The Portraits

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William Henry Harrison

Artist
Rembrandt Peale, 22 Feb 1778 - 3 Oct 1860
Sitter
William Henry Harrison, 9 Feb 1773 - 4 Apr 1841
Date
c. 1813
Type
Painting
Medium
Oil on canvas
Dimensions
Stretcher: 72.4 x 60.3 x 2.5cm (28 1/2 x 23 3/4 x 1")
Frame: 97.8 x 83.8 x 10.2cm (38 1/2 x 33 x 4")
Credit Line
National Portrait Gallery, Smithsonian Institution; gift of Mrs. Herbert Lee Pratt, Jr.
Object number
NPG.75.27
Exhibition Label
Born Berkeley, Charles County, Virginia
The first battle of the War of 1812 actually occurred in 1811, with the Battle of Tippecanoe in the Indiana wilderness. As governor of the territory, William Henry Harrison faced increased resistance from Indian tribes forced from their homes by new settlers. Harrison met with Shawnee warrior chief Tecumseh at a tense council that nearly ended in violence and led in part to Tecumseh’s alliance with the British during the subsequent war. With tensions rising, Tecumseh’s brother Tenskwatawa (the Prophet) attacked Harrison’s forces near Tippecanoe. The surprise strike resulted in heavy casualties for Harrison; however, the Indians left the field and Harrison then destroyed Tecumseh’s stronghold, Prophet’s Town, claiming the victory. A year later, Harrison commanded the American forces at the Battle of the Thames, where Tecumseh was killed. In 1840 the slogan “Tippecanoe and Tyler too!” propelled Harrison to the presidency.
Data Source
National Portrait Gallery
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National Portrait Gallery Collection
Exhibition
American Origins
On View
NPG, East Gallery 142