Old Tippecanoe

First Quarter Moon

William Henry Harrison was the son of Benjamin Harrison, who signed the Declaration of Independence. I guess that makes William a founding son.

In the War of 1812, William became a hero for leading other sons into battle versus Shawnee Chief Tecumseh and his braves. Lots of people died and the results of the battle were nebulous other than the fact that the Shawnee people then wanted the English to win the war. Oops. War: not a good way to make friends.

The fight was known as the battle of Tippecanoe and from then on “Tippecanoe” or later “Old Tip” became William Henry Harrison’s nickname.

“Old Tip” got himself elected over Martin Van Buren when he was a ripe 68 years old. To prove he was still vigorous and capable of the job, he gave a long acceptance speech for a couple of hours outdoors in the cold rain. Then he caught pneumonia and died. He was only Prez for a month or so. Pretty sad.

William Henry Harrison was entombed on a hill overlooking the Ohio River near North Bend OH. The presidential gravesite is really quite beautiful and open to visitors during daylight hours. I stopped there yesterday near the end of my 23 mile walk to pay my respects, eat some snacks in the park, and learn some history/folklore.


I was very impressed by this monument to our ninth president. So much so that I may or may not have illegally camped in the general vicinity.


You can actually go inside the tomb. I had never in my 64 years been inside a tomb until yesterday. It’s very somber inside a tomb, sports fans.


I liked it better outside personally. Nice stone work.


And, of course, you can never have too many eagles.


My hike was improved on this fine, sunny day by meeting two gentlemen, hours apart, who inspired me greatly.

The first was Tom Gindling on the outskirts of Addyston OH. Tom was mowing his vast lawn and stopped to  wave me over to talk for a few minutes. He told me about other ADT hikers he had met in previous years and we talked about Reach Across America for a bit. A genuinely nice, warm human is Tom Gindling. I’m happy to have met him.

The second person was a young college student from Northern Kentucky University named Chris. Chris stopped his car along the road I was walking and came over to chat. A professor of his is doing an experiment of sorts to spread a little joy around the world. After Chris and I talked about what the heck I am up to, he went back to his car and retrieved a business card.

On the back side it has the professor’s name and some instructions. On the front it says “You make me smile :)” The idea is to give the card to someone whose company you have enjoyed. You are supposed to pass it on within 24 hours.

When Chris handed me the card, he also gave me a twenty dollar bill to help me keep going. I was smiling for quite a while after that.


Peace, Love, and Tyler, Too,

3 thoughts on “Old Tippecanoe

  1. Too cool, Jim. Sleeping between two eagles! The weather looks better in your pix, not at all the way it looks around the country. Canadian air hitting the gulf stream, kaboom! Stay safe. Val


  2. Isn’t the history back there amazing and it’s just everywhere. looks like the weather is trying to improve. Your daily mileage just amazes me! happy journey, Cf


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