Photograph - Photography
Here, the "Serenity" of the peaceful landscape modern day historic site belies the blood-soaked battle site of at the Battle of New Orleans, where Major General Andrew Jackson led his troops in the fight for independence, for America, for freedom, in a bloody battle against the British, where over two thousand men died (both British and American). The battle inspired the lighthearted song "The Battle of New Orleans" that misrepresents the British forces as being cowards; the version by Johnny Horton topped the Billboard Hot 100 in 1959. The Battle of New Orleans took place on January 8, 1815 and was the final major battle of the War of 1812. American forces defeated an invading British Army intent on seizing New Orleans and the vast territory the United States had acquired with the Louisiana Purchase. With the Americans outnumbered, the city of New Orleans was in danger of being captured. The Ursuline nuns and faithful people of New Orleans gathered in the Ursuline Convent's chapel before the statue of Our Lady of Prompt Succor. They spent the night before the battle praying and crying before the holy statue, begging for the Virgin Mary's intercession. On the morning of January 8, the Vicar General offered Mass at the altar where Our Lady of Prompt Succor statue was placed. The Prioress of the Ursuline convent made a vow to have a Mass of Thanksgiving sung annually should the American forces win. At the very moment of communion, a courier ran into the chapel to announce that the British had been defeated. General Jackson went to the convent himself to thank the nuns for their prayers: "By the blessing of heaven, directing the valor of the troops under my command, one of the most brilliant victories in the annals of war was obtained." The vow has been faithfully kept throughout the years.
May 29th, 2013
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