On this day in history, March 27, 1814, the Upper Creek Indians suffered a decisive loss at the Battle of Horseshoe Bend, or Tohopeka to the Creek Indians. This is probably not a battle you learned about in school but it was immensely significant. It represented the single largest loss of Indian life in any single engagement with U.S. forces, some 800 dead. The battle effectively created the state of Alabama through the Treaty of Fort Jackson. In that treaty, the Creek were “forced to cede 23 million acres … —half of central Alabama and part of southern Georgia,” according to Wikipedia. The battle also propelled Andrew Jackson into national prominence, and the spotlight followed him all the way to the White House.
A description by the National Park Services said the Battle of Horseshoe Bend could best be described as a slaughter. Forces led by Andrew Jackson of the Tennessee militia outnumbered the Creek fighters by about three to one. Jackson’s forces also had the advantage of two small cannons and Native American allies. Continue reading