Expedition Natchez 1813
On June 18, 1812 the United States declared war on Great Britain.
In the same year President James Madison called upon Tennessee governor Willie Blount to send 1500 troops to defend "The Lower country." Over 2,000 volunteered. From thereafter Tennessee became known as the "Volunteer State."
In December General Andrew Jackson led an army of Tennessee volunteers to Natchez, Mississippi Territory. The cavalry rode along the old Natchez Trace. The infantry floated down the Cumberland, Ohio, and Mississippi River on flatboats.
Their goal: defense of the lower Mississippi region.
In mid February 1813 the two columns rendezvoused in Natchez expecting a hero's welcome. Clothing was brushed and repaired, arms burnished, faces shaved and hair combed or powdered.
Instead of martial glory, these Sons of Mars found their services soundly rejected through the machinations of General James Wilkinson and the War Department under John Armstrong. Jackson was ordered to dismiss his men in the field without any provisions to return them home.
With no supplies and no support from the country they sought to serve, Jackson marched his command the 450 miles back up the Trace sharing in the privations and hardships of his men. He was, as they observed, "As tough as Old Hickory." The name stuck.
The 7th United States Infantry Living History Association is recreating this historic journey and ending at The Hermitage April 21st!
Schedule of Events:
9 - 9:20 AM Period church Service at Hermitage Church delivered by Frank Kirtley, an ordained minister and a member of Steve Abolt's 7th US infantry
10:00 AM Wreath-laying at Andrew Jackson's Tomb