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War of 1812: Fort Dearborn Massacre

 

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Fort Dearborn Massacre

Fort Dearborn Massacre- August 15, 1812

The Battle of Dearborn, on the site of present-day Chicago, Illinois, was an important port on Lake Michigan during the time of the war.

In August of 1812, American General William Hull ordered an evacuation of American forces at Fort Dearborn because he feared a British attack. 66 soldiers, 18 children, 30 women, and nine Miami Indian warriors left the fort and began their journey east to Fort Wayne. About two miles south of the fort, Potowatomi Indians under the command of Chief Blackbird, angry about the increasing encroachment of White settlers on their land, ambushed the evacuees and killed half of them. Twelve of the eighteen children were killed by a single Potowatomi warrior. Fort Dearborn was subsequently burned to the ground and the region remained free of Americans until after the war. The survivors remained prisoners of the Potowatomi for more than a year. Some of the prisoners were sold to the British who promptly freed them.