James Madison Papers

To James Madison from Duncan McArthur, 7 May 1812 (Abstract)

§ From Duncan McArthur

7 May 1812, Headquarters, Dayton, Ohio. States that under the 6 Feb. 1812 act to raise a volunteer corps it is his duty to inform JM that he now commands a regiment of “five hundred and fifty men including officers; all from the Second Division of Ohio militia who are now at this place on their march to Detroit, agreeably to the call made by the President of the United States, on the patriotism of Ohio.”1 “The officers … have all been Elected agreeably to the constitution and laws of this State.” Inquires whether it will be necessary to forward a roll of the officers and soldiers to the War Department.2

RC (DNA: RG 107, LRRS, M-217:6). 2 pp. Docketed as received in the War Department on 27 May 1812.

1On 26 Mar. 1812 Secretary of War Eustis had written to Gov. Return Jonathan Meigs, Jr., of Ohio requesting him to call into service twelve hundred men from the state militia and to march them to Detroit “as soon as possible for the defence of that Post.” Four hundred of these troops were to provide their own rifles and ammunition; the remaining troops received arms from the military storekeeper at Newport, Kentucky. Governor Meigs was given the discretion to choose the routes for the march to Detroit, but the commanding officers were enjoined to “communicate to the Indians on their march thro’ their country, the object of the detachment, and be careful that no trespass is committed on their persons, or property and assure them of the continued friendship of the U. States” (DNA: RG 107, LSMA).

2For an account of McArthur’s role in the subsequent effort to invade Upper Canada from Detroit, see C. H. Cramer, “Duncan McArthur: The Military Phase,” Ohio State Archaeological and Historical Quarterly, 46 [1937]: 128–47.

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