery in Corfu.  The public is invited.

Chapter associate member Christine Holley is a direct descendant and will talk about him.


Tuesday, October 3, 2017

Fisher's Paradise in Lewes, Delaware: Revolutionary War, War of 1812 For Sale, $2.3 Million

From the September 27, 2017, Delaware Online  "Fisher's Paradise: Lewes home to Revolutionary spy."

It is on the canal in Lewes.  Major Henry Fisher, the local "eyes and ears" of the Continental Congress during the American Revolution lived here at 624 Pilottown Road from his boyhood to death in 1792 at age 57.

During the Revolution, Fisher "monitored and bedeviled British ships by removing navigation buoys and erecting underground wooden "spike strips" and darkening the Cape Henlopen Lighthouse.

The home was then sold to Colonel Samuel Boyer Davis, who lived there while he headed the defense of Lewes during the War of 1812.

And the 2,800 square foot home on an acre of land is on sale for $2.3 million.

Got $2.3 Million Lying Around?  --Brock-Perry

War of 1812 Grave Marked in Arkansas

From the September 26, 2017, Hot Springs (Ark.) Village Voice "Veteran of the War of 1812 grave marked."

The Baseline-Meridian Chapter United States Daughters of 1812 (USD1812) marked and dedicated another War of 1812 veteran's grave in Arkansas.  He was Jesse McClain and his grave is in Norris Cemetery in Yocana, Polk County.

The USD1812 was assisted by the DeSoto Trace, Sons of the American Revolution.

The USD1812 has identified approximately 750 War of 1812 veterans buried in Arkansas so far and less than 200 have been marked as veterans of the War of 1812.

More grave markings are planned for the remainder of this year.


Monday, October 2, 2017

Battle of the Thames-- Part 8: Consequences for Henry Proctor

**  Henry Proctor was relegated to minor commands for the rest of the war.

**  His career was essentially over.

**  In May 1814, he was charged with negligence and improper conduct,

**  His court martial was delayed because of operational reasons.

**  It was finally held in December and the judge chastised him for his conduct of the retreat and he was suspended from rank and pay for six months.

**  He never held a senior command again.


Sunday, October 1, 2017

Battle of the Thames-- Part 7: Consequences

**  Proved to the First Nations that Britain had a lack of resolution toward them.

**  The coalition of First Nations Indians collapsed without Tecumseh and Stiahta.

**  Peace agreements were signed between Harrison representing the U.S. government and various tribes in a move to divide and nullify Britain's chief ally in the war, the First Nations.

**  Most of the prisoners the Americans took were interned in an encampment at Sanduskey, Ohio, and suffered greatly.


Friday, September 29, 2017

Battle of the Thames-- Part 6: Casualties

A total of 246 British soldiers escaped, led by Henry proctor.  They retreated all the way to Lake Ontario and left behind 606 killed and wounded.  An estimated 33 Aboriginals were killed.

American losses were 7 killed and 22 wounded.  Harrison reported that  most of the American casualties came from the Aboriginals.

Instead of pursuing Proctor, Harrison returned to Detroit.


Thursday, September 28, 2017

Battle of the Thames-- Part 5: Collapse of the British Forces

Harrison concentrated his main force in the center with the mounted Kentucky riflemen  under Johnson riding hard and charging the woods.  The British regulars broke quickly under fire and many surrendered, with the rest, including Proctor, running off.

The Kentuckians dismounted and engaged the Indians in the woods.

Tecumseh was killed as was warrior chief Stiahta (also known as Stayeghtha and Roundhead of the Wyandots).  Without those two capable leaders,dead, the Aboriginal will to resist collapsed and they joined the British in retreating.


Wednesday, September 27, 2017

Battle of the Thames-- Part 4: Proctor Was Found Wanting of Leadership

Henry Proctor's retreat vegan 27 September 1813.

Major General William Henry Harrison, future U.S. president, led his American force cautiously following the retreating British and Indians and was soon joined by 500 mounted riflemen from Kentucky.  Proctor was "a slow and uninspired leader."

He did little to obstruct the American advance.  "Worse, Proctor's command of battle tactics were soon tested and found wanting."

"After a slow and disorderly withdrawal," Proctor turned and made a stand near Moraviantown with only a single 6-pdr. artillery piece with no ammunition.  The Aboriginals were in a swamp on the British right.  Tecumseh rode by the British soldiers, shaking the hand of each one to bolster their courage.


Tuesday, September 26, 2017

Battle of the Thames (Moraviantown)-- Part 3: Tecumseh's Distrust of the British

From the Canadian Encyclopedia.

Fought October 5, 1813.

This account was not too friendly toward British commander Henry Proctor.

After the Battle of Lake Erie in September, Henry Proctor saw the need to withdraw from the Detroit  area as he was cut off from supplies and reinforcements now that the Americans had control of Lake Erie.  Also, he was badly outnumbered.

Shawnee War Chief Tecumseh contested the decision to retreat.  His warriors were eager to fight.  Also, he feared that the British would betray the trust of the First Nations as they had done in the past.

In addition, he feared this would also put Aboriginal settlements west of Detroit in danger from American retaliation.


Monday, September 25, 2017

Canada's Fairfield on the Thames Nat. Hist. Site-- Part 2

The site is referred to as Old Fairfield and Hat Hill Cemetery.  It was destroyed by an invading American force after the Battle of the Thames, 5 October 1813.

The Village of Fairfield was founded in 1792 by fleeing Indians from the persecution they were getting in the United States after they refused to take sides during the American Revolution.  They had been converted to Christianity by German-speaking Moravian missionaries.

The largest of the group who settle in Fairfield, also called Moraviantown or Moravian Town. were the Delaware Indians.  Hat Hill cemetery was founded at the same time.

The village stood for 21 years until the British force and their Indian allies were defeated at the Battle of the Thames, also called the Battle of Moravian Town.

After the battle,  the Americans accused the pacifist residents of Fairfield  of hiding British officers.  A search didn't find any hidden British officers, but the village was plundered anyway and burnt to the ground after the residents were allowed to escape.

The village was subsequently rebuilt on the other side of the Thames River.


Canada's Fairfield on the Thames National Historic Site-- Part 1

From Canada's Historic Places.

I was looking for information from the Canadian side of the battle and found this site.

Fairfield on the Thames National Historic Site of Canada.  Recognized May 16, 1945.

Fairfield was established in 1792 on the north bank of the Thames River in what is today Ontario, Canada.  It is between present-day cities of Thamesville and Bothwell, Ontario.

There are no remains of the former village of Fairfield.

It was founded in 1792 for Aboriginal refugees and Moravian missionaries from Ohio.

The site has a large plot of land with a cemetery, the Fairfield Museum, a plaque and cairn erected by the Historical Sites and Monuments Board of Canada in 1948.

I had to look up cairn.  It is a heap of stones piled up as a memorial or landmark.

Learn Something Every Day.  --Brock-Perry

Friday, September 22, 2017

Battle of the Thames-- Part 14: Simon Kenton and William Whitley

**  Also with William Henry Harrison was Brigadier General Simon Kenton, renowned frontiersman and scout and a veteran of Wayne's Legion.  Like Harrison, he had fought Tecumseh in 1792 and 1793, but arrived on the battlefield too late to fight.

**  William Whitley was one of the most colorful Kentuckians who had built the first brick house in the state.  He enlisted as a private to fight in the War of 1812 at age 64.

**  Whitley died in the action, and like Tecumseh, had a premonition of his death.

**  Years later, his relatives claimed it was William Whitley who had actually killed Tecumseh.


The Battle of the Thames-- Part 13: Indian Strength and Overall Strength

**  The Indian contingent in Henry Proctor's force were commanded by Tecumseh and his deputy Oshawahnah, Chief of the Chippewa.

**  There were braves from the Shawnee, Ottawa, Delaware, Wyandot, Sac, Fox, Kickapoo, Winnebago, Potawatome and Creeks with him.  There were a total of 500 Indians in all.

**  Altogether, Proctor had between 950 and 1000 men.  The Americans outnumbered him by a three-to-one margin.


Thursday, September 21, 2017

The Battle of the Thames-- Part 12: Proctor's Force

**  Proctor had only a single brass 6-pdr. field piece cannon.

**  Lt. Col. Augustus Washburton commanded the British regulars and had been a captain in the elite 60th Foot, known as the Royal American Regiment prior to the Revolutionary War.

**  Proctor also had 20 Canadian Light Dragoons under Captain Thomas Colemen who served primarily as couriers during the campaign and battle.

**  There were a dozen men from the 10th Foot and some provincial dragoons.


Tuesday, September 19, 2017

The Battle of the Thames-- Part 11: A Family Affair for the Johnsons

Richard M. Johnson was the head of the 3rd Regiment Mounted Riflemen that he had organized.  His rank was colonel.  I have written a lot about him earlier.

Along with him in his regiment, he had his brother James Johnson.

And James Johnson had his two sons with him:  Edward, 17 and William, 15.


The Battle of the Thames-- Part 10: The Battle of Moraviantown and "Old King's Mountain"

**  Called the Battle of Moraviantown by the British and Canadians.

**  William Henry Harrison had with him in the campaign 120 regulars of the newly-formed 27th U.S. Infantry, 260 Indians and a corps of Kentucky volunteers consisting o foot soldiers and mounted infantry under the command of Major General Isaac Shelby.

**  Major General Isaac Shelby was 66-years-old and had the nickname "Old King's Mountain" because of his victory there during the American Revolution.

**  He led five brigades of buckskin-clad infantry men.

**  Also, technically under his command, but more often operating as an independent unit were the men of the 3rd Regiment Mounted Riflemen under the command of "War Hawk" Congressman Richard M. Johnson.


Battle of the Thames-- Part 9: Thamesville and Moraviantown

**  The site of the battle is near present-day Thamesville, Ontario.

**  During the battle, Henry Proctor fought with the Thames River on his left flank.

**  Moraviantown was established in 1729 by the Delaware Indians who had converted to Christianity by the Moravian missionaries.  By October 1813, it had 100 homes, a meeting house, school house and a common garden.


Monday, September 18, 2017

The Battle of the Thames-- Part 8: Tecumseh's Premonition

From History Net.

**  The night before the battle, Tecumseh told the other Indian leaders, "Brother warriors, we are about to enter into an engagement from which I shall  never return.  My body will remain on the field of battle.'

He then gave his sword Proctor had given him to another Indian and said, "When my son becomes a noted warrior, give him this."

He wore his buckskin outfit with ostrich feathers on his head and medal around his neck.


Friday, September 15, 2017

The Battle of the Thames-- Part 7: The Aftermath

The United States now had effective control of the Northwest Frontier for the rest of the war.

With Tecumseh's death, much of the Indian threat in the region also was eliminated.  William Henry Harrison was able to conclude truces with many of the tribes.

Harrison proved to be a skilled and popular leader, but he resigned the following summer after disagreements with Secretary of War John Armstrong.


Battle of the Thames-- Part 6: Who Killed Tecumseh?

The circumstances of Tecumseh's death are not known for sure.  Evidently, there were no people around the action that took his life.

Stories quickly circulated that Richard Johnson had killed him.  However, Johnson never personally claimed the credit, nor did he deny it.  But he definitely used it to his political advantage.

Credit for killing Tecumseh is also given to a Private William Whitley.  I'll see if I can find out some more information on him.


Thursday, September 14, 2017

Battle of the Thames-- Part 5: Losses

The Americans pressed on after the retreating Indians and burned the Indian village of Moraviantown despite the fact that the Christian Munsee inhabitants had taken no part in the battle.

Despite the victory, Harrison did not follow Proctor's force and returned to Detroit, citing the fact that his troops' enlistments were beginning to end.

The Americans lost between 10-27 killed and 15-54 wounded.  British losses were between 12-18 killed, 22-35 wounded and 566-579 captured.  Tecumseh's Indians had between 16-33 killed including himself and Wyandot Chief Roundhead.


Wednesday, September 13, 2017

And, All This Started With Ann Stokes, Black Nurse in the Civil War

I had never heard of Richard M. Johnson before, but he has a very interesting story as you have been reading over the last two weeks.

Ann Stokes was the reason I found him.  She was one of the first women ever to be in the U.S. Navy, noteworthy in itself.  But, she also was "contraband," a runaway slave.  So, not only was she one of the first women in the Navy, she was also one of the first black women.  She was also the first woman to receive a Navy pension for her service, not her husband's.

I wrote about her in several posts in my Running the Blockade Civil War Navy blog if you want to find out more.

She spent her latter years in the really small town of Belknap, Illinois, and died there.  I can't find out where she was buried.

Population of Belknap in 2000 was 133.  It is in Johnson County, pop. 2010 12,382.  But what got me was that it was named after Richard M. Johnson in 1812, who was then a Kentucky Congressman in the U.S. House of Representatives and commanded a Kentucky regiment in the War of 1812 and at the Battle of the Thames and claimed to have killed Indian leader Tecumseh in hand-to-hand combat.  He later became U.S. vice president.

Well, I just had to find out more about this interesting fellow.

And, So It Was.  --Brock-Perry

Battle of the Thames-- Part 4: British Regulars and Tecumseh's Indians Overwhelmed

James Johnson's force quickly overwhelmed the British regulars in less than ten minutes.  The Kentuckians and Paull's regulars drove the British off and captured Proctor's one cannon.  Proctor was among those who fled.

To the north, Richard Johnson attacked Tecumseh and led a forlorn hope of 20 men to draw Indian fire.  He ordered his men to dismount, but he remained in the saddle and became a perfect target.  He was wounded five times and Tecumseh was killed.  Shelby ordered his men to advance to Johnson's aid.

As Shelby came up, Indian resistance collapsed as word of Tecumseh's death spread among his warriors.  They fled into the woods, pursued closely by cavalry under Major David Thompson.

This was a far different result than what took place back in August 1812 at Detroit.

The Commander Leading the Retreat.  --Brock-Perry

Tuesday, September 12, 2017

The Battle of the Thames-- Part 3: Johnson Splits His Force

William Henry Harrison placed Richard Johnson's troops along the river and his regulars inland.  He initially intended to launch his main attack with his infantry, but changed his plans when he discovered men of the British 41st Foot deployed as skirmishers.  He had some infantry defend his left flank from attack by Tecumseh's Indians.

Richard Johnson was ordered to attack the British main line.  Johnson split his force into two battalions and planned to lead one against Tecumseh, while his younger brother, Lt. Col. James Johnson led the other against the British regulars

James Johnson's men charged down the River Road with Colonel George Paull's 27th U.S. Infantry in support.


The Battle of the Thames-- Part 2: Major General Isaac Shelby

Proctor's line was interrupted by a small swamp between the British regulars and Tecumseh's men.  Tecumseh lengthened his line into he swamp and pushed it forward so they could fire into the flank of the American force if it advanced on the regulars.

On October 5, Harrison approached with the U.S. 27th Infantry Regiment and a large corps of Kentucky volunteers led by Major General Isaac Shelby.  Shelby was a veteran of the American Revolution and had commanded troops at the Battle of King's Mountain in 1780 during that war.

There were also five brigades of infantry as well as Richard Johnson's 3rd Regiment of Mounted Riflemen.


Monday, September 11, 2017

In Observance of 9-11

In observance of 9-11, all seven of my working blogs will be dedicated to this sad moment in United States history.  (I still can't get my Second Civil War Again blog working.)

Sixteen years later, lest we forget.

Saturday, September 9, 2017

The Battle of the Thames-- Part 1: Chasing Proctor

With all the writing about Richard M. Johnson at this battle and other references, here is the Thought Co.  account of the battle.

After the Battle of Lake Erie, the British withdrew from Fort Malden, Upper Canada (near Detroit).  William Henry Harrison reoccupied Detroit and Sandwich.  He left garrisons at each and took his 3,700 men in pursuit of Proctor's British forces, pressing hard after him.

Proctor reached the Christian Native American settlement of Moraviantown on October 4, 1813, and turned to fight.  He had with him 1,300 men.  He placed his regulars, mostly of the 41st Regiment of Foot and one cannon on the left along the Thames River.


Friday, September 8, 2017

Richard M. Johnson-- Part 11: Honor For War Service

On April 4, 1818, by an Act of Congress, it was requested that the president of the United States present Richard Johnson with a sword in honor of his "daring and distinguished valor" at the Battle of the Thames.  This made him one of only 14 military officers presented a sword by Congress before the Civil War.

In August 1814, the British attacked, captured and burned down many buildings in Washington, D.C..  Congress formed a committee to investigate the circumstances and Richard Johnson became the chairman of it.  he delivered the committee's final report.

The Treaty of Ghent ended the war, even as Johnson was preparing to return to Kentucky to raise another military unit.

After the war, he turned his attention to issues like securing pensions for widows and orphans of the War of 1812 and funding internal improvements in the West.

I am only taking his story up to here, but it continues to be of interest after that.


Thursday, September 7, 2017

Richard M. Johnson-- Part 10: The Battle of the Thames Marked the End of the War in the Northwest

Richard Johnson fell unconscious after the duel with Tecumseh and was taken from the battlefield,  He had been wounded five times and twenty other bullet hit his horse and gear.

But, the War in the Northwest was over after that.

William Henry Harrison withdrew to Detroit instead of following Henry Proctor's British force.  Johnson recovered from his battle scars except for a crippled hand.

He was still suffering from his wounds when he returned to the U.S. House of Representatives in February 1814.


Wednesday, September 6, 2017

Richard M. Johnson-- Part 9: Who Killed Tecumseh?

The Indians eventually broke and fled into the swamp.  During this time Tecumseh was killed.  Some say that Richard Johnson killed him, but others believe that someone else did.

Richard Johnson, though, was credited with killing Tecumseh and used that reputation to further his political career.  Indian reports after the battle had Tecumseh being killed by a man on horseback and Richard Johnson was one of the few men mounted in that part of the battlefield (he had his men dismount and Shelby's men were infantry.

Johnson had been wounded four times and had been shot in the shoulder by an Indian chief advancing toward him to tomahawk him (Tecumseh?).

But, Johnson then fired his pistol, killing the Indian instantly.  After the battle Tecumseh's body was found near Johnson's hat and scabbard and had been shot from above (from horseback) and hit by a round of what Johnson usually loaded into his pistol: 2 buckshot and a pistol ball.


Richard M. Johnson-- Part 8: The Battle of the Thames

Johnson's force was the first to attack at the Battle of the Thames.  One battalion under Johnson's older brother, James Johnson, engaged the 800 British regulars.  At the same time, the rest of Richard Johnson's battalion attacked 1500 Indians led by Tecumseh.

James Johnson's attack was aided by a heavy tree cover which broke up the British volley.  Three-fourths of the British regulars were killed or captured.

The Indians put up a much harder fight.  Richard Johnson ordered a suicide squad attack by 20 men who were to ride forward, draw the Indian fire and then Johnson would attack with the rest of his force as they were reloading.  But the ground in front of the Indians was too swampy for a cavalry attack so he ordered his men to dismount and hold the Indians where they were until Shelby's infantry came up and attacked.


Monday, September 4, 2017

Richard M. Johnson-- Part 7: Leading Up to the Battle of the Thames

The British, under General Henry Proctor withdrew to the northeast from Fort Malden.  Tecumseh and his warriors covered the British retreat.  Gen. Harrison's American troops stayed after him, with Richard Johnson's soldiers keeping the Indians occupied.

Johnson had been called back from a raid on the Kaskaskia Indians.  Johnson's cavalry defeated Tecumseh's main force on September 29 and captured the British supply trains on October 3 and this became one of the factors that caused Proctor to stop his retreat and make a stand and fight at the Battle of the Thames on October 5, 1813.

One of Johnson's slaves, Daniel Chinn, accompanied him.  I can't find out much about him, but he might have been Johnson's common-law wife's brother.


Saturday, September 2, 2017

Richard M. Johnson-- Part 6: New Indian Fighting Tactics

He also developed a new tactical system for his troops.  Whenever a group of them encountered the enemy, they would dismount, take cover and hold the enemy in place.  All groups of his men not in contact with the enemy would then ride as quickly as possible to the sound of firing, dismount and surround the enemy.

Between May and September 1813, they raided throughout the Northwest, burning war supplies in Indian villages and surrounding Indian warriors and either killing and scattering them.

In September 1813, the Battle of Lake Erie took place and afterwards the Americans had control of Lake Erie.  The British Army was at Fort Malden (now Amherstville, Ontario) and out of supplies and cut off.


Richard M. Johnson-- Part 5: His Mounted Riflemen

Johnson returned to Congress in late fall 1812, after his unit was disbanded.  With his military experience fresh in his mind, he proposed a plan to defeat  the British Indian allies with mounted riflemen.  They could move quickly, carry their own supplies and live off the land and woods.

He submitted these plans to President Madison and Secretary of War John Armstrong.  They approved the plan and referred it to General William Henry Harrison.

He left Washington, D.C., just before Congress adjourned, went to Kentucky and raised 1,000 men for his mounted force.  These men and Johnson were officially under control of Kentucky Governor Isaac Shelby, but essentially operated independently.

Johnson put his force through much training, drill and discipline.


Friday, September 1, 2017

Richard M. Johnson-- Part 4: War Hawk and Colonel

The War of 1812 was a received a lot of support from the people of Kentucky who feared the British would stir up the Indians.  Richard Johnson became a War Hawk, along with Henry Clay.  These were men in Congress who were pushing for a war with Britain.

After the declaration of war in June 1812, Johnson returned to Kentucky to recruit volunteers.  He recruited 300 men and was elected their major.  Then his group merged with another one and he was elected colonel.

His command was supposed to join General Hull at Detroit, but Hull surrendered before they got there.  He then reported to General William Henry Harrison, the territorial Governor of Indiana, who ordered him to relieve Fort Wayne in the northeastern part of the state which was under attack by the Indians..  Johnson and his men reached the fort on September 18, 1812 and lifted the siege.

They then returned to Kentucky and disbanded, burning Potawatomi villages along the Elkhart River on their way.


Thursday, August 31, 2017

USS Niagara-- Part 6: More Reconstruction

The 1913 reconstruction, without the original plans, was not very accurate to the period.  The hull of the Niagara was launched in 1943, without its masts and then placed in a concrete cradle in 1951.

Dry rot was discovered throughout every part of the ship and it was determined that a complete reconstruction was needed.  Funds were given by the Pennsylvania Historical and Museum Commission to make the USS Niagara presentable for the sesquicentennial of the Battle of Lake Erie in 1963, including rigging and cannons.

It was listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1973.


Wednesday, August 30, 2017

Richard M. Johnson-- Part 3: Turning Political

Richard Johnson was born in Virginia, but his family moved to Kentucky when he was very young..  This still being frontier, he received no formal education until he was 15 and entered Transylvania University in Kentucky.  He was admitted to the bar in 1802, at age 22.

When his father died, he inherited an octoroon slave named Julia Chinn who became essentially his common-law wife.

In 1804, he entered politics and was elected to the Kentucky House of Representatives, even though he was just 23 (Kentucky law had minimum age at 24), but he was so popular, his age was overlooked.  In 1806, he was elected as a Democrat-Republican to the U,S, House of Representatives.  This, even though he had not yet attained the minimum age 25 (but he was that old when he took his seat).

Age Is Just a Numbers Thing for Richard.  --Brock-Perry

Tuesday, August 29, 2017

Richard M. Johnson-- Part 2: Killed Tecumseh

Richard M. Johnson was the only vice president ever elected by the U.S. Senate under Amendment 12.  He was also U.S. Representative and Senator from Kentucky.  His political career began and ended in the Kentucky House of Representatives.

Elected to the U.S. House of Representatives, he allied with fellow Kentuckian Henry Clay as a member of the War hawks, those who supported having a war with Great Britain.

Commissioned as a colonel in the Kentucky Militia, he commanded a regiment of mounted volunteers from 1812-1813.  He and his brother James served with General William Henry Harrison in the Battle of the Thames in Upper Canada and some reports had him killing the famed Shawnee Chief Tecumseh at this battle which he later used to his political advantage.


Monday, August 28, 2017

Richard M. Johnson-- Part 1: Kentucky Politician, Vice President and Killed Tecumseh

From Wikipedia.

I have been writing about Ann Bradford Stokes in my Running the Blockade Civil War Naval Blog.  She served on the hospital ship USS Red Rover during the Civil War, one of the first women to serve on a U.S. naval ship.  She also became the first woman to receive a pension based on her wartime service.  She was also a black woman and former slave.

She died in the town of Belknap, Illinois, in 1903, which is in Johnson County, named for this man.

I wrote about that today and am looking to see where her grave is and whether or not it is marked (but have been unsuccessful so far).

Richard Mintor Johnson was born October 17, 1788, apparently in Virginia, and died November 19, 1850.  He was a War of 1812 leader and the 9th vice president of the United States, serving under Martin Van Buren (1837-1841).

I'd never heard of Him.  --Brock-Perry

Friday, August 25, 2017

USS Niagara-- Part 5: Efforts at Restoration

The City of Erie transferred ownership of the vessel to the newly formed USS Niagara Foundation in 1929.  They were set up to restore it and make it the centerpiece of a museum.

However, the Great Depression forced the State of Pennsylvania to take over.  Two years later the state gave $50,000 for another restoration in 1931.  In 1938, the state stopped funding the ship.  It was transferred to the Pennsylvania Historical Commission and it became a WPA project.

The commission contracted Howard I. Chapelle to restore the Niagara and he used plans for period ships built by Noah Brown like the USS Saratoga.

Very little of the original USS Niagara remained by this time.  What hadn't rotted had been sold off as souvenirs.


Thursday, August 24, 2017

Washington, D.C., Invaded 203 Years Ago Today

In 1814, during the War of 1812, British forces invaded the United States' capital, Washington, D.C..

They set fire to the Capitol (which was still under construction) and the White House and other public buildings.


Wednesday, August 23, 2017

USS Niagara-- Part 4: Raised Again in 1913 For Centennial of Battle of Lake Erie

For the centennial of the Battle of Lake Erie in 1913, the Niagara was again raised in April 1913.  It was found to be in good enough condition to be rebuilt.  But that was made difficult because of a lack of the original plans.

The restored USS Niagara was launched 7 June with a new bowsprit, rigging and reproduction cannons.

From mid-July to mid-September of that year, the Niagara was towed to various Great Lakes ports, including Chicago, Milwaukee, Detroit, Buffalo and Cleveland.  The USS Wolverine, the Navy's first iron-hulled warship towed it.

Ownership of the ship was transferred to the City of Erie in 1917.

It was docked and allowed to deteriorate.


Tuesday, August 22, 2017

USS Niagara-- Part 3: Sunk, Raised and Sunk Again

The USS Niagara was built by Daniel Dobbins, who also built the USS Porcupine.  In September 1812, he traveled to Washington, D.C. to warn the government about the vulnerability of the Great Lakes.  On 15 September he was authorized to build 4 gunboats for the protection of Lake Erie

The construction of these four ships was largely overseen by Noah Brown, a noted naval architect.

After the war, the Queen Charlotte, Detroit and Lawrence were sunk for their preservation in Misery Bay by Presque Isle.  The Niagara was kept afloat to be used as a receiving ship.  It was sunk in 1820 when the naval station at Presque Isle closed.

Benjamin H. Brown of Rochester, New York, bought all four ships in 1825 and then he sold them to George Miles of Erie, Pennsylvania who raised them to use as merchant ships, but he found the Niagara and Lawrence had holds that were too small and they were in such bad shape that he allowed them to sink again..


Monday, August 21, 2017

USS Niagara-- Part 2: Mounted Twenty Guns

Ordered 31 December 1812.  Launched 4 June 1813.  Sunk 1820.  Raised March 6, 1913.  Restored 1913, 1931, 1943, 1963, 1988.  Homeport: Erie, Pennsylvania.

Class-type :  Niagara-class, snow-brig.

110 ' 8", beam 32', 9 feet draft.

1813:  492 tons burden, 155 crew

Armament:  Eighteen 32-pdr. carronades, two 12-pdr long guns.  (Long guns had more distance than carronades)


USS Niagara (1813)-- Part 1: Second Flagship of Perry at the Battle

From Wikipedia.

Snow brig, square rigged vessel, wooden hulled, with two masts.  A snow-brig has a snow or try-sail mast located behind the main mast.

It was the relief flagship for Oliver Hazard Perry at the Battle of Lake Erie after his USS Lawrence was too smashed to continue fighting.  It is certified for sail training by the U.S. Coast Guard and as such is the SSV Niagara.  It is usually docked behind the Erie Maritime Museum in Erie, Pennsylvania.  It often travels the Great Lakes during summers.

It was constructed 1812-1813 to protect  the vulnerable American shore of Lake Erie and played a pivotal role in the Battle of Lake Erie.


Saturday, August 19, 2017

U.S. Navy Ships at the Battle of Lake Erie-- Part 2: Long Guns and Carronades

Name--   classification---  armament--   fate

Long guns are regular cannons and good for long range firing.

CALEDONIA--  brig--   2 long guns, 1 carronade--  1830 either sank or was dismantled

NIAGARA--  brig--  2 long guns, 18 carronade--  present day used as a sailing school.  (Original ship?)

SOMERS--   schooner--   1 long gun, 1 carronade--   unknown

PORCUPINE--   schooner--  1 long gun--    1873 beached

TIGRESS--   schooner--  1 long gun--  1815 sunk

TRIPPE--  sloop--   1 long gun--  1813 burnt by British

Totals:  9 ships--  15 long guns, 39 carronades


Thursday, August 17, 2017

U.S. Navy Ships At the Battle of Lake Erie, September 10, 1813

From the National Park Service.

Sunce I have been writing about the USS Porcupine, these were the U.S. ships at the battle:

Name--  classification--  armament--  fate

SCORPION---  schooner---  1 long gun, 1 carronade---  Broken up 1831

ARIEL---  schooner---  4 long guns---  unknown

LAWRENCE---  brig--  2 long guns, 18 carronades--=  1876 burnt in a fire

More to Come.  --Brock-Perry

USS Porcupine-- Part 4: Sank and Raised

The Porcupine/Caroline made one last sail into Spring Lake, Michigan, where it was abandoned in 1843.  Soon after that it sank at the foot of 4th Street near the Johnston Brothers Boiler Works.

It was raised in 1901 by Charles G. Butthouse of Ferrysburg.  There is a photo accompanying the article captioned "Remains of 'Porcupine' In the Yard of Mr. Bolthouse, Ferrysburg, Mich."  So, it appears there has been a misprint on his name.

Pieces of the Porcupine were sent to Detroit and Put-In-Bay for the centennial of the Battle of Lake Erie.  Other pieces ended up in museums in Grand Rapids, Grand Haven and Lansing, Michigan.


Wednesday, August 16, 2017

USS Porcupine-- Part 3: U.S. Coastal Survey and Revenue Cutter Service

From the Michigan Shipwreck Research Association.

In 1816, the Porcupine was commissioned as a survey vessel in the newly formed United States Coastal Survey Office, and worked the border between the United States and Canada under the command of War of 1812 hero Stephen Champlin (he commanded the USS Scorpion at the Battle of Lake Erie)..  In 1819, it entered the United States Revenue Cutter Service.

In 1825 it was sold by the government and five years later renamed the Caroline.  It had several owners over the rest of its career, including Ferry & Sons of Grand Haven, Michigan, and was used extensively in the lumber trade until she became unseaworthy.


Tuesday, August 15, 2017

USS Porcupine-- Part 2: More Service Afterwards

The USS Porcupine was anchored at the head of the Niagara River 12 August 1814, along with the USS Ohio and USS Somers, when they were attacked by 6 or 8 boats manned with English seamen and Canadian militia.  The other two were captured, but the Porcupine escaped.

It remained in Lake Erie providing transportation and support William Henry Harrison's army at the battle to recover Detroit and the Battle of the Thames.  It was still commanded by George Senat when it transported supplies to Harrison's Army to the north of the Thames and went up the Thames to provide artillery and logistics support.

It was laid up in Erie, Pennsylvania, until 1819, when it was refitted and turned over to the Collector of Revenue at Detroit 2 June.

Returned to the Navy 2 August 1821, it remained inactive until sold 8 August 1825.  Afterwards it served as a cargo vessel on the Great Lakes until it was determined to be unseaworthy and beached on the sand at Spring Lake near Grand Haven, Michigan.


Monday, August 14, 2017

USS Porcupine-- Part 1: At the Battle of Lake Erie

From Wikipedia.

60 tons, 60 feet length, 25 crew.  Mounted one 32-pdr and later two 12-pdrs.

Launched May 1813 and commissioned spring 1813.  Allowed to sink in Spring Lake at Ferrysburg, Michigan, in 1873.

It was a gunboat schooner built by the famed Adam and Noah Brown shipbuilders at Presque Isle, Pa (by Erie, Pa.)  an was a part of Oliver Hazard Perry's fleet at the Battle of Lake Erie.

At the battle, Acting master George Senat was in command of it on 10 September 1813.

After the battle, the Porcupine was used as a hospital ship for wounded and captured British sailors.