Logstown5: Batman’s Ancestral Connection

PITTSBURGH NATIVE MICHAEL KEATON as descendant of Major General “Mad” Anthony Wayne. . . “I’m Batman” Bruce Wayne

Because of this series on Logstown, Batman’s true identity will be revealed.



We’ve reached the point when a guy turns the abandoned Indian town into a large military center to train young men how to fight Indians.

He was Major General “Mad Anthony” Wayne.

You know one of his descendants: Bruce Wayne, the wealthy but gloomy socialite who dons a bat outfit and fights wacky criminals.

Yes, the creators of Batman in 1939 wanted a colonial family connection for their rich hero. They chose “Mad Anthony.”

It’s a big name among buffs of U.S. wars fought for independence and against Indians.

President George Washington chose the general in 1792 to create the Legion of the United States here at Pittsburgh.


New Country Embarrassed

The new nation wasn’t doing too well when it sent troops to sweep Indians out of the Northwest Territory.

Today, that territory includes Ohio, Indiana,  Illinois, Michigan, Wisconsin and northeast Minnesota.

They called it the Northwest Territory because it was Indian land northwest of Pittsburgh and the Ohio River.

Wayne came out of retirement, came to Pittsburgh and came to shake his head. This place was way too crazy.

It was a frontier town with heavy drinking, whoring, gambling and violence.

The general had gotten his nickname for being a bit crazy when battles started during the Revolutionary War, but he wanted to instill discipline and new tactics into the legion.

He chose the term legion to hearken back to the formidable Roman legions that built an empire.

So, Wayne nixed the idea of training troops at Fort Fayette, a newly built facility in what is now Pittsburgh’s Cultural District.

Instead, he chose deserted and isolated Logstown, 18 miles downriver where the boroughs of Ambridge and Baden are today.

In a matter of months, 2,500 young men were living in wooden barracks on a 35-acre, well-defended site that Wayne called Legionville.

It’s not likely he or Washington saw any particular irony in selecting the site of a noted Indian village to train Indian fighters.

To them, the extinction of the people originally on this continent was inevitable, a part of “manifest destiny.”

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