BLOCK-HOUSES BUILT ON MISSISSIPPI.
Those who wish to see a fuller account, are referred to the authorities below, many of which are easily accessible.*
The rule of the British over the lower peninsula of Michigan, which had lasted from August, 1812, to October, 1813, was now at an end, and the American eagle again floated over the territory and the lakes in the majestic consciousness of his power. This for the present closes the events of the war in the North-West, which, during the year under consideration, were fraught with interest, and embraced some of the most important incidents in the history of the Union.
Yet there was another section of country that now deserves attention. This is the region of the Upper Mississippi, above its juncture with the Ohio river, which was then called the "Far West," and which, if its wild prairies, noble waters and majestic forests were indeed as yet, little more than a wilderness almost unreclaimed the haunts of wild animals and wilder savages was yet even then resounding with the woodsman's axe, that, like a prophet's voice, proclaimed its future destiny, of speedily rising into significance and importance, till now it is the "Far West" no longer, but is becoming more and more nearly the center of civilization in our Union.
The year 1813 opened with gloomy prospects for these far-off and exposed territories. There were steps taken to protect the feeble settlements about the juncture of the three great rivers, (the Mississippi, the Missouri and Illinois,) from the depredations of the savages. The following items, taken from the Missouri Gazette, of St. Louis, which was the first newspaper ever published west of the Mississippi, will show what these were :
"We have now nearly finished twenty-two family forts, (stations,) extending from the Mississippi, nearly opposite Bellefon-taine, (mouth of the Missouri,) to the Kaskaskia river, a distance of about seventy-five miles. Between each fort, spies are to pass and repass daily, and communicate throughout the whole line, which will he extended to the United States Saline, and from thence to the mouth of the Ohio.
"Bangers and mounted militia, to the amount of five hundred men, constantly scour the country from twenty to fifty miles in advance of our settlements, so that we feel perfectly easy as to an
* Nilcs' Register, Dawson's Life of Harrison, Drake's Tecumthe, &c.