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It was just 209 years ago today, October 5, 1813, when an American force comprised of trained soldiers and militia led by Major General William Henry Harrison attacked and defeated a combined force of British soldiers and their Indian allies of the Tecumseh Confederacy near Chatham-Kent, Ontario. During our “Wars for Independence” the Revolution and the War of 1812, most battles that are discussed deal with the large pageantry of battlefields where the numbers were massive. However, the small frontier battles against the British and their Indian allies were fierce, and played major roles, despite the numbers involved.
So too was the Battle of Thames, and though only around 5,000 combatants fought this day, the battle was no less important, for not only were the British soundly defeated, but Tecumseh, the great Indian Chief, and scourge of the American Frontier, was killed, effectively ending Indian resistance during the war, and along with the death of War Chief Roundhead, the American Frontier would, for the most part, remain calm until after the end of the war. Major General William Henry Harrison will ride this victory and many others to become our 9th President, using the slogan “Tippecanoe and Tyler too” referring to the Battle of Tippecanoe in 1811, another American victory over the Tecumseh Confederacy.
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