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Full text of "Life of General John Tipton and early Indiana history"

'- oc MUL.EN CO., |f4D. 



Mi 



mrint 



ALLEN COUNTY PUBLIC LIBRARY 



3 1833 02498 2594 

Gc 977.2 T49p 
Pershing, M- W. 1849- 
Life of General John Tipton 
and early Indiana history 



\ 



LIFE OF 

GENERAL JOHN TIPTON 

AND 

EARLY INDIANA HISTORY 

BY 
M. W. PERSHING 



s^ 



PUBLISHED BY 

THE TIPTON LITERARY AND SUFFRAGE CLUB 
TIPTON, INDIANA 

PRICE THIRTY-FIVE CENTS PER COPY. 

Aflen County Public Lii^fiQ^ 

900 Webster Stre^ 

PO Box 2270 

R)rt Wayne, IN 46801-2270 



^Ot^^^ 




GENERAL JOHN TIPTON 



i INTRODUCTION. 



t* 

O 

Q During tlie summer of 1905, the writer of this book was in the 
office of Dr. H. G. Read, wlien tlie latter asl^ed the question, "What 
great things did General Tipton do that our County and City and other 
Counties and Cities are named for him, and so little said of him in 
history?" In the conversation that followed, bits of information was 
gleaned until the subject became of considerable interest. At that 
time the Doctor was the President of the Tipton Literary and 
Suffrage Club, and he suggested that a paper on the life .of 
General John Tipton be prepared and read before the club. Acting 
upon this suggestion, the program committee set apart a ''Tipton 
"Night" and Mrs. Sam Matthews was selected to prepare and read a 
paper on the subject. After careful re-search and much labor, she pre- 
pared and read a most valuable and interesting paper. It aroused con- 
siderable discussion and much information was derived. The mem- 
bers of the club became so enthused that they conceived the idea of rais- 
ing a fund for the purpose of erecting a monument, or tablet or a paint- 
ing to the memory of the. man for whom the County and City were 
named. Committees were appointed to adopt a plan for a monument. 
Those who took the initiative and gave life to the movement were Dr. 
and Mrs. H. G. Read, Dan and Mrs. Waugh, George H. and Mrs. GilTord. 
Mrs. George Teter, Mrs. Sam Matthews, Mrs. W. L. Berrvman, ]\frs. W. 
H. Ogan, Mrs. E. H.Shirk, Mrs. Dr. Dickey, Mrs. William Standerford, 
M. W. Pershing and others whose names cannot just now be recalled. 
For some time the subject was more or less discussed, but no definite 



plans were matured until during the last summer, when Prof. C. F. 
Patterson, Superintendent of the City Schools and L. D. Summers, 
Count}'- Superintendent of Schools, heard of the movement and they 
suggested that as the project was of historic importance, that it be 
brought before the public schools and that it be made a County affair. 
This was thought advisable and it was made a special feature before the 
County Teachers' Institute. An address was made before the Teachers' 
Institute, giving a brief account of the life and achievements of General 
Tipton, from which the teachers throughout the County became deeply 
interested and it was decided that we have a "Tipton Day" on October 
25, when a program was rendered in honor of the great General for 
whom our County was named. It was also decided that a history should 
be written especially devoted to the life of the General and the under- 
signed was selected to write this volume. 

The history and biography of General Ti]^ton has been fully 
written for the first time in this volume, very much of it never having 
been in print before. To secure this material difficult re-search was 
made, and considerable correspondence with many people, who had 
some relic about their homes as a reminder of the deeds of General 
Tipton. Old 1 ooks, old pamphlets, old magazines, old newspapers, and 
old letters were hunted up and read with little bits of information 
gathered here and there, we are enabled to ]iroduce a volume pertain- 
ing to Indiana history and the life of a man whom historians have paid 
little attention. For a great deal of this material the writer is indebted 
to Lieutenant-Governor Th. Hugh ]\li11er and George Price, of Colum- 
bus, B. F. Lawrence, managing editor of the Indianapolis Star. Hon. 
Dan. McDonald, of Plymouth, A. 0. Reser and Thomas E. Burt, of La- 
Fayette, the latter loaning us several of the illustrations appearing in 
this edition. We are under special obligations to Reed Beard, of 
Lafayette, author of the "Battle of Tippecanoe," for the use of maps 
and charts, also to M. W. Phillips, of LaFayette for valuable informa- 
tion heretofore unpublished together with a letter written by Judge 
Isaac Naylor, of (^rawfordsville, who was in the battle of Tippecanoe 
and was one of the first to arrive at Pigeon Roost after the massacre. 
This letter was found quite recently among some old papers in the 
])ossession of the Judge's daughter. 

The object in tlie publication of this work is that valuable historic 
events in the State of Indiana may be preserved and that deeds per- 
formed and' sacrifices made by Gen. John Tipton may become more gen- 



erally known. The net proceeds of the sale of this book is to be entirely 
devoted to .creating a fund toward the erection of a monument to 
the memory of the man who was a citizen, a statesman, an Indian fighter 
and a history maker. The writer takes great pleasure in dedicating 
this volume to the Public Schools and the Citizens of Tipton County 
and hopes that it may encourage a greater interest in the earlier history 
of the State and create a patriotic sentiment for those who did so much 
for American civilization. 



/prrr^_e^Jc^^ 




Life of General John Tipton. 



The Tipton family is of Irish lineage. Joshua Tipton, the father 
of the subject of this sketch was horn in Maryland. In early manhood 
he removed to Sevier County, East Tennessee, then known as the terri- 
tory of Franklin, and there he was married to Jeanette Shields. Joshua 
Tipton was an Indian fighter and soon became a leader in public affairs 
of Tennessee. 

There are stirring stories of a fued between the Tipton family and 
the Sevier's (for whom the County was named.) It was waged with 
characteristic Southern heat and the bitter vindictiveness which has 
made each a tragic element in the history of so many communities in 
the young South. This fued ended on April 16, 1798, in the death of 
Joshua Tipton, apparently at the hands of a marauding band of 
Cherokee Indians. But it is unwritten history that the assassination 
was arrnna:ed and timed bv the Seviers. It was under such conditions 
and such influences that John Tipton was born, August 14, 1786. He 
was seven years of age at the time of his father's death. When he was 
twenty-one years of age he moved with his mother and family to Indi- 
ana, settling near Bringley's Ferry, in Harrison County. Here he was 
the chief suiiport of the family, and by repairina: guns and working as 
a farm hand, he was enabled to buy a farm of fifty acres. His mother 
died at Seymour in 1827. 

John Tipton was not in the new territory long before his nualities 
as a leader became recoa:nized. The constant fear of hostile Indians, 
horse thieves, counterfeiters and river desperadoes kept the settlers on 



10 



LIFE OF GENERAI. JOHN TIPTON. 




,^/^/^^2^^^^- 



LIFE OF GENERAI- JOHN TIPTON. 



the alert and Tipton was fonncl to be a man that could be relied upon as 
an indefatigable enemy to Indians and evil doers. 

In June, 1809, the Sheriff of Harrison County formed a company of 
mounted riflemen for active service in Indian warfares. Of this com- 
pany, ''The Yellow Jackets," so called from the peculiar color of their 
uniforms, John Tipton became a member. On September 12, 1811, the 
company was marching on general orders of Gov, Harrison to rendez- 
vous at Vincennes. This campaign was made against the hostile 
Indians on the Wabash Kiver and contributes an important chapter of 
Ihe war of 1812. This expedition, while apparently not imix)rtant in 
Hself, lies at the foundation of a mighty fact in our development, for 
the ''Battle of Tippecanoe" led the English to see that their Indian 
allies were not to be relied upon, and they therefore withdrew from the 
alliance and thus made it possible for the ITnited States to control the 
four great States of the Middle West. 

'.During this expedition John Tii^ton kept a daily journal, the only 
one kept by any one during that long march. The following are a few 
extracts from this diary, the original of which is now on file with the 
Historical Society at Indianapolis. It will be observed that Tipton was 
an uneducated man, though there is method and system in all his 
records: 

"thirsday, 12, of September. 1811, when 
the company departed from Corydon to Sun- 
day, 24, November, when the stragling remnant 
of the company returned." 

"An encompt of the march and Encamp- 
ment of the riflemen of harrison county, com- 
manded by Capt. S]uer Spencer, consisted of 47 
men besides officers in Company with E. m. 
heath with 22 men." 
The journal gives particulars of each day and the doings of the 
writer. It appears from the records that he was always ready for 
everything that came up. It is written with evident modesty, but his 
ability and adaptability assert themselves continuall}^ Standing post, 
scouting, hunting lost horses, repairing guns of his company, acting as 
a spy, hunting game for his mess and making himself generally useful, 
thus he was in close touch with his comrades. Here are a few more ex- 
tracts that are very interesting: 

"thirsday 12 of September 1811 Left Corry- 



12 liTFE OF GENERAL JOHN TIPTON. 

don at 3 oclock marched six miles to governor 
harrisons mill and Eneampt had onr horses in 
posture. ' ' 

' ' 12. marched 34 miles and on the way was 
joined by Capt. Berry with 20 men and Eneampt 
at a good Spring." 

"14. marched 3 miles and Eneampt at the 
half moon Spring was joined hy Capt. baggs 
with a troop of horses and in the Evening hy 
Col hartholom.ew with 120 melitia from Clark 
County." 

It must he remembered that John Tipton never went to schaol and 
liis ability to write at all was through his own efforts and his desire to 
become a useful man. From his diary we gather a report of tlie move- 
ments of the army. On Wednesday, November 18, 1811 , the army 
reached Vincennes, where the troops were mustered, and general orders 
issued by Gov. Harrison on September 22, and Major J. H. Daviess 
was appointed in command of all the dragoons. Tipton was appointed 
Ensign of the company to which he belonged and it was ordered as a 
detached corps of mounted volunteers. 

The army under the command of Gov. Harrison moved from 
Vincennes on September 26, and on October 3, arrived at Terre Haute. 
The events of the next few weeks are here given in Tipton's own 
language: 

"thirsday 3d. marched at 9 four of our 
horses missing the men left to hunt them m_arch- 
ed one mile Came to tare-hott an oald Indian 
village on east side of wabash on high land near 
a Large Prarie Peach and aple trees growing." 

In this vicinity the Indians had been very trouble^^-o-e, killing 
many settlers, stealing horses and cattle and driving the whites into 
Vincennes. Gov. Harrison had promised the fugitives whom he met at 
Vincennes that he would make a decisive ca^-.paign against the Indians. 
After a few days march from Terre Haute a halt was made and the army 
rngaged in the building of a fort," which was named Fort Harrison and 
wa^s completed October 28. After the fort was completed Harrison sent 
some Helawarc (liiefs to tlie Pro])hei on a mission of peace, offering 



lilFE OF GENERAL JOHN TIPTON. 



1.S 




14 TjIFE of GKNKRAI. .IOHN TIPTON. 

terms of surrender, but the Prophet treated the proi>osition with scorn. 
Upon receiving this refusal the army marched toward Prophet's Town. 
The army was composed of about nine hundred and ten, embracing 
about two hundred and fifty regular troops, sixty volunteers from Ken- 
tucky and about six hundred Indiana volunteers. On October 81 tlie 
army passed Eacoon Creek and crossed the Wabash River at the present 
site of Montazuma, in Park Countv, of which Tipton wrote in his 
journal : 

''thirsday 31st we took a north cours up 
the east of valley and then crosst to the west 
with orders to kill all the Indians. We saw 
fine news." 

His language here indicates his hatred for the Indian. From the 
fact that the Indians had killed his father the young man was ready to 
obey any order to kill all Indians that came within his sight. He was 
ever on the alert and when Indian signs were discovered, he was always 
on the outlook for them. It is said that Tipton never saw a good Indian 
except a dead Indian. All Indians were bad Indians and that it was his 
duty to kill them whenever an opportunity presented itself. He was a 
sure shot and when an Indian came in sight a flint-lock rifle went to his 
!<houlder, there was a crack of a gun and an Indian fell to the ground. 
So deadly was his aim that when the Red Man heard that he was in the 
vicinity they kept well under cover and avoided meeting him. 

As the army approached the historic ground on which the battle of 
Tippecanoe was fought his journal becomes m.ore interesting, and as 
this is the only authentic account of the march, r..akes it of more than 
ordinary value. The following is taken from his journal for the next 
several days: 

''Sunday the ord (November, 1811) a 
cloudy day. we moved eary. our Company on 
the Right wing today. Crosst the Big Vermil- 
lion, through a Prarie six miles, 3 miles through 
timber, then through a wet Prairie with groves 
of timber in it. After IS miles Cam])ed in Rich 
grove of timber in tlie Prairie, (^apt. S]^encer 
very sick today, at 10 oclock tonight the aid 
Came to (^ani]) and orec a sulialtern and the men 
to Parade at the GoN'crnor's tent, at 4 in the 



LIFE OF GENERAL JOHN TIPTON. 



15 




PLAN OF TIPPECANOE CAMP, EVENING OF NOVEMBER 6 



16 LIFE OF GENERAI. JOHN TIPTON. 



morning I was ordered out. my Company maid 
up. a gun fired while I am writing at eleven 
ocloek. ' ' 

"Monday the 4th. I went out with my 
scout. Joined hy Capt. Prince, went 18 miles 
through a Prairie. Came to Pine Creek, a fine 
Large Creek, then turned back, the Day being 
could, Cloudy and Windy. Began to rain at 11 
ocloek. we stoped to make fire. But the armey 
Came and we had to leve it. We crosst Pine 
Creek and Cam]id. two gun fired at S. it Con- 
tinewd Eaing at intervales. T had one quart of 
whisky yesterday and one today of the Con- 
tractor." 

"tuesday the 5. a Cloudy day. we mooved 
Earley. a Lieutenant and 5 men sent to scout. 
Came to the armey. no Sine Reed We went 6 
miles through timber then Prairie, with groves 
of timber and a number of small lakes in it. an 
alarm maid. T was Rent out with 17 men to 
Scout. Seed nothino'. a Deer and a. wolf Killed 
in the line. Cairpd on a Small Branch after 18 
miles, the guns fired last night wounded a 
horse." 

"ATednesday the fi. A vary Cold day, we 
moved Earley. Scout Sent out. they came 
back, had t-eed indijm Sine, we marched as 
usuel till 12. Our Spies Caught four horses and 
Seed son^e indinns. found we ware near the 
Celebrated Prophet's town. Stopt in a Prairie. 
the foot throwd all their napsacks in the 
waggons, we found in order for A Battle. 
marched - uiiles. then formd the line of Bat- 
tle, we marched in five lines on the extreme 
Pight. Went into a Corn Field, then up to the 
above town and Surrounded it. the met us. 
Pled for Peace, the said the would gi\e us 
Satisfnc in the 'morning, all the time we ware 
tlicic the kept licllowiug. this town is on the 



LIFE OF GENERAL . .TOHN TIPTON. 17 

west side of Wabash — miles above vincinnes, oti 
the second Bank, neat built, about 2 hundred 
yards from the river, this is the main town, 
but it is Scattering a mile long, all the way a 
fine Corn field, after the above moovement we 
moovd one mild farther up. Campd in tim(ber) 
between a Creek and a Prairie af (ter) Crossing 
a fine Creek and marching 11 miles." 

''thirsday the 7. agreeable to their 
Promise Last night we were answered by the 
fireing of guns and the Shawines Braking into 
our tents, a Blood Combat Took Plaice Precise- 
ly 15 minutes Before five in the morning, which 
Lasted 2 hours and 20 minutes, of a Continewel 
fireing whil maney time mixed among the 
indians So that we Could not tell them, indians 
and our men apart, they kept up a fireing on 
three sides of us and took our tent from the 
guard fire. Our men fought brave and by the 
timely help of Capt Cook with a Company of in- 
fantry we maid a Charge and Drove them out 
of our timber across the Prairie, our Losst and 
Ki11d and wounded was 179, and their graiter 
than ours. among the Dead was our Capt 
Spier Spencer and firs Lieut memahon and Capt 
Berrey that had Been attachd to our Company, 
and 5 more Kild Dead and 15 wounded, nffpr 
the indians arave arround we Burried our Dead, 
among the Kentucians was Killd may J. Owins 
and may J. Davies badlv wounded and a num- 
ber of others, in all Killd and wounded was 179 
but no Company Suffered like ours, we then 
held an Election for Officers. T was Elected 
Capt. Sam! flauaa'an first Lieut and Jacob Zenor 
Second Liet. and Philip Bell Ensign, we then 
built Breast work, our men in much confusion 
in our rear. 

flower been too small and all our hccvs lost. 
Last nidit onlev a half Pations of whiskv and 



18 



lilFE OF GENERAI^ JOHN TIPTON. 



INDIANA IN 1611 



Dearbor, 




Scale of A/'V^-s 



lilFK OF GENERATv JOHN TTPTON. 19 

no corn for our horses, my horse Killd. T got 
memalions to ride. 37 of them had been Kill(^ 
wonnded and Lost. I had one quart of whis(ky) 
last night." 

"friday the 8th. a Cloudy day and Last 
night was also wet and cold, we Lay all night 
at our Breast work without fire, in the morn- 
ing Spies Sent out found the indians had left 
their town, the horsemen was all sent to burn 
their town, to wet went ann found grait deal of 
Corn, and some Dead indians in 'the houses. 
Tvoaded 6 waggons with Corn, and Burnt what 
Estimated at 2 thousand Bushels. 9 of our men 
> Died last night." 
The Indians not returning after the battle, the army moved toward 
Vincennes. Tipton continued to keep his diary, but there was nothing 
of an unusual character occurred upon the return trip. After the dis- 
charge of the volunteer soldiers at Vincennes, the following entry is 
U'ade in the journal: 

''Sunday Nov 24th, a Cloudy and Eainy 
morning, we mooved Early. Come to Corrydon 
at half past 10. took Breakfast, mooved up to 
Coonrods, found my Lieut and sick man. Staid 
2 hours had my horses fed, got some whisky, 
met one of my neighbors, mooved again and at 
10 oclock got safe Home after a Campain of 74 
days. (signed) John Tipton." 

Eollowing this is a foot note which completes the joi^i^nal for this 
f^ampaiaii and closes the incidents of the war with the Indians and the 
})attle of Tippecanoe: ''this Day Book Kept During the Campain 

in the Year 1811. wherein his Ex-Cellency Gov- 
ernor Plarrison was Commander in Chief and 
Col. J. B. Boyd of the 4th United States Eeige- 
ment was Second in Cominand. Evervthing 
herein stated the Subscriber holds his self 
Ti<»adv to make anpear to Bee Fact from the 
best information Could Bee as it was duly Ke]it 
l^v his self." 
Oliver H. Smith in his book, "Earlv Trials and Sketches." in writ- 



20 I.IFE OF GENEKAT. JOHN TIPTON. 

"Rg- of tJie battle of Ti])pe('aiu)e and the achievements of John Tipton, 
has the fohowing to say: 

"A dark night came on. It was probable that the Prouhel won id 
strike that night, if at all, the men lay on their arms, the officers at their 
j-espective command. 'Hark!' the sound of rifles. The .-entinels were 
either shot or driven in, the attack was made ovej" the east and west 
banks of the high lands, bordering 'the prairies. Tiie moment the alarm 
was given, every soldier was on his feet and the mounted officers in 
tlieir saddles. Gen. Harrison ran to the post where he left his gray 
mare. Finding Major Owens bay horse he liiounted, leaving the gray 
for the Major if he could find her. The Oenerai dashed down to where 
he heard the firing, rode up to Capt. Spencer's position at tlie point of 
;• high ground around which the prairl^'s mer, where the enejny had 
made the first attack- — deadly in effect. There stood the bra^e Ensign, 
John Tipton, and a few of the surviving men of tbo co)n]iany. In a loud 
voice Gen. Harrison called out: 

^''AVhere is the Captain of this company!' 

"To which John Tipton answered, 'Dead, Sir.'' 

'"Where is the First Lieutenant?' 
•'"He is dead, Sir.' 

'"Where is the Second Lieutenant:" 

'"He is dead.' 

' ' ' Where is the Ensign ? ' 

'"I am here," answered Tipton. 

"'Stand fast, my brave fellow, stand fast, and 1 will get relief for 
you in a few minutes.'" 

General Harrison always s]ioke of Ensign Tipton as the coolest and 
lu-avest officer he had in his connnand. Standing there with sword 
drawn, facing tlie oncoming Indians, looking at death and seeing his 
comrades falling all about him, he held the position until relief came 
.md the Indians were driven back. The day was saved. The great 
Tecumseh federation had failed and the great Prophet's heart was 
broken. Ft was Ti]'>ton that stood between savagery and civilization, 
ft was he that made it possible that the ]>ower of the Indian was 
broken and the great states of Indiana, Illinois, Michigaii and Wiscon- 
sin freed of hostile Indians and brought under the domination of Anglo- 
Saxon government. The British government bowed to the inevitable and 
withdrew its sui)p()i-t from the Indians. The Pro])het Tecumseh went 
{(• Detroit wlicrc iic scx'ci'ed liis relations with the P>ritish government 



I.IFK OK (JKXKKAL .lOIlN TIPTOX. 



n.^Sft. 




■<xSi^ 



INDIAN WAR DANCE. 

[Fi'oin Fam us I'rontiersmcii. Pioucfis and Sc'oiits ; imhlislKvl by W. H. 

I.iirrisnn, .It-., I'lililisniii;^ ('.>.. Chicaico.] 



LIFE OF GENERAL JOHN TIPTON. 



and went to Canada, wliere he lived the life of an exile, hated and 
despised by both whites and reds, and died a mi serai)! e death alone and 
unattended. 

In 1839 the bones of the soldiers that fell in the battle of Tippe- 
canoe, which had been disinterred by the Indians for revenge and rob- 
bery, were gathered together and buried again. The battle grounds 
was purchased by Gen. Tipton, the deed being recorded at Grawfords- 
ville. After holding it a few years he donated it to the State of Indiana. 

The Legislature had ]iassed an act commanding the Grovernor to 
negotiate with Gen. Tipton for the purchase of the battle ground land, 
consisting of about thirteen acres. On another page we reproduce an 
autograph letter written by Gov. Noble to Gen. Tipton asking him to 
sell the land to the state and on another page appears Tipton's reply 
in his own hand writing, offering to donate the ground. The convey- 
ance of the gift is recorded in the Recorder's office at L-' Fayette. The 
records show that the transfer was made on November 7, 1836, the 
twenty-fifth anniversary of the famous battle. The record was lost and 
for several years there was a dispute over the title. Alva O. Reser, of 
L.aFayette, became interested in the history of the battle and while 
preparing an address to be delivered before the Battle Ground Chau- 
tauqua he went to Logansport and by the assistance of a grand-daughter 
of Gen. Tipton, found the original letters neatly tied in a bundle and 
kept in an old trunk owned by her grand-father. Among these papers 
were documents that quieted the title to tlie battle p,Tounds. On 
February 4, 1837, a year after the doration of the battle grounds, a 
resolution was passed by the Legislature instructing the Governor to 
offer a suitable i^remium for a design for a monument to be erected on 
the battlefield, i)ledging the faith of the state to complete the same. 
This promise, iiledged seventy years ago, is still unfulfilled. 

Gov. Noble went out of office in 1837 and after the death of Gen. 
Tipton in 1839, the project was forgotten. Fven the ground was not 
taken care of, cattle roamed over the burial ])laces of the heroic dead 
and their hallowed mounds were trampled upon. The historic oaks, 
showing bullet marks of the rifles were cut down in manv instances, 
until, finally at the meeting of the Constitutional Convention of 1850, 
when on Satui'day, December ?], John Pettit, a ivember of the Conven- 
tion from Tippecanoe County, introduced a resohition to incorporate a 
section in the Constitution of the State, article 4, section 10. which reads 
as follows: "It shall be tlic dntv of tlie General A^seniblv to lu'ovide 



TjIFE of GENERAX, JOHN TIPTON. 28 

for the permanent enclosure and preservation of the Tii^pecanoe Battle- 
field." 

In 1873, sixty-two years after the battle was fought, an appropria- 
tion of $24,000 was made by the legislature to enclose the ground with 
an iron fence and to otherwise provide for the care of the grounds. 
Only $18,000 of the amount was expended and $6,000 reverted to the 
State Treasury. In 1837 an appropriation of $3,500 was made for paint- 
ing the fence and other work. There is now in force a permanent 
ai)propriation calling for $300 a year to take care of the grounds, to be 
expended by the County Commissioners, a trust which is faithfully 
carried out. Congressman E. D. Crumpacker, from the Tenth District, 
introduced a bill in Congress asking for an appropriation of $25,000 
for the purpose of erecting a monument to the memory of those whose 
bones are buried on this historic battlefield. By an earnest appeal he 
s'ucceeded in getting the last session of Congress to make the appropria- 
tion and now, nearly a century since the battle was fought, a suitable 
monument is to be erected. 

The battle ground is now the property of the state and surround- 
ing it is a high iron fence. It is a beautiful grove of native forest trees 
r.nd thousands of ]ieo]:>le assemble near by every year, attending the 
battle ground camp meetings. The writer of this book was there a little 
over a year ago with several hundred news])a]ier publishers from neai-ly 
every State in the Union. Nearly all of them knew of Gen. Harrison 
and of the great battle, but very few had ever heard of Gen. Tipton. 
Ca})t. DeHart and William R. Wood made short addresses, in which 
they told of the battle, pointing out the positions of the Indians, the 
l^lace of attack and the spot where nearly two hundred American citi- 
zen soldiers fell for the advance of civilization. 

The battle of Tippecanoe established Capt. Tipton's fame as an 
Indian fighter and he was regarded as a leader to be depended upon in 
those troubleous tii^^es when the Indian was a continuous menace to the 
(Constantly encroaching settlers. 

The Indians were more or less troublesome during the years 1811 
and 1812. They would assemble and invade settlements, killing men, 
won^en and children. On one occasion, in Scott County, a band of 
Shawnee Indians made a raid on a settlement on Pigeon Eoost Creek, 
and killed every settler. It was one of the most atrocious, startling and 
cruel massacres ever chronicled in the annals of Indiana. 

On Septembpr 3, 1812, J. Payne and a man named Coffinan were out 



£4 I.IFR OF GENKRAT. JOHN TIPTON. 



e^^^ px ^<^^ tV ^^ '^r'J^ 



I.IKK OK GRNKRAI. .TOHX 



Translation of Governor Noble's letter to 
Gen. Tipton, requesting terms upon which the 
Tippecanoe Battle Grounds could be purchased. 
See co])y of original letter on opposite page. 



Indianapolis, Nov. 1st, 1834. 
The Hon. John Tipton, 
Sir 

The last legislature of our State, by a joint- 
resolution, made it the duty of the Governor to 
ascertain the terms u]ion which you would sur- 
render the grounds on which was fought the 
memorable Battle of Tippecanoe. With the 
events of that struggle, honorable mention has 
been made of your name, of your fellow officers 
and soldiers who survived by the line General who 
commanded, as well of those who were slain, and 
knowing your high estimate of the courage and 
]n-ivate virtues of your companions who fell and 
whose remains render that a sacred spot, I need 
say but little to induce you to appreciate the 
motive which prompts the measure that of a just 
regard for the memory of the lamented dead. 
Allow me to refer you to the resolution and 
reouest an answer as eai'ly as your convenience 
will permit 

I am Sir 

With Great P^steem 

Your Obt. Svt., 

N. Noble. 
(Resolution to be f(mnd in 
last volume of our laws.) 



26 T.IFE OF GENERAL JOHN TIPTON. 



K X K HAJj J () f r N T [ PT( ) N . 27 



Translation of (len. John Tipton's letter in 
answer to that of Governor Noble requesting 
terms n])on wliich the Tip])ecanoe Battle Grounds 
eonld he purchased. See eoi)Y of original letter 
on opposite page. 



Falls (if the Waliash 7th of Nov. 1S:]4. 
His Exev N. Noble 

Sir 

I have the honor to 
acknowledge the reeei])t of your favor of the first 
of this month informing me that by a resolution 
of the last legislature it was made the duty of the 
Governor to ascertain ui)on what terms I would 
surrender to the state the ground upon which was 
fought the memorable Battle of Tippecanoe, and 
in reply 1 have to inform you that in purchasing 
the battle ground T was actuated l)y no other 
motive than that of possessing it in order to 
preserve the bones of my com])anions in arms who 
fell there, and that it will afford me great 
pleasure to convey the battle ground to the State 
of Indiana, free of all charge, whenever it is signi- 
fied to "me that the State wishes it so conveyed 
for that ))ur])ose. 

(Signed John Ti])ton.) 



US T^TFR OF GENERAL JOHN TTPTOX. 

l»oe hunting ill the woods and were surprised and killed by a band of 
iwelve Indians. About sunset, on the same day, this party of Indians 
attacked the Pigeon Eoost Settlement, and in the space of one hour, 
killed one man, five women and sixteen children. The bodies of some 
were burned in the fires which consumed the cabins. But one woman 
\vith three small children escaped the awful massacre. She walked all 
night and arrived at the home of a neighbor, several miles away, the 
next morning. The Indians followed her, but the man with whom she 
took refuge was prepared for them, and with his rifle, succeeded in driv- 
ing them away. A company of Home Guards was organized and the 
country scoured for Indians, but they had gone so far away that the 
chase was abandoned. Gen. Tipton was notified and for several months 
he awaited the order to go to the rescue of the Settleirents. The 
massacre of Pigeon Roost is of such historical importance that a few 
years ago the Legislature made an appropriation for the purpose of 
preserving the ground where it occurred. A well built fence surrounds 
the scene of the massacre and appropriate inscriptions mark the graves 
of those who were killed. 

We find in Ti])ton's journal of 1812, an account of an expedition 
made to Driftwood Ford, of White River, where the Indians were giving 
the farmers much trouble. On the oOtli day of June they sent a call -to 
Gen. Tipton to come and drive the Red Men away. On July 5 he started 
Avith nine men, five more following in a few days. The next day they 
arrived at Fort Pleasant and on the evening of the same day they came 
itpon Fort Defiance. The next day thev divided their forces and 
scoured the country, but the Indians had heard that Capt. Tipton was 
after them, and knowing what kind of a Red Skin hunter he was, they 
stole away and never returned again. This ex])edition lasted in the 
neighborhood of twenty days. 

The following year Capt. Ti]iton was ])romoted to the rank of Major 
r.nd lie was located at Fort Vallonia, near where Indians were committ- 
ing many depredations. Ti])ton had under his command twenty-nine 
men, and on one of his scouting ex])editions he met a party of Indians on 
an island in AYhite river. He engaged them in battle and pressed the 
attack with such energy that the enemy fell back and were soon running 
for their lives, throwing their eruns and blankets awav, jum]nng into 
the river and swimming to the other shore. Several Indians were killed 
and wounded and a few more were drowned in attempting to swim 
ncross the river. Ti])i()n lost no men killed or wounded. 



LIFE OF GENERAL JOHN TIPTON. 



Tii)ton was a (lisei})linai*ian. He enforced order and obedience and 
was not slow to punish any one who would disobey his connnand. Dur- 
ing this engagement on the island he ordered that there must be no 
talking and that absolute silence must prevaij. While creex)ing up onto 
the Indians, a great big fellow kept talking. Tipton went up to him, 
took his gun from him and tied him to a tree among the tall horse 
weeds. He could not move and bullets from the enemies guns whizzed 
near him, keeping him in constant fear and he was glad to promise to 
"be still." Tipton loosened the strings and he went to the front and 
fought like a hero. This battle is- known to this day as the "Battle of 
Tipton's Island." 

In the early part of 1813 Indians were still troublesome toward the 
north, and Tipton was sent to subdue them. In April, with thirty-one 
men, an engagenient was had with the Indians in which two men were 
killed, however, the Indians were severely punished and began to make 
a rapid retreat. Then Gen. Tipton pushed forward, and on Salt River, 
now in Brown County, a running fight was kept up and there was more 
or less shooting every day. However, the Indians were severely ]iun- 
ished and by the middle of the summer all signs of trouble disappeared. 

It was in this year that peace was declared with Great Britain and 
no more trouble was apiu'ehended and the people went to work to 
develop farms, build roads and locate towns. Emigrants flocked into the 
country and it was but a few years until all the wild Indian waste was 
brought under cultivation, and evidences of prosperity prevailed in all 
Southern Indiana. At tlie declaration of peace Tipton was promoted to 
the rank of Brigadier-General by l^resident Monroe, and he returned to 
his home at Corydon, which city, had during his years of Indian war- 
fare, become the seat of the Territorial Ca]iital, it ])reviously bein<4' 
located at Vincennes. 

In 1816 Indiana because a state, the nineteenth territory to enter 
the ITnion. At the first election held in ?Iarrison County John Tipton 
was elected Sheriff and he was re-elected. In the State election held in 
August, 1819, he was elected a Representative to the State Legislature, 
and to this office also received a re-election. On January 11, 1820, the 
Governor appointed a Comndssion, consisting of Ti])ton, George Hunt, 
Johii (^onner, Jolm Gilliland, Stephen Ludlow, Joseph Bartholomew, 
Jesse E. Durham, Frederick Rapp, William Prince and Thomas Ennner- 
son, to select and locate a site for the new capital for the State. Vin- 
cenness, Corvdon, IMadison, Terre TIaute, Vallonia, Strawtown. Indi- 



;jo 



LIFE OF GKNFKAI. .rOHX TIPTON. 




GOVERNOR NOAH NOBLE. 



LIFE OF GENERAL, JOHN TIPTON. 81 

anapolis and other towns were petitioners for the capital and the eoni- 
niissioners visited all of them. The merits and demerits, the advantages 
and disadvantages of all sites were carefully investigated. After a con- 
siderable time, the Commission met at Indianapolis to determine the 
site. The bids had narrowed down between Strawtown and India- 
napolis, with a strong inclination toward Strawtown, due to the efforts 
of William Conner, then an influential citizen. General Tipton was 
favorable to Indianapolis and to head off further discussion and delay, 
he made a motion that Indianapolis be made the site of the new capital. 
Great excitement prevailed in this meeting, which took place in the 
home of John McCormick, the grand-father of Nicholas S. Martz, of 
Tipton. When the vote was cast and counted, Indianapolis was selected 
by a close margin. 

In 1821 Tipton was appointed a Commissioner by the Legislature, 
with a like Commissioner from Illinois, to locate the boundary line be- 
tween the two States. But for an error made by the surveyor, who 
failed to establish a true meridian, the great city of Chicago, would, 
today be in the State of Indiana instead of in the State of Illinois. Gen. 
Tipton insisted at the time that the territory comprising Cook County 
belonged to Indiana, but the surveyor's notes had a stronger influence 
than Ti])ton's argument, and Chicago was lost to Indiana. 

It was during this ]ieriod of the history of the State of Indiana that 
extensive improvements were inaugurated all over the United States. 
A great national road was being built through Indiana from Baltimore 
to St. Louis. During this session of the Legislature a public highway 
was conceived a hundred feet wide, running from Lake Michigan to the 
Ohio River. Gen. Tipton took great interest in these improvements 
and he was one of a Committee to negotiate with the Indians for a stri]) 
of ground through their reservations for the road. Evidences of this 
undertaking are still in existence, for in every town through which the 
road ]iasse(l, the streets are one hundred feet wide. This accounts for 
the great width of the main street in Eochester and other towns along 
the old Michigan Road. At this time canals were also being constructe<l 
and Ti])ton was one of the prominent men who planned and had sur- 
veyed a number of canal routes, among them the Wabash and Erie (^anal 
and the WhiteAVater (/"anal near Richmond. 

In 1823 Gen. Ti]iton was appointed Indian Agent by President 
Monroe for the Pottawatomie and Miami Indians. He was located at 
Fort Wavne, and made his home in the old block house, where he was at 



32 LIFE .. OF GENERAL JOHN TIPTON. 

all times safe from attacks by the Indians. It was here i7i.l824 that 
Allen County was organized and at Gen. Tipton's suggestion the County 
was named in honor of Col. James Allen, of Kentucky, who was killed 
at the Indian massacre at tlie River Raisen. While he was performing 
his duties as Indian Agent the President appointed him, together with 
Gen. Lewis Cass, of Detroit, and Governor John B. Ray, to negotiate a 
treaty with the two tribes over which the General was agent. A treat;^ 
was made at Paradise Springs, on October 16, 1826, at the junction of 
the Mississiniwa and Wabash Rivers, by which the Indians ceded all 
the north-west part of Indiana to the government. This cession in- 
cluded a part of Tipton County, the reserve line running through the 
town of Tipton. After the treaty was made many of the Miamis, who 
lived on the border, and therefore were not present, became restless 
and dissatisfied. They did not understand the terms of the treaty and 
threatened troul)le. David Foster, of Kokomo, did all he could to make 
them understand that the treaty was a fair one and that they should 
r;l)ey it and join in the great removal that was soon to take place. But 
they were stubborn and sullen.- They could not give up their old hunt- 
ing grounds. They had been so often deceived and disappointed that 
they thought that this meant their final extinction. The traditions of a 
long ancestry a])]iealed to them and th.ey were very bitter toward the 
Government and the Big Chiefs that consented to the treaty. To give 
them a better understanding of the nature of the treaty, upon the sug- 
gestion of David Foster, it was arranged that Gen. Ti])ton come and 
ex]ilain to them the conditions of the treaty. A day was set and a great 
barbacue planned. Hundreds of Indians assembled and a l)ig dinner was 
served. Wild meats, corn bread and other luxuries of that day were 
s])i-ead u])on the ground and Gen. Tinton and a few other white guests 
sat and ate with the Red Men. Gen. Ti])t()n then s])oke to the assembly. 
He succeeded in making the terms of the treaty ])lain and they were 
satisfied and when the day can^e for them to go to the far west they 
(piietly submitted, not, however, without many regrets. Many tears 
were shed and more than once they turned and looked back, and with 
bowed heads bade "farewell, farewell, old, old, home.'' 

Many years ago the writer had frequent talks with David Foster 
about the early settlement of this county, and as nearly as we can deter- 
mine the place Avhere the barbacue was held i;. in the field about a half 
mile north and west of Tipton, near the old ?^lari'/ canning factory. 

This ]>rnc1i('ally ciKhMl all the hidiaii wars in liidinna, exec])! in 



T^IFE OF GENERAL, JOHN TIPTON. 88 

1<S38, when trouble arose over tlie removal of the Pottawatomies from 
their reservation in Marshall (\mnty, near Twin Lake and the Yellow 
River, and then it was only by the timely arrival of Gen. Tipton that 
blood-shed was averted. Twenty-two sections of good and fertile land 
were es])ecially reserved to the Pottawatomie Indians, presided over by 
four Chiefs, named Menominee, Pipinawa, Nakata and Macatawmaaw. 
Menominee was the oldest, a peaceable and pions Indian, always friend- 
ly to the whites. Early in life he forsook his pagan religion and became 
a Christian, joining the Catholic chnrch under the guidance of Father 
Theodore Badin, who was the first Catholic Priest ordained in the 
United States. In 1828 a (liapel was erected with an upstairs room 
where the Priest resided. A little village grew up around it and an 
effort made to agriculture. 

The reservation was in the path of the proposed Michigan road and 
frequent efforts had been made by the whites to get possession of it, and 
by continued bartering they succeeded in getting the three younger 
Chiefs, made stupid with drink, to sign their rights away. These three 
received 14,080 silver dollars for their share. Menominee did not sign 
the treaty, nor did he ever sign it. By the terms of the treaty, the 
entire tribe was to be removed to the Osage country, west of the 
]\rissouri RiA^er and the 6th day of August, 1888, was the date fixed for 
their departure. As the day approached the Indians became restless 
and there were mutterings and resistance threatened. To make matters 
worse and to precipitate a conflict, a squatter named Waters, settled on 
the reservation. This so enraged the Indians that in the dead hour of 
night tliey made an attack on his cabin and chopped the door down, but 
were driven away without the' shedding of blood. A re])ort of threat- 
ened trouble was made to Gov. Wallace, who rode all the way from 
Indianapolis to Twin Lake on horse back to investi^'ate. It was evident 
to him that there would be an outbreak among the Indians unless they 
were overawed by soldiers, so he called Gen. Tipton. With one hundred 
soldiers, Tipton arrived at the little village, finding nearly all the 
Indians near the Chapel attending worship and listening to the counsel 
of the good and wise Chief INfenominee. Tipton carried out his instruc- 
tions and the poor, oppressed Indians were surrounded and overpow- 
ered. Dejected and humiliated, they were forced to obey. General 
Tipton. Abel C. Pepi)er, the Government Indian Agent, and the Catholic 
Priest, Father Petit, counseled ]ipace and a consent to their removal. 



34 



LIFE OF GENERAL JOHN TIPTON, 



\^-F^ 



f-#^ 




'T^^i^t'^"^'^ 






LIFE OF GENERAL JOHN TIPTON. 85 

In answer to their argument, Chief Menominee made the following 
speech : *^ ^ P ^ *-^ *^ 

"Your President, tie does not know the 
truth. He does not know Menominee did not 
sign the land away. He does not know Menom- 
inee's people want to be peaceable and do not 
want the whiskey of the white man. He does 
not know the Young Chiefs were drunk and 
foolish when they signed the land away. Your 
Chief, the President, is a good man, and if he 
could know the truth he would not take 
Menon'inee away from his home, tied like a 
dog. He has not heard the counsel of the wise 
Chiefs. He has heard only the young Chiefs." 
With that he sat down and the silence that followed was oppre- 
sive. Finally, he arose, passed the ''pipe of peace" to General Ti])ton 
and counseled the tribe to obey the mandates of the white man. On 
September 4, 1838, General Tipton started to the far west with 859 men, 
women and children. Before leaving the tribe went to the graves of 
their fathers where they wailed piteously. An old French woman, 
seventy-two years old, was their only friend that gave them comfort 
and consolation. Her sympathies reconciled them and in her presence 
ihey kissed the cross and made ready for the long journey. The; 
women, children, the old and infirm were put in big Government wagons 
and the start was made, single file. Tt was a sad and sorrowful sight, 
like a funeral procession. Not a word was s]ioken, each being sullen, 
crestfallen and heartbroken. On the way 156 died of chills, fevers and 
malarial diseases. A few years later Menominee died of a broken 
heart. This was the last of the Pottawatomies in Indiana. 

This is the sad side of the Indian story and it creates a feeling, 
that after all, the Indian was not so uuich to blame for his savagery, 
when his hon]e, his land and his hunting ground were taken from him, 
sometimes honestly and sonietii>^es dishonestly. At the session of the 
Legislature, in 1907, Hon. Daniel McDonald, of Plymouth, succeeded 
in gettinir a bill passed, a])propriating 4'--500 for the purpose of restor- 
ing the old Mission Church and the erection of a monument -to the 
memory of the good pious old Indian Chief, Menominee. 

In all the Indian wars. General Tipton was foremost in all contests, 
and while lie had a bitter hati'ed for the Indian and was readv to take 



LIFK OF GENERAL, JOHN TIPTON. 



arms any time against them, he always fought them fair. He never 
killed an Indian because he was an Indian, but he fought them in a 
cause that demanded the possession of a country for a civilized and 
progressive race. His removal of the Pottawatomies is the only evi- 
dence of cruelty, however, he was acting under orders and the suffer- 
ings of the deported tribe were unavoidable. It was the only season of 
the year that they could be removed with as little exposure as possible 
and, perhaps, they fared better than they would had the removal taken 
l^lace earlier or later in the season. 

In the spring of 1828 General Tipton moved the Indian agency 
from Fort Wayne to the "Mouth of Eel River," near the junction with 
the AVabash, where the town of Logansport had just been surveyed. 
The town had not been named and Tipton suggested that it bear the 
name of "Mouth of Eel River." (^ther na lies were suggested, one of 
them being in honor of the great Indian Chief Logan, who had been 
friendly to the whites throughout all the Indian wars. To arbitrate the 
matter it was decided that Tipton and Col. Duret should shoot at a 
mark, and the one coming nearert to it, four shots out of seven, was to 
have the honor. Duret won by coming nearest the mark four times, 
therefore the town was named Logan. The suffix, "port," was after- 
ward affixed, making it "Logansport." 

On February 26, 1831, Gen. James Xoble, a United States Senator 
from Indiana, died in Washington. Ti])ton's name was vigorously 
advocated to fill the vacancy, but Gov. Ray appointed Hon. Robert 
Hanna, who served until the meeting of the next Legislature, when 
Tipton was elected in spite of the efforts to elect Hanna. At the next 
session Tipton was elected Senator to serve a full term of six years. 
While in the Senate he became a fast friend of President Andrew Jack- 
son, and upon more than one occasion, he was the President's guest at 
the Hermitage, in Tennessee. This friendship continued until the ques- 
tion of the renewal of the charter of the United States Bank. Tipton 
was in favor of the re-chartering of the banks, while the President bit- 
terly opposed it. Tipton argued hard, for he believed that the renewal 
of the charter would be of great advantage to the new States in the 
west. The bill passed, but when it went to the President, he vetoed it, 
thus ending one of the bitterest contests in Congress on financial 
questions. 

The President of the Senate ap])()inted Tipton Chairman of the 
Committee of Indian Affairs and it was he and OlivtM- H. Smith who 



IK GKNERAL JOHX Til 



l)roc*iired the jiassage of a bill to purchase the Miami Indian Reserve. 
making it possible for Tipton C'ounty to be organized and become a })art 
of the great State of Indiana. In a volume of biographical sketches of 
[""nited States Senators, among the archives now in Washington, 
appears the following: "John Tipton, the subject of this sketch, has 
been noticed as the Ensign hero of C'apt. Spencer's company at the bat- 
tle of Tippecanoe. He is of medium height, well set, short face, round 
head, low wrinkled forehead, sunken gray eyes, stern countenance, good 
chest, stiff sandy hair, standing erect from his forehead. He is the 
Chairman of the Committee of Indian Affairs, a position he is eminently 
qualified for, having been for many years Indian Agent and well 
acquainted with most of the western tribes. He is a man of great 
energy and character, is a most faithful Senator, always in his seat 
ready to vote. He is not what is called an eloquent debater, still he is 
plain and strong as a speaker. He sees a question clearly and marches 
directly at it without rhetorical flourishes." 

After his retirement from tlie United States Senate Tipton refused a 
re-election, his life had been a busy and strenuous one, and he had a de- 
sire to return to private life. He believed in Indiana soil and at different 
times owned land in Harrison, Bartholomew, Allen, Huntington, Cass 
and Tippecanoe Counties. He, jointly with Col. Dnret, his brother-in- 
law, entered a large tract of land between Eel and Wabash Rivers, the 
present site of the City of Logans])ort. He became deeply interested in 
educational affairs and donated ground for school ])ur]30ses, the effect 
still being felt in that thriving City. He donated property to the order 
of Eree Masons and to churches and other ])ublic institutions. In addi- 
tion to these gifts he was liberal in all the towns in which he was in- 
terested. He donated ground on which the battle of Tippecanoe was 
fought to the state. He donated thirty acres of ground to Columbus, 
the County Seat of Bartholomew County. He gave freely to Eorl 
Wayne, Huntington and Logansport. He built a dam across Eel River 
at Logansport, which is still in existence, and made many other gifts 
for benevolent and educational pur]ioses. 

General Tipton was also prominent in the Masonic order in Indiana. 
In 1817 he received the Master Masons degree at Corydon and the next 
>'ear lie was a Be]n'esentative to the Grand Lodge, held January 12, 
1818, at Madison. He was elected Senior Warden, being the first man 
in the State to hold that office. In 1819 he was elected He^mty Grand 
blaster and in 1820 was elected Grand ^klaster, at JeffersotuiHe. I"p':n 



88 LIFE OF GENERAL JOHN TIPTON. 

liis removalto Fort Wayne he proceeded to organize a lodge of Masons 
there, the first meeting being held in his room at the fort. When the 
lodge was organized he was elected its first Senior Warden. He was 
again made a Representative to the grand lodge, which met at Indi- 
anapolis and was again elected Grand Master. Upon his removal to 
Logansport, in 1828, he immediately organized a lodge of Masons and 
in his honor, the lodge was nan^.ed Tipton lodge, No. 33. Again he was 
a Representative to the Grand Lodge. He was also a Royal Arch 
Mason, having taken the degree at Louisville in 1827. 

General Tipton was twice married. His first wife was his cousin, 
]^Jiss Jennie Shields, daughter of John Shields, who became famous in 
ilie Lewis and Clark Expedition. She was the mother of two sons, one 
being Spier S. Tipton, who became a graduate of West Point, and a 
Captain of Dragoons in the Mexican war, and who died in Mexico 
shortly after peace was declared. 

The second wife of General Tipton was Miss j\Tatilda Spencer, a 
daughter of his old neighbor and commander, who fell in the battle of 
Tippecanoe. Three children were born to the last marriage, George, 
John and Hariett. George, who managed his father's estate, died in 
Logansport. John, a graduate of West Point, died in California at the 
be2:inning of the rebellion, a Captain in the United States Army, and 
ITariett, who umrried Thomas S. Pumont, of Logansport, died soon 
nfter the Civil War in .Oregon. 

On February 14, 1839, Mrs. Matilda Tipton, wife of General 
John Tipton, died and on April 4, less than two months afterward, 
lier husband died after a very brief illness. While superintending a 
])roposed improvement of his extensive water privileges he contracted 
a severe cold from exposure, and on the next day, after a few hours of 
unconscious su^'^ering, he died. He was buried at Logansport on Sun- 
dav. April 7, 1839, with military honors and the rites of the Masonic 
order. 

Thus ended an eventful, busy, useful and honorable life. In his 
early childhood he realized that there were great possibilities and with 
that energy that marked his entire career he succeeded in whatever he 
undertook. He never forgot those who were in arjus against the 
Indians with him and his respect for his dead comrades was so strong 
Miat when a new county was organized he urged that it be named for 
ono of them. His appeal was often listened too and as a result the 
counties of Floyd, Posey. Scott, Warrick, Spencer, Wells . Daviess, 



LIFE OF GENERAI. JOHN TIPTOX. 89 

Parke, Harrison and Bartholomew were named for men who were en- 
gaged in the battle of Tipj^ecanoe. He was so unselfish that he never 
asked that any county be named for himself and it was never suggested 
during his life. The nearest he came to having his name perpetuated 
was when he donated thirty acres of ground to Bartholomew County 
for a County Seat, with the understanding that the town be named 
"Tiptona," but for political reasons the name was changed to Colum- 
bus. Tipton was very much chagrinned over the change and lost 
interest in his town, and it is said that he never visited it again. Rather 
than pass through it, in going from one place to another, he would 
make a detour around it. 

Five years after his death, Tipton County was organized, and some 
one who knew the General suggested that his name be honored and 
perpetuated by naming the new County Tipton. Thus is was that after 
he had passed from an eventful career, he was honored by the naming 
of a County and City to his memory. The citizens of Tipton and Tipton 
County are proud of the name. They honor him for whom it was 
named and, now, seventy years after his death, it is proposed to erect 
a monument that future generations may know that a '^listory maker, 
an Indian fighter, and a public spirited citizen," helped to make it pos- 
sible that the Great Central Northwest developed into the richest and 
most prosperous section of country in the entire Union. It is proper 
that the citizens of Tipton County take cognizance of this and commemo- 
rate the name of General John Tipton by the erection of a suitable 
monument to his memory. It is a spirit of patriotism and a recognition 
of the value of men to the country and welfare of all the people. 



40 LIFE OF GENERAL JOHN TIPTON. 



A Letter Written by a Tippecanoe Battle Hero. 



The writer of this work had the good fortune to eeciire a copy of a 
letter written by Judge Isaac Naylor, of Crawfordsville, who died in 
1873. The Jndge was in the battle of Tippecanoe and, alpo, was one of 
the first to arrive at the Pigeon Roost massacre after the Indians had 
left. Mr. M. W. Phillips, of LaFayette, who is devoting a good deal of 
time and energ>^ to hunting up facts and traditions of the early history 
of the state, recently met a daughter of the Judge, and by her permis- 
sion he looked over many letters tiled away by the old warrior. Among 
the pile of letters, he happened to find one giving a clefr, vivid and 
interesting account of incidents connected with this memorable march 
up the Wabash and the battle of Tippecanoe. It is throuorh the kind- 
ness of Mr. Phillips that we are able to re-produce it in tliis volume: 

*'I became a volunteer member of a company of riflemen and, on 
the twelfth of September, 1811, we com.menced our march toward Vin- 
cennes, and arrived there in about six days, marching 120 miles. We 
remained there about a week and took up the march to a point on the 
Wabash river sixty miles above, on the east bank of the river, where 
we erected a stockade fort, which he nan^ed Foi't Hnr^'ison. This was 
three miles below where the City of Terre Haute now stands. Col. 
Joseph H. Daviess, who conmmnded the dragoons, named the fort. The 
:';lorious defense of this fort nine months after by Captain Zachariah 
Taylor was the first stey) in his brilliant career that afterward uiade 
liit]i President of the T"^nitod States. A few days later we took up the 



IjIFE ok GKNERAI. JOHN TIPTON. 41 

march again for the seat of hidiaii warfare, where we arrived on the 
evening of November 6, 1811. 

"When the army arrived in view of Prophet's Town, an Indian 
was seen coming toward General Harrison, with a white flag snsj^ended 
on a pole. Here the ar^r-v halted, and a parley was had between Gen- 
eral Harrison and an Indian delegation, who assured the General that 
they do?ired peace and solemnly promised to meet him the next day in 
council to settle the terms of peace and friendshij) between them and 
the United States. 

"General Marston G. (lark, who was then Brigade Major, and 
Walter Taylor, and one of the Judges of the General Court of the Terri- 
tory of Indiana, and afterward a Senator of the United States of 
Indiana, (one of the General's aides) were ordered to select a place 
for the encampment, which they did. The army then marched to the 
ground selected about sunset. A strong guard was placed around the 
encampment commanded by Capt. James Bigger, and three lieutenants. 
The troops were ordered to sleep on their arms. The night being cold, 
large fires were made along the lines of the encam]mient and each 
soldier retired to rest, sleeping on his arms. 

"Having seen a number of squaws and children at the town, I 
thought the Indians were not disposed, to fight. About 10 o'clock at 
night Joseph Warnock and myself retired to rest, he taking one side of 
the fire and I the other. The other members of our company being all 
asleep. My friend Warnock dreamed the night before, a bad dream, 
which foreboded something fatal to him, or to some of his family, as he 
told me. Having myself no confidence in dreams, I thought little about 
the matter, although I observed that he never smiled afterward. 

"I awoke about 4 o'clock the next morning, after a sound and re- 
freshing sleep, having heard in a dream the firing of guns and the 
whistling of liullets just before I awoke from my slumbers. A drizzling 
rain was falling and all things were still and quiet throughout the 
camp. I was eiigaged in making a calculation when I should arrive 
at home. 

"In a few moments I heard the crack of a rifle in the direction of 
the point where now stands the Battle Ground House, which is oceu- 
nied by Captain DuTiel as a tavern. I had just time to think that some 
sentinel was alarmed and h?d fired his rifle without a real cause, when 
I heard the crack of another rifle, followed by an awful Indian yell all 
around the encaiv]mient. In less thru a minute I ' aw tho In''i;'ns 



lAVK OF OKXKKAJ. 



charging our line most furiously and shooting a great many rifle balls 
into our camp fires, throwing the live coals into the air three or four 
feet high. 

"At this moment my friend Warnock was shot by a rifle ball 
through his body. He ran a few yards and fell dead on the ground. 
Our lines were broken and a few Indians were found on the inside of 
the encampment. In a few moments they were all killed. Our lines 
closed up and our men in their proper places. One Indian was killed in 
the back part of Captain Geiger's tent, while he was attempting to 
tomahawk the Captain. 

"The sentinels, closely pursued by the Indians, came to the lines of 
the encampment in haste and confusion. My brother, AYilliam Naylor, 
was on guard. He was pursued so rapidly and furiously that he ran to 
the nearest point on the left flank, where he remained with a company 
of regular soldiers until the battle was near its termination. A young 
man, whose name was Daniel Pettit, was pursued so closely and furi- 
ously by an Indian as he was running from the guard fire to our lines, 
that to save his life he cocked his rifle as he ran and turning suddenly 
round, placed the muzzle of his gun against the body of the Indian and 
shot an ounce ball through him. The Indian fired his gun at the same 
instant, but it being longer than Pettit 's the muzzle passed by him and 
set fire to a handkerchief which he had tied around his head. 

"The Indians made four or five most fierce charges on our lines, 
yelling and screaming as they advanced, shooting balls and arrows into 
our ranks. At each charge they were driven back in confusion, carry- 
ing off their dead and wounded as they retreated. 

"Colonel Owen, of Shelby County, Kentucky, one of General 
Harrison's volunteer aides fell early in action by the side of the General. 
He was a member of the Legislature at the time of his death. Colonel 
Daviess was mortally wounded early in the battle, gallantly charging 
the Indians on foot with his sword pnd pistols, according to his own 
request. He m.ade this request three tii^^es of General Harrison, before 
he permitted him to make the chara:e. This charge was made by him- 
self and eight dragoons on foot near the angle formed by the left flank 
and front line of the encampment. 

"Colonel Daviess lived about thirty-six hours after he was 
wounded; manifesting hi;" ruling passions in life, ambition, patriotism 
and an ardent love of military glory. During the last hours of his life 
he said to his friends aronnd him, that he had but one thing to regret, 



LIFE OK GENERAI. JOHN 



tbat lie liad military talents; that he was about to be cut down in the 
meridian of life without having an opportunity to display them for his 
own honor and the good of his country. He was buried alone with the 
honors of war near the right flank of the army, inside of the lines of 
llie encampment, between two trees. On one of these trees the letter 
''D" is now visible. Nothing but the stump of the other remains. His 
grave was made here to conceal it from the Indians. It was filled up to 
ilie top with earth and then covered with oak leaves. I presume the 
Indians never found it. This precautionary act was performed as a 
mark of peculiar respect for a distinguished hero and patriot of 
Kentucky. 

''Captain Spencer's company of mounted riflemen, composed the 
j'ight flank of the army. Captain Spencer and both his Lieutenants 
were killed. John Tipton was elected and commissioned as Ca^jtain of 
this Company in one hour after the battle, as a reward for his cool and 
deliberate heroism displayed during the action. He died at Logans- 
port in 1839, having been twice elected Senator of the United States 
from the State of Indiana. 

''The clear and calm voice of General Harrison was heard in words 
of heroism in every part of the encampment, during the action. Colonel 
Boyd behaved very bravely after repeating these words: 'Huzza! ^My 
sons of gold, a few more fires and victory will be ours!' 

''Just after daylight the Indiaiis retreated across the ]->rairie 
toward their town, carrying off their wounded. This retreat was fro^n 
the right flank of the encampment, composed of two rifle companies, 
commanded by Captains Spencer and Eobb, having retreated from the 
other portions of the encampment a few minutes before. As their re- 
treat became visible, an almost universal shout was raised by our men. 
'Huzza! Huzza! Huzza!' This shout was nearly equal to that of the 
savages at the commencement of the battle, ours was the shout of 
victory, theirs was the shout of ferocious, but disappointed hope. 

"The morning light disclosed the fact that the killed and wounded 
of our army, numbering between eight and nine hundred men, amounte 1 
to one hundred and eighty. Thirty-six Indians were found dead near 
<mr lines. Many of their dead were carried off during the battle. Thi'^ 
fact was proved by the discover^^ of many Indian graves recently made 
near their town. Ours was a bloody victory, theirs a bloody defeat. 

"Soon after breakfast an Indian Chief was discovered on the 
l)rairie, about eighty yards from our front line, wi'apped in a piece of 



44 LIFK OF GENERAI. JOHN TIPTON. 

white cloth. He was found by a soldier by the name of Miller, a resi- 
dent of Jeft'ersonville, Indiana. The Indian was wounded in Oxie of his 
legs, the ball having penetrated his knee and passed down his leg, 
breaking the bone as it passed. Miller put his foot against him and he 
raised up his head and said: 'Don't kill me, don't kill me.' At the 
same time five or six regular soldiers tried to shoot him, but their 
muskets snapped and missed fire. Major Davis Floyd came riding 
toward him with dragoon sword and pistols and said he 'would show 
then how to kill Indians,'* when a messager came from General Har- 
rison, commanding that he should be taken prisoner. He was taken 
into the camp, where the surgeons dressed his wounds. Here he re- 
fused to speak a word of English or tell a word of truth. Through the 
aiedium of an interpreter he said that he was a friend to the white peo- 
|)le and that the Indians shot him, while he was coming to the camp to 
tell General Harrison that they were about to attack the army. He re- 
fused to have his leg amputated, though he was told that amputation 
was the only means of saving his life. One dogma of Indian supersti- 
tion is that all good and brave Indians, when they die, go to a delightful 
region, abounding with deer and other game, and that to be a success- 
ful hunter, he should have all his limbs, his gun and his dog. He there- 
fore preferred death with all his limbs to life without them. In accord- 
ance with his request he was left to die, in company with an old squaw, 
who was found in the Indian town the next day after he was taken 
iirisoner. They were left in one of our tents. 

"x\t the time this Indian was taken prisoner, another Indian, who 
was wounded in the body, rose to his feet in the middle of the prairie, 
and began to walk toward the woods on the opposite side. A number 
of regular soldiers shot at him and missed him. A man who was a mem.- 
ber of the same company with me, Henry Huckleberry, ran a few steps 
into the prairie and shot an ounce rifle ball through his body and he fell 
dead near the margin of the woods. Some Kentucky volunteers went 
across the prairie immediately and scalped him, dividing his scalp into 
four pieces. Each one cutting a hole in each piece, putting his ramrod 
through the hole, and ])lacing his part of tlie scalp just behind the first 
thimble of his gun, near its muzzle. Such wps the fate of nearly all the 
Indians found dead on the battle ground, and such was the disposition 
of their scalps. 

"The death of Owen, and the fact that Daviess was mortally 
wounded, with the remembrance also that a large ))oi'tion of Kentucky's 



LIFE OF GENERAL, JOHN TIPTON. 45 

best blood had been shed by the Indians, must be their apology for this 
barbarous^conduct. Such conduct will be excused by all who witnessed 
the bloody scenes of this battle. 

"Tecumseh being absent at the time of battle, a chief called White 
Loon, was the chief commander of the Indians. He was seen in the 
morning after the battle, riding a large white horse in the woods across 
the prairie, where he was shot at by a volunteer named Montgomery, 
who is now living in the southwest part of this State. At the crack of 
his rifle the horse jumped as if the ball had hit him. The Indian rode 
off toward the town and we saw him no more. During the battle the 
Prophet was safely located on a hill, beyond the reaeh of our balls, 
praying to the Great Spirit to give the victory to the Indians. Having 
previously assured them that the Great Spirit would change our powder 
into ashes and sand. 

"We had about forty head of beef cattle when we came to the bat- 
tle ground. They all ran off the night of the battle, or they were driven 
off by the Indians, so that they were all lost. We received rations for 
two days on the morning after the battle. We received no more rations 
until the next Tuesday evening, being six days afterward. The Indians 
having retreated to their town, we performed the solemn duty of con- 
signing to their graves our dead soldiers, without shrouds or coffins. 
They were placed in graves about two feet deep, from five to ten in 
each grave. 

''General Harrison having learned that Tecumseh was expected to 
return from the south with a number of Indians whom he had enlisted 
in his cause, called a council of his officers, who advised him to remain 
on the battlefield and fortify his camp by a breastwork of logs around, 
about four feet high. This work was com]ileted during the day and all 
the troops were placed immediately behind each line of the work when 
they were ordered to pass the watchword from right to left every five 
minutes, so that no man was permitted to sleep during the night. The 
watchword was 'Wide awake,' 'Wide awake.' To me it was a long, 
cold, cheerless night. 

"On the next day the dragoons went to Prophet's Town, which they 
found deserted by all the Indians, except an old squaw, whom they 
])rouHit into the camp and left her with the wounded chief before 
mentioned. The dragoons set fire to the town and it was all consumed. 
castiuQ- ui-» a brilliant lia:ht amid the darkness of the ensuing night. I 
arrived at the town when it was about half on fire. I found large 



OF GENKRAI. TOHX TIPTON. 



quantities of corn, beans and peas. I filled my knapsack with these 
articles and carried them to the camp and divided them with the mem- 
bers of our mess, cconsisting of six men. Having these articles of food 
we declined eating horse flesh which was eaten by a large portion of 
our men." 



LIFE OF GENERAL JOHN TIPTON. 







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48 LIFE OF QENEBAL JOHN TIPTON. 



Life of Tecumseh Kamskaka. 



It was Tecumseh and the Prophet, his brother, that fomented 
trouble between the Indians and the white settlers throughout Indiana. 
Nearly all the other Indian nations were disposed to become friendly, 
but by the intrigue of the British government, the Indians were slow 
to obey the mandates of the American government. The war of 1812 
was brewing and it was the policy of Great Britain to cause as much 
unrest among the Indians in the west as possible, to make it all the 
more possible for them to carry on war in the east. Great Britain found 
a great friend in Tecumseh and it took a bloody battle and a humilat- 
ing defeat to convince the Indians that they could not assist England, 
maintain their tribal relations and hold possession of so rich a country 
as Indiana. It is not certain that the warrior Tecumseh was in the 
battle of Tippecanoe, (for there is no evidence that he was near.) Some 
writers have said that had he been there, results would have been quite 
di^prent. Perbans it wonld be of interest to produce, iri connection 
with the life of General Tipton, a biographical sketch of the lives of 
these two noted Indian Chiefs. 

Tecumseh Kamskaka, (signifying a wildcat springing on its prey,) 
wa« born of Shawnee parentasre, at Old Piqua. near Sprinsrfield, Ohio, 
-•'Pd was one of the boldest and most active of the braves who opposed 
"^^ad Anthonv Wavne in 1794-95 and was at the treatv at Greenville. 
.\« earlv as 1804, be bad begun the execution of a scheme in connection 
>^'ith his brother, ''The Prophet," for confederatino: the we<^terTi Indians 
for the purpose of exterminating the white people. He visited many 



LIFE OF GENERAL JOHN TIPTON. 49 

tribes with his brother, who pretended to be a Commissioner from the 
Great Spirit. He was partially successful, when his plans were de- 
feated by General Harrison at the battle of Tippecanoe. He next sought 
an alliance with the Seminoles, in Florida, the Creeks, in Alabama and 
Georgia, and tribes in Missouri. Not meeting with success, he returned 
to Indiana. In the fall of the same year, together with his brother, 
"The Prophet," he made another trip to the south. He took his 
brother with him, partly to employ him as a cunning instrument in 
managing the superstitious Indians, and partly to prevent his doing 
mischief at home in Tecumseh's absence. About thirty warriors ac- 
companied them. His mission was to engage the barbarians as allies 
for the British and against the colonists. The Choctaws and Chick- 
asaws, through whose country Tecumseh passed, would not listen to 
him, but the Seminoles and Creeks lent him willing ears. He addressed 
the Creeks for the first time in the lower part of Alabama, late in 
October. Soon afterward, having addressed the Creeks at different 
points, he approached a great council called by a United States Indian 
Agent, at Toockabatcha, the ancient Creek capital, where fully 5,00',) 
of the barbarian nations were gathered. Tecumseh marched with 
dignity into the square with his train of thirty followers, entirely 
naked, excepting their flaps and ornaments, their faces painted black, 
their heads adorned with eagles' feathers, while buffalo tails dragged 
behind, suspended by bands around the waists. Like appendages were 
attached to their arms, and their whole appearance was 
as hidious as ]K)ssible, while their bearing was uncommonly pompous 
and ceremonious. They marched round and round in the square, and 
then approached the Creek Chiefs, gave them the Indian salutation of 
a handshake at arm's length and exchanged tobacco in token of friend- 
ship. They kept up this pretense daily until the Indian Agent departed. 
That night a council was held in the great I'ound house. It was packed 
with eager listeners. Tecumseh made a firery and- vengeful speech, ex- 
horting the Creeks to abandon the customs of the ])ale faces and return 
to those of their fathers for it was unworthy not to follow the footsteps 
of the noble hunter and warrior. He warned them that the whites \veve 
seeking to exterminate them and possess their country, and he told 
them that their friends, the British, had sent him from the Great Lake 
to invite them to the war path. The wily Prophet, who had been told 
by the British when a comet would appear, told the excited multitude 
that thev would see the arm of Tecumseh, like ]iale fire, stretched out 



50 I. IKK »)K GKXKHAK .lOHN TIl'ION. 

in the vault of Heaven at a certain time, and thus they won Id know by 
that sign when to begin the war. The people looked upon him with 
awe, for the fame of Tecumseh and the Prophet had preceeded them. 
Tecumseh continued his mission with partial success, however, he met 
with opposition here and there. Among the most conspicuous of the 
opposition was Tustinuggee-Thhicco, the Big Creek Warrior. Tecumseh 
tried every art to convert this big chief to his purpose. At length he 
said, ' ' Tustinuggee-Tlilucco, your blood is white. You have taken my 
redsticks and my talk, but you do not mean to fight. T know the reason, 
you do not believe the Great Spirit has sent me. You shall believe it. 
I will leave directly and go straight to Detroit. Yvlien I get there, I 
will stamp my foot upon the ground and shake down every house in 
Toockabatcha." Strangely enough, at about the time Tecumseh must 
have arrived at Detroit, there was heard a deep run^bling under ground 
all over the Alabama region, and there was a heaving of the earth that 
made the houses of Toockabatcha reel and totter as if about to fall. The 
startled savages ran out, exclaiming "Tecumseh is at Detroit! Tecumseh 
is at Detroit! We feel the stamp of his foot!" It was the shock of an 
earthquake that was felt all over the gulf region. At the same time, 
the comet, "the blazins: arm of Tecumseh," appeared in the sky. These 
events made a powerful impression on nearly the whole Creek nation, 
but it did not move the "Big Warrior" from his alligeance to the 
United States. The Creeks, however, rose in arms, and in less than two 
years their nation was ruined. Tecumseh 's visit lirouglit dreadful 
calamity u]ion them. 

After being driven out of Indiana, Tecumseh joined the British 
army and was commissioned a Brigadier-General. Pie was killed at the 
battle of Thames, in Canada, October 5, 1813. It is supposed that his 
.^layer was Col. Richard M. Johnson, of Kentucky, who was afterward a 
candidate for Vice-President of the United States. 

It was not long before his death, when his glory was at its heighth 
and he was meting out revenge on the Americans, that Commodore 
Perry fought the great battle of Put-inBay, the report of which coined 
the famous phrase, "We have met the enemy and they are ours." At 
one time during this great battle of the lakes, the British were gaining 
an advantage and were hurling shot thick and fast into Perrv's flagshi]i. 
It appeared that it would sink, when Perry jumped to the flagstaff and 
in full view of the British guns, cried out, "Don't give up the ship." 
Each man vied with the other to do his best and soon the British bea:an 



LIFE OF GENERAL JOHN TIPTON. 



to show signs of weakening and when the American ships pressed upon 
tlieni, they hoisted the white flag, tlie battle was over and the Stars and 
Stripes waved from the topmost mast, signalling "victory" to all the 
world. Two ships, two brigs, one schooner and one sloop were captured 
and others went to the bottom of the lake. The result of this had a 
dejn-essing effect upon Tecumseh and he resolved that he would never 
surrender nor give himself up to the Americans and when he saw fate 
staring him in the face he boldly stood before the sword of a Kentucky 
Colonel and allowed himself to be cut to his death. 



52 



L.IFE OF QENEBAIi JOHN TIPTON. 




THE PROPHET. 



LIFE OF GENERAL JOHN TIPTON. 



Life of The Prophet Elkswatawa. 



The Prophet was also born near Piqua, Ohio, and in his early life 
was a worthless, drunken vagabond. He was ugly, quarrelsome and 
lazy. In a fight with a neighbor Indian, he lost an eye, an accident 
which ever afterward gave him a hidious appearance. This deformity 
he turned to account and used his bad eye to frighten the impression- 
able and superstitious. As early as 1805 he pretended to be supernat- 
nrally guided. He assumed the character of a "Medicine Man," and 
claimed to be directed by the Great Spirit. He cleverly began his 
scheme by falling suddenly one night while lighting his pipe, and laying 
apparently dead until he was borne away for burial. Then he opened 
his eye and said: ''Be not fearful, I have been in the land of the 
Blessed. Call the nation together, that I may tell them what T have 
seen and heard." An assembly was summoned and he told a marvelous 
story of the land he had seen and the instructions and warning he had 
received. From that time he was a preacher and was called "The 
Prophet." So great was his influence that his disciples believed he 
possessed many of the powers of the Great Spirit. He told wonderful 
1ales of his doings, saying that he could make pumpkins as large as 
wigwams spring from the ground, and corn so large that one ear would 
feed a dozen men. So great was his fame at one time, that the southern 
shores of Lake Superior and Michigan were almost depopulated and 
traders were compelled to abandon business, such throngs flocked to 
hear The Prophet. Not more than one-third of the deluded fanatics 



54 LIFE OK GRNRKAT. JOHN TIPTON. 

jeturned, the greater part having perished of hunger, cold and fatigue. 
On the evening before the battle of Tippecanoe, after having prom- 
ised General Harrison to give an answer the next morning as to accept- 
ing terms of peace, he surrounded himself with his dupes and prepared 
for treachery and murder. He brought out a pretended magic bowl. 
In one hand he held a "sacred torch," in the other a string of "holy 
beans," which was accounted miraculous in their effects. His followers 
were all required to touch this talisman and be made proof against harm 
and the white man's bullets, and then to take an oath to exterminate 
the pale faces. When this was accomplished The Prophet went through 
a long series of incantations and mysterious movements. He danced 
around the fire, appearing to be in intense agony, groaning and wreath- 
ing and twisting himself into all kinds of contortions. Then turning 
to his highly excited band, about 700 altogether, he told them that the 
time to attack the white man had come. ' ' They are in your power, ' ' he 
said, holding up the holy beans as a reminder of their oaths. "They 
sleep now and never will wake. The Great Spirit will give light to us 
and darkness to the white man. Their bullets shall not harm us, your 
weapons shall be always fatal. ' ' Then followed war songs and dances, 
until the Indians, wrought up to a perfect frenzy, rushed forth to attack 
Harrison's camp without a leader. It was these orgies that Ensign 
Tipton heard while standing guard and he gave the alarm that the 
Indians were upon the camp. Stealthily the treacherous Indians crept 
through the long grass of the prairie in the deep gloom, intending to 
surround their enemy's position, kill the sentinels, rush into camp and 
massacre every one. The story of the battle is too well known to repeat 
here, but the result caused the Indians to doubt The Prophets inspira- 
tions by the Great Spirit. When he cunningly told them that his predic- 
tions concerning the battle had failed because his wife had touched the 
sacred vessels and broke the charm, they cursed him with reproaches. 
Even Indian superstition could not accept that flimsy falsehood for aii 
excuse, and The Prophet was deserted by his disappointed followers 
and he was compelled to seek refuge among the Wyandottes. His 
power and influence were gone and he went to Canada where he died a 
miserable death. 



LIFE OF GENERAL JOHN TIPTON, 55 



Events Leading Up to The Battle of Tippecanoe. 



August 20, 1794, — Battle of the Maumee Eapids, where General 
Anthony Wayne disastrously defeated the united Indian tribes. In 
this battle Harrison, serving as aid to General Wayne, first met in com- 
bat the young chief Tecumseh, who led the Shawnee Indians, 

August 3, 1795. — Treaty at Greenville, Ohio, between Wayne and 
eleven Indian chiefs, ceding to the United States the disputed lands in 
the Maumee River Valley. Tecumseh refused to attend the council and 
never recognized the terms of the treaty. 

1795-1801. — Wm, H. Harrison made Captain in 1795; secretary of 
'he North-West Territory in 1798; delegate from that territory to 
Congress in 1799; and governor of the newly formed Territory of 
Indiana in 1801. 

1803- '05. — Treaty between Harrison and the Indians. 
1804- '05. — British agents inciting northwestern Indians to enmity 
against the Americans. 

1805. — The Shawnee chief, Tecumseh, and his brother, The Prophet 
began the formation of the confederation of western Indian tribes for 
the recovery of their lost domain. The Prophet claimed to represent 
the Great Spirit and wielded a powerful religious influence on the 
Indians of various tribes, while Tecumseh moved from tribe to tribe 
from the Great Lakes to the Gulf, advocating the principle that the 
Indians were one people and that the lands being common property 
could not be sold by one tribe without the consent of all. 

Spring of 1808. — By invitation of the Kickapoos and Pottawatomies 
Tecumseh and The Prophet removed with their tribe of Shawnees to 



56 LIFE OF QENERAl. JOHN TIFTON. 

tlie junction of the Tippecanoe and Wabash rivers where Prophet's 
Town was built and the headquarters of the Indian confederacy, 
established. 

August, 1808. — The Prophet visited Governor Harrison at Vin- 
cennes and disclaimed evil intentions in his influence over the Indian 
n-ibes of the west. 

September 30, 1809.— Treaty at Fort Wayne in which Harrison 
purchased from the assembled chiefs title to two large bodies of land. 
Tecumseh was absent when this treaty was made and on hi;^ return pro- 
tested against the validity of the sale, even threatening with death some 
(if the chiefs who took part in the council. 

July, 1810. — Harrison sent a conciliatory message to The Prop! ■' 
at Prophet's Town. 

August 12-22, 1810. — Tecumseh visited Governor Harrison at Vin- 
lennes accompanied by seventy-five armed Indians. Frequent inter- 
views were held in which Tecumseh protested against the sale of lands 
at the last council at Fort Wayne. He openly told the governor of the 
powerful confederation he was forming, and of an intended visit to the 
British while on a trip to the Huron tribe. The conference on August 
20 nearly ended in open hostility. 

1810- '11.— Numerous minor attacks were made on settlers, who 
retaliated. Early in 1811 the British Agent of Indian Affairs took 
active steps to incite the northwestern Indians to discontent. In June, 
1811, Harrison sent a warning message to Tecumseh at Prophet's Town, 
and on July 27, Tecumseh appeared at Vincennes, accompanied 
by a considerable band of Indians, enroute to southern tribes to 
complete his confederation. Anticipating this visit, the Governor had 
a review of the militia, numbering about 750 men. Tecumseh soon left 
for the south, and Harrison understanding that he would return in three 
months time, determined to move at once on the Indians at Prophet's 
Town and strike a blow at the confederation. 

October 7, 1811. — The blow was struck, the Battle of Tippecanoe 
was fought, won and the Four Great North-W^est Territories saved from 
the British. It was in this battle that the fame of Ensign John Ti]:)ton 
became noted as a warrior and an Indian fighter.