Many pioneer and Indian conflicts occurred in the 1800s, and several battleground sites have been preserved like the Pigeon Roost Massacre State Historic Site or the Tippecanoe Battlefield Park. A pioneer village was established in 1809 on the grounds of this state historic site. Indians attacked the village for unknown reasons in 1812, and this was the first Indiana battle of the War of 1812. Twenty four people were killed, mostly women and children. The Shawnee War Party massacred everyone in the village besides one escaped family. This sad moment in Indiana history is commemorated by a memorial obelisk, a grave site and a marker from the Indiana Historical Bureau.
The Pigeon Roost Massacre State Historic Site is located in southern Indiana, just 85 miles down I-65. This is a great spot for a family day trip from Indianapolis, and there is even a picnic shelter is located on the grounds. Imaginations soar at this quiet and serene Indiana attraction. History buffs, school field trip groups, families and even Indianapolis kids enjoy visiting this Hoosier landmark.
The area was recognized as a State Historic Site in 1929, after the Indiana General Assembly spent $2,000 building the 40-foot obelisk monument. An engraved stone on the structure reads, “In memory of the pioneer heroes, twenty-two in number, massacred at Pigeon Roost defeated by the Shawnee Indians Sept. 3, 1812.”
Also on the grounds of the Pigeon Roost Massacre State Historic Site is a common grave site. The victims of the Pigeon Roost Massacre are believed to be buried there. The pioneer town was supposedly dubbed “Pigeon Roost” because of a high population of passenger pigeons in the area. Let your imagination run wild on this adventure outside the Circle City. Admission to the Pigeon Roost Massacre State Historic Site is free, and it closes each evening at dusk.
A similar site in Indiana can be found near West Lafayette, Indiana at the Tippecanoe Battlefield Park. This battle resulted in a victory for the U.S. troops led by General William Henry Harrison. This battle was a major event leading up to the War of 1812. Approximately 80 people died in this battle, and casualties were equal on both sides.
Other military history monuments and dedications are found throughout the Crossroads of America, including the Soldiers’ and Sailors’ Monument, Veterans Memorial Plaza, Military Park, the Congressional Medal of Honor Monument on the Canal at White River State Park and many other tributes statewide.
Pigeon Roost Massacre State Historic Site
1050 South Main Street
Scottsburg, Indiana 47170