Friday, October 13, 2006

The War of 1812

"Well, in eighteen and fourteen we took a little trip
along with Colonel Jackson down the mighty Mississip.
We took a little bacon and we took a little beans,
And we caught the bloody British near the town of New Orleans."

The above lyrics are from the 1959 Grammy winning Song Of The Year, The Battle of New Orleans, written by high school principal and history teacher, Jimmy Drfitwood. Athough the lyrics say "1814," this now famous penultimate battle of the War of 1812 was actually fought in January 1815 -- call it poetic license. Though I grew up listening to this song, I did not know until this year's "Talking Spirits" tour that there was actually one battle fought in Wisconsin. History classes teach the Burning of Washington (remember Dolly Madison?) and Andrew Jackson's heroics in the Battle of New Orleans.

What is rarely mentioned even here in Wisconsin is that, in June 1814, British troops captured Fort Shelby at Prairie du Chien, and controlled the fort and territory until the 1815 Treaty of Ghent returned Wisconsin to the United States. Four veterans of the War of 1812 are interred at Forest Hill, including David Jaquish, who would have been 19 when the war began. Despite these early animosities, the United States and Great Britain have remained staunch allies ever since.


Annalee Blysse said...

Next weekend one of the older towns in the state is hosting a ghost walk at night at the cemetary. Maybe I'll drive down there. I haven't been out doing fun things like that for awhile. Your pics reminded me.

Heather said...

Sounds like a fun time to me - wish I could join you! In case you hadn't guessed, I love cemeteries, and it's been years since I did a ghost tour. You'll have to let us know how it was. *g*