Historic Markers Across Alabama

A Bloody Contest

Marker ID:  
Location: located about 150 yards above the Overlook Parking area on the grounds of Horseshoe Bend National Military Park along the Battlefield Park Road, Daviston, Alabama
County: Tallapoosa
Coordinates: N 32° 58.8    W 085° 44.024
  32.98    -85.73373333
Style: Interpretative Sign **
Waymark: None


A Bloody Contest
Horseshoe Bend National Military Park

Any officer or soldiers who flies before the enemy-shall suffer death.

With these harsh words, Maj. Gen. Andrew Jackson marched his soldiers 52 miles from the Coosa River to Horseshoe Bend and a bloody contest with the Red Sticks. His battle map shows how he positioned his troops early that Sunday morning, March 27, 1814.

In the field before you-in 1814 a forest of pine, oak, and hickory-Jackson's troops prepared for battle. A half mile ahead stood a log barricade, with the Red Sticks behind it awaiting Jackson's advance. The barricade, built by the Red Sticks, sealed off the horseshoe bend in the Tallapoosa River and protected their village, Tohopeka, which included 350 women and children.

The war started in 1813 as a civil war within the Creek confederation of towns. A portion of the population, known as Red Sticks, rebelled against the Creek national council, a group generally seeking to accommodate rather than challenge American expansion. The Creek civil war quickly developed into a large conflict involving Georgia, Tennessee, and the Mississippi Territory.

As Maj. Gen. Andrew Jackson pushed south with his Tennessee army, Red Sticks from several towns sought refuge here at Horseshoe Bend. Jackson, determined to succeed where previous campaigns had been indecisive, marched his soldiers two and half days through the forest to this ground.

Erected by National Park Service U.S. Department of the Interior.

End of A Bloody Contest