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Biography: William Henry Harrison Essay

1161 words - 5 pages

William Henry Harrison, who was nicknamed “Old Tippecanoe” was the ninth president of the United States and was born on February 9, 1773 in Charles City County, Virginia. He attended Hampden Sydney College in 1787 where he studied history and then later on joined his brother to learn medicine in Richmond, Virginia in 1790. That same year he switched his interest and joined the First Infantry of the Regular Army in 1791. Later he headed northwest where he spent much of his life.
William Henry Harrison was born in the Berkeley Plantation where he grew up and worked as a planter. Out of four girls and three boys, including him, he was the youngest son of Benjamin Harrison V, one of the signers of the Declaration of Independence, and Elizabeth Bassett Harrison. His family had a history in politics for five generations who served in the office. William was sent to a grammar school by Berkley in his childhood.
As he grew up William decided to become a doctor and attended an academy in Southampton County. Later he dropped out of Hampden Sydney College as he was not able to afford it. In 1790 he joined his brother in Richmond where he studied medicine. Later on he headed towards Philadelphia where he went for medical study under Dr. Benjamin Rush who was considered the Father of American Psychiatry. When his father, Benjamin, died on April 24th, 1791, William left Philadelphia and joined the United States First Infantry of the regular army (Garraty).
William served in the Northwest Territories under General Anthony Wayne who was in a struggle against the Northwest Indian Confederation on the encroachment of white settlers. He enjoyed the reputation that the white settlers had for him as an Indian Fighter. On August 20th, 1794 the campaign ended in the Battle of Fallen Timbers where it is now known as Maumee, Ohio. William witnessed and signed the Treaty of Greenville in 1795 and led him to being promoted to captain and commander of Fort Washington where he met his wife Anne Symmes. On November 25th he married Anne Tuthill Symmes whose father objected to the match and ended up getting married in secret. Together they had ten children, six sons and four daughters (Garraty).
Harrison then applied for secretary of the Northwest Territory. On July 6th, 1798, President John Adams appointed Harrison secretary of the Northwest Territories. On October 3rd 1799, Harrison was elected by the territories first legislature to be its delegate to the U.S, Congress. Harrison was made chairman while in congress to revise the public land laws. The Land Act of 1800 was reported by the committee in which Harrison divided the Northwest Territory into two territories, Indiana and Ohio which later on included; Illinois, Michigan, and Wisconsin.
On May 12th, 1800, President John Adams appointed Harrison governor of Indiana holding all non-judicial powers. As governor, Harrison negotiated with the Native Americans and deprived the Indians of their lands for very little money...

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