Tecumseh, the Indian Chief
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Tecumseh, the Indian Chief

Tecumseh became an expert in tracking and shooting animals. His brother was the one who taught him the skills he needed to be a warrior for his tribe.

Tecumseh was born the fourth child of his family on a cold March night in 1768. His name means shooting star. His father was Pukeshinwau, which was the war chief of the Kespoko band of the Shawnies Indians and his mother was Methoatasskee.

His brother was named Cheeseekau and his brother was the one who taught him the skills he needed to be warrior for the tribe. Tecumseh became an expert in tracking and shooting animals.

In 1789, at the tender age of twenty one, his brother led the family and some followers to Tennessee to settle. On this trip, Tecumseh fall from his horse and shattered his thighbone. After several months the thighbone bone eventually healed and Tecumseh had a limp for the rest of his life due to the fall. When they got to Tennessee, the tribe lived with a Cherokee band of Indians called the Chickamauga.

In 1791, Tecumseh returned to Ohio to help hold the line against the advancing Americans. In November, 1791 one thousand warriors from several nations destroyed an army led by General Arthur St. Clair. For awhile the white settlers stopped moving into the Native American land. In the same year, his brother attacked and killed a settlement growing along the Cumberland River.

In August of 1794, the Native American Indian fought against the United States Army at the Battle of Fallen Timbers on the Maimee River in Ohio. The United States Army won and General Wayne prepared a peace treaty for the chiefs to sign. Eleven hundred chiefs signed it, but Tecumseh refused.

In the 1800’s, President Thomas Jefferson appointed William Henry Harrison governor of the Indiana Territory and President Jefferson encouraged Harrison to do all he could to acquire the Native American land.

In 1804 and 1805, the Shawnee faced starvation and disease. White men from the nearest settlement gave the Indians whiskey knowing that the alcohol would make the sick and weak.

During this sad period, Tecumseh’s youngest brother, Tensrwatawa had a vision. The Great Sprit said the Native America was being destroyed by contact with the white people. The Indians must return to the old way of life. The two brothers built a new village where the Tippecanoe and Wabash Rivers met in Indiana. The two brothers called the new village Prophetstown. In this village, no whiskey was allowed and traditional Native American religion could be practiced.

August, 1810 Tecumseh met with Governor William Henry Harrison and told him that no Native American had the right to sell land that belonged to all Native American together. Neither of the parties could see the others side. In November, 1811, Governor Harrison attacked the Prophetstown village with nine hundred men. Governor Harrison claimed victory at The Battle of Tippecanoe.

In 1813, Tecumseh died in the Battle of the Thames in Canada.

 

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Comments (1)
Ranked #38 in History

Very good article about the Ohio/Indiana region. I am from that area so I love the history but unfortunately it is a sad story. There is one reservation that I know of in Colorado where there is NO alcohol allowed and they have a casino where no smoking is allowed.

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