Historic Structures

William Henry Harrison House, Vincennes, Indiana

Date added: June 28, 2016 Categories: Indiana House Mansion Georgian

Perhaps the most valuable historic shrine in Indiana is the old colonial home built and occupied by William Henry Harrison while governor of Indiana Territory. This fine old mansion was much more than a residence. It was in every sense of the word the 'White House of the West.' Erected in 1804, it is said to have been the first brick building in Vincennes.

Grouseland originally occupied an estate of 300 acres along the Wabash, immediately north of Vincennes, About the house stood a magnificent grove of native walnut trees. It was in this grove that General Harrison held his famous council with the Indian chief, Tecumseh, in 1811.

An interesting feature of the house is the council room where General Harrison conducted his business as Superintendent of Indian Affairs, While historians are not agreed regarding the existence of a secret stairway and passageway to the river "bank for escape in the event of Indian attacks, powder magazine for storing ammunition, the look-out on top of the house and the hole in a shutter caused when an ambushed savage shot at General Harrison, the present generation in Vincennes believes firmly in the existence of these striking reminders of pioneer days.

The architecture is Georgian and the masonry and woodwork are of the finest materials and evidence a skill that is both interesting and refreshing.