When Kentucky Governor Isaac Shelby was tasked with raising troops for a war with the British and the Indians, Kentuckians responded with fervor. William Greathouse was one of more than 3,500 Kentuckians who answered Shelby’s call to arms in 1813. Just a teenager, Greathouse joined the troops because he strongly opposed the British occupation and the Indian Confederacy led by Chief Tecumseh. Greathouse mustered in on August 24, 1813 in Nelson County, joining Colonel Renick’s 5th Kentucky Regiment.
Greathouse took part in the Thames Campaign, marching into Canada to drive out the British forces who were assisted by Chief Tecumseh. He took part in the Battle of the Thames, considered the turning point of the war. In a battle that lasted less than an hour, the American troops, the majority of whom were from Kentucky, destroyed the Indian Confederacy and drove the British occupants out of Canada.
With great humor and pride in his home state of Kentucky, Private Greathouse’s story not only tells of his personal contributions to American history, but also explains Kentucky’s vital role in America’s “Second War for Independence.”
The Locust Grove Afternoon Lecture Series is held the first Wednesday of each month. Dessert and coffee are served at 1:00 pm with the lecture immediately following at 1:15 PM. Admission is $5, $3 for Friends of Historic Locust Grove. Reservations are not required.