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Sieges of Fort Meigs

From Ohio History Central

General William Henry Harrison ordered his men to build Fort Meigs on the southern bank of the Maumee River in February 1813. This fort was to serve as a supply depot and a staging area for the invasion of Canada during the War of 1812. Fort Meigs was a large fort. Walls made of earth and pointed logs enclosed nearly ten acres. The fort had seven blockhouses and approximately seventy-five cannons.

An army of British soldiers and American Indians forces attacked the fort in April 1813. British cannons bombarded the fort, and American Indians ambushed American soldiers when they came outside. The American troops withstood the siege, and the British withdrew in early May. The American Indians persuaded the British to attack the fort again in July. Once again, the American defenders were victorious.

The defense of Fort Meigs was an important victory for the Americans. It marked the beginning of the end for the British in the Northwest Territory. England's failure to drive the Americans from the region convinced Harrison to go on the offensive. In October 1813, the Battle of the Thames occurred. Harrison defeated a joint English and American Indian army led by Tecumseh and General Henry Procter at the Battle of the Thames in Canada. British occupation of much of the American Northwest ended as a result, and Tecumseh, who died in the battle, failed to attain his dream of an Indian confederation.

See Also


  1. Hurt, R. Douglas. The Ohio Frontier: Crucible of the Old Northwest, 1720-1830. Bloomington, IN: Indiana University Press, 1996.