Battle of Lake Erie
Commodore Oliver Hazard Perry’s victory over the British in the Battle of Lake Erie is among the most pivotal battles of the war. Fought just off the coast of Ohio, nine US ships captured and defeated six British ships. This victory secured American control of the lake and cut off British supply lines. It also forced the British to abandon Detroit and paved the way for General Harrison's attack on the British and Indian forces at the Battle of the Thames. For a more detailed account, please click here.
Perry's Victory and International Peace Memorial at Put-in-Bay on South Bass Island commemorates Oliver Hazard Perry's victory over the British in the Battle of Lake Erie -- among the most significant battles of the war to take place in Ohio. From an observation deck atop the 352-foot tall monument you can appreciate the strategic location of Ohio's Lake Erie Islands between the U.S. and Canada and see the spot where this decisive naval battle played out. In the nearby visitors center you can learn more about the story of the Battle of Lake Erie. Get details on visiting Perry's Victory and International Peace Memorial here.
Located along the Maumee River, Fort Meigs was built by General William Henry Harrison to provide supply storage and a planning point for invasion of Canada. Fort Meigs was the largest wooden-wall barricade in North America.
There were two attempts to capture Fort Meigs. The first siege, headed by General Henry Proctor and Chief Tecumseh, was thwarted when a troop of Kentucky militia men arrived to reinforce Fort Megs. The second siege, made two months later by the British and Indians, was a failed attempt to lure the Americans out of the fort by staging a mock battle. When the attempt failed, the enemy retreated. These two victories marked a turning point in the war, ushering in a series of American victories and helping to secure the Great Lakes in American control. For further details, please visit fortmeigs.org
Today, Fort Meigs in Perrysburg (a community named for Oliver Hazard Perry, the general who defeated the British in the Battle of Lake Erie) is a War of 1812 battlefield with a reconstructed 1813 fort where you can see firsthand what life was like for soldiers and citizens during the war. In the adjacent visitors’ center and museum you'll find War of 1812 artifacts and exhibits about Ohio's role in the war. Learn more at fortmeigs.org/museum/.
The British moved on to Fort Stephenson following their defeat at Fort Meigs. Located on the Sandusky River, the fort was commanded by George Croghan and was considered, by General William Henry Harrison too difficult to defend. Harrison urged Croghan to abandon the fort but Croghan refused. Before the issue could be resolved, British forces attacked the fort. Despite a big discrepancy in numbers (with considerable favor placed on the British troops) the Americans were successful in holding off the British assault. For a more detailed account, please click here.
On the lawn of Birchard Public Library at 423 Croghan St. in downtown Fremont, several monuments and markers identify the site of the Battle of Fort Stephenson.
William Henry Harrison Tomb
At the Harrison Tomb in North Bend near Cincinnati you can see the final resting place of William Henry Harrison, commander of the Army of the Northwest during the War of 1812, who went on to become ninth president of the United States. Outdoor displays tell the story of Harrison and a 60-foot tall marble memorial completed in 1922 marks the site of his tomb. For more details, click here.
More Ohio Sites and Markers
More than 90 of the familiar brown-and-gold Ohio Historical Markers commemorate people, places and events associated with the War of 1812. For the full list, visit remarkableohio.org and search on "War of 1812," where you can also map War of 1812 markers in Ohio.