Old Tippecanoe: William Henry Harrison and His Time

By Freeman Cleaves | Go to book overview

XIX
POLITICAL FORTUNES

HARRISON'S two brothers, Benjamin and Carter, were no longer living and the Berkeley plantation was in the hands of a nephew, Benjamin Harrison VII. The General remained nearly three weeks in Virginia. Honors of the usual sort were paid him by the Petersburg Volunteers who had fought at Fort Meigs. Another native Virginian, Colonel Waller Taylor, Indiana Senator and comrade-at-arms at Tippecanoe, accompanied the General to a public dinner at Poplar Spring.

While Petersburg was no Athens, the guest of honor admitted, "to be feasted in the prytaneum of their native city was the greatest reward which an Athenian general could receive." Toasts were offered to the town of Petersburg, the seed-bed of patriotism, to the State of Virginia, to "the fair daughters of America-May their sons be as attentive to their posts as Harrison."1

An invitation to a public dinner at Richmond was declined as the General departed homeward two days before the date set. Arriving at Pittsburgh he was approached by a party of five gentlemen who wished to engage the services of a pilot for their private craft. Harrison agreed to the request of Gorham A. Worth, a representative of the United States Bank who was on his way West to set up the branch at Cincinnati. An inspection of the boat took him immediately into the pantry where sufficient provisions were discovered to supply a voyage to New Orleans. So the party was encouraged to toss our supplies to immigrant families coasting down the Ohio on flatboats and rafts. "That tea and coffee . . . are luxuries that many of them may not taste for years," explained Harrison. 2

Spring came early that year and the river was broad and full. Immigrants "bound they knew not exactly where" frequently drew alongside for an hour's conversation while Harrison asked questions and gave needed advice. The voyage proved an enjoyable one for the party and the little "ark" reached port safely on April 10, 1817. Worth had an old travel-stained trunk filled with hard money which was landed and taken to the home of General James Findlay.

-243-

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Old Tippecanoe: William Henry Harrison and His Time
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page iii
  • ACKNOWLEDGMENT vii
  • THE HARRISON FAMILY ix
  • Contents xi
  • Illustrations xiii
  • I- Colonel Ben Harrison 1
  • II- Student of War 9
  • III- Delegate to Congress 22
  • IV- A New Frontier 33
  • V- Two Shawnee Brothers 51
  • VI- The Treaty of Fort Wayne 61
  • VII- quickening of War 69
  • VIII- The March Up the Wabash 83
  • IX- Tippecanoe 98
  • X- Kentucky Crosses the Ohio 112
  • XI- Massacre at the River Raisin 132
  • XII- A Fort is Built 151
  • XIII- The Siege of Fort Meigs 162
  • XIV- "We Have Met the Enemy . . ." 172
  • XV- Victory in Canada 188
  • XVI- The Hero of the Thames 206
  • XVII- Harrison Resigns 216
  • XVIII- Harrison Asks Congress to Judge 229
  • XIX- Political Fortunes 243
  • XX- South American Adventure 261
  • XXI- Depression Years 276
  • XXII- Evolution of a Candidate 288
  • XXIII- Harrison versus Van Buren 301
  • XXIV- Tippecanoe and Tyler Too 314
  • XXV- Jubilation and Mourning 329
  • Notes 345
  • Bibliography 392
  • Index 403
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