(March 27, 2023: Revision of original post of March 15, 2014. Video created and directed by Colin Davis.)
Andrew Jackson, the seventh president of the United States, was born on March 15, 1767.
His birthplace was a cabin on the border of both South and North Carolina (the precise location is uncertain).
When this was last posted, he had fallen from favor and was going to be moved to the back side of the $20 in favor of Harriet Tubman. That decision was shelved by the previous administration and is back on track under the Biden administration.
In his day and ever since, Andrew Jackson provoked high emotions and sharp opinions. Thomas Jefferson once called him, “A dangerous man.”
His predecessor as president, John Quincy Adams, a bitter political rival, said Jackson was,
“A barbarian who could not even write a sentence of grammar and could hardly spell his own name.”
His place and reputation as an Indian fighter began with a somewhat overlooked fight against the Creek nation led by a half-Creek, half-Scot warrior named William Weatherford, or Red Eagle following an attack on an outpost known as Fort Mims north of Mobile, Alabama.
The video above offers a quick overview of Weatherford’s war with Jackson that ultimately led the demise of the Creek nation.Like Pearl Harbor or 9/11, it was an event that shocked the nation. Soon, Red Eagle and his Creek warriors were at war with Andrew Jackson, the Nashville lawyer turned politician, who had no love for the British or Native Americans.
On March 27, 1814, Jackson’s troops defeated Red Eagle and his Creek warriors, killing more than 800 Natives–women, children, and the elderly as well as warriors. Jackson’s soldiers cut off the noses of the dead to tally their numbers. Other soldiers cut off strips of skin to make reins for their horses. (A Nation Rising, page 66-68)
On August 9, 1814, Major General Andrew Jackson signed the Treaty of Fort Jackson ending the Creek War. The agreement provided for the surrender of twenty-three million acres of Creek land to the United States. This vast territory encompassed more than half of present-day Alabama and part of southern Georgia.
The complete story of the Red Creek War is told in my book A Nation Rising.
Andrew Jackson died on June 8, 1845. He was surrounded by many of the household servants he had enslaved. He told them:
“I want all to prepare to meet me in heaven….Christ has no respect to color.”
The story of one of those people, Alfred Jackson, is told in my recent book, In the Shadow of Liberty. Alfred Jackson is buried in the garden at the Hermitage, near Andrew Jackson’s gravesite.
You can also read more about William Weatherford, Andrew Jackson, and Jackson’s role in American history in A NATION RISING. Andrew Jackson’s life and presidency are also covered in Don’t Know Much About® the American Presidents.