Indian wars

Struggles in the Northwest Territory

After the American Revolution, the most pressing Native American problem facing the new government was the unwillingness of the tribes of the Northwest to acquiesce in the settlement of the Ohio valley. After unsuccessful expeditions under generals Josiah Harmar (1790) and Arthur St. Clair (1791), Gen. Anthony Wayne defeated the tribes of the Northwest Territory at the battle of Fallen Timbers in 1794. By the Treaty of Greenville (1795) they agreed to give up their lands in Ohio and move to Indiana.

Settlers soon began to encroach on Native American lands in Indiana, provoking the Shawnee chief, Tecumseh, and his brother, the Shawnee Prophet, to organize a powerful native confederacy. In 1811, William H. Harrison defeated the Shawnee Prophet at Tippecanoe. Tecumseh allied himself with the British in the War of 1812 and was killed in the battle of the Thames (1813), which ended the threat from Native Americans in the Northwest Territory. During the War of 1812 the Creek also rose and were defeated (1814) by Andrew Jackson.

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The Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia, 6th ed. Copyright © 2012, Columbia University Press. All rights reserved.

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