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River Raisin National Battlefield Park is an enduring reminder of the great sacrifices that have been and continue to be required to defend our freedom and democratic form of government. The Battlefield forever holds the story of the struggle to build a new Nation, the fight for world dominance and the great efforts American Indians exerted to preserve their way of life and lands. The Battlefield celebrates the liberation of Michigan and the years of peace that have ensued since the War of 1812 between Canada, Great Britain and the United States. The Battlefield recognizes the tremendous loss American Indians suffered in the aftermath of the War of 1812 and the continuing struggle of many American Indians who continue to work tirelessly to keep their heritage and native customs alive.
River Raisin National Battlefield Park is the only National Battlefield Park dedicated to preserving and telling the story of the War of 1812. It is also the only unit of the National Park System that preserves and tells the story of the conflicting interests central to the War of 1812 in the Northwest Territories. The Battlefield is internationally significant for the following reasons:
- Battle for Supremacy or Survival: River Raisin National Battlefield Park reflects the multinational battle for supremacy or survival in the Old Northwest during the War of 1812, which included the United States, tribal nations, French settlers, and the British Empire.
- “Remember the Raisin”: The Battles of the River Raisin resulted in the largest number of American combat facilities of any battle during the War of 1812. Following the battles, “Remember the Raisin” became the United States first War-Time battle cry that galvanized the fledgling nation, helped unify the cause for war, and influenced U.S. policy regarding tribal nations.
- Le Choc Des Cultures: River Raisin National Battlefield Park reflects the many different cultures (including tribal nations, French habitants, American, African American, and British) involved in the land campaign of the Old Northwest during the War of 1812.
- Tecumseh’s Confederation Realized: The combined forces of Tecumseh’s Confederation demonstrated their strength and power on the battlefield at the River Raisin, leading to recognition as a significant military force and threat to western settlers. Tecumseh’s Confederation united many tribal nations to defend their lands and ways of life against Western expansion and the threat of change – a struggle that continues to evolve today. Chief Tecumseh was killed as a result of the U.S. revenge for the devastating defeat at the Battles of the River Raisin.
- Hull’s Corduroy Road: Rare corduroy road remnants of Hull’s Trace are located near the mouth of the Huron River in Wayne, County Michigan. The 200-mile long Hull’s Trace between Urbana, Ohio, and Fort Detroit was constructed by American troops under the command of General William Hull as a supply route. Portions of the route built through marshy tracts were shored up with a series of logs placed horizontally. These became known as corduroy roads. The road was a thoroughfare for troops entering and exiting Frenchtown for the battles.