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Conflict between Native Americans and white settlers


Oliver Hazard Perry
Oliver Hazard Perry

Several years after Ohio became a state, a new conflict broke out between Native Americans and white settlers. The Shawnee chief Tecumseh, forced out of Ohio in 1808, began to form an extensive alliance of native peoples to resist further white settlement and regain former native lands. He and his brother Tenskwatawa, a religious visionary known as The Prophet, received help from the British, but their forces were defeated in 1811 in the Battle of Tippecanoe, in Indiana. However, many Ohio residents believed that the threat of conflict with the Native Americans would not be permanently eliminated until the British were driven out of Canada. They enthusiastically supported the War of 1812 (1812-1815), which the United States declared against Britain over its aggression against American shipping.

Ohio became the staging area for the northern theater of the war. Supply routes crossed the state, and blockhouses and stockades were hastily built in northern Ohio to defend the area that bordered on British-held Canada. These included Fort Meigs, near Perrysburg, and forts Stephenson and Seneca, along the Sandusky River. Both Fort Meigs and Fort Stephenson withstood British attacks in 1813. American forces under Harrison and U.S. naval leader Oliver Hazard Perry later defeated the British in a series of battles in the border area and on Lake Erie. The Americans under Harrison won the Battle of the Thames, in Canada, in October 1813, which ended the fighting in the northern border area and broke the resistance of the Native Americans to further settlement. Tecumseh, who had fought on the British side, was killed in the battle.

The Native Americans in Ohio ceded their last substantial lands in the state a few years after the war, with many Shawnee and Delaware moving farther west or to Canada. Harrison, making use of his war record, would later become the first president of the United States elected from Ohio, but he died in 1841 after only one month in office. "Ohio" © Emmanuel BUCHOT, Encarta, Wikipedia

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