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after removed to Nashville, Tennessee, where he entered on an extensive and profitable practice. He was appointed to the office of attorney-general, which he held for several years.
Even at this early period of his life, he manifested the military genius that in after years gave him an elevated rank among the defenders of his country. In the year 1796, he was appointed a member of the Convention for framing a state constitution, and the same year elected a member of the House of Representatives in Congress. The next year, he was elected to the Senate; but, finding his situation disagreeable, he resigned his seat, and was chosen to succeed General Conway in the command of the militia of Tennessee.
In 1812, he raised a corps of two thousand five hundred volunteers, joined the United States army, and was ordered to Natchez, Mississippi, a distance of about six hundred miles. · After a long and toilsome march through the forest, he reached his destination, encamped his army on an elevated position, and awaited further orders. The danger of invasion having in some degree subsided, he received orders from the secretary of war to disband his trocps, and transfer his stores to General Wilkinson. An order So manifestly unjust he hesitated not to disobey. His army, with tears in their eyes, implored him not to leave them to the alternative of enlisting in the United States army, or of begging their way to their homes in Tennesseé. Gener il Wilkinson had given orders for his officers to enlist men from Jackson's division ; but, the latter having threatened to punish any man that should dare to enter his camp with such a design, the attempt was abandoned. Having made the necessary preparations, he commenced his march homeward: The roads were almost impassable from the recent rains, and the swamps and streams which they were compelled to cross were full. But the spirits and fortitude of their general inspired the soldiers with confidence in hiin and in themselves, and his participation in their severest trials— he having given up his horses for the transportation of the sick — repressed every inclination to murmur. His whole division at length arrived at the place of their departure, and were disbanded.
About this time, the bold Tecumseh, and his crafty brother, the prophet, were busily engaged in the execution of a scheme, which would have been worthy of the admiration and respect even of those who were their destined victims, had not the traces of British influence been manifest in all their operations. Their design contemplated the array in deadly hostility of all the Indians on our northern and western frontiers, and the massacre, on a day appointed, of all the frontier inhabitants. To effect their design, it was necessary to arouse all the fierce and vindictive passions of the savages. This was without difficulty effected; but it was impossible to restrain them till the appointed time. Parties of the northern tribes were continually making depredations on the frontiers. At Fort Mimms, Mississippi, about one hundred and fifty men, with a large number of women and children, were assembled. The Indians, to the number of six or seven hundred, carried the fort by assault, and put to death about three hun
When news of this outrage arrived in Tennessee, the whole state was ready to march and avenge its slaughtered, hapless children. An expedition into the heart of the Creek country was immediately planned. Volunteers were called into the field, at whose head General Jackson was placed, though he was laboring under the effects of a broken limb. He promptly assumed the command, issued the necessary camp orders, and proceeded to obtain the requisite supplies. In effecting this purpose, he met with unexpected difficulties : the contractors found themselves unable to fulfil their engagements, and Jackson was compelled to have recourse to other means of supply; but, after all his exertions, he found his army but ill provided with the stores necessary to carry on a vigorous campaign.
Learning from the Indian runners, whom he employed to obtain information, that the enemy were collected in force on the south side of the River Coosa, General Jackson detached General Coffee, with nine hundred men, to attack them. On their arrival in the vicinity of the enemy, two companies were sent forward to draw them from their camp, who, after a few shots, commenced a re
treat, followed by the Indians, yelling and fighting as they came on : on reaching the main body of the Americans, they were received with a tremendous discharge of musketry, and, fighting desperately, and contesting the ground inch by inch, were driven back to their encanipment, which was taken, the enemy completely routed, and a large number of them were killed or taken prisoners. eral months General Jackson continued to aitack the enemy, having to contend with the machinations of jealous rivals, and with the discontents of his soldiers, arising from an almosť entire destitution of provisions."
Seated one day at the root of a tree, making a repast en acorns, the general saw.a soldier approach, who complained that he was nearly starved, and was destitute of the means of procuring any food.. “I make it a point," said the general, “ never to turn away a hungry man, when it is in my power to relieve him, and will most cheerfully divide with you whatever I have,” at the same time offering him a handful of acorns.
The soldier returned to his company, and reported that the general lived on acorns, and that they ought no more to complain.
The militia, however, who had little experience in the sufferings of the soldier's life, were the first to revolt and abandon the camp. The general ordered the volunteers, who still remained faithful, to form in front of the muti. neers, and prevent their farther progress. The militia, fearful of the result if they persisted, yielded and returned to their camp. The next day, the general found the volunteers in the condition of the militia the day before. But a short time elapsed before the militia were drawn up in arms to reduce to obedience the very men who had a few hours before conferred on them a similar benefit; the volunteers returned, mạch mortified, to their duty. But the discontent was not yet arrested. General Jackson had promised to accompany them in their departure, unless relief should arrive in two days. The time having elapsed without the expected arrival, the militia claimed the fulfilment of his pledge; he began, accordingly, to make preparations for their departure. : They had marched but a few miles before they met a hundred and fifty beeves, and the
general determined to return to the post they had just left ; the troos rufused obedience, and began to move off in a body. Alone, surrounded by discontented and angry men, deprived of the use of his leit-arm, he met the crisis with a mind th it was never known to quail in the presence of danger; he seized a musket, and, resting it on the neck of his horse, cast himself in front of the column, threatening to shoot the first man that attempted to advance. Here he was found by Major Reid and General Coffee, who awaited the result by his side.
The whole coluinn, for several minutes, preserved a sullen silence, wbile two companies, that had remained faithful, formed behind the general, with orders to fire as soon as he should give the example. The contagion of fear was soon communicated froin one to the other, and one by one the whole coluinn turned and marched back.
The ensuing campaign began under the same disadvantages that had nearly defeated the former. General Jackson determined no longer to submit to the delay of contractors, sent agents to the nearest setilements to make purchases, at any price, on the credit of the contractors, which immediately brought them to terms, and insured a plentiful supply during the rest of the campaign. After several successive defeats, having even been driven from the Hickory Ground, which, from its sacred character, they believed would never be pressed by the foot of a white man, the Indians sued for and obtained peace. On the resignation of Gener 11 Harrison, General Jackson received the appointment of major-general in the army of the Unised Stites. His attention was immediately directed to the conduct of the Spunish authorities of Florida, where he leurned that three hundred English soldiers had been suffered to land, and that they were engaged in exciting the Indians to hostilities.
He demanded of the Spanish governor of Pensacola the observance of his neitrality. An acrimonious correspondence ensued between them, which had no other result than to inflime stilt more the indignation of General Jackson. Colonel Nichols, a British oficer, now arrived at Pens:coli, with a small squadron, and took his head-quarters with Governor Maurequez. He issued a proclamation to
the southern inhabitants of the United States, informing them of his desire of delivering them from bondage, promising them relief and protection, and pledging the honor of a British officer, that he would perform all he had promised. He awaited for a short time the effect of his proclamation, and then advanced to the attack of Fort Bowyer, from which he was driven with the loss of a ship of war and one eye.
General Jackson now. prepared to take possession of Pensacola, intending to hold possession of its forts and arsenals until Spain could send thither a sufficient force to preserve her neutrality. He first sent a flag of truce, which was fired on. He then sent a letter to the
governor by a Spanjard, who had been taken prisoner. T'he governor rejected his proposals, and General Jackson attacked the town, which in a short time surrendered. The forts were blown up, and the British retired to their shipping in the bay.
Every movement of the enemy now proved to General Jackson, that New Orleans was their principal object. He therefore urged the governors of the different Southern States to send in, with all speed, men and supplies, with which he determined to defend the city or perish in the attempt. His call was not neglected. The governors of Tennessee and Kentucky made great exertions to comply with the demands of Jackson; and, although the troops thus obtained did not increase his forces sufficiently to banish his fears as to the result, General Jackson never despaired of being able to meet the enemy at all points. He now stationed a force at every inlet or creek, where he believed there was the smallest chance for the enemy to approach. The American Aotilla, of five gun-boats and two hundred and eighty-two men, was captured by that of the enemy, consisting of forty-three boats and twelve hundred men. The next day, Mr. Shields, purser of the navy, with Dr. Murrell, was despatched with a flag of truce to Cat Island, to relieve the wounded Americans who were there prisoners. The British admiral, believing their visit to have been intended for the purpose of observation, detained them, and endeavored to leurn from them the situation and number of the forces of General Jackson.