Battle of Horseshoe Bend
March 27, 1814, Horseshoe Bend (near Dadeville, Alabama), Alabama (Mississippi Territory)
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The Battle of Horseshoe Bend was fought in central Alabama (Mississippi Territory) . On March 27, American forces and Indian allies under Brig. Gen. Andrew Jackson defeated the Creek Indians.
At 10:30 A.M., Jackson began an artillery barrage, which caused little damage. Coffee's Cherokees began crossing the river and fighting the Red Sticks from the rear. Jackson ordered an all-out bayonet charge. The infantry charged the barricade surrounding the camp and quickly overwhelmed it. The battle quickly became a rout, and roughly 550 Red Sticks were killed on the field while many of the rest were killed trying to cross the river. Chief Menawa was severely wounded but survived to lead only about 200 of the origional 1,000 warriors across the river and into safety in Florida.
Although having nothing to do with the British or Canadians, the battle is still considered part of the War of 1812. More specifically it was the major battle of the Creek War in which Jackson sought to clear Alabama for settlement.
Jackson was in command of an army of West Tennessee militia which he had turned into a well trained fighting force. To add to these militia units was the 39th U.S. Infantry and about 600 Cherokee and Lower Creek Indians fighting against the Red Stick Creek Indians. After leaving Fort Williams in the spring of 1814, Jackson's army cut its way through the forest to within 6 miles of the Chief Menawa's Red Stick camp near a bend in the Tallapoosa River called Horseshoe Bend in central Alabama. Jackson sent Gen. John Coffee with the mounted infantry and the Indian allies south across the river to surround the camp, while Jackson stayed with the rest of the 2,000 infantry north of the camp.
The Battle of Horseshoe Bend was a crushing defeat for the Red Stick Creek. Hostile Creeks held out against the U.S. for another few months. The Treaty of Fort Jackson, signed April 9, 1814, ceded 23 million acres of Creek land in Alabama and Georgia to the United States government.
This victory along with the Battle of New Orleans gave Jackson the popularity to win election as President of the United States.
Sam Houston (the future Governor of Tennessee and Texas) served as a third lieutenant in Jackson's army. He was the first soldier to make it over the log barricade alive, and received a wound from a Creek arrow that troubled him the rest of his life.