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Zebulon Montgomery Pike (January 5, 1779 – April 27, 1813) was an American brigadier general and explorer for whom Pikes Peak
Pikes Peak
in Colorado
Colorado
was renamed (from El Capitan). As a U.S. Army officer he led two expeditions under authority of third President Thomas Jefferson through the new Louisiana Purchase
Louisiana Purchase
territory, first in 1805-06 to reconnoiter the upper northern reaches of the Mississippi River, and then in 1806-07 to explore the Southwest to the fringes of the northern Spanish-colonial settlements of New Mexico
New Mexico
and Texas. Pike's expeditions coincided with other Jeffersonian expeditions, including the Lewis and Clark Expedition
Lewis and Clark Expedition
(1804–1806) and the Thomas Freeman and Peter Custis expedition up the Red River (1806).[1] Pike's second expedition crossed the Rocky Mountains
Rocky Mountains
into what became later as southern Colorado, which led to his capture by the Spanish colonial authorities near Santa Fe, who sent Pike and his men to Chihuahua (present-day Mexico), for interrogation. Later in 1807, Pike and some of his men were escorted by the Spanish through Texas
Texas
and released near American territory in Louisiana. In 1810, Pike published an account of his expeditions, a book so popular that it was translated into Dutch, French, and German languages, for publication in Europe. He later achieved the rank of brigadier general in the American Army and served during the War of 1812, until he was killed during the Battle of York, in April 1813, outside the then British colonial capital of Upper Canada
Upper Canada
(later Ontario).

Contents

1 Early and family life

1.1 Early life and education 1.2 Marriage and family

2 Military career

2.1 Pike Expedition 2.2 War of 1812

3 Journals 4 Legacy

4.1 Federal 4.2 State and local

5 See also 6 Footnotes 7 Further reading 8 External links

Early and family life[edit] Early life and education[edit] Pike was born during the Revolutionary War, on January 5, 1779, near Lamberton,[2][3] now called Lamington,[4] in Somerset County, New Jersey. He would follow in the footsteps of his father, also named Zebulon, who had begun his own career in the military service of the United States
United States
beginning in 1775, at the outset of the American Revolutionary War. The younger Pike grew to adulthood with his family at a series of outposts in Ohio
Ohio
and Illinois – the United States' northwestern frontier at the time. He was commissioned as a second lieutenant of infantry in 1799 and promoted to first lieutenant later that same year. Marriage and family[edit] Zebulon Pike, Jr. married Clarissa Harlow Brown in 1801.[5] They had one child who survived to adulthood, Clarissa Brown Pike, who later married President William Henry Harrison's son, John Cleves Symmes Harrison. Military career[edit] Pike's military career included working on logistics and payroll at a series of frontier posts, including Fort Bellefontaine
Fort Bellefontaine
near St. Louis. General James Wilkinson, appointed Governor of the Upper Louisiana Territory and headquartered there, became his mentor. In 1805, Wilkinson ordered Pike to find the source of the Mississippi River, so Pike traveled into the northern Louisiana
Louisiana
Territory, newly purchased from France. Over 100 years later, France released official records showing General Wilkinson received personal trade concessions and thus could be labeled a spy for Spain
Spain
at the time.[6] Pike Expedition[edit] Main article: Pike Expedition

Pikes Peak, central Colorado

After Pike returned from this first expedition, General Wilkinson almost immediately ordered him to mount a second expedition, this time to explore, map, and find the headwaters of the Arkansas and Red rivers. Additional objectives of this exploratory expedition into the southwestern part of the Louisiana
Louisiana
Territory were to evaluate natural resources and establish friendly relations with Native americans. Beginning July 15, 1806, Pike led what became known as the "Pike Expedition". General Wilkinson's son James served as one of his lieutenants, although it now seems that Wilkinson planned that the Spanish who controlled Mexico
Mexico
would capture him and his men.[citation needed] In early November 1806, Pike and his team sighted and tried to climb to the summit of the peak later named after him (Pikes Peak). They made it as far as Mt. Rosa, located southeast of Pikes Peak, before giving up the ascent in waist-deep snow. They had already gone almost two days without food. They then continued south, searching for the Red River's headwaters, and built a fort for shelter during the winter. However, they had crossed the border, whether through confusion or deliberation. Spanish authorities captured Pike and some of his party in what was then northern New Mexico
New Mexico
(now part of southern Colorado) on February 26, 1807. Pike and his men were taken to Santa Fe then to the capital of Chihuahua province, and presented to Commandant General Salcedo, who was governor of the state.[7] Pike was treated well and invited to formal social dinners, but still not quite given the treatment of a visiting dignitary, and his men were kept prisoner. Salcedo housed Pike with Juan Pedro Walker, a cartographer who also acted as an interpreter. Walker transcribed and translated Pike's confiscated documents, including his journal. Mexican authorities feared the spread of both democracy and Protestant Christian sects that might undermine their rule. During this time, Pike had access to various maps of the southwest and learned about Mexico's discontent with Spanish rule. Spain
Spain
filed official protests with the United States
United States
about Pike's expedition, but since the nations were not at war (and Spain
Spain
was rebelling against Napoleon's brother, who was fighting England in the Peninsular War), Commandant Salcedo released the military men. The Spanish escorted Pike and most of his men north, releasing them at the Louisiana
Louisiana
border on July 1, 1807. However, some of Pike's soldiers were held for years in Mexico.[citation needed] The Red River, which later separated Oklahoma Territory
Oklahoma Territory
from Texas, was next explored by the ill-fated [8] expedition of 1815, named for the Colonel who died; only two sick men returned, one of whom died soon thereafter. He also ended up in the Spanish territory. War of 1812[edit] Pike was promoted to captain during the southwestern expedition. In 1811, Lt. Col. Zebulon M. Pike with the 4th Infantry Regiment fought at the Battle of Tippecanoe. He was promoted to colonel in 1812. Pike's military career also included service as deputy quartermaster-general in New Orleans
New Orleans
and inspector-general during the War of 1812. Pike was promoted to brigadier general in 1813.[9] Along with General Jacob Brown, Pike departed from the newly fortified rural military outpost of Sackets Harbor, on the New York shore of Lake Ontario, for what became his last military campaign. On this expedition, Pike commanded combat troops in the successful attack on York (now Toronto), on April 27, 1813. Pike was killed, along with numerous other American troops, by flying rocks and other debris when the withdrawing British garrison blew up its ammunition magazine as Pike's troops approached Fort York.[10] His body was brought by ship back to Sackets Harbor, where his remains were buried at the military cemetery.[11] Journals[edit] The Spanish authorities confiscated Pike's journals, which were not recovered by the United States
United States
from Mexico
Mexico
until the 1900s. Pike wrote an account from memory of his expeditions, which was published in 1810 as The expeditions of Zebulon Montgomery Pike to Headwaters of the Mississippi River, through Louisiana
Louisiana
Territory, and in New Spain, during the Years 1805-6-7.[12] It was popular; was later translated into Dutch, French, and German editions; and became required reading for all American explorers who followed him in the 19th century. Pike's capture by the Spanish and travel through the Southwest gave Pike insight into the region. For example, he described the politics in Chihuahua, which led to the Mexican independence
Mexican independence
movement, and described trade conditions in the Spanish territories of New Mexico and Chihuahua, which contributed to development of the Santa Fe Trail.[citation needed] Legacy[edit] As Olsen (2006) shows, after Pike's death in battle, his military accomplishments were widely celebrated in terms of biographies, mourning memorials, paintings, poems, and songs, and he became the namesake for dozens of towns, counties, and ships. His memory faded after the Civil War but rebounded in 1906, at the centennial of his Southwest Expedition. His 20th century reputation focused on his exploration, and his name appeared often on natural features, such as dams, islands, lakes, and parks.[13] Federal[edit]

Fort Pike Liberty ship
Liberty ship
SS Zebulon Pike
Zebulon Pike
(appears in Episode 1 of Victory At Sea) General Zebulon Pike
Zebulon Pike
Lock and Dam No. 11
Lock and Dam No. 11
in Dubuque, Iowa Pike National Forest Pikes Peak USS General Pike

State and local[edit]

Pike County in:

Alabama Arkansas Georgia and its county seat Zebulon Illinois Indiana Kentucky Mississippi Missouri Ohio Pennsylvania

Pikes Peak
Pikes Peak
(Iowa) Pike (hamlet), New York Piketon, Ohio Pikeville, Kentucky Pikesville, Maryland Pike Island
Pike Island
in Fort Snelling State Park, Minnesota[14] Pike Creek Township in Morrison County, Minnesota Pike Township, Marion County, Indiana Pike Township, Wyoming County, New York Pike Township, Stark County, Ohio Pike Trail League, Kansas high school activities league[15] Pike Valley School District, Kansas School District, U.S.D. 426

See also[edit]

Pike's Purchase

Footnotes[edit]

^ Berry, Trey; Beasley, Pam; Clements, Jeanne, eds. (2006). The Forgotten Expedition, 1804–1805: The Louisiana Purchase
Louisiana Purchase
Journals of Dunbar and Hunter. Louisiana
Louisiana
State University Press. p. xi. ISBN 978-0-8071-3165-7.  ^ Irving, Washington (November 1814). "Biographical Memoir of the Late Brigadier General Zebulon Montgomery Pike". Analectic Magazine. Vol. 4. p. 380.  ^ Wilson, Thomas (1822). The Biography of the Principal American Military and Naval Heroes; Comprehending Details of Their Achievements During the Revolutionary and Late Wars. II (Second ed.). New York: John Low. p. 9.  ^ Backes, William J. (October 1919). "General Zebulon M. Pike, Somerset-Born". Somerset County Historical Quarterly. 8 (4): 241–51.  ^ Buckley, Jay H.; Harris, Matthew L., eds. (2012). Zebulon Pike, Thomas Jefferson, and the Opening of the American West. Norman, Oklahoma: University of Oklahoma Press. ISBN 978-0-8061-4243-2.  ^ "The Duel – People & Events: James Wilkinson". PBS. Archived from the original on February 18, 2015. Retrieved February 18, 2015.  ^ Buescher, John. "Trailing Lewis and Clark". TeachingHistory.org. Retrieved July 12, 2011.  ^ Woolley ^ Valkenburg, Samuel Van (1976). "Pike, Zebulon Montgomery". In William D. Halsey. Collier's Encyclopedia. 19. New York: Macmillan Educational Corporation. p. 46.  ^ Peppiatt, Liam. "Chapter 31B: Fort York". Robertson's Landmarks of Toronto.  ^ Zebulon Montgomery Pike at Find a Grave ^ Pike, Zebulon Montgomery (1965). Elliott Coues, ed. The expeditions of Zebulon Montgomery Pike to headwaters of the Mississippi River, through Louisiana
Louisiana
Territory, and in New Spain, during the years 1805-6-7. Ross & Haines (published 1895).  ^ Olsen, Michael L. (Spring 2006). " Zebulon Pike
Zebulon Pike
and American Popular Culture – or – Has Pike Peaked?" (PDF). Kansas History. 29 (1): 48–59.  ^ Upham, Warren (1920). Minnesota
Minnesota
Geographic Names: Their Origin and Historic Significance. Minnesota
Minnesota
Historical Society. p. 441.  ^ Garman-Schlaefli, Gloria (31 Jan 2008). "Pike Trail League formed 60 years ago". Jewell County Record (5). Retrieved 8 February 2016. 

Further reading[edit]

Harris and Jay H. Buckley, Matthew L. (2012). Zebulon Pike, Thomas Jefferson, and the Opening of the American West. Norman, Oklahoma: University of Oklahoma Press. ISBN 978-0-8061-4243-2.  Hollon, W. Eugene (1949). The Lost Pathfinder, Zebulon Montgomery Pike. Norman, Oklahoma: University of Oklahoma Press. ISBN 978-0806101934.  Orsi, Jared (2014). Citizen Explorer: The Life of Zebulon Pike. Oxford, England: Oxford University Press. ISBN 978-0-19-976872-1. 

External links[edit]

Works by Zebulon Pike
Zebulon Pike
at Project Gutenberg Works by or about Zebulon Pike
Zebulon Pike
at Internet Archive Works by Zebulon Pike
Zebulon Pike
at Open Library Zebulon Pike
Zebulon Pike
at Goodreads National Park Service biography Santa Fe Trail
Santa Fe Trail
Research "Butler County connections to the Mexican War" Hamilton Journal-News Hamilton, Ohio Pike's Explorations - related to Pike's journey to find the source of the Mississippi River
Mississippi River
and the building of his fort in what is now Morrison County, Minnesota Pike's Menagerie - the animals Pike and his men encountered in central Minnesota Was Pike a Failure? - an examination of the often-heard critique of Pike's Mississippi River
Mississippi River
expedition Zebulon Pike
Zebulon Pike
and the Blue Mountain - award-winning film produced with the help of Pike Historian W. Eugene Hollon, the U.S. Army, the Smithsonian and the National Archives about the explorer's time in what is now Colorado

Military offices

Preceded by Thomas H. Cushing Adjutant Generals of the U. S. Army March 12, 1813 – April 27, 1813 Succeeded by vacant

Preceded by Alexander Smyth Inspector General of the U. S. Army March 12, 1813 – April 27, 1813 Succeeded by vacant

Authority control

WorldCat Identities VIAF: 68919672 LCCN: n79022061 ISNI: 0000 0000 8391 1416 GND: 119477157 SELIBR: 291005 SUDOC: 066885744 BNF: cb10607246r (da

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