Here are five interesting facts about December 20 in Indiana history:
1. On December 20, 1811, the Battle of Tippecanoe took place near the Wabash River in the Indiana Territory. This was a pivotal conflict between the forces of American General William Henry Harrison and a confederation of Native American tribes led by Shawnee chief Tecumseh and his brother Tenskwatawa, also known as the Prophet. Although the battle itself ended in a tactical victory for the Americans, it led to increased tensions between the United States and Native peoples in the region, ultimately contributing to the outbreak of the War of 1812.
2. December 20, 1816 was the day that Indiana became the 19th state to join the Union. The process of achieving statehood had taken several years and involved a number of political and economic challenges, but the people of Indiana were eager to have greater representation in the national government and to promote their agriculture and industry on a larger scale.
3. In 1859, the Indiana Statehouse was completed in Indianapolis, on December 20. This building, designed by architect Edwin May and built using Indiana limestone, has since become a symbol of the state's government and history. It houses the offices of the governor and other state officials, as well as the chambers of the Indiana House of Representatives and Senate.
4. December 20, 1864 marked the start of the famous Civil War battle known as the Battle of Nashville. Although this conflict took place in Tennessee rather than Indiana, many soldiers from the Hoosier State fought bravely on both sides of the conflict. The Union victory at Nashville marked a turning point in the war and helped ensure the ultimate defeat of the Confederacy.
5. On December 20, 1988, Pan Am Flight 103 was bombed over Lockerbie, Scotland, killing all 259 people on board as well as 11 people on the ground. Among the victims were 35 students and faculty members from Syracuse University, including several Indiana residents. This tragic event had a deep impact on the families of those who lost loved ones and on the broader international community, leading to increased scrutiny of air travel security measures and international terrorism.
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