EARLY DAY IN THE NORTHWEST.
MRS. JOHN H. KINZIE,
“If we but knew the exact meaning of the word ‘WAU-BUN,’
we should be happy.” — Critic.
“WAU-BUN — The dawn — the break of day.” — Ojibway Vocabulary.
What follows are the parts of Mrs. Kinzie’s work that apply to the Hočąk (Winnebago) nation.
CHAPTER II. MICHILIMACKINAC.
CHAPTER III. GREEN BAY.
CHAPTER IV. VOYAGE UP FOX RIVER.
CHAPTER V. WINNEBAGO LAKE — MISS FOUR-LEGS.
CHAPTER VII. BUTTE DES MORTS — LAKE PUCKAWAY.
CHAPTER VIII. FORT WINNEBAGO.
CHAPTER X. INDIAN PAYMENT — MRS. WASHINGTON.
CHAPTER XI. LOUISA — DAY-KAU-RAY ON EDUCATION.
CHAPTER XIII. DEPARTURE FROM FORT WINNEBAGO.
CHAPTER XVII. CHICAGO IN 1831.
CHAPTER XVIII. MASSACRE AT CHICAGO.
CHAPTER XX. CAPTIVITY OF J. KINZIE, SEN. — AN AMUSING MISTAKE.
CHAPTER XXV. RETURN JOURNEY, CONTINUED.
CHAPTER XXVI. FOUR-LEGS, THE DANDY.
CHAPTER XXVII. THE CUT-NOSE.
CHAPTER XXVIII. INDIAN CUSTOMS AND DANCES.
CHAPTER XXXII. COMMENCEMENT OF THE SAUK WAR.
CHAPTER XXXIII. FLEEING FROM THE INDIANS.
CHAPTER XXXIV. FORT HOWARD — OUR RETURN HOME.
CHAPTER XXXV. SURRENDER OF WINNEBAGO PRISONERS.
CHAPTER XXXVI. ESCAPE OF THE PRISONERS.
CHAPTER XXXVII. AGATHE — TOMAH.
CHAPTER XXXVIII. CONCLUSION.
(20) Probably few are ignorant of the fact, that all the Indian tribes, with the exception of the Miamis and the Wyandots, had, since the transfer of the old French possessions to the British Crown, maintained a firm alliance (21) with the latter. The independence achieved by the United States did not alter the policy of the natives, nor did our Government succeed in winning or purchasing their friendship. Great Britain, it is true, bid high to retain them. Every year the leading men of the Chippewas, Ottawas, Pottowattamies, Menomonees, Winnebagoes, Sauks, and Foxes, and even still more remote tribes, journeyed from their distant homes to Fort Malden in Upper Canada, to receive their annual amount of presents from their Great Father across the water. It was a master-policy thus to keep them in pay, and had enabled those who practised it to do fearful execution through the aid of such allies in the last war between the two countries.
(23) There was the dwelling of Madame Laframboise, an Ottawa woman, ... a tall and commanding figure, and most dignified deportment. After the death of her husband, who was killed while away at his trading-post by a Winnebago named White Ox, she was accustomed to visit herself the trading-posts, superintend the clerks and engagés, and satisfy herself that the business was carried on in a regular and profitable manner.
(28) The next morning it was still rain! rain! (29) nothing but rain! In spite of it, however, the gentlemen would take a small boat to row to the steamer, to bring up the luggage, not the least important part of that which appertained to us being sundry boxes of silver for paying the annuities to the Winnebagoes at the Portage.
VOYAGE UP FOX RIVER.
(44) "Yes," said my husband, "you must make up your mind to receive a very numerous and well-grown family, consisting of all the Winnebagoes, Pottowattamies, Chippewas, and Ottawas, together with such Sioux, Sacs and Foxes, and Iowas, as have any point to gain in applying to me. By the first-named tribe in virtue of my office, and by the others as a matter of courtesy, I am always addressed as 'father' — you, of course, will be their 'mother.'"
WINNEBAGO LAKE — MISS FOUR-LEGS.
(53) A row of a few miles, on the following morning, brought us to Four-Legs' village,1 at the entrance to Winnebago Lake, a picturesque cluster of Indian huts, spread around on a pretty green glade, and shaded by fine lofty trees.
We were now fairly in the Winnebago country, and I soon learned that the odd-sounding name of the place was derived from the principal chief of the nation, whose residence it was. The inhabitants were absent, having, in all probability, departed to their wintering grounds. We here took leave of our friend Wish-tay-yun, at the borders of whose country we had now arrived. "Bon-jour, Chon!" (John:) "bon-jour, maman." A hearty shake of the hand completed his adieu, as we pushed off into the lake, and left him smoking his kin-nee-kin-nick2 and waiting until the spirit should move him to take up his long Indian trot towards his home in the Menomonee country.
With him our sunshine seemed to have departed. The skies, hitherto so bright and serene, became overcast, and, instead of the charming voyage we had anticipated over the silver waters of the lake, we were obliged to keep ourselves housed under our canvas shelter, only peeping out (54) now and then to catch a glimpse of the surrounding prospect through the pouring rain.
It was what might have been expected on an autumnal day, but we were unreasonable enough to find it tedious; so, to beguile the time and lessen my disappointment, my husband related to me some incidents of his early history, apropos to the subject of "Four-Legs."
While he was living at Prairie du Chien, in the employ of the American Fur Company, the chiefs and other Indians from the Upper Mississippi used frequently to come to the place to sell their furs and peltries, and to purchase merchandise, ammunition, trinkets, etc.
As is usual with all who are not yet acclimated, he was seized with chills and fever. One day, while suffering with an unusually severe access of the latter, a chief of the Four-Legs family, a brother to the one before mentioned, came in to the Company's warehouse to trade. There is no ceremony or restraint among the Indians: so, hearing that Shaw-nee-aw-kee was sick, Four-Legs instantly made his way to him, to offer his sympathy and prescribe the proper remedies.
Every one who has suffered from ague and the intense fever that succeeds it, knows how insupportable is the protracted conversation of an inconsiderate person, and will readily believe that the longer Four-Legs continued his pratings the higher mounted the fever of the patient, and the more intolerable became the pain of head, back, and limbs.
At length the old man arrived at the climax of what he had to say. "It was not good for a young man, suffering with sickness, and away from his family, to be without a home and a wife. He had a nice daughter at home, handsome and healthy, a capital nurse, the best hand in all the tribe at trapping beaver and musk-rats. He was (55) coming down again in the spring, and he would bring her with him, and Shaw-nee-aw-kee should see that he had told no falsehood about her. Should he go now, and bring his daughter the next time he came?"
Stunned with his importunate babble, and anxious only for rest and quiet, poor Shaw-nee-aw-kee eagerly assented, and the chief took his departure.
So nearly had his disorder been aggravated to delirium, that the young man forgot entirely, for a time, the interview and the proposal which had been made him. But it was recalled to his memory some months after, when Four-Legs made his appearance, bringing with him a squaw of mature age, and a very Hecate for ugliness. She carried on her shoulders an immense pack of furs, which, approaching with her awkward criss-cross gait, she threw at his feet, thus marking, by an Indian custom, her sense of the relation that existed between them.
The conversation with her father now flashed across his mind, and he began to be sensible that he had got into a position that it would require some skill to extricate himself from.
He bade one of the young clerks take up the pack and carry it into the magazine where the furs were stored; then he coolly went on talking with the chief about indifferent matters.
Miss Four-Legs sat awhile with a sulky, discontented air; at length she broke out, —
"Humph! he seems to take no more notice of me than if I was nobody!"
He again turned to the clerk. — "Give her a calico shirt and half a dozen bread-tickets."
This did not dissipate the gloom on her countenance. Finding that he must commence the subject, the father says, —
(56) "Well, I have brought you my daughter, according to our agreement. How do you like her?"
"Ah, yes — she is a very nice young woman, and would make a first-rate wife, I have no doubt. But do you know a very strange thing has happened since you were here? Our father, Governor Cass,3 has sent for me to come to Detroit, that he may send me among the Wyandottes and other nations to learn their customs and manners. Now, if I go, as I shall be obliged to do, I shall be absent two or three years, — perhaps four. What then? Why, the people will say, Shaw-nee-aw-kee has married Four-Legs' daughter, and then has hated her and run away from her, and so everybody will laugh at her, and she will be ashamed. It will be better to take some good, valuable presents, blankets, guns, etc., and to marry her to one of her own people, who will always stay by her and take care of her."
The old man was shrewd enough to see that it was wisest to make the best bargain he could. I have no doubt it cost a round sum to settle the matter to the satisfaction of the injured damsel, though I have never been able to ascertain how much. This I know, that the young gentleman took care not to make his next bargain while in a fit of the ague. The lady up on the Mississippi is called, in derision, by his name to this day.
About midway of the lake we passed Garlic Island — a lovely spot, deserving of a more attractive name.a It belonged, together with the village on the opposite shore, to "Wild Cat," a fat, jolly, good-natured fellow, by no means the formidable animal his name would imply.
He and his band were absent, like their neighbors of (57) Four-Legs' village, so there was nothing to vary the monotony of our sail. It was too wet to sing, and the men, although wrapped in their overcoats, looked like drowned chickens. They were obliged to ply their oars with unusual vigor to keep themselves warm and comfortable, and thus probably felt less than we, the dulness and listlessness of the cold, rainy, October day.
Towards evening the sun shone forth. We had passed into the Fox River, and were just entering that beautiful little expanse known as Butte des Morts Lake, at the farther extremity of which we were to encamp for the night.
The water along its shores was green with the fields of wild rice, the gathering of which, just at this season, is an important occupation of the Indian women. They push their canoes into the thick masses of the rice, bend it forward over the side with their paddles, and then beat the ripe husks off the stalks into a cloth spread in the canoe. After this, it is rubbed to separate the grain from the husk, and fanned in the open air. It is then put in their cordage bags and packed away for winter use. The grain is longer and more slender than the Carolina rice — it is of a greenish-olive color, and, although it forms a pleasant article of food, it is far from being particularly nutritive. The Indians are fond of it in the form of soup, with the addition of birds or venison.
BUTTE DES MORTS — LAKE PUCKAWAY.
(62) Among the French inhabitants of the upper country, each tribe of Indians has a particular appellation, descriptive of some peculiarity of either their habits or their personal (63) appearance. Thus, the Chippewas, from their agility, are denominated "Sauteurs," or Jumpers; the Ottawas, the "Courtes-oreilles," or Short-ears. The Menomonees, from the wild rice so abundant in their country, are called "Folles Avoines;" — the Winnebagoes, from their custom of wearing the fur of a polecat on their legs when equipped for war, are termed "les Puans;" — the Pottowattamies, from their uncleanly habits, "les Poux;" — the Foxes are "les Renards," etc. etc.
Hence you will never hear a French or half-breed resident of the country mention an Indian in any other style. "Such a person is a 'Court-oreille.'" "Is that woman a 'Winnebago'?" "No, she is a 'Folle Avoine.'" In this manner a stranger is somewhat puzzled at first to classify the acquaintances he forms.
All the native friends with whom we were here surrounded were "les Puans," or, to use their own euphonious appellation, the "Ho-tshung-rahs."
(70) The woods [around Ft. Winnebago] were now brilliant with the many tints of autumn, and the scene around was further enlivened by groups of Indians, in all directions, and their lodges, which were scattered here and there, in the vicinity of the Agency buildings. On the low grounds might be seen the white tents of the traders, already prepared to furnish winter supplies to the Indians, in exchange for the annuity money they were about to receive.
A great concourse had been for many days assembling in anticipation of the payment, which was expected to take place as soon as Shaw-nee-aw-kee should arrive with the silver.
Preparatory to this event, the great chief of the nation, Four-Legs, whose village we had passed at the entrance to Winnebago Lake, had thought proper to take a little carouse, as is too apt to be the custom when the savages come into the neighborhood of a sutler's establishment. In the present instance, the facilities for a season of intoxication had been augmented by the presence on the ground of some traders, too regardless of the very stringent laws prohibiting the sale of liquor to the Indians.
Poor Four-Legs could not stand this full tide of prosperity. Unchecked by the presence of his Father, the agent, he carried his indulgence to such excess that he fell a victim in the course of a few days. His funeral had been celebrated with unusual pomp the day before our arrival, and great was my disappointment at finding myself too late to witness all the ceremonies.
(71) His body, according to their custom, having been wrapped in a blanket, and placed in a rude coffin, along with his guns, tomahawk, pipes, and a quantity of tobacco, had been carried to the most elevated point of the hill opposite the fort, followed by an immense procession of his people, whooping, beating their drums, howling, and making altogether what is emphatically termed a "pow-wow."
After the interment of the body, a stake was planted at its head, on which was painted in vermilion a series of hieroglyphics, descriptive of the great deeds and events of his life. The whole was then surrounded with pickets of the trunks of the tamarack-trees, and hither the friends would come for many successive days to renew the expression of their grief, and to throw over the grave tobacco and other offerings to the Great Spirit.
It was a consolation to find that, although delayed, we were yet in time to furnish a quantity of white cotton for a flag to wave over the grave, and also to pay a considerable bill at the sutler's for the different articles that had been found necessary for the funeral parade — it being a duty expected of their Father to bury the dead suitably.
The funeral observances in honor of the chief had not yet ceased. Throughout the day, and all that night, the sound of instruments, mingled with doleful lamentations, and with the discordant whoops and yells of those in a partial state of intoxication, filled the air, and disturbed our repose. To these were added occasionally the plaintive sounds of the Indian flute, upon which the young savage plays when he is in love. Grief and whiskey had made their hearts tender, and the woods resounded to their melancholy strains.
Early the following morning, before I left my room, I was startled by the sounds of lamentation and woe proceeding from the adjoining apartment. On entering it, I (72) found several squaws seated on the floor, with downcast looks expressive of condolence and sympathy, while in their midst sat a little ugly woman, in tattered garments, with blackened face and dishevelled hair, sobbing and wailing bitterly.
Not doubting they were the family of the deceased chief, I was quite troubled at my inability to express, otherwise than by gestures, my participation in their sorrows.
Unacquainted as I was with their customs, I took it for granted from their wretched appearance that poverty and destitution formed one of the sources of their affliction. One of the party, at least, seemed in the very depths of misery. "Can it be possible," said I to myself, "that this poor creature has only these scanty rags to cover her?"
Stepping back to my own room, I brought out a pretty calico wrapper, which I presented to the little, dirty, blackened object. She took it, and commenced a fresh series of sobbing and sighing. I made signs to her to put it on, opening it and explaining to her how it was to be worn, and recommending to her, by gestures, to lose no time in making herself more comfortable.
At this, the other women burst into a laugh.
"Very mal-a-propos," thought I, "and somewhat unfeeling." At that moment my husband, entering, explained to me that the chief mourner was Madame Four-Legs, the widow; that she had undoubtedly a comfortable wardrobe at home, but that it was part of the etiquette of mourning to go for a season with neglected persons and blackened faces. All this was told me in the intervals of shaking hands, and offering and receiving condolences in the most uncouth, guttural language I had ever heard. Their Father at length dismissed them, with a promise of some (73) presents to help dry up their tears. It must not be inferred that the grief of the poor little widow was not sincere. On the contrary, she was greatly attached to her husband, and had had great influence not only with him but with the nation at large. She was a Fox woman, and spoke the Chippewa, which is the court language among all the tribes, so that she was often called upon to act as interpreter, and had, in fact, been in the habit of accompanying her husband, and assisting him by her counsels upon all occasions. She was a person of great shrewdness and judgment, and, as I afterwards experienced, of strong and tenacious affections.
After breakfast I received a visit from the principal chiefs, who had put on their best of apparel and paint to receive their new mother.
There was Naw-kaw, or Kar-ray-mau-nee, "the Walking Turtle," now the principal chief of the nation, a stalwart Indian, with a broad, pleasant countenance, the great peculiarity of which was an immense under lip, hanging nearly to his chin. There was the old Day-kau-ray, the most noble, dignified, and venerable of his own, or indeed of any tribe. His fine Roman countenance, rendered still more striking by his bald head, with one solitary tuft of long silvery hair neatly tied and falling back on his shoulders; his perfectly neat, appropriate dress, almost without ornament, and his courteous demeanor, never laid aside under any circumstances, all combined to give him the highest place in the consideration of all who knew him. It will hereafter be seen that his traits of character were not less grand and striking than were his personal appearance and deportment.
There was Black-Wolf, whose lowering, surly face was well described by his name. The fierce expression of his countenance was greatly heightened by the masses of (74) heavy black hair hanging round it, quite contrary to the usual fashion among the Winnebagoes. They, for the most part, remove a portion of their hair, the remainder of which is drawn to the back of the head, clubbed and ornamented with beads, ribbons, cock's feathers, or, if they are so entitled, an eagle's feather for every scalp taken from an enemy.
There was Talk-English, a remarkably handsome, powerful young Indian, who received his name in the following manner. He was one of a party of sixteen Winnebagoes who had, by invitation, accompanied their Agent and Major Forsyth (or the Chippewa, as he was called) on a visit to the President at Washington, the year previous.
On the journey, the question naturally addressed to them by people not familiar with Western Indians was, —
"Do you talk English?"
The young fellow, being very observant, came to his Father. "What do they mean by this? Everybody says to me, talk English!"
The Agent interpreted the words to him. "Ah, very well."
The next place they arrived at was Lockport, in the State of New York. Jumping off the canal-boat upon the lock, he ran up to the first man he met, and, thrusting forward his face, cried out, "Talk Angel?"
"Yes," said the man; "do you talk English?"
From that time forward he always bore the name of Talk-English, and was registered on the pay-rolls by a title of which he was not a little proud.
Hoo-wau-ne-kah, "the Little Elk," was another of the distinguished men of the tribe. He had likewise been at Washington. Henry Clay, when he visited them, after (75) looking carefully at the countenances and bearing of all the members of the deputation, had indicated him as the one possessing the greatest talent; and he was greatly pleased when informed that he was the principal orator of the nation, and decidedly superior in abilities to any other individual of the tribe.
Wild-Cat, our Indian Falstaff in all save the cowardice and falsehood, I have already mentioned.
Then there was Kau-ray-kaw-saw-kaw, "the White Crow," a Rock River Indian, who afterwards distinguished himself as the friend of the whites during the Sauk war. He was called by the French "le Borgne," from having lost an eye; and the black silk handkerchief which he wore drooping over the left side of his face to disguise the blemish, taken with his native costume, gave him a very singular appearance.
There was a nephew of the defunct chief Four-Legs, to whom with justice was given, by both whites and Indians, the appellation of "the Dandy." When out of mourning his dress was of the most studied and fanciful character. A shirt (when he condescended to wear any) of the brightest colors, ornamented with innumerable rows of silver brooches set thickly together; never less than two pairs of silver arm-bands; leggings and moccasins of the most elaborate embroidery in ribbons and porcupine-quills; everything that he could devise in the shape of ornament hanging to his club of hair behind; a feather fan in one hand, and in the other a mirror, in which he contemplated himself every five minutes; these, with the variety and brilliancy of the colors upon his face, the suitable choice and application of which occupied no small portion of the hours allotted to his toilet, made up the equipment of young Four-Legs.
This devotion to dress and appearance seemed not (76) altogether out of place in a youthful dandy; but we had likewise an old one of the same stamp. Pawnee Blanc, or the White Pawnee, surpassed his younger competitor, if possible, in attention to his personal attractions.
Upon the present occasion he appeared in all his finery, and went through the customary salutations with an air of solemn dignity, then walked, as did the others, into the parlor (for I had received them in the hall), where they all seated themselves upon the floor. Fortunately, the room was now bare of furniture, but "alas!" thought I, "for my pretty carpet, if this is to be the way they pay their respects to me!" I watched the falling of the ashes from their long pipes, and the other inconveniences of the use of tobacco, or kin-nee-kin-nick, with absolute dismay.
The visit of the chiefs was succeeded by one from the interpreter and his wife, with all the Canadian and half-breed women, whose husbands found employment at the Agency or at the American Fur Company's establishment.
By this time my piano had been taken from its case and set up in our quarters. To our great joy, we found it entirely uninjured. Thanks to the skill of Nunns and Clark, not a note was out of tune.
The women, to whom it was an entire novelty, were loud in their exclamations of wonder and delight.
"Eh-h-h! regardez donc! Quelles inventions! Quelles merveilles!"4
One, observing the play of my fingers reflected in the nameboard, called in great exultation to her companions. She had discovered, as she thought, the hidden machinery by which the sounds were produced, and was not a little mortified when she was undeceived.
INDIAN PAYMENT — MRS. WASHINGTON.
(80) There were two divisions of the Winnebago Indians, one of which was paid by the Agent, at the Portage, the other at Prairie du Chien, by General Street. The first, between four and five thousand in number, received, according to treaty stipulations, fifteen thousand dollars annually, besides a considerable amount of presents, and a certain number of rations of bread and pork, to be issued in times of emergency throughout the year.
The principal villages of this division of the tribe were at Lake Winnebago, Green and Fox Lakes, the Barribault [Baraboo], Mud Lake, the Four Lakes, Kosh-ko-nong, and Turtle Creek. Messengers were dispatched, at or before the arrival of the annuity-money, to all the different villages, to notify the heads of families or lodges to assemble at "the Portage."
When arrived, the masters of families, under their different (81) chiefs, give in their names, and the number in their lodges, to be registered. As, in paying, a certain sum of money is apportioned to each individual, it is, of course, an object to the head of a lodge to make the number registered as great as possible. Each one brings his little bundle of sticks, and presents it to the Agent to register. Sometimes a dialogue like the following occurs:
"How many have you in your lodge?"
The Indian carefully, and with great ceremony, counts his bundle of sticks — "Fifteen"
"How many men?"
"Two." The Agent lays aside two sticks
"How many women?"
"Three." Three more sticks are separated.
"How many children?"
"Eight." Eight sticks are added to the heap.
"What is the meaning of these two sticks that remain?"
The culprit, whose arithmetic has not served him to carry out his deception, disappears amid the shouts and jeers of his companions, who are always well pleased at the detection of any roguery in which they have had no share.
The young officers generally assisted in counting out and delivering the money at these payments, and it was no unusual thing, as the last band came up, for the chiefs to take a quantity of silver out of the box and request their Father to pay his friends for their trouble, seeming really disturbed at his refusal. In this, as in almost every instance, we see the native courtesy and politeness, which are never lost sight of among them. If a party comes to their Father to beg for provisions, and food is offered them, however hungry they may be, each waits patiently until one of the company makes an equal distribution of (82) the whole, and then, taking his share, eats it quietly, with the greatest moderation. I never saw this rule violated, save in one instance.
Our friend, Pawnee Blanc, the Old Dandy, once came with a party of Indians, requesting permission to dance for us in the open space before the door. It was a warm, dusty afternoon, and as our friends grew heated and fatigued with the violent and long-continued exercise, a pitcher of raspberry negus was prepared and sent out to them. Pawnee received the pitcher and tumbler, and, pouring the latter about half full, gave it to the first of the circle, then filled the same for the next, and so on, until it suddenly occurred to him to look into the pitcher. What he saw there determined his course of action; so, setting the tumbler upon the ground, he raised the pitcher with both hands to his lips and gave a hearty pull, after which he went on, giving less and less, until he was called to have the pitcher replenished. All present agreed it was the only instance they had ever witnessed, of an Indian's appearing afraid of getting less of a thing than his share.
During the payment a good many kegs of whiskey find their way into the lodges of the Indians, notwithstanding the watchfulness of both officers and Agent. Where there is a demand there will always be a supply, let the legal prohibitions be what they may. The last day of the payment is, invariably, one of general carousing.
When the men begin their frolic, the women carefully gather all the guns, knives, tomahawks, and weapons of every description, and secrete them, that as little mischief as possible may be done in the absence of all restraint and reason. I am sorry to record that our little friend, Pawnee Blanc, was greatly addicted to the pleasures of the bottle.
(83) Among the presents for the chiefs, which Shaw-nee-aw-kee had brought from the East, was a trunk of blue cloth coats, trimmed with broad gold lace, and a box of round black hats, ornamented in a similar manner. All who are familiar with Indians, of whatever tribe, will have observed that their first step towards civilization, whether in man or woman, is mounting a man's hat, decorated with tinsel; ribbons, or feathers. Pawnee was among the happy number remembered in the distribution; so, donning at once his new costume, and tying a few additional bunches of gay-colored ribbons to a long spear, that was always his baton of ceremony, he came at once, followed by an admiring train, chiefly of women, to pay me a visit of state.
The solemn gravity of his countenance, as he motioned away those who would approach too near and finger his newly-received finery — the dignity with which he strutted along, edging this way and that to avoid any possible contact from homely, every-day wardrobes — augured well for a continuance of propriety and self-respect, and a due consideration of the good opinion of all around. But, alas for Pawnee! late in the day we saw him assisted towards his lodge by two stout young Indians, who had pulled him out of a ditch, his fine coat covered with mud, his hat battered and bruised, his spear shorn of its gay streamers, and poor Pawnee himself weeping and uttering all the doleful lamentations of a tipsy Indian.
Among the women with whom I early made acquaintance was the wife of Wau-kaun-zee-kah, the Yellow Thunder. She had accompanied her husband, who was one of the deputation to visit the President, and from that time forth she had been known as "the Washington woman." She had a pleasant, old-acquaintance sort of air in greeting (84) me, as much as to say, "You and I have seen something of the world." No expression of surprise or admiration escaped her lips, as her companions, with childlike, laughing simplicity, exclaimed and clapped their hands at the different wonderful objects I showed them. Her deportment said plainly, "Yes, yes, my children, I have seen all these things before." It was not until I put to her ear a tropical shell, of which I had a little cabinet, and she heard its murmuring sound, that she laid aside her apathy of manner. She poked her finger into the opening to get at the animal within, shook it violently, then raised it to her ear again, and finally burst into a hearty laugh, and laid it down, acknowledging, by her looks, that this was beyond her comprehension.
I had one shell of peculiar beauty — my favorite in the whole collection — a small conch, covered with rich, dark veins. Each of the visitors successively took up this shell, and by words and gestures expressed her admiration, evidently showing that she had an eye for beauty — this was on the occasion of the parting visit of my red daughters.
Shortly after the payment had been completed, and the Indians had left, I discovered that my valued shell was missing from the collection. Could it be that one of the squaws had stolen it? It was possible — they would occasionally, though rarely, do such things under the influence of strong temptation. I tried to recollect which, among the party, looked most likely to have been the culprit. It could not have been the Washington woman — she was partly civilized, and knew better.
A few weeks afterwards Mrs. Yellow Thunder again made her appearance, and carefully unfolding a gay-colored chintz shawl, which she carried rolled up in her hand, she produced the shell, and laid it on the table before me. I did not know whether to show, by my countenance, displeasure at the trick she had played me, or joy at receiving my treasure back again, but at length decided that it was the best policy to manifest no emotion whatever.
She prolonged her visit until my husband's return, and he then questioned her about the matter.
"She had taken the shell to her village, to show to some of her people, who did not come to the payment."
"Why had she not asked her mother's leave before carrying it away?"
"Because she saw that her mother liked the shell, and she was afraid she would say, No."
This was not the first instance in which Madame Washington had displayed the shrewdness which was a predominant trait in her character. During the visit of the Indians to the Eastern cities, they were taken to various exhibitions, museums, menageries, theatres, etc. It did not escape their observation that some silver was always paid before entrance, and they inquired the reason. It was explained to them. The woman brightened up, as if struck with an idea.
"How much do you pay for each one?"
Her Father told her.
"How do you say that in English?"
"Two shinnin — humph" (good).
The next day, when, as usual, visitors began to flock to the rooms where the Indians were sojourning, the woman and a young Indian, her confederate, took their station by the door, which they kept closed. When any one knocked, the door was cautiously opened, and the woman, extending her hand, exclaimed — "Two shinnin."
This was readily paid in each instance, and the game went on, until she had accumulated a considerable sum. But this did not satisfy her. At the first attempt of a (86) visitor to leave the room, the door was held close, as before, the hand was extended, and "Two shinnin" again met his ear. He tried to explain that, having paid for his entrance, he must go out free. With an innocent shake of the head, "Two shinnin," was all the English she could understand.
The Agent, who had entered a short time before, and who, overhearing the dialogue, sat laughing behind his newspaper, waiting to see how it would all end, now came forward and interfered, and the guests were permitted to go forth without a further contribution.
The good woman was moreover admonished that it was far from the custom of white people to tax their friends and visitors in this manner, and that the practice must be laid aside in future.
Another instance of the disposition of the Indians to avail themselves of all the goods that fortune throws in their way, was the following:
Upon the same trip, while passing through Ohio, one of the party inquired of the Agent, —
"Do you pay for all those provisions that are set before us at the hotels?"
"Yes. Why do you ask?"
"Nothing: I thought you perhaps paid for just what we ate of them."
At the next stopping-place a fine breakfast was set upon the table, of which, as usual, they partook plentifully. Just as they had finished, the horn sounded for all to take their places in the stage-coaches. Each sprang to his feet. One seized the plates of biscuits and poured them into the corner of his blanket; another the remains of a pair of chickens; a third emptied the sugar-bowls; each laid hold of what was nearest him, and in a trice nothing was left upon the table but the empty plates and dishes. The landlord (87) and waiters, meanwhile, stood laughing and enjoying the trick as much as any of the spectators.
Upon another occasion, their Father had endeavored to impress upon them the unseemliness of throwing their refuse pieces, bones, and fragments of food about on the table-cloth, pointing out to them the orderly manner of the whites at table, and the propriety of keeping everything neat and nice around them.
At their next meal, they were served first with a chicken-pie, of which they ate very heartily, and the accumulation of bones on their plates was very abundant. Presently another and more favorite dish appeared, — a fine, large, roasted turkey. A gentleman sat near, and was evidently preparing to carve it. No time was to be lost. What was to be done with the bones? They looked around in some perplexity. A large apple-pie was standing near. The most eager drew it towards him, and quick as thought all the bones were deposited upon it, while, with a triumphant laugh at the happy idea, he coolly transferred the bird to his own dish, and proceeded to distribute it among his companions. The amazed stranger soon joined in the laugh at the unceremonious manner in which his share of the dinner had vanished.
LOUISA — DAY-KAU-RAY ON EDUCATION.
(94) At an early hour the next morning I had quite a levee of the Ho-tshung-rah matrons. They seated themselves in a circle on the floor, and I was sorry to observe that the application of a little soap and water to their blankets had formed no part of their holiday preparations. There being no one to interpret, I thought I would begin the conversation in a way intelligible to themselves, so I brought out of the sideboard a china dish, filled with the nice brown crullers, over which I had grated, according to custom, a goodly quantity of white sugar. I handed it to the first of the circle. She took the dish from my hand, and, deliberately pouring all the cakes into the corner of her blanket, returned it to me empty. "She must be a meat voracious person," thought I; "but I will manage better the next time." I refilled the dish, and approached the next one, taking care to keep a fast hold of it as I offered the contents, of which I supposed she would modestly take one. Not so, however. She scooped out the whole with her two hands, and, like the former, bestowed them in her blanket. My sense of politeness revolted (95) at handing them out one by one, as we do to children, so I sat down to deliberate what was to be done, for evidently the supply would not long answer such an ample demand, and there would be more visitors anon.
While I was thus perplexed, those who had received the cakes commenced a distribution, and the whole number was equitably divided among the company. But I observed they did not eat them. They passed their fingers over the grated sugar, looked in each other's faces, and muttered in low tones — there was evidently something they did not understand. Presently one more adventurous than the rest wet her fingers, and taking up a few grains of the sugar put it cautiously to her mouth.
"Tah-nee-zhoo-rah!" (Sugar!) was her delighted exclamation, and they all broke out into a hearty laugh. It is needless to say that the cakes disappeared with all the celerity they deemed compatible with good-breeding. Never having seen any sugar but the brown or yellow maple, they had supposed the white substance to be salt, and for that reason had hesitated to taste it.
Their visit was prolonged until Shaw-nee-aw-kee made his appearance, and then, having been made happy by their various gifts, they all took their departure.
About this time, Mr. Kinzie received a letter from Colonel Richard M. Johnson, of Kentucky. This gentleman had interested himself greatly in a school established in that State for the education of Indian youths and children. The purport of his letter was to request the Agent to use every endeavor to induce the Winnebagoes not only to send their children to this institution for their education, but also (what was still more important) to set apart a portion of their annuity-money to assist in sustaining it.
There happened to be, at this holiday season, a number of the chiefs in the neighborhood of the Portage, and a (96) messenger was sent to convene them all at the house of Paquette, the interpreter, that their Father might hold a talk with them.
On the day appointed they all assembled. The subject-matter of the letter was laid before them, and all the advantages of civilization and education duly set forth — the benefits which would arise to their nation, if even a small portion of the younger members could be well taught by the whites, and then return to their tribe, to instruct them in the learning, the arts, manufactures, and habits of civilized life. To each paragraph, as it was uttered to them, they responded with a unanimous "Humph!" (Good!)
When their Father's address was ended, Day-kau-ray, the oldest and most venerable among the chiefs, rose and spoke as follows:
"Father, — The Great Spirit made the white man and the Indian. He did not make them alike. He gave the white man a heart to love peace, and the arts of a quiet life. He taught him to live in towns, to build houses, to make books, to learn all things that would make him happy and prosperous in the way of life appointed him. To the red man the Great Spirit gave a different character. He gave him a love of the woods, of a free life, of hunting and fishing, of making war with his enemies and taking scalps. The white man does not live like the Indian — it is not his nature. Neither does the Indian love to live like the white man — the Great Spirit did not make him so.
"Father, — We do not wish to do anything contrary to the will of the Great Spirit. If he had made us with white skins, and characters like the white men, then we would send our children to this school to be taught like the white children.
"Father, — We think that if the Great Spirit had wished (97) us to be like the whites, he would have made us so. As he has not seen fit to do so, we believe he would be displeased with us, to try and make ourselves different from what he thought good.
"Father, — I have nothing more to say. This is what we think. If we change our minds, we will let you know."
It will be seen from these remarks of Day-kau-ray that the Indians entertain a conviction that the Great Spirit himself teaches the white man the arts and sciences, and since he has given the red man no instruction in these branches, it would be unbecoming in him to attempt to acquire them in an irregular manner.
DEPARTURE FROM FORT WINNEBAGO.
(109) March 9th . — Our journey this day led us past the first of the Four Lakes. Scattered along its banks was an encampment of Winnebagoes. They greeted their Father with vociferous joy —"Bon-jour, bon-jour, Shaw-nee-aw-kee," "Hee-nee-kar-ray-kay-noo?" (how do you do?)
To this succeeded the usual announcement, "Wys-kap-rah tshoonsh-koo-nee-noh!" (I have no bread.)
This is their form of begging; but we could not afford to be generous, for the uncertainty of obtaining a supply, should our own be exhausted, obliged us to observe the strictest economy.
How beautiful the entrapment looked in the morning sun! The matted lodges, with the blue smoke curling from their tops — the trees and bushes powdered with a (110) light snow which had fallen through the night — the lake, shining and sparkling, almost at our feet — even the Indians, in their peculiar costume, adding to the picturesque!
I was sorry to leave it, as we were compelled to do, in all haste, Souris, the pack-horse, having taken it into his head to decamp while we were in conversation with our red friends.
CHICAGO IN 1831.
(154) By degrees more remote trading-posts were established by [the Elder Kinzie], all contributing to the parent one at Chicago; at Milwaukie with the Menomonees; at Rock River with the Winnebagoes and the Pottowattamies; on the Illinois River and Kankakee with the Pottowattamies of the Prairies, and with the Kickapoos in what was called "Le Large," being the widely extended district afterwards erected into Sangamon County.
MASSACRE AT CHICAGO.
[The following is an account of the "Massacre at Chicago," that took place in 1812, at a time when John Kinzie was a boy.]
(161) The officers in [Fort Dearborn] at this period were Captain Heald, the commanding officer, Lieutenant Helm, the son-in-law of Mr. Kinzie, and Ensign Ronan — the two last were very young men — and the surgeon, Dr. Van Voorhees.
The command numbered about seventy-five men; very few of whom were effective.
A constant and friendly intercourse had been maintained between these troops and the Indians. It is true that the principal men of the Pottowattamie nation, like those of most other tribes, went yearly to Fort Malden, in Canada, to receive a large amount of presents, with which the British Government had, for many years, been in the habit of purchasing their alliance; and it was well known that many of the Pottowattamies, as well as Winnebagoes, had been engaged with the Ottawas and Shawnees at the battle of Tippecanoe, the preceding autumn; yet, as the principal chiefs of all the bands in the neighborhood appeared to be on the most amicable terms with the Americans, no interruption of their harmony was at any time anticipated.
After the 15th of August, however, many circumstances were recollected that might have opened the eyes of the whites, had they not been lulled in a fatal security. One instance in particular may be mentioned.
In the spring preceding the destruction of the fort, two Indians of the Calumet band [of the Potawatomi] came to the fort on a visit to the commanding officer. As they passed through the (162) quarters, they saw Mrs. Heald and Mrs. Helm playing at battledoor.
Turning to the interpreter, one of them, Nau-non-gee, remarked, "The white chiefs' wives are amusing themselves very much; it will not be long before they are hoeing in our corn-fields!"
This was considered at the time an idle threat, or, at most, an ebullition of jealous feeling at the contrast between the situation of their own women and that of the "white chiefs' wives." Some months after, how bitterly was it remembered!
The farm at Lee's Place was occupied by a Mr. White and three persons employed by him in the care of the farm.
In the afternoon of the day on which our narrative commences, a party of ten or twelve Indians, dressed and painted, arrived at the house, and, according to the custom among savages, entered and seated themselves without ceremony.
Something in their appearance and manner excited the suspicions of one of the family, a Frenchman, who remarked, "I do not like the appearance of these Indians — they are none of our folks. I know by their dress and paint that they are not Pottowattamies."
Another of the family, a discharged soldier, then said to the boy who was present, "If that is the case, we had better get away from them if we can. Say nothing; but do as you see me do."
As the afternoon was far advanced, the soldier walked leisurely towards the canoes, of which there were two tied near the bank. Some of the Indians inquired where he was going. He pointed to the cattle which were standing among the haystacks on the opposite bank, and made (163) signs that they must go and fodder them, and then they should return and get their supper.
He got into one canoe, and the boy into the other. The stream was narrow, and they were soon across. When they had gained the opposite side, they pulled some hay for the cattle — made a show of collecting them — and when they had gradually made a circuit, so that their movements were concealed by the haystacks, they took to the woods, which were close at hand, and made for the fort.
They had run about a quarter of a mile, when they heard the discharge of two guns successively, which they supposed to have been levelled at the companions they had left behind.
They stopped not nor stayed until they arrived opposite Burns's,5 where, as before related, they called across to advertise the family of their danger, and then hastened on to the fort.
It now occurred to those who had secured their own safety, that the family of Burns was at this moment exposed to the most imminent peril. The question was, who would hazard his own life to bring them to a place of safety? A gallant young officer, Ensign Ronan, volunteered, with a party of five or six soldiers, to go to their rescue.
They ascended the river in a scow, and took the mother, with her infant of scarcely a day old, upon her bed to the boat, in which they carefully conveyed her and the other members of the family to the fort.
A party of soldiers, consisting of a corporal and six men, had that afternoon obtained leave to go up the river to fish.
(164) They had not returned when the fugitives from Lee's Place arrived at the fort, and, fearing that they might encounter the Indians, the commanding officer ordered a cannon to be fired, to warn them of danger.
They were at the time about two miles above Lee's Place. Hearing the signal, they took the hint, put out their torches (for it was now night), and dropped down the river towards the garrison, as silently as possible. It will be remembered that the unsettled state of the country since the battle of Tippecanoe, the preceding November, had rendered every man vigilant, and the slightest alarm was an admonition to "beware of the Indians."
When the fishing-party reached Lee's Place, it was proposed to stop and warn the inmates to be upon their guard, as the signal from the fort indicated danger of some kind. All was still as death around the house. They groped their way along, and as the corporal jumped over the small enclosure he placed his hand upon the dead body of a man. By the sense of touch he soon ascertained that the head was without a scalp, and otherwise mutilated. The faithful dog of the murdered man stood guarding the lifeless remains of his master.
The tale was now told. The men retreated to their canoes, and reached the fort unmolested about eleven o'clock at night. The next morning a party of the citizens and soldiers volunteered to go to Lee's Place, to learn further the fate of its occupants. The body of Mr. White was found pierced by two balls, and with eleven stabs in the breast. The Frenchman, as already described, lay dead, with his dog still beside him. Their bodies were brought to the fort and buried in its immediate vicinity.
It was subsequently ascertained, from traders out in the Indian country, that the perpetrators of this bloody deed were a party of Winnebagoes, who had come into this (165) neighborhood to "take some white scalps." Their plan had been, to proceed down the river from Lee's Place, and kill every white man without the walls of the fort. Hearing, however, the report of the cannon, and not knowing what it portended, they thought it best to remain satisfied with this one exploit, and forthwith retreated to their homes on Rock River.
The inhabitants outside the fort, consisting of a few discharged soldiers and some families of half-breeds, now intrenched themselves in the Agency House. This stood west of the fort, between the pickets and the river, and distant about twenty rods from the former.
It was an old-fashioned log building, with a hall running through the centre, and one large room on each side. Piazzas extended the whole length of the building in front and rear. These were planked up, for greater security, port-holes were cut, and sentinels posted at night.
As the enemy were believed to be lurking still in the neighborhood, or, emboldened by former success, likely to return at any moment, an order was issued prohibiting any soldier or citizen from leaving the vicinity of the garrison without a guard.
One night a sergeant and private, who were out on a patrol, came suddenly upon a party of Indians in the pasture adjoining the esplanade. The sergeant fired his piece, and both retreated towards the fort. Before they could reach it, an Indian threw his tomahawk, which missed the sergeant and struck a wagon standing near. The sentinel from the block-house immediately fired, and with effect, while the men got safely in. The next morning it was ascertained, from traces of blood to a considerable distance into the prairie, and from the appearance of a body having been laid among the long grass, that some execution had been done.
(166) On another occasion the enemy entered the esplanade to steal horses. Not finding them in the stable, as they had expected, they made themselves amends for their disappointment by stabbing all the sheep in the stable and then letting them loose. The poor animals flocked towards the fort. This gave the alarm — the garrison was aroused — parties were sent out, but the marauders escaped unmolested.
CAPTIVITY OF J. KINZIE, SEN. — AN AMUSING MISTAKE.
(200) The troops were removed from the garrison in 1823, but restored in 1828, after the Winnebago war. This was a disturbance between the Winnebagoes and white settlers on and near the Mississippi. After some murders had been committed, the young chief, Red Bird, was taken and imprisoned at Prairie du Chien to await his trial, where he committed suicide in consequence of chagrin and the irksomeness of confinement. It was feared that the Pottowattamies would make common cause with the Winnebagoes, and commence a general system of havoc and bloodshed on the frontier. They were deterred from such a step, probably, by the exertions of Billy Caldwell, Robinson, and Shaw-bee-nay, who made an expedition among the Rock River bands, to argue and persuade them into remaining tranquil.
RETURN JOURNEY, CONTINUED.
(255) [The Kinzies and their party set out for a long trek back to Ft. Winnebago, by foot and by water.] A number of the Winnebagoes (for we had been among our own people since leaving Gros-pied Lake) set out for the appointed place by water, paddling their canoes, of which they had selected the largest and strongest. ...
(256) [The trail dipped into a rather wet area. Mr. Kinzie comes back barefoot with his trousers rolled up.] "What are you going to do?" inquired I.
"Carry you through the swamp on my shoulders. Come, Petaille [Grignon], you are the strongest — you are to carry Madame Kinzie, and To-shun-nuck there (pointing to a tall, stout Winnebago), he will take Madame Helm."
FOUR-LEGS, THE DANDY.
(265) While all these matters were in progress, we received frequent visits from our Indian friends. First and foremost among them was "the young Dandy," Four-Legs.
One fine morning he made his appearance, accompanied by two squaws, whom he introduced as his wives. He could speak a little Chippewa, and by this means he and our mother contrived to keep up something of a conversation. He was dressed in all his finery, brooches, wampum, fan, looking-glass and all. The paint upon his face and chest showed that he had devoted no small time to the labors of his toilet.
He took a chair, as he had seen done at Washington, and made signs to his women to sit down upon the floor.
The custom of taking two wives is not very general among the Indians. They seem to have the sagacity to perceive that the fewer they have to manage, the more complete is the peace and quiet of the wigwam.
Nevertheless, it sometimes happens that a husband takes a foolish fancy for a second squaw, and in that case he uses all his cunning and eloquence to reconcile the first to receiving a new inmate in the lodge. Of course it is a matter that must be managed adroitly, in order that harmony may be preserved.
"My dear, your health is not very good; it is time you should have some rest. You have worked very hard, and it grieves me that you should have to labor any longer. Let me get you some nice young squaw to wait upon you, that you may live at ease all the rest of your life."
The first wife consents; indeed, she has no option. If she is of a jealous, vindictive disposition, what a life the new-comer leads! The old one maintains all her rights of dowager and duenna, and the husband's tenderness is (266) hardly a compensation for all the evils the young rival is made to suffer.
It was on Sunday morning that this visit of the Dandy was made to us. We were all seated quietly, engaged in reading. Four-Legs inquired of my mother, why we were so occupied, and why everything around us was so still.
My mother explained to him our observance of the day of rest — that we devoted it to worshipping and serving the Great Spirit, as he had commanded in his Holy Word.
Four-Legs gave a nod of approbation. That was very right, he said — he was glad to see us doing our duty — he was very religious himself, and he liked to see others so. He always took care that his squaws attended to their duties, — not reading, perhaps, but such as the Great Spirit liked, and such as he thought proper and becoming.
He seemed to have no fancy for listening to any explanation of our points of difference. The impression among the Winnebagoes "that if the Great Spirit had wished them different from what they are, he would have made them so," seems too strong to yield to either argument or persuasion.
Sometimes those who are desirous of appearing somewhat civilized will listen quietly to all that is advanced on the subject of Christianity, then, coolly saying, "Yes, we believe that too," will change the conversation to other subjects.
As a general thing, they do not appear to perceive that there is anything to be gained by adopting the religion and the customs of the whites. "Look at them," they say, "always toiling and striving — always wearing a brow of care — shut up in houses — afraid of the wind and the rain — suffering when they are deprived of the comforts of life! We, on the contrary, live a life of freedom and happiness. (267) We hunt and fish, and pass our time pleasantly in the open woods and prairies. If we are hungry, we take some game; or, if we do not find that, we can go without. If our enemies trouble us, we can kill them, and there is no more said about it. What should we gain by changing ourselves into white men?"6
Christian missionaries, with all their efforts to convert them, had at this day made little progress in enlightening their minds upon the doctrines of the Gospel. Mr. Mazzuchelli, a Roman Catholic priest, accompanied by Miss Elizabeth Grignon as interpreter, made a missionary visit to the Portage during our residence there, and, after some instruction from him, about forty consented to be baptized. Christian names were given to them, with which they seemed much pleased; and not less so with the little plated crucifixes which each received, and which the women wore about their necks. These they seemed to regard with a devotional feeling; but I was not sufficiently acquainted with their language to gather from them whether they understood the doctrine the symbol was designed to convey. Certain it is, they expressed no wish to learn our language, in order that they might gain a fuller knowledge of the Saviour, nor any solicitude to be taught more about him than they had received during the missionary's short visit.
One woman, to whom the name of Charlotte had been given, signified a desire to learn the domestic ways of the whites, and asked of me as a favor through Madame Paquette that she might be permitted to come on "washing-day," (268) and learn of my servants our way of managing the business. A tub was given her, and my woman instructed her, by signs and example, how she was to manage. As I was not a little curious to observe how things went on, I proceeded after a time to the kitchen where they all were. Charlotte was at her tub, scouring and rubbing with all her might at her little crucifix. Two other squaws sat upon the floor near her, watching the operation.
"That is the work she has been at for the last half-hour," said Josette, in a tone of great impatience. "She'll never learn to wash."
Charlotte, however, soon fell diligently to work, and really seemed as if she would tear her arms off, with her violent exertions.
After a time, supposing that she must feel a good deal fatigued and exhausted with the unaccustomed labor, I did what it was at that day very much the fashion to do, — what, at home, I had always seen done on washing-day, — what, in short, I imagine was then a general custom among housekeepers. I went to the dining-room closet, intending to give Charlotte a glass of wine or brandy and water. My "cupboard" proved to be in the state of the luckless "Mother Hubbard's" — nothing of the kind could I find but a bottle of orange shrub.
Of this I poured out a wineglassful, and, carrying it out, offered it to the woman. She took it with an expression of great pleasure; but, in carrying it to her lips, she stopped short, and exclaiming, "Whiskey!" immediately returned it to me. I would still have pressed it upon her; for, in my inexperience, I really believed it was a cordial she needed; but, pointing to her crucifix, she shook her head and returned to her work.
I received this as a lesson more powerful than twenty (269) sermons. It was the first time in my life that I had ever seen spirituous liquors rejected upon a religious principle, and it made an impression upon me that I never forgot.
Among the women of the tribe with whom we early became acquainted, our greatest favorite was a daughter of one of the Day-kau-rays. This family, as I have elsewhere said, boasted in some remote generation a cross of the French blood, and this fact might account for the fair complexion and soft curling hair which distinguished our friend. She had a noble forehead, full, expressive eyes, and fine teeth. Unlike the women of her people, she had not grown brown and haggard with advancing years. Indeed, with the exception of one feature, she might be called beautiful.
She had many years before married a Mus-qua-kee, or Fox Indian, and, acc62ording to the custom among all the tribes, the husband came home to the wife's family, and lived among the Winnebagoes.
It is this custom, so exactly the reverse of civilized ways, that makes the birth of a daughter a subject of peculiar rejoicing in an Indian family. "She will bring another hunter to our lodge," is the style of mutual congratulation.
The Mus-qua-kee continued, for some few years, to live among his wife's relations; but, as no children blessed their union, he at length became tired of his new friends, (270) and longed to return to his own people. He tried, for a time, to persuade his wife to leave her home, and accompany him to the Mississippi, on the banks of which the Sauks and Foxes lived, but in vain. She could not resolve to make the sacrifice.
One day, after many fruitless efforts to persuade her, he flew into a violent passion.
"Then, if you will not go with me," said he, "I will leave you; but you shall never be the wife of any other man — I will mark you!"
Saying this, he flew upon her, and bit off the end of her nose. This, the usual punishment for conjugal infidelity, is the greatest disgrace a woman can receive — it bars her forever from again entering the pale of matrimony. The wretch fled to his own people; but his revenge fell short of its aim. Day-kau-ray was too well known and too universally respected to suffer opprobrium in any member of his family. This bright, loving creature in particular, won all hearts upon a first acquaintance — she certainly did ours, from the outset.
She suffered much from rheumatism, and a remedy we gave her soon afforded her almost entire relief. Her gratitude knew no bounds. Notwithstanding that from long suffering she had become partially crippled, she would walk all the way from the Barribault, a distance of ten miles, as often as once in two or three weeks, to visit us. Then, to sit and gaze at us, to laugh with childish glee at everything new or strange that we employed ourselves about — to pat and stroke us every time we came near her — sometimes to raise our hand or arm and kiss it — these were her demonstrations of affection. And we loved her in return. It was always a joyful announcement when, looking out over the Portage road, somebody called out, "The Cut-Nose is coming!" In time, however, (271) we learned to call her by her baptismal name of Elizabeth, for she, too, was one of Mr. Mazzuchelli's converts.
She came one day, accompanied by a half-grown boy, carrying a young fawn she had brought me as a present. I was delighted with the pretty creature — with its soft eyes and dappled coat; but having often heard the simile, "as wild as a fawn," I did not anticipate much success in taming it. ...
(272) Very shortly after the departure of my husband, we received a visit from "the White Crow," the "Little Priest," and several others of the principal chiefs of the Bock River Indians. They seemed greatly disappointed at learning that their Father was from home, even though his errand was to get "the silver." We sent for Paquette, who interpreted for us the object of their visit.
They had come to inform us that the Sauk chief Black Hawk and his band, who, in compliance with a former treaty, had removed some time previous to the west of the Mississippi, had now returned to their old homes and hunting-grounds, and expressed a determination not to relinquish them, but to drive off the white settlers who had begun to occupy them.
The latter, in fact, the chief had already done, and having, as it was said, induced some of the Pottowattamies to join him, there was reason to fear that he might persuade some of the Winnebagoes to follow their example.
These chiefs had come to counsel with their Father, and (273) to assure him that they should do all in their power to keep their young men quiet. They had heard that troops were being raised down among the whites in Illinois, and they had hopes that their people would be wise enough to keep out of difficulty. Furthermore, they begged that their Father, on his return, would see that the soldiers did not meddle with them, so long as they remained quiet and behaved in a friendly manner.
White Crow seemed particularly anxious to impress it upon me, that if any danger should arise in Shaw-nee-aw-kee's absence, he should come with his people to protect me and my family. I relied upon his assurances, for he had ever shown himself an upright and honorable Indian.
INDIAN CUSTOMS AND DANCES.
(278) ... in obedience to a summons sent to the different villages, the Indians very shortly came flocking in to the payment.
There was among their number, this year, one whom I had never before seen — the mother of the elder Day-kau-ray. No one could tell her age, but all agreed that she must have seen upwards of a hundred winters. Her eyes dimmed, and almost white with age — her face dark and withered, like a baked apple — her voice tremulous and feeble, except when raised in fury to reprove her graceless grandsons, who were fond of playing her all sorts of mischievous tricks, indicated the very great age she must have attained.
She usually went upon all-fours, not having strength to hold herself erect. On the day of the payment, having received her portion, which she carefully hid in the corner of her blanket, she came crawling along and seated herself on the door-step, to count her treasure.
My sister and I were watching her movements from the open window.
Presently, just as she had, unobserved, as she thought, spread out her silver before her, two of her descendants (279) came suddenly upon her. At first they seemed begging for a share, but she repulsed them with angry gestures, when one of them made a sudden swoop, and possessed himself of a handful.
She tried to rise, to pursue him, but was unable to do more than clutch the remainder and utter the most unearthly screams of rage. At this instant the boys raised their eyes and perceived us regarding them. They burst into a laugh, and with a sort of mocking gesture they threw her the half-dollars, and ran back to the pay-ground.
In spite of their vexatious tricks, she seemed very fond of them, and never failed to beg something of her Father, that she might bestow upon them.
She crept into the parlor one morning, then straightening herself up, and supporting herself by the frame of the door, she cried, in a most piteous tone, — "Shaw-nee-aw-kee! Wau-tshob-ee-rah Thsoonsh-koo-nee-noh!" (Silver-man, I have no looking-glass.) My husband, smiling and taking up the same little tone, cried, in return, —
"Do you wish to look at yourself, mother?"
The idea seemed to her so irresistibly comic that she laughed until she was fairly obliged to seat herself upon the floor and give way to her enjoyment. She then owned that it was for one of the boys that she wanted the little mirror. When her Father had given it to her, she found that she had "no comb," then that she had "no knife," then that she had "no calico shawl," until it ended, as it generally did, by Shaw-nee-aw-kee paying pretty dearly for his joke.
[Despite the use of Algonquian words, the Indians referred to here are Winnebagoes.]
When the Indians arrived and when they departed, my sense of "woman's rights" was often greatly outraged. The master of the family, as a general thing, came leisurely bearing his gun and perhaps a lance in his hand; the (280) woman, with the mats and poles of her lodge upon her shoulders, her pappoose, if she had one, her kettles, sacks of corn, and wild rice, and, not unfrequently, the household dog perched on the top of all. If there is a horse or pony in the list of family possessions, the man rides, the squaw trudges after.
This unequal division of labor is the result of no want of kind, affectionate feeling on the part of the husband. It is rather the instinct of the sex to assert their superiority of position and importance, when a proper occasion offers. When out of the reach of observation, and in no danger of compromising his own dignity, the husband is willing enough to relieve his spouse from the burden that custom imposes on her, by sharing her labors and hardships.b
The payment had not passed without its appropriate number of complimentary and medicine dances. The latter take place only at rare intervals — the former whenever an occasion demanding a manifestation of respect and courtesy presents itself.
It is the custom to ask permission of the person to be complimented, to dance for him. This granted, preparation is made by painting the face elaborately, and marking the person, which is usually bare about the chest and shoulders, after the most approved pattern. All the ornaments that can be mustered are added to the hair, or headdress. Happy is he who, in virtue of having taken one or more scalps, is entitled to proclaim it by a corresponding number of eagle's feathers.
The less fortunate make a substitute of the feathers of the wild turkey, or, better still, of the first unlucky "rooster" that falls in their way. My poor fowls, during the time of payment, were always thoroughly plucked.
When their preparations are completed, the dancers (281) assemble at some convenient place, whence they come marching to the spot appointed, accompanied by the music of the Indian drum and shee-shee-qua or rattle. They range themselves in a circle and dance with violent contortions and gesticulations, some of them graceful, others only energetic, the squaws, who stand a little apart and mingle their discordant voices with the music of the instruments, rarely participating in the dance. Occasionally, however, when excited by the general gaiety, a few of them will form a circle outside and perform a sort of ungraceful, up-and-down movement, which has no merit, save the perfect time which is kept, and for which the Indians seem, without exception, to possess a natural ear.
The dance finished, which is only when the strength of the dancers is quite exhausted, a quantity of presents are brought and placed in the middle of the circle, by order of the party complimented. An equitable distribution is made by one of their number; and, the object of all this display having been accomplished, they retire.
The medicine dance is carried on chiefly to celebrate the skill of the "Medicine-man" in curing diseases. This functionary belongs to a fraternity who are supposed to add to their other powers some skill in interpreting the will of the Great Spirit in regard to the conduct of his people. He occasionally makes offerings and sacrifices which are regarded as propitiatory. In this sense, the term "priest" may be deemed applicable to him. He is also a "prophet" in so far as he is, in a limited degree, an instructor; but he does not claim to possess the gift of foretelling future events.
A person is selected to join the fraternity of the "Medicine-man" by those already initiated, chiefly on account of some skill or sagacity that has been observed in him. Sometimes it happens that a person who has had a severe (282) illness which has yielded to the prescriptions of one of the members, is considered a proper object of choice from a sort of claim thus established.
When he is about to be initiated, a great feast is made, of course at the expense of the candidate, for in simple as in civilized life the same principle of politics holds good, "honors must be paid for." An animal is killed and dressed, of which the people at large partake — there are dances and songs and speeches in abundance. Then the chief Medicine-man takes the candidate and privately instructs him in all the ceremonies and knowledge necessary to make him an accomplished member of the fraternity. Sometimes the new member selected is still a child. In that case he is taken by the Medicine-man so soon as he reaches a proper age, and qualified by instruction and example to become a creditable member of the fraternity.
Among the Winnebagoes there seems a considerable belief in magic. Each Medicine-man has a bag or sack, in which is supposed to be inclosed some animal, to whom, in the course of their pow-wows, he addresses himself, crying to him in the note common to his imagined species. And the people seem to be persuaded that the answers which are announced are really communications, in this form, from the Great Spirit.
The Indians appear to have no idea of a retribution beyond this life. They have a strong appreciation of the great fundamental virtues of natural religion — the worship of the Great Spirit, brotherly love, parental affection, honesty, temperance, and chastity. Any infringement of the laws of the Great Spirit, by a departure from these virtues, they believe will excite his anger and draw down punishment. These are their principles. That their practice evinces more and more a departure from them, (283) under the debasing influences of a proximity to the whites, is a melancholy truth, which no one will admit with so much sorrow as those who lived among them, and esteemed them, before this signal change had taken place.
COMMENCEMENT OF THE SAUK WAR.
(312) As soon as it became certain that the Sauks and Foxes would not pursue the same course they had on the previous year, that is, retreat peaceably across the Mississippi, Mr. Kinzie resolved to hold a council with all the principal chiefs of the Winnebagoes who were accessible at this time. He knew that the Sauks would use every effort to induce their neighbors to join them, and that there existed in the breasts of too many of the young savages a desire to distinguish themselves by "taking some white scalps." They did not love the Americans — why should they? By them they had been gradually dispossessed of the broad and beautiful domains of their forefathers, and hunted from place to place, and the only equivalent they had received in exchange had been a few thousands annually in silver and presents, together with the pernicious example, the debasing influence, and the positive ill treatment of too many of the new settlers upon their lands.
With all these facts in view, therefore, their Father felt that the utmost watchfulness was necessary, and that the strongest arguments must be brought forward, to preserve the young men of the Winnebagoes in their allegiance to the Americans. Of the older members he felt quite sure. About fifty lodges had come at the commencement of the disturbances and encamped around our dwelling, saying that if the Sauks attacked us it must be after killing them; and, knowing them well, we had perfect confidence in their assurances.
(313) But their vicinity, while it gave us a feeling of protection, likewise furnished us with a channel of the most exciting and agitating daily communications. As the theatre of operations approached nearer and nearer, intelligence was brought in by their runners — now, that "Captain Barney's head had been recognized in the Sauk camp, where it had been brought the day previous," next, that "the Sauks were carrying Lieutenant Beall's head on a pole in front of them as they marched to meet the whites." Sometimes it was a story which we afterwards found to be unhappily true, as that of the murder of their Agent, M. St Vrain, at Kellogg's Grove, by the Sauks themselves, who ought to have protected him.
It was after the news of this last occurrence that the appointed council with the Winnebagoes was to be held at the Four Lakes, thirty-five miles distant from Fort Winnebago.
In vain we pleaded and remonstrated against such an exposure. "It was his duty to assemble his people and talk to them," my husband said, "and he must run the risk, if there were any. He had perfect confidence in the Winnebagoes. The enemy, by all he could learn, were now far distant from the Four Lakes — probably at Kosh-ko-nong. He would set off early in the morning with Paquette, hold his council, and return to us the same evening."
It were useless to attempt to describe our feelings during that long and dreary day. When night arrived, the cry of a drunken Indian, or even the barking of a dog, would fill our hearts with terror.
As we sat, at a late hour, at the open window, listening to every sound, with what joy did we at length distinguish the tramp of horses! We knew it to be Griffin and Jerry ascending the hill, and a cheerful shout soon announced that all was well. My husband and his interpreter had (314) ridden seventy miles that day, besides holding a long "talk" with the Indians.
The Winnebagoes in council had promised to use their utmost endeavors to preserve peace and good order among their young men. They informed their Father that the bands on the Rock River, with the exception of Win-no-sheek's, were all determined to remain friendly and keep aloof from the Sauks. To that end, they were abandoning their villages and corn-fields and moving north, that their Great Father, the President, might not feel dissatisfied with them. With regard to Win-no-sheek and his people, they professed themselves unable to answer.
Time went on, and brought with it stories of fresh outrages. Among these were the murders of Auberry, Green, and Force, at Blue Mound, and the attack on Apple Fort. The tidings of the latter were brought by old Crely,7 the father of Mrs. Paquette, who rode express from Galena, and who averred that he once passed a bush behind which the Sauks were hiding, but that his horse smelt the sweet-scented grass with which they always adorn their persons when on a war-party, and set out on such a gallop that he never stopped until he arrived at the Portage.c
(316) In a few days our friends waked up to the conviction that something must be done at once. The first step was to forbid any Winnebago coming within the garrison, lest they should find out what they had known as well as ourselves for three months past — namely, the feebleness of the means of resistance. The next was to send fatigue-parties into the woods, under the protection of a guard, to cut pickets for inclosing the garrison.
There was every reason to believe that the enemy were not very far distant, and that their object in coming north was to break a way into the Chippewa country, where they would find a place of security among their friends and allies. The story that our Indian runners brought in most frequently was, that the Sauks were determined to fall upon the whites at the Portage and Fort, and massacre all, except the families of the Agent and Interpreter.
Plante and Pillon with their families had departed at the first word of danger. There only remained with us Manaigre, whose wife was a half-Winnebago, Isidore Morrin, and the blacksmiths from Sugar Creek — Mata and Turcotte.
At night we were all regularly armed and our posts assigned us. After every means had been taken to make the house secure, the orders were given. Sister Margaret and I, in case of attack, were to mount with the children to the rooms above, while my husband and his men were to make good their defence as long as possible against the enemy. Since I had shown my sportsmanship by bringing down accidentally a blackbird on the wing, I felt as if I could do some execution with my little pistols, which were regularly placed beside my pillow at night; and I (317) was fully resolved to use them, if necessity required. I do not remember to have felt the slightest compunction at the idea of taking the lives of two Sauks, as I had no doubt I should do; and this explains to me what I had before often wondered at, the indifference, namely, of the soldier on the field of battle to the destruction of human life. Had I been called upon, however, to use my weapons effectually, I should no doubt have looked back upon it with horror.
Surrounded as we were by Indian lodges, which seldom became perfectly quiet, and excited as our nerves had become by all that we were daily in the habit of hearing, we rarely slept very soundly. One night, after we had as much as possible composed ourselves, we were startled at a late hour by a tap upon the window at the head of our bed, and a call of "Chon! Chon!"8 (John! John!)
"Tshah-ko-zhah?" (What is it?)
It was Hoo-wau-ne-kah, the Little Elk. He spoke rapidly, and in a tone of great agitation. I could not understand him, and I lay trembling, and dreading to hear his errand interpreted. Now and then I could distinguish the words Sau-kee (Sauks) and Shoonk-hat-tay-rah (horse), and they were not very reassuring.
The trouble, I soon learned, was this. A fresh trail had been observed near the Petit Rocher, on the Wisconsin, and the people at the villages on the Barribault were in a state of great alarm, fearing it might be the Sauks. There was the appearance of a hundred or more horses having passed by this trail. Hoo-wau-ne-kah had been (318) dispatched at once to tell their Father, and to ask his advice.
After listening to all he had to communicate, his Father told him the trail was undoubtedly that of General Henry's troops, who were said to have come north, looking for the enemy; that as the marks of the horses' hoofs showed them, by this report, to have been shod, that was sufficient proof that it was not the trail of the Sauks. He thought that the people at the villages need not feel any uneasiness.
"Very well, Father," replied Hoo-wau-ne-kah; "I will go back and tell my people what you say. They will believe you, for you always tell them the truth. You are not like us Indians, who sometimes deceive each other." So saying, he returned to his friends, much comforted.
The completion of the picketing and other defences, together with the arrival of a detachment of troops from Fort Howard under Lieutenant Hunter, at our fort, now seemed to render the latter the place of greatest safety. We therefore regularly, every evening immediately before dusk, took up our line of march for the opposite side of the river, and repaired to quarters that had been assigned us within the garrison, leaving our own house and chattels to the care of the Frenchmen and our friends the Winnebagoes.
It was on one of these days that we were sitting at the windows which looked out over the Portage — indeed, we seldom sat anywhere else, our almost sole occupation being to look abroad and see what was coming next — when a loud, long, shrill whoop from a distance gave notice of something to be heard. "The news-halloo! what could it portend? What were we about to hear?" By gazing intently towards the farthest extremity of the road, we (319) could perceive a moving body of horsemen, which, as they approached, we saw to be Indians. They were in full costume. Scarlet streamers fluttered at the ends of their lances — their arms glittered in the sun. Presently, as they drew nearer, their paint and feathers and brooches became visible. There were fifty or more warriors. They passed the road which turns to the Fort, and rode directly up the hill leading to the Agency. Shaw-nee-aw-kee was absent. The Interpreter had been sent for on the first distant appearance of the strangers, but had not yet arrived. The party, having ascended the hill, halted near the blacksmith's shop, but did not dismount.
Our hearts trembled — it must surely be the enemy. At this moment my husband appeared from the direction of the Interpreter's house. We called to entreat him to stop, but he walked along towards the new-comers.
To our infinite joy, we saw the chief of the party dismount, and all the others following his example and approaching to shake hands.
A space was soon cleared around the leader and my husband, when the former commenced an oration, flourishing his sword and using much violent gesticulation. It was the first time I had seen an Indian armed with that weapon, and I dreaded to perceive it in such hands. Sometimes he appeared as if he were about to take off the head of his auditor at a blow; and our hearts sank as we remembered the stratagems at Mackinac and Detroit in former days. At length the speech was concluded, another shaking of hands took place, and we saw my husband leading the way to his storehouse, from which some of his men presently brought tobacco and pipes and laid them at the feet of the chief.
Our suspense was soon relieved by being informed that the strangers were Man-Eater, the principal chief of the (320) Rock River Indians, who had come with his band to "hold a talk" and bring information.
These Indians were under the special care of Mr. Henry Gratiot, and his efforts had been most judicious and unremitting in preserving the good feeling of this the most dangerous portion of the Winnebagoes.
The intelligence that Man-Eater, who was a most noble Indian in appearance and character, brought us, confirmed that already received, namely, that the Sauks were gradually drawing north, towards the Portage, although he evidently did not know exactly their whereabouts.
There was, soon after they had taken leave, an arrival of another party of Winnebagoes, and these requested permission to dance for their Father.
The compliment having been accepted, they assembled, as usual, on the esplanade in front of the house. My sister, the children, and myself stationed ourselves at the open windows, according to custom, and my husband sat on the broad step before the door, which opened from the outer air directly into the parlor where we were.
The performance commenced, and as the dancers proceeded, following each other round and round in the progress of the dance, my sister, Mrs. Helm, remarked to me, "Look at that small, dark Indian, with the green boughs on his person — that is a Sauk! They always mark themselves in this manner with white clay, and ornament themselves with leaves when they dance!" In truth, I had never seen this costume among our own Indians, and as I gazed at this one with green chaplets round his head and his legs, and even his gun wreathed in the same manner, while his body displayed no paint except the white transverse streaks with which it was covered, I saw that he was, indeed, a stranger. Without owing anything to the exaggeration of fear, his countenance was truly ferocious. (321) He held his gun in his hand, and every time the course of the dance brought him directly in front of where we sat, he would turn his gaze full upon us, and club his weapon before him with what we interpreted into an air of defiance. We sat as still as death, for we knew it would not be wise to exhibit any appearance of fear; but my sister remarked, in a low tone, "I have always thought that I was to lose my life by the hands of the Indians. This is the third Indian war I have gone through, and now, I suppose, it will be the last."
It was the only time I ever saw her lose her self-possession. She was always remarkably calm and resolute, but now I could see that she trembled. Still we sat there — there was a sort of fascination as our imaginations became more and more excited. Presently some rain-drops began to fall. The Indians continued their dance for a few minutes longer, then, with whoopings and shoutings, they rushed simultaneously towards the house. We fled into my apartment and closed the door, which my sister at first held fast, but she presently came and seated herself by me on the bed, for she saw that I could not compose myself. Of all forms of death, that by the hands of savages is the most difficult to face calmly; and I fully believed that our hour was come.
There was no interruption to the dance, which the Indians carried on in the parlor, leaping and yelling as if they would bring down the roof over our heads. In vain we tried to persuade my husband and the children, through a crevice of the door, to come and join us. The latter, feeling no danger, were too much delighted with the exhibition to leave it, and the former only came for a moment to reassure me, and then judged it wisest to return, and manifest his satisfaction at the compliment by his presence. He made light of our fears, and would not (322) admit that the object of our suspicions was in fact a Sauk, but only some young Winnebago, who had, as is sometimes the custom, imitated them in costume and appearance.
It may have been "good fun" to him to return to his village and tell how he frightened "the white squaws." Such a trick would not be unnatural in a white youth, and perhaps, since human nature is everywhere the same, it might not be out of the way in an Indian.
FLEEING FROM THE INDIANS.
(325) The three Winnebagoes were in the bow of the boat. Old Smoker, the chief, squatted upon his feet on the bench of the foremost rowers. We looked at him. He was gazing intently in the direction of the wooded point we were approaching. Our eyes followed his, and we saw three Indians step forward and stand upon the bank. We said in a low voice to each other, "If they are Sauks, we are lost, for the whole body must be in that thicket." The boat continued to approach; not a word was spoken; the dip of the paddle, and perhaps the beating hearts of some, were the only sounds that broke the stillness. Again we looked at the chief. His nostrils were dilated — his eyes almost glaring.
Suddenly, with a bound, he sprang to his feet and uttered his long, shrill whoop.
"Hoh! hoh! hoh! Neechee (friend) Muh-no-mo-nee!"
All was now joy and gladness. Every one was forward to shake hands with the strangers as soon as we could reach them, in token of our satisfaction that they were Menomonees and not Sauks, of the latter of whom, by the way, they could give us no intelligence.
[Being transported by a crew of Frenchmen, they land on Garlic Island in Lake Winnebago.] (328) Two or three canoes of Winnebagoes arrived at the same moment, and their owners immediately stepped forward with an offering of some sturgeon which they had caught in the lake. As this promised to be an agreeable variety to the noon-tide meal (at least for the Frenchmen), it was decided to stop and kindle a fire for the purpose of cooking it. ...
(329) After partaking of our dinner, we stepped on board our boat, and, the wind having risen, we were carried by the breeze to the farther verge of the lake, and into the entrance of the river, or, as it was called, the Winnebago Rapids.
On the point of land to the right stood a collection of neat bark wigwams — this was Four-Legs' village.
FORT HOWARD — OUR RETURN HOME.
(338) ... they had every reason, from information (339) lately brought in by the Winnebagoes, to believe [Black Hawk] would be found. ... Not long after this, I was told one morning that "a lady" wished to see me at the front door. I obeyed the summons, and, to my surprise, was greeted by my friend Madame Four-Legs. After much demonstration of joy at seeing me, such as putting her two hands together over her forehead and then parting them in a waving kind of gesture, laughing, and patting me on my arms, she drew from her bosom a letter from my husband, of which she was the bearer. It was to this effect — "Generals Dodge and Henry left here a few days since, accompanied by Paquette; they met the Sauks near the Wisconsin, on the 21st. A battle ensued, in which upwards of fifty of the enemy were killed — our loss was one killed, and eight wounded. The citizens are well pleased that all this has been accomplished without any aid from Old White Beaver.9 The war must be near its close, for the militia and regulars together will soon finish the remaining handful of fugitives."
SURRENDER OF WINNEBAGO PRISONERS.
(349) But a very short time had we been quietly at home when a summons came to my husband to collect the principal chiefs of the Winnebagoes and meet General Scott and Governor Reynolds at Rock Island, where it was proposed to hold a treaty for the purchase of all the lands east and south of the Wisconsin. Messengers were accordingly sent to collect the principal men, and, (350) accompanied by as many as chose to report themselves, he set off on his journey.
He had been gone about two weeks, and I was beginning to count the days which must elapse before I could reasonably expect his return, when, one afternoon, I went over to pay a visit to my sister at the Fort. As I passed into the large hall of one range of quarters, Lieutenant Lacy came suddenly in from the opposite direction, and, almost without stopping, cried, —
"Bad news, madam! Have you heard it?"
"No. What is it?"
"The cholera has broken out at Rock Island, and they are dying by five hundred a day. Dr. Finley has just arrived with the news." So saying, he vanished, without stopping to answer a question.
The cholera at Rock Island, and my husband there! I flew to the other door of the hall, which looked out upon the parade-ground. A sentinel was walking near. "Soldier," cried I, "will you run to the young officers' quarters and ask Dr. Finley to come here for a moment?"
The man shook his head — he was not allowed to leave his post.
Presently Mrs. Lacy's servant-girl appeared from a door under the steps. She was a worthless creature, but where help was so scarce ladies could not afford to keep a scrupulous tariff of moral qualification.
"Oh! Catharine," said I, "will you run over and ask Dr. Finley to come here a moment? I must hear what news he has brought from Rock Island." She put on a modest look, and said, —
"I do not like to go to the young officers' quarters."
I was indignant at her hypocrisy, but I was also wild with impatience, when to my great joy Dr. Finley made his appearance.
(351) "Where is my husband?" cried I.
"On his way home, madam, safe and sound. He will probably be here to-morrow." He then gave me an account of the ravages the cholera was making among the troops, which were indeed severe, although less so than rumor had at first proclaimed.
Notwithstanding the doctor's assurance of his safety, my husband was seized with cholera on his journey. By the kind care of Paquette and the plentiful use of chicken-broth which the poor woman at whose cabin he stopped administered to him, he soon recovered, and reached his home in safety, having taken Prairie du Chien in his route and brought his mother with him again to her home.
The Indians had consented to the sale of their beautiful domain. Indeed, there is no alternative in such cases. If they persist in retaining them, and become surrounded and hemmed in by the white settlers, their situation is more deplorable than if they surrendered their homes altogether. This they are aware of, and therefore, as a general thing, they give up their lands at the proposal of Government, and only take care to make the best bargain they can for themselves. In this instance they were to receive as an equivalent a tract of land extending to the interior of Iowa, and an additional sum of ten thousand dollars annually.
One of the stipulations of the treaty was, the surrender by the Winnebagoes of certain individuals of their tribe accused of having participated with the Sauks in some of the murders on the frontier, in order that they might be tried by our laws, and acquitted or punished as the case might be.
(352) Wau-kaun-kah (the Little Snake) voluntarily gave himself as a hostage until the delivery of the suspected persons. He was accordingly received by the Agent, and marched over and placed in confinement at the Fort until the seven accused should appear to redeem him.
It was a work of some little time on the part of the nation to persuade these suspected individuals to place themselves in the hands of the whites, that they might receive justice according to the laws of the latter. The trial of Red Bird, and his languishing death in prison, were still fresh in their memories, and it needed a good deal of resolution, as well as a strong conviction of conscious innocence, to brace them up to such a step.
It had to be brought about by arguments and persuasions, for the nation would never have resorted to force to compel the fulfilment of their stipulation.
In the mean time a solemn talk was held with the principal chiefs assembled at the Agency. A great part of the nation were in the immediate neighborhood, in obedience to a notice sent by Governor Porter, who, in virtue of his office of Governor of Michigan Territory, was also Superintendent of the Northwest Division of the Indians. Instead of calling upon the Agent to take charge of the annuity money, as had heretofore been the custom, the Governor had announced his intention of bringing it himself to Fort Winnebago and being present at the payment. The time appointed had now arrived, and with it the main body of the Winnebagoes.
Such of the Indians as had not attended the treaty at Rock Island and been instrumental in the cession of their country, were loud in their condemnation of the step, and their lamentations over it. Foremost among these was Wild-Cat, the Falstaff of Garlic Island and its vicinity. It was little wonder that he should shed bitter tears, as he (353) did, over the loss of his beautiful home on the blue waters of Winnebago Lake.
"If he had not been accidentally stopped," he said, "on his way to the treaty, and detained until it was too late, he would never, never have permitted the bargain."
His Father, who knew that a desperate frolic, into which Wild-Cat had been enticed by the way, was the cause of his failing to accompany his countrymen to Rock Island, replied, gravely, —
"That he had heard of the chief's misfortune on this occasion. How that, in ascending the Fox River, a couple of kegs of whiskey had come floating down the stream, which, running foul of his canoe with great force, had injured it to such a degree that he had been obliged to stop several days at the Mee-kan, to repair damages."
The shouts of laughter which greeted this explanation were so contagious that poor Wild-Cat himself was compelled to join in it, and treat his misfortune as a joke.
The suspected Indians having engaged the services of Judge Doty to defend them on their future trial, notice was at length given that on a certain day they would be brought to the Portage and surrendered to their Father, to be by him transferred to the keeping of the military officer appointed to receive them.
It was joyful news to poor Wau-kaun-kah, that the day of his release was at hand. Every time that we had been within the walls of the Fort we had been saluted by a call from him, as he kept his station at the guard-room window:
"Do you hear anything of those Indians? When are they coming, that I may be let out?"
We had endeavored to lighten his confinement by seeing that he was well supplied with food, and his Father and Paquette had paid him occasional visits; but, notwithstanding (354) these attentions and the kindness he had received at the Fort, his confinement was inexpressibly irksome.
On the morning of a bright autumnal day the authorities were notified that the chiefs of the nation would present themselves at the Agency to deliver the suspected persons as prisoners to the Americans.
At the hour of ten o'clock, as we looked out over the Portage road, we could descry a moving concourse of people, in which brilliant color, glittering arms, and, as they approached still nearer, certain white objects of unusual appearance could be distinguished.
General Dodge, Major Plympton, and one or two other officers took their seats with Mr. Kinzie on the platform in front of the door of our mansion to receive them, while we stationed ourselves at the window where we could both see and hear.
The procession wound up the hill, and approached, marching slowly towards us. It was a grand and solemn sight. First came some of the principal chiefs in their most brilliant array. Next, the prisoners, all habited in white cotton, in token of their innocence, with girdles round their waists. The music of the drum and the shee-shee-qua accompanied their death-song, which they were chaunting. They wore no paint, no ornaments — their countenances were grave and thoughtful. It might well be a serious moment to them, for they knew but little of the customs of the whites, and that little was not such as to inspire cheerfulness. Only their Father's assurance that they should receive strict justice, would probably have induced them to comply with the engagements of the nation in this manner.
The remainder of the procession was made up of a long train of Winnebagoes, all decked out in their holiday garb.
(355) The chiefs approached and shook hands with the gentlemen, who stood ready to receive their greeting. Then the prisoners came forward, and went through the same salutation with the officers. When they offered their hands to their Father, he declined.
"No," said he. "You have come here accused of great crimes — of having assisted in taking the lives of some of the defenceless settlers. When you have been tried by the laws of the land, and been proved innocent, then your Father will give you his hand."
They looked still more serious at this address, as if they thought it indicated that their Father, too, believed them guilty, and stepping back a little, they seated themselves, without speaking, in a row upon the ground, facing their Father and the officers. The other Indians all took seats in a circle around them, except the one-eyed chief, Kau-ray-kau-say-kah (the White Crow), who had been deputed to deliver the prisoners to the Agent.
He made a speech in which he set forth that, "although asserting their innocence of the charges preferred against them, his countrymen were quite willing to be tried by the laws of white men. He hoped they would not be detained long, but that the matter would be investigated soon, and that they would come out of it clear and white."
In reply he was assured that all things would be conducted fairly and impartially, exactly as if the accused were white men, and the hope was added that they would be found to have been good and true citizens, and peaceful children of their Great Father, the President.
When this was over, White Crow requested permission to transfer the medal he had received as a mark of friendship from the President, to his son, who stood beside him, and who had been chosen by the nation to fill his place as (356) chief, an office he was desirous of resigning. The speeches made upon this occasion, as interpreted by Paquette, the modest demeanor of the young man, and the dignified yet feeling manner of the father throughout, made the whole ceremony highly impressive; and when the latter took the medal from his neck and hung it around that of his son, addressing him a few appropriate words, I think no one could have witnessed the scene unmoved.
I had watched the countenances of the prisoners as they sat on the ground before me, while all these ceremonies were going forward. With one exception they were open, calm, and expressive of conscious innocence. Of that one I could not but admit there might be reasonable doubts. One was remarkably fine-looking — another was a boy of certainly not more than seventeen, and during the transfer of the medal he looked from one to the other, and listened to what was uttered by the speakers, with an air and expression of even childlike interest and satisfaction.
Our hearts felt sad for them as, the ceremonies finished, they were conducted by a file of soldiers and committed to the dungeon of the guard-house until such time as they should be summoned to attend the court appointed to try their cause.
ESCAPE OF THE PRISONERS.
The Indians did not disperse after the ceremonies of the surrender had been gone through. They continued still in the vicinity of the Portage, in the constant expectation of the arrival of the annuity money, which they had (357) been summoned there to receive. But the time for setting out on his journey to bring it was postponed by Governor Porter from week to week. Had he foreseen all the evils this delay was to occasion, he would, possibly, have been more prompt in fulfilling his appointment.
Many causes conspired to make an early payment desirable. In the first place, the Winnebagoes, having been driven from their homes by their anxiety to avoid all appearance of fraternizing with the Sauks, had made this year no gardens nor corn-fields. They had, therefore, no provisions on hand, either for present use or for their winter's consumption, except their scanty supplies of wild rice. While this was disappearing during their protracted detention at the Portage, they were running the risk of leaving themselves quite unprovided with food, in case of a bad hunting-season during the winter and spring.
In the next place, the rations which the Agent had been accustomed, by the permission of Government, to deal out occasionally to them, were now cut off by a scarcity in the Commissary's department. The frequent levies of the militia during the summer campaign, and the reinforcement of the garrison by the troops from Fort Howard, had drawn so largely on the stores at this post that there was necessity for the most rigid economy in the issuing of supplies.
Foreseeing this state of things, Mr. Kinzie, as soon as the war was at an end, commissioned Mr. Kercheval, then sutler at Fort Howard, to procure him a couple of boat-loads of corn, to be distributed among the Indians. Unfortunately, there was no corn to be obtained from Michigan; it was necessary to bring it from Ohio, and by the time it at length reached Green Bay (for in those days business was never done in a hurry) the navigation of the (358) Fox River had closed, and it was detained there, to be brought up the following spring.
As day after day wore on and "the silver" did not make its appearance, the Indians were advised by their Father to disperse to their hunting-grounds to procure food, with the promise that they should be summoned immediately on the arrival of Governor Porter; and this advice they followed.
While they had been in our neighborhood, they had more than once asked permission to dance the scalp-dance, before our door. This is the most frightful, heart-curdling exhibition that can possibly be imagined. The scalps are stretched on little hoops, or frames, and carried on the end of slender poles. These are brandished about in the course of the dance, with cries, shouts, and furious gestures. The women, who commence as spectators, becoming excited with the scene and the music which their own discordant notes help to make more deafening, rush in, seize the scalps from the hands of the owners, and toss them frantically about, with the screams and yells of demons. I have seen as many as forty or fifty scalps figuring in one dance. Upon one occasion one was borne by an Indian who approached quite near me, and I shuddered as I observed the long, fair hair, evidently that of a woman. Another Indian had the skin of a human hand, stretched and prepared with as much care as if it had been some costly jewel. When these dances occurred, as they sometimes did, by moonlight, they were peculiarly horrid and revolting.
Amid so many events of a painful character there were not wanting occasionally some that bordered on the ludicrous.
One evening, while sitting at tea, we were alarmed by (359) the sound of guns firing in the direction of the Wisconsin. All started up, and prepared, instinctively, for flight to the garrison. As we left the house we found the whole bluff and the meadow below in commotion, — Indians running with their guns and spears across their shoulders to the scene of alarm — squaws and children standing in front of their lodges and looking anxiously in the direction of the unusual and unaccountable sounds — groups of French and half-breeds, like ourselves, fleeing to gain the bridge and place themselves within the pickets so lately erected.
As one company of Indians passed us hurriedly, some weapon carelessly carried hit one of our party on the side of the head. "Oh!" shrieked she, "I am killed! an Indian has tomahawked me!" and she was only reassured by finding she could still run as fast as the best of us.
When we reached the parade-ground, within the Fort, we could not help laughing at the grotesque appearance we presented. Some without hats or shawls — others with packages of valuables hastily secured at the moment — one with her piece of bread-and-butter in hand, which she had not had the presence of mind to lay aside when she took to flight.
The alarm was, in the end, found to have proceeded from a party of Winnebagoes from one of the Barribault villages, who, being about to leave their home for a period, were going through the ceremony of burying the scalps which they and their fathers had taken.
Like the military funerals among civilized nations, their solemnities were closed on this occasion by the discharge of several volleys over the grave of their trophies.
At length, about the beginning of November, two months after the time appointed, Governor Porter, accompanied (360) by Major Forsyth and Mr. Kercheval, arrived with the annuity money. The Indians were again assembled, the payment was made, and having supplied themselves with a larger quantity of ammunition than usual, — for they saw the necessity of a good hunt to remedy past and present deficiencies, — they set off for their wintering grounds.
We were, ourselves, about changing our quarters, to our no small satisfaction. Notwithstanding the Indian disturbances, the new Agency House (permission to build which had, after much delay, been accorded by Government) had been going steadily on, and soon after the departure of the Governor and his party, we took possession of it.
We had been settled but a few weeks, when one morning Lieutenant Davies appeared just as we were sitting down to breakfast, with a face full of consternation. "The Indian prisoners had escaped from the black-hole! The commanding officer, Colonel Cutler, had sent for Mr. Kinzie to come over to the Fort and counsel with him what was to be done."
The prisoners had probably commenced their operations very soon after being placed in the black-hole, a dungeon in the basement of the guard-house. They observed that their meals were brought regularly, three times a day, and that in the intervals they were left entirely to themselves. With their knives they commenced excavating an opening, the earth from which, as it was withdrawn, they spread about on the floor of their prison. A blanket was placed over the hole, and one of the company was always seated upon it, before the regular time for the soldier who had charge of them to make his appearance. When the periodical visit was made, the Indians were always observed to be seated, smoking in the most orderly (361) and quiet manner. There was never anything in their appearance to excite suspicion.
The prisoners had never read the memoirs of Baron Trenck, but they had watched the proceedings of the badgers; so, profiting by their example, they worked on, shaping the opening spirally, until, in about six weeks, they came out to the open air beyond the walls of the Fort.
That they might be as little encumbered as possible in their flight, they left their blankets behind them, and although it was bitter December weather, they took to the woods and prairies with only their calico shirts and leggings for covering. We can readily believe that hope and exultation kept them comfortably warm until they reached an asylum among their friends.
It would be compromising our own reputation as loyal and patriotic citizens to tell of the secret rejoicing this news occasioned us.
The question now was, how to get the fugitives back again. The Agent could promise no more than that he would communicate with the chiefs, and represent the wishes of the officers that the prisoners should once more surrender themselves, and thus free those who had had the charge of them from the imputation of carelessness, which the Government would be very likely to throw upon them.
When, according to their custom, many of the chiefs assembled at the Agency on New-Year's Day, their Father laid the subject before them.
The Indians replied, that if they saw the young men they would tell them what the officers would like to have them do. They could, themselves, do nothing in the matter. They had fulfilled their engagement by bringing them once and putting them in the hands of the officers. (362) The Government had had them in its power once and could not keep them — it must now go and catch them itself.
The Government, having had some experience the past summer in "catching Indians," wisely concluded to drop the matter.
About this time another event occurred which occasioned no small excitement in our little community. Robineau, the striker from the blacksmith establishment at Sugar Creek, near the Four Lakes, arrived one very cold day at the Agency. He had come to procure medical aid for Mâtâ's eldest daughter, Sophy, who, while sliding on the lake, had fallen on the ice and been badly hurt. Her father was absent, having gone to Prairie du Chien to place his youngest daughter at school. Two or three days had elapsed since the accident had happened; a high fever had set in, and the poor girl was in a state of great suffering; it had therefore been thought best to send Robineau to us for advice and aid, leaving Turcotte and a friendly Indian woman from a neighboring lodge to take charge of poor Sophy.
The commanding officer did not think it prudent, when the subject was laid before him, to permit the surgeon to leave the post, but he very cheerfully granted leave of absence to Currie, the hospital steward, a young man who possessed some knowledge of medicine and surgery.
As it was important that Sophy should have an experienced nurse, we procured the services of Madame Bellaire, the wife of the Frenchman who was generally employed as express to Chicago; and, as an aid and companion, Agathe, a daughter of Day-kau-ray, who lived in Paquette's family, was added to the party.
Of Agathe I shall have more to say hereafter.
The weather was excessively cold when Robineau, Currie, and the two women set out for Sugar Creek, a (363) distance of about forty miles. We had provided them with a good store of rice, crackers, tea, and sugar, for the invalid, all of which, with their provisions for the way, were packed on the horse Robineau had ridden to the Portage. It was expected they would reach their place of destination on the second day.
What, then, was our surprise to see Turcotte make his appearance on the fourth day after their departure, to inquire why Robineau had not returned with aid for poor Sophy! There was but one solution of the mystery. Robineau had guided them as ill as he had guided the boat at the Grande Chute the summer before, and, although he could not shipwreck them, he had undoubtedly lost them in the woods or prairies. One comfort was, that they could not well starve, for the rice and crackers would furnish them with several days' provisions, and with Agathe, who must be accustomed to this kind of life, they could not fail in time of finding Indians, and being brought back to the Portage.
Still, day after day went on and we received no tidings of them. Turcotte returned to Sugar Creek with comforts and prescriptions for Sophy, and Colonel Cutler sent out a party to hunt for the missing ones, among whom poor Currie, from his delicate constitution, was the object of our greatest commiseration.
As the snow fell and the winds howled, we could employ ourselves about nothing but walking from window to window, watching, in hopes of seeing some one appear in the distance. No Indians were at hand whom we could dispatch upon the search, and by the tenth day we had almost given up in despair.
It was then that the joyful news was suddenly brought us, "They are found! They are at the Fort!" A party of soldiers who had been exploring had encountered them (364) at Hastings's Woods, twelve miles distant, slowly and feebly making their way back to the Portage. They knew they were on the right track, but had hardly strength to pursue it.
Exhausted with cold and hunger, for their provisions had given out two days before, they had thought seriously of killing the horse and eating him. Nothing but Currie's inability to proceed on foot, and the dread of being compelled to leave him in the woods to perish, had deterred them.
Agathe had from the first been convinced that they were on the wrong track, but Robineau, with his usual obstinacy, persevered in keeping it until it brought them to the Rock River, when he was obliged to acknowledge his error, and they commenced retracing their steps.
Agathe, according to the custom of her people, had carried her hatchet with her, and thus they had always had a fire at night, and boughs to shelter them from the storms; otherwise they must inevitably have perished.
There were two circumstances which aroused in us a stronger feeling even than that of sympathy. The first was, the miserable Robineau's having demanded of Currie, first, all his money, and afterwards his watch, as a condition of his bringing the party back into the right path, which he averred he knew perfectly well.
The second was, Bellaire's giving his kind, excellent wife a hearty flogging "for going off," as he said, "on such a fool's errand."
The latter culprit was out of our jurisdiction, but Mons. Robineau was discharged on the spot, and warned that he might think himself happy to escape a legal process for swindling.
I am happy to say that Sophy Mâtâ, in whose behalf all these sufferings had been endured, was quite recovered by the time her father returned from the Prairie.
AGATHE — TOMAH.
(365) Agathe was the daughter of an Indian who was distinguished by the name of Rascal Day-kau-ray. Whether he merited the appellation must be determined hereafter. He was brother to the grand old chief of that name, but as unlike him as it is possible for those of the same blood to be.
The Day-kau-rays were a very handsome family, and this daughter was remarkable for her fine personal endowments. A tall, well-developed form, a round, sweet face, and that peculiarly soft, melodious voice which belongs to the women of her people, would have attracted the attention of a stranger, while the pensive expression of her countenance irresistibly drew the hearts of all towards her, and prompted the wish to know more of her history. As I received it from her friend, Mrs. Paquette, it was indeed a touching one.
A young officer at the Fort had seen her, and had set, I will not say his heart — it may be doubted if he had one — but his mind upon her. He applied to Paquette to negotiate what he called a marriage with her. I am sorry to say that Paquette was induced to enter into this scheme. He knew full well the sin of making false representations to the family of Agathe, and he knew the misery he was about to bring upon her.
The poor girl had been betrothed to a young man of her own people, and, as is generally the case, the attachment on both sides was very strong. Among these simple (366) people, who have few subjects of thought or speculation beyond the interests of their daily life, their affections and their animosities form the warp and woof of their character. All their feelings are intense, from being concentrated on so few objects. Family relations, particularly with the women, engross the whole amount of their sensibilities.
The marriage connection is a sacred and indissoluble tie. I have read, in a recent report to the Historical Society of Wisconsin, that, in former times, a temporary marriage between a white man and a Menomonee woman was no uncommon occurrence, and that such an arrangement brought no scandal, I am afraid that if such eases were investigated, a good deal of deceit and misrepresentation would be found to have been added to the other sins of the transaction; and that the woman would be found to have been a victim, instead of a willing participant, in such a connection.
At all events, no system of this kind exists among the Winnebagoes. The strictest sense of female propriety is a distinguishing trait among them. A woman who transgresses it is said to have "forgotten herself," and is sure to be cast off and "forgotten" by her friends.
The marriage proposed between the young officer and the daughter of Day-kau-ray, was understood as intended to be true and lasting. The father would not have exposed himself to the contempt of his whole nation by selling his daughter to become the mistress of any man. The Day-kau-rays, as I have elsewhere said, were not a little proud of a remote cross of French blood which mingled with the aboriginal stream in their veins, and probably in acceding to the proposed connection the father of Agathe was as much influenced by what he considered the honor to be (367) derived as by the amount of valuable presents which accompanied the overtures made to him.
Be that as it may, the poor girl was torn from her lover, and transferred from her father's lodge to the quarters of the young officer.
There were no ladies in the garrison at that time. Had there been, such a step would hardly have been ventured. Far away in the wilderness, shut out from the salutary influences of religious and social cultivation, what wonder that the moral sense sometimes becomes blinded, and that the choice is made, "Evil, be thou my good!"
The first step in wrong was followed by one still more aggravated in cruelty. The young officer left the post, as he said, on furlough, but he never returned. The news came after a time that he was married, and when he again joined his regiment it was at another post.
There was a natural feeling in the strength of the "woe pronounced against him" by more tongues than one. "He will never," said my informant, "dare show himself in this country again! Not an Indian who knows the Day-kau-rays but would take his life if he should meet him!"
Every tie was broken for poor Agathe but that which bound her to her infant. She never returned to her father's lodge, for she felt that, being deserted, she was dishonored. Her sole ambition seemed to be to bring up her child like those of the whites. She attired it in the costume of the French children, with a dress of bright calico, and a cap of the same, trimmed with narrow black lace. It was a fine child, and the only time I ever saw a smile cross her face was when it was commended and caressed by some member of our family.
Even this, her only source of happiness, poor Agathe was called upon to resign. During our absence at Green Bay, (368) while the Sauks were in the neighborhood, the child was taken violently ill. The house at Paquette's, which was the mother's home, was thronged with Indians, and of course there was much noise and disturbance. My husband had a place prepared for her under our roof, where she could be more quiet, and receive the attendance of the post physician. It was all in vain — nothing could save the little creature's life. The bitter agony of the mother, as she hung over the only treasure she possessed on earth, was described to me as truly heart-rending. When compelled to part with it, it seemed almost more than nature could bear. There were friends, not of her own nation or color, who strove to comfort her. Did the father ever send a thought or an inquiry after the fate of his child, or of the young being whose life he had rendered dark and desolate? We will hope that he did — that he repented and asked pardon from above for the evil he had wrought.
Agathe had been baptized by M. Mazzuchelli. Perhaps she may have acquired some religious knowledge which could bring her consolation in her sorrows, and compensate her for the hopes and joys so early blasted.
She came, some months after the death of her child, in company with several of the half-breed women of the neighborhood, to pay me a visit of respect and congratulation on the advent of the young Shaw-nee-aw-kee. When she looked at her "little brother," as he was called, and took his soft, tiny hand within her own, the tears stood in her eyes, and she spoke some little words of tenderness, which showed that her heart was full. I could scarcely refrain from mingling my tears with hers, as I thought on all the sorrow and desolation that one man's selfishness had occasioned.
(373) What we had long anticipated of the sufferings of the Indians began to manifest itself as the spring drew on. Its extent was first brought to our knowledge by those who came in little parties begging for food.
As long as it was possible to issue occasional rations their Father continued to do so, but the supplies in the Commissary Department were now so much reduced that Colonel Cutler did not feel justified in authorizing anything beyond a scanty relief, and this only in extreme cases.
We had ourselves throughout the winter used the greatest economy with our own stores, that we might not exhaust our slender stock of flour and meal before it could be replenished from "below." We had even purchased some sour flour which had been condemned by the commissary, and had contrived, by a plentiful use of salcratus and a due proportion of potatoes, to make of it a very palatable kind of bread. But as we had continued to give to party after party, when they would come to us to represent their famishing condition, the time at length arrived when we had nothing to give.
The half-breed families of the neighborhood, who had, like ourselves, continued to share with the needy as long as their own stock lasted, were now obliged, of necessity, to refuse further assistance. These women often came to lament with us over the sad accounts that were brought from the wintering grounds. It had been a very open (374) winter. The snow had scarcely been enough at any time to permit the Indians to track the deer; in fact, all the game had been driven off by the troops and war-parties scouring the country through the preceding summer.
We heard of their dying by companies from mere inanition, and lying stretched in the road to the Portage, whither they were striving to drag their exhausted frames. Soup made of the bark of the slippery elm, or stewed acorns, were the only food that many had subsisted on for weeks.
We had for a long time received our own food by daily rations from the garrison, for things had got to such a pass that there was no possibility of obtaining a barrel of flour at a time. After our meals were finished I always went into the pantry, and collecting carefully every remaining particle of food set it aside, to be given to some of the wretched applicants by whom we were constantly thronged.
One day as I was thus employed, a face appeared at the window with which I had once been familiar. It was the pretty daughter of the elder Day-kau-ray. She had formerly visited us often, watching with great interest our employments — our sewing, our weeding and cultivating the garden, or our reading. Of the latter, I had many times endeavored to give her some idea, showing her the plates in the Family Bible, and doing my best to explain them to her, but of late I had quite lost sight of her. Now, how changed, how wan she looked! As I addressed her with my ordinary phrase, "Tshah-ko-zhah?" (What is it?) she gave a sigh that was almost a sob. She did not beg, but her countenance spoke volumes.
I took my dish and handed it to her, expecting to see her devour the contents eagerly; but no — she took it, and, making signs that she would soon return, walked away. (375) When she brought it back, I was almost sure she had not tasted a morsel herself.
Oh! the boats — the boats with the corn! they not come? We both wrote and sent to hasten them, but, alas! everything and everybody moved so slowly in those unenterprising times! We could only feel sure that they would come when they were ready, and not a moment before.
We were soon obliged to keep both doors and windows fast, to shut out the sight of misery we could not relieve. If a door were opened for the admission of a member of the family, some wretched mother would rush in, grasp the hand of my infant, and, placing that of her famishing child within it, tell us, pleadingly, that he was imploring "his little brother" for food. The stoutest man could not have beheld with dry eyes the heart-rending spectacle which often presented itself. It was in vain that we screened the lower portion of our windows with curtains. They would climb up on the outside, and tier upon tier of gaunt, wretched faces would peer in above, to watch us, and see if indeed we were as ill provided as we represented ourselves.
The noble old Day-kau-ray came one day, from the Barribault, to apprise us of the state of his village. More than forty of his people, he said, had now been for many days without food, save bark and roots. My husband accompanied him to the commanding officer to tell his story and ascertain if any amount of food could be obtained from that quarter. The result was, the promise of a small allowance of flour, sufficient to alleviate the cravings of his own family.
When this was explained to the chief, he turned away. (376) "No," he said, "if his people could not be relieved, he and his family would starve with them!" And he refused, for those nearest and dearest to him, the proffered succor, until all could share alike.
The announcement, at length, that "the boats were in sight," was a thrilling and most joyful sound.
Hundreds of poor creatures were assembled on the bank, watching their arrival. Oh! how torturing was their slow approach, by the winding course of the river, through the extended prairie! As the first boat touched the land, we, who were gazing on the scene with anxiety and impatience only equalled by that of the sufferers, could scarcely refrain from laughing, to see old Wild-Cat, who had somewhat fallen off in his huge amount of flesh, seize "the Washington Woman" in his arms and hug and dance with her in the ecstasy of his delight.
Their Father made a sign to them all to fall to work with their hatchets, which they had long held ready, and in an incredibly short time barrel after barrel of corn was broken open and emptied, while even the little children possessed themselves of pans and kettles full, and hastened to the fires that were blazing around to parch and cook that which they had seized.
From this time forward, there was no more destitution. The present abundance was immediately followed by the arrival of supplies for the Commissary's Department; and, refreshed and invigorated, our poor children departed once more to their villages, to make ready their crops for the ensuing season.
In the course of the spring, we received a visit from the Rev. Mr. Kent and Mrs. Kent, of Galena. This event is memorable, as being the first occasion on which the gospel, according to the Protestant faith, was preached at Fort Winnebago. The large parlor of the hospital was (377) fitted up for the service, and gladly did we each say to the other, "Let us go to the house of the Lord!"
For nearly three years had we lived here without the blessing of a public service of praise and thanksgiving. We regarded this commencement as an omen of better times, and our little "sewing-society" worked with renewed industry, to raise a fund which might be available hereafter in securing the permanent services of a missionary.
Not long after this, on a fine spring morning, as we were seated at breakfast, a party of Indians entered the parlor, and came to the door of the room where we were. Two of them passed through, and went out upon a small portico — the third remained standing in the door-way at which he had at first appeared. He was nearly opposite me, and as I raised my eyes, spite of his change of dress, and the paint with which he was covered, I at once recognized him.
I continued to pour the coffee, and, as I did so, I remarked to my husband, "The one behind you, with whom you are speaking, is one of the escaped prisoners."
Without turning his head, Mr. Kinzie continued to listen to all the directions they were giving him about the repairing of their guns, traps, etc., which they wished to leave with the blacksmith. As they went on, he carelessly turned towards the parlor door, and replied to the one speaking to him. When he again addressed me, it was to say, —
"You are right, but it is no affair of ours. We are none of us to look so as to give him notice that we suspect anything. They are undoubtedly innocent, and have suffered enough already."
(378) Contrary to his usual custom, their Father did not ask their names, but wrote their directions, which he tied to their different implements, and then bade them go and deliver them themselves to M. Morrin.
The rest of our circle were greatly pleased at the young fellow's audacity, and we quite longed to tell the officers that we could have caught one of their fugitives for them, if we had had a mind.
The time had now come when we began to think seriously of leaving our pleasant home, and taking up our residence at Detroit, while making arrangements for a permanent settlement at Chicago.
This intelligence, when communicated to our Winnebago children, brought forth great lamentations and demonstrations of regret. From the surrounding country they came flocking in, to inquire into the truth of the tidings they had heard, and to petition earnestly that we would continue to live and die among them.
Among them all, no one seemed so overwhelmed with affliction as Elizabeth, our poor Cut-Nose. When we first told her of our intention, she sat for hours in the same spot, wiping away the tears that would find their way down her cheeks, with the corner of the chintz shawl she wore pinned across her bosom.
"No! never, never, never shall I find such friends again," she would exclaim. "You will go away, and I shall be left here all alone."
Wild-Cat, too, the fat, Jolly Wild-Cat, gave way to the most audible lamentations.
"Oh, my little brother," he said to the baby, on the morning of our departure, when he had insisted on taking (379) him and seating him on his fat, dirty knee, "you will never come back to see your poor brother again!"
And, having taken an extra glass on the occasion, he wept like an infant.
It was with sad hearts that on the morning of the 1st of July, 1833, we bade adieu to the long cortege which had followed us to the boat, now waiting to convey us to Green Bay, where we were to meet Governor Porter and Mr. Brush, and proceed, under their escort, to Detroit.
When they had completed their tender farewells, they turned to accompany their Father across the Portage, on his route to Chicago; and long after, we could see them winding along the road, and hear their loud lamentations at a parting which they foresaw would be forever.
Notes to the Text
1 The site of the town of Nee-nah.
2 The bark of the red willow, scraped fine, which is preferred by the Indians to tobacco.
3 General Cass was then Governor of Michigan, and Superintendent of the Northwestern Indians.
4 Only look! what inventions! what wonders!
5 Burns's house stood near the spot where the Agency Building, or "Cobweb Castle," was afterwards erected, at the foot of N. State Street[, Chicago].
6 It will be remembered that these were the arguments used at a period when the Indians possessed most of the broad lands on the Upper Mississippi and its tributaries when they were still allowed some share of the blessings of life.
7 As "the venerable Joseph Crely" has become historic from his claim to have reached the age of one hundred and thirty-nine years, I will state that at this period (1832) he was a hale, hearty man of sixty years or less.
8 The Indians who had "been at Washington" were very fond of calling their Father thus. Black Wolf's son would go further, and vociferate "K'hizzie," to show his familiarity.
9 General Atkinson.
The Notes of Reuben Gold Thwaites (1901 edition).
a nt. 34 — The present Island Park, an Oshkosh summer resort.
b nt. 90 — Mrs. Kinzie here corrects a popular misconception regarding the division of labor in an aboriginal household. In a primitive stage, the Indian male of proper age and normal strength devoted himself to the chase, to war, and the council, leaving to the females the care of the household, which included the cultivation of crops and the carrying of burdens. Aiding the females were those males who were too young, or otherwise incapacitated for the arduous duties of the warrior; also, slaves taken or bought from other tribes. Before whites or strangers of their own race, the Indian warrior disdained to be seen at menial occupations but in the privacy of his own people he not infrequently assisted his women.
c nt. 99 — Joseph Crelie was the father-in-law of Pierre Paquette. He had been a voyageur and small fur-trader at Prairie du Chien as early as 1791, and in the early coming of the whites (about 1836) obtained much notoriety from claiming to be of phenomenal age. He died at Caledonia, Wis., in 1865, at a time when he asserted himself to be one hundred and thirty years old; but a careful inquiry has resulted in establishing his years at one hundred.
|Juliette Kinzie, from Wau-Bun||Juliette Kinzie and Her Daughter, Eleanor (Nellie)||Nellie Kinzie Gordon, 1857||Juliette Gordon Low (1860-1927),
Founder of the Girl Scouts
"Juliette Kinzie" — Juliette Augusta Magill was born in Middletown, Connecticut on September 11, 1806. When she was 14, her family moved to New York state. At the age of 15, she was admitted to the revolutionary Troy Female Seminary, a school founded by Emma Willard that taught girls subjects usually reserved for boys. Her father, however, was no longer able to afford the tuition, so she returned home before the year was out. The family then moved to Fishkill, New York.
During the next two years she prepared two of her brothers for college, coaching them especially in Latin. French she spoke fluently, and she read Spanish and Italian with ease. In later years, in Chicago, she took up German, which she read, wrote and spoke with facility. She was an excellent musician, playing both piano and organ. She painted in water colors, and sketched from nature rapidly and accurately. All the illustrations in "Waubun" are from views she took on the spot.1
In her early education she had been tutored by her uncle, Dr. Alexander Wolcott, who in 1820 accepted a position at Ft. Dearborn as a physician and Indian Agent. They exchanged correspondence in which he fascinated her with his accounts of frontier life in what was to become Chicago. When Dr. Wolcott returned home for a visit in 1823, he brought with him a true born and bred frontiersman, John Kinzie. She married him on August 9, 1830, and moved to Ft. Winnebago in what was to become Wisconsin.2 It is this period in her life, from 1830-1833 that is the subject of her book Wau-Bun. After this adventure, they established themselves in the infant town of Chicago, making their new brick home at the northeast corner of Cass Street and Michigan Avenue, where they were social leaders in the "village of Chicago." She was one of the leading figures in the construction of St. James Church.
John H. Kinzie and Mrs. Juliette A. Kinzie, with Gurdon S. Hubbard, may be considered, more than any others, the founders of St. James' Church. ... Indeed, such was the prominence and activity of Mrs. John H. Kinzie, in the early days of the Protestant Episcopal Church of Illinois, that she was sometimes called The Female Bishop of Illinois.3
At the urging of her mother-in-law, she wrote, in 1844, "Narrative of the Massacre at Chicago, August 15, 1812, and of Some Preceding Events."4 This popular little book was followed in 1856 with Wau-Bun, The "Early Day" in the North-west.5 In 1869, she published a novel, Walter Ogilby, based on her experiences in Fishkill as a teenager. In 1870, she was at work on another novel based upon the figure of Redbird, entitled Mark Logan, The Bourgeois, which was not published until 1887. During this time, for unknown reasons, she had been using the drug quinine which is primarily taken for malaria. As her daughter Nellie Gordon informs us,
In 1870 Mrs. Kinzie joined her daughter and grandchildren, who were spending the summer at Amagansett, on Long Island. On the evening of September 14th she sent to the local physician for some two-grain [130 mg.] quinine pills. He sent morphine pills, instead of quinine, in a paper without a label. Mrs. Kinzie took one, and by the time the fatal mistake was discovered it was too late for the most powerful remedies to take effect. In four hours she was dead.6
The normal dosage for quinine is 648 mg. (10 grains), whereas a dosage of 60-200 mg. (0.1-3 grains) of morphine is fatal, causing unconsciousness and cessation of breathing. Thus she died on September 15, 1870. In her eulogy, Rev. Dr. Clinton Locke said,
No woman in the Northwest was more widely known than Juliette Kinzie, and when the future history of the early days of this magic city shall be written, her life and labors as a member of Christ's church, as a woman of the highest culture and most refined taste, as a faithful wife, devoted mother, kind and generous neighbor, and true American lady, will illuminate its brightest pages.7
Postscript. The Kinzie Children.
The genealogy of the Kinzies is given in Fergus Historical Series, #30, as an addendum to Juliette Kinzie's "Massacre at Chicago," which was reprinted in Chapters 18-19 of Wau-Bun.
"young Shaw-nee-aw-kee" — Alexander Wolcott Kinzie, born in Wisconsin on July 12, 1833, named after Juliette's uncle Alexander Wolcott, died at age six on October 4, 1839 in Chicago.8 His sister, Nellie, recounts his fate:
In 1838, little Wolcott Kinzie met with a sudden and tragic death. While playing with a party of other boys in an empty house a couple of blocks from home he found a bottle of corrosive sublimate on the hearth. He picked it up and took a drink of the contents. The agony was instantaneous. He rushed home, while all his little companions fled in dismay. Although three physicians were immediately summoned it was impossible to save his life.9
"Corrosive sublimate" is an old name for mercuric chloride (HgCl₂), which attacks the kidneys and gastrointestinal tract. At the time, this salt of mercury was used in developing film.10
Eleanor Lytle Kinzie was born June 18, 1835, in Ft. Dearborn in what is now Chicago, Illinois. Eleanor, known as "Nellie," two portraits of whom are shown above, married General William W. Gordon of Savannah, Georgia on December 21, 1857. They had six children.11 Eleanor’s daughter, Juliette Gordon (1860-1927), was an American youth leader who, in 1912, founded of the Girl Scouts of America. In that same year, Nellie published, "John Kinzie, a Sketch."12 There exists an interesting letter by her that she wrote to a newspaper editor in 1916:
My attention has been called to an article in The Daily News of Sept. 7, giving a list of the oldest and earliest citizens of Chicago. I notice that my name is conspicuously absent. This is more surprising, as I am the oldest person now living who was born in Chicago—on June 18, 1835. I am, therefore, older than Chicago itself, which was not incorporated as a city until several years after my birth. Although I have lived in Savannah, Ga., sixty years, Chicago ever remains the beloved of my youth and the pride of my old age. My grandfather, John Kinzie, was Chicago`s first settler (1804), and the land he owned is still mentioned in legal transactions as "Kinzie's addition." I well remember the first census taken of Chicago. I attended the school of a Mrs. Elmore, corner of Michigan Avenue and Lake Street. As my home was on the north side (corner of Cass and Michigan streets), I had to cross the river at Rush Street on a flat scow hauled across by a cable rope propelled by a ferryman with a sort of hockey stick. It landed us at the foot of Fort Dearborn barracks, through whose parade grounds we passed to school. The teacher one day requested all the pupils to wait after school, as she had something very interesting to tell us. "Children," said she, "I wish to tell you that we have had a census taken of our town, and we have 6,000 inhabitants!" And she added, impressively, "I should not be surprised if some of you children should live to see the day when we have 10,000!" Rash woman! The first church built in Chicago, the original St. James Episcopal, (corner Cass and Illinois Streets), was erected by three men. John H. Kinzie, my father, and George N. Dole, furnished the money; and my uncle, Robert A. Kinzie, gave the land for the church and parsonage. I am of the opinion, therefore, that anything relating to early Chicago should include my name. NELLIE KINZIE GORDON13
She died on February 22, 1917, while visiting the family vacation spot at Amagansett on Long Island, New York, where her mother had also died. She is buried in Savannah, Georgia.14
|John H. Kinzie, Jr.||U.S.S. Mound City|
John H. Kinzie, Jr. was born on October 21, 1838. He was educated as a civil engineer at the Polytechnic Institute of Ann Arbor, Michigan. When the Civil War broke out, like his other brothers, he volunteered for the Union cause. He was assigned to a Navy gunboat, the USS Mound City, as 3rd Master.
While attacking a fort on the White River, a shot from the fort's battery penetrated the boiler of the Mound City. In the terrific explosion that followed, young Kinzie and more than ninety others were scalded and blown overboard. The hospital boat of the fleet immediately set out to rescue the wounded men. As Kinzie struck out for the boat, his friend Augustus Taylor, of Cairo, called out to him to keep out of the range of the fort as the sharp-shooters were evidently picking off the wounded men in the water. This proved to be true; young Kinzie was shot through the legs and arms by minié balls as he was being lifted into the boat. He soon heard the shouts of his comrades; and turning to one of his friends, he said, “We have taken the fort. I am ready to die now.” He sank rapidly and died the following morning, June 18, just as the sun was rising.15
He had recently been married, and in 1862 his wife Elvenah was pregnant with the couple's first child, Laura Magill Kinzie, born August 31, 1862.16
Captain Arthur Magill Kinzie was born Chicago Mar 24 1841. When the Civil War broke out, he signed up for Company B, 9th Regiment of Illinois Cavalry, and was commissioned a Lieutenant on September 25, 1861. The following year he was promoted to Captain. Being the nephew of Gen. David Hunter (who married Maria Kinzie), Arthur was able to serve on his staff for two years, which tenure he witnessed the capture of Fort Pulaski in Savannah, Georgia, in April, 1862. By 1864, he had become an aide-de-camp to General Cadwallader C. Washburn. On August 21, 1864, Confederate General Nathan Bedford Forrest launched a daring raid on Memphis in order to capture the Union Generals there and to free Confederate prisoners in the local jail. They raided the hotel where they were headquartered, but Gen. Washburn fled out a back alley in his night shirt and made good his escape. However, Kinzie was not so lucky. Both he and his brother George, who happened by coincidence to be visiting him, were taken captive and sent to the POW prison at Cahawba, Alabama. They were both freed by decree of President Jefferson Davis who personally knew their father from his days at Ft. Winnebago. After the War, on May 23, 1867, he married 17 year old Chicago resident Caroline Gilbert Wilson. They had 6 children. He died in Riverside (near Chicago) on May 10, 1902.17
Julian Magill Kinzie was born in Chicago on February 7, 1843. This child was given the masculine version of our author's maiden name, but he died six weeks after his birth.18
Francis William Kinzie was born in Chicago, July 13, 1844. He was another boy who died at age 6 (on July 30, 1850).19 His sister Nellie, who was 14 years old at the time, tells us,
The cholera raged in Chicago in 1850-51. Little Frank Kinzie was one of its earliest victims. There were no trained nurses in those days, and the only assistance to be had in cases of illness was through the voluntary aid of friends and neighbors. In spite of the danger of infection, Mr. and Mrs. Kinzie devoted all their time to nursing the sick, and kept the hospital supplied daily with huge caldrons of broth.20
George Herbert Kinzie was born in Chicago on October 22, 1846. He happened to be visiting his brother Arthur, when Nathan Bedford Forrest raided Memphis in 1864. Both he and his brother were captured. He was eventually released from the POW prison at Cahawba, Alabama, by order of Jefferson Davis himself. He was a civil appointee to the U. S. Army in 1873, commissioned as a First Lieutenant in the 15th Infantry. On June 10, 1874, he married Mary Blatchford with whom he had three children. He died on August 26, 1890.21
"Fort Malden" — a British fort built in 1795 near where the Detroit River empties into Lake Erie in Upper Canada (Ontario). It was officially named "Fort Amherstburg," but because of its location in the village of Malden, it has been unofficially known as "Fort Malden."22 In July of 1812, the American General Hull crossed over into Upper Canada, and several days later engaged a patrol from Ft. Malden resulting in the first casualties of the War of 1812. With a force out of Ft. Malden, British General Brock captured Detroit in August of that year. However, in 1813, due to strategic concerns, the British had to withdraw from western Upper Canada, and the had to burn the fort in their retreat.23 After the war, the rebuilt fort was instrumental in repelling private American militias who entered Canadian territory in 1837 and 1838.24 After serving for a time (1859-1875) as an insane asylum, the fort fell into private hands for a period.25 In 1935 it was made into an historic site, remaining as such today.26
|Madeline La Framboise||The Altar of St. Anne's Church||Fort Malden, ca. 1840|
"Madame Laframboise" — born Marguerite-Magdelaine Marcot of mixed French and Ottawa blood, Madeline La Framboise (1780–1846) became one of the most successful fur traders in the whole of the Northwest Territory. Her father, who was a French fur trader, was killed in 1783. The family moved to the Ojibwe village of Lac Courtes Oreilles near what is now Grand Haven, Michigan. As a result, Madeline became fluent in Odawa, Ojibwe, French, and English.27 Operating out of Mackinac Island, she and her husband Joseph La Framboise, developed a prosperous fur trading business. After the murder of her husband in 1806, she continued and even expanded her trading business, and became prosperous enough to send her children to French schools in Montreal. In 1822, she sold her business and retired a wealthy woman at age 41.28 She donated the land on which Ste. Anne's Church was built, and at her death was interred beneath its altar.
"engagés" — its literal meaning is, "those who are engaged (employed)." Paradigmatically, the engagés were hired hands whose job it was to assist the voyageurs in their work in the fur trade. Hired subordinates who were also engaged in other aspects of this trade might also be called engagés. The voyageurs used a large bateaux whose "... cargo was placed in the center both ends being sharp and high above the water. The crew generally consisted of seven men (voyageurs), of whom six rowed and one served as steersman; in addition, each boat was commanded by a clerk of the fur company, who was called the bourgeois (master). During rainstorms the cargo was protected by snug-fitting tarpaulins fastened down and over the sides of the boat." (Thwaites, nt. 6)
"the Portage" — now the city of Portage, Wisconsin. To the Hočągara it was Wawá’ą, essentially of the same meaning. (Kinzie, Jipson, Miner) With respect to Europeans, the place was first used as a portage by the explorers Marquette and Joliet on June 14, 1673. To the French, it became known simply as le portage. A trading post was set up in 1792, after which a thriving business was conducted porting boats of any size over the mud flats using teams of oxen. In 1824, the American Fur Company hired the Hočąk translator, Pierre Pauquette, who was fluent in Hočąk, French, and English, to run its operations there. On the Fox River side of the portage, the government built Fort Winnebago in 1828.29
|John Kinzie in 1827||John Kinzie Later in Life||The Old John Kinzie House in Chicago|
"husband" — John Harris Kinzie was one of the earliest settlers of Chicago, his parents having moved there from Detroit in 1804. In his youth among the Indians, he excelled in lacrosse and in foot racing. A sketch of his life, written by his wife Juliette, the author of Wau-Bun, is presented here in full.
(21) Col. John H. Kinzie was born at Sandwich, U. C [Upper Canada = Ontario], on the 7th of July, 1803. It was not by design that his birthplace was in the British Dominions, for his mother was patriotic beyond most of her sex but having crossed the river from Detroit, the place of her temporary sojourn, to pass the day with her sister, Mrs. William Forsyth, it so happened that before evening her eldest son drew his first breath on a foreign soil. While still an infant he was carried in an Indian cradle, on the shoulders of a French "engagé," to their home, at what is now the town of Bartram, on the St. Joseph River, in Michigan. At one of their ceremonies, on the journey, he made a narrow escape with his life, owing to the carelessness of his bearer in placing him against a tree in the immediate proximity of a blazing fire. A spark escaping, lodged in the neck of his dress, causing a fearful burn, of which he carried the mark ever after.
His father having purchased the trading establishment of Mons. Le Mai, at the mouth of the Chicago River, removed with his family to the place on the following year. Some companies of infantry, under command of Maj. John Whistler, arrived at the same time—4th of July—and commenced the construction of Fort Dearborn.
At his home, on the banks of the river, nearly opposite the fort, the childhood of Mr. Kinzie was passed, until the breaking out of the war of 1812.
The frontier at that day afforded no facilities for education. What children contrived to scramble into must be acquired under the paternal roof. Mr. Kinzie loved to describe his delight upon one occasion, when on the opening of a chest of tea, among the stores brought by the annual schooner, a spelling-book was drawn forth and presented to him. His cousin, Robert Forsyth, at that (22) time a member of his father's family, undertook to teach him to read, and, although there seems to have been but little patience and forbearance on the part of the young pedagogue to sweeten the task of learning, the exercises gave to the pupil a pleasant association with the fragrance of green tea, which always kept that spelling-book fresh in his mind. A discharged soldier was upon one occasion engaged to take charge of him, along with the officer's children, but the teacher's habits of drunkenness and irregularity caused the school to be discontinued in less than three months. His best friend in those days was Washington Whistler, a son of the commanding officer, in after years a distinguished civil engineer in his own country, and in the service of the Emperor of Russia.
AT THE TIME OF THE MASSACRE, IN l8l2, Kinzie was nine years of age. He preserved a distinct recollection of all the particulars that came under his own observation. The discipline of these thrilling events doubtless helped to form in him that fearlessness as well as that self-control which characterized his manly years. The circumstances of the massacre are familiar to all. When the troops left the garrison, some friendly chiefs, knowing what was in contemplation by their young men, who would not be restrained, took possession of the boat in which was Mrs. Kinzie and her children, and guarded them safely till the fighting was over. They were the next day escorted by the Chief "Robinson," and other friends, in their boat, to the St. Joseph River, to the home of Mme. Bertrand, a sister of the famous Chief To-pee-nee-bee-haw, whence, after a short sojourn, they were carried to Detroit, and delivered as prisoners of war to the British commanding officer, Col. McKee. The family, after the father rejoined them in the following winter, were established in the old family mansion, on the corner of Jefferson avenue and Wayne street, Detroit.
One of the saddest features of the ensuing winter was the spectacle of the suffering of the American prisoners, who were from time to time brought into headquarters by their Indian captors. The tenderness of feeling, which was a distinguishing trait m the subject of this sketch, made him ever foremost in his efforts to bargain with the savages for the ransom of the sufferers, and many were thus rescued, and nursed, and cared for --sometimes to the salvation of their lives, though too often to merely a mitigation of the tortures they had undergone. Mr. Kinzie, Sr., had been paroled by Gen. Proctor, but upon a suspicion that he was in correspondence with Gen. Harrison, who was known to be (23) meditating an attempt to recover the city of Detroit, he was seized and sent a prisoner to Canada, leaving his wife and young family to be cared for as they might, until, after the lapse of some months, the capture of the place by Gen. Harrison secured them a fast friend in that noble and excellent man.
The father was at length released and restored to his family, with one solitary shilling in his pocket. That little coin has always been carefully preserved by his descendants, as a memento of those troublous times. It so happened that in Detroit, as upon more remote frontiers, the advantages of education were extremely limited. In the four years' sojourn of the family in this place the children had occasional opportunities of beginning at a school which promised well, but which, as a general rule, was discontinued at the end of the first quarter. Amid such unpropitious circumstances were the rising generation at that day obliged to acquire what degree of learning they found it possible to attain.
In 1816, the Kinzie family RETURNED TO THEIR DESOLATED HOME IN CHICAGO. The bones of the murdered soldiers, who had fallen four years before, were still lying unburied where they had fallen. The troops who rebuilt the fort collected and interred these remains. The coffins which contained them were deposited near the bank of the river, which then had its outlet about at the foot of Madison street. The cutting through the sand-bar for the harbor caused the lake to encroach and wash away the earth, exposing the long range of coffins and their contents, which were afterwards cared for and reinterred by the civil authorities.
In the year 1818, when he was in his sixteenth year, Col. Kinzie was taken by his father to Mackinaw, to be indentured to the "American Fur Company," and placed under the care of Ramsey Crooks, Esq., "to learn," as the articles express it, "the art and mystery of merchandising in all its various parts and branches."
This engagement was for five years, during which time he was never off the island, except upon one occasion, when he was taken by Mr. Robert Stewart, who succeeded Mr. Crooks at the head of the company, to visit the British officers at Drummond Island. He was never during this period at an evening entertainment, never saw "a show," except one representation by an indifferent company, who had strayed up the lakes, of some pantomimes and tricks of sleight of hand.
His days were passed, from 5 o'clock in the morning till tea-time, in the warehouse or in superintending the numerous engagés, making up outfits for the Indian trade, or receiving the packs and commodities which arrived from time to time.
(24) In the evening, he read aloud to his kind and excellent friend, Mrs. Stewart, who was unwearied in her efforts to supply the deficiencies which his unsettled and eventful life had made inevitable. To her explanations and judicious criticisms upon the books he read, and her patience in imparting knowledge from her own well-stored mind, he was indebted for the ambition which surmounted early disadvantages, and made him the equal of many whose youthful years have been trained in schools.
MR. STEWART WAS A SEVERE DISCIPLINARIAN. He believed that the surest way to make of a clerk a systematic and methodical man of business was never to overlook the slightest departure from the prescribed routine of duty. Upon one occasion, young Kinzie, out of patience with the slow-dragging movements of a party of his employes, who were engaged in hauling wood in sledges across the straits from Bois Blank Island, took the reins from the hands of one, and drove across and returned with his load, to show the men how much more they could have accomplished if they had made the effort. Mr. Stewart's commendation was, "Ah, you have changed your occupation for that of hauling wood, have you! Very well, you can continue it;" and, as the young man was too proud to ask to be relieved, he actually drove the sledge and brought wood through the bitter winter till the ice gave way in May.
His chief recreations throughout this period were trapping silver-gray foxes during any chance leisure hour in the winter, and learning to play on the violin, his instructress being a half- breed woman. In 1824, being still in the employ of the Fur Company, he was transferred from Mackinac to Prairie du Chien. He had made a visit to his parents on attaining his majority, and had returned to Mackinac in a small boat, coasting the western shore of Lake Michigan. He was the first white man who set foot on shore at Wau-kee-gan—at least since the days of the explorers.
His chief recreations throughout this period were trapping silver-gray foxes during any chance leisure hour in the winter, and learning to play on the violin, his instructress being a half-breed woman. In 1824, being still in the employ of the Fur Company, he was transferred from Mackinaw to Prairie du Chien. He had made a visit to his parents on attaining his majority, and had returned to Mackinaw in a small boat, coasting the western shore of Lake Michigan. He was the first white man who set foot on shore at Wau-kee-gan—at least since the days of the explorers.
While at Prairie du Chien, Mr. Kinzie learned the Winnebago language, and compiled a grammar, as far as such a task was (25) practicable. The Ottawa, Pottawatomie, and Chippewa dialects, he had been familiar with from his childhood. He also learned the Sioux language, and, partially, that of the Sauks and Foxes.
About this time, Col. Kinzie received AN INVITATION FROM GEN. CASS, then Governor of the Territory of Michigan, to become his private secretary, and in 1826, he escorted a deputation of Winnebagoes to Washington to visit their Great Father, the President. He was at the Treaty of "Butte des Morts" in the summer of 1827, and accompanied the Commissioner, Col. McKenny, to the Portage of the Fox and Wisconsin Rivers, to be present at the surrender of the "Red-Bird," a Winnebago chief, who, with his comrades, had been concerned in the murder of the Garnier family at Prairie du Chien. Mr. Kinzie took a different view of the actual complicity of Red-Bird from what has been given to the public. His journal, kept at the time, is of great interest. He was called from his station, beside the military officer appointed to receive the prisoners, by Kau-ray-man-nee, the principal Chief of the nation, to stand beside him, and listen to what was said on both sides at this interview, and tell him whether his speech to the "Big Knives" and their reply to him were rightly interpreted.
During the time of his residence with Gen. Cass, who was by virtue of his appointment, also Superintendent of the Northern Division of the Indian Tribes, he was sent to the vicinity of Sandusky, to learn the language of the Wyandots, or Hurons, their manners and customs, legends, traditions, etc. Of this language he also compiled a grammar. The large amount of Indian lore which he collected in these various researches, were, of course, placed in the hands of his chief, Gen. Cass; and it is greatly to be regretted that, as far as can be ascertained, not a trace of it now remains extant.
MR. KINZIE RECEIVED THE APPOINTMENT OF AGENT for the upper bands of the Winnebagoes in 1829, and fixed his residence at the portage, where Fort Winnebago was in that year constructed. In 1830, he married, and continued to reside among his red children—to whom he was, and is still proclaimed by the oppressed few who remain, a kind, judicious, and watchful "father." In 1833, the Kinzie family having established their pre-emption to the quarter section upon which the family mansion had stood since 1804, Col. Kinzie (such was then his title as aid to the Commander-in-Chief, Gov. Cass,) came with his brother-in-law, Gen. Hunter, to Chicago, and together they laid out that part of the town since known as Kinzie's Addition.
(26) In 1834, he brought his family to Chicago to reside. He was the first President of the village, when a prediction of the present opulence and prosperity of the city would have seemed the wildest chimera.
He was appointed Collector of Tolls on the canal immediately on its completion.
In 1841, he was made Registrar of Public Lands by Gen. Harrison, but was removed by Tyler, when he laid aside the mask under which he gained the nomination for Vice-President.
In 1849, Gen. Taylor conferred upon him the appointment of Receiver of Public Moneys and Depositary.
His office of Collector he held until commissioned by President Lincoln as PAYMASTER IN THE ARMY IN 1861. The latter appointment he held until the close of the War. His labors were vast and wearying, for he had the supervision of Michigan, Wisconsin, and Illinois; yet he was too conscientious, in the state of the public finances, to apply for more aid. During the four years he discharged this large amount of duty with the assistance of but a solitary clerk. It was too much for him; his health gave way. When a tardy leave of absence arrived, he set out with his family upon a journey, in hopes that mountain air or sea-bathing would recruit his exhausted forces. But he was destined to reach hardly the first stage of his journey. While riding in the cars approaching Pittsburgh [June 19, 1865], and conversing with his ordinary cheerfulness, he remarked a blind man approaching, and, perceiving that he was asking alms, he characteristically put his hand in his pocket. In the act, his head drooped gently, and with a peaceful sigh, his spirit departed to its rest.30
Arnold, in his own sketch of John H. Kinzie, has perhaps best eulogized him:
He was ever faithful, honest, and upright, and, although his whole life was passed upon the frontier, he was, in morals and manners, the model of a Christian gentleman. A kinder and more benevolent heart never beat. Chicago may have lost citizens of higher positions, but no one more beloved and cherished, by all who knew him, than John H. Kinzie.31
The Kinzies’ Indian Agency House near Portage, Wisconsin, was one of the earliest houses built in Wisconsin, and still exists today.
|Four Legs, 1827||Four Legs’ Village on Doty Island, 1830|
"Four-Legs" — Hujopka, also known as "the Dandy" for his careful attention to his ostentatious dress. However, Morgan L. Martin in 1828 remarked, We found Four Legs a very ordinary looking Indian."32 His village, located on Doty Island in Lake Winnebago, was probably the largest village of the Hočąk nation, and described by Martin as being, "from 150 to 200 lodges, covered with bark or mats."33 McCall recalls that in 1830, "[We] took our dinner and returned to meet the chief at his lodge. Here we found them collected in all about 10 in number the head chief seated on his mat cross-legged in all the majesty of an Asiatic prince. After a profound silence, he arose from his seat and shook hands with each of us and addressed us in the Winnebago."34 He goes on to describe the festivities of the evening: "At night a band of the Winnebagoes appeared, painted all colors—not only their faces but their bodies—before the house where we boarded, encouraged by some and treated by others with whiskey. They held the war dance and kept it up until 10 o'clock at night, with all their disfigured and distorted countenances—naked except breech clouts. All with some kind of weapon and horrid yell, made them resemble so many infernals."35 Lyman C. Draper makes some interesting observations:
We learn from Schoolcraft's History of the Indian Tribes, III, 279, that the Winnebagoes evinced some insolence towards the Americans during the years immediately succeeding the war of 1812-15; that Hoo-Choop or Four Legs, a stern chief at the outlet of Winnebago Lake, assumed to be the keeper of the Fox River Valley, and levied tribute, in some cases, for the privilege of ascent. Col. T. L. McKenney thus alludes to this Winnebago custom of exacting tribute: "Four Legs, a fine looking chief, occupied, with his village, the tongue of land which runs out between Winnebago Lake, on the one side, and Fox River on the other. When Gen. Leavenworth, some years previous to 1827, was ascending the Fox River with troops, on his way to the Mississippi, on arriving at this pass, Four Legs came out, dressed in all his gewgaws and feathers, and painted after the most approved fashion, and announced to the General that he could not go through; "The Lake," said he, "is locked." "Tell him," said he General, rising in his batteaux, with a rifle in his hand, "that this is the key, and I shall unlock it and go on." The chief had a good deal of the better part of valor in his composition, and so he replied, "Very well, tell him he can go." Ne-o-kau-tah, or Four Legs, has his village at the outlet of Winnebago Lake. He served under the British during the war of 1812-'13, figuring at Fort Meigs, Sandusky, and on McKay's expedition to Prairie du Chien. He was an active and influential Winnebago Chief, and a very worthy man: but like most of the Red Race he dearly loved fire-water, and indulging too freely, he fell a victim to it in a drunken debauch at the Wisconsin Portage.36
The name Neokautah is Menominee for "Four Legs." See the remarks made by Thomas George on Four Legs.
|The Flowering Dogwood
|The Red Willow,
"kin-nee-kin-nick" — kinnikinnick is called ruǧíšučgé in Hočąk. Considering that ruǧí-šuč-gé also denotes the flowering dogwood (Cornus florida), we would have to conclude that its bark was at times also used to make kinnikinnick. On the other hand, ruǧí-šuč-gé also means, "red willow," so no fundamental distinction seems to have been made between these two trees. This "red willow" is not the Salix laevigata, since that tree is found only in the southwestern United States. Yet Ruǧí does mean "willow." However, what counts as a "willow" in Hočąk also includes the tamarack (Larix laricina), which is called ruǧiášarašáraké, "the ruǧí of the sort (-ge) whose bark (ha) is very easily removed (šara-šárak)." It happens that "Red willow" is also a common term for Cornus amomum, which is also called kinnikinnick by Algonquian tribes.37 Therefore, both of these Cornus species, together termed ruǧíšučgé, were used in the preparation of kinnikinnick.
|Prairie du Chien in 1830 by Henry Lewis|
"Prairie du Chien" — its French name means, "Prairie of the Dog," and denotes a plain about 9 miles north of the confluence of the Wisconsin and Mississippi Rivers. On an elevation near the Turkey River, the Fox tribe had a large village at the base of which the Dog Band resided. It is from this Dog Band that the whole prairie took its name. The site of the present town was "the principal trading post on the Mississippi; the depot of the fur traders; the ancient meeting-place of the Indians tribes."38 The area was gradually settled by French farmers, and once it fell under the sovereignty of the British Crown, many new British settlers as well. During the War of 1812,
The peculiar position which Prairie du Chien occupied in the Indian country at once pointed it out as a most important place — of the value of which both the hostile Powers were fully cognizant — from the fact that whichever army took possession of it could command that immense territory inhabited by the warlike tribes of the West ... which lay along the west frontier of the United States ...39
The expedition of Zebulon Pike passed through the area and he noted the strategic character of this site and recommended to the War Department that they build a fort there, which was done in 1816 with the erection of Ft. Crawford. It was the frequent site of Indian gatherings for treaties with the United States government, and by 1823, Prairie du Chien was a major steamboat port, although in just a couple of decades, it was eclipsed by Minneapolis.40
|The American Fur Co. in Fond du Lac by J. O. Lewis|
"the American Fur Company" — the story of this company is essentially that of its founder, John Jacob Astor, who at one time was the richest man in the world. He was born in Germany, and joined his brother in London to pursue their musical instrument business there, but set out in 1784 to seek his fortune in the newly independent United States. There he set up fur trading enterprises, operating out of Montreal and New York. By 1808, when his new American Fur Co. was chartered in New York City, he had already achieve considerable wealth. He had great difficulty competing against the British Companies operating out of Canada, but with the favorable peace terms that ended the War of 1812, his competitors were excluded by law from the newly opened frontier areas in the American west. He built America's first monopoly, and had the good sense to bail out of the company at a time, in the later 30's and early 40's, when Europe's passions for fur gave way to a new love for oriental silk. By the 1850's, the company had become extinct, but due to astute real estate investments, Aster himself became richer than he had ever been.41
"Shaw-nee-aw-kee" — this sounds like, Žaniąki (< Žu-haniąki), from žu, "money"; and haniąki, "he has, he brings, he takes." So it sounds in Hočąk like Col. Kinzie is being called, the "Money Bringer." The Kinzies, however, have translated this as "Silver Man." His daughter, Nellie Gordon stated, "The name was "Shaw-nee-au-kee," which means "The Silver Man;" a name given to him, I have frequently heard father say, because he paid the Indians in silver."42 In fact, the title belonged first to his father, John Kinzie, Sr., who began his career as an understudy to a silver smith in Quebec.43 Because of the elder Kinzie's ability to fashion artifacts out of this precious metal, the Potawatomies took to calling him "Silver Man," Šaniaki, a name that stuck with him as an American trader, no doubt because he himself used it as his "Indian name." Cf. Ojibwe zhooniyaa, "silver."
"Governor Cass" — Lewis Cass (1782 – 1866) was governor of Michigan territory from 1813-1831. He began his career in the Army, first as a Colonel of Ohio volunteers, then as an officer in the regular U. S. Army, where he rose to the rank of General. James Madison appointed him to be Governor of the Michigan Territory, a post he held for nearly two decades. His tenure saw a great land cession by the native tribes of the region. He left this post to become Secretary of War under President Jackson. He later became Minister to France, Senator from Michigan, Secretary of State (1857-1860), and ran unsuccessfully as the Democratic Party nominee for president against Zack Taylor. He was a long time prominent member of the Masons.44
|Lance Busse, Wisconsin Fishing Reports||Satellite Water Clarity Map|
|Garlic Island, July 1, 2013||The Northern Half of Lake Winnebago|
"Garlic Island" (1, 2), 44°5'19"N 88°28'54"W — this island in Lake Winnebago is often found on contemporary maps under the name "Island Park," but everyone still calls it "Garlic Island." About 20 years before the Kinzies passed by there, the island had a notoriety as the place where, in 1813, Colonel Dickson and his command of British regulars set up in the winter of that year to work with their Menominee allies. Supplies from Green Bay were not able to get through, and as a result, his command, as well as the local Menominees, nearly starved to death. However, supplies were able to reach him in the spring.45 This was the site of the village of Pesheu ("Wild Cat"), described by Publius Lawson:
The early name of the island and village, "Pe-Sheu's village," was derived from this source. For some years prior to 1813 and down to rather late times it also bore the name of Garlic island. Just when this village was established here cannot be exactly ascertained, yet it is highly probable that Pe-Sheu himself was its founder and that he and his tribesmen came from the principal Winnebago village on Doty's island.46
Judge Martin saw this village in 1828, and remarked,
Garlic Island was the next stopping place. There was a Winnebago village there of about the same size as that over which Four Legs (Doty Island) presided. (150 to 200 lodges covered with bark and mats). The lodges, however, were longer and neater. We purchased supplies of vegetables of the island villagers.47
"Wild Cat" — his Indian name is Pesheu, which is actually the Menominee Bizhiw, "Lynx." His village was situated on Garlic Island (see immediately above).48 Publius Lawson says of him, "Chief Wild Cat was a large and bulky savage with a hasty and ferocious temper which often got him into difficulties. We suppose that he was born at Doty's island at some time just previous to the American Revolution."49 He had been a long standing ally of the British, fighting for them in 1793 in the Ohio country, and receiving from them in 1797 a bronze metal bearing the likeness of King George III.50 Not long after the Black Hawk War, he was found dead, sitting with his back to a tree, in what is now Oshkosh.51
|The Warrior Wonder Wearing
Skunk Fur on his Leg
"the fur of a polecat on their legs" — The wearing of skunk fur leg bands is a particular war honor signifying that the man has kicked a slain enemy on the battlefield. Only if he does it twice may he wear such bands on both legs.52 Even though the skunk has no powerful odor in its fur, such negative associations could at least be a contributing factor in the choice of names.
"Ho-tshung-rahs" — Hočągara, from ho, "voice"; and čąk, "great": "Those of the Great Voice." For a full discussion of this name, see Introduction.
|The Indian Agency House at Ft. Winnebago||Ft. Winnebago by Juliette Kinzie|
"Fort Winnebago" — a fort built in 1828 in response to the Winnebago War of the previous year. It was situated at the Portage in order to control traffic that passed from the Lakes to the Mississippi River. The only military activity in which the fort was involved was the Black Hawk War of 1832. Given the pacification of the region after that war, the fort was decommissioned in 1845. Still extant is the Indian Agency House built as a residence for John and Juliette Kinzie in 1832. The painting of Ft. Winnebago, done in 1831, is by talented Juliette Kinzie herself.
"point of the hill" — it is likely that the theory behind burying such a chief at the summit of a hill is essentially like that of the platform burial: to bury the man "in the sky." The spirits of the Earth Moiety clans are often said to live in hills, as we see with Waterspirits generally, the Great Doe, and the Heroka, among others. This allows the hill to function as a Cosmic Mountain53* whose summit is appropriate as the resting place of such a member of the Thunderbird Clan.
"pow-wow" — in those times it usually meant a meeting of different tribes. The word entered American English quite early from the Narragansett pawwaw which denoted a spiritual leader (of the meeting).54 Today, powwows have evolved into major gatherings of tribes, often scheduled annually, to celebrate Native American culture.
|George Catlin's Illustration of a Winnebago Flute|
"the Indian flute" — George Catlin, the painter, says of this instrument:
There is yet another wind instrument which I have added to my Collection and from its appearance would seem to have been borrowed, in part, from the civilized world. This is what is often on the frontier called a 'deer-skin flute', a Winnebago courting flute, 'tsal-eet-quash-to'; it is perforated with holes for the fingers, sometimes for six, at others for four, and in some instances for three only, having only so many notes with their octaves. These notes are very irregularly graduated, showing clearly that they have very little-taste or ear for melody. These instruments are blown in the end, and the sound produced much on the principle of a whistle. In the vicinity of the Upper Mississippi, I often and familiarly heard this instrument, called the Winnebago courting flute; and was credibly informed by traders and others in those regions, that the young men of that tribe meet with signal success, oftentimes, in wooing their sweethearts with its simple notes, which they blow for hours together, and from day to day, from the bank of some stream -- some favorite rock or log on which they are seated, near to the wigwam which contains the object of their tender passion; until her soul is touched, and she responds by some welcome signal, that she is ready to repay the young Orpheus for his pains, with the gift of her hand and her heart. How true these representations may have been made, I cannot say, but there certainly must have been some ground for the present cognomen by which it is known in that country.55
|Madame Four Legs, 1827|
"Madame Four-Legs" — She was Fox, but she could speak Ojibwe, which allowed her to become an interpreter, since Ojibwe was the lingua franca among the tribes of the Upper Midwest.56 Before her trip to Washington in 1827, she had been to New York. This experience informed her of the very great numbers and power of the whites, and when Four Legs was urged to bring his band into the Winnebago War, she was able to dissuade her husband from adopting a reckless course.57
"Naw-kaw, or Kar-ray-mau-nee" — the latter name is for Keramąnįga, "Walking Turtle." This name is rendered in a bewildering variety of ways: Karimine, Karrymaunee, Carrymaunee, Cari-maunee, Carimimie, Caramaunee, Calimine, Carramana, Kay-rah-mau-nee, Kerry-man-nee, and Kariminee.58 He was also known as Nąga, "Wood" or "Tree." The name Nąga is his clan name (Thunderbird Clan), and refers to the Thunders' habit of striking trees with their lightning weapon. Powell has this to say about him,
There lived for many years a very aged Winnebago chief, called Caramaunee, at a little village composed of only three or four bark lodges belonging to himself and his sons-in-law, located about two miles east [south] of what is since called Waukau.59 East of Fox River, about two miles above Omro, is Delhi. Some two miles back east [south] of Delhi was Waukau, on the old Fort Winnebago trail from Green Bay to the Fox-Wisconsin portage. About two miles east [south] of Waukau, on the west [east] bank of [the outlet of] Rush or Mud Lake, near the centre of the stream, was Caramaunee's village. He was a. large, square-shouldered, stout man, not very tall, but with a powerful frame and long face. While his people were generally regarded as unreliable and thievish, Caramaunee bore a most excellent character, was liked by all traders, and was friendly to the whites. "When I saw him last, about 1830, he seemed nearly a hundred years of age. He said he was out with Colonel Dickson in the War of 1812, went with the Menominee to Sandusky, and was at Mackinac when Major Holmes was shot by L'Espagnol."60
Grignon referred to him as "a very worthy man."61 He fought with Tecumseh and was at his side when he was killed in 1813.62 Keramąnįga was the father-in-law of Spoon Decorah, the first cousin once removed of Wakąhaga. During the year in which these events took place (1828), Keramąnįga moved his people to a site on the Baraboo River, where became known as "the Counselor of the Baraboo."63 He died in Dexterville, Iowa.64 See also, McKenney-Hall.
|Black Wolf, 1827||The Southern Half of Lake Winnebago Showing Black Wolf Point|
"Black-Wolf" — Šųkjągesépka in Hočąk. His village was located seven miles south of Oshkosh on the shore of Lake Winnebago,65 still remembered in "Black Wolf Point" (43°55'39.0"N 88°28'17.0"W) and the town of Black Wolf. The village had only about 40 lodges. Hočąk campfires were seen there as late as 1846. Black Wolf was a large man and rose to the rank of War Chief. He fought on the side of the British and was at Mackinac and Prairie du Chien in the War of 1812.66 He was one of four chiefs, accompanied by 40 warriors who appeared in the peace negotiations between the British and Americans at Mackinac on June 3, 1815.67 He is believed to have died at Portage in 1847.
"Major Forsyth" — Major Robert Allen Forsyth, jr., was sub-agent to the Winnebago under Col. John Kinsie. He transported the Hočąk delegation to Washington to sign the Treaties of 1829 and 1832.
Forsyth, Robert Allen (1798-Oct. 21, 1849) born in Detroit, son of Maj. Thomas Forsyth and his Ojibwa wife; early citizen of Chicago; served in the War of 1812; was a cadet in 1814 and later served as secretary to Governor Cass (in that capacity, accompanied him on the exploratory expedition that passed through Chicago in August 1820); received $1250 in payment for a claim at the 1828 Indian Treaty; was present at the Treaty of Chicago of 1833, serving on the claims committee and signing the treaty as a witness; received $3000 in payment to himself for a claim at the Chicago Treaty, $300 in trust for Mau-se-on-o-quet, $1000 in trust for Catherine McKenzie, and $200 in trust for heirs of Charles Guion; married Maria Howard [c.1799, Hinsdale, MA] on Nov. 6, 1826 at Genesco, NY; the couple had five surviving children born at Detroit; he died in Detroit; Maria died there on Oct. 4, 1890. He is sometimes cited as Chicago's very first schoolteacher: at the age of 13, during a winter visit in 1810, he taught the alphabet to six-year-old John H. Kinzie, tutoring with a speller brought from Detroit.68
The inset is purported to be of this Robert Allen Forsyth, but this has not been confirmed. Maj. Forsyth has a close relationship to John Kinzie, as can be seen in this genealogical tree:
The Forsyth-Kinzie Genealogy
"Hoo-wau-ne-kah, the Little Elk" — Hųwąnįka in Hočąk. His portrait, painted during his trip to Washington, is seen above. Of interest are the wounds painted on the right side of his body. He appears to have been struck by an arrow right on top of his rib, which if it had been off this mark by an inch, would have passed between his ribs and into his vital organs. He also has two slash marks on his right arm, probably the result of more close order combat. See also, McKenney-Hall.
"White Crow" — Kau-ray-kaw-saw-kaw would seem to correspond to Karekasaga, which is unattested and is probably a corrupted form of the name. His name given elsewhere as Kau-kish-ka-ka69 better approximates the expected Kaǧískága, which means "White Crow." He was nicknamed "The Blind," or Le Borgne since he had lost an eye.70 He was chief of a village by Lake Koshkonong of about 1200 people who lived in white cedar bark lodges.71 He was the father of "the Washington Woman," who married Yellow Thunder.72 At the beginning of the Sauk War he believed that the Sauks would vanquish the whites and tried to warn them.
The White Crow had told Capt. Beon Gratiot, that he was friendly towards him as his brother was the Winnebago Indian Agent; that he did not wish to see him killed, and that he had better leave Col. Dodge and go home; that the Sauks and Foxes would kill all the whites; that the whites could not fight, as they were a soft-shelled breed; that when the spear was put to them they would quack like ducks, as the whites had done at Stillman's Defeat; and he proceeded to mimic out, in full Indian style, the spearing and scalping in the Stillman affair; and that all the whites who persisted in marching against the Indians, might expect to be served in the same manner.73
He died in 1836 and is buried near the village of Cross Plains.74
"Pawnee Blanc" — Paniwasąga, the son of White Crow, also known as "Vane Blanc." It was said that he had "fought bravely and openly beside Pierre Poquette at the battle of Wisconsin Heights."75 Pawnee Blanc, "a notable chief," was murdered by an early settler of the Baraboo region named "Abraham Wood," probably in the spring of 1839.76 Wood ran a "grog shop," and Pawnee Blanc, unable to purchase any liquor, attempted to gain some at knife point, whereupon Wood struck him in the head with a stick, killing him. He narrowly escaped lynching by the Indians gathered outside. In Green Bay, however, no indictment was returned against him.77
|Nunn & Clark Piano, 1834|
"Nunns and Clark" — William Nunns and his brother Robert emigrated to New York from London in 1821. After a couple of years working in the piano industry, they established their own business in 1823, with a factory on Long Island and a display room on Broadway. Juliette Kinzie's account is a bit anachronistic, as the firm only became known as "Nunns & Clark" three years after John Clark's arrival in New York in 1830. The company initially had a good reputation for innovation and quality, but eventually lost out to companies like Steinway.78
"General Street" — General Joseph Montfort Street (October 18, 1782 – May 5, 1840), was a frontiersman in the old Northwest Territory, and a friend of Henry Clay, Andrew Jackson, and Zachary Taylor. After a stormy career as a newspaper owner in Kentucky, he established himself in Shawneetown, Illinois, in 1812. He was made general of the local militia. In 1827 he became the Indian agent to the Hočągara. He attempted to keep white settlers out of the lands reserved for the tribe, but it proved a hopeless task, so he came to believe that Indian removal was the only answer. In 1832, he was able to keep most of the Hočągara neutral in the Black Hawk War. In 1834, the Fox and Sauk were added as his charges. This diffusion of his labors caused the abortion of his school for the Hočągara at Prairie du Chien, which closed the year that he died.79
"a quantity of silver out of the box" — The word for the number one-thousand, kógižą́ (Miner) < kók hižą́ (Helmbrecht-Lehmann), was first recorded in the XIXᵀᴴ century by Rev. James O. Dorsey (kókižą). Its literal meaning is, "a box," which derives from the practice of dispensing treaty payments from a box containing a thousand dollars in silver coin.
"negus" — Raspberry negus, we should expect, adhered to this recipe, except for replacing the lemons with berries: 2 oz. of lump sugar, 2 lemons, 1 bottle of port, 1 pint of boiling water, and grated nutmeg. "Rub the lumps of sugar on the rinds of the lemons until yellow. Put into a large warm bowl, adding the strained juice of the lemons [or raspberries, etc.]. Pour in the port and add the boiling water when ready to serve, with grated nutmeg atop. Add more sugar to taste."80
Here it is mentioned, though not by name, in one of the works of Dickens:
[Mr. Stiggins] recommended a bottle of port-wine, warmed with a little water, spice, and sugar, as being grateful to the stomach, and savoring less of vanity than many other compounds. It was accordingly ordered to be prepared.81
It was also referred to as "Port Negus."
|Yellow Thunder Late in Life||Yellow Thunder's 40, 1859|
"Wau-kaun-zee-kah, the Yellow Thunder" — the proper form of the name is Wakąjaziga, "Yellow Thunderbird," although the shortened name stuck in English. It is a Thunderbird Clan name. Moses Pauquette adds, "He was a fine looking Indian, tall, straight, and stately, but had an over weening love for fire-water, — his only vice.."82 Jipson gives a sketch of him:
This chieftain ... lived on the Fox River about five miles below Berlin at the Yellow Banks. He was said to have been a man of great responsibility among his people and an able counselor to all their public affairs. In company with his wife, who was a daughter of White Crow, and later called the 'Washington Woman,' he made a visit with several numbers of his tribe to New York and Washington in 1828. He signed the treaty of 1829. In 1837, in company with several young men, he was persuaded to visit Washington and induced to sign the treaty made in that year. But he found that the terms of the treaty compelled him to go west of the Mississippi, he declared he would not go. But in 1840, in company with Black Wolf, he was invited into Fort Winnebago ostensibly to hold a council. When the gates were shut on them they were seized and conveyed beyond the Mississippi.
But Yellow Thunder soon returned, and visiting the land office at Mineral Point, he asked if Indians would be permitted to enter land. In receiving an affirmative answer, he entered forty acres on the west bank of the Wisconsin River. He is said to have built two log huts, and to have cultivated five acres of this land, raising corn, beans and potatoes. During his feasts about 1500 Indians usually gathered in his vicinity. In 1840, he was said to have had a summer village sixteen miles up the river from Portage.
He sold his land before his death which occurred in 1874. It is said that when he paid his taxes he placed in his pouch a kernel of corn for every dollar paid, and when he sold his land he demanded a dollar for every kernel. As he had been a devout Catholic his funeral services were conducted according to the rites of that church. He was buried near his homestead and near the grave of the Washington Woman and several other members of his family.83
Yellow Thunder's forty acres has been precisely located in the SW ¼ of the SE ¼ of Section 36 of Delton Township (T 13N, R 06E) in Sauk County.84 The center of this property is located at 43.555933, -89.725647. After his death, it was purchased by John Bennett, whose land is shown in Section 36 of the 1909 plat map of Delton Township.
|The Yellow Thunder and Washington Woman Monument|
"the Washington woman" — the wife of Yellow Thunder, and the daughter of White Crow. She was buried on a sandy knoll outside Delton, but in 1909, her body, and that of her husband, were disinterred and reburied by the Sauk County Historical Society under a monument about 5 miles north of Baraboo.85 This monument, located at 43.538273, -89.718491 (NW ¼ of NW ¼ of Section 7, Westford Township, Richland County), which is only 1.2 miles south of the Yellow Thunder property.86
" humph" — this is probably hąhą́ (Hočąk has no /f/ phoneme), which means, "yes, alright, well and good, now then," and is generally an exclamation of approval. The word "shilling" is pronounced šinin or širin in Hočąk, since that language has no /l/.
"Tah-nee-zhoo-rah" — this is tanį́žura. In pre-contact times, the Hočągara knew of honey ("bee tanį́žu") and maple syrup ("tree tanį́žu").
|Vice President Richard M. Johnson|
"Colonel Richard M. Johnson (1780-1850)" — served under William Henry Harrison in Upper Canada during the War of 1812, where he commanded a force of Kentucky volunteers. It was rumored that it was he who had killed Tecumseh at the Battle of the Thames. He was an able politician, and got himself appointed to the Senate from Kentucky. His common law wife was a slave who was 1/8 black. He gave his two daughters his surname, thus recognizing his marriage as legitimate, a fact which caused some scandal in his native state. Nevertheless, in 1836 his was chosen as Martin Van Buren's running mate. A humorous ditty arose which favored his chances: ""Rumpsey Dumpsey, Rumpsey Dumpsey, Colonel Johnson killed Tecumseh." However, in the Electoral College, the Virginia delegation refused to vote for him, and the issue was thrown into the Senate, where he became the first and only Vice President ever elected by the terms of the Twelfth Amendment. He proved to be such a liability that Van Buren was forced to run without a running mate in the 1840 election, which he lost to William Henry Harrison.87
"Paquette" — his name is variously rendered as "Pauquette, Poquette, Boquette." Satterlee Clark in his memoir of this period, has an interesting account of Pierre Pauquette (1796-1836):
(2) I now come to that part of my recollections in which the people of Portage and the Fort Winnebago region, feel the greatest interest, and have the most curiosity. I allude to my acquaintance with Peter Pauquette. His strength was so immeasurable, and his exploits so astonishing, that while relating what I have seen I shall tell only the exact truth, I will promise not to be offended if some of my readers should be a little skeptical. Peter Pauquette was born in the year 1800 of a French father and a Winnebago mother; the latter was buried nearly in front of the old agency house opposite the fort. He was thirty years old when I first knew him, and was the very best specimen of a man I ever saw. He was six feet two inches in height, and weighed two hundred and forty pounds — hardly ever varying a single pound. He was a very handsome man, hospitable, generous and kind, and I think I never saw a better natured man. I had heard much of his strength before I left Green Bay, and of course, was anxious to see him perform some of the wonderful feats of strength of which I had heard. From my first acquaintance with him to the day of his death, I was his most intimate friend, and consequently had a better opportunity to know him than any other person. I will now endeavor to give an idea of his strength and activity, which to me seemed almost superhuman. He often told me that all persons seemed alike to him. When I was nineteen or twenty years old, my business kept me constantly in training, and though I weighed less than one hundred and fifty pounds, my muscles were like iron; notwithstanding he often said it was no more trouble to take me across his lap than a child one year old, and so it seemed to me. I was told that on one occasion when he was making the portage with a heavy boat, one of his oxen gave out, and he took the yoke off, and carried the end against an ox all the way over. I did not see this, but I asked him if it was so, and he replied it was. I once saw him take hold of the staple to a pile driver weighing 2,650 lbs., and lift it apparently without any exertion, and swing it back and forth a minute of time. I have several times seen him get under a common sized horse, put his arms round the hind legs, his back under the horse's stomach and lift the horse clean off the ground. A great many other things I have seen him do which would tire the reader's patience were I to relate them. It can readily be imagined, however, that scarcely anything could be impossible to such a man. He was employed by the American Fur Company up to the day of his death. For the last four years of his life he had a bookkeeper, but previous to that time (not being able to read or write), he gave credit to hundreds of Indians, relying entirely on his memory, and their honesty. ...
(3) [On the 18ᵀᴴ day of October, 1836,] Pauquette came to my store to rejoice over our victory [in frustrating Gov. Cass in buying the lands of the Winnebago]. On this occasion he drank too much wine, and became just enough intoxicated to be impatient of contradiction. In this condition he started home on foot, and when within about one quarter of a mile of the ferry, opposite his house, he found an Indian and his wife sitting by a little fire in the bushes. The Indian was Mahzahmahneekah [Mą́zamąnį́ga], or Iron Walker, who was also drunk. What there occurred, is only known as related by the squaw that night. She said Pauquette kicked the fire apart, the Indian arose up and said something that offended Pauquette, who slapped the Indian's face, knocking him down. The Indian (319) got up, saying, "You knocked me down; but I got up. I will knock you down, and you will never get up. I will go for my gun." Pauquette only laughed, and sat down. The Indian returned, when Pauquette stood up, pulled open his coat, placed his hand on his breast and said, "Strike and see a brave man dies." The Indian fired, killing him instantly, the ball severing one of the main arteries leading from the heart. No man in Wisconsin could have died who was so much regretted. His death can safely be attributed to intoxication, though it was the first time I ever knew or heard of his being in that condition.88
For other references to Pauquette, see 1, 2, 3, 4, 5.
|Decorah and His Family, 1830|
"Day-kau-ray" — called "Old Decorah," he was the grandson of a French Officer and fur trader, Sebrevoir de Carrie, and his Hočąk wife, Glory of the Morning (Hąboguwįga). His father was Čugiga, "Spoon," the first of several known as "Spoon Decorah." As the first born son of Čugiga, he had the birth order name Kunúga, sometimes misinterpreted as meaning "Old." His Thunderbird Clan name, given to him as a child, was Čaxšépsgaga, "White Eagle." He was born ca. 1747, and in time replaced his father as head chief.89 In his younger days, he fought in the War of 1812 on the British side during the attack on Ft. Stephenson (August 2, 1813), and at the Battle of the Thames (October 5, 1813), where Tecumseh was killed. He had the largest village in the Hočąk nation with approximately 100 lodges at Baraboo. Of his nobility there are many testimonials. At the conclusion of the Winnebago War, Old Decorah submitted himself as a hostage on the understanding that if the perpetrators of various crimes were not surrendered to the government, then he was to be shot. Being in imperfect health, he asked Col. Snelling if he might not take the local waters for his health. The Colonel agreed on the solemn pledge that he would return to captivity at the end of each day. He replied that if he had a hundred lives, he would sooner lose them all than forfeit his word, or deduct from his proud nation one particle of its boasted honor. Some at the fort advised him to take this chance to escape, but he responded, "Do you think I prize life above honor?"He faithfully abided by his oath until the fateful day of his appoint execution arrived. When no one was surrendered, he remained as calm as ever, and by the good fortune of Gen. Atkinson's arrival, he was spared execution by the General's pardon.90 He died at Peten Well on April 20, 1836.
|The Peace Pipe Given to Zach Taylor by Old Decorah|
"Wys-kap-rah tshoonsh-koo-nee-noh!" — this is, Waisgábᵋra čųšgų́nįno, the terminal /o/ being the sound resulting from drawing out the phoneme /ą/. It translates as, "the bread is depleted."
|Ft. Dearborn is to the Left,
the House with the Four Poplars on the Right is the Kinzie Home, 1831
|"Pioneers," Depicting John Kinzie
Leading a Group through the Wilderness
"the Elder Kinzie" — John H. Kinzie, Sr. (December 3, 1763 - January 6, 1828) was the father of the John Kinzie married to the author of Wau-Bun. His father, John McKenzie, was a surgeon in the 60ᵀᴴ Royal American Regiment of Foot. He married Anne, the widow of William Haleyburton, a chaplain with another American Foot regiment. While they lived in Quebec City, the "Mc" was dropped from the surname, and their first born was christened "John Kinzie." Shortly after his birth, the father died, and Anne married a William Forsyth of New York City. John and his half-brothers attended a school in Long Island, but one day John, who was only 10 years old, suddenly disappeared. Many thought him dead, but in fact he had run away, headed back to Quebec City. There he was able to get a job working for a silver smith. A couple of years later, a man from New York chanced upon him and recognized who he was. He sent word to William Forsyth, who came to Canada and picked him up. Thereafter, John Kinzie remained at his home in New York. Mr. Forsyth and the family eventually moved to the far west, which then was Detroit. Before he had reached majority, John became infatuated with the career in the Indian trade, and his step-father outfitted him to establish trading post even further west. In these posts, he put to good use his knowledge of silver smithing, and was able to fashion many necklaces and gorgets from the silver tokens given to the Indians in the west by the U. S. government. The Indians soon began to call him Shaw-nee-aw-kee, "Silver-man." He soon established a good reputation among the Indians as being an honest man who would never cheat them. Living with his half-brother's wife was her sister, Eleanor nee Lytle, who was the widow of a British officer who had been KIA outside Ft. Defiance. They married on January 23, 1798. In his expanding business, John Kinzie was greatly aided by John Harris, a close friend of George Washington's. When his son was born in 1803, he called him "John Harris Kinzie." In October of that year, he moved his family to the Chicago settlement, buying a place across the river from Ft. Dearborn from a French Canadian named "Le Mai." He expanded his business ever westward, and was appointed by the government to be Sub-Indian Agent and Government Interpreter. In 1810, a well-known French trader, Lalime, who was competing with Kinzie, made it known that he would kill him if he could find the opportunity, so Kinzie armed himself with a knife. One day at Ft. Dearborn, he was ambushed by Lalime who stabbed him very near his jugular vein, but Kinzie's counter-thrust killed Lalime outright. John Kinzie was later acquitted on the grounds of self-defence. After the massacre at Ft. Dearborn, Kinzie returned to Detroit, which was then under British control. General Proctor, who was headquartered there, suspected Kinzie of secret communications with General William Henry Harrison, and twice attempted to arrest him, but his Indian allies insisted on his release. In a third arrest, he was put in irons, and was to be shipped to England, but exceptional circumstances intervened, and made it impossible to effect. Eventually, Kinzie was released from prison in Quebec, and returned to Detroit, which was liberated by General Harrison not long afterwards. The General was put up in Kinzie's own home. In 1816 he returned to Chicago and the Fort was rebuilt. His land holdings in Chicago eventually mitigated the loss of his business during the war, as his staff and trade goods had been scattered to the four corners during the war. He died of a stroke on January 6, 1828.91
|Ft. Dearborn||Capt. John Whistler||Blockhouse Two at Ft. Dearborn||Ft. Dearborn|
"Fort Dearborn" — Built in 1803 on the Chicago River in what is not the city of Chicago, and named after the Revolutionary War General Henry Dearborn, who was at this time, the Secretary of War for Thomas Jefferson. In 1810, Nathan Heald succeeded to the command of the fort, succeeding Capt. John Whistler (the grandfather of the famous artist). After its destruction in 1812, a new for was erected on the same site in 1816. When this frontier area was pacified, the garrison was withdrawn, and the fort itself was finally decommissioned in 1836. The erection of the fort established the first real American presence in what is now Chicago, which had prior to then been an ancient Indian town, known to the French as early as 1686, where it appears on a map as Chekagou.92
"Captain Heald" — Captain Nathan Heald (1775-1832) was the commanding officer at Ft. Dearborn, having relieved Capt. John Whistler in 1810. When war broke out in 1812, he received orders from General Hull to evacuate Ft. Dearborn. Heald arranged for a Potawatomi escort in his withdrawal to Ft. Wayne, but this scheme was vigorously opposed by all the officers of his command, who understood that the Indians were of a hostile inclination, despite the gifts which Heald has recently disbursed among them. However, the ill circumstances were somewhat mitigated by the arrival of Capt. Wells and about 30 friendly Miami Indians sent to aid them. Capt. Wells was Mrs. Heald's uncle. Unfortunately, most of the store of ammunition and all of the liquor had been destroyed, leaving the Indians resentful and the command under supplied. On August 15, 1812, they started off with the promised Potawatomi escort shadowing them on flank at a distance. Once the fort was abandoned, the Indians rushed in a plundered what could be found, and killed all the cattle left behind. After going not too great a distance, it was recognized that the Potawatomi escort had disappeared. Capt. Wells at some point, realized that the command was surrounded, and order the men to form up and assault the ambush, which they did effectively. However, the Miami escort fled, and the hostile Indians soon enveloped their flanks. Before long, the command was cut to pieces. Capt. Wells was killed, and Capt. Heald wounded in his hip. He and his men set up a position for a last stand, when the Indians advanced instead to parlay. They promised to spare the lives of the survivors in exchange for surrender. Since he was faced with certain annihilation, Capt. Heald decided this was the only course open to him. Nevertheless, the wounded were tomahawked, and five of the soldiers were tortured to death. Mrs. Heald, who was wounded and about to be killed by her Indian captor, happened to be near the site where the Kinzie family was fleeing in a boat. Mrs. Kinzie had one of the Métis ransom Mrs. Heald for a mule and a promise of whiskey in the future. During their captivity, Capt. and Mrs. Heald came to the attention of a friendly Indian, who effected their transfer to the British at Mackinac. There the Captain was paroled, and at the first opportunity, they made their way to Louisville, where their appearance was a shock, since it had been assumed that they were both dead.93
"Lieutenant Helm" — Linai T. Helm was the son-in-law of the older John Kinzie, having married Margaret, his wife's eldest daughter (see the Forsyth-Kinzie Genealogy). During the Ft. Dearborn massacre, he had been wounded, as was his wife. She was reunited with her mother at the Kinzie house. Her husband, who had been separated from her, was taken by friendly Indians to Peoria, where Thomas Forsyth, the half-brother of Mr. Kinzie was the Indian agent. Forsyth was able to ransom him, and he later rejoined his wife in Detroit.94 Lt. Helm (later, Captain) died at Bath, New York ca. 1817.95
|"Defence," Depicting Ensign Ronan
at the Ft. Dearborn Massacre
"Ensign Ronan" — Ensign George Ronan, was said by Dr. Voorhees to be an "unbeliever." He was a recent graduate of West Point, an ensign at that time being the equivalent of a Second Lieutenant. In the Ft. Dearborn massacre, he fought with great bravery. After being mortally wounded, he fought on from his knees until he himself was finished off.96 He thereby became the first man of the West Point Corps of Cadets to be killed in action.97
"Dr. Van Voorhees" — Dr. Isaac V. Van Vorhees, surgeon, a native of Fishkill, New York. He was only 22 years of age when he was caught up in the Ft. Dearborn massacre. He expressed his terror to Mrs. Helm, who was herself only 17 years old. Not long after, he was tomahawked.98 The obituary of the Newburg, New York, newspaper read, "Among the slain was Dr. Isaac Van Voorhis, of Fishkill, surgeon in the army. He was a young man of great merit, and received his early education at the academy in this village. He possessed an enterprising and cultivated mind, and was ardent in the support to the interest and honor of his country."99
"Tippecanoe" — a battle fought in November of 1811 in which General William Henry Harrison, then Governor of Indiana Territory, severely defeated an Indian alliance under Tecumseh's brother, "the Prophet" (Tenskwatawa). For more on this battle, and the Hočąk take on it, see, The Shawnee Prophet — What He Told the Hočągara, and Tecumseh's Bulletproof Skin.
|Rebekah Wells Heald|
"Mrs. Heald" — Rebekah Wells (ca.1787-Apr. 23, 1857), the wife of Capt. Nathan Heald, was the daughter of Capt. Samuel Wells of Kentucky. Capt. Wells, who was killed at the Ft. Dearborn massacre, was her uncle. She herself was very seriously wounded at this affair, but recovered and was able to rejoin her husband in Detroit. Her account of the massacre forms one of the primary sources of its history. "She was fond of telling the story of her life, and her children and her friends were never tired of listening to it. [Her son thinks he has heard her tell it a hundred times.] She would begin away back in her girlhood, spent in the country about Louisville, Kentucky, when her father, Colonel Samuel Wells, was living there."100
|The Game of Battledoor and Shuttlecock|
"battledoor" — an ancient precursor to badminton which was played without a net, and whose object was to sustain as volley for as long as possible.101
"Nau-non-gee" — it is the end of Nan-non-qui or Mau-non-gei, as he was also called, that attracts the attention of historians, as we see in Publius Lawson's account:
Nau-non-gee was chief of the Calumet village of Potawatomi. Early in the massacre he shot Sergeant Hays, a friend of his. Hays ran the Indian through with the bayonet. Before the Indian died he called his band and enjoined them to be kind to their prisoners, as he deserved his fate for doing ill to a good friend.102
|Lee's Place at Hardscrabble|
"Lee's Place" — Charles Lee moved to the area in 1804 with his family, and the land, perhaps not the best possible, was named "Hardscrabble." This is the site now occupied by the city of Bridgeport, Illinois. He built his family residence, perhaps for reasons of prudence, near Ft. Dearborn, where he had the senior Kinsie as a neighbor. His Hardscrabble cabin was occupied by his employees, chiefly Liberty White (see immediately below).103 Lee himself was killed in the Ft. Dearborn massacre along with his eldest son, although his wife and baby survived.104
"Mr. White" — this was Liberty White who lived at Lee's settlement at Hardscrabble. Born in 1777 in Freetown, Massachusetts, he was killed on April 6, 1812 in the incident described by Juliette Kinzie above.105 He was scalped and his body mutilated.106
|Red Bird and Wiga||Red Bird Monument, Portage, Wisconsin|
"Red Bird" — Wanįgᵋsučka, in Hočąk. The government had adopted the practice of granting settlers permits to encroach on land reserved by treaty to the Hočąk Nation, and this coupled with the depredations of the lead miners, had caused the gradual intensification of resentment within the tribe. A false rumor spread that two Hočągara warriors had been executed by the government. This set into motion retaliation by Red Bird's band, who took revenge on June 28, 1827, by attacking a settler's family. Two days later, a firefight erupted with a keelboat in which two of its crew were killed. When the Army was mobilized, it became obvious that great destruction would be unleashed against the tribe, so Red Bird, and a companion named Weka (for Wiga, "Sun"), decided to surrender themselves to the capital punishment that was sure to be meted out by the white authorities in order to save the nation. McKenney, who was an eye-witness, tells what happened next:
All eyes were fixed upon the Red bird; and well they might be; for, of all Indians I ever saw, he is decidedly the most perfect in form, and face, and motion. In height he is about six feet, straight, but without restraint; in proportion, exact and perfect from his feet to his head, and then to the very ends of his fingers; whiles his face is full of expression, and of every sort to interest the feelings, and without a single, even accidental glance, that would justify the suspicion that a purpose of murder could by any possible means, conceal itself there. There is in it a happy blending of dignity and grace; great firmness and decision, mixed with mildness and mercy. ... He sat down, with a grace not less captivating than he walked and stood. At this moment, the band on our right struck up and played Pleyel's Hymn. ... [After speeches by both sides,] the Red Bird stood up; the commanding officer, Major Whistler, a few paces in advance of the centre of his line, facing him. After a pause of a minute, and a rapid survey of the troops, and a firm, composed observation of his people, the Red Bird said — looking at Major Whistler — "I am ready." Then advancing a step or two, he paused, and added — "I do not wish to be put in irons. Let me be free. I have given my life ‚ it is gone, (stooping down and taking some dust between his finger and thumb, and blowing it away,) like this — (eyeing the dust as it fell and vanished out of his sight.) I would not have it back. It is gone." He then threw his hands behind him, to indicate that he was leaving all things behind him, and marched up to Major Whistler, breast to breast. A platoon was wheeled backwards from the center of the line, when, Major Whistler stepping aside, the Red Bird and We-kaw marched through the line,in charge of a file of men, to a tent that had been provided in the rear, over which a guard was set.107
Captivity proved too much for Red Bird, who committed suicide on Feb. 16, 1828, a couple of months before President Adams issued a pardon to all those involved in the affair.
|Billy Caldwell (Sauganash)|
"Billy Caldwell" — a chief among the Potawatomi, and later chief of the United Potawatomies, Ottawas, and Chippewas. His Potawatomi name was Sauganash (Zhaaganaash), which meant "English" (cf. Hočąk, Zaganąš), since he was the son of a British officer and his Ojibwe wife. He rose to the rank of captain, not in the regular British Army, but in their allied auxiliary service, the Indian Department. Shaubena wrote of how he saved the Kinzies who were trapped inside their home and were under threat of death by the Potawatomies during the massacre at Ft. Dearborn in 1812:
The parlor was now full of Indians, who stood with their tomahawks and scalping knives, awaiting the signal from their chief, when they would commence the work of death. Black Partridge said to Mrs. Kinzie, "We have done everything in our power to save you, but all is now lost: you, and your friends, together with all the prisoners at the camp, will be slain." At that moment a canoe was heard approaching the shore, when Black Partridge ran down to the river, trying in the darkness to make out the newcomers, and at the same time shouted, "Who are you friend or foe?" In the bow of the approaching canoe, stood a tall, manly personage, with a rifle in his hand; and as the canoe came to shore, he jumped off on the beach, exclaiming, in a loud clear voice, the musical notes of which rang forth on the still night air: "I am the Sau-ga-nash!" "Then," said Black Partridge, "hasten to the house, for our friends are in danger, and you along can save them." Billy Caldwell, for it was he, ran to the house, entering the parlor, which was full of hostile Indians, and by threats, and entreaties, prevailed on them to abandon their murderous designs; and by him Kinzie's family, with the prisoners at the fort, were saved from death."108
The whites generally treated him as one of their own, and elected him to the post of Justice of the Peace for Peoria County, Illinois in 1826. In the treaty of 1829 at Prairie du Chien, he was able to secure for himself a tract of land now within Chicago. In 1830 he was the interpreter of the Agency known as "Cobweb Castle" in Chicago. In the treaty of 1832, he obtained an annual income of $600. Under his leadership, his united tribes resisted the appeal of the Sauks to join them in the Blackhawk War. In November of 1834 he married a Pottawatomie woman. He died on September 28, 1841 at Council Bluffs.109
"Robinson" — Alexander Robinson (or Chechepinquay, meaning "The Squinter"), was a chief among the Potawatomies, having been appointed thus by the U. S. government. He was the offspring of a Scottish trader and his Ottawa wife who were living in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan. He came to Chicago in 1815, and knew the Kinzies well. He is best known for having effected the escape of Kinzie, and other principles connected with the massacre at Ft. Dearborn, to relative safety in British territory. He was, with Billy Caldwell, an important leader in concluding the treaties of Chicago and Prairie du Chien. Like Caldwell, he was given an annuity and lands in Illinois, where he and other Métis remained after the Potawatomies were compelled to move west.110
|Shaubena in Indian Dress||Shaubena as Chief||Shaubena, ca. 1856|
"Shaw-bee-nay" — Nehemiah Matson, who was well acquainted with Shaubena, gives this sketch of him:
Shaubena said that he was of the Ottawa tribe, but in his youth he married the daughter of a noted Pottawatamie chief, whom he succeeded at his death, which occurred a few years afterwards, as one of the principal chiefs of the tribe. In 1811 he accompanied Tecumseh in his mission to the Creek Indians, in Mississippi, and was with him at the council of Vincennes. At the time of the British war, in 1812, he was made a war chief, was an aid to Tecumseh, and stood by his side when he fell at the battle of the Thames. Shaubena was a fine looking Indian, tall and straight, with broad shoulders, a large head, and a stranger could see by his general appearance that he was no ordinary personage. He spoke the English language very imperfectly, and was not celebrated as a great orator in his native tongue, but his superior knowledge of men and things, gave him great influence over his people. After the death of Senachwine and Black Partridge, no chief between the lake and Mississippi exercised so much influence over the Indians, as Shanbena. His home was at Shanbena Grove, now DeKalb county; but for thirty years he had made Bureau his hunting ground, and was well known by many of the early settlers. Shanbena had two wives, one of whom was the partner of his youth, and by her he had many grown up children. ... Shaubena, with his warriors, joined Atkinson's army, and participated in all the battles during the [Blackhawk] war. In the fall of 1836, he and his band abandoned their reservations of land at the grove, giving way to the tide of emigration, and went west of the Mississippi. But Shaubena's fidelity to the whites, caused him to be persecuted by the Sacs and Foxes. In revenge, they killed his son and nephew, and hunted him down like a wild beast. Two years after going west, in order to save his life, he left his people, and with a part of his family returned to this county. For some years he traveled from place to place, visiting a number of eastern cities, where he was much lionized, and received many valuable presents. ... Shaubena died in July, 1859, on the bank of the Illinois river, near Seneca, in the eighty-fourth year of his age.111
|Tošąnągᵋxųnųnįka, "Little Otter," 1827|
"To-shun-nuck" [Tošą́nąk] — this is short for Tošąnągᵋxųnųnįka, "Little Otter," where the word xųnųnįk can mean either "little" or "younger." This is a Waterspirit Clan name. In the 1832 treaty, he is said to be the son of Sweet Corn. He also signed the treaty of 1837.112
|Mazzuchelli as a Student in Rome, 1825|
"Mazzuchelli" — Samuele Carlo Mazzuchelli was born November 4, 1807, of a prominent family in Milan, Italy. At age 17, he entered the Dominican monastery at Faenza. While in Rome n 1828, he happened to hear an address given by Edward Fenwick, the Bishop of Cincinnati. This inspired him to devote himself to missionary life among the Indians, and left for Cincinnati in June, 1828. He was ordained there on September 5, 1830. He showed some talent as an architect, and erected at least 25 churches in his jurisdiction. In 1843, he returned to Italy to secure donations for his projects, and there he wrote the Memoirs here excerpted. He returned to build a college at Sinsinawa Mounds in Wisconsin. In 1847, he founded the Sisters of St. Dominic, who took up residence at Sinsinawa Mounds, but he later transferred them to his Dominican Order so that he could free himself for missionary service. They were resettled at Benton, but after Mazzuchelli's death, they reestablished themselves at Sinsinawa Mounds. He died of pleuropneumonia in Benton on February 23, 1864, a disease which he contracted while making long distance sick calls during a stormy night.113
"Miss Elizabeth Grignon" — She was born Mary Elizabeth Meade in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania on Sept. 8, 1818, the daughter of David Meade of Dublin, Ireland. She and her sister were educated at St. Mary's Seminary in Somerset, Ohio. Some of her classmates and friends were of the Lawe and Grignon families of Wisconsin, and when she took a job with the missionaries in Green Bay, she met and married Charles Augustin Grignon, the brother of one of her friends. His family was well to do from the profits of their fur trade empire, and the couple built a lavish home in the frontier area of Grand Cacalin (Kaukauna) that came to be known as the "Mansion in the Woods." They had ten children, two of whom died in the 1850's. Her husband died on April 18, 1862. After great difficulties as a single mother, her finances eventually stabilized. She died on April 29, 1898.114
"orange shrub" — a drink made from orange juice, orange peels, sugar, and vinegar. The word "shrub" comes from the Arabic sharāb (whence, "sherbet, sorbet, and syrup"). Shrubs were known in western Europe since ca. 1650, and also known in colonial America.115
"Little Priest" — "Little Prophet," "Little Priest," and "Little Chief," are all common translations of Hųgᵋxųnųga, where strictly speaking, the initial Hųk denotes a chief. The -xųnų- element can mean either "little" or "younger." An individual of this name is shown as a signatory of the treaties of 1828 and of 1832. He also had the clan name Mórajega ("Travels the Earth"), as well as the names Mąčosepga ("Black Grizzly") and Rohąt’ehiga ("Kills Many"). He was known to have been of the Bear Clan.116 In Congressman, and Minister to France, Elihu B. Washburne's speech on the Winnebago Prophet, he said, "Little Priest was one of the most reputable of all the chiefs, able, discreet, wise, and moderate, and always sincerely friendly to the whites."117 When the Black Hawk War broke out, Col. Gratiot, who was the Winnebago Agent, was ordered by the Army to seek out the Winnebago Prophet in his village at Prophetown, and to dissuade him from entering the fray. In this endeavor he was accompanied by Little Priest, Broken Shoulder, Whirling Thunder, White Crow, and Little Medicine Man. When they landed at Prophetown, they were surrounded by hostile men intent upon killing them, but the Winnebago Prophet intervened and gave them his protection. After giving them his personal hospitality for three days, he warned them that his young men were intent upon killing the lot of them, and that they must make a dash for their canoes and make good their escape. This they did, and they were vigorously pursued, but Little Priest and his friends proved stronger, and escaped to Rock Island.118 It was shortly thereafter that they visited the Kinzies at Ft. Winnebago to inform them of this failed embassy (q. v.).
Jipson also comments upon the elder Little Priest:
The Little Priest of Black Hawk fame was also called Horah-tshay-kaw [Horačeka], meaning the Traveler. He was said to have been one of the most reputable of the chiefs: able, discreet, wise and moderate and always sincerely friendly to the Whites. In 1829 and also in 1832, his residence was given as Koshkonong. One side of his nose had been destroyed and he was frequently called "Old Cut Nose." His death is said to have occurred in 1882, in a Winnebago village, on White Creek, Adam's County, Wisconsin, at an extremely advanced age. He was one of the Winnebago chiefs held as a hostage in the Black Hawk War. Little Priest had several sons, among them one called Hoank-khoo-no-nik-ka (Hųk-xųnųnįka) meaning Little Chief. He was also called Little Priest by the whites, and he was a man of much sagacity and bravery.119
Horačeka is actually a corruption of Mórajega of much the same meaning. The conversion to Christianity of this Little Priest is related in the Memoirs of Father Mazzuchelli:
While the Priest was preparing to administer the Sacrament of Baptism to a great number of Indians, one of them called “The Little Prophet” cast off the woolen blanket in which he had been wrapped and threw it far away; being asked the motive of this singular behaviour, he answered that thus he desired to show his sincerity, in utterly despoiling himself of all his evil ways and becoming a new man. This was the fruit of the familiar instructions. This Indian had comprehended the true meaning of the change which Faith in Christ should operate in the soul, that is, that change which makes us live by the spirit and die to whatever is carnal and sinful. All Christians are acquainted with this doctrine, but few indeed cast far away the mantle of their vices as did this poor savage.120
The elder Little Priest was eclipsed in fame by his son of the same name, the last war chief of the Hočągara, after whom Little Priest College is named.
|Black Hawk||The Surrender of Black Hawk||The Life Cast of Black Hawk|
"Black Hawk" — Mahkatēwi-meši-kēhkēhkwa ("Big Black Hawk") was a Sauk Warleader and chief of the British Band, who gave his name to the Black Hawk War of 1832. He was born in 1767 on Rock Island in the village of Sakenuk, the son of a prominent medicine man, Pyesa. His father took him on a raid against the Osage when he was 15 years old. There he won his first war honor, killing and scalping an enemy. At age 19, he led a large, successful raid of 200 warriors against the Osage. He inherited his father's Medicine Bundle when Pyesa was KIA in a war against the Cherokee. His difficulties with the white Americans began when he opposed the cession of land made in the 1804 treaty of St. Louis. When war with the American state broke out in 1812, Black Hawk allied himself with the Crown. The British gave him the rank of Brigadier General and command over the Indian allies headquartered at Green Bay. Black Hawk's warriors fought in numerous engagements, but in 1816 were obliged to sign a peace treaty with the U. S. recognizing the stipulations of the Treaty of 1804. In 1828, Sauk representatives consented to remove their tribe west of the Mississippi, but Black Hawk with many followers, refused to recognize this treaty's legitimacy. In 1830 and 1831, he made non-military incursions east of the Mississippi without reoccupying the land. In April, 1832, he moved his British Band of 1500 people back into Illinois, but hoped for allies did not materialize, and he began a withdrawal. His retreat was intercepted by the Illinois Militia at Old Man's Creek, and the Battle of Stillman's Run ensued, in which Black Hawk's forces routed the militia. The Sauk then moved north into what is now Wisconsin, headed for the village of White Cloud, the Winnebago Prophet. Only a few of the Hočągara had joined his force, which was made up of Sauk, Fox, Kickapoo, and later some Potawatomies. In a series of battles in Wisconsin, Black Hawk's force suffered serious attrition, culminating in the massacre at Bad Axe. At Prairie du Chien on August 27, 1832, Black Hawk surrendered to Gen. Joseph Street. Black Hawk, along with less than a dozen other leaders, were imprisoned for eight months at Jefferson Barracks. President Jackson, wishing to impress upon these leaders the true strength of white America, sent them on a tour through the east to Washington, where he met them in person. They proved to be quite an attraction in all the cities through which they passed. From Washington they were sent to prison at Fortress Monroe in Norfolk, Virginia, for six months. After their imprisonment, they were sent on a tour back to the west, where they received a positive reception in the eastern cities, but often a negative response in those places closer to the action of the war. In 1833, Black Hawk's autobiography was published. Black Hawk returned to live with his people in Iowa where he died on October 3, 1838.121
"the mother of the elder Day-kau-ray" — this is Flight of Geese, the daughter of Nąga (Keramąnįga), the wife of Spoon Decorah (Čugiga), and the mother of six sons and five daughters. One of her daughters married a trapper named "Dennis de Riviere," and after his death, married Perische Grignon; and another daughter married Jean Lecuyer. Her sons, besides Old Decorah, were Black Decorah, also known as White Pigeon (Ručgesgaga); Raisin Decorah; Rascal Decorah; Wakąjága ("Thunderbird"), often called "Thunder Hearer"; and Sųgᵋsgaga, "White Wolf," who died young.122
"Wau-tshob-ee-rah Thsoonsh-koo-nee-noh!" — for okíkčą́bira čųšgúnino, "the mirror is missing."
"shee-shee-qua" — this is the Ojibwe, zhīshīgwan, "rattle."
|Colonel Benjamin Barney, 1870|
"Captain Barney's head" — His father, Benjamin Barney, Sr., served under Gen. George Washington in the Revolutionary War from 1776-1781. Benjamin, jr., was born in Berkshire County, Massachusetts, on September 21, 1795. His family relocated to Ohio in the year 1817. In 1820, he was married there, and in 1825, he and his wife moved to Atlas, in Pike County, Illinois. He did odd jobs and worked on keel boats for a pittance.
He was thus employed in the summer and fall of 1826, and during the succeeding winter lived at Atlas, where was the only post office in Pike county. At one time on account of high water and bad roads there was no mail for three weeks. The legislature was then in session, and the citizens of Atlas and vicinity being anxious for news, hired Colonel Barney to go to Carrollton, a distance of over forty miles to get the mail. He did so, making the journey in three days, crossing streams in canoes, on logs and sometimes having to wade. Thus through unbroken paths where the snow in many places was above his knees, he made his way, carrying upon his back the mail, which weighed over sixty pounds; and for this journey he received the sum of ten dollars.123
While residing in Atlas, he took up blacksmithing.
The Captain called upon Benjamin Barney at his blacksmith shop and told him of the nature of the order he had received and asked him forthwith to mount a horse and start out to notify the settlers to assemble immediately. Benjamin Barney was engaged at his forge at the time making a plow, but he at once laid down his hammer and tongs, untied his leathern apron, left his fire to smoulder and die, and started immediately upon his mission. The men responded, and, bidding their families good-by, went forward, leaving their work to languish.124
He enrolled on April 20, 1832 as a First Lieutenant, but eight days later was elected Captain. His company was part of the Third Regiment, commanded by Col. Abram B. Dewitt, of the Brigade of Mounted Volunteers commanded by Brig. Gen. Whitesides. This company mustered out of the service at the mouth of Fox River, on May 27, 1832.125 At some point, he had been elevated to command the Second Regiment of Illinois Mounted Riflemen with the rank of Colonel. After the war, in 1834, he relocated to Barry Township, where he gave up blacksmithing for farming, and gradually prospered in this pursuit until he had sizeable landholdings.
He possessed a generous disposition, was a man of warm heart and willing hand, and ever ready to assist others less fortunate than himself and exemplifying in his life those sterling traits of character which work for the development of man's best nature. He was called to various local offices, the duties of which he discharged with promptness and fidelity, and no man enjoyed more fully the trust and good will of those with whom he was associated. While in business affairs he wrought along lines resulting in the acquirement of a handsome property he at the same time conducted his relations with his fellowmen in such a manner as to deserve their high regard and unfaltering trust.
He died in September 14, 1882.126
|Col. Lloyd James Beall|
"Lieutenant Beall's head" — this is Lloyd James Beall, born Oct. 19, 1808, at Ft. Adams, Rhode Island, to a Revolutionary War Army Captain, Lloyd Beal., He was the brother of Thomas J. Beall, also an officer in the U. S. Army.127 After entering the Academy at West Point in 1826, he was appointed Second Lieutenant in 1831, and sent to Ft. Winnebago. That same year, he transferred to Ft. Armstrong. After service in the Black Hawk War and on the frontier, he was promoted to First Lieutenant in the 2nd Dragons in 1836. He fought in the Seminole War ('37-38), participated in the Cherokee removal ('38-39). Then in 1840, he went to France to learn the French system of dragoon exercise. Upon his return, he was stationed at a number of posts, and in 1844 was made Paymaster of the U. S. Army with the rank of Major. He was in the Mexican War, after which he served in numerous outposts until the outbreak of the Civil War, at which point he resigned to fight for the South, despite having been born and raised in Rhode Island.128 He married Francis Hayne, the daughter of the U. S. Senator from South Carolina. He was Commandant of the Confederate States Marine Corps, 1861-1865. After the war he became a merchant in Richmond, Virginia. He died on Nov. 10, 1887.129
|The Grave of Felix St. Vrain
at Kellogg's Grove
"M. St Vrain" — Felix St. Vrain was born in St. Louis on March 23, 1799. He was the son of Jacques De Hault Delassus de St. Vrain, whose extended family, known by the name "Delassus," were of high rank in the ancien régime. They fled France to escape certain death at the hands of the revolutionaries. Felix St. Vrain married in 1822. Eight years later he established himself in Kaskaskia, Illinois, as a sawmill operator. Although he had no experience in dealing with any Indian tribe, he was appointed Indian Agent in 1830, largely due to the influence that his family possessed in St. Louis.130 He assumed his post as the Indian Agent to the Sac and Fox at Ft. Armstrong on Rock Island. On May 22, 1832, four men, Hawley, Hale, Fowler, and one other, left Dixon's Ferry to return home on account of the report of Indian troubles in the area. At Buffalo Grove they discovered the body of William Durley. They returned to Dixon's Ferry to report their finding. The next day they were joined by St. Vrain, whom Gen. Atkinson had delegated to send dispatches to Ft. Armstrong, and three others, Higginbotham, Floyd, and Kinney. On the way, they stopped to bury the body of Durley. After camping overnight, on May 24, shortly after breakfast, they spotted what they took to be hostile Indians numbering over 30 braves. They mounted their horses and fled at full gallop with the Indians in hot pursuit. "John Fowler was killed in about a quarter of a mile from the place where the Indians were first seen, St Vrain in half a mile, and Hale in a mile; the party lost sight of the Indians after running about eight or ten miles." The survivors, after narrow escapes, made it to Galena. The warriors in question were not Sauk, but Hočąk. It was from them that General Dodge demanded that the guilty parties be turned over for trial.131
"Griffin and Jerry" — the names of two horses. The former is mentioned only here, but Jerry was Juliette Kinzie's own mount.
"Auberry, Green, and Force" — George Force, Emmerson Green, and William Auberry. They, along with about a dozen other men from the area came together to construct a block house that they named "Blue Mounds Fort." This was necessitated by widespread depredations being committed by the Sacs in northern Illinois. Two white captives who had been seized during these operations, were left with the Hočągara by the Sac, but White Crow gave them up at this fort as a gesture of good will. A couple of days later, on June 6, 1832, some Hočągara, acting on their own, robbed and killed William Auberry. On the 20th of June, the men at the fort were becoming a bit complacent, since no action seemed immanent. So they sent Green and Force out to reconnoiter, and manned the blockhouse with only six men. The former were set upon by a force of 70 or so Sacs, and cut down in full view of the fort. Had the Sacs followed this up with a rush upon the fort, they might have killed everyone there. As it was, they stopped to dance around their victims and mutilate their corpses. This gave the garrison, such as it was, enough time to set up an effective defence. Rather than press the matter, the Sacs decided to retire.132
|A Reconstruction of Apple River Fort|
"Apple Fort" — short for "Apple River Fort," a fortification hastily thrown up by settlers in the area of what is now Elizabethtown, Illinois, in response to the Black Hawk threat, and more specifically, the defeat of the Illinois militia at Stillman's Run. Here the fort is described in detail:
Trees were felled, split, and about one hundred feet square of ground was enclosed by driving these rough posts down, close together, leaving them above ground about twelve feet. One corner of the fort was formed by the log house in which one of the settlers had lived. In the opposite corner, was built a "block house," of two stories, with the upper story projecting over the other about two feet, so that the Indians could not come up near to the building for the purpose of setting it on fire, without being exposed to the guns of the settlers, from above. On one side of the yard were built two long cabins, for dwelling purposes, and in the two corners not occupied by houses, benches were made to stand upon and reconnoitre.133
On June 24, 1832, Black Hawk attacked the fort, but was repulsed by the defenders, who sustained one KIA and one WIA. The fort was dismantled in 1847.
"Plante and Pillon" — Pillon was an engagé of John Kinzie, and his wife was Juliette Kinzie's "tidy, active little French servant." Plante and Pillon (without first names) were listed as among those hired from Mackinac by the American Fur Company in 1810-1811.134 However, without first names, it is difficult to discover anything further about their identity or their fate.
"Manaigre" — also known as Louis Frum (or Fromm). He was married, but Morrin boarded with him. He was one of the pioneers of the Portage, and apparently a good shot, as it is recorded that back in 1814, when he was a private with "the Michigans," he was the only one of his unit that hit the target in 15 shots.135
"Isidore Morrin" — according to a public document, he was a blacksmith in the employ of John Kinzie whose pay was set at $495 for the year 1831.136 His task was to do blacksmithing for the Indians in accord with the Treaty made at Prairie du Chien in 1829. He was a bachelor and roomed with Manaigre at Ft. Winnebago.
"Mâtâ" — Juliette Kinzie describes him elsewhere (p. 323) as "our faithful blacksmith," and
This latter was a tall, gaunt Frenchman, with a freckled face, a profusion of crisp, sandy hair, and an inveterate propensity to speak English. His knowledge of the language was somewhat limited, and he burlesqued it by adding an s to almost every word, and giving out each phrase with a jerk. ... He was a kind, affectionate creature, and his devotion to "Monsieur Johns" and "Madame Johns" knew no bounds.
Unfortunately, his first name is never given.
"Turcotte" — Pierre Turcotte, from Montreal, was engaged as a boatman by the American Fur Co. on May 5, 1818 for three years at Fond du Lac, and was "given to P[ierre] Grignon."137 Is he the same Pierre Turcotte who deserted his employer back in 1799, as this letter suggests?
Michilimakinac July 5, 1799.
John Askin Esquire,
ONSIEUR—I forgot to write to you yesterday for a man who deserted fifteen days ago, a winterer, who came up in the canoes. His name is Pierre Turcotte and as he has taken the route to Detroit, and as I believe that you can find him there, these are the advances which have been made him and his engagement contract. He received at Montreal 94lvs and here 2lvs 4 and his equipment which amounted to 64lvs. If you can take him, secure what he owes me, or if he cannot pay, ship him back to me by the first vessel.
J. Giasson & Co.138
He is listed as a foreigner at Ft. Howard in 1822.139
"Tshah-ko-zhah" — this is, jagúžą, literally, "what" (jagú) "one" (hižą).
"Sau-kee (Sauks) and Shoonk-hat-tay-rah (horse)" — for Zagí and šųkxétera. The latter means, "great dog," a reference to the fact that the horse had the same function as dog in earlier times: to haul loads placed on a travois.
"General Henry's troops" — James D. Henry was born in 1797 in Pennsylvania, and moved to Edwardsville, Illinois in 1822. He was barely literate, but working as a mechanic, he put himself through night school. He moved to Springfield in 1826, and was soon elected sheriff. When the Winnebago War broke out in '27, he was made adjutant in a battalion of volunteers. In 1831, tensions with the Sauks caused troops to be raised, and Henry was appointed Lt. Colonel in a volunteer regiment. When the Black Hawk War broke out in 1832, he was in command of a battalion of scouts (called "spies" at the time), and in June he was elected to command the Third Brigade. He was instrumental in the victory at Wisconsin Heights in July. He also fought at Bad Axe. He had so distinguished himself, that he had become famous and popular throughout the state, and in a public meeting in Springfield, strong support was offered should he consent to run for Governor. However, during his campaigning he had contracted a disease that affected his lungs. He sought to recover by heading to warmer climes in the south, but died in New Orleans, March 5, 1834. The city of Henry, Illinois, founded that same year, was named in his honor.140
"Fort Howard" — a fort erected on the west bank of the Fox River at Green Bay to protect the waterways to the Mississippi River from British invasion. The site was first occupied by Nicholas Perrot in 1669, and in 1717 the French erected Ft. La Baye there. That fort was burned to the ground in 1728, and rebuilt in 1733. It was abandoned in 1760, but a year later the British moved in and took it over as "Fort Edward Augustus." They in turn abandoned it during the Pontiac uprising. The American fort was deserted from 1820 to 1822 in favor of higher ground, due to an outbreak of malaria. The troops stationed there evacuated the site to go off to the Seminole War in 1841. The fort was finally decommissioned in 1853. (See Thwaites, nt. 16)
|General David Hunter|
"Lieutenant Hunter" — David Hunter was born July 21, 1802, the son of Andrew Hunter, a reverend, professor of mathematics & astronomy at Princeton, and later chaplain in the Navy. His mother's father was a signer of the Declaration of Independence. He graduated from the U. S. Military Academy in 1822. In 1827, at Jefferson Barracks in St. Louis, he came into conflict with Col. Snelling, whom he challenged to a duel. This resulted in his conviction in a court-martial, but President Adams commuted his sentence to suspension from the Army for half a year. By 1828, he had been assigned to Ft. Dearborn at Chicago. While there, he married John Kinzie's sister, Maria, making him a brother-in-law to Juliette Kinzie (see the Forsyth-Kinzie Genealogy). He wrote in 1879, "My dear wife is still alive, and in good health; and I can certify, a hundred times over, that Chicago is a first-rate place from which to get a good wife." In 1829, he was at Ft. Winnebago, where he met Lt. Jefferson D. Davis, the future President of the Confederacy. He was promoted to Captain of Dragoons in 1833. In 1836, he resigned from the Army for about five years to pursue land speculation. He reentered the Army in 1841 as a Paymaster with the rank of Major. He was in the Mexican War under Zach Taylor, but did not see any action personally.
In 1860, he began correspondence with Abraham Lincoln over the slavery issue, concerning which Hunter's detractors characterized him as an "anti-slavery zealot." He was in charge of a guard for President elect Lincoln, in the service of whom he dislocated his arm trying to hold back the press of the crowd in Buffalo, New York. In the Civil War, he was made Brigadier General of volunteers, and was wounded in the face and neck at the Battle of Bull Run. In March, 1862, he was given command of the Department of the South, and shortly thereafter was able to seize Ft. Pulaski. He was soon embroiled in controversy, when he issued General Order 11, on May 9, 1862, freeing all the slaves of Georgia, S. Carolina, and Florida. This was quickly rescinded as premature. Once again getting ahead of events, Gen. Hunter formed the first black regiment, which not only earned him the nickname, "Black Dave," but made him the target of a proclamation by Jeff Davis declaring him an outlaw subject to hanging if caught. In response to this, Gen. Hunter sent a letter to Jeff Davis a part of which is worth quoting:
You say you are fighting for liberty. Yes you are fighting for liberty: liberty to keep four millions of your fellow-beings in ignorance and degradation; – liberty to separate parents and children, husband and wife, brother and sister; – liberty to steal the products of their labor, exacted with many a cruel lash and bitter tear; – liberty to seduce their wives and daughters, and to sell your own children into bondage; – liberty to kill these children with impunity, when the murder cannot be proven by one of pure white blood. This is the kind of liberty – the liberty to do wrong – which Satan, Chief of the fallen Angels, was contending for when he was cast into Hell.
However, about four months later, the political leadership came around to his perspective and began forming "colored" units. The concise sketch of Gen. Hunter by a Colonel of colored troops is worth presenting: "It is hard not to like him when one is with him; he seems so good-natured, generous, and impulsive. He impressed me as being by habit lax, indolent, vacillating, and forgetful; but as capable of being on a given occasion prompt, decided, and heroic." In 1863, he was relieved of this command, and in March of 1864, given command of the Army of Shenandoah. In June, he won a convincing victory at Port Republic. However, eight days later, on June 19, he was defeated by Gen. Early at the Battle of Lynchburg. This resulted in his being "kicked upstairs," leaving him a Major General without field command to the end of the war. After the war he served on the honor guard for President Lincoln's funeral, and afterwards, as president of the military commission that tried the President's assassins. He died February 2, 1886, of heart failure.141
"Man-Eater" — the name in Hočąk is Wągᵋručka, a clan name of the Upper Moiety.142 His village was located on the eastern bank of Lake Koshkonong (ca. 42°52'29.9"N 88°54'38.8"W), with an 1831 trail leading up to it from the southeast.143 He was also known by a roughly equivalent Potawatomi name of Mīchītai. In a letter to Andrew Jackson Turner, P. J. Vieau gives a sketch of him:
Well, then, I never knew a chief of that name, but I knew one of the name of 'Mee-chee-tai.' He was not a full-blooded chief, but was considered as one among the Indian tribe. He was half Winnebago and Pottowatomie. He was a powerful man and a terror among the tribe. He was looked upon as a sorcerer, and lived at that time as I recollect in the neighborhood of Kosh-kau-no-nong. He used to do his trading with Jacques Vieau, my father, when my father opened his trading post in Milwaukee as early as 1795. It must be the same man Mr. Turner refers to 'Mee-chee-tai'; it means 'Heart-Eater.' Now then the above statement can be substantiated by my sister, Mrs. May Vieau Lavigne, visiting with me at present. She knew him well, too. 'Mee-chee-tai' was killed by his son in a drunken frolic about the time of the speculation in Milwaukee in '35 or '36. He killed his wife and his son 'Shaw-gun-osh' tried to save his mother; and killed the old man his father; and that ended his fearful career. He was considered a good Indian when sober. Father used to think much of him. He was honest in his dealings. He was a great juggler, performed great tricks, &c.
|Colonel Henry Gratiot|
"Henry Gratiot" — was born in St. Louis, then under the governance of the Spanish, on April 25, 1789. He was an ardent opponent of slavery, and when Missouri was admitted as a slave state, he moved north to the Galena area in Illinois so that he might live in a Free State. He and his brother purchased from the Hočągara mining rights to the lead deposits for which this region was known. Gratiot developed close personal relationships with the Hočąk nation. During the Winnebago War of 1827, however, he did allow the government to build what they later called "Ft. Gratiot" on his property. In 1830, he was given the post of Subagent to the Hočąk Nation. At the onset of the Black Hawk War in 1832, he was sent as an emissary with Little Priest and other prominent Hočągara to deliver a message from Gen. Atkinson, but they barely escaped with their lives. (For his adventure with Little Priest et alia, see above). In 1834, he sold his mining interests and established a farm in the area. Every autumn a band of Hočągara would camp on his land to visit with him and his family. In 1835, the bad condition of the Rock River bands came to his attention, so he undertook successfully to reestablish their annuities from the government. He fell ill while attempting to return to Wisconsin from Washington, and died in Baltimore, April 27, 1836. In Wisconsin, he is remembered in the names of the village of Gratiot, and the town of the same name.145
"Old Smoker" — the use of "old" is misleading, as it suggests that it is the elder Smoker as opposed to his son of the same name. Among their shared names is Tahnickseeka, which is for Tanį́ksiga, from tanį́, "tobacco"; ksi, "to have a habit, develop a habit; to overdo." The names, Charatchou, Sarrochau, Serachou, and Tshayrotshoankaw, all seem to be variants of Čéračų́ga, "Many Buffalo." Lurie suggests Čaračų́ga, "Many Deer" (although her suggestion, Čajiračoga, "Blue Wind," seems less likely).146 His village was on the site of the present town of Taycheedah. Grignon describes him as "the best of Indians."147 He was in the successful campaign, under British command, which retook Prairie du Chien from the Americans.148 In 1816, he made a long speech at Green Bay seeking reconciliation with the American authorities, complaining that the British lied to them and gave them inferior arms.149
However, despite being called "Old Smoker," this reference is clearly to the son of the older Smoker, since the latter is said to have died not long after 1815. This is what Reuben Thwaites said of the younger Smoker:
The Smoker (Charatchou, Tshayrotshoankaw) was son of Serachou (or Sarrochau), who had a village at Taycheedah, at the southern end of Lake Winnebago. The father took part in the War of 1812-15, dying soon after its close. ... The son was present at the treaty of Prairie du Chien in 1825; at that of Butte des Morts in 1827, and again in 1828. He signed neither the treaty of 1829, nor that of 1832. His village in the former year, according to John Kinzie's report, consisted of eight lodges and 145 inhabitants. He was with the whites in pursuit of Black Hawk.150
"sturgeon" — a primitive fish with no teeth, it reaches very large sizes. Its primary value is as a game fish, but the Hočągara also used it to make glue, especially to fasten feathers onto an arrow shaft. See the story Twin Sisters.
|George Catlin||William Cogswell|
|General Henry Dodge, 1833||Senator Henry Dodge in 1857||Col. Dodge Receiving the Surrender of the Miami, 1814|
"General Dodge" — Henry Dodge was born October 12, 1782 to Israel Dodge, a veteran of the Revolutionary War, and Nancy Hunter. He was the first American child born in the present state of Indiana. Israel Dodge divorced his wife and moved to Missouri, where Henry joined him at age 14. He served under his father as Deputy Sheriff in 1805, and in the following year got involved in the Burr Conspiracy, but upon learning that President Jefferson had declared the conspiracy an act of treason, he immediately renounced his participation. In 1806 he was given a commission in the Missouri Militia, and in 1813, he was appointed U. S. Marshall. With the outbreak of the War of 1812, he fielded a company of mounted Missouri Militia, and during the course of the war, rose to the rank of Major General. In an incident of that war, as recalled by his son Senator Augustus Caesar Dodge,
... the lives of five hundred men, women and children of the Miami tribe, [were] not only spared by [Henry Dodge] after they had become his prisoners, but protected from almost instant death by Colonel Dodge, who threw himself between the Miamis and the muzzles of a hundred and ten cocked rifles in the hands of Capt. Marshall Cooper's company, aimed at the Indians by brave but enraged Missourians, who had given way to the ignoble passion of revenge - the Indians having a short time before murdered a number of their kindred and friends.151
In 1827, he moved to Wisconsin, where he commanded militia during the Winnebago War. In October of that year he established himself at what is now Dodgeville. When the Black Hawk War broke out in 1832, he organized and commanded the Michigan Mounted Volunteers (Wisconsin being then part of Michigan Territory). He distinguished himself at the battles of Horseshoe Bend, Wisconsin Heights, and Bad Axe. He was then commissioned a Major and given command of the U. S. Regiment of Dragoons in 1834. He was made Governor of Wisconsin Territory from 1836 to 1841, and again from 1845 to 1848. At that time, the Territory encompassed the present states of Wisconsin, Minnesota and Iowa. He turned down attempts to nominate him for president on the Whig ticket on account of his loyalty to Martin Van Buren. When Wisconsin became a state, he served two terms as its first U. S. Senator from June 8, 1848, to March 3, 1857. He died in Burlington, Iowa, June 19, 1867.152
|The Battle of Bad Axe|
"a battle" — this is the Battle of Bad Axe, a massacre that ended the Black Hawk War. After their defeat at Wisconsin Heights, July 22, 1832, the Sauks retreated west intending to cross back over the Mississippi. At this point, their Potawatomi and Hočąk allies had slipped away, and starvation had taken a heavy toll among the remainder. On August 1, they reached the Mississippi River with the Army in hot pursuit. During the day, an action of a couple of hours ensued, with significant casualties among the Sauk. Black Hawk decided that rather than crossing the Mississippi under the guns of the U. S. Army, that it was more prudent to flee north. However, a great many of the band refused to follow him further. Most of the force and the civilians trying to escape, were trapped against the river. The gunboat Warrior entered the fray as most of the Sauks attempted to cross the Mississippi. The result was a massacre. Those who did not drown were shot. The fate of those who succeeded in crossing the river was not much better, as the pursuing Dakota allies of the government brought back 68 scalps and 22 prisoners. Black Hawk himself, accompanied by a small band of survivors, escaped north, but on 27 August 1832, under the urging of the Hočągara, he surrendered at Prairie du Chien. The 120 prisoners held by Gen. Scott were released before the end of August.153
|General Henry Atkinson|
"Old White Beaver" — the translated Indian name for General Henry Atkinson. Born in North Carolina in 1782, he entered the Infantry as a Captain in 1808. After service on the frontier, he was transferred to New York, where he was promoted to Colonel. He saw considerable action in the War of 1812, and in 1815 was given the command of the 6ᵀᴴ Infantry, a position which he held until his death. In 1819 and 1825, he led two expeditions to the Yellowstone country. In 1819, he established Ft. Atkinson, the first real U. S. settlement in Nebraska. During the expedition, he made treaties with the Arikara, the Cheyenne, the Crow, the Mandan, the Ponca, and some the Sioux. On his return to Ft. Atkinson, he also negotiated treaties with the Otoe, the Pawnee and the Omaha. He took overall command during the Black Hawk War of 1832, and although successful at the massacre at Bad Axe, he was criticized for his handling of the war generally. Ft. Leavenworth and Jefferson Barracks were constructed under his command, and he was stationed at the latter until his death on June 14, 1842.154
|General Winfield Scott, 1835||Winfield Scott, 1814|
"General Scott" — Winfield Scott (June 13, 1786 – May 29, 1866) was born in Virginia, studied law, and briefly became a lawyer, until he came to the attention of the War Department and President Jefferson, who appointed him Captain of Artillery in 1808, at the age of 21. In 1810, he openly criticized the treacherous General James Wilkerson, of whom Teddy Roosevelt once declared, "In all our history, there is no more despicable character."155 As a consequence, Scott's commission was suspended for one year. As a commander, he showed the greatest concern for his men, yet on the other hand, required of them the highest level of military discipline and attention to detail, a character trait which earned him the sobriquet of "Old Fuss and Feathers." He was a Lt. Col. when the War of 1812 broke out. After an initial foray into Canada, where his New York militia refused to follow him, he was forced to surrender, but, after prisoner exchange, was back in action in 1813 with the rank of Full Colonel. He initiated a brilliant maneuver in which he forced the British to abandon Ft. George. Promoted to Brigadier General, he was instrumental in the American victory in the Battle of Chippawa on July 5, 1814. He was seriously wounded at the Battle of Lundy's Lane twenty days later, which put him out of the war. For his heroism at Lundy's Lane, Scott was promoted to brevet Major General. During peacetime, Gen. Scott traveled more than once to France to study French tactics as they had been developed under Napoleon. He published a number of tomes on tactics, and attained the command of the Eastern Department. Cholera overtook the relief column which he commanded, thereby preventing him from assuming his intended role as commander during that the Black Hawk War. Soon thereafter, the General was credited with being the primary agent in defusing the Nullification Crisis in South Carolina in '32-33. Controversy, however, plagued his role in the Seminole and Creek War in 1836, and he was recalled to Washington. He was, unfortunately, put in charge of the Cherokee Removal, which he attempted to execute in a humane way, although his want of regular Army soldiers forced him to use Georgia militia men. However, the final phase was conducted with a measure of ruthlessness for which he must bear some responsibility. In 1841, Scott was made Commanding General of the U. S. Army, with the rank of Major General. During the Mexican War, Zachary Taylor was given command over the forces moving directly south, but Winfield Scott was reluctantly allowed to enact his plan to land in Vera Cruz, which he did successfully. The campaign, however, was marred by numerous war crimes. However, Scott proved to be a good and just military governor. In 1852, on the 54ᵀᴴ ballot, the Whigs nominated Scott to run for president against Franklin Pierce. However, the Fugitive Slave Act became the center piece of internal controversy, and the rift in the Whig Party probably cost Scott the election. Nevertheless, he was soon promoted to brevet Lieutenant General, the first to hold this rank since George Washington. When the Civil War broke out, Scott remained loyal to the Union, and devised the successful strategy known as the "Anaconda Plan," in which the blockade of the Southern coast and the seizure of the Mississippi valley would contribute to the strangulation of the Rebellion. Scott, being old and infirm, was replaced as overall commander, but lived to see the end of the war. He died, appropriately enough, at West Point, where he is buried.156
"Governor Reynolds" — John Reynolds was born on February 26, 1788 to Robert Reynolds and Margaret Moore, who had immigrated from Ireland to Philadelphia in 1785. In the year of his birth, the family moved to Tennessee country, but incidents with the Indians caused them to pull up stakes and move to the interior of the state. In 1800, they moved to Kaskaskia, Illinois. In 1808, he went back to Knoxville to study law and classics, but returned early due to his health. When the War of 1812 broke out, he served as a Private, then a Sergeant, in a Ranger unit operating in the west against the Indians, earning for himself the sobriquet, "the Old Ranger." In 1818, he was made an Associate Justice in the Illinois Supreme Court. He served in the Illinois House of Representatives, 1826-1830. In 1830, he was elected Governor of Illinois. Two years later, the Black Hawk War erupted, and he called out the Militia in response. He took the role of field commander of the force in the field, and was made Major General by President Jackson. In 1834, he resigned as Governor in order to accept a seat in the U. S. House of Representatives. This position he held until 1843. He served in the Illinois House of Representatives from 1846-1848 and as Speaker from 1852-1854. In 1860, he was a delegate to the Democratic National Convention, where he supported John C. Breckinridge for president. He died in Belleville, Illinois, in May 8, 1865.157
"Lieutenant Lacy" — this sketch is given by Lyman C. Draper:
Edgar M. Lacey, of New York, a cadet from 1822 to 1827, when he entered the army as Second Lieutenant; First Lieutenant, 1835; Captain, 1838; serving from 1831 to 1838 at Fort Winnebago, then at Fort Crawford, Prairie du Chien, where he died April 2, 1839, at the age of thirty-two years.158
"cholera" — as can be seen from the hand bill posted by the New York City Board of Health in this same year of 1832, the true cause of this disease was unknown. It is in fact caused by water or food contaminated by human feces. The disease, which is concentrated in the small intestine, is actually caused by a bacterium, the Vibrio cholerae. Its immediate effect is diarrhea so severe as to cause rapid, intensive dehydration, producing such symptoms as cold skin, decreased skin elasticity, wrinkling of the hands and feet, sunken eyes, and bluish skin. In epidemics, the death rate runs anywhere from 5 - 50%. The great pandemic that occurred in the Mississippi valley in 1832, originated in the Ganges River valley in India, then progressed to Russia in 1828 and on to western Europe, where it killed hundreds of thousands. From there it entered North America in 1832.159
"Dr. Finley" — James C. Finley was the post surgeon at Ft. Winnebago in 1832. He happened to be a cousin of Joseph Duncan, the sixth Governor of Illinois (1834-1838), and carried on a correspondence with him when he was in office.160 Apparently, he suffered from stuttering, as this snippet of conversation suggests: "Dr. Finley said, 'Guthrie, I th-th-think the B-Bishop has spoiled a t-t-tolerable good pr-preacher to m-make a v-very poor agent,' to which Mr Guthrie replied, 'I fear so, Doctor'."161
|Wakąga (Snake), 1825||The Kickapoo River at Wazeka|
"Wau-kaun-kah (the Little Snake)" — this is for Wakąga, a well-known War Chief, who died in 1838. Some have incorrectly believed that he is one and the same as Wakąhaga, "Snake Skin," and perhaps Wakąziga, "Yellow Snake" (this being the name by which the rattlesnake is known). Lurie places him in the Snake Clan.162 See the extensive biography in McKinney-Hall, where it is said:
Wakawn was in the battle of Tippecanoe, where he was slightly wounded, and is said to have borne himself bravely on that occasion. He was occasionally on the war-path during the remainder of the war, at the close of which he buried the hatchet, and has since been uniformly friendly to the American people. ... Believing in the existence, and the superiority of the true God, he could not sever the tie that bound him to the ideal deities of his people. He continued to join his tribe in their religious feasts and dances, and usually presided at the exercises. He probably had the faculty of veneration strongly developed, for his grave and solemn demeanor, on such occasions, is said to have rendered them interesting, and to have given an imposing effect to the ceremonies.163
Radin identifies the village at the mouth of the Kickapoo River (43.085809, -90.876643) to be that of Snake (Wakąga) by 1837,164 although we see that in 1829 Wakąga was living in the Lake Mendota Village.165 The town of Wauzeka located near the mouth of the Kickapoo River was the site of this village.166 Miner records that the Hočągara called this village, Waziga, "Pine," now slightly corrupted to "Wauzeka." The name Waziga is from wazí, "pine"; and -ga, a personal name suffix. So the site was named after an individual called "Pine," Waziga being a clan name in the Upper Moiety whence the chiefs were drawn. So Snake's village was also Pine's village. The reason for this dual designation is, as McKinney tells us, that Snake was a Warleader. The War Chief could be drawn from any clan, whereas the Peace Chief was usually drawn from the Thunderbird Clan. Therefore, this village has a dual designation, being the village of the War Chief and the Peace Chief simultaneously.
|Daguerreotype Portrait of James Duane Doty,
by Matthew Brady, Philadelphia, 1849/50
|The Grand Loggery
on Doty Island
"Judge Doty" — James Duane Doty was born in Salem, New York, on November 5, 1799. When he was 19 years old, he moved to Detroit to become an apprentice to the Michigan Territorial Attorney General. He began practicing law in 1819, but spent a summer on the Cass Expedition, which explored to the headwaters of the Mississippi. After practicing law before the U. S. Supreme Court in 1822, the following year, James Monroe appointed Doty to be a Federal judge for a newly created judicial district comprising western Michigan, its Upper Peninsula, and what is now Wisconsin. Before establishing himself in Prairie du Chien, he married Sarah Collins in Whitesboro, New York. From 1824 to 1832, he presided over his district from Green Bay, where he continued to live until 1841. In 1834-1835, he served as a representative in the Michigan Territorial Council. There he advocated for dividing Michigan Territory into two at Lake Michigan. In 1835, Doty ran to represent the western part of this Territory, but lost the election. In 1836, Wisconsin Territory was formed, but Doty was passed over as its first Governor in favor of Gen. Dodge. Having gained ownership of the land between Lakes Mendota and Monona, Doty measured out the grid for a new city, which was called "Madison" after the former president. He lobbied the legislature to move the capital to this site, since it was closer to both Green Bay and Milwaukee than the temporary capital at Belmont. After intensive lobbying, Madison was declared the permanent capital in 1836, and construction on the new city began in the following year. In 1838, Doty was elected as the congressional delegate from Wisconsin Territory. In 1841, President Tyler appointed him Governor of Wisconsin Territory. However, in 1844, his appointment was not renewed, so in 1845, he built his home, "the Grand Loggery," on what is now called "Doty Island," the same island on which Four Legs' village was situated. After serving in the Wisconsin Constitutional Convention in 1846, after their first effort was voted down, the following year the Convention succeeded in getting a constitution approved, and Wisconsin became a state in 1848, after which he served two terms in the U. S. House. In 1861, President Lincoln appointed Doty to be Superintendent of Indian Affairs for Utah Territory. However, the Territorial Governor at the time was in conflict with the Mormons in the Territory, and Lincoln appointed Doty to replace him in 1863. Doty was enjoying a successful tenure in office when he died on June 13, 1865.167
|Colonel Joseph Plympton|
"Major Plympton" — Joseph Plympton was born on February 24 1787, the son of Deacon Ebenezer Plympton and Martha Ewers. He had been engaged as a supercargo on a ship involved in the West Indies trade, but his career as a merchant was interrupted by the outbreak of the War of 1812. He entered the service on the Canadian frontier, and by 1813 had been promoted to First Lieutenant. He decided to make the Army his career, and by 1821 was made a captain in the Fifth United States Infantry. From 1824 to 1834, he did a tour of duty in the Old Northwest and was promoted to brevet Major on June 1, 1831, a rank which was made permanent in 1840. By the time of the Mexican War, he was a Lieutenant Colonel in the Seventh United States Infantry. On September 9 1846, in the battle of Cerro Gordo,
Lt. Colonel Plympton led his regiment at the point of the bayonet up the hill and into the main stronghold of the Mexican army, in the face of a pitiless rain of grape and shell from the guns of the enemy, which poured down upon the advancing troops from the heights above, and his regiment was the first over the enemy's walls, as well as the first to plant the American flag, with their own regimental flag, on the parapet. ... Colonel Plympton was second to none in reaching the parapet, and he stood there oblivious to his danger from the shots that were aimed at him, and with his sword waved his soldiers to follow.
He was promoted to Full Colonel on February 9, 1854, and given command of the First Regular United States Infantry. He died June 5, 1860.168
"Mr. Kercheval" — Col. Benjamin Berry Kercheval, Sr., was born at Berry Plains, Virginia on April 9, 1793, the son of John Kercheval and Jane Berry. On January 18, 1821, he married Maria Forsyth, daughter of Major Robert Forsyth, and the same year he is recorded as Indian agent at Detroit. In 1830 he bought two lots in what is now downtown Chicago, which he assigned to Robert Kinzie (the brother of John H. Kinzie). In July of 1832 he was established on the west side of the Fox River as the sutler for Ft. Howard. On September 28, 1833, in connection with the 1833 Chicago Treaty of which he was a signatory, the Board of Commissioners appointed him, along with a few others, "to act as appraiser of goods and merchandise furnished for the use of the Indians ... [and] to serve as purchaser and appraiser of horses for the use of Indians ..." He died on March 23, 1855.169 For Kercheval's relation to the Kinzies, see the Forsyth-Kinzie Genealogy.
"Lieutenant Davies" — Camillus C. Daviess (1807-1842) was born in Kentucky and entered West Point in 1825. After graduation, he served at Ft. Howard, 1830-1831, with the Fifth Infantry. He was at Ft. Winnebago from 1831-33, and saw action in the Black Hawk War. From 1833-35, he was an Army Recruiter before returning to Ft. Howard, where he served a tour of duty from 1835-1837, during which time he was promoted to First Lieutenant. He returned to Ft. Winnebago in 1837, but resigned in 1838 to take up farming in Missouri. He died while in Stanford, Kentucky at the age of 35.170
"Colonel Cutler" — this sketch was given by Lyman C. Draper:
Col. Enos Cutler, born at Brookfield, Mass., Nov. 1, 1781, graduated at Brown University at the age of nineteen, was tutor there a year, and then studied law in Cincinnati. He entered the army in 1808, as Lieutenant, promoted to a Captaincy in 1810, serving through the war of 1812, as Assistant Adjutant General, and Assistant Inspector General; Major in 1844; served under General Jackson in the Creek War, and on the Seminole campaign, made Lieut. Colonel in 1836; Colonel in 1839; resigning in 1839, and dying at Salem, Mass., July 14, 1860.171
|Friederick, Baron von Trenck||Trenck in Glatz Prison|
"Baron Trenck" — Friedrich, Freiherr von der Trenck, was born in Königsberg on February 16, 1726. In 1742 he entered the Prussian service, but a year later fell out of favor with the Emperor Frederick the Great, who upon hearing rumors of a love affair between him and the Emperor's sister Amelie, had him arrested and imprisoned in the fortress at Glatz. In 1746, he escaped this prison, and secured a position in the Russian Army. Afterwards, he entered into Austria, where he had inherited the estates of his disgraced cousin. There he acquired a position in the service of the Empress Maria Theresa. He had the bad judgement to visit Prussia in 1753, whereupon he was again arrested and imprisoned. As related in his memoirs, he made a number of audacious attempts to escape, all to no avail. Nevertheless, he was released when Maria Theresa demanded his return on the grounds that he was an officer in her service. When he visited France in 1788, he enjoyed celebrity status; but again had the bad judgement to be in the wrong place at the wrong time, when he returned to France and remained until the Terror, during which he was denounced as an Austrian agent, and guillotined on July 24, 1794.172 His fame for attempted escapes is referenced in Mark Twain's Huckleberry Finn:
Well, if that ain't just like you, Huck Finn. You can get up the infant-schooliest ways of going at a thing. Why hain't you ever read any books at all? Baron Trenck, nor Casanova, nor Benvenuto Chelleeny, nor Henri IV, nor none of them heroes? Whoever heard of getting a prisoner loose in such an old-maidy way as that?173
"Robineau" — Antoine Robineau, apart from his mention here, is known primarily as a manservant to the Baird family. In 1831, he is recorded pledging $4 to the construction of a Catholic Church in Green Bay on Father Mazzuchelli's direction, and having paid $2 of that to L. Grignon. The other two dollars that he owed went unpaid.174 This seems to be consistent with his character:
Marguerite Boursasa was our only servant beside our man. Antoine Robineau—who has been mentioned by Mrs. Kinzie in her book, Wau-Bun — certainly had a mission in this world. He must have been sent as a trial to all who ever had to deal with him. He was lazy, a maladroit in every sense of the word. He was one of the most inveterate of tobacco-chewers. This most undesirable specimen of humanity we brought with us from Mackinac as a woodchopper.175
When the Bairds went to a wedding, as they put it, "The house we left in care of Antoine, the tormentor." 176
"Currie" — in the absence of a first name, nothing could be found on this person. Juliette Kinzie says that he is "young," which suggests a birth sometime around 1810, but even with this piece of intelligence, the name is too common to turn up anything.
"Madame Bellaire" — Louis Bellair, her husband, described as "a Frenchman," settled with her in Chicago. On May 10, 1827, he is mentioned as having purchased a small tent in the Chicago estate sale for W. H. Wallace, where he also received back pay for having worked on the estate.177 Louis may be the mail carrier mentioned here:
Mails arrived once a month, carried on a man's back, and that man was still living a year ago at Portage City. His name is Bellaire.178
Portage is, of course, the site of Ft. Winnebago.
"Agathe" — She is mentioned by Father Mazzuchelli as someone he converted in 1833:
Among the most fervent souls converted to the Faith was the daughter of the chief of the tribe; at Baptism she took the name Agatha. She was a maiden of singular modesty, always occupied with her work; she was the best beloved child of the old chief, her father; she was first in attendance at every Religious duty, and was a model to all the maidens of the tribe. She was afterwards married to a young Canadian, but died soon after in sentiments of true piety, while recommending her soul to Almighty God.179
"Rascal Day-kau-ray" — said to have been called, Nah-ha-sauch-e-ka is probably for Nąhasąjįga, "He Strikes on Wood," likely a clan name that refers to the propensity of the Thunderbirds to strike trees with their lightning weapons. He was the brother of Old Decorah, "Nah-ha-sauch-e-ka De Kau-ry, usually called Rascal De Kau-ry, who did every thing he could to render himself mean and hateful, and was yet destitute of courage."180 Others say that he is called "Rascal" on account of his "trickish character."181 De la Ronde tells of his role in the death of Paquette, a powerful man, who frequently beat up others, sometime without much provocation.
When Pierre Pauquette arrived there [at Paul Grignon's house, where they were drinking], he whipped Black Wolf; Rascal De-kau-ry ran away north from where they were, right in the direction of the lodge of Man-ze-mon-e-ka, whom Pauquette had beaten the preceding day. On arriving at the chief's cabin, he informed him that Pauquette was coming to whip him again. Man-ze-mon-e-ka emerged from his lodge and told Pauquette very pointedly not to come any farther! that he had whipped him twice the day before without a cause, and if he advanced another step he was a dead man. Pauquette, putting his hand to his breast, said, "fire if you are brave," when Man-ze-mon-e-ka shot, and Pauquette fell.182
"Evil, be thou my good!" — from Book II, lines 108-110 of John Milton's Paradise Lost:
So farewell hope, and with hope farewell fear,
Farewell remorse; all good to me is lost.
Evil, be thou my good.
"salcratus" — a baking powder whose primary ingredient is sodium or potassium bicarbonate.
Notes to the Commentary
1 Nellie (Kinzie) Gordon, "A Note," in Juliette Kinzie, Wau-Bun, The "Early Day" in the North-west, 3d ed. (Chicago & New York: Rand, McNally & Company, 1901 ), 393a. This note is not found in the Crowley Club version of the 1901 edition. Nellie was the copyright holder of the former edition.
2 Kathe Crowley Conn, Juliette Kinzie: Frontier Storyteller (Madison: Wisconsin Historical Society, 2015).
3 Isaac N. Arnold, "Arnold's Address," Addresses Delivered at the Annual Meeting of the Chicago Historical Society, November 19th, 1868 (Chicago: Fergus Printing Co., 1877) 7-28 .
4 Juliette Augusta (Magill) Kinzie, "Narrative of the Massacre at Chicago, August 15, 1812, and of Some Preceding Events," 2nd Ed., Fergus Historical Series, #30.
5 Juliette Augusta McGill Kinzie, Wau-Bun, The "Early Day" in the North-west (Chicago & New York: Rand, McNally & Company, 1873 ).
6 Gordon, "A Note," (1901 Rand-McNally ed.) 393i-j.
7 Gordon, "A Note," (1901 Rand-McNally ed.) 393j.
8 "The Kinsey Family in America," Fergus Historical Series, #30: 46, #7. Find a Grave > Alexander Wolcott Kinzie.
9 Gordon, "A Note," (1901 Rand-McNally ed.) 393e-f.
10 Towler, John. The Silver Sunbeam (Joseph H. Ladd, New York: 1864), Ch. 28.
11 "The Kinsey Family in America," Fergus Historical Series, #30: 48, #8.
12 Eleanor Lytle Kinzie Gordon, "John Kinzie. A Sketch," Fergus Historical Series, #30: 55-64.
13 The Chicago Daily News, October 27, 1916.
14 Find a Grave > Eleanor Lytle "Nellie" Kinzie Gordon.
15 Joseph Kirkland, The Chicago Massacre of 1812: With Illustrations and Historical Documents (Chicago: Dibble Publishing Company, 1893) 171-172. Find a Grave > John Harris Kinzie, Jr. The contemporary press' account of this action is given in: The Press Covers the Invasion of Arkansas 1862, Vol. 1: January-June. Ed. Harvey L Hann (Widener, Arkansas: Southern Heritage Press, 2011), 311-316, 325-328. Reports are given from the New York Herald, the Boston Herald, and the Memphis Daily Appeal.
16 "The Kinsey Family in America," Fergus Historical Series, #30: 48, #9.
17 "The Kinsey Family in America," Fergus Historical Series, #30: 49, #10. There are two partially duplicated entries in Find a Grave: Capt Arthur Magill Kinzie1, and Capt Arthur Magill Kinzie2.
18 "The Kinsey Family in America," Fergus Historical Series, #30: 47, #11.
19 "The Kinsey Family in America," Fergus Historical Series, #30: 47, #12.
20 Gordon, "A Note," (1901 Rand-McNally ed.) 393g.
21 "The Kinsey Family in America," Fergus Historical Series, #30: 49, #10.
22 H. A. Leach, "The Founding of Fort Amherstburg (Malden) Along the Detroit Frontier - 1796: A Political, Military, and Legal Frontier Study, with Computer Applications" (Houston, Texas: British Market Inc., 1984).
23 Dennis Carter-Edwards, "The War of 1812 along the Detroit Frontier: A Canadian Perspective," Michigan Historical Review, 13 (Fall, 1987): 26–27.
24 D. Carter-Edwards, “Fort Malden from 1837-1842.” Research Bulletin Nation Historic Parks and Sites, Branch No. 65 (Indian and Northern Affairs Parks Canada, 1977): 21.
25 Amherstburg 1796-1996: The New Town in the Garrison Grounds. Ed. Don Tupling, 2 vols. (Amherstburg: Amherstburg Bicentennial Book Committee, 1997) Vol. 2, Chapter V, 177-180.
26 Amherstburg 1796-1996: The New Town in the Garrison Grounds, Vol. 2, Chapter VII, 285.
27 David A. Armour, “Marcot, Marguerite-Madgelaine,” in Dictionary of Canadian Biography, vol. 7 (Toronto: University of Toronto/Université Laval, 2003). John E. McDowell, “Therese Schindler of Mackinac: Upward Mobility in the Great Lakes Fur Trade,” Wisconsin Magazine of History, 61, #2 (Winter, 1977–78): 125–143. John E. McDowell, “Madame La Framboise,” Michigan History, 56 (1972): 271–286.
28 Carl Waldman, "La Framboise, Magdelaine," Biographical Dictionary of American Indian History to 1900. Revised Edition. (New York: Facts On File, Inc., 2000).
29 from the official City of Portage website (> History), viewed 1/2/18.
30 Juliette Augusta Kinzie, "Sketch of Col. John H. Kinzie," read by Isaac N. Arnold at a meeting of the Chicago Historical Society, July 11, 1877. Addresses Delivered at the Annual Meeting of the Chicago Historical Society, November 19th, 1868 (Chicago: Fergus Printing Co., 1877) 21-26.
31 Isaac N. Arnold, "Arnold's Address," Addresses Delivered at the Annual Meeting of the Chicago Historical Society, November 19th, 1868 (Chicago: Fergus Printing Co., 1877) 7-20 .
32 Morgan L. Martin, "Narrative of Morgan L. Martin," Wisconsin Historical Collections, 11 (1888): 385-415 .
33 Martin, "Narrative of Morgan L. Martin," 395.
34 James McCall, "M’Call's Journal of a Visit to Wisconsin in 1830," Wisconsin Historical Collections, 12 (1892): 170-205 [187-188].
35 McCall, "M’Call's Journal of a Visit to Wisconsin in 1830," 195.
36 William J. Snelling, "La Butte des Morts — Hillock of the Dead," Wisconsin Historical Collections, 5 (1868/1907): 95-103 [96 note].
37 Charlotte Erichsen-Brown, Medicinal and Other Uses of North American Plants: A Historical Survey with Special Reference to the Eastern Indian Tribes (New York: Courier Corporation, 2013) 142, s.v. "RED WILLOW."
38 Alfred Edward Bulger, "Events at Prairie du Chien Previous to American Occupation, 1814," Collections of the State Historical Society of Wisconsin, 13 (1895): 1-9 [1-2].
39 Bulger, "Events at Prairie du Chien Previous to American Occupation, 1814," 2.
40 Mary Elise Antoine, Prairie Du Chien (Charleston: Arcadia Publishing, 2011) 7.
41 Hiram Martin Chittenden, The American Fur Trade of the Far West: A History of the Pioneer Trading Posts and Early Fur Companies of the Missouri Valley and the Rocky Mountains and the Overland Commerce with Santa Fe, 3 vols. (New York: F. P. Harper, 1901) Vol. 1, Ch. 8, et passim.
42 "Note from Nellie Kinzie Gordon," appended to Juliette Augusta Kinzie, "Sketch of Col. John H. Kinzie," read by Isaac N. Arnold at a meeting of the Chicago Historical Society, July 11, 1877. Addresses Delivered at the Annual Meeting of the Chicago Historical Society, November 19th, 1868 (Chicago: Fergus Printing Co., 1877) 26
43 The Fort Dearborn Massacre, Written in 1814 by Lieutenant Linai T. Helm, One of the Survivors, with Letters and Narratives of Contemporary Interest, ed. Nelly Kinzie Gordon (Chicago: Rand McNally & Co., 1912) 88.
44 Willard Carl Klunder, Lewis Cass and the Politics of Moderation (Kent, Ohio: Kent State University Press, 1996). Andrew Cunningham McLaughlin, Lewis Cass (Boston: Houghton, Mifflin, 1892).
45 Gillum Ferguson, Illinois in the War of 1812 (Champaign: University of Illinois Press, 2012) 110-111.
46 Publius V. Lawson, "Summary of the Archaeology of Winnebago County, Wisconsin", Wisconsin, Wisconsin Archaeologist, 2, #2-3 (Jan. and April, 1903): 40-85 .
47 quoted in, Lawson, "Summary of the Archaeology of Winnebago County, Wisconsin", 60.
48 "Lawe and Grignon Papers, 1794-1821," X (1888): 90-141 .
49 Lawson, "Summary of the Archaeology of Winnebago County, Wisconsin," 60-61. Cf. Augustin Grignon, "Seventy-two Years' Recollections of Wisconsin," Wisconsin Historical Collections, 3 (1857): 197-295 .
50 Lawson, "Summary of the Archaeology of Winnebago County, Wisconsin," 61.
51 Grignon, "Seventy-two Years' Recollections of Wisconsin," 287.
52 Paul Radin, The Winnebago Tribe (Lincoln: University of Nebraska Press, 1990 ) 114.
53 "Mountains are often looked on as the place where sky and earth meet, a 'central point' therefore, the point through which the Axis Mundi goes, a region impregnated with the sacred, a spot where one can pass from one cosmic zone to another." Eliade, Patterns in Comparative Religion, 99-100. See also, Eliade, Shamanism, 266-269. On the relationship between the mountain and the tree, he remarks, "... the symbolism of the World Tree is complementary to that of the Central Mountain. Sometimes the two symbols coincide; usually they complete each other. But both are merely more developed mythical formulations of the Cosmic Axis (World Pillar, etc.)." Eliade, Shamanism, 269. For the concept of the Centre and its associated symbolism, see Eliade, Patterns in Comparative Religion, 81, 367-387; Mircea Eliade, The Sacred and the Profane. The Nature of Religion. The Significance of Religious Myth, Symbolism, and Ritual within Life and Culture (New York: Harcourt, Brace, & World, Inc., 1959) 40-42, 49, 57-58, 64-65; Mircea Eliade, Images and Symbols: Studies in Religious Symbolism (New York: Sheed and Ward, 1969) 42-43; William C. Beane and William G. Doty, edd., Myths, Rites, Symbols: A Mircea Eliade Reader, 2 vols. (New York: Harper & Row, 1975) 2:373; Alwyn Rees and Brinley Rees, Celtic Heritage: Ancient Tradition in Ireland and Wales (London: Thames & Hudson, 1961) Ch. VII.
54 Edward Winslow, and the Reverends Eliot, Shepard, Whitfield, and Mayhew, The Day-Breaking if not the Sun-Rising of the Gospell With the Indians in New-England (London: Printed by Rich. Cotes, for Fulk Clifton, and are to bee sold at his shop under Saint Margarets Church on New-fish-street Hill, 1647) 19.
55 George Catlin, Letter #30.
56 Lawson, "The Winnebago Tribe," 144.
57 Louise Phelps Kellogg, "The Winnebago Visit to Washington in 1828," Transactions of the Wisconsin Academy of Sciences, Arts and Letters, 29 (1935): 347-354 ; Indian Office Files, Jan. 24, 1828.
58 Publius V. Lawson, "The Winnebago Tribe," Wisconsin Archeologist, 6, #3 (July, 1907) 78-162 .
59 a note by Draper, states, "Captain Powell suggests that this may be a slight change or corruption for Nahkaw." William Powell, "William Powell's Recollections, In an Interview with Lyman C. Draper," Proceedings of the State Historical Society of Wisconsin for 1912, 3-178 [151-152].
60 Powell, "William Powell's Recollections," 151-152.
61 Grignon, "Seventy-two Years' Recollections of Wisconsin," 287.
62 Lawson, "The Winnebago Tribe," 151.
63 John T. de la Ronde, "Personal Narrative," Wisconsin Historical Collections, 7 (1876) 345-365 .
64 Lawson, "The Winnebago Tribe," 152.
65 Augustin Grignon, "Seventy-Two Years’ Recollections of Wisconsin," Collections of the State Historical Society of Wisconsin, III (1857): 295 [208, 288].
66 Lawson, "Summary of the Archaeology of Winnebago County, Wisconsin", 66.
67 "Papers of Capt. T. G. Anderson, British Indian Agent," X (1888): 142.
68 Michigan Territory Lodges. Transcribed & edited by Gary L. Heinmiller (warranted by the Grand Lodge of the State of New York, 2009) 38.
69 de la Ronde, "Personal Narrative," VII.350.
70 Daniel M. Parkinson, "Pioneer Life in Wisconsin, Wisconsin Historical Collections, II (1903 ): 326-364 [338-340]; Charles Bracken, "Further Strictures on Ford's Black Hawk War," Wisconsin Historical Collections, II (1903 ): 402-414 [404-410].
71 Charles E. Brown, "The White Crow Memorial Pilgrimage," Jefferson County Union (Oct. 20, 1918) 1-10 .
72 Brown, "The White Crow Memorial Pilgrimage," 3.
73 Col. Daniel M. Parkison, "Pioneer Life in Wisconsin," Collections of the State Historical Society of Wisconsin, I-II (1855): 326-.
74 Brown, "The White Crow Memorial Pilgrimage," 7. "Additions and Corrections," Collections of the State Historical Society of Wisconsin, X (1888): 496 (to II, 354).
75 "Additions and Corrections," X (1888): 496.
76 Milo M. Quaife, "The First Settler of Baraboo," The Wisconsin Magazine of History, 1 (1917): 319-321 .
77 de la Ronde, "Personal Narrative," VII.360. Moses Paquette, "The Wisconsin Winnebago," Collections of the State Historical Society of Wisconsin, XII (1892): 399-433 .
78 Daniel Spillane, History of the American Pianoforte: Its Technical Development, and the Trade (New York: D. Spillane, 1890) 150-151.
79 Reuben Gold Thwaites, Notes to Wau-Bun, Caxton Club Edition (1901), 404 nt. 49.
80 Cedric Dickens, Drinking with Dickens (New York: New Amsterdam Books, 1998) 55.
81 Charles Dickens, The Works of Charles Dickens, Vol. 3 (New York: Harper & Brothers, 1873) 267.
82 Paquette, "The Wisconsin Winnebago," XII.431. Thwaites, Notes to Wau-Bun, Caxton Club Edition (1901), 404 nt. 50.
83 Norton William Jipson, Story of the Winnebagoes (Chicago: The Chicago Historical Society, 1923 [unpublished]), 252.
84 A. B. Stout, "The Archeology of Eastern Sauk County, Wisconsin Archeologist," 5, #2 (Jan.-April, 1906): 227-288 . Publius V. Lawson, History of Winnebago County, Wisconsin (Chicago: C. F. Cooper & Co., 1908) 1:68-69.
85 Brown, "The White Crow Memorial Pilgrimage," 10b.
86 Find a Grave > Chief Yellow Thunder.
87 Leyland Winfield Meyer, The Life and Times of Colonel Richard M. Johnson of Kentucky (New York: Columbia University, 1932). Thwaites, Notes to Wau-Bun, Caxton Club Edition (1901), 404-405 nt. 51.
88 Satterlee Clark, "The Early History of Fort Winnebago as Narrated by Hon. Sat. Clark at the Court House in Portage, on Friday Eve., Mar. 21, ’79," The Portage Democrat, March 28, 1879 = Satterlee Clark, "Early Times at Fort Winnebago, and Black Hawk War Reminiscences," Wisconsin Historical Collections, VIII (1879): 316-320. Reuben Gold Thwaites, Notes to Wau-Bun, Caxton Club Edition (1901), 403 nt. 41.
89 Charles Philip Hexom, Indian History of Winneshiek County (Decorah, Iowa: A. K. Bailey & Son, 1913) 29-32.
90 "Indian Honor: An Incident of the Winnebago War," Wisconsin Historical Collections, Vol. V (1868): 154-155 = Western Courier, Ravenna, Ohio, February 26, 1830. Reuben Gold Thwaites, Notes to Wau-Bun, Caxton Club Edition (1901), 403 nt. 44.
91 The Fort Dearborn Massacre, Written in 1814 by Lieutenant Linai T. Helm, 85-108. Eleanor Lytle Kinzie Gordon, "John Kinzie. A Sketch," Fergus Historical Series, #30: 55-64.
92 Josiah Seymour Currey, The Story of Old Fort Dearborn (Chicago: A.C. McClurg, 1912).
93 Currey, The Story of Old Fort Dearborn, 117-164.
94 Currey, The Story of Old Fort Dearborn, 164.
95 Kirkland, The Chicago Massacre of 1812, 49 nt.
96 Currey, The Story of Old Fort Dearborn, 146-147.
97 John C. Fredriksen, The United States Army: A Chronology, 1775 to the Present, illustrated, annotated ed. (ABC-CLIO, 2010) 68.
98 Currey, The Story of Old Fort Dearborn, 144-145.
99 The Political Index, Nov. 17, 1812.
100 Kirkland, The Chicago Massacre of 1812, 174.
101 Youthful Sports (London: William Darton and Joshua Harvey, July 11, 1804) 47 pp.
102 Publius V. Lawson, "The Potawatomi," Wisconsin Archaeologist, 19, #2 (April, 1920): 41-116 .
103 History of Cook County, Illinois: Being a General Survey of Cook County History, Including a Condensed History of Chicago and Special Account of Districts Outside the City Limits; from the Earliest Settlement to the Present Time, edd. Weston Arthur Goodspeed, Daniel David Healy, 2 vols. (Chicago: The Goodspeed Historical Association, 1909) 1:83.
104 Currey, The Story of Old Fort Dearborn, 152-153.
105 Frank E. Stevens, "Illinois in the War of 1812-1814," Transactions of the Illinois State Historical Society (Springfield: Phillips Bros., 1904) 62-197 .
106 Capt. Heald's Report, April 15, 1812, in Stevens, "Illinois in the War of 1812-1814," 100.
107 Col. Thomas L. McKenney, History of the Indian tribes of North America [microform] : with biographical sketches and anecdotes of the principal chiefs : embellished with eighty portraits from the Indian gallery in the War Department at Washington, Vol. 2 - Text (Philadelphia: D. Rice, n.d.) 284-292. Reuben Gold Thwaites, Notes to Wau-Bun, Caxton Club Edition (1901), 417-418 nt. 120.
108 Nehemiah Matson, Reminiscences of Bureau County. 2 Vols. (Princeton: Republican Book and Job Office, 1872) 1:132-134.
109 History of Cook County, Illinois, 1:53-56, 87, 93, 95, 107, 155, 321. See also Thwaites, Notes to Wau-Bun, Caxton Club Edition (1901), 408 nt. 69.
110 History of Cook County, Illinois, edd. Goodspeed and Healy, 1:54-56, 88-93, 509. See also Thwaites, Notes to Wau-Bun, Caxton Club Edition (1901), 409 nt. 69.
111 Matson, Reminiscences of Bureau County, 1:130-131. See also Thwaites, Notes to Wau-Bun, Caxton Club Edition (1901), 409 nt. 69.
112 Nancy Oestreich Lurie, "A Check List of Treaty Signers by Clan Affiliation," Journal of the Wisconsin Indians Research Institute, 2, #1 (June, 1966): 50-73 [68, name 90].
113 James Davie Butler, "Father Samuel Mazzuchelli," Wisconsin Historical Collections, Vol. XIV (1898): 155-161 [notes of the editor, 155-157]. W. W. Murphy, "Biography of Father Samuel Mazzuchelli," The Republican Journal, Darlington, Wisconsin (Dec. 9, 1909): 71-79. See also Thwaites, Notes to Wau-Bun, Caxton Club Edition (1901), 411 nt. 84.
114 Virginia Glen Crane, "History and Family Values, A Good Wife's Tale. Mary Elizabeth Meade Grignon of Kaukauna, 1837-1898," Women's Wisconsin: From Native Matriarchies to the New Millennium, ed. Genevieve G. McBride (Madison: Wisconsin Historical Society, 2014) 52-63.
115 Michael Dietsch, Shrubs: An Old Fashioned Drink for Modern Times (Woodstock, Vermont: The Countryman Press, 2014).
116 "Indian Honor: An Incident of the Winnebago War," Wisconsin Historical Collections, Vol. V (1868): 154-155 = Western Courier, Ravenna, Ohio, February 26, 1830.
117 Lurie, "A Check List of Treaty Signers by Clan Affiliation," 58, name 31.
118 Charles Bent, History of Whiteside County, Illinois, from Its First Settlement to the Present Time (Morristown: L. P. Allen, 1877) 524.
119 Bent, History of Whiteside County, Illinois, 524-525.
120 Norton William Jipson, Story of the Winnebagoes (Chicago: The Chicago Historical Society, 1923) 231.
121 Black Hawk, Autobiography of Ma-ka-tai-me-she-kia-kiak, or Black Hawk, ed. John Barton Patterson (St. Louis: Continental Printing Co., 1882). William R. Smith, The History of Wisconsin, In Three Parts, Historical, Documentary and Descriptive, Part I, Vol. I (Madison: Beriah Brown, 1854) 221-406.
122 Hexom, Indian History of Winneshiek County, 32.
123 Capt. Melville D. Massie, Past and Present of Pike County, Illinois (Chicago: Clarke Publishing Company, 1906) 274-275.
124 Frank Everett Stevens, The Black Hawk War: Including a Review of Black Hawk's Life (Chicago: Frank E. Stevens, 1903) 5, 119-120.
125 Illinois. Adjutant General's Office, Record of the Services of Illinois Soldiers in the Black Hawk War, 1831-32, and in the Mexican War (Springfield, Ill.: H. W. Rokker, state printer, 1882) 94 (Capt. Benjamin Barney's Company).
126 Massie, Past and Present of Pike County, Illinois, 275.
127 Collections of the Illinois State Historical Library, Volume 2, Part 1; Volume 36: 320 nt 3; 349 nt 1.
128 Gen. George Washington Cullum, Biographical Register of the Officers: And Graduates of the U. S. Military Academy from 1802 to 1867 (Bedford: Applewood Books, 2009 ) 371, #611.
129 Bruce S. Allardice, Confederate Colonels: A Biographical Register (Columbia: University of Missouri Press, 2008) 58.
130 "Biographical Sketch," in the Missouri Historical Society Archives, A0373, Delassus-St. Vrain Family Collection, 1544-2001, page 3.
131 Smith, The History of Wisconsin, In Three Parts, Historical, Documentary and Descriptive, Part I, Vol. I, 418-420.
132 H. A. Tenney, "Early Times in Wisconsin," Wisconsin Historical Collections, I (1903 ): 94-102 [98-100]. Submitted, Nov. 20, 1849.
133 The History of Jo Daviess County, Illinois: Containing a History of the County, Its Cities, Towns ... (Chicago: H. F. Kett & Company, 1878) 583.
134 John C. Jackson, Children of the Fur Trade: Forgotten Métis of the Pacific Northwest (Missoula: Mountain Press Pub. Co., 1995) 13.
135 Capt. Thomas G. Anderson, "Anderson's Journal at Fort McKay," Wisconsin Historical Collections, IX (1882): 207-261 .
136 United States Congress, Congressional Series of United States Public Documents, Vol. 219 (Washington: U.S. Government Printing Office, 1832) Document 180, #25, page 113.
137 "American Fur Company Employees — 1818-19," XII (1892): 154-169 [168-169].
138 "Fur-Trade on the Upper Lakes 1778-1815," Wisconsin Historical Collections, XIX (1910): 234-374 .
139 Reuben G. Thwaites, "The Fur Trade in Wisconsin, 1812-1825," Wisconsin Historical Collections, XX (1911): 1-391 .
140 John Carroll Power, History of the Early Settlers of Sangamon County, Illinois: "Centennial Record" (Springfield, Illinois: E. A. Wilson & Company, 1876) 369-370.
141 Gil Wilson, "History of St.Augustine" > "St. Augustine in the Civil War" > "Brig. General David Hunter," viewed May 20, 2016. Edward A. Miller, Lincoln's Abolitionist General: The Biography of David Hunter (Columbia: University of South Carolina Press, 1997). Ezra J. Warner, Generals in Blue: Lives of the Union Commanders (Baton Rouge: Louisiana State University Press, 1964). Ira Berlin, et al., Free at Last: A Documentary History of Slavery, Freedom, and the Civil War (New York: The New Press, 1992). Reuben Gold Thwaites, Notes to Wau-Bun, Caxton Club Edition (1901), 414 nt. 102.
142 Radin, The Winnebago Tribe, 176.
143 H. L. Skavlem, "The Village Sites," Wisconsin Archaeologist, 7 #2 (April-June, 1908): 74-102 . Radin, The Winnebago Tribe, 51 Fig. 20.
144 "'Koshkonong' and 'Man Eater'," Wisconsin Magazine of History, 1, #4 (June, 1918): 420-421 [421.]
145 Timothy R. Mahoney, Provincial Lives: Middle-Class Experience in the Antebellum Middle West (New York: Cambridge University Press, 1999) 57-59.
146 Lurie, "A Check List of Treaty Signers by Clan Affiliation," 55, name 16.
147 Grignon, "Seventy-Two Years’ Recollections of Wisconsin," 288.
148 Grignon, "Seventy-Two Years’ Recollections of Wisconsin," 271.
149 "Arrival of American Troops at Green Bay, in 1816," Wisconsin Historical Collections, XIII (1895): 441-447 [444-447].
150 "Fur-Trade on the Upper Lakes 1778-1815," ed. Reuben G. Thwaites, 141 note.
151 Theron Royal Woodward, Dodge Genealogy: Descendants of Tristram Dodge (Chicago: Lanward Publishing Co., 1904) 60.
152 Louis Pelzer, Henry Dodge (Iowa City: State Historical Society of Iowa, 1911). Reuben Gold Thwaites, Notes to Wau-Bun, Caxton Club Edition (1901), 416 nt. 112.
153 James Lewis, The Black Hawk War of 1832 (Illinois Humanities Council, 2000).
154 Roger L. Nichols, General Henry Atkinson — A Western Military Career (Norman: University of Oklahoma Press, 1964).
155 David O. Stewart, American Emperor (New York: Simon & Schuster, 2011) 299.
156 John S. D. Eisenhower, Agent of Destiny: The Life and Times of General Winfield Scott (New York: The Free Press, 1997).
157 Portrait and Biographical Album of Champaign County, Ill. (Chicago: Chapman Brothers, 1887) 122-124.
158 Lyman C. Draper, "Sketch of Officers at Fort Winnebago, in 1834, and Subsequently," Wisconsin Historical Collections, VII (1876): 402-404 [402-403]. Repeated verbatim in Reuben Gold Thwaites, Notes to Wau-Bun, Caxton Club Edition (1901), 417 nt. 119.
159 Charles E. Rosenberg, The Cholera Years: The United States in 1832, 1849, and 1866 (Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 2009 ).
160 Much of this is reproduced in Elizabeth Duncan Putnam, "The Life and Services of Joseph Duncan, Governor of Illinois, 1834-1838," Transactions of the Illinois State Historical Society for the Year 1919 (Springfield: State Printers, 1920) 107-187 [146-150.]
161 Dr. E. Duis, The Good Old Times in McLean County, Illinois: Containing Two Hundred and Sixty-one Sketches of Old Settlers, a Complete Historical Sketch of the Black Hawk War and Descriptions of All Matters of Interest Relating to McLean County (Bloomington: Leader Publishing and Printing House, 1874) 195-196.
162 Lurie, "A Check List of Treaty Signers by Clan Affiliation" (Wakáŋgǝ, 60, #38).
163 Thomas Loraine McKenney (1785-1859) and James Hall (1793-1868), History of the Indian Tribes of North America, Vol. II (Philadelphia : D. Rice & Co., 1872) 107-112.
164 Paul Radin, The Winnebago Tribe (Washington: U. S. Government Printing Office, 1923) 51.
165 John H. Kinzie, Winnebago Village List (1829-1832) Lake Mendota Village.
166 B. W. Brisbois, "Recollections of Prairie du Chien," Wisconsin Historical Collections, 9 (1882): 282-302 ; C. E. Brown, "A Record of Wisconsin Antiquities," Wisconsin Archeologist, 5, ##3-4 (April-Oct., 1906): 300; cf. Virgil J. Vogel, Indian Names on Wisconsin's Map (Madison: University of Wisconsin Press, 1991) 161.
167 Alice Elizabeth Smith, James Duane Doty Frontier Promoter (Madison: State Historical Society of Wisconsin, 1954).
168 Cuyler Reynolds, Genealogical and Family History of Southern New York and the Hudson River Valley: A Record of the Achievements of Her People in the Making of a Commonwealth and the Building of a Nation, Volume 3 (New York: Lewis Historical Publishing Company, 1914) 1311. See also, Gilbert M. Plympton, Memoir of the Life and Services of Colonel Joseph Plympton, U.S. Army: With Some Account of the Family of Plympton and the Origin of the Name (New York: Evening Post Steam Presses, 1881). Reuben Gold Thwaites, Notes to Wau-Bun, Caxton Club Edition (1901), 418 nt. 123.
169 Early Chicago > Encyclopedia, s. v. "Kercheval, Col. Benjamin Berry, Sr."
170 Gen. George W. Cullum, Biographical Register of the Officers and Graduates of the U. S. Military Academy, from 1802 to 1867. 2 Vols., Rev. ed. (New York: J. Miller, 1879) 1:375, service number 618. Reuben Gold Thwaites, Notes to Wau-Bun, Caxton Club Edition (1901), 418 nt. 124.
171 Draper, "Sketch of Officers at Fort Winnebago, in 1834, and Subsequently," 402. Repeated verbatim in Reuben Gold Thwaites, Notes to Wau-Bun, Caxton Club Edition (1901), 418 nt. 125.
172 Frederick Trenck, The Life of Baron Frederick Trenck, containing his adventures, his cruel and excessive sufferings during tens years' imprisonment at the fortress of Magdeburg, by command of the late King of Prussia (Boston: T. Bedlington, 1828).
173 Mark Twain, The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn (New York: Harper, 1899) 309.
174 "Documents Relating to the Catholic Church in Green Bay, and the Mission at Little Chute, 1825-40," Wisconsin Historical Collections, XIV, 162-205 [175-176].
175 Elizabeth Thérèse Baird, "Reminiscences of Life in Territorial Wisconsin," Wisconsin Historical Collections, XV, 205-263 .
176 Baird, "Reminiscences of Life in Territorial Wisconsin," 219.
177 Ernest E. East, "The Inhabitants of Chicago, 1825-1831," Journal of the State of Illinois Historical Society, 37, #2 (June, 1944): 131-163 [135 s.v.].
178 Baird, "Reminiscences of Life in Territorial Wisconsin," 329.
179 Samuel Mazzuchelli, Memoirs: Historical and Edifying of a Missionary apostolic of the Order of Saint Dominic among Various Indian Tribes and among the Catholics and Protestants in the United States of America, trs. Sister Mary Benedicta Kennedy, OSD (Chicago: W. F. Hall Printing Co., 1915 ) Chapter XX.
180 Augustin Grignon, "Seventy-two Years' Recollections of Wisconsin," Wisconsin Historical Collections, 3 (1857) 197-295 .
181 Ronde, "Personal Narrative," 347.
182 Ronde, "Personal Narrative," 357.
Juliette Augusta McGill Kinzie, Wau-Bun, The "Early Day" in the North-west (Chicago & New York: Rand, McNally & Company, 1873 ).