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Captain Thurston, a physician and man of prominence in his locality, recruited a company from Shelby and adjoining counties for service in the War of 1812. Shortly after organization, Captain Thurston's company proceeded under orders and reported to Colonel Presley Gray, who was in command of the Thirteenth Regiment Kentucky Militia. This regiment was under command of Major General Thomas, and shortly after being joined by Captain Thurston's company, moved southward to assist in the defense of New Orleans.