Harrison responded, "by my sword, and my own right arm, sir. William and Anna Harrison had ten children: Anna, who was frequently in poor health during the marriage, primarily due to her many pregnancies, outlived William by twenty-three years. She died on February 25, , at age eighty-eight. P president—historian Kenneth Robert Janken indicates that White's mother Madeline Harrison was said to have traced some of her mixed-race white ancestry to Harrison in Virginia. According to Janken, she opined that Dilsia, a female slave belonging to William Henry Harrison, had six children by him, born into slavery.
Marie was said to be Madeline's mother. No evidence corroborating these assertions has been discovered. Harrison began his political career when he resigned from the military effective June 1, With the aid of his close friend Timothy Pickering , who was serving as U.
Secretary of State , Harrison received a recommendation to replace Winthrop Sargent , the outgoing territorial secretary. President John Adams appointed Harrison to the position in July Harrison frequently served as acting territorial governor during the absences of Governor Arthur St. Harrison had many friends in the eastern aristocracy, and quickly gained a reputation among them as a frontier leader. He ran a successful horse-breeding enterprise that won him acclaim throughout the Northwest Territory.
Harrison became a champion of lower land prices, a primary concern of settlers in the Territory at the time. Congress had legislated a territorial land policy that led to high land costs, which many of the territory's residents disliked. In October , after it had been determined that the Northwest Territory's population had reached a sufficient number to have a delegate in the U. Congress, Harrison ran for election. In , at age twenty-six, Harrison defeated Arthur St. Harrison became chairman of the Committee on Public Lands and successfully promoted passage of the Land Act of , which made it easier to buy land in the Northwest Territory in smaller tracts at a low cost.
Harrison also served on the committee that decided how to divide the Northwest Territory into smaller sections. The committee recommended splitting the territory into two segments. The eastern section, which continued to be known as the Northwest Territory, comprised the present-day state of Ohio and eastern Michigan ; the western section was named the Indiana Territory and consisted of the present-day states of Indiana, Illinois, Wisconsin, a portion of western Michigan, and the eastern portion of Minnesota.
On May 13, , President John Adams appointed Harrison as the governor of the newly established Indiana Territory, based on his ties to the west and seemingly neutral political stances. Harrison, caught unaware, was reluctant to accept the position until he received assurances from the Jeffersonians that he would not be removed from office after they gained power in the upcoming elections. Senate , he resigned from Congress to become the first Indiana territorial governor in Harrison arrived at Vincennes , the capital of the newly established Indiana Territory on January 10, , to begin his duties.
In , while serving as the Indiana territorial governor, Harrison was assigned additional duties to administer the civilian government of the District of Louisiana , a part of the Louisiana Territory that included land north of the 33rd parallel. In October , when a civilian government went into effect, Harrison served as the Louisiana district's executive leader.
Harrison administered the district's affairs for five weeks, until the Louisiana Territory was formally established, effective July 4, , and Brigadier General James Wilkinson assumed the duties of the Louisiana territorial governor. In Harrison built a plantation-style home near Vincennes that he named Grouseland , alluding to the birds on the property; the thirteen-room home was one of the first brick structures in the territory. During his term as territorial governor, Harrison's home served as a center of social and political life in the territory.
The farm has been restored and is a popular, modern-day tourist attraction. In addition to his duties as territorial governor, Harrison founded Jefferson University at Vincennes in The school was incorporated as Vincennes University on November 29, , and is one of two U. President; the other is the University of Virginia , founded by Thomas Jefferson.
Governor Harrison had wide-ranging powers in the new territory, including authority to appoint territorial officials and the legislature, as well as authority to divide the territory into smaller political districts and counties. One of his primary responsibilities was to obtain title to Indian lands that would allow future settlement and increase the territory's population, a requirement for statehood. On February 8, , when President Jefferson reappointed Harrison as the Indiana territorial governor, he also granted Harrison the authority to negotiate and conclude treaties with the Indians.
The Treaty of St. Louis with Quashquame required the Sauk and Meskwaki tribes to cede much of western Illinois and parts of Missouri to the federal government.
Many of the Sauk, especially Black Hawk , greatly resented this treaty and the loss of lands, a primary reason the Sauk sided with the United Kingdom during the War of Harrison thought the Treaty of Grouseland appeased some of the Indians, but tensions remained high along the frontier. The Treaty of Fort Wayne raised new tensions when Harrison purchased land from the Miami tribe , who claimed ownership of the land, more than 2.
Harrison rushed the treaty process by offering large subsidies to the tribes and their leaders so that the treaty would be in force before President Jefferson left office and the administration changed. Although Harrison's pro-slavery position made him unpopular with the Indiana Territory's antislavery supporters, he used his political power to make several attempts to introduce slavery into the territory.
His efforts were ultimately unsuccessful due to the territory's growing anti-slavery movement. In , Harrison lobbied Congress to vote in favor of a petition to suspend Article VI of the Northwest Ordinance for ten years, a move that would allow slavery in the Indiana Territory. At the end of the suspension period citizens in the territories covered under the ordinance could decide for themselves whether to permit slavery. Harrison claimed the suspension was necessary to encourage settlement and would make the territory economically viable, but Congress rejected the idea.
In , after the separation of the western portion of the Indiana Territory to create the Illinois Territory , elections were held to select members of territorial legislature's upper and lower houses for the first time. Previously, lower-house members were elected, but the territorial governor appointed members to the upper house. Harrison found himself at odds with the legislature after the antislavery faction came to power and the eastern portion of the Indiana Territory grew to include a large, antislavery population.
By Harrison had moved away and resumed his military career. President Jefferson, the primary author of the Northwest Ordinance, had made a secret compact with James Lemen to defeat the proslavery movement led by Harrison. Although he was a slaveholder, Jefferson did not want slavery to expand into the Northwest Territory, as he believed the institution should eventually end. Under the "Jefferson-Lemen compact", Jefferson donated money to Lemen to found churches in Illinois and Indiana to stop the proslavery movement.
In Indiana , the founding of an antislavery church led to citizens' signing a petition and organizing politically to defeat Harrison's efforts to legalize slavery in the territory. Jefferson and Lemen were both instrumental in defeating Harrison's attempts in and to secure approval to expand slavery in the territory. An Indian resistance movement against U. The conflict became known as Tecumseh's War.
Tenskwatawa convinced the native tribes that they would be protected by the Great Spirit and no harm could befall them if they would rise up against the white settlers. He encouraged resistance by telling the tribes to pay white traders only half of what they owed and to give up all the white man's ways, including their clothing, muskets, and especially whiskey, which was becoming known as evil for American Indians.
As the warriors were dressed in war paint, their sudden appearance at first frightened the soldiers at Vincennes. The leaders of the group were escorted to Grouseland, where they met Harrison. Tecumseh insisted that the Fort Wayne Treaty was illegitimate. He argued that no one tribe could sell land without the approval of the other tribes; he asked Harrison to nullify it and warned that Americans should not attempt to settle the lands sold in the treaty.
Tecumseh informed Harrison that he had threatened to kill the chiefs who signed the treaty if they carried out its terms, and that his confederation of tribes was growing rapidly. He rejected Tecumseh's claim that all the Indians formed one nation. He said each tribe could have separate relations with the United States if they chose to. Harrison argued that the Great Spirit would have made all the tribes speak one language if they were to be one nation. Tecumseh launched an "impassioned rebuttal", but Harrison was unable to understand his language.
Some witnesses reported that Tecumseh was encouraging the warriors to kill Harrison. Many of the warriors began to pull their weapons, representing a substantial threat to Harrison and the town, which held a population of only 1, Harrison pulled his sword. Tecumseh's warriors backed down after the officers had pulled their firearms in defense of Harrison.
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Before leaving, Tecumseh informed Harrison that unless the treaty were nullified, he would seek an alliance with the British. In , while Tecumseh was traveling, Harrison was authorized by Secretary of War William Eustis to march against the nascent confederation as a show of force. Harrison led an army of more than 1, men north, to intimidate the Shawnee into making peace. Instead, the tribes launched a surprise attack on Harrison's army early on November 7, in what became known as the Battle of Tippecanoe.
Harrison defeated the tribal forces at Prophetstown , next to the Wabash and Tippecanoe Rivers. Harrison was hailed as a national hero and the battle became famous. However, his troops had greatly outnumbered the attackers, and suffered many more casualties during the battle.
When reporting to Secretary Eustis, Harrison informed him the battle occurred near the Tippecanoe River which led to its naming , and he feared an imminent reprisal attack. The first dispatch did not make clear which side had won the conflict, and the secretary at first interpreted it as a defeat.
The follow-up dispatch made the U. When no second attack came, the defeat of the Shawnee was more certain. Eustis demanded to know why Harrison had not taken adequate precautions in fortifying his camp against attacks. Harrison countered by saying he had considered the position strong enough. The dispute was the catalyst of a disagreement between Harrison and the Department of War that continued into the War of The press did not cover the battle at first, and one Ohio paper misinterpreted Harrison's dispatch to Eustis to mean he was defeated. At a time of high tensions with the United Kingdom , many Americans blamed the British for inciting the tribes to violence and supplying them with firearms.
In response, Congress passed resolutions condemning the British for interfering in American domestic affairs. A few months later, on June 18, , the U. The outbreak of war with the British in led to continued conflict with Indians in the Northwest. Harrison briefly served as a major general in the Kentucky militia until the U. Although Harrison received federal military pay for his service, he also collected a territorial governor's salary from September until December 28, , when he formally resigned as governor and continued his military service.
After the American defeat in the Siege of Detroit , General James Winchester , who became the commander of the Army of the Northwest, offered Harrison the rank of brigadier general. Harrison also wanted sole command of the army.
In September , after President James Madison removed Winchester from command, Harrison became commander of the fresh recruits. Initially, the British and their Indian allies greatly outnumbered Harrison's troops. During the winter of —13 Harrison constructed a defensive position along the Maumee River in northwest Ohio and named it Fort Meigs in honor of the Ohio governor Return J. After receiving reinforcements in , Harrison took the offensive and led the army north to battle the Shawnee and their British allies. Harrison's army defeated the British on October 5, , at the Battle of the Thames , in which Tecumseh was killed.
Secretary of War John Armstrong divided the command of the army, assigning Harrison to a "backwater" post and giving control of the front to one of Harrison's subordinates. Armstrong and Harrison had disagreed over the lack of coordination and effectiveness in the invasion of Canada. In May, following Harrison's reassignment, he resigned from the army; his resignation was accepted later that summer.
Congress awarded Harrison a gold medal for his services during the War of Following the defeat of the British and their Indian allies in western Canada, Harrison and Lewis Cass , governor of the Michigan Territory , were delegated the responsibility for negotiating a peace treaty with the Indians, known as the Treaty of Greenville Both treaties were advantageous to the United States. In the Spring Wells treaty the tribes ceded a large tract of land in the west, providing additional land for American purchase and settlement.
After John Gibson replaced Harrison as Indiana territorial governor in and Harrison's resignation from the army in , he returned to his family in North Bend. Harrison cultivated his land and enlarged the log cabin farmhouse, but he soon returned to public life. House of Representatives, where Harrison represented the state from October 8, , to March 3, In he was elected to the Ohio State Senate and served until , having lost the election for Ohio governor in In he ran for a seat in the U.
House, but lost by votes to James W. In Harrison was elected to the U. Senate, where he served until May 20, Fellow westerners in Congress called Harrison a "Buckeye", a term of affection related to the native Ohio buckeye tree. Appointed in as minister plenipotentiary to Gran Colombia , Harrison resigned from Congress and served in his new post until March 8, After Harrison returned to the United States from Colombia, he settled on his farm in North Bend, Ohio , his adopted home state, living in relative retirement after nearly four decades of government service.
Having accumulated no substantial wealth during his lifetime, he subsisted on his savings, a small pension, and the income produced by his farm. Harrison cultivated corn and established a distillery to produce whiskey. After a brief time in the liquor business, he became disturbed by the effects of alcohol on its consumers, and closed the distillery. In a later address to the Hamilton County Agricultural Board in , Harrison said he had sinned in making whiskey, and hoped that others would learn from his mistake and stop the production of liquors.
In these early years, Harrison also earned money from his contributions to a biography written by James Hall, entitled A Memoir of the Public Services of William Henry Harrison , published in That year, he made an unsuccessful run for the presidency as a Whig candidate. This was his job when he was elected president in The two became friends, and DeBaptiste became his personal servant, staying with Harrison until his death. He was hailed by many as a national hero. Harrison was the Northern Whig candidate for president in , one of only two times in American history when a major political party intentionally ran more than one presidential candidate the Democrats ran two candidates in Vice President Martin Van Buren , the Democratic candidate, was popular and deemed likely to win the election against an individual Whig candidate.
The Whig plan was to elect popular Whigs regionally, deny Van Buren the electoral votes needed for election, and force the House of Representatives to decide the election. They hoped the Whigs would control the House after the general elections. This strategy would have failed, as the Democrats retained a majority in the House following the election. Harrison ran in all the free states except Massachusetts, and the slave states of Delaware, Maryland, and Kentucky.
White ran in the remaining slave states except for South Carolina. Daniel Webster ran in Massachusetts, and Willie P. Mangum in South Carolina. A swing of just over 4, votes in Pennsylvania would have given that state's 30 electoral votes to Harrison, and the election would have been decided in the House of Representatives. Harrison was the Whig candidate and faced the incumbent Van Buren in the election. He was chosen over more controversial members of the party, such as Clay and Webster, and based his campaign on his military record and on the weak U.
The Democrats ridiculed Harrison by calling him "Granny Harrison, the petticoat general", because he resigned from the army before the War of ended. When asking voters whether Harrison should be elected, the Democrats asked what Harrison's name spelled backwards would be: They also cast Harrison as a provincial, out-of-touch, old man who would rather " sit in his log cabin drinking hard cider " than attend to the administration of the country.
This strategy backfired when Harrison and John Tyler , his vice presidential running mate, adopted the log cabin and hard cider as campaign symbols. Their campaign used the symbols on banners and posters, and created bottles of hard cider shaped like log cabins, all to connect the candidates to the "common man". Although Harrison had come from a wealthy, slaveholding Virginia family, his campaign promoted him as a humble frontiersman in the style popularized by Andrew Jackson. In contrast, the Whigs presented Van Buren as a wealthy elitist. The speech ridiculed Van Buren's elegant, White House lifestyle and lavish spending.
Old Tip he wore a homespun coat, he had no ruffled shirt: The Whigs boasted of Harrison's military record and his reputation as the hero of the Battle of Tippecanoe. The campaign slogan, " Tippecanoe and Tyler, Too ", became one of the most famous in American politics. Harrison received 53 percent of the popular vote to Van Buren's 47 percent, with a margin of less than , votes.
When Harrison came to Washington, he wanted to show both that he was still the steadfast hero of Tippecanoe, and that he was a better educated and thoughtful man than the backwoods caricature portrayed in the campaign. He took the oath of office on Thursday, March 4, , a cold and wet day. The inaugural address was a detailed statement of the Whig agenda, essentially a repudiation of Jackson's and Van Buren's policies. Harrison promised to reestablish the Bank of the United States and extend its capacity for credit by issuing paper currency Henry Clay's American system ; to defer to the judgment of Congress on legislative matters, with sparing use of his veto power; and to reverse Jackson's spoils system of executive patronage.
He promised to use patronage to create a qualified staff, not to enhance his own standing in government. As leader of the Whigs and a powerful legislator as well as a frustrated presidential candidate in his own right , Henry Clay expected to have substantial influence in the Harrison administration. He ignored his own platform plank of overturning the "spoils" system. Clay attempted to influence Harrison's actions before and during his brief presidency, especially in putting forth his own preferences for Cabinet offices and other presidential appointments. Harrison rebuffed his aggression, saying "Mr.
Clay, you forget that I am the President. Crittenden to the post of Attorney General. Despite this, the dispute continued until the President's death. Clay was not the only one who hoped to benefit from Harrison's election. Hordes of office applicants came to the White House , which was then open to all who wanted a meeting with the president.
Most of Harrison's business during his month-long presidency involved extensive social obligations—an inevitable part of his high position and arrival in Washington—and receiving visitors at the White House. They awaited him at all hours and filled the Executive Mansion.
The new 27th Congress had convened an extraordinary session for the purpose of confirming Harrison's cabinet and other important nominees, since a number of them arrived after Congress' March 15 adjournment; however, John Tyler would ultimately be forced to renominate many of Harrison's selections. Harrison took his pledge to reform executive appointments seriously, visiting each of the six executive departments to observe its operations and issuing through Webster an order to all departments that electioneering by employees would henceforth be considered grounds for dismissal.
As he had with Clay, Harrison resisted pressure from other Whigs over partisan patronage. When a group arrived in his office on March 16 to demand the removal of all Democrats from any appointed office, Harrison proclaimed, "So help me God, I will resign my office before I can be guilty of such an iniquity! Harrison's only official act of consequence was to call Congress into a special session. Henry Clay and he had disagreed over the necessity of such a session, and when on March 11 Harrison's cabinet proved evenly divided, the president vetoed the idea.
When Clay pressed Harrison on the special session on March 13, the president rebuffed his counsel and told him not to visit the White House again, but to address him only in writing. The session was scheduled to begin on May On March 26, , Harrison became ill with a cold —according to the prevailing medical misconception of that time, his illness was believed to be caused by the bad weather at his inauguration, but the illness did not arise until more than three weeks afterwards.
His extremely busy social schedule also made rest time scarce. Harrison's doctors tried several cures, such as applying opium , castor oil , leeches , and Virginia snakeweed , but the treatments only made Harrison worse and he became delirious. He died nine days after becoming ill,  at Harrison's doctor, Thomas Miller, diagnosed Harrison's cause of death as "pneumonia of the lower lobe of the right lung". Miller's notes and records of the White House water supply being downstream of public sewage, concluded that he likely died of septic shock due to enteric fever.
Harrison became the first United States president to die in office. His last words were to his doctor, but they were assumed to be directed at Vice President Tyler: I wish them carried out. I ask nothing more. The President's body was borne through Washington. Solomon Northup gave an account of the procession in Twelve Years a Slave: The next day there was a great pageant in Washington. The roar of cannon and the tolling of bells filled the air, while many houses were shrouded with crape, and the streets were black with people.
As the day advanced, the procession made its appearance, coming slowly through the Avenue, carriage after carriage, in long succession, while thousands upon thousands followed on foot—all moving to the sound of melancholy music. They were bearing the dead body of Harrison to the grave I remember distinctly how the window glass would break and rattle to the ground, after each report of the cannon they were firing in the burial ground. Harrison's death was a disappointment to Whigs, who hoped to pass a revenue tariff and enact measures to support Henry Clay's American system.
John Tyler, Harrison's successor and a former Democrat, abandoned the Whig agenda, effectively cutting himself off from the party. Due to the death of Harrison, three presidents served within a single calendar year Martin Van Buren , Harrison, Tyler , which has occurred only one other time when Rutherford B. Hayes , James A. Garfield and Chester A. Arthur served in Harrison's death revealed the flaws in the U. Constitution's clauses on presidential succession. The Constitution did not stipulate whether the vice president could serve the remainder of the president's term, until the next election, or if emergency elections should be held.
Harrison's cabinet insisted that Tyler was "Vice President acting as President". After the cabinet consulted with the Chief Justice Roger Taney , they decided that if Tyler took the presidential Oath of Office , he would assume the office of president. Tyler obliged and was sworn into office on April 6, Congress convened in May, and after a short period of debate in both houses, it passed a resolution that confirmed Tyler as president for the remainder of Harrison's term.
Once established, this precedent of presidential succession remained in effect until the Twenty-fifth Amendment was ratified in ,   following the assassination of John F. Kennedy and the succession of Lyndon B. Johnson to the presidency in Don't see what you're looking for? There was a problem completing your request. Please try your search again later. View shipping rates and policies ASIN: Amazon Best Sellers Rank: If you are a seller for this product, would you like to suggest updates through seller support? Related Video Shorts 0 Upload your video. See questions and answers. Customer reviews There are no customer reviews yet.
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