Object No. 22: Old Tip

"Old Tip," the cannon which today holds a place of honor in a landscaped space on the Mason County Courthouse lawn, wasn't always so revered.

A relic of the War of 1812, the cannon was a survivor of the 1811 Battle of Tippecanoe, where it got its nickname.Mason County volunteers served in the 3rd Regiment of the Kentucky Militia under Gen. William Henry Harrison.

How and why it came to be in the city's possession is murky, to say the least.

According to one account, the cannon was used for various celebrations in the city, most commonly on the Fourth of July. But, the account claims, the cannon had a bad habit -- it had a kick that more than once harmed those helping to fire it during said celebrations.

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Once the townsfolk decided "Old Tip" was doing more harm than good, it was relegated to an unseemly fate -- buried upside down in a sidewalk on Second Street in the business district, where it was used as a hitching post when the need arose.

At some point in more recent years, city officials apparently decided the cannon deserved better treatment and it was disinterred from the sidewalk and placed in its current location.

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Editor

Editor and reporter, covering Mason County.

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