Friday, August 14, 2009

The "battle" of Fort Dearborn

Having written about the 1812 "incident" at Fort Dearborn in my book, I was surprised by the decision to rename the event a "battle" after it had been called a "massacre" all these years. I'm surprised because to me (as Dennis Byrne says in his article, link below), a "battle" involves two sides of combatants pitted against each other.

What happened just outside Fort Dearborn in 1812 involved the slaughter of innocent, unarmed women and children, along with armed Native American warriors and soldiers. The whites were leaving the fort because they could no longer be certain of receiving provisions. They were on their way to another fort, escorted by the Native Americans who then attacked them.

It seems that the word "battle" is used in history books to describe incidents where Native American women and children were slaughtered by whites. So perhaps renaming the Fort Dearborn Massacre is justified. Or perhaps we need to revise the history books. The truth is, both whites and Native Americans did slaughter the innocent. What are we really trying to accomplish with this name change?

I encourage you to read the articles and commentary in the Chicago Tribune before commenting.

Massacre? What Massacre?

The outrageous PC whitewashing of the Fort Dearborn Massacre - Dennis Byrne's Barbershop

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