The Gods of Prophetstown: The Battle of Tippecanoe and the Holy War for the American Frontier

TitleThe Gods of Prophetstown: The Battle of Tippecanoe and the Holy War for the American Frontier
Publication TypeBook
Year of Publication2011
AuthorsJortner, Adam
Number of Pages310
PublisherOxford University Press
CityOxford
Abstract

It began with an eclipse. In 1806, the Shawnee leader Tenskwatawa ("The Open Door", 1775–1836) declared himself to be in direct contact with the Master of Life, and therefore, the supreme religious authority for all Native Americans. Those who disbelieved him, he warned, "would see darkness come over the sun." William Henry Harrison (1773–1841), governor of the Indiana Territory and future American president, scoffed at Tenskwatawa. If he was truly a prophet, Harrison taunted, let him perform a miracle. And Tenskwatawa did just that, making the sun go dark at midday. In this volume, the author provides an account of the conflict between Tenskwatawa and Harrison, who finally collided in 1811 at a place called Tippecanoe. Though largely forgotten today, their rivalry determined the future of westward expansion and shaped the War of 1812. The author weaves together dual biographies of the opposing leaders and places the religious dimension of the struggle at the fore, recreating the spiritual landscapes trod by each side. The climactic battle, he writes, was as much a clash of gods as of men.

URLhttps://global.oup.com/academic/product/the-gods-of-prophetstown-9780199765294?cc=us&lang=en&#
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761694611

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