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Friday April 25, 2014
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Remember the Raisin!



That winter, a militia force was organized in Kentucky to march up and take the city back. On January 18, 1813, they ran into the enemy camped on the River Raisin at Frenchtown--today's Monroe--and drove them off in the first skirmish. Two days later, the enemy returned, to the detriment of the Kentucky militia.

The second, decisive battle left almost 400 Americans dead and more than 500 taken prisoner. The following day, in the River Raisin Massacre, vengeful Native Americans killed dozens of wounded Kentuckians. It was the bloodiest battle ever fought in Michigan and accounted for 15 percent of American deaths in the War of 1812.

I have a long history of being fascinated by history. The newly designated River Raisin National Battlefield Park--much of it, until fairly recently, a paper mill and landfill--is on Monroe's Elm Street. Carefully studying a map, I saw that Elm becomes North Custer, which becomes Plank Road, which becomes Milan's Main Street.

Milan's Main turns into Saline-Milan Road, which turns into Saline's Ann Arbor Street. As it nears Ann Arbor, the road then splits into Ann Arbor-Saline and Wagner roads.

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