Share This Episode
Our American Stories Lee Habeeb Logo

The Heavy-Drinking, Congress-Rejected Spendthrift Who Served America to the Fullest

Our American Stories / Lee Habeeb
The Truth Network Radio
July 25, 2022 3:00 am

The Heavy-Drinking, Congress-Rejected Spendthrift Who Served America to the Fullest

Our American Stories / Lee Habeeb

On-Demand Podcasts NEW!

This broadcaster has 1290 podcast archives available on-demand.

Broadcaster's Links

Keep up-to-date with this broadcaster on social media and their website.

July 25, 2022 3:00 am

On this episode of Our American Stories, Mary Stockwell, author of Unlikely General: "Mad" Anthony Wayne and the Battle for America tells the story of "Mad" Anthony Wayne and why he is remembered.

Support the show (

See for privacy information.


INTRO MUSIC Have you ever heard of Matt Anthony Wayne before? Fort Wayne is named after him. Wayne County, where Detroit is located, is too. And there's a bridge bearing his name in Toledo, Ohio. But he's a lot more than just his namesake. Here's Dr. Mary Stockwell, author of Unlikely General, Matt Anthony Wayne and the Battle for America, with why that is.

I can tell you my own experience. When I would tell people, I'm writing a book about Anthony Wayne, and they would say, Why? Why are you bothering? He was mad. He was a mad man. And his name is everywhere out here. We don't just have a bridge about Anthony Wayne.

We have Anthony Wayne vet clinics and Anthony Wayne plumbing and Anthony Wayne roofing and all kinds of things. But in the mind of most people, I started to ask them, what do you think about him? And they would say, Well, he was this wild madman and he loved war and all these things. And that's that's kind of who he is. Within the last century, Wayne has kind of come into the memory of the American Revolution. It's just a wild man who loved to kill the British and then he came out here and he just loved to kill the Indians.

None of this is true. There's no resemblance to the real Anthony Wayne. He was born on New Year's Day, 1745, just outside of Philadelphia. He was very wealthy, might have been one of the wealthiest young men who would participate in the revolution. His father trained him to be a lawyer, but Wayne wanted to be a soldier. And his father said, We're in the British Empire. You're a young colonial.

You're never going to make it in the British Army. But he had a vivid imagination. And from the time he was little, he was swept up in stories of warfare, the glory of it all.

Leading men in battle. He would later write as he was fighting the revolution. Sometimes he would look ahead and he would say, I can see myself on horseback and I'm riding into Philadelphia and we've won a great battle.

And the laurels are on me the way they were on Caesar and the golden light is upon me. He loved that. He loved the camaraderie of being with his fellow men. He loved serving George Washington.

But the dream was glory. And in his imagination, it all seemed so wonderful and so beautiful. You have to remember, too, that if a young boy was well educated in revolutionary times or pre-revolutionary times, he would have learned Latin. And to learn Latin, you would have read the great writers in Latin, ancient Romans. One of the greatest writers was Julius Caesar. So he read all his commentaries.

He knew every battle. And in his imagination, he ran it almost like a movie. Someday I'll be a part of this glorious enterprise and to think I'll win fame and fortune, I'll go down in the annals of my nation. But his father got him a job as a surveyor.

He said, I think if he can get out in the world and survey land, that will maybe get some of this energy off of him. What happens, though, is the American Revolution starts to get underway and he joins the revolutionary cause. He becomes a member of the Pennsylvania Assembly, and he's one of the very first people in the country who says it's time to break away from Great Britain. And he says to anyone who will listen to him, either in the Assembly or in all the taverns outside of Philadelphia, he says, we're a de facto republic. We don't have a king. We don't have nobility. We are the people.

We should rule ourselves. He was on fire for the revolution the way Thomas Paine was, the way John Adams was long before the revolution started. And once the Continental Army starts to form this childhood dream, he had to be a soldier. Then finally he realized. And he goes off to George Washington's camp on Long Island in 1776. Again, a very handsome man, beautifully dressed. His father taught him to always look your part. He knew every battle Julius Caesar ever fought.

He bounced into Washington's camp. I am here to serve. I'm here to serve the revolution.

I'm here to serve my nation. But he knew nothing really beyond what he had read in his ancient history books. But when Washington met him, he said, well, he's got one thing at least, and that's enthusiasm. It's interesting, the very first thing George Washington gave him to do, he said, well, this man's a gentleman.

How about you join us in a fox hunt? But very quickly, Wayne was given one assignment after another, and he becomes really better and better at it. The very first thing he was sent to do, he was sent with the American Army to a place called Three Rivers in Canada. Now, this is June 1776, and in this battle of three rivers, the Army is completely defeated. Who leads the retreat?

Anthony Wayne. He leads the retreat of the Army back into New York. And people say about him, he seems to snap to attention immediately once the battle begins. What he remembers, because he writes to his young wife about every battle he's going into, and he tells her, he goes, when I was heading to Three Rivers, the first thing I realized, all that glory and all that wonder of childhood is gone. I could possibly die in this horrible battle.

What am I doing this for? But once the battle begins again, he snapped to attention. So, Washington learned very quickly if he needed somebody to help with a retreat, Wayne just naturally could move an army faster, get it out of danger. And we're listening to Dr. Mary Stockwell tell the story of Mad Anthony Wayne, the unlikely general, and giving, well, a little more depth to the story, well, as Paul Harvey liked to say, the rest of the story of this great man, he was, well, a dandy.

He looked like a gentleman. But something happened to him in battle, and of course he'd thought about it all of his life. He snaps to attention when the battle begins. That could be as kind of thing as you could ever say about anybody, because some people retrench once the battle begins or they hide.

He snaps to attention when the battle begins. More of Mad Anthony Wayne's story here on Our American Stories. Folks, if you love the stories we tell about this great country, and especially the stories of America's rich past, know that all of our stories about American history, from war to innovation, culture, and faith, are brought to us by the great folks at Hillsdale College, a place where students study all the things that are beautiful in life and all the things that are good in life. And if you can't get to Hillsdale, Hillsdale will come to you with their free and terrific online courses. Go to to learn more.

or contact your local agent today. And we're back with Our American Stories and the story of Mad Anthony Wayne. Let's return to Dr. Mary Stockwell. After losing the Battle of Three Rivers, Mad Anthony Wayne would be sent to Fort Ticonderoga and hated every minute of it. He was out of the action, but the action would soon come. He goes on to the Battle of Brandywine.

Now we're in September 1777. Washington calls him back. This is now a frightening time because the British Army is coming to take the city of Philadelphia. So Washington puts all his men along Brandywine Creek to the west trying to stop them there. He puts Wayne right up on the bluff, looking over Brandywine Creek, gives him the artillery.

What's interesting about Wayne at this time, he realizes on the battlefield something's going wrong. He goes to Washington and he said, I don't think we're in the right position. I think the British are not crossing where we think they're crossing. I think they're coming north. They're going to come around Brandywine Creek. They're going to attack us from the rear.

We're going to be surrounded. They had an ability to figure out in the midst of a battle what was happening. George Washington made a terrible mistake. He told Wayne, go back up to that bluff.

The British are crossing where we think they're crossing. Wayne was right. The Continental Army was almost surrounded, almost destroyed, but they got out of there. But despite Washington's mistake at Brandywine Creek, Anthony Wayne remained one of his greatest supporters, even though they had some major differences. George Washington was the kind of person who always controlled his emotions. Anthony Wayne was very enthusiastic, wore his heart on his sleeve.

He had no sense that anybody was greater or lesser than anyone else. He just befriended George Washington and was much warmer to him than probably Washington was to Wayne. Maybe the most wonderful things I discovered was Wayne was Washington's cheerleader. Other people, again, they respected Washington. They kept him at a distance.

Wayne didn't feel that way. He felt they were friends. Before every battle, he would write George Washington a letter saying, you're going to win. You're in a great position. Yes, Caesar did it before you can do it. You can win this battle.

And when it was over and Washington didn't win, he often lost the battle, who would he get a letter from? Anthony Wayne. And Wayne would say to him, we're in a better position than we were before we lost. We will get through this.

You will get better. And he said, I want you to be the next Julius Caesar. He realizes very quickly he's not Julius Caesar. This isn't going to be a war of glorious battles.

This is going to be a war of attrition and staying in the field and keeping the army in the field. And finally, Wayne realizes, well, I was disappointed, maybe up until Valley Forge, that he's not Julius Caesar, but I realize this man that I love and respect so much, my elder brother, is a new kind of leader. He's a political leader. He's a moral leader. He's got to keep the army in the field.

This is what a modern revolution looks like. Wayne's support for Washington would pay off and he would work his way up the ranks in the Continental Army. But the war wasn't all glory for Anthony Wayne. And in fact, it became anything but for him.

He's remembered for three big mistakes that he made. Washington gives him an assignment. He said, in the middle of the night, I want you to attack the baggage train of the British as they head east into Philadelphia. Just get the baggage train.

Wayne gets his men up on the road into Philadelphia in between the Paoli and the Warren Tavern. The people come to him and say, the British know you're here. And he said, no, the British will not do this.

I am not going to listen to farmers and children about where the British are. Well, in the middle of the night, the British did strike. It was called the Paoli Massacre. Many of his men were killed. He got them out of there. He retreated, which he was so good at. But if he had listened and stopped with his dreams and what he thought was going to happen and listened to what was happening to him on the ground, it wouldn't have happened. Then on January 1, 1781, Wayne oversaw the Pennsylvania Line Mutiny, a situation that happened when countless men, tired of war, threw down their weapons and threatened to defect to the British Army.

But it was a third failure that caused the press to apply a nickname to him that had been used by his own men. At a place called Green Spring Plantation, he's convinced, oh, look, there's a baggage train of Cornwallis going back to North Carolina. Well, I'll attack it. That kind of bloodied their nose. He lines his men up and then he realizes, wait a minute, Cornwallis' entire army is still here.

What am I to do? This man who can think so quickly on his feet said for the only time in his battle he couldn't remember what to do because I don't know what to do. I don't think Julius Caesar was ever in this position. So finally he realized at the Battle of Camden, which had happened in South Carolina, the American army had been in a similar situation. They attacked to surprise the enemy and then they retreated quickly.

That's what he did. He attacked, kind of stunned Cornwallis, and then they retreated away from Green Spring Plantation. He lost all his artillery, many of his horses. He lost many of his men. Again, Washington faulted him for that. And this is the first time you see the nickname Mad Antony applied to him in the Northern press.

He had been called mad just because of his terrible temper. He got the nickname because he had a spy, a little Irish spy who would help him and the spy would come and go as he pleased. Well, one night his name was Jemmy, Jemmy the Rover. Antony Wayne's looking for him. Where is Jemmy?

I need information on the British. And Jemmy's gone. When Jemmy comes back to camp that night, they tell him, Antony Wayne's looking for you and he's steaming, he's angry. And this is where the word mad comes from. The Irishman said, ah, I think he's mad. He's mad. The General is mad.

You know, the best that I go off and not confront him, Jemmy was never seen again, even though Wayne told his wife, see if you can find him. That's what the nickname was. But now people say, maybe he's mad, a little bit crazy and reckless on the battlefield. And Wayne would soon start to despair. He goes through an immense transformation in the Revolution. And he gets a record of it in his really beautiful letters. He might start out in 1776, this is all glory, this is all wonderful, this is all fun. But as he watches his men suffer, without clothes, without shoes, without food, without pay, always having to beg the political leaders and the people, the populace for help, he begins to despair over the cause, the American cause. And it begins to wear on him. He's shot before Yorktown. That wound never heals. He becomes sick and he goes into depression.

And his depression, he calls it, it's the blue damsels who come in the night. How can this be happening to us? How can we be a turning point in world history and the people don't support us? One of the most interesting things I discovered are these writings after Yorktown, when the Battle of Yorktown is won, everyone is gloriously happy. I always think of Trumbull's beautiful painting when everybody's lined up at Yorktown, it's so stunningly beautiful. And that's not what happened, that's not what Wayne remembered. Wayne remembered how the British had to walk with the Hessians on this thing called the surrender. They walked out to the surrender field.

You can see it in Yorktown today. Wayne, in the midst of all this jubilation, he never forgot, he looked across the way and there were the French in their silks and satins, they were gorgeous. And he looked at his own men on the other side of the road and he said, we're barefoot. Some of my men couldn't even stand here, they couldn't even cover themselves, their clothes are threadbare. And that set him into despair.

How can we be a nation that doesn't understand what's at stake? And he begged Washington, I'm going home. It suddenly dawned on him, wait a minute, I have a little boy and a little girl, I left them as infants, Margaretta and Isaac, I have to get an education for Isaac in the trade, I've got to make a fine lady out of Margaretta, I've got to get her into school and get her married. And he says, I'm going home, I've had it. And Washington says, no, you're going to Georgia.

You're going to go fight with Nathanael Greene. And in a terrible campaign, 1782 to 1783, that is completely forgotten today, Wayne goes south and he's given a 500-man army and he's told you've got to bring peace to Georgia and make sure the government works and Georgia remains a state. That's where he really sinks into despair.

That's where he writes to his wife who doesn't even write to him anymore. And he says, I didn't say shit of this war trade of blood, I don't want to do this anymore. But he somehow secures Georgia. And you've been listening to Dr. Mary Stockwell tell the story of the unlikely General Mad Anthony Wayne. More of this remarkable story is Soldier's story, a patriot's story, here on Our American Stories. And we're back with Our American Stories and the story of Mad Anthony Wayne brought to us by Mary Stockwell. When we last left off, Wayne had just successfully secured Georgia from the British, and the American Revolution was won. But Wayne could hardly celebrate the victory he'd fought so hard to help secure.

Let's continue with the story. After the war, Wayne was at his lowest point. The British were defeated, he had secured Georgia, and his dreams of an independent United States were made reality. His life was shattered, and so was his marriage. Anthony Wayne was again married when he was very young to a girl named Mary, and he called her Polly. He had two children very quickly, a little girl Margaretta, a little boy Isaac.

They were only about four and two when he goes off to Philadelphia. It appeared to be a happy marriage, but as the war goes on, and he becomes a famous general, women begin to flock to him. And in the beginning, he has flirtations with women, but as time goes on, he has actual romances with women. He falls madly in love with Nathaniel Greene's wife, Catherine Greene. She was a beauty, she had a temperament like him, kind of witty, sarcastic, loved to dance, but also a tendency to despair. He was so close to Catherine Greene, people would tell Nathaniel Greene, this great general, you better watch it, your wife and your best friend, something's going on.

And you'd say, no, no, they're not crossing the line. But she was the love of his life, absolute love of his life. News of this starts to come back to Mrs. Wayne. And for a while, she kind of pushes it aside. These stories can't be true, but a point finally comes when she realizes, I've lost him.

It's the way, say you're a movie star, a rock star, and you go off and you have this adulation, even in the midst of suffering, and you forget your family. The real break for Mrs. Wayne comes at Yorktown. Wayne has come home after so many battles, he says, I'm going to come home, the war is over, I can't do this anymore. And when he goes off to Yorktown, and then he has to go off to Georgia, there's a break there. And she never quite forgives him, and they never quite restore the relationship. But he never stops writing to her. He writes to her like he does to Washington, before every battle, he writes to her after every battle. He doesn't ask her about herself, but it would have driven me nuts if I was Mrs. Wayne.

But he pours out maybe his best writing to this love of his youth. And he tells her about the transformation he's passing through, and that he doesn't like war anymore, he doesn't want glory, and he's losing so much. Wayne also had a hard time settling down after so many years of bloody conflict. After the Revolution, he can't go home again. I don't know if you've ever seen the movie, The Best Years of Our Lives, about men who come back from World War II.

But my father was in World War II, and he used to say, watch that movie. It's hard to be in this thick of battle, and then to come home and do normal things. He tries to come home, he can't settle down.

Georgia has given him a plantation outside of Savannah for his services in the war. He goes down there, he's convinced I'm going to become this great planter. It's a disaster. He ends up in total debt. His depression grows greater and greater and greater. He drinks heavily. He's sick. He has the gout. On most mornings, he can't even stand. He has to wrap his arms and legs in flannel. His body is really suffering. But he tells his wife, I'm really doing this for you and the children.

I'm trying to make money. I think he was doing it just because he couldn't give up the struggle after the war was over. He goes so far into debt by about 1790, 1791. He almost sells off his family's farm and leaves his family homeless in Pennsylvania. His friends are stunned. They're saying, Wayne, you've lost your mind. Come back to Pennsylvania.

Stop this. He finally is facing debtor's prison. He's so afraid he's going to go into debtor's prison.

His children know he's lost his relationship with his children. And he decides, you know, if I run for office, I think you get immunity from prison. So in 1791, he runs for the House of Representatives from Georgia. He gets elected. He gets to Congress.

He sits in Congress. He says, I'm safe. I paid my debts. I sold my southern plantation.

Everything's great. And the man he defeated shows up in Philadelphia, comes to Congress and said, Wayne's supporters stuffed ballot boxes to get him elected. He didn't know about it, but it was corrupt. And Wayne is thrown out of Congress.

And he has just been humiliated by being thrown out of Congress. So by the early 1790s, when George Washington is president, Wayne is quite a scandalous man. But nevertheless, the United States was in a predicament. In the West, we were having massive issues with fighting the Indians, and Washington needed a general. Washington has a plan to move us West.

And can you imagine if we hadn't moved across the Appalachians, if we hadn't crossed the Ohio, if we hadn't gotten all the way out to the Mississippi River, we would have been 13 little states, you know, dying on the vine. Washington has this plan where I'll negotiate with the Indians. I'll respect them. I'll buy their land.

I'll pay them money and goods every year. And they'll slowly allow the Americans to cross the Ohio River. They signed treaties to do that, but then they confederated with the help of the British.

They were led by Little Turtle Blue Jacket, great chiefs like that. They just say, Washington, if you cross the Ohio River, it'll run red with the blood of your young men. Washington keeps negotiating, but one army is destroyed in 1790 under Harmer.

November, 1791, a second army is destroyed under Arthur St. Clair. At this very moment, Wayne is just thrown out of Congress, and George Washington has to find a general. He's desperate. What he does is he gets a list of all the people who had been generals through the American Revolution, looks down the list. Oh, my Lord, he said, I need somebody active, brave, and sober.

These men are all old, sick, and tired. He sees everybody and he criticizes everybody. He looks at Wayne. He doesn't. He's worried about Wayne.

Yes, he's active. Yes, he's unsurprising. But oh, maybe he doesn't always have the best judgment. I don't know if I can send this man westward. Will there be a mutiny? Will he spend too much money when I've got James Madison breathing down my neck about my expenditures?

Should I choose him? He remembers his mistakes. He forgets everything he did. He tells his cabinet, I'm thinking about Wayne, and they explode. It's Knox at War. It's Jefferson at State.

It's Hamilton at Treasury. They go, you can't pick this man. He's too scandalous. He's just, please don't do it.

Washington has to look back. What about Wayne does he know nobody else knows? Well, he knows that Wayne thinks he's perfection. He knows that Wayne is devoted to him. He remembers that, that if I pick him, he'll fight with me. He'll stay with me.

He won't turn on me. He remembers those letters. Washington remembers how before every battle he'd get this great letter.

You can do it. Afterward, he would write the, we'll still win. Probably the last two things in his favor. He was from Pennsylvania. Washington didn't want to appear as if the West belonged to Virginia. He kept appointing generals from Pennsylvania to go fight the Indians when necessary. And the last thing, Wayne wanted the job.

Wayne had been writing to politicians since 1789 when the Constitution is approved. I'll do anything. What do you want me to do? I will help America.

If there's something I can do to help my country, let me do it. And Wayne, Washington says, I'm taking a chance on Anthony Wayne. And again, when he does, he has to appoint him in 1792 to command this new army in the West.

And people write to him like, how can you appoint this man with all these scandals and all this? And Washington says, he's got to overcome his foibles. But Wayne also understands the seriousness of the situation and he'll live up to it.

And you're listening to Dr. Mary Stockwell tell one heck of a story about a complicated man. More of this remarkable story, Mad Anthony Wayne's story here on Our American Stories. And we're back with Our American Stories and the story of Mad Anthony Wayne. When we last left off, George Washington, Wayne's old boss, had taken a massive bet on him against the advice of his cabinet. And Wayne was sent west to fight the Indians.

Let's continue the story. He remembered the French and Indian War as a little boy. And he knew there were exciting tales of warfare over the mountains. His father fought in the French and Indian War. But he has no experience with Indians except women up at Fort Ticonderoga. He sees the Indian women who come into the fort, often as mistresses of the soldiers. But no experience fighting anybody. No experience until he gets to Georgia. When he gets to Georgia and he has to deal with the Creek Indians, who have seen their trade disrupted, because he's now breaking their tie with the British in Savannah, he writes speeches to them.

They're almost embarrassing to read. He has no idea who he's talking to, but he's talking to real people who are traitors, who are involved in the British economy. He tells the Indians, you're simple children of the forest. You stay over there and hunt your deer.

Let the white man over here fight our battles and we'll be friends when the war is over. His camp is ambushed in 1783. He comes close to being killed.

That kind of wakes him up. These are real people. They are deeply involved with the world economy. They're deeply involved with diplomacy. They're grave fighters.

And he gains a respect for the Indians almost overnight. He talks to anybody who's been out west and he says, I am going to learn how they fight, and I'm going to show them the respect they deserve. These are not savages. These are the top soldiers. They know this continent better than we do. My God, I'm going to have to train my army to be as good as them in absolute terror. When he leaves Philadelphia in the spring of 1792, he writes his last will and testament.

He goes, I'm not coming back from this alive. The power on the North American continent in the 1790s, not the United States, we're weak. The power of the great confederation nations out west, the Shawnee, the Delaware, and the British who are on American soil are arming and supporting them. The British wanted us defeated in the west.

So he comes west with immense respect, and he's got to teach his men how to respect the Indians more than anything else he discovers. I've got to find ways to teach them not to be afraid because my men are terrified. Let's say that you're going up against the British.

That's frightening. You line up the Continental Army on one side. The British line up on the other, and they keep coming after you in waves and waves and waves.

Wayne says, that's frightening enough. He said, the difference is if you're going into the wilderness, you've got to train your army and have them so perfectly trained because as you're marching, probably hoping for a confrontation or afraid of a confrontation with them, he said, they're tracking you, but you'll never see them. You'll never see them until the moment they strike. And he said, when they line up, they will line up, not like savages. They're going to line up against you, and they will command the place, the time, the battle. If you don't immediately get into position and don't immediately throw back their first assault, you're going to be surrounded. You're going to be defeated, and there's no quarter. It's not like you're going to be a prisoner of the British and set off to a prison ship. You will be killed, and you will be killed in some horrifying ways.

And the hard training would work for Wayne, and luckily so, because negotiations would break down, and he would once again be forced to fight. He gets command of the army. There is no army. It's been wiped out in November 1791, and Washington tells him, you're the commander of this new thing. We're going to call it the Legion of the United States.

Get out first to Pittsburgh. He'll later be sent to Cincinnati, and then he'll be sent up to a place called Greenville, where he built this big fort. They promised him 5,000 men.

He never gets more than about 1,000 men. And they said, train the men so perfectly that if we call you into battle, you will defeat them, but don't scare the Indians, because the negotiations are ongoing, so don't appear too aggressive. If we do tell you the negotiations have broken down and you must fight, then you will fight.

And Wayne does what he's told. He said, I can train the men to march. I can train them to follow orders. I can train them to shoot.

They can't shoot. But he said, the thing that I'm really struggling with, they're so terrified. In the very first Indian attack, he lines his men up, and he says, okay, I'm going to go up on the ramparts, check for the Indians, and then I'm going to come back, and we'll be ready to fight.

Indians aren't there. When he turns around to go back to his men, they've all fled. They've completely fled. They don't want to fight. He had to do this a few times when he was training his men when they were so terrified. He said, all right, line everybody up, gets on his horse, goes back and forth in front of his men, this army he's trying to put together. He said, if the battle begins and the riflemen up at the front run, I'm going to order the dragoons behind them to shoot the riflemen. If the dragoons run, then the light infantry behind them shoot the dragoons. If everybody runs, I'm going to turn my own artillery on you guys. What he wanted them to be was more afraid of him than the enemy. He also said, if we all run, we all die because there's no quarter in Indian warfare.

After two years of training his men, Washington tells Knox to tell Wayne the negotiations are done. Start taking that thousand-man army. Call up the Kentucky militia, the moderate riflemen. Start marching north. Go up the Maumee River towards Lake Erie. The British have just built an illegal fort there in 1794.

It's south of Detroit. They're arming. They're directing the Indians.

You're probably going to meet the Indians and the British and the Canadian militia somewhere between Greenville and what is now the city of Toledo, Ohio. Just start marching. You must defeat them. And when you defeat them, you've got to get a treaty. It's a nerve-wracking march, and it's finally August the 19th.

No Indians have attacked them. And they begin the final march on the morning of August the 20th. The night before this, there's been a terrible rainstorm, and all of the drums have lost their ability to pound.

They're all loosened in the rain. And Wayne is like, I've trained you guys for two years to march to my orders and to line up in battle in a line against the Indians based on these. He calls this young lieutenant who he's taken liking to, and he puts a green sash around him. And he says, if the battle comes tomorrow, you have to ride back and forth through the lines with my orders.

And that young man with the green sash is William Henry Harrison. The shots ring out against Wayne's men. Wayne's men run in terror.

And suddenly, within five minutes, Wayne has them in perfect order. Everybody lines up in these two huge parallel lines against the Indians. They're fighting over trees that were downed. The battle goes on for about maybe an hour. Indians attack on the right. They attack on the left. They come up the center.

The eyewitnesses of the Indians who were in the battle are amazing. They go, he didn't fold. They held their line. And they said, suddenly we heard Wayne's trumpets. We heard trumpets on the left, the right, the center. He's coming after us.

He's surrounding us. And they flee the field. They run back about three or four miles to this illegal British fort. And then they close the gates in the faces of these Indians.

And they said, we don't know you. And we didn't have anything to do with this battle. And then the Indians have to flee with their families back to wherever they've come. We now call it the Battle of Fallen Timbers. Wayne called it the Battle of the Rapids. He said, I remember when we got up to the rapids of the river, bang, the Indian line was formed against us.

It was classic Brandywine, classic Germantown. They were lined up to fight us, and we were ready. We didn't fold. My men, he was stunned. He never recovered from this victory. He goes, I think I won a victory.

It was, again, this is the battle that has all the monuments out here, but nobody knows who Wayne was or what he was fighting about. He's fighting to allow Americans to settle north of the Ohio. It takes a year for the Indians to finally come in and write a treaty. They come in a year later, they write the Treaty of Greenville, and they say, all right, America, you can settle north of the Ohio. We'll move back towards the lakes. We will ally with each other, we'll trade with each other. And the British also signed Jay's Treaty, and they say, we leave. We leave.

We're going back to Canada. It's, in the end, a great victory. What Wayne has really won is about maybe ten years of peace, 1795 to 1805, to allow Americans to grow western and become stronger and really win the country from the Appalachians to the Mississippi.

Win it for real. That's the military side of things. That's the battle that Anthony Wayne wins, but he almost never, for the few remaining months of his life, could hardly believe that he actually trained an army, that they stood and fight, and they won and defeated this powerful enemy. And great work on that, Monty, and a special thanks to Dr. Mary Stockwell, author of Unlikely General, Mad Anthony Wayne, and the Battle for America, the story of Mad Anthony Wayne, here on Our American Stories.
Whisper: medium.en / 2023-02-17 04:00:49 / 2023-02-17 04:15:52 / 15

Get The Truth Mobile App and Listen to your Favorite Station Anytime