On the eve of the 200th anniversary of the Battle of New Orleans, historians are remembering the contributions of Mississippi militia in defeating the British in the War of 1812.
Thursday, the Crescent City will remember the soldiers who fought in that battle and many folks will also note the important role of the Mississippi Dragoons in the days leading up to it. That mounted militia unit, made up of about 200 men, served as General Andrew Jackson's, "eyes on the British," according to Chad Daniels, director of the Mississippi Armed Forces Museum at Camp Shelby.
"As the British advanced, the dragoons monitored where they were," said Daniels. "(The dragoons) would probe them, harass them, make them back up a little bit, gave Jackson more time to establish his defensive work along the Rodriguez Canal," he said.
The museum at Camp Shelby has the largest exhibit anywhere on the Mississippi Dragoons, including rare artifacts used by the troops themselves.