Sorry for the absence, folks. I’ve been pretty busy with classes, so we’ve got some catching up to do. Here are a few items to amuse and inform:
If you don’t have plans for Memorial Day weekend, then head over to John Sevier’s place. May 25-26 is the annual Statehood Days Living History Weekend at Marble Springs State Historic Site in Knoxville. They’re hosting militia drills, eighteenth-century demonstrations, a display of guns from the War of 1812, and a presentation on veterans of the Battle of King’s Mountain by yours truly. (I think my talk is scheduled for 11:30 on Saturday.)
The Tennessee State Museum’s traveling exhibit on the War of 1812 is now at the East Tennessee Historical Society, and will be in Knoxville through May 19. Looks pretty cool!
The War of 1812 tour is now available on the Kentucky Historical Society’s Explore KY History app. If you haven’t downloaded this thing, let me once again recommend it to you. Most Americans probably associate the War of 1812 with the Chesapeake or the Gulf of Mexico, but Kentucky suffered more casualties in that conflict than all the other states combined.
Gov. Isaac Shelby as painted by Matthew Jouett, from the Kentucky Historical Society’s Hall of Governors via Wikimedia Commons
One of the most notable Kentucky vets was Isaac Shelby, who became the state’s first governor in 1792 and then ran for the same post twenty years later. Shelby didn’t throw his hat into the ring until less than a month before the 1812 gubernatorial election, and he was more than sixty years old.
He won handily anyway, partly because he’d already made a name for himself during the Rev War and Kentuckians were gearing up for another confrontation with England. (Shelby had led a regiment at King’s Mountain; in fact, he was one of the primary architects of the expedition that defeated Ferguson’s Tories.) In the summer of 1813 he took the field himself at the head of 3,500 volunteers who fought at the Battle of the Thames, thus seeing action in both of America’s wars with Britain.
The House of Representatives can now vote to allow the NPS to acquire important Revolutionary War and War of 1812 sites. Drop a line to your representative and tell him or her to support the American Battlefield Protection Program Amendments Act (H.R. 2489). It’ll only take you a few minutes.