Rural Missouri - June 2013 - (Page 28)

1812 Missouri’s ForgottenWar Territorial Gov. Clark quells Indian attacks during the War of 1812 O by Jim Denny info@ruralmissouri.coop n June 4, 1812, the Territory of Louisiana became the Missouri Territory. As a secondclass territory, Missouri could now elect a delegate to Congress and vote for its own territorial legislature. Two weeks later, however, the United States declared war on Great Britain, plunging the fledgling territory into a state of war. Out on this western fringe of the nation, the impressment of American sailors or access to foreign ports meant little as reasons to go to war with England. For Missourians, most transplanted from Kentucky, the war was going to be the dark and bloody ground days of the American Revolution all over again: Indians incited and supplied by British agents, raiding into frontier settlements and putting men, women and children to the tomahawk. Fortunately, the ground was not nearly so bloodied during Missouri’s War of 1812 as back in Kentucky in those earlier times. But blood did spill and settlers — including women and children — were slaughtered by Indian assailants. The frontier settlement vanguard along the Mississippi or Missouri rivers would huddle into stockades while hostile Indians filled the surrounding woods — or at least seemed to. Indian tensions already were high when Meriwether Lewis and William Clark first saw this country in 1804 on their great expedition. In what is now central Missouri, they noticed signs of a brewing Indian war. The Sauk-Fox Indians, who ranged through northern Missouri, had crossed the Missouri River to attack the Osage Indians whose villages were in southwest Missouri. Ioway Indians also were warring against the Osage. This dangerous situation was further complicated by the arrival of thousands of settlers, who poured into the new Louisiana Purchase lands. Between 1804 and 1810, the population doubled to more than 20,000 citizens. Some of these settlers headed for choice lands that also were claimed by Indians. By 1813, William Clark was territorial governor. He would have to employ his considerable skills to restrain land-hungry frontiersmen from encroaching on lands claimed by Indians. He needed some time to forge the necessary treaties with Indian nations to open these tribal lands up to American settlement. Treaty making was something at which Clark excelled. By means of treaties, Clark and Lewis had acquired a 50,000acre tract of land between the Missouri and Arkansas rivers from the mighty Osage Indian tribe in 1808. That same year, he directed the construction of Fort Osage, 350 miles up the Missouri River, to provide trade goods to the Osage and protection from their enemies. Four years earlier, William Henry Harrison convinced some Sauk-Fox to sign a treaty ceding a portion of northeast Missouri, along with large tracts in Illinois and Wisconsin. In 1808, Fort Madison was erected on the Mississippi River, above the mouth of the Des Moines River, to control the belligerent SaukFox Indians who were concentrated at their Rock River villages near present Rock Island, Ill. The war years were filled with anxiety that huge Indian armies were amassing along the upper Mississippi preparing to attack. The Shawnee leaders, Tecumseh and his brother the Prophet, were exhorting Indian tribes to join the British. The war chieftain, Black Hawk, led a faction of the Sauk-Fox tribe to the British side. Would they send their armies down the Mississippi River? Luckily, the dreaded attacks never materialized during the first two years of the war. The Territory of Missouri was unprepared to defend the scattered settlements of Missouri — or even St. Louis — against a British-Indian army. Despite the fact that only 241 regular Army soldiers were stationed west of the Mississippi River, it was vital that the Osage be kept neutral and that the Sauk-Fox and other hostile nations be held at bay. The attacks that did occur happened when small bands of Indians ambushed isolated settlers. In February 1812, in the remote Salt River country, the mother and nine children of the O’Neal family were murdered by a band of Kickapoo Indians. Fort Mason was built by Missouri Rangers soon after. In September 1812, a man and his wife were wounded and their horses and cow taken by a band of Indians outside Portage des Sioux. The following March, a young man was killed by Potawatomi Indians while hunting horses in the same vicinity. On Aug. 3, 1813, a group of men and boys picking turnips near Fort Howard were fired on by Sauk-Fox, who killed one settler and wounded another. The most successful military operations in Missouri were carried out by the four companies of the Missouri Rangers. During 1812 and 1813, these hardy frontiersmen were recruited from the Boone settlement on the Missouri River and other backwoods locales and led by men such as Capt. Nathan Boone, Daniel’s youngest son, who could “climb like a bear and swim like a duck.” The rangers kept up constant patrols in the hinterland that stretched from the Loutre Island settlement on the Missouri River to Fort Portage des Sioux and up the Mississippi River to Fort Madison. In July 1813, a patrol of 11 rangers had a bloody encounter with an equal number of Winnebagos near Fort Mason. The running battle left four rangers dead. The ranger patrols may well have discouraged additional Indian attacks during those troubled years. The Fort Osage factory trading post was closed in the spring of 1813. In the fall of that year, it reopened near present-day Arrow Rock. Directly across the Missouri River from the factory was the Boonslick settlement, the westernmost outpost of the American settlement frontier. Fort Madison also was closed in the fall of 1813. Unlike personnel at Fort Osage, who maintained friendly relations with the Osage, those at Fort Madison existed in an almost continuous state of siege by the hostile Sauk-Fox. Finally, on Sept. 3, the garrison at Fort Madison fired the fort and escaped with their lives. By then, Gov. Clark had managed through long negotiations to convince a large contingent of the Sauk-Fox tribe to separate themselves from Black Hawk’s pro-British band on the Mississippi River and to relocate to a site on the Missouri River near Little Moniteau Creek in today’s Moniteau County. The factory that had provided trade goods at Fort Madison was moved to the new village site. This seemed to be a good idea at the time, but 1,500 newly transplanted “friendly” Sauk-Fox Indians were now just 50 miles downriver from the sizable Boonslick settlement. Could they peacefully coexist? Nationally, the War of 1812 was starting to take a favorable turn. Oliver Perry’s victory on Lake Erie and the defeat and death of Tecumseh gave hope to Territorial Missourians that the war might have turned the corner. Little did they know that the most difficult days still lay ahead. Jim Denny from Lupus is a freelance writer and historian retired from the Missouri Department of Natural Resources. The lunette mural, “Indian Attack on the Village of St. Louis, 1780,” painted by Oscar Edmund Berninghaus in 1921, adorns a wall inside the Capitol in Jefferson City. It depicts the type of warfare that early Territorial Missourians faced as the War of 1812 waged.

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Rural Missouri - June 2013

Rural Missouri - June 2013
Table of Contents
Comments
Columns
Back to the land
Full steam ahead
Outdoors
Out of the Way Eats
Where shall I thee wed?
Missouri Snapshots contest
Hearth and Home
Missouri’s forgotten war
Plant during summer’s sizzle
Around Missouri
Marketplace
Neighbors
Just4Kids

Rural Missouri - June 2013

http://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/ruralmissouri/201912
http://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/ruralmissouri/201911
http://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/ruralmissouri/201910
http://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/ruralmissouri/201909
http://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/ruralmissouri/201908
http://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/ruralmissouri/201907
http://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/ruralmissouri/201906
http://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/ruralmissouri/201905
http://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/ruralmissouri/201904
http://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/ruralmissouri/201903
http://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/ruralmissouri/201902
http://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/ruralmissouri/201901
http://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/ruralmissouri/201812
http://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/ruralmissouri/201811
http://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/ruralmissouri/201810
http://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/ruralmissouri/201809
http://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/ruralmissouri/201808
http://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/ruralmissouri/201807
http://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/ruralmissouri/201806
http://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/ruralmissouri/201805
http://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/ruralmissouri/201804
http://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/ruralmissouri/201803
http://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/ruralmissouri/201802
http://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/ruralmissouri/201801
http://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/ruralmissouri/201712
http://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/ruralmissouri/201711
http://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/ruralmissouri/201710
http://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/ruralmissouri/201709
http://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/ruralmissouri/201708
http://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/ruralmissouri/201707
http://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/ruralmissouri/201706
http://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/ruralmissouri/201705
http://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/ruralmissouri/201704
http://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/ruralmissouri/201703
http://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/ruralmissouri/201702
http://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/ruralmissouri/201701
http://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/ruralmissouri/201612
http://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/ruralmissouri/201611
http://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/ruralmissouri/201610
http://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/ruralmissouri/201609
http://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/ruralmissouri/201608
http://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/ruralmissouri/201607
http://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/ruralmissouri/201606
http://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/ruralmissouri/201605
http://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/ruralmissouri/201604
http://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/ruralmissouri/201603
http://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/ruralmissouri/201602
http://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/ruralmissouri/201601
http://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/ruralmissouri/201512
http://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/ruralmissouri/201511
http://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/ruralmissouri/201510
http://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/ruralmissouri/201509
http://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/ruralmissouri/201508
http://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/ruralmissouri/201507
http://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/ruralmissouri/201506
http://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/ruralmissouri/201505
http://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/ruralmissouri/201504
http://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/ruralmissouri/201503
http://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/ruralmissouri/201502
http://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/ruralmissouri/201501
http://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/ruralmissouri/201412
http://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/ruralmissouri/201411
http://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/ruralmissouri/201410
http://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/ruralmissouri/201409
http://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/ruralmissouri/201408
http://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/ruralmissouri/201407
http://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/ruralmissouri/201406
http://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/ruralmissouri/201405
http://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/ruralmissouri/201404
http://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/ruralmissouri/201403
http://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/ruralmissouri/201402
http://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/ruralmissouri/201401
http://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/ruralmissouri/201312
http://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/ruralmissouri/201311
http://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/ruralmissouri/201310
http://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/ruralmissouri/201309
http://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/ruralmissouri/201308
http://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/ruralmissouri/201307
http://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/ruralmissouri/201306
http://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/ruralmissouri/201305
http://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/ruralmissouri/201304
http://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/ruralmissouri/201303
http://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/ruralmissouri/201302
http://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/ruralmissouri/201301
http://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/ruralmissouri/201212
http://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/ruralmissouri/201211
http://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/ruralmissouri/201210
http://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/ruralmissouri/201209
http://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/ruralmissouri/201208
http://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/ruralmissouri/201207
http://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/ruralmissouri/201206
http://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/ruralmissouri/201205
http://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/ruralmissouri/201204
http://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/ruralmissouri/201203
http://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/ruralmissouri/201202
http://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/ruralmissouri/201201
http://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/ruralmissouri/201112
http://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/ruralmissouri/201111
http://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/ruralmissouri/201110
http://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/ruralmissouri/201109
http://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/ruralmissouri/201108
http://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/ruralmissouri/201107
http://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/ruralmissouri/201106
http://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/ruralmissouri/201105
http://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/ruralmissouri/201104
http://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/ruralmissouri/videotest
http://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/ruralmissouri/201103
http://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/ruralmissouri/201102
http://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/ruralmissouri/201101
http://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/ruralmissouri/201012
http://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/ruralmissouri/201011
http://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/ruralmissouri/201010
http://www.nxtbookMEDIA.com