Thursday, November 28, 2013

Tecumseh - Leader of the Shawnee 1768 - 1813


"When you rise in the morning, give thanks for the light for your life, for your strength. Give thanks for your food and for the joy of lving. If you see no reason to give thanks, the fault lies in yourself." Tecumseh










    Tecumseh (March 1768 – October 5, 1813) was a Native American leader of the Shawnee and a large tribal confederacy (known as Tecumseh's Confederacy) which opposed the United States during Tecumseh's War and the War of 1812. Tecumseh has become an iconic folk hero in American, Aboriginal and Canadian history.

   Tecumseh grew up in the Ohio Country during the American Revolutionary War and the Northwest Indian War, where he was constantly exposed to warfare. With Americans continuing to encroach on Indian territory after the British ceded the Ohio Valley to the new United States in 1783, the Shawnee moved farther northwest. In 1808, they settled Prophetstown in present-day Indiana. With a vision of establishing an independent Native American nation east of the Mississippi under British protection, Tecumseh worked to recruit additional tribes to the confederacy from the southern United States.

   During the War of 1812, Tecumseh's confederacy allied with the British in The Canadas, and helped in the capture of Fort Detroit. American forces killed Tecumseh in the Battle of the Thames, in October 1813.

   With his death, his confederation disintegrated. Some tribes simply stopped fighting. Accordingly, the British deserted their Indian allies at the peace conference that ended the War of 1812. As a result, the dream of an independent Indian state in the Midwest vanished, and American settlers took possession of all the territory south of the Great Lakes, driving the Indians west or into reservations.