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Battle of Thames


On October 5, 1813, at the Battle of Thames, American forces cross into Canada across Lake Erie after the American victory on the lake. British forces, under General Proctor, are forced to withdraw, with American forces following closely. The American forces catch up with the British and Indians, and decisively defeat them. Tecumseh, the Indian chief, is killed in the battle.


In the wake of Perry’s victory on the Lake Erie the path was open for new American assault on Canada. General William Henry called on Kentucky governor Issaac Shelby to take to the field with the Kentucky Militia. 3,000 Kentuckians headed the call. In late September the Americans set off and recaptured Detroit. The British commander General Proctor knew that now that the Americans controlled Lake Erie his position was untenable. Proctor led his troops including his Indian troops commanded by the Indian chief Tecumseh on a retreat.

50 miles to the east of Detroit he made a stand. The location was along the Thames River and Proctor picked a location where his lines were long. When American scouts reported that the British lines extremely thin, Harrison decided on a daring strategy, a cavalry assault by the Kentucky troops directly on the British lines. The British were not prepared for that type of assault and the first wave of horseman quickly rode through the British lines, and then turned on the British from the rear, with the second line surrounding them from the front most of the British troops quickly surrendered. The American forces then went on to defeat the Indians allies; killing most of them include Tecumseh.


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