Making up two and a half regiments in the expanding regular army before the end of 1812, Kentuckians had an important part on the western front in the war of 1812. By the end of the war, approximately 25,705 Kentucky men had served as regulars, volunteers or militiamen. Of the 1,876 Americans killed during the war, about 1,200 were Kentuckians, even though the state had never suffered an invasion. 1)
Local Historian Roberta Chumley describes General Andrew Jackson, who would become President, telling the Kentuckians to “Get on down to New Orleans as fast as you can even if you don't have enough rifles.” 2) When some Kentucky troops actually showed up without firearms on January 4,1815, Jackson purportedly exclaimed, “I have never seen a Kentuckian without a gun and a pack of cards and a bottle of whiskey in my life.” 3)
As described in Abstracts of Pensions for Soldiers of the Revolution, War of 1812 and Indian Wars Who Settled the Bluegrass Region of Kentucky Vol. 3 by Annie Walker Burns, edited by Jana Sloan Broglin.