The United States suffered what became known as a “National Calamity” at the hands of the Native Nation Confederation and their British-Canadian allies in the January 1813 Battles of the River Raisin. These Battles resulted in the United States’ greatest defeat of the war, with only 33 of a nearly 1,000-man army escaping capture or death. The casualties of the River Raisin accounted for 15% of the total casualties for the entire war.
The Battlefield’s hallowed grounds remain the site of Michigan’s largest and bloodiest clash, and the location of the most American POWs ever taken by a foreign power on U.S. soil. The United States’ first wartime rally cry “Remember the Raisin” stirred Americans to retake the Michigan Territory, avenging the losses at the River Raisin.
Advocates used the River Raisin events as a reason for the forced removal of Native Nations west of the Mississippi, opening Native land for westward expansion. Now, over 200 years later in present day Monroe, these momentous events are forever memorialized at the River Raisin National Battlefield Park.
The River Raisin National Battlefield Park is dedicated to examining the War of 1812 from multiple perspectives and examining the aftermath resulting in the forced removal, relocation and assimilation of Native Nations. The ramification and consequences of the War of 1812’s “Untold Story” is rarely taught in classrooms. The Battlefield Foundation is working hard to correct this issue, offering teacher workshops and curriculum development.
We invite you join us on a “Journey Towards Understanding” the history you were not supposed to know.