Our Collection

At the Institute’s core is the Gilder Lehrman Collection, one of the great archives in American history. More than 70,000 items cover five hundred years of American history, from Columbus’s 1493 letter describing the New World to soldiers’ letters from World War II and Vietnam. Explore primary sources, visit exhibitions in person or online, or bring your class on a field trip.

Binns, John (1772-1860) Monumental Inscriptions!

High-resolution images are available to schools and libraries via subscription to American History, 1493-1943. Check to see if your school or library already has a subscription. Or click here for more information. You may also order a pdf of the image from us here.

Gilder Lehrman Collection #: GLC01825 Author/Creator: Binns, John (1772-1860) Place Written: Philadelphia, Pennsylvania Type: Broadside Date: 1828 Pagination: 1 p. ; 57 x 44 cm.

Summary of Content: Depicts 6 fictitious funeral monuments, each to a militiamen executed by Jackson on 21 February 1815, after the Battle of New Orleans, for being deserters. The tombstones bear inscriptions detailing how each was a good man and soldier, and regardless of this, was "By the Orders of General Andrew Jackson, Shot to Death." Each monument was supposedly erected on 4 July, 1828. One monument reminds the reader "Let not the splendor of Military renown Blot out from your indignant recollection this bloody deed DONE BY A HERO." Includes a verse at the bottom entitled "Mournful Tragedy." Jackson had not actually ordered the men to be shot, but had signed off on the military court's verdict. Used as Anti-Jackson campaign propaganda in the 1828 presidential election, a campaign full of personal attacks on slanders on both candidates. Binns is attributed as the author of a like-named piece which bears the same text at the American Antiquarian Society (Shoemaker 32382). GLC08460 contains almost identical text in pamphlet form.

Background Information: John Binns published the "Democratic Press" in Philadelphia, a paper that opposed Jackson.

People: Binns, John, 1772-1860
Jackson, Andrew, 1767-1845

Historical Era: National Expansion and Reform, 1815-1860

Subjects: Battle of New OrleansPresidentWar of 1812MilitiaDesertionMilitary HistoryMilitary LawDeathDeath PenaltyMonumentPropagandaElectionPoliticsJournalismBattle

Sub Era: Age of Jackson

Order a Copy Citation Guidelines for Online Resources