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toqetheu with sketches of theiu towns and villages, educational, civil, mili- 



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■ i-i^i-^-i. 






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This work was commenced, and has been carried forward to com])letii>n, witli a s])(MMlic 
object in view, which was, to place upon record in a reliable manner and in pcnniiiiinl I'.om, 
whatever incidents of importance have transpired within what are now the limits of Crawford 
and Richland counties, since their first settlement. As preliminary lo the narrative j. roper, it 
was thought best to give a succinct history of the State at large, including an account of its pre- 
historic earthworks, of the early visitations of ti.e fui-trader and missionary, and of the jurisdic- 
tions exerciseil over this region by different governments; also of the important incidents trans- 
piring here wliile the Territory of Wisconsin was in existence. fThis part of the work is from 
» the pen of Prof. C. W. Butterfield, of Madison./ 

In the general history of the two counties, as well as in those of their cities, towns and 
villages, the reader will find that incidents, reminiscences and anecdote.' are recorded with a 
variety ajtd completeness commensurate with their importance. Herein is furnished (and this is 
said with confidence) to the present generation and to those which follow it, a valuable reflex of 
the times and deeds of the pioneers. It has been truly said that "a people that takes no pride 
in the noble achievements of remote ancestors will never achieve anything to be remembered 
with pride by remote descendants." It is believed that, in the following pages, there is erected 
to the pioneer men and women of Crawford and Richland counties a lasting monument. 

The resolutions passed by Congress in 18Y6 in reference to the preparation and preservation 
of local history, and the proclamation from the President recommending that those resolutions 
be carefully observed, have met with the very general and hearty approval of the people. In- 
deed, so acceptable has seemed this advice from our law-makers, that steps have already been 
taken in almost every thoroughly organized community throughout the land to chronicle and 


place in permanent form the annals of each neighborhood, thus rescuing from oblivion mncli 
interesting and valuable information that is irretrievably lost each year tlirotigli the deatli of old 
settlers, and the decay and ravages of time. It was thought there could be no good reason why 
the history of Crawford and Richland counties should not be placed upon as enduring a founda- 
tion as those of surrounding counties; and, to this end, no expense or pains has been si)arcd to 
render it worthy the patronage of its citizens. A number of experienced writers upon local his- 
tory under the guidance, and aided by C. W. Butterfield in Crawford county, and George A. 
Ogle in Richland county, have had the work in charge from its inception to its close ; and, iipcjn 
completion of their labor, before any portion of the manuscript was sent to the press, the whole 
was submitted to county and town committees of citizens for revision, thus insuring correctness 
and adding materially to the vulue of the book. 

The labors of all engaged in this enterprise have been cheered by the cordial assistance and 
good-will of many friends, so many, indeed, that, to attempt to name them, would, in this con- 
nection, be impracticable; to all of whom, grateful acknowledgement;; are tendered. Tlie officers 
of the State Historical Society of Wisconsin, have, from the first, been unremitting in their en- 
deavors to aid the undertaking. The press of both counties is entitled to sjiecial mention for their 
help and encouragements so generously tendered. 


April, 1884. 






Kii'St Exploi-ntiim of tbe Northwest 18 

VV seonsin visited by fur trailers iiml Jesuitmisslon- 

aries 19 

Kou tilling of Jesuit missions in Wisconsin 20 

Wisnonsin unrler French domination 21 

Wisconsin under English supreniaey 23 

Wisconsiti as a part of the Northwest Territory 25 

Wisconsin as a part of the Territory of Indiana 27 

Wisconsin as a part of Illinois Territory 29 




r Mi led Stales Attorneys 

I'liited States Marshals 




. . 35 







Area • •• 

Position ; 

Physical Eeatures 

The Kivers of the County 





Mound Huilders 

The Sioux 

Sa<-s and Koxcs 

Indian Conflicts within the County 

The Winnebnsoes 



Expedition of I,i>uis .loliet 

Expedition of Michael Accau 

i:xpcditionof Dnluth 

Perrol's Voyajre to the West 

I,a I'erriert^ liuilds a Eort on LakcPopin 

TheJourneyof Jonathan Carver .'.. . 

Observatioiis of Major Pike 

Up the Mississippi in isili 


THE W A U OF 1812-15 

Anderson's Journal 1814 



Murder of Gagaierand Lipcap 







A Winnebajro debauch 

The tirst battle of Dad Ax 

Arrival of K-ovcrninent troops 

ne-Kau-rav's imprisonment 

.lames H. Lockwood's aeeountof the Winnebago War 

Last act of the Wiunehajfo W»ir 

Mrs. Coasm Cherrier's aeeountof the Uajfuierinur- 

der '. ■ 



liattleof Stillman'sKun 

IJattle of Pecatonlea 

Haltlp of Wisconsin Heights 

Itattle of Had Ax 

Up and down the Mississippi before the Black Hawk 


Death of Ulack Hawk 




KV, V. 









Of the first live settlers ^1 

Names of early settlers 281 

An unsolx-ed problem *81 

W here the fl rst settiericnt was made ;W1 

Firtrlv customs and habits 288 

Crawford C(ninty in 18UB ^ 

Traditions and recollections of Prairie du Chlon 290 

Settli-rs between l.siil and 1840 294 

Residents who were livinif here in 183» 295 



Settlers in 1837, 1838 iind ISW 396 

i^ioneer times 296 

Incidents of pioneer history 299 

Prominent pioneers 300 



Tb(^ Ioh: cabin 

I'loiieer iLirnitiirc. . 
Primitive cookery. 
Primitive tliresliing 

Goinf*- to mill 

Wild animals 





Milit-^ry road 

The tirst school 

Thirst postal arranjrcment 

First Sunday School 

First prot^&tant meetjny-s 




Forming- and naming the County 



• 'The French Fort"— a myth 

The lirst Foit Crawford 

William Harris < 'rawford 

A reij?n of terror 

A milder reign 

The first Fort Crawford In 1833 

Zachary Taylor 

Notable events 





Congressional delegates from Michigan Territory. . . 
Congressional delegates from Wisconsin Territory. . . 

Members of the Council of Wisconsin Territory 

Members of the Assembly of Wisconsin Territory. . . 

Constitniioual conventions 

Members of the Senate 

Members of Congress. 



A model justice 

A lawyer ■ 'squashod" 

First term of the County Court 

A tribute to the late H. L. Dousraan 

Territorial Circuit Court 

Holding court under ditKcuItie^i 

A special session of the Circuit Court 

state Circuit Court \ 

' Circuit .judges. 

County Court of Crawford County 

Clerks of the Territorial Countj- Court 

Clerks of the United S'ates District Court 

Clerks of the State Circuit Court 



Present County orticials 

c;hapter XVIII. 






chapter XIX. 

ETY 408 





My .bhn .-^hiiw 430 

By .lames H. Lockwood 4.33 

l!y William . I. Snelling 440 

ByS.M. Palmer 467 






A Pioneer Incident 475 

The Vast Illimitable changing West 475 

Crawford County, in 1873 477 

The fur trade in Crawford County 479 

In Memoriara 491 

Attempted removal of the County Seat 492 



Crawford County Pensioners 531 



Prairie du Chien Patriot 534 

The Crawford County Courier .535 

The Prairie du Chien Leader 539 

The Prairie du Chien Union 540 





Recollections of Mrs. Joseph Atherton 5.59 

Village OF Bridgepoht .562 

Reminiscence of Theresa Barret te ? .564 



Village OF SOLDiEU's GitoVE 580 

Village OF Kingston 581 





DeSoto V1LL.1GE .598 

Village OF I'EKRYViLLE 603 



Village OF Bell Centek 61.) 



Reminiscence of Nancy Wayne 624 


Village OF Georgetown 626 



City OF Pbaikie DU Chien 637 





Village OF Sr.NECA 717 

Village OF Lynxville 719 




Village of Towehvillb 736 

Village of Risixg Sus 739 







Ackorley, ,lohn 

Adams, Thomas 

Akin. Vininus E 

Allen, .larob 

Alien, .I.U. 

Allen, Lemuel H 

Ames, Boi'sev I* 

Anns, Pliilenu 

Arnistrohg, Samuel 

Ateheson, ,Sr. William 
Atherton, Josepli 

liailey, Charles A 

Uailey, Andrew 

Itaker Isaac 

Baker, Charles Wesley. 

Itaker, George C 

Halrirhard, A , 

Harry, J. S 

Uarrette, Henry 

linrrette, Sr. Peter 

Uarrette, Charles 

Itarrctte, Samuel 
Karthdlomew, Peter... 

Ilassett, Harvey 

Itaxter, I)r 

Iteach, Ale.vauder >I . . 

lieaeh, S. S 

Beaumont. William 

Beeseeker, Andrew J. 

Beekwar, Andrew 

Beier, Georj^e 

Benedict, Alonzo 

Bensou, H. ,1 

Bennett, Charles P 

Biederman, C. Eliza... 

liijfelow, J. S 

Bishop, Blind T 

Blair, A. V 

Bonne.v, I^eonard 

Bosch, Andrew 

Bowen, Ethan A 

Brace, P. It 

Braman, Amos 

Breidenbaeb, .Michael.. 

Briifgs, J.J 

BrigKS, Darius \V 

Brii-'ht, Thomas C 

Bri^'htman, Prank 

Hrower, Arthur 

Brower, Thomas L... , 

Brown, S. L 

Brunson, Alfred 

Brunson, Ira B 

Brunson, Emma 

Urunner, H 

Bull. Benjamin 

Bullock, Walter U.. . 

Burrell, ,Iohn 

Burkholder, David 

Biu-nett. Thomas P. ... 
Bntterflell. LeRojT... 

(]lallawav. J. M 

Camplxll, Will G 

Campltell. Peter 

Camphell, .lamesE 

Case, Lawrence 

Casey, Dr 

Caswell. Oliver A 

Ca\'a, Louis 

< iiya, Miteh»ll 

Chapek, Prank ... 


.. eSiflhapek, Mathias ."^ 

.. 741 Christopheison, Sever 

.. (iOli Chiircliill, GeorK-e W. ... 
. . iS- Clark, Samuel Adams. ... 
.. 0:14 Clemen tson, George 

727 Coalljurn. Deitriek 

60:i Coalburu, Charles F 

. . 5(;7'Coleniau, .Johu P 

7'.il Coleman, Harrison 

. 7iiUjCollins, Kred. E 

. . ofJliK Sonant, John 

^,-^u;^ook, Pizarro 

■ • l^ijilCopper, Ralph 

■„.,^ Cothren, Montgomery M. 

('urran. James .\ 

Curts, Jr., William . . 




Dallam, James B 

Daugherty, .1. W.. 

Davis, William 

Davis, (ieorge W 

Da.v, Jeremiah 

Day, John 

Dean, George 

Dognan. Jr., James 

Denio, Aaron 

Dickson, William. 

Dickson, Thomas 

Dinioek, Redmond 0. 

Dinr^dale. James 

Dinszale, Dr 

Dousman, Jane F 

Dousiuan, llercules L 

Doyli'. Peter 

Drew, David 

Duncan. Robert 

Dutcher, William 

Eastman, B. D 

Eddy, Edward S... 

Eitsert, Henry 

;„;! Elliott, Edward C 
s^jiElwee-, Dr 


Evans, William H. 


; Evert, Fred. 

■j^j^lEyers, , Robert. 


, Fairbanks, Harry. 

J I'airlield, (ieorpre. . 
l''anifclion. .lulius. 





iSlt Ferrel, Stephen S 

Feldnumn, John Nicholas. 

Fenton, D. (i 

Kerrel, James M 

Ferrel, J. T 

Feriell, S. S 

r'u'-iFlsh, Seyniour 

'-(),. Fisher, James. .. . 

.'«,. Flint, Edwin 

■ftori Folsom, John H. . ., 
"■"'Foster, (ieorg.- W... 
632;Fri>nk, AlphcusE... 
402 Friedorieli, Marcus. 
KiO Frltsche, Charles... 
B77 Fuller, Charles S.... 

428 Gale, George 

741 Gander, David 

722 Gander, G.J 

722 Gardiner, Stephen.. 
7.50Garvey, Brothers... 


















508 i 







Garvey, Robert 

Gay, T. W 

Go\ers, Chri.stoph. , 
Gilbert, William.. . 

Glover, R. E 

Graham. Jacob 

Grelle. Charles 

Grelle, Christopher 
Guiekan, James.. .. 

Haggerty, J. A 

Haisted, L. C 

Flalverson, Ole 

Hamuierly. Leonard... 
Hamilton, Henry... . 

Harris, De.\terG 

Harris. William.. 
Harrington, George E 

Haz.en, Sanun'l 

Helgerson, Henry 

Helgerson, Martin... . 
Helgersou, Thomas... - 

Hunt, B. T 

H\uiter, J. D 

Hudlnit, I. D 

Hurlbut, John J. 

Hurlbut. John R... ... 

Hutchinson, Buel E 

Hughbanks, WilliaTn.. 



'.. 747 

. . 002 

. . 702 

, . 425 

. . 705 

. 074 

.. 074 

. . 0331 

Levi, Albert 

Levi, Nathan H.. ... . 

Lewis, W. D. C 

Lockart, Edward P 

Lockwood, James H..,. 

Lockwood, .lohn S 

Lowry, Edward. 

McAuley, William 

MeCrillis. .loseph E 

^,„!.MoCullick,L. II 

;o"|MiT)(makl, James H .. .. 
/ri McDonald, Jane 

Ingham, James 

.Tackson, Mortimer M. 

Jaokson, Orson 

Jacobia, George E 

Jaeger, Fiederick 

,Iames, Hi^nr.v T 

Jetter. Jacob 

Johnson, Daniel H.... 

.lobnston, John 

,Johns<m, Ole 

Jonet;, Joel Dart 

I'll 1.5 1 



McDonald, William 

McDougal, Charles. ... 

McDougal.J. W 

.McHarg, John 

Mclnlyro, D:n ifl 

Marsden.Sr., Thomas.. 
Marsdon.Jr., Thomas. 

.Mason, Darius 

.Mai hews, Charles A 

Matibews, Richard G.. 

.Maynard. llc'nr.v <,: 

Meimrd, Mary Ann 

.\Ienges, Michael 

Merrill, Willard 

Merrell, William D .... 

Miller, Andrew 

Millar, H. C 

Miller.G L 


Miller. North .. 

.Mills, A. E. 

^f|.';iMills, Fergus.. 
^j,:jMills, George_ 




Mills, Joseph T 

Mindham. WilMam... 
.Mitchell, Mahlon G... 

•>nr,'Momo, Grtliriel 

iJiV .M ontgomery, Archibald . . 


-Mook, David. 

Kast, Henry CO . ... 

Kast, Ira F 

Kast, J. N 

Kast, Jeremiah N 

Kast, William V. N... 

Kahler. Charles 

Kelly, F. W 

Ivenneson, Marstiii S. 

Kenyon, Lewis 

Kinder. J. It 

King, Henry C 

Kingsland, John S 

King, Lynum 

King, Rufus 

Knops, John 

Knowlton, Wiram. .. 
Knutson, Ole 

Newton, William 
Newton, John A. 

i Moore, Dr. 

6:i4 Morgan, G 

010 Morris, Robert 

400; Mumtord, Charles N.. 

2|^flNewick, Walter 


ijS Niekcrson, Marcus F 
i:.; Noggle, David... 

,..;- Volan, Peter 

.±; Norris, M. E .... 


i;:,. Nugent, Thomas 
:J;j;lNnfer, Eli 

087 otto, Henry . . 

. 601 
. 692 
. 617 
, 673 
. 391 

. 7:',o 
. om 

. 705 

. 089 



, 428 


' 680 

, .568 

Patten, James. 


La Force, Louis. . 
Lampkins, .X D 
Langdon, William 

l.alhrop. L. L 

I.athriip, Piatt A 

Laurence, Richard B 
Lawrence, Thomas.. 

I^awson S 

Learned, Charles.. . 

Leclerc, Leander 

Lester,, David K 

Lester, Hern'v C 


^''*'' Patten. J. 

722 Pease, G. W 

187 Peek, Cyrus 

017 Peterson, Hoorer M 
7.57 Peterscm, Nelson O 

018 Peterson, Peter N . . 
70<i Phillips, AnilrcwC . 
aBlPhillips, A. D 
5>V) Phillips, Friend A 
393 Phillips, Abraham 
;bi3 Pickett, Theodore F.. 

742 Pittsle.v,. lohn 

749lPorter,C. V 



Portci-, Samuil C 

Pose}', James 

Putnam, James 

RaflfauC, Jac 

Ke te iieyer. A. H .. 

Rice, Cliri8li-in 

Hichardsoii. John G 

Hk'bman, H. L 

Kogvrs, Alfred A.... 

liDg-ers, Kdwai-d 

Itojrers, Jonathan ... 

Kosenhanni, S 

Rounds. Charles R... 

Rowan, M. \V 

Kussell. A. (J 

Rutter, John 

Samufls, Alexander F . 
Schumann. Theodore. . . . 
Schweizer. iohn George. 

."■'earlc. A. N 

Sears. .Archibald 

Sharman.Sr., William.. . 

Sheridan, Philip 

Sherwood, H. i 

Sime, TostenT 

t^mereina, Frank... 
Smethurst, James.. 

.Smelhui>t. John 

SiiiiUi. ( Icorge A . - . . 

Smith, Ralph 

Speck, Charles H .. 

Spencer, J. R 

Steele, Chauncey H . 

Stefify, J 

Steiger, Emil 

Steiner, Adam 

Stein er, John G 

Sterling-, William T., 
St. Johns, Charles.. 

Stowell.J. L 

Strayer, Jacob 


571 : 


Thomas, O . B 392 

Thompson, Ambrose T^i 

Thompson, Edwin 741 

Tichnor, Dealton . ..... 397 

Tilmont, Joseph 684 

Tower, John H 609 

Tower,Jr.,John H 610 

Trott, Hannah 599 

True, Dr 428 

Turk, James. . . 703 

Turner, Samson 748 

Vanderbelt, John .. .. 
Van Vickie, Edson W. 
Vaughan, Aaron C B.. 

Vaughan, O. P 

Vaiighan, W. A 

Viele,L. F. S 



Taft, Seymour 619, Wachter, George 687 

Tat't, Sr., Alanson 618 Walton, J. B 400 

Tallman, Nelson A 745 Walton, William B 704 

Taylor, James 726, Wannemaker, Samuel L.. 631 


Ward.T.V 401 

Wayne, James N 627 

Wayne, Lewis 628 

Wayne, Nathaniel 62S 

Wayne, William 627 

Webster, Baniel 397 

Webster, Myron M 399 

Weniger. Henry 691 

Whalev. Edward A 678 

Whittemore,J. F 586 

Whitney, J.J 435 

Widman, John G 760 

Wilbur, George M 746 

Wilcox, Joseph 398 

Wilt, William 705 

\V inegar, Ferdinand .593 

Withee.A. B 726 

Withee, Daniel 727 

Wood,E. B 424 

Wolcott,Alden E 728 

Wright, E. M 681 

Young, Alexander 604 

Young, Henderson 701 


Brower, Thomas L 183 

Case, Lawrence 217 


IDousman, H. L 285 

Dousman, Mrs 286 


King, H. C 319 

Merrill, William D 133 

Otto, Henry. 








Topography 7(J'^ 

Oiogiaphy imd Geology 702 




E A l{ I,Y S ETTLE M KNT Tll'l 

(.)r;:finization of Ihc County 775 

Fiist EycMits. 7711 








TION 823 

Congressional 82) 

Legislative 821! 

County Clerk 827 

Clerks of Court 828 

Register of Deeds 828 

County Treasurers 8:i0 

Sheriffs 8;!1 

County Judges Si3 

Proseeuting Attorneys 8;j;j 

County Superintendents 8;h 

Cou nty Surveyors 834 

Coroners 8;j.t 






EDUC.\T10NAL 867 





BvLevIHouts 874 

By William Wulllng... 876 

Bv A. Hnseltine 878 

BvSalma Rogers 881 


By George H. Babb 882 

ByA.L. Hateh 884 

Byd.L.Laws 8K) 

BvJ. M. Reid 886 

By J. H. Waggoner 888 

By .lanifs H. Miner 890 

Bv Rev. John Walwortli 8!I2 

By Rev. J. H. Mathers 893 

By Mrs. Cvrus D. Turner 896 

By IsraelJanney 898 














Richland Count J' Observer , 962 

Riehland Counlj' R epublican 964 

Republican and Observer 964 

'I he Live Republican 965 

The Observer 966 

Satt's Pine River Pilot 906 

The Richland Democrat 966 

The Uii hland Rustic 967 

Uiihland County Democrat 907 

The Zouave 967 

The Sentinel 908 

Thr 1 11.1. -pendent 968 

The Richland Union Democrat 988 

Lone Rock Pilot 970 





ViLi.AOK OF Sphi NO Valley 98:! 

Village OP West Li.MA 981 



Richland City 993 

Lo.vE Rock 994 



Village OF BoAz 1015 







Village OF VioL.\ 104.5 



Early St-ttlement 1051 

Eflucatioiial 10.W 

Religious 105i 

Village OF Woodstock 10.56 

ViLLAGf; CF i'DB.l 1058 



Early Settlement lOTO 

Religious lOTB 

Elucational 1078 

Organic 1079 

Village OF Pktf.ksuurg 1080 

Village OF Neitune 1080 

Village OF Ithaca 1081 

Village of Se.xtonville 1083 



Early Settlement 1107 

First Things 1109 

Educational 1110 

Religious 1111 


TOW.v OF OlilON 11.30 

Enrlv Settlement 11.50 

FirstTliings 1132 

Educational 1I3;; 

Religious 1132 

VILL.AGE OF Obion llSl 



Richland Center 1149 

The Beginning .. 1149 

Business Development 1151 

Business Directory 1153 

Industrial Enterprises 11.56 

Village GoTcrnment 11.57 

Temperance Movement 1166 


Educational 1169 

Religious 1170 

Societies 1173 



Early Settlement 1210 

First Events 1217 

Industrial Enterprises 1318 

Religious 1219 

Educational 1219 

ViLL.tGE OF Port Andrews 1220 

Village OF Excelsior 1221 



Early Settlement 12:i7 

Organic 1241 

Educational , 1242 

Religious 124;) 

Items of Interest 1244 

Village of Rockbridge 12U 



Early Settlement 1260 

Various Matters i:'.l>i 

Schools 126-i 

Religious 1263 

Organic 1303 



Early Settlement 1268 

First Events .. 1270 

Organic 1270 

Educational 1271 

Religious 1271 

Village OF Cazenovia 1272 



Early Settlement 1281 

Educational 1284 

Religious 1383 

Historical Items 1286 

Village op LoYD 1287 




Carswell, John H 996 

Cai-swell. Mary U 99; 

Clark, H. J 117' 

Downs, D L 1213 

Fogo, W. M... 
Gribhle, Iivin 


. . 1159 James, D. G.... 


. 1195,ivmilcr, Peter. 


. . 845 Miner, James H. 

I Walworth, John 913 

879iWhitcomb, Myron 811 





Aknii. Willimn lllis! 

Allen. H. H 1U'1L> 

Allison. W ().. ll-.'7 

A Iwoi 111. Kil wa n\ M laiOj 

AndersiU), .Ahrnhain l».^4 

Andeison. Diivid.. ]2.')4 

Alliii rsiin. Jaoiili 
Andrews. Thoinus. 
Api)l"It.v. ,Ijinn.-s .. 
Atkins, CHrri M . 
Atkinson. L. E.~. . 

Austin, E. 1' 

Austin, llinini 

8:14— siwl 

BHbh. Goorjre H. 
Hachti'nIun-iRM-, James 

liaili V. II T 

Itakf'r, W \V 

Ilal-iley, William A.. -. 

Itancroft. .1. C 

Uarncs, William M 

Harron, W. C. S 

Uarn tt, Alexander. .. 

BaxtiT, L. W 

Bi-ai-. D W 

Behove. E. W 

liellville, C. U, 

liencicr, Daniel 

Iteiider. William 

Bennett, Geoijfe E 

Bennett. .Jaeob 

Henin-tt. Van S 

Benton. Josepil 

Benton, Geoive 

Benton, .Ii-., .loscph .. 
Ber^fer. Philip Daniel. 

Berr> man. .1. H 

lievier. Zenas \V 

Ililile, Moses 

Biektord. A. W 

Bills, .lames A 

Blaek, Winfleld Scott . 

Bliiek, O. K 

Black, .\le.\antier. ... 

Blake. Simon S 

lioek. Hugo N 

Bovee, Elisba 

Bovce, Durfoe 

Biiwen, 1". P 

Boweu. W..I 

Braee. Cnr-(ls E 

ISradv, .lames 

Jirad:'lia\v, ,1. W. 

Brewer, I*. E 

Brewer, I\ S 

Brewer. It. K 

BriKt-s. Ja.v W. 

Brimer, B<'?i.iamin F. . 

Brimer. .Jacob 

Ilrimer, J. X. 

Britton. Orrin I,. . .. 
BrowTU'lI. Ben,jamln B 
Buchanan. ,lr.. Knbcrt 

Buchanan. Itobert 

Bnnell. .Icsse (i 

Burnhain. V . W, . . , 

Burnhain. .1. W 

Burnham. Horace L 
Burwitz. Cliristian.. 

Itush. A H 

Bn-*b.v. Harry ... 

Button. Leonard 

Byrd. I). H 









so I 

8: ill 


Carson, .Alonzo 1220 

Carswell, George J 1004 

Carswell. .John A lOWi 

Carswell. ,lohn H lOOS, 

Carpenter, JSilas L . 12.>i 

Carver, Itandolph L 937 

Casey, F. P »4li 

Cass, George W 1003 

Cass, ,James M 1001 

Cass. Osnum - .- .... 04 1 

Gate. H. W 12.W 

Chandler, I). O 1180 

Chesemore, Stephen W.... 1318 

Chishulm, Ale.\ander 1256 

Clark, P. M 12.57 

i lark, E. I) 1230 

Clark. Homer J 864 

Clark, Edmund 1231 

Clark, J. S 12:30 

Clarson. John 12.5.') 

Cleveland, J A 1210 

Cline, Samuel 1291 

Closson, C. E 978 

Coates, W. H 1232 

Coates, H. F 12J2 

Coates, J. T.. 1232 

Cotlinbcrrv, J. W 856 

Collins, Henry 1184 

Collins, WillinmF. 1180 

Conner. Henry 12:i7 

Cook. Levi H . . llOli 

Cooper. William 1031 

Cornwall. Horace 1039, 

Coulter. William 113:> 

I'ouinbe. J. Hobert 1231 

Cratsenbersr, William iO.Mi 

Crawford, Williau: 830 

Crumbecker, A. M 1208; 

CunniUKham, M.H B. ... 12461 

Davis, John C 931 

Davis, Samuel 931 

Davis, AbijahS 1005 

Davis, George 1124 

David, O. F 1236: 

Dawson, William Henry.. 1141 

Dedcrich. Anthony 1102 

DeHart. Henry B. 931 

D< Lap. It. H «i;i 

Deinmer. .lohn Henry 114.T 

Dewey. David 12*1 

DiUKnian. Jcremiali 1220 

Di.von. William 1103 

Dobl.s. Lewi« »7(i 

Dornihoe, J(thn 1275 

Do,, ley. William 1136 

r)i,udna. W. V ]20fi, 

Doniliia. Isaac 1126 

Dove. .lames 1208) 

Dowling. James 9:34' 

Downs. D. L 940, 

Down<. William H ... IBl 

Dri'ikill, Oliediah 1206' 

Durnloril. Alfred 862 

Dunn. John 1068 

Eastland, H. A 86] 

Easllanrl. A. C 8.56 

Ka-'tland. H.W 1199 

Easthuid. K. W 801 

Kilwanls. Thomas J 087 

Eldreil, 1(. S 1007 

Elliott, Joseph 1238 


Elliett. Randolph 1236' 

Kllswi,rth. H. B 1236 

Ellswnrlh, J. S 1:J38 

Ellsworlh. M. 1)^ 1329 

;Ellsworth, Thoi^Tas J 1339 

Ellsworth, Eli 1011 

Ellsworlh, Wallace 1011 

Knishoir. llenrv 1141 

'Ewers, ,| 1364 

Ewiuf, Joshua. . . o:i4 

Fay, John 1185 

Fcrebee, Samuel 10:35 

Ferguson, John W 1067 

Flamme. John I14ti 

Fbeknor, Peter 960, 

Fogo, ,John Ill 

F(,!ro, John 9:35 

Fogo, W M 965 

Fogo. George 1346 

Ford, Nathan 1193 

Fowler, F. D 1209 

Fowler, John 1066 

Fowler. Allison 1067 

Fowler, Burgess 1067 

Fowler, John W 1007, 

Francis, William. 1254 


Hanzlik, Wenz<'l J 1278 

Harris, .\braham 1017 

Harnng, J. D jaio 

Harlan. SaEUuel. 1021 

Harn, Thomas 1287 

Harl, John 1120 

Hart, Lvnian 1126 

Hart, T M 1191 

Harfer, Andrew 1008 

Hart-ihoni. Dr 940 

Haseliine. IraS 1183 

Hascltiiie, Alden 938 

'lascltine, Hascal 827 

Hawkins, U. C 831 

Hayward, J. G. S 9:33 

j Haseliine, Oriii I2i5 

Heal, William 1267 

Herbert. Joseph 9.SC 

Helm, John ii 912 

Hendricks, Samuel 1257 

Heuthorn, William 1366 

Hice.. William 1200 

''rnncois, Jules ]3S,sl 

Freeborn, S. 1 1091 

Freeman, .Morris. 1340 

Freeman. Morris 931 

French. James 1388 

Fries, J. C 1204 

Fries, A. S 1304 

Fries, 0. C 1204 

Fries. Henrv W 8:33 

Furev. William f 967 

Furey, W. P 9:i6 

GarJleld, William W 1061 

(iartield, William W 9:(4| 

Garner, E. S I02I1 

Garner, J. W 12:351 

Gault, Samuel B 10;t6| 

Ghormlev. Michael 9:311 

iilasier. H. W 1204 

(.ileason. OtisL 1274 

Gi,ir, Thonuis WiO 

G<,yer, Joseph 94:3 

Grafton, Alexander B. ... 1105 

Graham, Charles 1119 

Graham, Thomas 1118 

Gray, Enoch 12.5:3 

Greaves, Bronson 1062 

Grilible. Irvin S65 

Glim, \athanii-l 1265 

(Jrover, Amasa 1089 

Groves, Samuel 12tW 

G fosse, Hernnui 1280 

Guess. Oliver 1263 

Guess, Albert W 1047 

Gunnell. Thomas 1037 

Hale, /achariah 9:t:f 

Hall. Calvin 1367 

Hall. William H KKIS 

llallin. B. C ... 1187 

Hamilton, Hichard Wade. 1251 
Hamilton, Herman T .. . 1350 

Hamilton, Hoswell It 1017 

Hamilton, D. S .. 828 

Haney, J.W lOox 

Hanson. Nels 1327 

Higgiubotham, N. 

Hills, F.G . 

Hillberry, George H 

(Hiilberi'v, George 

IHiliman, W.J ' 

'Hitchcock, William A.... 

Hitchcock, J. B 

Hoke, George ] 

Holcoinb. A . Jj . .. . 

Householdei-, Daniel 

Houts, O 

Hurless, Jobe M. 



Hurless, Henry H 10:15 

Huston, .John I0a5 

Hyatt, Alfred 1194 

Hyatt, S. C 1194 

Hyde, A.P ]245 

Hynek, Wensel UKi8« 

Irish, Joseph E 834 

James, N. L 1191 

James David G 1192 

James, George H 1193 

James, .\. G ; 1197 

Jaiuiey, Lot P 1115 

Jauney, William 1115 

Janncy, Israel 1244 

Janncv,John F' 1345 

Jaquish, David 9:10 

Jarvis, George 861 

Jarvis, George 1374 

.Ja.\. John .M 127S 

Jewell, John J 986 

Johns, G. A. ..■ 930 

Johnson. Sr., Isaac 1351 

Johnston, James 1292 

Jones, Samuel IIOO 

Jones. Hezckinh 114:1 

Jones, Jcdtuhaa 1189 

Jones, J. W 12ai 

Jones, Warrington 12:11 

.lones, John 1). 13:t1 

Joslin, W. H 1181 

Joslin, Carlos 1061 

Joslin, William H 831 

Kcane, John 1278 

Kell.v, John 97B 

ICi'pler, Henrv ... 1125 

Keyes, James D 1003 

Kincannon, Marion M 1226 




Kincaunon, William M... 1225 

Kinder, Peter 1224 

Kiuney, Thoiiiaa It:i4 

Kimciii, Biidiiigton 1250 

KlinVler, John 1185 

Kiiit-'bt, Joseph 1201 

Koeh, Jeremiah lOtifi 

Koeiiig-. Kev. Henry 10' 

^vr0U!?kop, Georg-e 1184 

Krouskop, Jacob 93;^ 

Krouskop, William 100;j 

Kuykeadall. Alfred .... 10(U 

Lamberson, J. G 1090 

Lane. A. D 1184 

Larson, August 1310 

Laws, James 1140 

Laws. G. L 827 

Lawrence, Fred B J2 

Lawton, Isaac R 1049 

Leather berry, Thomas J.. 1063 

Leiber.John, 1292 

Le^vis. James 1142 

Lewis. Andrew 9:i9 

Le^v'is, James. . . 860 

Lewis. William F. . . 100' 

Lincoln, O^^car B 1280 

Lincoln, Levi J 1104 

Logan. T, P 1333 

Logan, James 1233 

Looker. Edmund B 1128 

Long, Samuel 1003 

Loveless. A 829 

Lucas, James 1036 

Lunenschloss, William. .. . 1097 
Lybrand.J. W 1200 

McCarthy, Patrick H 1060 

McCarthy, Conelius 936 

McCaskev,Josiah 85' 

McCorkle, William 1092 

Miller, William 1030 

Miller, Jacob J 1030 

Miller, George 'Hi 

Miller.R. M 946 

Millison, Levi 1264 

Miner, James H Si;3 

Minctt. William Ill 

.Misslich, William 

Mitchell, G. K 946 

Moody.E. L 8:e 

Moody,Joseph 1277 

Moore,C. J 12.35 

Moore,R. S 1009 

-Moon, Joseph : . . 1123 

Morrison, Henr.y J 1003 

Moyes, James 12V9 

Muhler, George.. 10.50 

Mubler, Jr. , Amadeus 1050 

Munson, Oliver G 1210 


Kiec, Daniel 1186 

Richards, William 1131 

Rizer, John H 977 

Rolierts, Jehiel W 1293 

Hobinson, William 1033 

Hotiiiison, William 1018 

Ki'l.ilisoti. Hiiirv 1019 

lli'.lN Hnl.iii^.iii. \Villi:nii F -.-. 1019 

Uo.lolph. FriMik G 1030 

Rodolph, Charles G 859 

Rogers, Salma 1048 

Rose, Sidney 1185 

Ross, W. D. S 1201 

Ross, 1334 

Roth. George F 1040 

iiunimery. Thomas J 1039 

Kunyan, Levi 1008 

Rulau, John 827 

McCorkle, C . .M 829 

McCorkle, Joseph C 1103 

McCulhim, J. L. H 1088 

McCollum, Asa lOSS 

McCord,B. F 988 

McDonald, Daniel 1250 

McGrew, J. B 11: 

McKay, R. N 1311 

McKee, J. L 1186 

MoMahan, Isaac 936 

McMillan, Samuel 938 

McMurtrie, Joseph 833 

McMurtrey, Lee 1207 

McNelly. Henry 940 

McNurlen. William 1005 

Mainwaring, John ... . 1140 
Manning.ErasmusDarwin 1038 

Manchester, T. A 1042 

Manlev.Menzies Phelps 1095 

MarshiS. B 1231 

Marshall. Joseph 1115 

Marshall, George L Ill" 

Martin, James 1199 

Mark ham. Edward 1292 

Mason, Thomas 1063 

Mason, James Edward 1063 

Mathews, Hubert 1034 

Malh'ws, Thomas 1135 

Matthews, John J 831 

Ma vfield, David :.... 1137 

Mayfleld, Green ,. 1137 

Meeker, John A 1060 

Meeker, Robert Douglas,. 1066 

Merrill, Henty ... 1124 

Mickel,George N 1290 

Miller, Abrara 1143 

Miller, John 1144 

Miller, Henry 1227 

.Munson, Martin 

. . . . 9 '4 

Murray, William 

.... 1391 

.Murphy, Daniel 

... 1287 

Murphy, Edward . -. 

.... 12.-.3 

Murphy. Michael 

.... SU4 

Neefe, Charles A 

.... 986 

Neff, Alberts 

.... 10113 

Newburn Jeremiah B.... UWt ^,.,)iindt, FrederickC. 

Nicliols D P.. It"': Schuruu n, William 

.\oble, WjlliamJ 1115 • . . ■ - 

Noble,Daniel 1121 

>f oble, Samuel 1334 

Norman, Sr., George 1064 

Norman, George 1064 

Norman, Caleb H 1064 


Sttltsman, WilUam 1126 

alisburv, John 1389 

Sands. John G 1359 

Sanfont, Frank 1309 

Sargent, George L 1011 

Scholl, ClnistDpher.. 1358 

Srlmiitz, Mathias Joseph. 1105 

Seliniitz, Mrs. M.J 1105 


Scott, John S 1352 

Sellers, James A 985 

Se.\ton, E. M 8.5' 

Sexton. Morris 931 

Shaffer. John - . 1037 

Shambaugh. Adam 941 

.loshuaJ W^f Sherman, Frederick IKiS 

Norman. J -imes OWI^ijcrman, M. L 1207 

Nourse, Elijah lyi'? Shireman, Ammi 1191 

Nudd, Amos 859 

Ogden, William 1263 

~ " 1104 



Ostrander, D. B.. 
Ott, Isaac G. B 

Page, Andrew J 

Palmer, Oswald 

Palmer, L. B 

Partrey, Edward 

Paifrey, A. 

Parsons, DavidE 

Parsons, Thomas 

Patch, Francis M 

Pease, Myron C 

Pease, E 

Peckhara, Levi 

Pecknam. W. R 

Pepin, Cleophus 

Persinger, Levi 

Phoenix, Ludger 

Pickard, W. J 

Pickard, S. W 

Pickering, William... 

Pierce, Converse 

Pierson, Charles B ... 

Powell, Joseph 

Pratt, Richard . 

Pratt. \V. E 

Priest, Henry 

Priest, Daniel B 

Shontz, John A 1098 

Shookman Philip 1258 

Schuerman, Henry 1139 

Sigrist, Henry 1139 

Simons, Jacob 931 

Simpson, William., 
i^ipp.v, Joseph — 
834isires, Alexander. 

1306 stater, (ieorge 

13iii; Slaughter, A. B . 

831 .-^l.ieuin, C. W 

313.j;smith, B.N.. 





1017 Smith, Frank O. 
936 Smith, Mathias M.. 

1305 Smith, Whitney 

1134 Smith. IsuacO 

SSu^Smith, Philip 

1050 Smith, John 

1228 Smith, .Vngus 

1275 Smith, David 

1193Smith, 0. H 

lli'7;smith, Henry J 934 

1034 Smith, Edward. 1234 

1279. Smith, Jerry A 
S'O Smyth. John H 1291 

1032 Snow, Daniel 125-, 

1-53 Soule. James J u.^o 

1301 Southard, Ransom E 1087 

"I Southard, James 108' 

858 Spaugler, GeorgeL 1308 

Stayton, John . . 1347 

Stewart, R. B 1287 

Stewart, Mahlon 987 

Stewart, J.imes H 988 

Stewart, Charles D 860 

Stevenson, F. M 12,59 

Stockton, J. C 1188 

Storms, Daniel 1197 

]0."..«'>ituwi-ll, Anson 106.'' 

louii stockwell, Robert M 1065 


Strang, George H 1310 

Straight. Albert J 1354 

Stratton, A. M... 132!i 

Stroud. A. E 861 

Stuart, Charles 1256 

Surrem, JohnE 1031 

Sutton, K 865 

Sweet, W.S 864 

ladder, German . 938 

Telfair, Byron W 857 

relfair, R. L 945 

Thomas, L. G 1006 

Thomas, J. M 1102 

Thompson, A. P 8.57 

Thorp, L. M 1337 

Tinker, Allen 1376 

Toms, Henry 1204 

Totton, Jonathan 936 

Towsley. A. W 1009 

Tracy, Lucius 1089 

Travers, .\rthur W 1065 

Travers, H enry 1065 

Truesdale, John 1127 

Tubbs, R. A 1049 

Turgasen, .lohu 975 

Turner, Jonathan 1049 

VanDuscn, Lawrence. 
Van Pool. Jacob 


Queen, Benjamin W.. 

Ragles, .\b'-l 

Randall, Miles., 

Reagles, Ezra 

Reeob, William 

Recob, William.. 

Rcnick, Lattiraore 

Reynolds, Jctterson J iiu„„,i »., m^, 

Rhodes, Joseph H 1007, Stoddard, Valentine 128 





Waddell, John 1183 

Waggoner, Peter 13.56 

Waggoner, Caleb 1189 

Waggoner, William J 1049 

Walworth. John 1301 

Wail H. J 946 

Wallace, John 1003 

Wal lace David 938 

Walker, J. F 1197 

Waller, George W ... 1040 

Walser, Henry T 1068 

Walser, Hiram H 1068 

Wanless, Archibald 1120 

Ward, Edgiir 979 

Washburn, James 1358 

Washburn, B. F 1235 

Watt, James 1266 

Webb, Robert ; 978 

Weldy. James D 1038 

Wenker, Sebastian 1379 

Welton, Hiram 833 

Weltoii, S 12.51 

West, Edward 1376 

West, Moses B 1349 

Wheaton, Theodore 1041 

Wherry, Demas 10(33 

Whitcomb, C. U 1224 

Vv'hitcomb, Myron 1225 

Whitcraft, Thomas J 1190 

White, George C 8:il 

White, Marvin 838 

Wildermuth, David 1289 

Wilev, William 1356 

Willis, John W 1394 

Wilson. John S ... 859 

Wiltrout, Adam A 1048 

Winn, John 1193 

Winterburn, Benjamin... 1101 

Winton, Nathan 1332 

Wolf, Abraham 1009 

Wright, T. J 1191 

Wright, .luhn 1388 

Wright, J. 947 

Wright, W. C 86 1 

Wulting, E. C 861 

Wulting, William 1182 

Young, E. P. 


Certificates of Crawford and Richland Counties. 

We the undersignei members of the committee appointed to revise and correct the General History of ( rnwford 
County. Wisconsin, do hereby certify that the manuscript of said history was S'lhmitted to us and that we made all the 
ehansres and additions that wo, in oiir judx-ment, deemed necessary: and as corrected, we are satislled with and approve 
the same. Prairie du Chien, Jan. 29. 1884. [Signed.] Wm. T. sterling, 1 

B. W. lirisbois, I 

James Fisher I 

John H. Tower, J Committee. 

Wm. I). Merrell. 
Alexander M. Beach, 
John R. Hurlbut, 

We the undersigned committee appointed for the purpose of correcting the History of our respective towns for the 
tory .)f Crawford County, hereby eerlity that the manu-<cript has been read to us, and that to the best of our recoUec- 

IIi-_ „ _ _ ,. ... 

tion, with the corrections arid additions we have made, the same is a correct history. 

H. C. King, 

H. Barrette, 

Mrs. Lydia Atherton. 

Bridycimrt . 

G. A. Smith, 
C. W. Baker. 

Z. Beach, 

James Fisher, 
A. N. Hazen. 


Kcmlman . 

John H. Tower, 
Henry Eibret. 

W. D. C. Lewis, 
J. N. Kast. 


Samuel A. Clark, 
John Folsom, 
T. A. Savage. 

Prairie du Chicn. 


S. L. Wannomaker, 
S. S. Kerrel, 
J. M. Callaway. 

Marietta . 

J. H. Hurlbut, 
Chancey Kast, 
Charles Coalburn. 


Edward Garvey. 
Samuel Armstrong. 

James .\. Cnrran, 
William T. Sterlinj; 

Kalph Smith. 
Mrs. K. Smith. 

Srucca . 



We, the undersigned, members of the committee appointed to re\nse and correct the general chapters of the History of 
Richland county, Wisconsin, compiled bv the Union I'ulilishing Company of Sprins-llcld, Illinois, hereby certify that the 
saiil manuscript was submilled to us; that wc examined aTid hoard the same read, and that we have made all thechanges, 
corrections and additions tliat wi' in our judgment and to the best o( our rccollecti<jn deem necessary, and as corrected we 
are satistled with and approve of the same. 

Richland Center, Jan. 8, 1884. [Signed.! D. I,. Downs. 

James H. Miner, 

J. M. Thonms, ycommittee. 

R. M. Miller. 

Israel Janney. 



Jns. Bnchtenkirchor, 
James Brad.v, 
John Torgerson. 


Wm. Pi/.er, 
J. M. Hurless, 
D. V. DeHart. 


Samuel Long, 
J. W. Fuller, 
L. G. Thomas. 

Buena Vista. 

J. T. Barnes, 
Jacob Berger. 


J. n. Newliurn, 
George Miller, 
William Robinson. 


Salma Rogers, 
h. Clift. 


L. Renick. 
J. M. Garfield. 
P. H. McCarthy. 


William Dixon, 
C. G. Thomas, 
Peter A. Micklc, 
E. Devoe. 


Daniel Noble. 
Archibald Wanless. 
W. F. Kepler. 


Thomas Mathews. 
William Doolc.v, 
H enry Sigrist. 

Orion . 

James H. Miner, 
David G. James. 
D. Strickland, 
David Mayfiold. 

Samuel Noble, 
R. M. Miller, 
Joseph Elliott. 

Rich wood. 

Abel P. Hyde, 
George Fogo, 
J. S. Scott. 

Riickltriil^ic . 

Asahel Savage. 
Geo. H. Babb. 
N. Grim. 


.Tohn Donahoe. 
A. Tinker, 
Moses Bible. fori) . 

James French. 
R. B. Stewart. 
V. Stoddard. 






AT a remote period there lived in this coun- 
try a people now desi<fnated mound build- 
ers. Of their origin nothing is known. Their 
liistory is lost in the lapse of ages. The evi- 
dences, however, of their existence in Wiscon- 
sin and surrounding States are numerous. 
Many of their earth works — the so-called 
mounds — are still to be seen. These are of 
various forms. Some are regularly arranged, 
forming squares, octagons and circ'es; others are 
like walls or ramparts; while many, especially 
in Wisconsin, are imitative in figure, having 
tlie shape of implements or animals, resembling 
war clubs, tobacco pipes, beasts, reptiles, fish 
and even man. A few are in the similitude of 

In selecting sites for many of their earth 
works, the mound-buililiTs appear to liave been 
influenced by motives which prompt civilized 
men to choose localities for tlieir great marts; 
hence, Milwaukee and other cities of the 
west are founded on ruins of pre-existing struc- 
tures. River terraces and river bottoms seem 

to have been favorite places for these mounds. 
Their works are seen in the basin of the Fox 
river, of the Illinois, and of Rock river and its 
branches, also in the valley of the Fox river of 
Green bay, in that of the Wisconsin, as well as 
near the waters of the Mississippi. As to the 
object of these earth works, all knowledge rests 
upon conjecture alone. It is generally believed 
that some were used for purposes of defense, 
others for the observance of religious rites and 
as burial places. 

In some parts of Wisconsin are seen earth 
works of a different character from those usu- 
ally denominated "mounds." These, from their 
supposed use, are styled "garden beds." They 
are ridges or beds about six inches in height, 
and four feet in width. They are arranged 
methodically and in parallel rows. Some are 
rectangular in shape; others are in regular 
curves. Tliese beds occupy fields of various 
sizes, from ten to a hundred acres. 

The mound builders have left other evidences 
besides mounds and garden beds, to attest their 



presence in this country, in ages past. In tiie 
Lake Superior region exist ancient copper 
mines, excavations in the solid rock. In these 
mines have been found stone hammers, wooden 
bowls and shovels, props and levers for raising 
and supporting m.a88 copper, and ladders for 
descending into the pits and ascending from 

There are, also, scattered widely over the 
country, numerous relics, evidently the handi- 
work of these pre-historic people; such as stone 
axes, stone and copper spear-heads and arrow 
heads, and various other implements and uten- 
sils. As these articles are frequently discov- 
ered many feet below the surface of the ground, 
it argues a high antiquity for the artificers. 
These relics indicate that the mound builders 
were superior in intelligence to the Indians. 
None of their implements or utensils, however, 
point to a "copper age" as having succeeded a 
"stone age." They all refer alike to one age, 
the indefinite past; to one people, the mound 

There is nothing to connect "the dark back- 
ward and abysm" of mound-buildiug times with 
those of the red race of Wisconsin. And all 
that is known of the savages inhabiting this 
section previous to its discovery, is exceedingly 
dim and shadowy. Upon the extended area 
bounded by Lake Superior on the north. Lake 
Michigan on the east, wide-spreading prairies 
on the south, and the Mississippi river on the 
west, there met and mingled two distinct In- 
dian families, Algonquins and Dakotas. Con- 
cerning the various tribes of these families, 
nothing of importance could be gleaned by the 
earliest explorers; at least, vei'y little has been 
preserved. Tradition, it is true, pointed to the 
Algonquins as having, at some remote period, 
migrated from the east, and this has been con- 
firmed by a study of their language. It indi- 
cated, also, that the Dakotas, at a time far be- 
yond the memory of the most aged, came from 
the west or southwest, fighting their way as 
they came; that one of their tribes once dwelt 

upon the shores of a sea; but when and for 
what purpose they left their home for the 
country of the great lakes there was no evi- 
dence. This was all. In reality, therefore, 
Wisconsin has no veritable history ante-dating 
its discovery by civilized man. The country 
has been heard of, but only through vague re- 
ports of savages.* There were no accounts at 
all, besides these, of the extensive region of 
the upjjer lakes; while of the valley of the 
upper Mississippi, nothing whatever was known. 


The history of Wisconsin commences with 
the recital of the indomitable perseverance and 
heroic bravery displayed by its first visitant, 
John Nicolet. An investigation of the career 
of this Frenchman shows him, at an early age, 
leaving his home in Normandy for the new 
world, landing at Quebec in 1618, and at once 
seeking a residence among the Algonquins of 
the Ottawa river, in Canada, sent thither by 
the governor to learn their language. In the 
midst of many hardships, and surrounded by 
perils, he applied himself with great zeal to 
his task. Having become familiar with the 
Algonquin tongue, he was admitted into the 
councils of the savages. 

The return of Nicolet to civilization, after a 
number of years immured in the dark forests of 
Canada, an excellent interpreter, qualified hini 
to act as government agent among the wild 
western tribes in promoting peace, to the end 
that all who had been visited by the fur-trader 
might remain firm allies of the French. Nay, 
further: it resulted in his being dispatched to 
Nations far beyond the Ottawa, known only by 
heresay, with whom it was believed might be 
opened a profila' le trade in furs. So he started 
on his perilous voyage. He visited the Hurons, 
upon the Georgian bay. With seven of that 
Nation, he struck boldly into wilds to the north- 
ward and westward never before visited by civ- 
ilized man. He paddled his birch canoe along 

•Compare Champlaiu'8 Voyages, 1632, and his map of that 
date; Sagard's, Histoire du Canada: he Jeune Relation, 1633. 



the eastern coast of Lake Huron and up the St. 
Mary's Strait to the falls. He floated back to 
the Straits of Mackinaw, and courageously 
turned his face toward the west. At the Sault de 
Ste. Marie, he had — the first of white men — set 
foot upon the soil of the northwest. 

Nicolet coasted along the northern shore of 
Lake Michigan, ascended Green Bay, and finally 
entered the mouth of Fo.x river. It was not 
until he and his swarthy Hurons had urged their 
frail canoes six days up that streain, that his 
western exploration was ended. He had, mean- 
while, on his way hither, visited a number of 
tribes; some that had never before been heard 
of by the French upon the St. Lawrence. 
With them all he smoked the pipe of peace; 
with the ancestors of the present Cbippewas, 
at the Sault; with the Menomonees,theWinneba- 
goes, the Mascoutins, in what is now the State 
of Wisconsin; with the Ottawas, upon the Man- 
itoulin Islands, and the Nez Ferces, upon the east 
coast of Lake Huron. He made his outward 
voyage in the summer and fall of 16.34, and re- 
turned the next year to the St. Lawrence. He 
did not reach the Wisconsin river, but heard 
of a "great water" to the westward, which he 
mistook for the sea. It was, in fact, that stream, 
and the Mississippi, into which it pours its 

"History cannot refrain from saluting Nicolet 
as a distinguished traveler, who, by his explora- 
tions in the northwest, has given clear proofs 
of his energetic character, and whose merits 
have not been disputed, although, subsequently, 
they were temporarily forgotten." The first 
fruits of his daring were gathered by the Jesuit 
fathers, even before his death; for, in the autumn 
of 1641, those of them who were among the 
Hurons at the head of the Georgian bay of 
Lake Huron, received a deputation of Indians 
occupying the "country around a rapid [now 
known as the 'Sault de Ste. Marie'], in the midst 
of the channel by wliich Lake Superior empties 
into Lake Huron," inviting them to visit their 
tribe. These "missionaries were not displeased 

with the opportunity thus presented of knowing 
the countries lying beyond Lake Huron, which 
no one of them had yet traveled;" so Isaac 
Jogues and Charles Raymbault were detached 
to accompany the Chippewa deputies, and view 
the field simply, not to establish a mission. 
They passed along the shore of Lake Huron, 
northward, and pushed as far up St. Mary's 
strait as the Sault, which they reached after 
seventeen days' sail from their place of starting. 
There they — the first white men to visit the 
northwest after Nicolet — harrangued 2,000 
Cbippewas and other Algonquins. Upon their 
return to the St. Lawrence, Jogues was captured 
by the Iroquois, and Kaymbault died on the 
22d of October, 1642, — a few days before the 
death of Nicolet.* 


Very faint, indeed, are the gleams W'hich 
break in upon the darkness surrounding our 
knowledge of events immediately following the 
visit of Nicolet, in what is now the State of 
Wisconsin. That the Winnebagoes, soon after 
his return, made war upon the Nez Perces, kill- 
ing two of their men, of whom they made a 
feast, we are assured.* We also know that in 
1640, these same Winnebagoes were nearly all 
destroyed by the Illinois ; and that the next 
year, the Pottawattamies took refuge from their 
homes upon the islands at the mouth of Green 
bay, with the Cbippewas. f This is all. And 
had it not been for the greed of the fur trader 
and the zeal of the Jesuit, little more, 
for many years, probably, would have been 
learned of the northwest. However, a ques- 
tioning missionary, took from the lips of an 
Indian captainj "an account of his having, in 
the month of June, 1658, set out from Green 
Bay for the north, passing tiie rest of the sum- 
mer and the following winter near Lake Supe- 

* History of tlic di-^covcry of tlie uortliwest by John Nico- 
let in lti;)4, with a skctcti ol his life, by C, W. Uutterfleld, 
Cincinniiti. tiobertClarlte &Co., 1881. 

•LeJoune, Kelation, llilifl. 

tCol. Hist. New Yoric ix, 161. 

i Not ' 'captive, " as some local histories hare It. 



rior ; so called iu consequence of being above 
that of Lake Huron. Thia Indian informed the 
Jesuit of the havoc and desolation of the Iro- 
quois war in the west ; how it had reduced the 
Algonquin Nations about Lake Superior and 
Green bay. The same missionary saw at Que- 
bec, two Frenchmen who had just arrived 
from the upper countries with 300 Algon- 
quins in sixty canoes, laden with peltries. These 
fur traders had passed the winter of 1659 on the 
shores of Lake Superior, during which time they 
made several trips among the surrounding 
tribes. In their wanderings they probably vis- 
ited some of the northern parts of what is 
now Wisconsin. They saw at six days' jour- 
ney beyond the lake toward the southwest, 
a tribe composed of the remainder of the Hurons 
of the Tobacco Nation, compelled by the 
Iroquois to abandon Mackinaw and to bury 
themselves thus deep in the forests, that they 
could not be found by their enemies. The two 
traders told the tales they had heard of the 
ferocious Sioux, and of a great river upon which 
they dwelt — the great water of Nicolet. Thus 
a knowledge of the Mississippi began to dawn 
again upon the civilized world."* 

The narratives of the Indian captain and the 
two Frenchmen induced further exploration two 
years later when Father Rene Menard attempted 
to found a mission on Lake Superior, with eight 
Frenchmen and some Ottawas. He made his 
way in 1660 to what is now Keweenaw, Mich. 
He determined while there to visit some Hu- 
rons on the islands at the mouth of Green bay. 
He sent three of his companions to explore the 
way. They reached those islands by way of 
the Menominee river, returning to Keweenaw 
with discouraging accounts. But Menard re- 
solved to undertake the journey, starting from 
the lake with one white companion and some 
Hurons ; he perished, however, in the forest, in 
what manner is not known, his companion 
reaching the Green bay islands in safety. 
White men had floated upon the Menominee, 

* History Northern Wisconsin, p. 39, 

SO that the northeastern part of what is now 
Wisconsin, as wellas its interior by'Nicolet in 
1 634, had now been seen by civilized white manf. 


In August, 1665, Father Claude Allouez 
embarked on a mission to the country visited 
by Menard. Early in September he had 
reached the Sault de Ste. Marie, and on the 
first day of October, arrived in the bay of 
Chegoiraegon, at a village of Chippewas. 
Here he erected a chapel of bark, establishing 
the first mission in what is now Wisconsin 
to which he gave the name of the Holy Spirit. 
While Allouez had charge of this field, he 
either visited or saw, at Chegoimegon, scattered 
bands of Hurons and Ottawas ; also Pottawat- 
tamies from Lake Michigan, and the Sacs and 
Foxes, who lived upon the waters of Fox river 
of Green bay. He was likewise visited by the 
Illinois, and at the extremity of Lake Superior 
he met representatives of the Sioux. These 
declared they dwelt on the banks of the river 
"Messipi." Father James Marquette reached 
Chegoimegon in September, 1 669, and took 
charge of the mission of the Holy Spirit, 
Allouez proceeding to the Sault de Ste. Marie, 
intending to establish a mission on the shores 
of Green bay. He left the Sault Nov, :!, 1669, 
and on the 25th, reached a Pottawattamie cabin. 
On the 2d of December he founded upon the 
shore of Green bay the mission of St. Francis 
Xavier, the second one established by him 
within what are now the limits of Wisconsin. 
Here Allouez passed the winter. In April, 
1670, he founded another mission ; this one 
was upon Wolf river, a tributary of the Fox 
river of Green bay. Here the missionary 
labored among the Foxes, who had located upon 
that stream. The mission, the third in the 
present Wisconsin, he called St. Mark. 

In 1671 Father Louis Andre was sent to the 
missions of St. Francis Xavier and St. Mark, as 
a co-worker with Allouez. At what is now the 

t Bancroft, in his History of United States, evidently mis- 
takes the course pursued from Keweenaw, by Menard. 



village of DePere, Brown Co., "Wis., was located 
the central station of the mi.ssion of St. Francis 
Xavier. This mission included all the tribes 
inhabiting the vicinity of Green bay. A rude 
cha]iel, the third one within the present limits 
of Wisconsin, was soon erected. Allouez then 
left for other fields of labor ; but Andre re- 
mained here, working with zeal during the 
summer of 1671. However, during a temporary 
absence his chapel was burned, but he speedily 
erected another. Then his dwelling was de- 
stroyed, but although he erected another, it 
soon shared the same fate. He was at this 
time laboring among the Menomonees. When 
he finally left "the bay tribes" is not known. 
In 1076 Father Charles Albanel was stationed 
at wiiatis now DePere, where a new and better 
chapel was erected than the one left by Andre. 
In 1680 the mission was supplied by Father 
James Eryalran, who was recalled in 1687. 
When he left, his house and chapel were burned 
by the Winnebagoes. It was the end of the 
mission of St. Francis Xavier. The mission of 
the Holy Spirit was deserted by Father James 
Marquette in 1671. It was the end for 170 
years of a Konian Catholic mission at Che- 


In the year 1671, France took formal posses- 
sion of the whole country of the upper lakes. An 
agent, Dauniont de St. Liisson, was dispatched 
to tlie distant tribes, pi'oposing a congress of 
Indian Nations at the Falls of St. Mary, between 
Lake Huron and Lake Superior. The principal 
chiefs of the Wisconsin tribes were gathered 
there by Nicholas Perrot. When all were assem- 
bled, it was solemnly announced that the great 
northwest was placed under tlie protection of 
the French government. Tiiis was the begin- 
ning of French domination in what is now Wis- 
consin. Tile act of Dauniont de St. Lusson, at 
the Falls of St. Mary, in 1071, in establishing 
the right of France to tlie regions beyond Lake 
Michigan, not being regarded as sufficiently def- 
inite, Nicholas Perrot, in 1689, at the head of 

Green bay, again took possession of the country, 
extending the dominion of New France, not only 
over the territory of the upper Mississippi, but 
'•to other places more remote;" so that then, all 
that is now included within the boundaries of 
the State of Wisconsin (and much more) passed 
quietly into the possession of the French king. 

No fur-trader or missionary, no white man, 
had as yet reached the Mississippi above the 
mouth of the Illinois river. But the time for 
its exploration was at hand. Civilized men were 
now to behold its vast tribute rolling onward 
toward the Gulf of Mexico. These men were 
Louis Joliet and James Marquette. Jolietcame 
from Quebec, having been appointed by the gov- 
ernment to "discover" the Mississippi. He found 
Mar(juette on the north side of the straits of 
Mackinaw, laboring as a missionary among the 
Indians. The latter was solicited and readily 
agreed to accompany Joliet upon his expedition.* 
The outfit of the party was very simple: two 
birch-bark canoes and a supply of smoked meat 
and Indian corn. They had with them five 
white men. They began their voyage on the 
I7thday of May, 1673. Passing into Lake Mich- 
igan, they coasted along its northern shore, and 
paddled their canoes up Green bay and Fox 
river to the portage. They then crossed to the 
Wisconsin, down which they floated, until, on 
the 17th of June, they entered the Mississippi. 
After dropping down the river many miles, they 
returned by way of the Illinois and Lake Mich- 
igan to Green bay, where Marquette remained 
to recruit his strength, while Joliet returned to 
Quebec to make known the extent of his dis- 
coveries, j 

Fontenac's report of Joliet's return from a 
voyage to discover the South sea, dated Nov. 
14, 1674, is as follows: 

"Sieur Joliet, whom Monsieur Talon advised 

me, on my arrival from France, to dispatch for 

•That Count Fontenac, governor of New France, andM. 
Tolon, intenrtant, should have expressed a wish to Joliet 
that Father .Manjuette be invited to accompany him in his 
contemplated journey, is to be inferre*! from the words of 
the missionary; but nutliing inlheorderK i if lliese officers to Joliet 
is found to cfintirm the statement . 



the discovery of the South sea, has returned 
three months ago, and discovered some very 
fine countries, and a navigation so easy through 
the beautiful rivers he has found, that a person 
can go from Lake Ontario and Fort Fontenac 
in a bark to the Gulf of Mexico, there being 
only one carrying place, half a league in length, 
where Lake Ontario communicates with Lake 
Erie. These are projects which it will be pos- 
sible to effect when peace shall be firmly estab- 
lished and whenever it will please the king to 
prosecute these discoveries. Joliet has been 
within ten days' journey of the Gulf of Mexico, 
and believes that water communications could 
be found leading to the Vermilion and Cali- 
fornia seas, by means of the river that flows 
from the west [the Missouri] into the grand 
river [the Mississippi] that he discovered, 
which runs from north to south, and is as large 
as the St. Lawrence opposite Quebec. 

"I send you by my secretary the map he has 
made of it, and the observations he has been 
able to recollect, as he has lost all his minutes 
and journals in the shipwreck he suffered with- 
in sight of Montreal, where, after having com- 
pleted a voyage of twelve hundred leagues, he 
was near being drowned, and lost all his papers 
and a little Indian, whom he brought from 
those countries. These accidents have caused 
me great regret. Joliet left with the fathers at 
the Sault de Ste. Marie, in Lake Superior, copies 
of his journals; these we cannot get before next 
year. Tou will glean from them additional 
particulars of this discovery, in which he has 
very well acquitted himself." 

It is not known that the copies of Joliet's 
journals, mentioned in Frontenac's report, were 
delivered to the French government; but an ac- 
count of the voyage by Marquette was published 
in 16S1 by Thevenat. This fact has caused an 
undue importance to be attached to the name 
of the missionary in connection with the dis- 
covery of the Mississippi, and at the expense of 
tlie fame of Joliet.* 

•"The Count of Frontenae," says Shea (Wis Hist. CoU.,Vol. 
VII, page 119), "oa the Uth of November, [1671] in a (lis 

Explorations begun by Joliet were continued. 
La Salle, in '[619, with Father Louis Hennepin, 
coasted along the western shore of Lake Michi- 
gan, landing frequently. The return of Henry 
de Tonty, one of La Salle's party, down the 
same coast to Green bay, from the Illinois, fol- 
lowed in ]680. The same year. Father Henne- 
pin from the upper Mississippi, whither he had 
gone from the Illinois, made his way across 
what is now Wisconsin, by the Wisconsin and 
Fox rivers to Green bay.* 

He was accompanied by Daniel Greysolon 
Duluth, who,on his way down the Mississippi bad 
met Hennepin in September, IGTS. Duluth left 
Quebec to explore, under the authority of the 
governor of New France, the region of the up- 
per Mississippi, and establish relations of 
friendship with the Sioux and their kindred, 
the Assiniboines. In the summer of Idld he was 
in the Sioux country and early in the autumn 
of that year at the head of Lake Superior hold- 
ing an Indian council. In June, 1680, he set 
out from that point to continue his explorations. 
Going down the Mississippi he met with Henne- 
pin, as stated above,journeyed with him to the Je- 
suit station, near the head of Green bay, across 
what is now the State of Wisconsin. Follow- 
ing the voyages of Hennepin and Duluth was 
the one by Le Sueur, in 1683, from Lake Michi- 
gan to the Mississippi, ascending that river to 
the Sioux country in the region about St. An- 
thony, and his subsequent establishment, said 
to have been in 1693, at La Pointe, in the pres- 
ent Ashland Co., Wis. He was, at least, a 
voyageur stationed at Chegoimegon during that 
year. He continued to trade with the Sioux at 
intervals to the yenr l702.f 

patch to Colbert announced the successful issue of JoUet's 
expeclition;"butSheathen adds; "They had to wait forfullde- 
tailstill the aceountdrawn up by Father Marquette should be 
sent down, " as tboug:h such an account was really expected: 
but the fact was, as stated by Fontenac himself, that cople 
of Joliet's journals were what was looked for. 

*Hist. of Northern Wis., page 44. 




Nicholas Perrot was again in the northwest 
in 1684. He was commissioned to have chief 
commanci, not only "at tlie bay," but also upon 
the Mississippi, on the east side of which 
stream, at the foot of Lake Pepin, he erected 
a post. Here he spent the winter of 1685-6. 
Tiie next year he had returned to Green bay. 
He vibrated between Montreal and the west 
until 1697. In 1699 St. Cosme and his com- 
panions coasted along the west shore of Lake 
Michigan. Other explorations followed, but 
generally in the tracks of previous ones. 
Except at "the bay," there was not so long as 
tlie French had dominion over the northwest, 
a single post occupied for any length of time by 
regular soldiers. This post was called Fort St. 
Francis. There were other stockades. — one at 
La Pointe in 1726, and, as we have already seen 
one upon the Mississippi; but neither of these 
had cannon. At the commencement of the 
French and Indian War, all three had disap- 
peared. At the ending of hostilities, in 1760, 
there was not a single vestage of civilization 
within what are now the bounds of Wisconsin, 
except a few vagrant Frenchmen among the 
Indians; there was no post; no settlement, west 
of Lake Michigan. But before dismissing the 
subject of French supremacy in tlie northwest, 
it is proper to mention the hostility that for a 
number of years existed between the Fox Ind- 
ians and Frenchmen. 

In the year 1693, several fur-traders were 
plundered by the Fox Indians (located upon 
Fox river of Green bay), while on their way to 
the Sioux; the F'oxes alleging that the French- 
men were carrying arms to their ancient 
enemies. We hear no more of their hostility 
to the French until early in the spring of 1712, 
when they and some Mascoutins, laid a plan to 
burn the fort at Detroit. It was besieged for 
nineteen days by these savages, but the besiegers 
were obliged finally to retreat, as their provis- 
ions had become exhausted. They were pursued, 
however, anil near Lake St. Clair suffered a signal 
defeat at the bands of M. Dubisson and his 

Indian allies. The Marquis de Vaudreuil, now 
that the Foxes continued their hostilities, de- 
termined on a war of extermination against 
them. De Lourigny, a lieutenant, left Quebec 
in March, 1716. He made his way with alacrity, 
entering Green bay and Fox river, it is said, 
with a force of 800 French and Indians, en- 
countering the enemy in a pallisaded fort, 
which would have been soon reduced had not 
the Foxes asked for peace. Hostages were 
given, and Lourigny returned to Quebec. In 
1721 the war was renewed, and in 1728 another 
expedition was organized against these savages, 
commanded by Marchemd de Lignery. This 
officer proceeded by way of the Ottawa river of 
Canada and Lake Huron to Green bay, upon 
the noithern shore of which the Menominees, 
who had also become hostile were attacked and 
defeated. On the 24th of August, a Winnebago 
village on Fox river was reached by De Lignery 
with a force of 400 French and 750 Indians. 
They proceeded thence, up the river to the 
home of the Foxes, but did not succeed in meet- 
ing the enemy in force. The expedition wa« 
a signal failure. But the march of Neyon de 
Villiers, in 1730, against the Foxes, was more 
successful, resulting in their defeat. They 
suffered a loss of 200 killed of warriors, and 
three times as many women and children. Still 
the Foxes were not humbled. Another expedi- 
tion, this time under the direction of Capt. De 
Noyelle, marched against them in 1735. The 
result was not decisive. Many places have been 
designated upon Fox river as points where 
conflicts between the French and their allies, 
and the Foxes and their allies took place; but 
all such designations are traditionary and un- 
certain. The Sacs and Foxes finally became 
connected with the government of Canada, and 
during the French and Indian War were 
arrayed against the English. 


On the 9lh day of September, 1760, Governor 
Vaudreuil surrendered Canada to General Am- 
herst, of the British army, and^the supremacy 



over the northwest passed from France to 
Great Britain. But in what is now Wisconsin 
there was little be.sides savages to be affected by 
the change. The vagrant fur-trader represented 
all that there was of civilization west of Lake 
Michigan. Detroit was soon taken possession 
of; then Mackinaw, and finally, in 1761, a 
squad of English soldiers reached the head of 
Green bay, to garrison the tumble-down post, 
where now is Fort Howard, Brown Co., Wis. 
This was on October 12 of the year just men- 
tioned. Lieut. James Gorrell and one ser- 
geant, one corporal and fifteen privates con- 
stituted the "army of occupation" for the 
whole country west of Lake Mich.igan from 
this time to June 21, 1763, when the post 
was abandoned by the commandant on ac- 
count of the breaking out of Pontiae's War, 
and the capture of the fort at Macki- 
naw by the savages. The cause of the 
war was this : The Indian tribes saw the dan- 
ger which the downfall of the French interests 
in Canada was sure to bring them. They 
banded together under Pontiac to avert their 
ruin. The struggle was short but fierce — full 
of " scenes of tragic interest, with marvels of 
suffering and vicissitude, of heroism and en- 
durance ;" but the white man conquered. The 
moving incidents in this bloody drama were 
enacted to the eastward of what is now Wis- 
consin, coming no nearer than Mackinaw, but 
it resulted in the evacuation of its territory by 
British troops, who never after took possession 
of it, though they continued until 1796 a nominal 
military rule over it after Mackinaw was again 
occupied by them. 

No sooner had the soldiers under Gorrell 
left the bay than French traders seized upon 
the occasion to again make it headquarters for 
traffic in furs to the westward of Lake Michi- 
gan. Not that only, for a few determined to 
make it their permanent home. By the year 
1760 there were some families living in the de- 
cayed Fort Edward Augustus and opposite 
thereto, on the east side of Fox river, where 

they cultivated the soil in a small way and in 
an extremely primitive manner, living, now 
that peace was again restored, very comfort- 
alily. Of these French Canadians, no one can 
be considered as the pioneer — no one is entitled 
to the renown of having first led the way, be- 
coming, therefore the first settler of the State, 
much less the father and founder of Wisconsin. 
It was simply that "the bay," being, after Pon- 
tiae's war, occupied by Canadian French fur- 
traders, their station finally ripened into a per- 
manent settlement — the first in Wisconsin — the 
leading spirits of which were the two Lang- 
lades, Augustin and Charles, father and son. 
It had all the characteristics of a French settle- 
ment. Its growth was very slow. The indus- 
tries were few and simple. Besides the em- 
ployments of trading and transporting goods 
and peltries, the inhabitants engaged in hunt- 
ing and trapping. Attention was given to the 
cultivation of the soil only incidently. Gardens 
were cultivated to some extent for a supply of 
vegetables. Gradually, however, a few persons 
turned their chief attention to agriculture.* 

In 1783 four white persons occupied in a per- 
manent manner the tract of land where now is 
Prairie du Chien, in Crawford Co., Wis. They 
were soon followed by a number of persons 
who located there. These became permanent 
traders with the Indians. 

Besides the settlement at "the bay" and the 
one at Prairie du Chien some French traders 
were located where Milwaukee now is in 1795, 
but they could hardly be called settlers. Ten 
years before that date Laurence Barth lived at 
the portage between the Fox and Wisconsin 
rivers, now the site of Portage, Columbia Co., 
Wis., where he was engaged in the carrying 
trade. But his residence could not fairly be 
termed a settlement; so that when, in 1796, the 
English yielded possession of what is now Wis- 
consin to the Americans (a nominal one, how- 
ever,) there were really but two settlements — 
Green Bay and Prairie du Chien. 

*Hi8t. Northern Wis., p. 49. 




The Congress of the United States, by tlieir 
act of the 6tli day of September, 1780, recom- 
mended to the >('V( ral States in the Union hav- 
ing claims to waste and unapi)ropriated lands in 
the western country, a liberal cession tothegen- 
er.jl government of a portion of their respective 
claims for the common benefit of the Union. 
The claiming States were Connecticut, New 
York and Virginia, all under their colonial char- 
ters, and the last mentioned, in addition thereto, 
by right of conquest of the Illinois country. 
The region contended for lay to the northwest 
of the river Ohio. Virginia claimed territory 
westward to the Mississippi and northward to a 
somewhat indefinite extent. New York, and 
especially Connecticut, laid claim to territory 
streiching away to an unbounded extent west- 
waid, but not so far to the south as Virginia. 
The last mentioned State, by virtue of conquests 
largely her own, extended her jurisdiction over 
the Illinois settlements in 1778, and the year 
after, and erected into a county enough to in- 
clude all her conquests. But, what is now the 
State of Wisconsin, she certainly did not exor- 
cise dominion over. The three States finally 
ceded all llicir rights to the United States, leav- 
ing the general goveinmeiit absolute owner of 
th<> whole country, subject only to the rights, 
such as they were, of the Indian Nations who 
dwelt therein. 

Under a congressional ordinance, i>assed in 
1785, for ascertaining the mode of disposing of 
lands in the western territory, the geographer 
<il' the United States was directed to commence 
the survey of them immediately beyond the 
Ohio river, upon the plan which has ever since 
been followed by the general government, re- 
sulting in regular latitudinal and longitudinal 
lines being run, so as to circunisiMJbe every 640 
acres of land, not only in Wisconsin but in all 
the west, wherever these surveys have been" 
brought to completion. Two years subse(|uent 
to the passage of the first ordinance, was that of 

another and more famous one, providing for the 
government of the territory northwest of the 
river Ohio. This is familiarly known as the 
ordinance of 1787; and to this day it is a part of 
the fundamental law of Ohio, Indiana, Illinois, 
Michigan and Wisconsin, the five states since 
formed out of the region included within the 
limits affected by its provisions; — an act of Con- 
gress, passed in 1789, having adapted it to the 
constitution of the United States. But neither 
the treaty with Great Britain of 1783, nor the 
ordinances of Congress which followed, gave the 
United States anything more 'ban constructive 
possession of the whole of its western territory. 
The mother country, it is true, recognized the 
northern lakes as the boundary between her 
possessions and those of the now independent 
states, but finding an excuse in the fact of some 
of her merchants not being paid their claims as 
stipulated by the treaty of 1783, she retained 
possession of the whole northwest, including 
what is now Wisconsin, until 1700. 

By the ordinance of 1787, the United States 
in Congress assembled d«clared that the teni- 
tory northwest of the Ohio, should, for the j)Ui- 
])oses of tem])orary go\erninent, be one district, 
subject, however, to be divided into districts, as 
future circumstances might, in the opinion ol' 
Congress, make it ex|)edieiit. It was ordained, 
that a governor, secretary and three judges 
should be appointed for the territory; a general 
assembly was also provided for; and it was de- 
clared that religion, morality and knowledge, 
being necessary to good government and the 
happiness of mankin<l, schools and the means of 
education should forever l)e eneourageil. It 
was also ordained that tl)ei-e should be neither 
slavery nor involuntary servitude in the terri- 
tory, "otiierwise than in the punisliinent of 
crimes whereof the party shall |]a^■e been duly 
convicted." But this organic law was of cour.-'c 
nugatory over tiiat portion of the territory 0( - 
cnjiied by the British, and so continucil until 
the latter yielded possession, and in tact, for 
some time subsequent thereto. 


By the treaty agreed upon in l'I9i, between 
the United States and Great Britain, usually 
known as the Jay treaty, the evacuation of the 
posts and places occupied by British troops and 
garrisons in the northwest, was to take place on 
or before the Ist day of June, 1796. All set- 
tlers and traders within the precincts or juris- 
diction of these posts were to continue to enjoy 
unmolested, all their propeity of every kind, 
and to be protected therein. They were at full 
liberty to remain there, or to remove with all 
or any part of their effects; and it was left free 
to them to sell their lands, houses, or effects, or 
to retain the property thereof, at their discre- 
tion. Such of them as should continue to reside 
there were not to be compelled to become citi- 
zens of the United States, or to take any oath 
of allegiance to the government thereof; but 
were at full liberty so to do if they thought 
proper; and they were to make and declare their 
election within one year after the evacuation of 
the posts by the military. Persons continuing 
after the expiration of one year without having 
declared their intentions of remaining subjects 
of his Britannic majesty, were to be considered 
as having elected to become citizens of the 
United States. It is believed that no citizen of 
Wisconsin, either in the settlement at "the bay" 
or at Pi-airie du Chien made such a declaration 
but that all who remained, became thereby citi- 
izens of the new government. 

The Indian war in the west; which followed 
the Revolution, was brought to an end by the 
victorious arms of Gen. Anthony Wayne, upon 
the banks of the Maumee river, in what is now 
the State of Ohio, in the year 1794. The treaty 
of Greenville was entered into the next year 
with twelve western tribes of Indians, none of 
which resided in Wisconsin. Nevertheless, one 
of the provisions of the treaty was that, in con- 
sideration of the peace then established and 
the cessations and the relinquishments of lands 
made by the Indian tribes there represented, 
and to manifest the liberality of the United 
States, claims to all Indian lauds northward of 

the Ohio, eastward of the Mississippi, and west- 
ward and southward of the great lakes and the 
waters uniting them, were relinquished by the 
gencal government to the Indians having a 
right thereto. This included all the lands 
within the present boundaries of Wisconsin. 
The meaning of the relinquishment by the 
United States was that the Indian tribes who 
had a right to those lands were quietly to enjoy 
them, hunting, planting and dwelling thereon 
as long as they pleased, without any molesta- 
tion from the general government; but when 
any tribe should be disposed to sell its lands, 
or any part of them, they were to be sold only 
to the United States; and until such sale, the 
general government would protect all the In- 
dian tribes in the quiet enjoyment of their laiid 
against all citizens of the country, and against 
all other white persons who might intrude upon 
them. And if any citizen of the United States, 
or any other white person or persons should pre- 
sume to settle upon the lands then relinquished 
by the general government, such citizens or other 
persons should be out of the protection of the 
United States; and the Indian tribe on whose 
land the settlement might be made might drive 
off the settler, or punish him in such manner as 
they might think fit; and because such settle- 
ments made without the consent of the general 
government would be injurious to them as well 
as to the Indians, the United States should be 
at liberty to break them up, and remove and 
punish the settlers, as they might think proper. 
The titles of the Indians to their lands were 
thus acknowledged; and they were unquestion- 
able, because treaties made, or to be made 
with the various tribes had been declared by 
the constitution of the United States, the su- 
preme law of the land. But those titles could 
only be yielded to the general government. 
The principal question to be afterward deter- 
mined was, what lands were each tribe the 
rightful owners of. So long as Wisconsin 
formed a part of the northwestern territory, no 
treaty was made by the United States with any 



tribe or tribes occnpying any portion of the 
the country now lying within the limits of Wis- 

When, in l/f'H. Great Britain yielded posses- 
sion of the noiiliwest by withdrawing its garri- 
sons from the military posts therein, in pursu- 
ance of the Jay treaty of 1794, and the United 
States took formal possession thereof, the 
change in the political relations of the few set- 
tlers of Green Bay and Prairie du Chien was 
not felt by them. They had become the adop- 
ted citizens of the United States without any 
realization further than a bare knowledge of 
the fact. British authority had been so little 
exercised in their domestic affairs, that its with- 
dra-w'al was unnoticed, while that of the United 
States only reached them in name. Nearly all 
who were engaged in the fur trade were agents 
or employes of the British fur companies, and 
their relation to these remained unbroken. No 
intercourse for several years sprung up with 
the Americans. 

Under the ordinance of 1787, Arthur St. Clair 
wa.s appointed governor of the northwestern 
territory. At different periods counties were 
erected to include various portions of that 
region of country. By the governor's procla- 
mation of the 15th of August, 1796, one was 
formed to include the whole of the present 
area of northern Ohio, west of a point where 
the city of Cleveland is now located; also all of 
the present State of Indiana, north of a line 
drawn from Fort Wayne, "west-northerly to 
the southern part of Lake Michigan," the whole 
of what is now the State of Michigan, except 
the extreme northwest corner on Lake Superior; 
a small corner in the northeast part of the pres- 
ent State of Illinois, including Chicago; and so 
much of what is now Wisconsin as is watered 
by the streams flowing into Lake Michigan, 
which included an extensive portion of its area, 
taking in the territory now constituting many 
of its eastern and interior counties. To this 
county was given the name of Wayne. The 
citizens at the head of Greeu bay, from 179(3, 

until the 4th of July, 1800, were, therefore, res- 
idents of Wayne county, Northwest territory. 
But the western portion of the present State of 
Wisconsin, including all its area watered by 
streams flowing northward into Lake Superior, 
and westward and southwestward into the Mis- 
sissippi, was during those years attached to no 
county whatever. Within this part of the State 
was located, of course, the settlement of Prairie 
du Chien. 


After the fourth day of July, 1800, all that 
portion of the territory of theUniled States north- 
west of the Ohio river, lying to the westward 
of a line beginning upon that stream opposite 
the mouth of the Kentucky river and running 
thence to what is now Fort Recovery, in Mer- 
cer Co., Ohio, thence north until it intersected 
the territorial line between the United States 
and Canada, was for the purposes of temporary 
government, constituted a separate territory, 
called Indiana. Within its boundaries were 
included not only nearly all of what is now the 
State of Indiana, but the whole of the present 
State of Illinois, more than half of what is 
now Michigan, a considerable portion of the 
present State of Minnesota,and the whole of Wis- 
consin. The seat of government was estab- 
lished at "Saint Vincennes on the Wabash." 
now the city of Vincennes,Ind. Upon the form- 
ation of a State government for the State of 
Ohio, in 1802, all the country west of that State, 
but east of the eastern boundary of the territory 
of Indiana, was added to the latter ; so that 
then the area norlliwest of the Ohio river in- 
cluded but one State and one territory. After- 
ward, civil jurisdiction was exercised by the 
authorities of Indiana territory over the Green 
bay settlement, in a faint way, by the appoint 
ment, by Gov. William Henry Harrison, of 
Charles Reanme as the justice of the peace 
therein. Prairie du Chien was also recognized 
by the new territorial government by tlie 
appointment of two persons to a like oflice — 



Henry M. Fisher and a trader by the name of 

As American emigration was now rapidly 
dotting the wilderness to the westward of the 
State of Ohio wilh settlements, a treaty with 
some of the Indian tribes who claimed 
lands in that region extending northward into 
what is now Wisconsin, was a necessity, for as 
yet, none of these Nations had met any au- 
thorities of the United States in council. At 
the close of the contest between France and 
Great Britain so disastrous in North America to 
the former, the Sacs and Foxes readily gave in 
their adhesion to the latter, asking that English 
traders might be sent them. The two Nations, 
then about equally divided, numbered about 
Too warriors. Neither of the tribes 

took part in Poniiac's war, but they befriended 
the English. The Sacs had, by that date emi- 
grated some distance to the westward, while 
the Foxes, at least a portion of them, still re- 
mained upon the waters of the river of Green 
bay, which perpetuates their name. A few 
years later, however, and the Sacs were occu- 
pants of the upper Wisconsin also to a consid- 
erable extent below the portage between that 
stream and Fox river, where their chief town 
was h)eated. Further down the Wisconsin was 
the upper village of the Foxes, while their 
lower town was situated not far from its mouth, 
near the site of the present city of Prairie du 

Not long after Wise nsin had been taken 
possession of by the British, its northern por- 
tion, including all that part watered by the 
streams flowing north into Lake Superior, was 
the home of the Chippewas. The country 
around nearly the whole of Green bay, was the 
hun ing grounds of the Menomonees. The ter- 
ritory of Winnebago lake and Fox river was 
the seat of the Winnebagoes, while, as just 
stated, the Sacs and Foxes had the region of 
the Wisconsin river as their dwelling place. 
During the war of the Revolution, these 
two tribes continued the firm friends of the 

English, although not engaged in active hostili- 
ties again.«it the Americans. When finally Eng- 
land delivered up to the United States the pos- 
session of the northwest, the Sacs and Foxes had 
only a small portion of their territory in Wis- 
consin, and that in the extreme southwest. 
Their principal possession extended a consider- 
able distance to the south of the mouth of the 
Wisconsin, upon both sides of the Mississppi 

On the 3d of November, 1804, a treaty was 
held at St. Louis between the Sacs and Foxes 
and the United States. These tribes then ceded 
to the general government, a lage tract of land 
on both sides of the Mississippi, extending on 
the east from the mouth of the Illinois to the 
head of that river, thence to the Wisconsin. 
This grant embraces, in what is now Wisconsin, 
the whole of the present counties of Grant and 
La Fayette, and a large portion of those of Iowa 
and Green. It included the lead region. These 
tribes also claimed territory on the upper side 
of the Wisconsin, but they only granted away 
a tract two miles square above that stream, near 
its mouth, with the right of the United States 
to build a fort adjacent thereto. In considera- 
tion of the cession of these lands, the general 
government agreed to protect the two tribes in 
the quiet enjoyment of the residue of their 
possessions against its own citizens and all oth- 
ers who should intrude on them ; carrying out 
the stipulations to that effect embodied in the 
Greenville treaty, of 1795. Thus begun the 
quieting of the Indian title to the eminent do- 
main of Wisconsin by the United States, which 
was carried forward until the whole territory 
(except certain reservations to a few tribes) had 
been fairly purchased of the original proprie- 

So much of Indiana territory as lay to the 
north of a line drawn east from the southern 
bend of Lake Michigan to Lake Erie, and east 
of a line drawn from the same tend through 
the middle of the first mentioned lake to its 
northern extremity, thence due north to the 



northern boundary of the United States, was, 
for the purposes of temporary government, on 
the 30th of June, 1805, constituted a separate 
and distinct territory, called Michigan. This 
new territory did not include witliin its boun- 
daries any part of Wisconsin as at present de- 


On the 3d of February, 1809, an act of Con- 
gress, entitled an act for dividing the Indiana 
territory into two separate governments, was 
approved by the President and became a law. 
It provided that from and after the 1st day of 
March thereafter, all that part of the Indiana 
territory lying west of the Wabash river and 
a direct line drawn from that stream and "Post 
Vincennes" due north to the territorial line be- 
tween the United States and Canada, should, 
for the purpose of temporary government, con- 
stitute a separate territory and be called Illinois, 
with the seat of government at Kaskaskia, on 
the Mississippi river, until it should be other- 
wise ordered. By this law, all of what is now 
Wisconsin was transferred from Indiana terri- 
tory to that of Illinois, except that portion lying 
east of the meridian line drawn through Vin- 
cennes. This fraction included nearly the 
whole area between Green bay and Lake Mi- 
chigan and remained a part of the territory of 
Indiana. When, in 1816, Indiana became a 
State, this narrow strip, as it was neither a por- 
tion of Michigan territory on the east or Illinois 
territory on the west, remained without any 
organization until 1818. In that year it became 
a part of Michigan territory. 

In 1809, an effort was made by John Jacob 
Astor, of New York city, to extend the Ameri- 
can fur-trade by way of the lakes to Wiscon- 
sin and parts beyond; but the monopoly 
of the British fur companies was too 
strong. He could only effect his object by uni- 
ting with the northwest company of Montreal, 
in I8I1, to form out of the American and Mack- 
inaw companies, a new one, to be known as the 
Southwest company, of which Astor owned a 

half intererest, with the arrangement that, after 
five years, it was to pass into his hands alto- 
gether, being restricted in its operations to the 
territories of the United States. This company 
was snsi>ended by the war with Great Britain, 
which ininiedintely followed. At the close of 
hostilities, British traders were prohibited by 
law from pursuing their calling within the 
jurisdiction of the United States. The result 
was the southwest company closed up its affairs, 
and the American fur company re-appeared un- 
der the exclusive control of Astor, who estab- 
lished his western headquarters at Mackinaw, 
operating extensively in what is now Wiscon- 
sin, especially at La Pointe, upon Lake Sujierior, 
where large warehouses were erected; a siock- 
ade built, lands cleared, farms opened, dwell- 
ings and stores put up. But English traders 
evaded the law by sen .ing their goods into the 
United States in the name of American clerks 
in their employ. These goods being of supe- 
rior quality to those furnished by Astor, they 
continued to command the Indian trade to a 
large extent. It was only when the American 
prince of fur-traders was enabled to import 
goods to New York of equal quality and send 
them by way of the lakes, that he could success- 
fully compete with his rivals and in the end 
drive them from the fieM. 

At the commencement of the war with (iieat 
Britain the few settlers at Green Bay and 
Prairie du Chien depended largely u])i m the 
fur trade for their living, monojiolized, as we 
have seen, at that period, by British traders. 
At the beginning of hostilities this depeiidency 
was proniptlj' secured to the latter by the ca])- 
lure, from the Americans, of the post at Macki- 
naw. Naturally enough most of the people of 
Wisconsin, limited in number as they were, ad- 
hered to the English during the continuance of 
hostilities. As to the Indian tribes, witliin 
what are now the limits of the State, it may be 
said that, in a measure, they, too, all arraye<l 
themselves on the side of Great Britain. The 
Menomonees and Winnebagoes took part in the 



capture of Mackinaw, and subsequently in other 
enterprises against the Americans. Indeed, 
all the tribes in the northwest were firmly at- 
tached to the English by reciprocal interest Iti 
the fur trade, from which ihey derived their 
supplies. Great Britain had never ceased since 
the Revolution to foster their friendship by the 
liberal distribution annually of presents; hence, 
they were ready when the War of 1812-15 was 
inaugurated to take up the hatchet against the 
Americans. Just before hostilities began, the 
English traders were especially active in excit- 
ing the Indians against the Americans, more es- 
pecially against American traders. Robert 
Dickson, a resident of Prairie du Chien, an 
Englishman by birth, was among the foremost 
in stirring up the animosity of the savages. 
Soon after the declaration of war he collected a 
body of Indians at Green Bay for the purpose 
of rendering assistance to the British forces in 
their operations on the lakes and in the north- 
west; they were principally Pottawattamies, 
Kickapoos, Ottawas, Winnebagoes and Sacs, 
the last mentioned being Black Hawk's band. 
This chief was made commander-in-chief of the 
savages there assembled, by Dickinson, and 
sent to join the British army under Proctor. 

The English early succeeded in securing the 
Wisconsin Indian tribes as their allies in this 
war; and having taken Mackinaw in Jul}', 1812, 
they were, virtually, put in possession of what 
is now the eastern portion of the State. Early 
in 1814, the government authorities of the 
United States caused to be fitted out at St. 
Louis a large boat, having on board all tiie men 
that could be mustered and spared from the 
lower country, and sent up the Mississippi to 
protect the upper region and the few settlers 
therein. The troops landed at Prairie du Chien, 
and immediately proceeded to fortify. Not 
long after. Col. McKay, of the British army, 
crossing the country by course of the Fox and 
Wisconsin rivers, with over 500 British and In- 
dians, received the surrender of the whole 
orce. The ofiicers and men were paroled and 

sent down the river. This was the only battle 
fought upon Wisconsin soil during the last war 
with England. The post at Prairie du Chien 
was left in command of a captain with two 
companies from Mackinaw. He remained there 
until after the peace of 1815, when the place 
was evacuated by the British. 

On the 3d of August, 1814, an expedition of 
about 300 men. under command of Maj. Zachary 
Taylor, left St. Louis in boats for the upper 
Mississippi. When they arrived at Rock Is- 
land they found the British there, apparently 
in force, with a battery on shore commanding 
the river. A severe fight took place, but after 
sustaining a loss of several killed and wounded 
the Americans returned to St. Louis. The 
British afterwards left Rock Island, and upon 
the signing of the treaty of peace by the envoys 
of the two governments, and the ratification of 
the same, the whole northwest, including Fort 
McKay at Prairie du Chien, was evacuated by 
British forces. 

When it was made known to the Indian 
tribes of the west some of them upon the Miss- 
issippi wei-e willing and eager to make treaties 
with the United States. A lucrative trade 
sprung up between the merchants of St. Louis 
and the traders and Indians up that river. 
Goods were periodically sent up the river to 
traders, who in turn transmitted in payment, by 
the same boats, furs and lead. But, generally, 
the savages hovered sullenly around the now 
rapidly increasing settlements in the territoiies 
of Michigan and Illinois, and the general gov- 
ernment began to consider in earnest how the 
influence of British intercourse might be 
checked, for the savages were still encouraged 
by English traders in their unfriendly disposi- 
tion and supplied with arms by them. Accord- 
ingly, in the winter after the close of the war. 
Congress prohibited foreign trade in the ter- 
ritory of the United Slates; and, in the summer 
following, steps were taken to make this policy 
effectual, by establishing a chain of military 
posts near the Canadian frontier and upon the 



principal lines of communication thence into the 
interior. posts were to be occupied by 
Indian agents, with factories, or government 
stores, de.signed to supply the place of the pro- 
hibited traffic. 

On the 2l8t of June, 1816, United States 
troops took possession of the fort at Prairie du 
Chien. During the next month three schooners 
entered Fox river of Green bay, under the 
American flag, displaying to the astonished 
inhabitants of tiie small settlement upon that 
stream near its mouth, their decks covered with 
government troops. They were under command 
of Col. John Miller, of the Third United States 
Infantry, whose purpose was the establishment 
of a garrison near the head of the bay. The 
rendezvous of the troops was upon the east side 
some distance up the river, and was called 
"Camp Smith." At the end of two months the 
garrison was established in barracks enclosed 
with a stockade. Camp Smith was occupied 
until 1820, when a more substantial struc- 
ture was erected on the west side of the 
stream near its mouth, and named Fort Howard. 

The settlement at Green Bay was made up at 
the close of the war, of about forty or fifty 
French Canadians. The inhabitants (as at 
Prairie du Chien) were now for a time the 
subjects of military rule. "They received the 
advent of the troops in a hospitable spirit, and 
acquiesced in the authority asserted over them, 
with little evidence of discontent, mainfaiiiiiig 
a character for docility and freedom from tur- 
bulence of disposition remarkably in contrast 
with their surroundings. Military authority 
was, in the main, exerteii for the preservation 
of order." There was no civil authority worth 
speaking of. It was at a period when important 
changes were taking place. That sonielinu-s 
military authority, under such circumstances, 
should iiave been exercised in an arbitrary 
manner, is not at all a matter of surprise. "The 
conduct of the soldiery was also sometimes 
troublesome and offensive ; as a rule, how- 
ever, harmonious relations existed between 

them and the citizens. The abuses were only 
such as were unavoidable, in the absence of any 
lawful restraint on the one hand, or means of 
redress on the other." This state of affairs did 
not long continue, as initiatory steps were not 
long after taken to extend over the community 
both here and at Prairie du Chien the pro- 
tection of civil government. 

The Indians of Wisconsin, upon the arrival 
of United States troops at Prairie du Chien and 
Green ba>, gave evident signs of a disposition 
to remain friendly, although some thought the 
advent of soldiers an intrusion. An Iiulian 
agency under John Boyer and a United States 
factory, well supplied with goods, with Major 
Matthew Irwin at its head, were soon established 
at the bay ; a factory at Prairie du Cliien, 
under charge of John W. Johnson, was also 
started. The Menemonee and Winnebago tribes, 
the former upon Green bay, the latter upon the 
Fox and Wisconsin rivers, were now brought 
into nearer relations with the United Stales. 


Upon the admission of Illinois into the 
Union, in 1818, all "the territory of the United 
States, northwest of the River Ohio," lying west 
of Michigan territory and north of the States of 
Indiana and Illinois, was attached to and made 
a part of Michigan territory; by which act the 
whole of the present State of Wisconsin came 
under the jurisdiction of the latter. At the 
close of the last war with Great Britian, Wis- 
consin began in earnest to be occui>ie<l by 
Americans. But the latter were still ftw in 
number when the country west of Lake Michi- 
gan was attached to Michigan territory. Now, 
however, that tlie laws of the United States were 
in reality extended over them, they to 
feel as though they were not altogether beyond 
the protection of a government of their own, 
notwithstanding they were surrounded by 
Indian tribes. On the 20th of Cctober, 1818, 
the governor of the territory erected by ])iocia- 
mation three counties lying in whole or in part 
in what is now Wisconsin— Brown, Crawford 



and Michilimackinac. The county of Michili- 
mackinac not only included all of the present 
State of Wisconsin lyinsr nortli of a line drawn 
due west from near the head of tiie Little Noquet 
bay, but territory east and west of it, so as to 
reach from Lake Huron to the Mississippi river. 
Its county seat was established "at the Borough 
of Michilimackinac." The wliole area in Michi- 
gan territory south of the county of Michili- 
mackinac, and west of Lake Michigan formed the 
two counties of Brown and Crawford; the 
former to include the area east of a line drawn 
due nortli and south through tlic middle of the 
portage between the Fox river of Green bay and 
the Wisconsin; the latter to include the whole 
region west of that line. Prairie du Chien was 
designated as the county seat of Crawford; 
Green Bay, of Brown county. On the 22d of 
December, 1820, a county named Chippewa was 
formed from the northern portions of Michili- 
mackinac, including the southern shores of Lake 
Superior throughout its entire length, and ex- 
tending from tlie straits leading from that lake 
into Lake Huron, west to the western boumlary 
line oS ^Michigan territory, with the county seat 
"at such point in the vicinity of the Snult de 
Ste. Marie, as a majority of the county com- 
missio-ers to l)i- ap[)oiTited shall designate." 
Embraced within this county — its southern 
boundary being the parallel of 46 degrees 81 min- 
utes north latitude- was all the territory of the 
]jresent State of Wisconsin now bordering on 
Lake Superior. Brown and Crawford counties 
were .soon organized, the offices being filled by 
.■ippointTuents of the governor. County courts 
were also established, to which appeals were 
taken frinn justices of the peace. In January, 
i-S23, a distiict court was established by an act 
of Congress, for the counties last mentioned, 
including also Michilimackinac. One term 
iluriiig the year was held in eacli county. James 
Duatie Doty was the judge of this court to May, 
18;!2, when he was succeeded by David Irvin. 

1 he United States were not unmindful of her 
citizens to the westward of Lake Michigan, in 

several other important matters. Indian agencies 
were established; treaties were held with some 
of the native tribes, and land claims of white 
settlers at Green Bay and Prairie du Chien 
adjusted. Postmasters were also appointed at 
these two places. 

In 1825 and the two following years, a general 
attention was called to the lead mines in what 
is now the southwestern portion of the State. 
Different places therein were settled with 
American miners. In June, 1827, the Winne- 
bago Indians became hostile; this caused the 
militia of Prairie du Chien to be called out. 
United States troops ascended the Wisconsin 
river to quell the disturbance. There they were 
joined by Illinois volunteers, and the Winneba- 
goes awed into submission. Fort Winnebago 
was thereupon erected by the general govern- 
ment at the portage, near the present site of 
Portage, Columbia Co., Wis. A treaty with the 
Indians followed, and there was no more trouble 
because of mining operations in the "lead 
region." On the 9th of October, 1829, a county 
was formed of all that part of Crawford lying 
south of the Wisconsin, and named Iowa. In 
1831 the United States purchased of the Men- 
omonees all their lands east of Green bay, 
Winnebago lake and the Fox and Milwaukee 
rivers. The general government, before this 
date, had, at several periods, held treaties with 
the Sac and Fox Indians. And the time had 
now come when the two tribes were to leave 
the eastern for the western side of the Misssi- 
sippi river; but a band headed by Black Hawk 
refused to leave their village near Rock Island, 
111. They contended that they h;id not sold 
their town to the United States; and upon their 
return early in 1831, from a hunt across the 
Mississippi, finding their village and fields in 
possession of the whites, they determined to 
repossess their homes at all hazards. Tliis was 
looked upon, or called, an encroachment by the 
settlers; so the governor of Illinois took the 
responsibility of declaring the State invaded, 
and asked the United States to drive the refrac- 



.tory Indians beyond the Mississippi. The 
result was, the Indian village was destroyed by 
Illinois volunteers. This and the threatened 
advance across the river by the United States 
commander, brought Black Hawk and his fol- 
lowers to terras. They sued for peace — agree- 
ing to remain forever on the west side of the 
Mississippi. But this truce was of short dura- 

Early in the spring of 1832, Black Hawk hav- 
ing assembled his forces on the Mississippi in 
the vicinity of the locality where Fort Madison 
had stood, crossed that stream and ascended 
Rock river. 'Ihis was the signal for war. The 
governor of Illinois made a call for volunteers, 
anil in a brief space of time 1,800 had 
a.ssenibled at Beardstown, Cass county. They 
maiched for the mouth of Rock river, where a 
council of war was held by their officers and 
Brigadier-General Henry Atkinson, of the reg- 
ular forces. The Indians were sent word by 
General Atkinson that they must return and re- 
cross the Mississippi or they would be driven 
back by force. When the attempt was made to 
compel them to go back a collision occurred 
between the Illinois militia and Black Hawk's 
braves, resulting in the discomfiture of the 
former with the loss of eleven men. Soon af- 
terward the volunteers were disdiarged, and 
the first campaign of Black Hawk's War was at 
an end This was in May, 1832. In June fol- 
lowing a new force had been raised and put 
under the command of General Atkinson, who 
commenced his march up Rock river. Before 
this there had been a general "forting" in the 
lead region, in Illinois, and including the whole 
country in what is now Southwest Wisconsin, 
notwithstanding which a number of settlers 
had been killed by the savages, mostly in Illi- 
nois. Squads of volunteers, in two or three in- 
stances, had encountered the Indians, and in 
one with entire succes.s — upon the Pecatonica, 
in the present Lafayette Co., Wis. — every sav- 
age (and there were seventeen of them) being 
killed. The loss of the volunteers was three 

killed and wounded. Atkinson's march up 
Rock river was attended with some skirmish- 
ing, when, being informed that Black Hawk 
and his force were at Lake Koshkonong, in the 
southwest corner of what is now JeflEorson Co., 
Wis., he itnmediately moved thither with a 
portion of his army, where the whole force was 
ordered to concentrate. But the Sac chief, 
with his people, had flown. Colonels Henry 
Dodge and James D. Henry, with the forces 
under them, discovered the trail of the savages, 
leading in the direction of Wisconsin river. It 
was evident that the retreating force was large, 
and that it had but recently passed. The pur- 
suing troops hastened their march. On the 
21st of July, 18T2, they arrived at the hills 
which skirt the left bank of that stream, in 
what is now Roxbury town (township), Dane 
county. Here was Black Hawk's whole force, 
including women and children, the aged and 
infirm, hastening by every effort to escape 
across the river. But that this might now be 
effected it became necessary for that chief to 
make a firm stand, to cover the retreat. The 
Indians were in the bottom lands when the ]>ur- 
suing whites made their appearance upon the 
heiglits in their rear. Colonel Dodge occupied 
the front and sustained the first attack of the 
Indians. He was soon joined by Henry with 
his force, when they obtained a complete vic- 
tory. The action commenced about 5 o'clock 
in the afternoon and ended at sunset. The 
enemy sustained a loss, it is said, of about sixty 
killed and a large number wounded.* The loss 
of the Americans was one killed and eight 
wounded. During the following night Black 
Hawk made his escape down the Wisconsin. 
He was pursued and finally brought to a stand 
on the Mississippi near the mouth of the Bad 
Axe, on the western boundary of what is now 
Vernon Co., Wis.; and on the 2d of August 
attacked on all sides by the Americans, who 
soon obtained a complete victory. Black Hawk 
esca))ed, but was soon after captured. This 
ended the war. 

*lllack thiwk ^ivrQ ii \ ri-y rtlfforoitt n<'ooniit ap to hi:^ 
Inss "In Ibis skiiniisli." snys lie, "with Itfty braves I de- 
fcn'UHl and Hcconiplisht-d my i)U«sago over thi* Wisconaiii 
with a loss of nuly sijt men." 



The survey of public lands to which the In- 
dian title had been extinguished; the erection 
of Milwaukee county from the southern part of 
Brown; the changing of the eastern boundary 
of Fowa county to correspond with the western 
one of Milwaukee county; the attaching, for 
judicial purposes, of all the country west of the 
Mississippi river and north of the State of Mis- 
souri to the territory of Michigan in 1834, and 
the division of it into the two counties of Des 
Moines and Dubuque, were the important events 
following the close of the Black Hawk war. 
The prospective admission of the State of 

Michigan into the Union, to include all that 
part of the territory lying east of Lake Michi- 
gan, caused, on the 1st of January, 1836, a ses- 
sion (the first one) of the seventh territorial 
council, to legislate for so much of the terri- 
tory as lay to the westward of that lake, to be 
held at Green Bay, when a memorial was 

adopted, asking Congress for the formation of 
a new territory, to include all of Michigan ter- 
ritory not to be admitted as a State. This re- 
([uest, it will now be seen, was soon complied 
with by the National Legislature. 



The Territory of Wisconsin* was erected by 
act of Congress of April 20, 1836, to take effect 
from and after the 3d day of July following. 

♦Wisconsin takes its name from its principal river, 
which drains an extensive portion of its surface. It rises in 
Ijake Vieux Desert (which is partly in Michigan and partly 
In Wisconsin), flows generally a south course to Portage in 
what is now Columhia county, where it turns to the south- 
we-t, and after a further course of 118 miles, with a rapid 
cuiTCnt. reaches the Mississippi river, four miles below Prai- 
rie du Chien. Its entire length is about iriO miles, descending, 
in that distance, a little more than 1,000 feet. Along the 
lower portion of the stream are the high lands, or river hills. 
Some of these hills present high and precipitous faces to- 
ward the water. Others terminate ia knobs. The name is 
supposed to have been taken from this feature: the word 
being derived from ?7ii-s-i.s, great, and ns-sin, a stone or rock. 

Compare Shea's Discovoil fold Explnratinn of the MissiJi- 
sinpi. pp. 6 (note* and 2fi8; Foster's Mississippi VaUeu, p. 2 
motel; Schoolcraft's Tliirty Tears with the Indian Tribe)!, p. 
2'nand note. 

Two definitions of the word are current — as widel.v differ- 
ing from each other as from the one just given. (See Wis. 
Hist. Soc. Coll., Vol. I , p. Ill, and (Vebster's Die, Una- 
bi-idged. p. 16-32.) The first— "the gathering of the waters"— 
has no corresponding words in Algonquin at all resembliug 
the name; the same may be said of the second— "wild rush- 
ing channel." (See Otchipwe Die. of Kev. P. Baragii. 

Since first used by the French the word ' 'Wisconsin" has 
'inderg(^ne considerable change. On the map by Joliet, re- 
cently brought to light by Gravier, it is given as "Miskon- 
«'ng " In Marquette's journal, published by Thevenot. in 
Paris. 1681. it is noted as the "Meskousing." It appeared 
ihereforthe first time in print. Hennepin, in 1683, wrote 
••Qnisconsin" and "Misconsin;" Charlevoix. 1743. "Ouis- 
consin:" Carver. 1766, "Ouisconsin" (English— "Wiscou- 
sin"); since which last mentioned date the orthography has 
been uniform.— Butterfleld's IHacmx/ry of Wi« Nurthwest in 

It was made to include all that part of the late 
Michigan territory described within boundaries 
"commencing at the northeast corner of the 
State of Illinois, running thence through the 
middle of Lake Michigan to a point opposite 
the main channel of Green bay; thence tlirough 
that channel and the bay to the mouth of the 
Menomonee river; thence up that stream to its 
head, which is nearest the lake of the Desert; 
thence to the middle of that lake; thence down 
the Montreal river to its mouth; thence with a 
direct line across Lake Superior to where the 
territorial line of the United States! ast touches 
the lake northwest; thence on the north, witli 
the territorial line, to the White Earth river; 
on the west by a line drawn down the middle 
of the main cliannel of that stream to the Mis- 
souri river, and down the middle of the main 
channel of the last mentioned stream to thf 
northwest corner of the State of Missouri; and 
thence with the boundaries of the States of 
Missouri and Illinois, as already fixed by act of 



Congress, to the place or point of beginning." 
Its counties were Brown, Milwaukee, Iowa, 
Crawford, Dubuque and Des Moines, witli a 
portion of Chippewa and Michiliraackinac un- 
organized. Henry Dodge was commissioned 
governor April :S0, li^-SC; Charles Dunn, chief 
justice, and David Trvin and William C. Frazer 
associate justices; by Andrew Jackson, Presi- 
dent of the United States. The following were 
the secretaries, attorneys and marshals, with 
the dates of their commissions who held 
office while the territory was in existence : 


John S. Horner, May 0, 1836; William B. 
Slaughter, Feb. 16, 1837; Francis I. Dunn, Jan. 
25, 1841; Alexander P. Field, April 23, 1841; 
George Floyd, Oct. 30. 1843; John Catlin, Feb. 
24, 1846. 


W. W. Chapman, May 6, 1836; Moses M. 
Strong, July 5, 1838; Thomas W. Sutherland, 
April 27, 1841; William P. Lynde, July 14, 



Francis Gehon, May 6, 1836; Edward James, 
June 19, 1838; Daniel Ilugunin, March 15, 
1841; Charles M. Prevost, Aug. 31, 1844; John 
S. Rockwell, March 14, 1845. 

The first important measure to he looked af- 
ter by Governor Dodge upon his assuming, in 
the spring of 1836, the executive chair of the 
territory was the organization of the territorial 
Legislature. A census showed the following 
population east of the Mississippi : Milwaukee 
county, 2,893; Brown county, 2,706; Crawford 
county, 850; Iowa county. 5,234. Total, 1 1,683. 
The enumeration for the two counties west of 
the Mississippi was — Des Moities, 6,257; Du- 
buque, 4,274. Total, 10,531. The population, 
therefore, of both sides of the river aggregated 
22,214. The legislative apportionment, made 
by the governor, gave to the territory thirteen 
councilmen and twenty-six representatives. 
These, of course, were to be elected by the peo- 
ple. The election was held Oct. 10, 1836. 

Belmont, in the present county of Lafayette, 
Wis., was appointed as the place for the meet- 
ing of the Legislature, where the first session 
began October 25. A quorum of each house 
was in attendance. Henry S. Baird, of Green 
Bay, wai elected president of the council, and 
Peter H. Engle speaker of the house. 

The following persons served as presidents 
of the council while Wisconsin was a territory : 

First session, first Legislative Assembly, 
Henry S. Baird, Brown county. 

Second session, first Legislative Assembly, 
Arthur R. Ingraham, Des Moines county. 

Special session, first Legislative Assembly, 
Arthur R. Ingraham, Des Moines county. 

First session, second Legislative Assembly, 
William Bullen, Racine county. 

Second session, second Legislative Assembly, 
James Collins, Iowa county. 

Third session, second Legislative Assembly, 
James Collins, Iowa county. 

Fourth (extra) session, second Legislative 
Assembly, William A. Prentiss, Milwaukee 

First session, third Legislative Assembly. 
James Maxwell, W^alworth county. 

Second session, third Legislative Assembly, 
James Collins, Iowa county. 

First session, fourth Legislative Assembly, 
Moses M. Strong, Iowa county. 

Second session, fourth Legislative Assembly, 
Marshal M. Strong, Racine county. 

Third session, fourth Legislative Assembly, 
Moses M. Strong, Iowa county. 

Fourth session, fourth Legislative Assembly, 
Nelson Dewey, Grant county. 

First session, fifth Legislative Assembly, 
Horatio N. Wells, Milwaukee county. 

>'pecial session, fifth Legislative Assembly, 
Horatio N. Wells, Milwaukee county. 

Second session, fifth Legislative Assembly, 
Horatio N. Wells, Milwaukee county. 

The following persons served as speakers of 
the House during llie t-.intinu.iiioe i>f Wisi-ou- 
sin territorv : 



First session, first Legislative Assembly, 
Peter H. Engle, Dubuque county. 

Sec.ontl session, first Legislative Assembly, 
Isaac Leffler, Des Moines county. 

Special session, first Legislative Assembly, 
William B. Sheldon, Milwaukee county. 

First session, second Legislative Assembly, 
John W. Blackstone, Iowa county. 

Second session, second Legislative Assembly, 
Lucius I. Barber, Milwaukee county. 

Third session, second Legislalive Assembly, 
Edward V. Whiton, Rock county. 

Fourth (extra) session, second Legislative 
Assembly, Nelson Dewey, Grant county. 

First session, third Legislative Assembly, 
David Newland, Iowa county. 

Second session, third Legislative Assembly 
David Newland, Iowa county. 

First session, fourth Legislative Assembly, 
Albert G. Ellis, Portage county. 

Second session, fourth Legislative Assembly, 
George H. Walker, Milwaukee county. 

Third session, fourth Lesjislative Assembly, 
George II. Walker, Milwaukee counly. 

Fourth session, fourth Legislative Assembly, 
Mason C. Darling, Fond du Lac county. 

First session, fifth Legislative Assembly, 
William Shew, Milwaukee county. 

Special session, fifth Legislative Assembly, 
Isaac P. Walker, Milwaukee county. 

Second session, fifth Legislative Assembly, 
Timothy i3urns, Iowa county. 

Each of the tiiree branches of the infant gov- 
ernment was now (October, 1836) in working 
order, except that it remained for the Legisla- 
tive Assembly to divide the territory into three 
judicial districts, the number required bv the 
organic act, and make an assignment of the 
judges. This was speedily done. Crawford 
and Iowa constituted the first district, to which 
the chief justice was assigned; Dubuque and 
Dc'S Moines the second, to which judge Irvin 
was assigned; and Judge Frazer to the third, 
consisting of Milwaukee and Brown counties. 
The principal matters engaging the attention 

of the legislators were the permanent location 
of the capitol, the erection of new counties and 
the location of county seats. Madison was fixed 
upon as the seat of government; and nine coun- 
ties were erected east of the Mississippi: Wal 
worth, Racine, Jefferson, Dane, Dodge, Wash- 
ington, Rock, Grant and Green. West of the 
river six counties were set off: Lee, Van 
Buren, Henry, Louisa, Muscatine and Cook. 
The Legislature adjourned sine die, Dec. 9, 
1886. Tiie first term of the supreme court was 
held at Belmont on the the 8th day of Decem- 
ber, of that year. The appointment of a clerk, 
crier and reporter, and the admission of several 
attorneys to practice, completed the business of 
the first term. The following persons served 
as clerks while Wisconsin was a territory: 

John Catlin, appointed at December term, 
1836; Simeon Mills, appointed at Jul)' term, 
18.39; La Fayette Kellogg, appointed at July 
term, 1840. Gov. Dodge, appointed Dec. 8, 18.36, 
Henry S. Baird, as attorney general. His 
successors were as follows: 

Horatio N. Wells, appointed by Gov. Dodge, 
March :30, 1839; Mortimer M. Jackson, ap- 
pointed by Gov. Dodge, Jan. 26, 1842; William 
Pitt Lynde, appointed by Gov. Talimage, Feb. 
22, 1845; A. Hyatt Smith, appointed by Gov. 
Dodge Aug. 4, 1845. Upon the organization of 
the territory in 1830, it was necessary that it 
should be represented in the National Legisla- 
ture; so on the day of the election of the terri- 
torial Legislature, George W. Jones, of Iowa 
county, was chosen a delegate in Congress. His 
successors were: 

James Duane Doty, elected Sept. 10, 1838; 
James Duane Doty, elected Aug. 5, 1840; Henry 
Dodge, elected Sept. 21, 1841; Henry Dodge, 
elected Sept. 25, 1843; Morgan L. Martin, 
elected Sept. 22, 1845; John H. Tweedy, 
elected Sept. 6, 1847. 

At the close of the year 1836, there was no 
land in market east of the Mississippi, except a 
narrow strip along the shore of Lake Michigan, 
and in the vicinity of Green bay. The residue 



of tlie country south and east of the Wisconsin 
and Fox rivers was open only to pre-emption by 
actual settlers. Tiie Indian tribes still claimed 
a larye portion ot the lands. On the north were 
located the Chippewas. The soutliern limits 
of their possessions were defined by a line drawn 
from a point on that stream in about latitude 
46 degrees 31 minutes in a southeasterly direc- 
tion to the head of Lake St. Croix; thence in 
the same general direction to what is now 
Stevens Point, in tlie present Portage Co., W's.; 
thence nearly east to Wolf river; and thence in 
a direction nearly northeast to the Menomonee 
river. Between the Wisconsin river and the 
Mississippi, and extending north to the south 
line of the Chippewas was the territory of th» 
Winnehagoes. Eastof the Winnebagocs in the 
country north of the Fox river of Green bay 
were located the Menomonees, their lands ex- 
tending to Wolf river. Sucli was the general 
outline of Indian occupancy in Wisconsin terri- 
tory, east of the Mississippi, at its organization. 
A portion of the country east of Wolf river and 
north of Green bay and the Fox rivei'; tiie 
wliole of the area lying south of Green bay, 
Fox river and the Wisconsin, ctmstituted the 
extent of country over which the Indians Iiad 
no claim. In this region, as we have seen, was 
a populatian of about 12,000, it was made np 
of the scattered settlers at tiie lead mines; 
the military establishments, (I'ort Crawford, 
Fort Winnebago and Fort Howard), and settli- 
ments at or near them; and the village of 
Milw aukee; these were about all the parts of 
the territory east of the Mississippi, at that 
date, occupied to any extent by the whites. 

The second session of the first Legislative As- 
sembly of the territory of Wi.<consin, began at 
Burlington, now the county seatof Des Moines 
Co., Iowa, Nov. 0, 1837, and adjourned .Tan. -JO, 
183H, to the second Monday of June following. 
Tlu' |)rincipal acts passe 1 were, one for taking 
another census; one al)olishing imprisonment for 
debt; another regulating the s;ile of scliool 
lauds and to prepare for organizing, reg- 
ulating and perfecting schools. There 
was also one passed incorporating the 

Milwaukee and Rock River Canal Company. 
This was approved by the governor, Jan. 5, 
1838. By an act of Congress approved June 18 
of the same year, a grant of land was made to 
aid in the construction of the canal. The grant 
consisted of the odd-numbered sections on a 
belt of ten miles in width from Lake Michigan 
to Rock river, amounting to 139,190 acres. Of 
those lands 43,447 acres were sold at public 
sale in July, 1839, at the minimum price 
of $2.50 per acre. W^ork was commenced on 
the canal at Milwaukee, and the Milwaukee 
river for a short distance from its outlet was 
improved by the construction of a dam across 
the river, which was made available for manu- 
facturing and other purposes. A canal was 
also built about a mile in length and forty 
feet wide, leading from it down on the west 
bank of the river. Much dissatisfaction subse- 
(juently arose; the purchasers at this sale, and 
others occupying these canal and reserved 
lands felt the injustice of being compelled to 
pay double price for their lands, and efforts 
were made to repeal all laws authorizing fur- 
thersales, and to ask Congress to repeal the act 
making this grant. The legislation on the sub- 
ject of this grant is voluminous. In 18G2 the 
Legislature of the State passed an act to ascer- 
tain and settle the liabilities, if any, of Wis- 
cotisin and the company, and a board of com- 
missioners was appointed for that purpose. At 
the session of the Legislature in 1SC3, the com- 
mittee made a report with a lengthy opinion of 
the attorney-general of the State. The views 
of that officer were, that the company had no 
valid claims for damages against the State. In 
this opinion the commissioners concurred. On 
the 23d of March, 1875, an act was approved by 
the governor, giving authority to the attorney- 
general to discharge and release of record any 
mortgage before executed to the late territory 
of Wisconsin given to secure the purchase 
money or any part thereof of any lands granted 
by Congress to aid in the construction of this 
canal. 'I'he quantity of lands unsold was sub- 


seqnently made a part of the 500,000 acre tract 
granted by Congress for school purposes. It is 
believed the whole matter is now closed 
against further legislative enactments. 

There was another important act parsed by 
the territorial Legislature of 1837-8, by which 
fourteen counties were erected, but all of them 
west of the Mississippi. The census having 
been taken in May, a special session of the 
first Legislative Assembly was commenced June 
11, 1838, at Burlington, continuing to June 25, of 
that year. This session was pursuant to an 
adjournment of the previous one, mainly for 
the purpose of making a new apportionment of 
members. The population of the several 
counties east of the Mississippi was, by the 
May census, 18,149. By an act of Congress, 
approved June 12, 1838, it was provided that 
from and after the 3d day of July following, all 
that part of Wisconsin territory lying west of 
that river and west of a line drawn due north 
from its headwaters or sources to the territorial 
line for the purposes of a territorial govern- 
ment should be set apart and known by the 
name of Iowa. It was further enacted that 
the territory of Wisconsin should thereafter 
extend westward only to the Mississippi. Be- 
cause of the passage of this act, the one passed 
at the special session of the territorial Legisla- 
ture making an apportionment of members, be- 
came nugatory — that duty now devolving 
upon Gov. Doty. On the third Monday of July, 
1838, the annual term of supreme court was 
held at Madison this, of course, being the first 
one after the re-organization of the territory; 
the previous one was not held, as there was no 
business for the court. On the 18th of October, 
Judge Frazer died, and on the 8th of Novem- 
ber, Andrew G. Miller was appointed his suc- 
cessor, by Martin Van Buren, President of ilie 
United States. 

The Legislature of the re-organized territory 
of Wisconsin met at Madison for the first time 
— it being the first session of the second Legis- 
lative Assembly — Nov. 26, 1838. Its attention 

was directed to the mode in which the commis- 
sioners of public buildings had discharged their 
duties. There was an investigation of three 
banks then in operation in the territory — one 
at Green Bay, one at Mineral Point, and the 
other at Milwaukee. A plan, also, for the 
revision of the laws of the territory was con- 
sidered. A new assignment was made for the 
holding of district courts. Chief Justice Dunn 
was assigned to the first district, composed of 
the counties of Iowa, Grant and Crawford; 
Judge Irvin to the second, composed of the 
counties of Dane, Jefferson, Rock, Walworth 
and Green; while Judge Miller was assigned to 
the third district, composed of Milwaukee, 
Brown and Racine counties — including therein 
the unorganized counties of Washington and 
Dodge, which, for judicial purposes, were, 
when constituted, by name and boundary, at- 
tached to Milwaukee county. 'I he Legislature 
adjourned on the 22d of December, to meet 
again on the 21st of the followinsr month. Tiie 
census having been taken during the year, it 
was found that the territory had a population 
,.f 18,130, an increase in two years, of 6,-147. 
The second session of the second Legislative 
Assembly began Jan. 21, 1839, agreeable to 
adjournment. An act was passed during this ses- 
sion legalizing a revision of the laws which had 
been perfected by a committee previously; this 
act took effect July 4, and composed the princi- 
pal part of the laws forming the revised statutes 
of 1839. The session ended March 11, 1839. 
On the 8th of March of this year, Henry Dodge, 
whose term for three years as governor was 
about to expire, was again commissioned by 
the President of the United States. At the 
July term of the supreme court, all the judges 
were present, and several cases were heard and 
decided. A seal for the court was also adopted. 
From this time, the supreme court met annu- 
ally, as provided by law, until Wisconsin be- 
came a State. 

The next Legislature assembled at Madison, 
on the 2d of December, 1839. This was the 



third session of the second Legislative Assem- 
bly of the territory. The term for which raem- 
berB of the house were elected would soon 
expire ; it was therefore desirable that a new 
apportionment should be made. As the census 
would be taken the ensuing June, by the 
United States, it would be unnecessary for the 
territory to make an additional enumeration. 
A short session was resolved upon, and then 
an adjournment until after the completion of 
the census. One of the subjects occupying 
largely the attention of the members, was tlie 
condition of the capitol, and the conduct of the 
commissioners intrusted with the money ap- 
propriated by Congress to defray the cost of its 
construction. These commissioners were James 
Duane Doly, A. A. Bird and .John F. O'Neill. 
They received their appointment from ttie 
general government. Work began on the 
building in June, ISST, the corner stone being 
laid witii appropriate ceremonies July 4. During 
that year and the previous one, Congress ap- 
propriated %40,00n, Dane county S4,00(i, and 
the territorial Legislature, about §16,000, for 
the structure ; so that the entire cost was about 
$60,000. The building, when finished, was a 
substantial structure, wliiuh, in architectural 
design and convenience of arrangement, com- 
pared favorably with the ca])ito!s of adjacent 
and older Slates. Tlie capitol proving inade- 
quate to the growing wants of the Slate, the 
Legislature of I S.iT provided for its enlarge- 
ment. By this act, the commissioners of school 
and university lands were directed to sell the 
ten sections of land appropriated by (Congress 
"for the completion of public buildings,'' and 
apply the proceeds toward enlarging and im- 
proving the State capitol. The State also ap- 
propriated $.30,000 for the same object, and 
ISO, 000 was given by the city of Madison. 
The governor and secretary of Stale were 
made commissioners for conducting llie work, 
which was begun in the fall of 1857, and con- 
tinued from year to year until 1869, when the 
dome was completed. The Legislature of 18^2 

appropriated $200,000 for the construction of 
two transverse wings to the capitol building, 
one on the north and the other on the south 
sides thereof, in order to provide additional 
room for the State historical society, the 
supreme court, the State library, and for the 
increasing work of the State offices. The gov- 
ernor, secretary of Slate, attorney general, 
with others, representing the supreme court 
and the historical society, were made commis- 
sioners for carrying out the work. The cost 
will be within the amount appropriated by the 
State. The total appropriations for the en- 
largement of the capitol and for the improve- 
ment of the park, to the present time, are $629, 
992.54. This does not include the sum of 
$0,500 appropriated in 1875, for macadamizing 
to the center of the streets around the park, 
nor the $200,000 appropriated in 1882. The 
park is 914 feet square, cornering north, soulli, 
east and west, contains fourteen and four-tenths 
acres, and is situated on an elevation command- 
ing a view of the third and fourth lakes and 
the surrounding country. In the center of tlie 
square stands the capitol. The height of the 
building from the basement to the top of tin- 
flag staff is 225^ feet, while the total length of 
its north and south wings, exclusive of steps 
and porticoes, with the addition of the new 
wings, is 396 feet, and of the east and west 
wings, 226 feet. 

Tiie Legislature of 18.39-40, adjourned Janu- 
ary 13, to meet again on the 3d of the ensuing 
August. The completion of the federal census 
of 1840 showed a population for the territory of 
30,744. Upon the re-assembling of the Legisla- 
ture — which is known as the extra session of 
the second Legislative Assembly — some changes 
were made in the apportionment of members to 
the House of Representatives. The session 
lasted but a few days, a final adjournment 
taking place Aug. 14, 1840. The first session 
of the third Legislative Assembly began Dec. 7, 
1S40, and ended Feb. 19, 1841, with only three 
members who had served in the previous Assem- 



bly. All had recently been elected under the 
new apportionment. 

On the 13lh of September, 1S41, Gov. Dodge 
was removed from office by John Tyler, then 
President of the United States, and James 
Duane Doty appointed in his place, the com- 
mission of the latter being dated the 5th of 
October following. 

The second session of the third Legislative 
Assembly began at Madison, on the 6th of 
December, 1841. Gov. Doty, in his message to 
that body, boldly avowed the doctrine that no 
law of the territory was effective until expressly 
approved by Congress. This construction of 
the organic act resulted in a lengthy warfare 
between the governor and the Legislative As- 
sembly. On the nth of February, 1842, an 
event occurred in the Legislative council, caus- 
ing a great excitement over the whole territory. 
On that day, Charles C. P. Arndt, a member 
from Brown county, was, while that body was 
in session, shot dead by James R. Vineyard, a 
member from Grant county. The difficulty 
grew out of a debate on a motion to lay on the 
table the nomination of Enos S. Baker to the 
office of sheriff of Grant county. Immediately 
before adjournment of the council, the parties 
who had come together, after loud and angry 
words had been spoken, were separated by the 
by-standers. When an adjournment had been 
announced, they met again ; whereupon Arndt 
struck at Vineyard. The latter then drew a 
pistol and shot Arndt. He died in a few mo- 
ments. Vineyard immediately surrendered him- 
self to the sheriff of the county, waived an ex- 
amination, and was committed to jail. After a 
short confinement, he was brought before the 
chief justice of the territory, on a writ of habects 
corpus, and admitted to bail. He was after- 
ward indicted for manslaughter, was tried and 
acquitted. Three days after shooting Arndt, 
Vineyard sent in his resignation as member of 
the council. That body refused to receive it, 
or to have it read even ; but at once expelled 
him. The second and last session of the third 

Legislative Assembly came to a close Feb. 18, 

For the next six years there were seven ses- 
sions of the territorial legislature, as follows: 
First session, 4th Legislative Assembly, com- 
menced Dec. 5, 1842, ended April 17, 1843; 
second sesssion, 4th Legislative Assembly, com- 
menced Dec. 4, 1843, ended Jan. 31, 1844; 
third session, 4th Legislative Assembly, com- 
menced Jan. C, 1845, ended Feb. 24, 1845; 
fourth session, 4th Legislative Assembly, com- 
menced Jan 5, 1 846, ended Feb. 3, 1846; first ses- 
sion, 5th Legislative Assembly, commenced Jan. 4, 
1847, ended Feb. 11, 1847; special session, 5th 
Legislative Assembly, commenced Oct. 18, 
1847, ended Oct. 27, 1847; second session, 5th 
Legislative Assembly, commenced Feb. 7, 1848, 
ended March 13, 1848. 

The members of the first session of the 
fourth legislative assembly had been elected 
unded a new apportionment based upon a 
census taken in June, showing a total popula- 
tion of 46,678. In each house there was a 
democratic majority. Gov. Doty was a 
whig. It was a stormy session. After the two 
houses had organized, the governor refused to 
communicate with them, as a body legally 
assembled, according to the organic act, he 
claiming that no appropriation for that object 
had been made by Congress. The houses con- 
tinued in session until the 10th day of December, 
when they adjourned until the 13th of January, 
1843, they having meanwhile made representa- 
tion to the National Legislature, then in session, 
of the objections of the governor. It was not 
until the -fth of February that a quorum in both 
houses had assembled. Previous to this. Con- 
gress had made an appropriation to cover the 
expenses of the session; and the governor, on 
the 13th of January, had issued a proclamation 
convening a special session on the 6th of March. 
Both houses in February adjourned to the day 
fixed by the governor, which ended the troubles; 
and the final adjournment look place, as already 
stated, April 17, 1843. Nathaniel P. Tallmadge 



was appointed governor in place of Doty on 
the 21st of June, 1844, his eomniission bearing 
(late the ICtli of September. .Tame.s K. Polk 
having been elected President of the United 
States in the fall of that year, Henry Dudge 
was again put in the executive chair of the ter- 
ritory, receiving his appointment April 8, 1845, 
and being commissioned May 13 following. 

It was during the fourth session of the fourth 
legislative assembly that preliminary steps 
were taken, which resulted in the formation of 
a State government. The first Tuesday in 
April, 1846, was the day fixed upon for the 
people to vote for or against the proposition. 
When taken it resulted in a large majority 
voting in favor of the measure. An act was 
passed providing for taking the census of the 
territory, and for the ipportionment by the 
governor of delegates to form a State constitu- 
tion, based upon the new enumeration. Tiie 
delegates were to be elected on the first Mon- 
day in September, and the colivention was to 
assemble on the first Monday in October, 1846. 
The constitution when formed was to be sub- 
mitted to the vote of the people for adoption or 
rejection, as, at the close of the session, the 
the terms of members of the council who had 
been elected for four years, and of the house, 
w ho had been elected for two years, all ended. 
Tiie legislature re-organized the election dis- 
tricts, and conferred on thegovernor the power 
and duly of making an apportionment, based on 
the census to be taken, for the next Legislative 
Assembly, when, on the .3d of February, is^o, 

both houses adjourned sine die. The census 
taken in the following June showed a popula- 
tion for the territory of 155,217. Delegates 
having been elected to form a constitution for 
the proposed new State, met at Madison on the 
5th day of October. After completing their 
labors, they adjourned. This event took place 
on the 16th of December, 1846. The constitu- 
tion thus formed was submitted to a popular 

vote on the first Tuesday of April, 1847, and 
rejected. A special session of the legislature, 
to take action concerning the admission of Wis- 
consin into the Union began Oct. 18, 1847, and 
a law was passed for the holding of another 
convention to frame a constitution. Delegates 
to the new convention were elected on the last 
.Monday of November, and that body met at 
Madison the 15th of December, 1847. A census 
of the territory was taken this year, which 
showed a population of 210, .546. The result of 
the labors of the second constitutional conven- 
tion was the formation of a constitution, 
which, being submitted to the people on the 
second Monday of March, 1848, was duly ratified. 
On the 29th of May, 1848, by act of Congress, 
Wisconsin became a State. 

It may be here premised that the western 
boundai-y of the new State left out a full oi- 
ganized county, with a sheriff, clerk of court, 
judge of probaie, and justices of the peace. A 
bill had been introduced ai, a previous session 
in Congress, by Morgan L. ]\Iartin,the delegate 
from Wisconsin, to organize a territorial govern- 
ment for Minnesota, including the district left 
out on the admission of Wisconsin; but which 
failed to become a law. The citizens of what 
is now Minnesota were very anxious to obtain a 
territorial government, and two public meetings 
were held — one at St. Paul, and the other at 
Stillwater — advising John Catlin, who was 
secretary of Wisconsin, to issue a proclamation 
as the acting governor, for the election of a 
delegate to represent what was left of the 
territory of Wisconsin. Mr. Catlin repairol to 
Stillwater and issued a proclamation accordingly. 
H. H. Sibley was elected; nearly 400 votes hav- 
ing been polled at the election. Sibley was 
admitted to his seat on the floor of Congress by 
a vote of two to one. His admission facilitated 
and hastened the jiassage of a l)ill for the or- 
ganization of a territorial government for Min- 





The State of Wisconsin is bounded on the 
north by Minnesota and Mi(;higan; on the east 
by the State last mentioned; on the south, by 
Illinois, Iowa and Minnesota; and on the west, 
by the two last named States. Its boundaries, 
as more particularly described, are as follows: 
Beginning at its northeast corner of the State 
of Illinois, that is to say, at a point in the center 
of Lake Michigan, where the line of forty-two 
degrees and thirty minutes of north latitude, 
crosses the same; thence running with the boun- 
dary line of the State of Michigan, through Lake 
Michigan [andj Green bay to the mouth of the 
Menomonee river; thence up the channel of the 
said river to the Brule river; thence up said 
last mentioned river to Lake Brule; thence along 
the southern shore of Lake Brule, in a direct 
line to the center of the channel between Mid- 
dle and South islands, in the Lake of the Desert; 
thence in a direct line to the head waters of the 
Montreal river, as marked upon the survey made 
by Captain Cram; thence down the main chan- 
nel of the Montreal river to the middle of Lake 
Superior; thence through the center of Lake 
Superior to the mouth of the St. Louis river; 
thence up the main channel of said river to the 
first rapids in the same, above the Indian vil- 
lage, according to Nicollett's map, thence due 
south to the main branch of the River St. Croix; 
thence down the main channel of said river to 
the Mississippi; thence down the center of tin- 
main channel of that river to the northwest 
corner of the State of Illinois; thence due east 
with the northern boundary of the State of 
Illinois to the place of beginning. The gen- 
eral shape of Wisconsin is that of an 

irregular pentagon. Its land area is 53,- 
924 square miles; and, in respect to size, it 
ranks with the other States as the 15th. It is 
known as one of the North Central States, east 
of the Mississippi. It extends from 9 degrees 
50 minutes to 15 degrees 50 minutes west longi- 
tude from Washington city, and from 42 de- 
grees 80 minutes to about 47 degrees 80 minutes 
north latitude. It has Lake Michigan on the 
east. Green bay, Menomonee and Brule rivers. 
Lake Vieux Desert, the Montreal river. Lake 
Superior and the St. Louis river; on the north- 
east and north; and, on the west, the St. Croix 
and the Mississippi rivers* The average length 
of the State is about 260 miles; its average 
breadth 215 miles. The surface features of 
Wisconsin present a configuration between the 
mountainous, on the one hand, and a monoto- 
nous level, on the other. The State occupies a 
swell of land lying between three notable de- 
pressions: Lake Michigan, on the east; Lake 
Superior, on the north; and the valley of the 
Mississippi, on the west. From these depress- 
ions the surface slopes upward to the summit 
altitudes. Scattered over the State are promi- 
nent hills, but no mountains. Some of these 
hills swell upward into rounded domes, some 
ascend precipitously into castellated towers; and 
some reach prominence without regard to beauty 

' '*The boundary of Wisconsin is commonly (riven as Lalie 
Superior and the State of Micliigan on the north, and Michi- 
igan and Lalte Michigan on the east, and sometimes, also, 
the Mississippi river is given as a part of the western boun- 
dary. These boundaries are not the true ones. The Stnte of 
Wisconsin extends to the center of Lakes Michigan and Su- 
perior, and to the cenierof the main channel of theMis-sis- 
sippi river. As the States of Wisconsin and Michigan meet 
in the center of Lake Michigan, it is not Lake Michigan that 
bounds Wisconsin on the east. buttheState of Michigan, and 
so on. The correct boundary of Wisconsin in general ti'rms. 
is as follows: Wisconsin is bounded north by Minnesota and 
Michigan, east by Michigan, south by Illinois, and west by 
Iowa and Minnesota."— 4. O. Wright. 



or form or convenience of description. The 
highest peak, in the southwestern part of the 
State, is tlie West Blue Mound, 1,151 feet above 
Lake Michigan; in the eastern part, Lapham's 
Peak, 824 feet; in the central part, Rib Hill, 
1 ,263 feet; while the crest of the Penokee Range, 
in the northern part, rises upward of 1,000 feet. 
The drainage systems correspond, in general, to 
the topographical features before described. 
The face of the State is the growth of geologic 
ages furrowed by the teardrops of the skies. 

The constitution of Wisconsin provided for 
the election of a governor, lieutenant governor, 
secretary of State, treasurer and attorney gen- 
eral, as the officers of State. The first State 
election was held May 8, 1848, when, not only 
State officers were chosen, but members of the 
Legislature and members of Congress. The fol- 
lowing are the names of the governors elected 
and the terms they have served, since Wisconsin 
became a State: Nelson Dewey, June 7, 1848 
to Jan. 5, 1852; Leonard J. Farwell, Jan. 5, 
1852, to Jan. 5, 1854; William A. Barstow, Jan. 
2, 1854, to March 21, 1856; Arthur McArtliur, f 
March 21, to March 25, 1850; Coles Bashfoid, 
March 25, 1856, to Jan. 4, 1858; Alexander W. 
Randall, Jan. 4, 1858, to Jan. 6, 1862; Louis P. 
Harvey, Jan. 0, 1862, to April 19, 1862; Edward 
Solomon, t April 19, 1862, to Jan. 4, 1804; 
James T. Lewis, Jan. 4, 1864, to Jan. 1, 1866; 
Lucius Farchild, Jan. 1, 1866, to Jan. 1, 1872: 
C. C. Washburn, Jan. I, 1872, to Jan. 5, 1874; 
William R. Taylor, Jan. 5, 1874, to Jan. -i, 1876; 
Harrison Ludington, Jan. 3, 1876, to Jan. 7, 1878; 
William E. Smith, Jan. 7, 1878 to Jan. 2. 1882, 
Jeremiah M. Rusk, Jan. 2, 1882, and still in 

The gubernatorial vote of Wisconsin since its 
admission into the Union was as follows: 


Dewey, democrat 19, .'538 

Tweedy, whig 14, 449 


Dewey, democrat 16,649 

Collins, whig 11,317 

Dewey's majority 5, 832 


Fiuwell, whig 22,319 

Upham, democrat 21, 812 

Faiwell's majority. 



Barstow, democrat 30,405 

Holton, republican 21, 886 

Baird, whig 3,334 

Biirstow's plurality 8,519 


Barstow, democrat 36, 355 

Baehford, republicau 36,198 

Barstow's majority. 



Rtindall, republican 44,693 

Cross, democrat 44,239 

Randall's majrrity. 



Randall , republican 59, 99U 

Ilobart, democrat 52, 539 

Randall's majority 7.460 


Harvey, republican 53,777 

Ferguson, democrat 45, 456 

Harvey's majority 8,321 

I 1863. 

Lewis, republican 72,717 

Palmer, democrat 49, 053 

Lewis' majority 23, 664 


Fail child, republican 58, 332 

Hobart, democrat 48,330 

Dewey's majority. 

Fairchild's majority 10. 002 


Fairchi.d, republican 73,637 

Tallmadge, democrat 68,878 

5,089 Fairchild's majorily 4,764 

•rhis certltleate was set aside by the supreme court. 




Fail-child, republic«n 69.502 

RobinsoB, democrat 61,339 

Fairchilds' majorily 8,263 


VVa3hl)Uiii, republican 78,301 

Doolitlle, democrat 68,910 

Washburn's majoi it}' 9,391 


Taylor, democrat 81, 599 

Washburn, republiciin 66,224 

Tajlor's raajoiity 15,375 


Ludington, republican 85,1.55 

Tajlor, democrat 84,814 

Ludington's majority 841 


Smith, republican 78,759 

Mallory, dcmocral 70.486 

Allis, gree;iback 26,216 

Smith's majority 8,273 


Smitb, republicaa 100. 535 

.Jenkins, democrat 75,080 

May, greenback 12,090 

Smith's majorily over both 12.509 


Husk, republican 81 , 754 

Fratt, democrat 69, 797 

Kanouse. proliibition 13, 225 

Allis, greenback 7. 002 

Rusk's plurality 11, 957 

The following are the name.s of the lieuten- 
ant governors atid their terms of service, since 
Wisconsin became a State; John E. Holmes, 
June 7, 1848, to Jan. 7, 1850; Samuel W. Beall, 
Jan. 7, 1850, to Jan. 5, 1852; Timothy Burns, 
Jan. 5, 1852, to Jan. 2, 1854; James T. Lewis, 
Jan. 2, 1854, to Jan. 7, 1856; Arthur McAvthur, 
Jan. 7, 1856, to Jan. 4, 1858; E. D. Campbell, Jan. 
4, 1858. to Jan. 2, 1860; Butler G. Noble, Jan. 
2,) 1860 to Jan. 6, 186-2; Edward Solomon, Jan. 
6, 1862, to April 19, 1862; Gerry W. Hazolton, 
(ex-officio), Sept. 10, 1862, to Sept. 26, 186'j; 

Wyraan Spooner, Jan. 14, 1863, to Jan. 3, 1870; 
Thaddeus C. Pound, Jan. 3, 1870, to Jan. 1, 
1872; Milton H. Pettit, Jan. 1, 1872, to March 
23, 1873: Charles D. Parker, Jan. 5, 1874, to 
Jan. 7, 1878; James M. Bingham, Jan. 7, 1878, 
to Jan. 2, 1882; Samuel S. Fifieid, Jan. 2, 1882, 
and still in office. 

The following are the persons that have been 
elected secretaiies of State, with their terms of 
office, since the State was admitted into the 

Thomas McHugh, June 7, 1848, to Jan. 7, 1850; 
William A. Barstow, Jan. 7, 1850, to Jan. 5, 
1852; CD. Robinson, Jan. 5, 1852, to Jan. 2, 
1854; Alexander T. Gray, Jan. 2, 1854, to Jan. 
7, 1856; David W. Jones, Jan. 7, 1856, to Jan. 

2, 1860; Louis P. Harvey, Jan. 2, 1860, to Jan. 

6, 1862; James T. Lewis, Jan. G, 1862, to Jan. 

4, 1864; Lucius Fairchild, Jan. 4, 1864, to Jan. 

1, 1866; Thomas S. Allen, Jan. 1, 18')6, to Jan. 

3, 1870; Llywelyn, Jan. 3, 1870, to Jan. 

5, 1874; Peter Doyle, Jan. 5, 1874, to January 

7, 1878; Ham B. Warner, Jan. 7, 1878, to Jan. 

2, 1882; Ernest G. Timme, Jan. 2, 1882 and 
still in office. 

The treasurers, with their terms of office, 
have been as follows: 

Jairus C. Fairchild, June 7, 1848, to Jan. 5, 
1852; Edward H. Janssen, Jan. 5, 1852, to Jan. 
7, 1856; Charles Kuehn, Jan. 7, 1850, to Jan 4. 
1858; Samuel D. Hastings, Jan. 4, 1858, to Jan. 
1, l866;WilliamE. Smith, Jan. 1, 1866, to Jan. 3, 
1870; Henry Baetz, Jan. 3, 1870 to Jan. 5, 1874; 
Ferdinand Kuehn, Jan. 5, 1874, to Jan. 7, 1878; 
Richard Gucnther, Jan. 7, 1878, to Jan. 2, lss2; 
Edward C. McFetridge, Jan. -2, 1882 and still in 

Attorneys-General, with their terms of office, 
have been elected as follows: 

James S. Brown, June 7,1848, to Jan. 7, 1850; 
S. Park Coon, Jan. 7, 1850, to Jan. 5, 1852; Ex- 
perience Estabrook, Jan. 5, 1852, to Jan. 2, ]S54; 
George B. Smith, Jan. 2, 1854, to Jan. 7, 1S56; 
William R. Smith, Jan. 7, 1856, to Jan. 4, 1858; 
Gabriel Bouck, Jan. 4, 1858 to Jan. 2, 1860; 



James H. Howe, Jan. 2, 1860, to Oct. 7, 1862; 
Winfield Smith, Oct. 7, 1862, to Jan. 1, 1866; 
Charles R. Gill, Jan. 2, 1866 to Jan. 3, 1870; 
Stephen S. Barlow, Jan. 3, 1870, to Jan. 5, 1874; 
A. Scott S'oan. Jan. 5, 1874, to Jan. 7, 1878;' 
Alexander Wilson, Jan. 7, 1878, to Jan. •', 1882; 
Leander F. Frisby, Jan. 2, 18o2, and still in 

The constitution divided the State into nine- 
teen senatorial and sixty-six assembly districts. 
In each of these districts, on the of May, 
1848, one member was elected. 

The first Legislature of the State began its 
session at Madison, the capital, where all subse- 
quent ones have convened. The commencement 
and ending of each session, with the names of 
the speakers, were as follows. 

Ninean E. Whiteside, June 5, 1848, to Aug- 
ust 21. 

Harrison C. Hobart, Jan. 10, 1849, to April 2. 
Moses .M. Strong, Jan. 9, 1850, to February 1 1 . 
Frederick W. Horn, Jan. 8, 1851, to March 17 
James M. Shafer, Jan. 14, 1852, to April 10. 
Henrv L. Palmer, Jan. 12, 1853, to April 4. 
Henry L. Palmer, June 6, 1853, to July 13. 
Frederick W. Horn, Jan. 1 1, 1854, to April 3. 
Charles C. Sholes, Jan. 10, 1855, to April 2. 
William Hull, Jan. 9, 18.56, to March 31. 
William Hull, Sept. 3, 1856, to October 14. 
Wyman Spooner, Jan. 14, 1857, to March 9. 
Frederick S. Lovell, Jan. 13, 1858, to May 17. 
William P. Lyon, Jan. 12, 1859, to March 21. 
William P. Lyon, Jan. 11, 1860, to April 2. 
Amasa Cobb, Jan. 9, 1861, to April 17. 
Amasa Cobb, May 15, 1861, to May 27. 
James W. IJeardsley, Jan. 8, 1862, to April 7. 
JamesW. Beardsley, June 3, 1862, to June 17. 
James W. Beardsley, Sept. 10, 1862, to Sept. 

J. Allen Barker, Jan. 14, 1863, to April 2. 
William W. Field, Jan. 13, 1864, to April 4. 
William W. Field, Jan. 11, 1865, to April 10. 
Henrv I). Barron, Jan. 10, 18C6, to April 12. 
Angus Cameron, Jan. 9, 1867, to April 1 1. 

Ale.xander M. Thomson, Jan. 8, 1868 to 
March 6. 

Alexander M. Thomson, Jan. 13, 1869, to 
March 11. 

James M. Bingham, Jan. 12, 1870, to March 

William E. Smith, Jan. II, 1871, to March 25. 
Daniel Hall, Jan. 10, 1872, to March 26. 
Ilf-nry D. Barron, Jan. 8, 1873, to March 20. 
(iabe Bouck, Jan. 14, 1874, to March 12. 
Frederick W. Horn, Jan. 13, 1875, to March 6. 
Samuel S. Fifield, Jan. 12, 1876, to March 14. 
.John B. Cassoday, Jan. 10, 1877, to March 8. 

Augustus R. Barrows, Jan. 9, 1878, to March 

Augustus R. ]5arrows, June 4, 1878, to June 7. 

David M. Kelley, Jan. 8, 1879, to March 6. 

Alexander A. Arnold, Jan. 14, 1880, to 
March 17. 

Ira D. Bradford, Jan. 12, 1881, to April 4. 

Franklin L. Gilson, Jan. 11, 1882, to March 31. 

Earl P. Finch, Jan. 10, 1883, to April 4. 

The constitutiiMi divided the State int) two 
congressional districts, in each of which one 
member of CoTigress was elected May 8, 1848. 
The first district embraced the counties of Mil- 
waukee, Waukesha, Jefferson, Racine, Walworth, 
Rock and Green; the second district was com 
posed of the counties of Washington, Sheboy- 
gan, Manitowoc, <^'aliimet. Brown, Winnebago, 
Fond du Lac, Marquette, Sauk, Portage, Colum- 
bia, Dodge, Dane, Iowa, Lafayette, (^rant, 
Richland, Crawford, Chijipewa, St Croix and 
La Pointe — the counties of Richland, Cliii)pfwa 
and La Pointe being unorganized. (It may 
here be stated that the first Legislature ch.iiigeii 
the apportionment, making three distiicts; 
other apportionments have been made at each 
decade, so that there are now nine congress- 
ional districts.) The first members were elected 
to the XXXth Congress, which expired March 4. 
1849. The members elected from Wisconsin to 
that and subsequent Congresses are: 



XXXth Congress, 1847-9. 
First District —William Pitt Lyude. * 
Second District. — Mason C. Darling. * 

XXXIst Congress, 1849—51. 
First District. — Charles Durkee. 
Second District.— Orsamiis Cole. 
Third District. — James Duane Doty. 

XXXIId Congress, 1851-53. 
First District. — Charles Durkee. 
Second District. — Ben. C Eastman. 
Third District.— John B. Macy. 

XXXIIId Congress, 1 853-55. 
First District — D.iuiel Wells, Jr. 
Second District — Ben C. Eastman. 
Third District— John B. Macy. 

XXXIVth Congress, 185.5-57. 
First District. — Daniel Wells, Jr. 
Second Dis'rict. — C. C. Washburn. 
Third District. — Charles Billinghurst. 

XXXV th Congress, 1857-59. 
Firsi District— John P. Potter. 
Second District. — C. C. Washburn. 
Third District. — Charles BilliDghurat. 

XXXVIth Congress, 1859-61. 
First District.— John F. Potter. 
Second District. — 0. C. Washburn. 
Third District. — Charles H. Lvrrabee. 

XXXVIIth Congress, 1861-63. 
First Dislrict.—JohnF. Potter. 
Second District. — Luther Hanchett, f Waller Mc- 

Thitd District. — A. Scott Sloan. 

XXXVIIIth Congress, 1863-65. 
First District. — James S. Brown. 
Second District. —Ithamar C. Sloan. 
Third District. — .\niasaCobb. 
Fourth District— Charles A. Eldredge. 
Fifth DIsliict.— Ezra Wheeler. 
Si-xlli District.— Walter D. Mclndoe, 

XXXIXth Congress, 1865-67. 
P'irst District. — Halbert E. Paine. 
Second District. — IthamarC. Sloan. 
Third District — Amasa Cobb. 
Fourth District. — Charles A. Eldredge. 
Fifth District. — Philefus Sawyer. 
Sixth District. — Walter D. Mclndoe. 

* Took their seats June 5 and 9, 1848. 

+ Died Nov. 34, IS&J; Mcludoe elected to All tbe vaoauoy, 
Deo. 30. 1863 

XLth Congress, 1867-69. 
First District— Halbert E. Paine. 
Second District. — Benjamin F. Hopkins. 
Third District. — Amasa Cobb. 
. Fourth District — Charles A. Eldredge. 
Fifth District. — Philelus Sawyer. 
Sixth District. — Cadwallader C. Washburn. 

XLIst Congress, 1 869-7 1 . 
First District. — Halbert E. Paine. 
Second District. — Benjamin P. Hopkins. X 

David At wood. 
Third District. — Amasa Cobb. 
Fourth District. — Charles A. Eldredge. 
Fifth District. — Phietus Sawyer. 
Sixth District — Cadwallader C. Washburn. 

XLIId Congress, 1871-73. 
First District. — Alexander Mitchell. 
Second District. — Gerry W. Hazeltoti. 
Third District. — J. Allen Barber. 
Fourth District. — Charles A. Eldredge. 
Fifth District. — Philetus Sawyer. 
Sixth District. — Jeremiah M. Rusk. 

XLIIId Congress, 1873-75. 
First District. — Charles 6 Williams. 
Second District. — Gerry W. Hazelton. 
Third District. — J. Allen Barber. 
Fourth District — Alexander Mitchell. 
Fifth District.— Charles A. Eldredge. 
Sixth District. — Philetus Sawyer 
Seventh District. — Jeremiah M. Rusk. 
Eighth District.— Alexander S. McDill. 

XLIVth Congress, 1875-77. 
First District.— Charles G. Williams. 
Second District. — Lucien B. Caswell. 
Tliird District.— Henry S. Magoon. 
Fourth District.- William Pitt Lynde. 
Fifth District.- Samuel D. Burchard. 
Si.Mh District. — Alanson M. Kimball. 
Seventh District. — Jeremiah M. Rusk. 
Eighth District.— George W. Cate. 

XLVth Congress, 1877-79. 

First District.— Charles G. Williams. 

Second District. — Lucien B. Caswell. 

Thi'd District. — GeorgeC. Hazelton. 

Fourth District. — William Pitt Lynde. 

Hfth District.— Edward S. Bragg. 

Sixth District. — Gabriel Bouck. 

Seventh Di'itrict. — Herman L. Humphrey. 

Eighth District.— Thaddeus C. Pound. 

% Died Jan. 1,1870. and David Atwood elected tofil vacancy 
Feb. 1.5, 1870. 



XLVIth Congress, 1879-81. 
First District.— Charles G Wiliiams. 
Sei-ond District. — Lucien B. Caswell. 
Third District— George C. Hazelton. 
Fourth District.— Peter V. Deusler. 
Fifth District. -Edward 3. Bragg. 
Sixth District,— Gabriel Bouck. 
Seventh District.— Herman L. Humphrey. 
Eighth Di-lrict — Thaddcus C. Pound. 

XLVIIth Congress, 1881-83. 
First District.— Charles G. Williams. 
Second District. — Lucien B. Ciiswill. 
Third Distiict. — George C. Hazelton. 
Fourth District. — Peter V. Deuster. 
Fifth District.— Edwards. Bragg. 
Sixth District. — Richard Guenther. 
Seventh District. — Herman L. Humphrey. 
Eighth District — Thaddeus C. Pound. 

XLVIIIth Congress, 188.3-85. 
First District. — John Winans. 
Second District. — Daniel H. Sumner. 
Third District. — Burr W. Jones. 
Fourth District. — Peter V. Deuster. 
Fifth District. — Joseph Rankin. 
SLxth District —Richard Guenther, 
Seventh District. — Gilbert M. Woodward. 
Eighth District.— William T Price. 
Ninth District. — Isaac Stephenson. 

The lirst Legislature in joint convention, 
on ttie 7tli of June 1848, canvassed, in accord- 
ance with tlie constitution, the votes given on 
the 8th of May, for the State officers, and the 
two representatives in Congress. On the same 
daj the Slate officers were sworn into office. 
The next day Gov. Dewey delivere<1 his 
first message to the Legislature. The first im- 
portant business of the first State Legislature 
was the election of two United States senators; 
Henry Dodge and Isaac P. Walker, botli 
democrats, were elected. The latter drew the 
sliortterin; so that his office expired on the 4tli 
day of Marc)), 1849, at the end of the thirtecntli 
Congress; as Dodge drew tlie long term, his 
office expired on the 4th day of March, 1851, 
at the end of thirty-first Congress. Botli were 
elected, June 8, 1848. Their successors, with 
the date of tlieir elections, were as follows: 
Isaac P. Walker, Jan. 17, 1849; Henry Dodge, 
Jan. 20, 1851 ; Charles Durkee, Feb. 1, 1855; 

James R. Doolittle, Jan. 23, 1857; Timothy O. 
Howe, Jan. 23, 1861; James R. Doolittle, Jan. 
22, 1863; Timothy O. Howe, Jan. 24, 1867; 
Matthew H. Carpenter, Jan. 26, 1869 ; Timothy 
O. Howe, Jan. 21, 1873; Angus Cameron, Feb. 
3, 1875 ; Matthew II. Carpenter, Jan. 22, 1879; 
Philetus Sawyer, Jan. 26, 1881 ; Angus Cam- 
eron, March 10, 1881. 

The constitution vested the judicial power of 
the State in a supreme court, circuit court, 
courts of probate, and justices of the peace, 
giving the Legislature power to vest such juris- 
diction as should be deemed necessary in mu- 
nicipal courts. Judges were not to be elected 
at any State or county election, nor within 
thirty days before or after one. The State was 
divided into five judicial circuits, Edward V. 
VVhiton being chosen judge at the election on 
the first Monday in August, 1848, of the first 
circuit, composed of the counties of Racine, 
Walworth, Rock and Green as then constituted; 
Levi Hubbell, of the second, composed of 
Milwaukee, Waukesha, Jefferson and Dane; 
Charles II. Larrabee, of the third, composed of 
Washington, Dodge, Columbia, Marquette, 
Sauk and Portage, as then formed; Alexander 
W. Stow, of the fourth, composed of Brown, 
Manitowoc, Sheboygan, Fond du Lac, Winne- 
l):igo and Calumet; and Mortimer M. Jackson, 
of the fifth, composed of the counties of Iowa, 
I^aFayette, Grant, Crawford and St Croix, as 
ll en organized ; the county of Richland being 
attached to Iowa county ; the county of 
Chippewa to the county of Crawford ; and 
the county of LaPointe to tlie county of 
St. Croix, for judicial ))ur])os;es. In 1850, a sixth 
circuit was formed. IJy an act, which took ef- 
fect in 18.54, a seventh circuit was formed. On 
the 1st dsy of January, I85.=>, an eighth and 
ninth circuit was formed. In the same year 
was also formed a tenth circuit. An eleventh 
circuit was formed in 1864. By an act which 
took effect the 1st day of January, 1871, the 
twelfth circuit was formed. In 1876 a thir- 
teenth circuit was "constituted and re-organ 



ized." At the present time John M. Went- 
worih is judge of the first circuit, «hich is com- 
posed of the counties of Walworth, Kacine, and 
Kenosha; Cliarles A. Hamilton of the second, 
which includes Milwaukee county; David J. 
Pulling of the third, composed of Calumet, 
Green Lake and Winnebago; Norman S. Gil- 
son of the fourth, composed of Sheboygan, Mani- 
towoc, Kewaunee and Fond du Lac; (George 
Cleraentson of the fifth, composed of Grant, 
Iowa, La Fayette, Hichland and Crawford; 
Alfred VV. Newman of the sixth, composed of 
Clark, Jackson, La Crosse, Monroe, Trem- 
pealeau and Vernon; Charles M. Webb of the 
seventh, composed of Portage, Marathon, Wau- 
paca, Wood, Waushara, Lincoln, Price, and Tay- 
lor; Egbert B. Buiidy of the eighth, composed 
of Huffalo, Dunn, Eau Claire, Pepin, Pierce, and 
St. Croix; Alva Stewart of the ninth, composed 
of Adams, Columbia, Dane, Juneau, Sauk, 
M rquette; George H. My res, of the tenth, 
composed of Florence, Langlade, Outagamie, and 
Shawano; Solon C. Clough of the eleventh, 
composed of Ashland, Barron, Bayfield, Burnett, 
Chippewa, Douglas, Polk, and Washburn; John 
K. iJennettof the twelfth, composed of Rock, 
Green, and Jefferson; A. Scott Sloan, ot thethir- 
teenth, composed of Dodge, Ozaukee, Washing- 
ton, and Waukesha; Samuel D. Hastings of the 
fourteenth, composed of Brown, Door, Mainette 
and Oconto. 

The first Legislature provided for the re-elec- 
tion of juilges of the circuit courts on the first 
Monday of August, 1848. By the same act it 
was provided that the first term of the supreme 
court siiould be held in Madison, on the sec- 
ond Monday of January, 1849, and thereafter 
at the same place and on the same day, 
yearly ; afterward changed so as to hold 
a January and June term in each year. 
Under the constitution, the circuit judges 
were also judges of the supreme court. One 
of their own number under an act of June 29, 
1S4S, was to be, by themselves, elected chief 
justice. Under this arrangement, the following 

were the justices of the supreme court, at the 
times indicated: Alex. W. Stow, C. J., fourth, 
district, Aug. 28, 1848, to Jan. 1, 1851; Edward 
V. Whiton, A. J., first circuit, Aug. 28, 1848, 
to June 1, 1853; Levi Hubbell, A. J., 
elected chief justice, June 18, 1851, second 
circuit, Aug. 28, 1848, to June 1, 1853; Charles 
H. Larrabee, A. J., third circuit, Aug. 28, 1848, 
to June 1, 1853; Mortimer M. Jackson, A. J., 
fifth circuit, Aug. 28, 1848, to June 1, 1853; 
Timothy O. Howe, A. J., fourth circuit, Jan. 
1, 1851, to June 1, 1853; Wiram Knowlton, A. 
J., sixth circuit, organized by the Legislature in 
1850, Aug. 6, 1850,to June 1, 1853. In 1853, the 
supreme court was separately organized, the 
chief justice and associate justices being voted 
for as such. The following persons have con- 
stituted that court during tbe terms indicated, 
since its separate organization: Edward V. 
Whiton, C. J., June 1, 1853, to April 12, 1859; 
Luther S. Dixon, C. J., April 20, 1859, to June 
17 1874; Edward G. Ryan, C. J., June 17, 1874, 
to Oct. 19, 1880; Orsamus Cole, C. J., Nov. 11, 
1880, (in oflice); Samuel Crawford, A. J., June 
1, 1853, to June 19, 1855 ; Abraham D. Smith. 
A. J., June 1, 1853, to June 21, 1859; Orsamus 
Cole, A. J., June 19,1855, to Nov. 11, 1880; 
Byron Paine, A. J., June 21, 1859, to Nov. 15, 
1864; Jason Downer, A. J., Nov. 15, 1864, to 
Sept. 11, 1867; Byron Paine, A. J., Sept. 11. 
1867, to Jan. 13, 1871; William P. Lyon, A. J., 
Jan. 20, 1870, (in oflice); David Taylor, A. J., 
April 18, 1878, (in office); Harlow S. Orton, A. 
J., April 18, 1878, (in office); John B. Casso- 
day, A. J., Nov. 11, 1880, (in oflice). 

The act of Congress entitled "An act to eiia 
ble the people of Wisconsin territory to form a 
constitution and State government, and for the 
admission of such State into the Union," ap- 
proved Aug. 6, 1846, provided for one I nited 
States judicial district to be called the district 
of Wisconsin. It was also provided that a dis- 
trict court should be held therein by one judge 
who should reside in the district and be called 
a district judge. The court was to hold two 



terms a year in the capital, Madison. This was 
afterward changed so that one term only was 
lield at the seat of the State government, wliile 
the other was to be held at Milwaukee. Special 
terras could be held at either of these places. 
» On the 12th day of June, 1848, Andrew G. 
Miller was appointed by the President district 
judge. By the act of Congress of July 15, 1862, 
a circuit court of the United States was created 
to be held in Wisconsin. The district judge 
was given power to hold the circuit court in 
Wisconsin in company with the circuit judge 
and circuit justice, or either of them, or alone 
in their absence. Wisconsin now com])08es a 
portion of the seventh judicial circuit of the 
United States, Thomas Drummond being cir- 
cuit judge. He resides at Chicago. The cir- 
cuit justice is one of judges of the United States 
supreme court. Two terms of the circuit court 
are held each year at Milwaukee and one term 
in Madison. 

In 1870 tlic State was divided into two dis- 
tricts, the eastern and western. In the westerii 
district, one term of the United States district 
court each year was to be held at Madison and 
one at La Crosse; in the eastern district, two 
terms were to be held at Milwaukee and one at 
Oshkosh. On the Otli day of July, 1870, James 
C. Hopkins was appointed judge of the western 
district, Andrew G. Miller i-emaining judge of 
the eastern district. The latter resigned to 
take effect Jan. 1, 1874, and James H. Howe 
was ajipointed to Kll the vacancy; but Judge 
Howe soon resigned, and ('liarles E. Dyer, on 
the 10th of February, 187-5, appointed in his 
place. He is still in office. Judge Hopkins, of 
the western district, died .Sept. 4, 1877; when, 
on the 1.3ih of October following, Romanzo 
Bunn was appointed his successor, and now fills 
that office. 

An act was passed by the first Legislature pro- 
viding for the election and defining t!ie duties 
of a State superintendent of public instruction. 
The persons holding that office, with the terra 
of each, are as follows: Eleazer Root, from 

Jan. 1, 1849, to Jan. 5, 1852; Azel P. Ladd, 
from Jan. 5, 1852, to Jan. 2, 1854; Hiram A. 
Wright, from Jan. 5, 1854, to May 29, 1855; 
A. Constantine Barry, from June 26, 1855, to 
Jan. 4, 1858; Lyman C. Draper, from Jan. 4, 
1858, to Jan. 2, 1860; Jpsiah L. Pickard, from 
Jan. 2, 1860, to Sept. 30, 1864; John G. Mc- 
Mynn, from Oct. 1, 1864, to Jan. 6, 1868; Alex- 
ander J. Craig, from Jan. 6, 1868, to Jan. 3, 
1870; Samuel Fallows, from Jan. 6, 1870, to 
Jan. 4, 1874; Edward Searing, from Jan. 4, 
1874, to Jan 7, 1878; William C. Whitford, 
from Jan. 7, 1878, to Jan. 2, 1882; Robert Gra- 
ham, from Jan. 2, 1882, (now in office.) By the 
same Legislature, a State University was estab- 
lished. The school system of Wisconsin em- 
braces graded schools, to be found in all the 
cities and larger villages, the district schools, 
organized in the smaller villages and in the 
country generally, besides the University of 
Wisconsin, (located at Madison, the capital of 
the State). The university has three depart- 
ments: the college of letters, the college of arts, 
and the college of law. It was founded upon a 
grant of seventy-two sections of land made by 
Congress to the territory of Wisconsin. That 
act required the secretary of the treasury to set 
apart and reserve from sale, out of any public 
lands within the territory of Wisconsin, "a 
quantity of land, not exceeding two entire towi:- 
ships, for the support of a university within the 
said territory and for no other use or purpose 
whati^oever; to be located in tracts of land not 
less tlian an entire section corresponding witli 
any of the legal divisions into which the public 
lands are authorized to be surveyed." The 
territorial Legislature, at its session in 1838, 
passed a law incorporating the "University of 
the Territory of Wisconsin," locating the same 
at or near Madison. In 1841 a commissioner 
was appointed to select the lands donated to 
the State for the maintenance! of the university, 
who ppr'ormi'd the dutv assigned to him in a 
most acceptable ni;imii'r. Section a of article 
X of tlu' State i-onstilutioii prii\idi's thai "pro- 




vision shall be made by law for the establish- 
ment of a State University at or near the seat of 
government. The proceeds of all lands that 
have been or may hereafter be granted by the 
United States to the State, for the support of a 
University shall be and remain a perpetual fund, 
to be called the 'University fund,' the interest 
of which shall be appropriated to the support 
of the State University." Immediately upon 
the organization of the State government an 
act was passed incorporating the State Univer- 
sity, and a board of regents appointed, who at 
once organized the institution. 

The Uniyfersity was formally opened by the 
public inauguration of a chancellor, Jan. 16, 
1 850. The preparatory department of the Uni- 
versity was opened Feb. 5, 1849, with twenty 
pupils. In 1849 the regents purchased nearly 
200 acres of land, comprising what is known as 
ihe "University Addition to the City of Madi- 
son," and the old "University Grounds." In 
1851 the north dormitory was completed, and 
the first college classes formed. In 1854 the 
south dormitory was erected. Owing to the 
fact that the lands comprising the original grant 
had produced a fund wholly inadequate to the 
support of the university, in 1S54 a further 
grant of seventy-two sections of land was made 
by Congress to the State for that purpose. In 
1866 the University was completely re-organized, 
so as to meet the requirements of a law of Con- 
gress passed in 1862, providing for the endow- 
ment of agricultural colleges. That act granted 
to the several States a quantity of land equal to 
30,000 acres for each senator and representa- 
tive in Congress, by the apportionment under 
the census of 1860. The objects of that grant 
are fully set forth in sections four and five of 
said act. The lands received by Wisconsin 
under said act of Congress, and conferred upon 
the State University for the support of an agri- 
cultural college, amounted to 240,000 acres, 
making a total of 322,160 acres of land donated 
to this State by the general government for the 
endowment and support of this institution. Up 

to the time of its re-organization, the University 
had not received one dollar from the State or 
from any municipal corporation. In pursuance 
of a law passed in 1866, Dane county issued 
bonds to the amount of $40,000 for the pur- 
chase of about 200 acres of land contiguous to 
the University grounds for an experimental 
farm, and for the erection of suitable buildings 
thereon. The next winter the Legislature passed 
a law which appropriated annually for ten years 
to the income of the University Fund, $7,308.76, 
that being the interest upon the sum illegally 
taken from the fund by the law of 1862 to pay 
for the erection of buildings. 

In 1870 the Legislature appropriated $50,000 
for the erection of a female college, which is 
the first contribution nyade outright to the up- 
building of any institution of learning in this 
State. In order to comply with the law grant- 
ing lands for the support of agricultural colleges, 
the University was compelled to make large 
outhiys in tilting up laboratories and purchas- 
ing the apparatus necessary for instruction and 
practical advancement in the arts immediately 
connected with the industrial interests of the 
State, a burden which the Legislature very gen- 
erously shared by making a further annual ap- 
propriation in 1872 of $10,000 to the income of 
the University Fund. The increased facilities 
offered by improvements in the old and by the 
erection of a new college building proved 
wholly inadequate to meet the growing wants 
of the institution. In its report for 1874, the 
board of visitors said: "A hall of natural sci- 
ences is just now the one desideratum of the Uni- 
versity. It can never do the work it ought to do, 
the work the State expects it to do, without 
some speedily increased facilities." 'J he Leg- 
islature promptly responded to this demand, 
and at its next session appropriated $80,000 for 
the erection of a building for scientific pur- 
poses. In order to permanently provide for de- 
ficiencies in the University Fund income, and to 
establish the institution upon a firm and endur- 
ing foundation, the Legislature of 1876 enacted 



"That there shall be levied and collected for 
the year 1876 and annually thereafter, a State 
tax of one-tenth of one mill for each dollar of 
the assessed valuation of the taxable property of 
this State, and the amount so levied and col- 
lected is hereby appropriated to the University 
Fund income, to be used as a part thereof." 
This is in lieu of all other appropriations for 
the benefit of this fund, and all tuition fees for 
students in the regular classes are abolished by 
this act. 

'I'he fourth section of the act of 187(5, to per- 
manently provide for deficiencies in the Uni- 
versity Fund income, is as follows: "From and 
out of the receipts of said tax, the sum of$!3,000 
annually shall be set apart for astronomical 
work and for instruction in astronomy, to be 
expended under the direction of the regents of 
the University of Wisconsin, as soon as a com- 
plete and well equipped observatory shall be 
given the University, on its own grounds with- 
out cost to the State: Provided, that such ob- 
servatory shall be completed within three years 
from the passage of this act." The astronomi- 
cal observatory whose construction was provided 
for by tliis act, was erected by the wise liber- 
ality of ex-Gov. Washburn. It is a beautiful 
stone building, finely situated and well fitted 
for its work. Its length is eighty feet, its 
breadth forty-two feet, and its height forty- 
eight feet. Over the door to the rotunda is a 
marble tablet bearing this inscription: "Erected 
and furnished, A. D. 1878, by the munificence 
of Cadwalladcr C. Washburn, and by him pre- 
sented to the University of Wisconsin; a tribute 
to general science. In recognition of this gift, 
this tablet is inserted by the regents of the 
University." The telescope has a sixteen inch 
object-glass. The size is a most desirable one 
for the great mass of astronomical work. In 
1881 a students' observatory was erected and a 
wing was added to the east side of the Wash- 
burn observatory. 

In the fall of 1848 there was a Presidential 
election. There were then three organized 

jjolitical parties in the State — whig, democrat 
and free-soil, each having a ticket in the field ; 
but the democrats were in the majority. The 
successful electors for that year and for each 
four years since that date, were as follows : 

184S. Elected November 7. 

Al Large — Fiancis Huebschmann. 

Wm. Dunwiddie. 
First District— David P. Maples 
Second District — Samutl F. Nichlos. 

1852. Elected November a. 

At Large — Montgomery M. Cothren. 

Satierlee Clark. 
First District— Phllo White. 
Second District — Beriah Brown. 
Third District — Charles Billinghurst. 

1856. Elected November 4. 

At Large— Edward D. Holton. 

James H. Knowlton. 
First District— Gregor Mencel. 
Second District— Waller D. Mclndoe. 
Third District— Bille Williams. 

I860. Elected November 6. 

At Large— Walter D. Mclndoe. 

Bradford Rixford. 
Kirst District — William W, Vaughan. 
Second District — J. Allen Barber. 
Third District — Herman Lindeman. 

1864. Elected November 8. 

.\tLarge— William W. Field 

Henry L. Blood. 
First District — George C. Northrop. 
Second District — Jonathan Bowman. 
Tliird District — Allen Warden. 
Fourth District — Henry J. Turner. 
Fifth Di.stricl— Henry F. Belitz. 
Sixth District — Alexander S. McDill. 

1868. Elected November 3. 

At Largi— Stephen S. Ilailow. 
Henry D. Barron. 



First District— Elihu Enos. 
Second District— Charles Q. Williams. 
Third District — AUeu Warden. 
Fourth District — Leander F. Frisby. 
Fifth District— Williiira G. Ritch. 
Sixth District— William T. Price. 

18'72. Elected November 5. 

At Large — William E. Ci'amer. 
Frederick Fleischer. 
First District — Jerome S. Nickles. 
Second District — George G. Swain. 
Third District — Ormsby B. Thomas. 
Fourth District — Frederick Hilgen. 
Fifth District— Edward C. McFetridge. 
Sixth District — George E. Hoskinson. 
Seventh District — RomanzoBunn. 
Eighth District — Henry D. Barron. 

1876. Elected November 7. 

At Large — William H. Hiner. 
Francis Campbell. 
First District— T D. Weeks. 
Second District — T. D.Lang. 
Tbird District — Daniel L. Downs. 
Fourth District — Casper M. Sanger. 
Fifth District — Charles Luling. 
Sixth District — J.ames H. Foster. 
Seventh District— Charles B. Solberg. 
Eighth District — John H. Knapp . 

1880. Elected November 2. 

At Large — George End. 

Knud Langland. 
First District — Lucius S. Blake. 
Second District — John Kellogg. 
Third District— George E. Weatherby. 
Fourth District — William P. McLaren. 
Fifth District— C. T. Lovell. 
Sixth District — E. L Browne. 
Seventh District— F. H. Kribbs. 
Eighth District — JohnT. Kingston. 

The popular vote cast for President at each 
of the Presidential elections in Wisconsin, and 

the electoral vote cast for each successful can- 
didate, were as follows : 






Zachary Taylor 

Lewis Cass 

Martin Van Buren. . . . 
Franklin Pierce 

Winfield Scott 

John P. Hale. . 

James Buchanan 

John C. Fremont. . . . 

Milhiril Fillmore 

Abraham Lincoln 

John C. Breckinridge. 

John Bell 

8. A. Douglas 

Abraham Lincoln 

Geo B, McClellan 

Ulyspcs S. Grant 

Horatio Sey.nour 

Ulysses S, Grant 

Horace Greeley 

Charles O'Connor. . . . 
Rutherford B. Hayes... 

Samuel J Tilden 

Peter Cooper 

G C. Smith 

James A Garfield . . . . 

Winfield S. Hancock. 

J. B. Weaver 

Neal Dow 

J B. Phelps 

















The act of the first Legislature of the State, 
exempting a homestead from forced sale on 
any debt or liability contracted after Jan. 1, 
18+9, and another act exempting certain per- 
sonal property, were laws the most liberal in 
their nature passed by any State in the Union 
previous to that time. Other acts were passed 
— such as were deemed necessary to put the 
machinery of the State government in all its 
branches, in fair running order. And, by the 
second Legislature (1849) were enacted a num- 
ber of laws of public utility. Tlie statutes were 
revised, making a volume of over 900 pages. 
The year 1848 was one of general prosperity to 
the rapidly increasing population of the State ; 
and that of 1849 developed in an increased 
ratio its productive capacity in every depart- 
ment of labor. The agriculturist, tlie arti.san, 



tlie miner, reaped the well-earned reward of 
his honest, labor. The commercial and manu- 
facturing interests were extended in a manner 
highly creditable to the enterprise of the people. 
The educational interests of the Stale began to 
assume a more systematic organization. Tlie 
tide of immigration suffered no decrease during 
the year. Within the limits of Wiscon- 
sin, the oppr.ssed of other climes continued to 
find welcome and happy homes. There were 
many attractions for emigrants from the Old 
World, especially from northern Europe — from 
Germany, Norway, Sweden and Denmark ; 
also from Ireland and England. 

Till' third Legislature changed the January 
term of the supreme court to December and or- 
ganized a sixth judicial circuit. The first 
charitable institution in Wisconsin, incorporated 
by the State, was the "Wisconsin Institute lor 
the Education of the Blind." A school for 
that unfortunate class had been opened in Janes- 
ville, in the latter part of 1S49, receiving ils 
support from the citizens of that place and 
vicinity. By an act of the Legislature, approved 
Feb. 9, 1850, this school was taken under the 
care of the Institute, to continue and maintain 
it, at .lanesville, and to qualify, as far as might 
be, the blind of the State for the enjoyment of 
the blessings of a free government; for obtain- 
ing the means of subsistence; and for the <lis- 
cliarge of those duties, social and political, 
devolving upon American citizens. It has since 
been supported from the treasury of the State. 
On the 7th of October, 1850, it was opened for 
the reception of pupils, under the direction of a 
board of trustees appointed by the governor. 
The other charitable institutions of the State 
are the State Hospital for the Insane, located 
near Madison, and opened for patients in July, 
1800; Northern Hospital for the Insane, located 
near Oshkosh, to which patients were first ad- 
mitted in April, 1873, and the Institution for 
the Deaf and Dumb, located at Delavan, in 
Walworth county. 

The entire length of the building of the Wis- 
consin State Hospital for the Insane, situated 
on the north shore of Lake Mendota, in Dane 
county, is 569 feet, the center building being 
65x120 feet. The first longitudinal wing on 
each side of the center is 132 feet, and the 
on each extremity i» 119 feet. The transverse 
wings are eighty-seven feel long. This com- 
modious building is surrounded by ornamental 
grounds, woods and farming lands, to the extent 
of 393 acres, and is well adapted for the care 
of the unfortunate needing its protection. In 
1879, additional room for 180 patients was 
added, by converting the old chapel into wards, 
and by the addition of cross wings in front of 
the old building. The hospital will now accom- 
modate comfortably 550 patients. In 1870 a law 
was passed authorizing the erection of the build- 
ing for the Northern Hospital, on a tract, con- 
sisting of 337 acres of land, about four miles 
north of the city of Oshkosh on the west shore 
of Lake Winnebago. The necessary appropri- 
ations were made, and the north wing and central 
building were completed. Further appro) ri- 
ations were made from time to time for addi- 
tional wings, and in 1875 the hospital was coih- 
pleled according to the original design, at a 
total cost to the State of $625,250. The build- 
ing has been constructed on the most approved 
])lan, and is suited to accomodate CUO patients. 

The land first occupied by the V\ isconsin 
Institution for the Deaf and Dumb, comprising 
11 46-100 acres, was donated by Hon. F. K. 
Phoenix, one of the first trustees, but the 
original boundaries have since been enlarged 
by the purchase of twenty-two acres. The main 
building was burned to the ground on the 16th 
of September, ls79; but during the year I88(i 
four new buildings were erected, and with the 
increased facilities provided, 250 children may 
be well cared for. The new buildings are a 
school house, boys' dormitory, dining-room ami 
chapel, with a main or administration building. 
These buildings are plain, neat, substantial 
structures, and well fitted for the uses intended. 



The Institution was originally a private school 
for the deaf, but was incorporated by act of the 
Legislature, April 19, 1S52. It designs to educate 
that portion of the children and youth of the 
State, who, on account of deafness, cannot be 
educated in the public schools. Instruction is 
given by signs, by written language, and by 
articulation. In the primary department few 
books are used, slates, pencils, crayons, pictures, 
blocks and other illustrative apparatus being the 
means employed. In the intermediate depart- 
ment the books used are prepared especially for 
the deaf and dumb; more advanced pupils study 
text-books used in our common schools. The 
shoe shop commenced business in 186'Z;the print- 
ing office in 1878, and the bakery in 1881. The 
law provides that all deaf and dumb residents 
of the State of the age of ten years and under 
twenty-live, of suitable age and capacity to 
receive instruction, shall be received and taught 
free of charge for board and tuition, but 
parents and guardians are expected to furnish 
clothing and pay traveling expenses. 

The taking of the census by the United 
State, this year, 1850, showed a population for 
Wisconsin of 305,391 — the astonishing increase 
in two years of nearly 95,000. Many, as already 
stated, were German, Scandinavian and Irish; 
but the larger proportion were,of course, from the 
Eastern and Middle States of the Union. The 
principal attractions of Wisconsin were the 
excellency and cheapness of its lands, its valu- 
able mines of lead, it« extensive forests of pine, 
and the unlimited water-power of its numerous 
streams. In 1860 the population had increased 
to 775,881; in 1870 to 1,054,670, and in 1880 to 
1,315,480. By an act of the fourth Legislature 
of the State, approved March 14, 1851, the loca- 
tion and erection of a State prison for Wiscon- 
sin was provided for, Waupim, Dodge county, 
being afterwards the point selected for it. The 
office of State prison commissioner was created 
in 1853, but was abolished in 1874. During 
that time the following persons held the office: 
John Taylor, from March 28, 1853 to April 2, 

1853; Henry Brown, from April 2, 1853 to Jan. 
2, 1854; Argalus W. Starks, from Jan. 2, 1854 
to Jan. 7, 1856; Edward McGarry, from Jan 7, 
1856 to Jan 4, 1858; Edward M. MacGraw, from 
Jan. 4, 1858 to Jan. 2, 1860; Hans C. Heg, from 
Jan. 2, I860 to Jan. 6, 1862; Alexander P. Hod- 
ges, from Jan 6, 1862 to Jan. 4, 1864; Henry 
Cordier, from Jan 4, 1864 to Jan. 3, 1870; 
George F. Wheeler, from Jan. 3, 1870 to Jan. 
4, 1874. The State (Law) Library had its 
origin in the generous appropriation of $5, 000 out 
ot tlie general treasury, by Congress, contained 
in the seventeenth section of the organic act 
creating the territory of Wisconsin. At the 
first session of the territorial Legislature, held 
at Belmont in 1836, a joint resolution was 
adopted appointing a committee to select and 
purchase a library for the use of the territory. 
The iirst appropriation by the State, to replenish 
the library, was made in 1851. Since that time, 
several appropriations have been made. The 
number of volumes in the library at the begin- 
ning of 1883 was 16,285. 

The fifth Legislature — the Assembly, wiiig, 
the Senate, democratic — passed an act authoriz- 
ing banking. This was approved by the gover- 
nor, L. J. Farwell, April 19, 1S52. The ques- 
tion of "bank or no bank" having been sub- 
mitted to the people in November previous, and 
decided in favor of banks; the power was thereby 
given to the Legislature of 1852 to grant bank 
charters or to pass a general banking law. By 
the act just mentioned, the office of bank comp- 
troller was created, but was abolished by an 
act of Jan. 3, 187(i. During the continumce of 
the law, the following persons filled the office, 
at the time given; James S. Baker, from Nov. 
20, 1852 to Jan. 2, 1854; William M. Dennis, 
from Jan. 2, 1854 to Jan. 4, 1858; Joel C. 
Squires, from Jan. 4, 1858 to Jan 2, 1860; Gys- 
bert Van Steenwyk, from Jan 2, 1860 to Jan. 6, 
1862; William H. Ramsey, from Jan 6, I.s62 to 
Jan. 1, 186C; Jeremiah M. Rusk, from Jan . 1, 
1866 to Jan. 3, 1870. The sixth Wisconsin 
Legislature commenced its session, as we have 



seen, Jan. 13, 1853. On the 26th of that month 
charges were preferred in the Assembly against 
Levi Hubbelljjudge of the second circuit court, for 
divers acts of corruption and malfeasance in 
office. A resolution directed a committee to go 
to the Senate and impeach Hubbell. On tlie 
trial he was acquitted. By an act of tlie same 
Legislature, the State Agricultural Society was 
incorporated. Since its organization the society 
has printed a number of volumes of transactions, 
and has held, except during the civil war, 
annual fairs. Its aid to the agricultural interests 
of the State are clearly manifest. Farming, in 
Wisconsin, is confined at the present time to 
the south half of the Slate, the northern half 
being still largely covered by forests. The 
surface of the agricultural portion is, for the 
most part, gently undulating, consisting largely 
of prairies alternating with "oak openings." 
The Slate is essentially a grain-growing one, 
though stock-raising and dairy farming are 
rajiidly gaining in importance. Wheat, the 
staple product of Wisconsin, is gradually losing 
its prestige as the farmer's sole dependence, 
and mixed farming is coming to the front. 
About twenty bushels of wheat are raised 
annually to each inhabitant of the State. Mucli 
more attention is now paid to fertilizers than 
formerly, clover and |)laster being looked upon 
with constantly increasing favor. While within 
the last ten years stock-raising has been a grow- 
ing interest, yet it has not been a rapid one; 
not so, however, with dairying — no other 
agricultural interest has kept pace with this. 
The principal markets for the farm products of 
Wisconsin are Milwaukee and Chicago. 

By an act approved March 4, 185.3, the State 
Historical Society was incorporated, it having 
been previously organized. The society is 
under the fostering care of the State, each Leg- 
islature voting a respectable sum for its benefit. 
It has published a number of volumes of "Col 
lections"' and of catalogues. Its rooms are in 
the Capitol at Madison, where are to be found 
its library of historical books and pamplilets, 

the largest in the northwest. On the 21st 
of September, 1853, Timothy Burns, lieu- 
tenant-governor of the State, died at La Crosse. 
As a testimonial of respect for the deceased, 
the several State departments, in accordance 
with a proclamation of Gov. Farwell, were 
closed for one day, October 3. The year 1850, 
to the agriculturalist, was not one of much pros- 
perity in Wisconsin, owing to the partial 
failure of the wheat crop. The State was vis- 
ited during the year by cholera, not, however, 
to a very alarming extent. In 1851 the State 
was prosperous. In 1852 the citizens of Wis- 
consin enjoyed unusual prosperity. There were 
abundant harvests and high markets; an increase 
of money and a downward tendency of the rates 
of interest. The next year (1853) was also one 
in which every branch of industry prospered. 
There was an especial increase in commerce 
and manufactures. And here it might be said 
that next to agriculture the most important 
pursuit in Wisconsin is manufacturing; fore- 
most in this interest is lumber, of whicli the 
pineries furnish the raw material. The pine 
region extends through the northern counties of 
the State from Green Bay to the St. Croix river. 
The demand for lumber is constantly increas- 
ing, while the facilities for its manufacture are 
continually enlarging. Over one billion feet of 
logs are cut annually. The lumber mills have 
a capacity exceeding one and one-half billion 
feet. The products of these find their way to 
market, either by the Mississippi and its tribu- 
taries, by the various lines of railways, or 
through the great lakes. The other leading 
articles of manufacture are flour, agricultural 
impleiTients and malt liquors. 

The fourth administration — William A. Bar- 
stow, governor — was signalized by a fugitive 
slave case, which greatly excited the people of 
Wisconsin. Sherman M. Booth, for assisting 
in the rescue of Joshua Glover, a fugitive slave, 
was arrested, but discharged by the supreme 
court. He was again arrested under an indict- 
ment in the L^nited States district court, and a 



second time discharged by the supreme eourt; 
but the supreme court of the United States 
reversed the action of the State court in its 
second discharge of Booth, and he was re- 
arrested in 1860; the sentence of the district 
court was executed in part upon him, when he was 
pardoned by tlie President. The eighth Legis- 
lature of the State (Jan. 10 — April 2, 1855), 
passed an act very liberal in its provisions rela- 
tive to the rights of married women. On 
the 2'7th of June, 1855, Hiiam A. Wright, 
superintendent of public instruction, died at 
Prairie du Chien. The State census, taken in 
this year (1855), showed a population of 552,- 
109. In 1865, the number had increased to 
868,325; in 1875, to 1,236,729. Industrial occu- 
pations in Wisconsin were prosperous during 
the years 1854 and 1855. The fifth administra- 
tion began with William A. Barstow in the 
executive chair, by virtue of a certificate from 
the board of canvassers, that he had been a 
second time elected governor by a majority (as 
previously shown) of 157. But this certificate 
was set aside by the supreme court, giving the 
office to Coles Bashford, not, however, until 
Barstow had resigned, and Arthur McArthur, 
acting, by virtue of his office of lieutenant-gov- 
ernor, as governor from March 21, to March 25, 
1856. A dry season during this year dimin- 
ished the wheat crop. The tenth Legislature of 
Wisconsin— Jan. 14 to March 9, 1857 — passed 
an act establishing at Waukesha a house of 
refuge for juvenile delinquents, afterwards 
called the State Reform School; now known as 
the Wisconsin Industrial School for boys. It 
was opened in 1860. Tlie buildings are located 
on the southern bank of Fox river, in view of 
the trains as they pass to and from Milwaukee 
and Madison, presenting an attractive front to 
the traveling public, and furnishing the best 
evidence of the parental care of the State 
authorities for the juvenile wards within its 
borders. The buildings include a main central 
building, three stories high, used for the resi- 
dence of the superintendent's family, office 

chapel, school rooms, reading room and library, 
officers kitchen, dining room, and lodging, fur- 
nace room and cellar. On the east of the main 
central building are three family buildings, 
three stories high, each with dining hall, 
play room, bath room, dressing room, hospi- 
tal room, officers' rooms, dormitory and store 
room. On the west of the main central 
building are four family buildings like those 
on the east in all respects, witK the exception 
of the building at the west end of this line, 
which is a modern building with stone base- 
ment. In the rear of this line of buildings is 
the shop building, 38x258 feet, three stories 
high, which embrace boot factory, sock and 
knitting factory, tailor shop, carpenter shop, 
engine room, laundry and steam dyeing room, 
bath rooms, store, store rooms, bakery and cel- 
lar. The correction house, 44x80 feet, (intended 
for the most refractory boys) and will accommo- 
date forty; a double family building 38x1 17 
feet for the accommodation of two families 
of boys of fifty each. There is on the farm, 
which consists of. 233 acres of land, a com- 
fortable house, a stone carriage and horse Itarn 
two stories high, Iniilt in the most substantial 

The constitution of the State, adopted in 1848, 
provides, "that the revenue of the school fund 
shall be exclusively applied to the following 
objects: "1st. To the support and maintenance 
of bommon schools in each school district, and 
the purchase of suitable libraries and appurte- 
nances therefor. "2d. That the residue of the 
income of the school fund shall be approj)riated 
to the support of academies and normal schools, 
and suitable libraries and appurtenances there 
for." No effort was made to take advantage of 
this provision of the constitution for the endow- 
ment of normal schools until 1857, when an act 
was passed providing "that the income of twen- 
ty-five per cent, of the proceeds arising from the 
sale of swamp and overflowed lands should be 
appropriated to normal institutes and academies, 
under the supervision and direction of a " 'board 



of regents of normal schools,' " who were to 
be appointed in pursuance of tlie provisions of 
tliat act. Under this law, the income placed at 
the disposal of the regents was distributed for 
several j'ears to such colleges, academies and 
high schools as maintained a normal class, and 
in ])roportion to the number of pupils in the 
class who passed satisfactory examinations, con- 
ducted by an agent of the board. In J 805, the 
Legislature divided the swamp lands and swamp 
land fuiul into two equal i)arts, one for drain- 
age purposes, the other to constitute a noimai 
school fund. The income of the latter was to 
be applied to establishing, supporting and main- 
taining normal schools, under the direction and 
management of the board of regents of normal 
schools, with a proviso that one-fourth of such 
income should be transferred to the common 
school fund, until the annua! income of that 
fund should reach ?i:i(K),0O0. During the satne 
year, proposals were invited for extending aid 
in the establishment of a normal school, and 
[)ropositions were received from various places. 
In 1860, the board of regents was incor[)o- 
rated by the Legislature. In February, Platte- 
ville was conditionally selected as the site of a 
school, and as it had become apparent that a 
productive fund of al>out $600,000, with a net 
income of over #.'50,000, was already in hand, 
with a prospect of a steady increase as fast as 
lands were sold, the' board, after a careful in- 
vestigation and consideration of the different 
methods, decided upon the policy of establish- 
ing several schools, and of locating them in 
different pArts of the State. At a meeting held 
on the 2d day of 'May, in the same year, the 
board designated Whitewater as the site of a 
school for the southeastern section of the State, 
where a building was subsequently erected; and 
on the 16th permanently located a school at 
Plalteville, the academy building having been 
donated for that purpose. The school at Plalte- 
ville was opened Oct. 9, 1866. Tiie school at 
Whitewater was opened on the 2!st of April, 

A building was completed during the year 
1870 for a third normal school, at Oshkosh, hut 
owing to a lack of funds, it v>a> not opened for 
the admission of pupils during that year. The 
opening and the ceremony of dedicating the build- 
ing took place Sept. 10, 1871. A fourth normal 
school was opened in September, 1875, at River 
FaMs, Pierce county. It is understood to be the 
policy of the board of regents to establish 
eventually, when the means at their disposal 
shall permit, not less than six normal schools, 
but several years must elapse before so many 
can go into operation. The law under which 
these schools are organized provides that "The 
exclusive purpose of each normal school shall 
be the instruction and training of persons, both 
male and female, in the theory and art of teach- 
ing, and in all the various branches that per- 
tain to a good common school education, and in 
all subjects needful to qualify for teaching in 
the public schools; also to give instruction in 
the fundamental laws of the United States and 
of this State, and in what regards the rights and 
duties of citizens." 

Subsidiary to the State normal schools are 
teachers' institutes, held annually in nearly 
every settled county, and the State teachers' 
association, which has been organized for .-i 
quarter of a century. Besides the public schools 
of the State, there are a number of denoniina- 
lional and other colleges, the principal of which 
are Racine College, Beloit College, Milton Col- 
lege, Rii)on College, Carroll College, at Wau- 
kesha; Lawrence University, at Appleton; St. 
John's College, at Prairie du Chien; (ialesville 
University; Northwestern University, at Water- 
town; and Pio Nono College, at St. Francis 
Station, south of Milwaukee. There is also 
quite a large number of incorporated academies 
and seminaries, the more prominent ones being 
the Milwaukee Academy and St. Mary's Insti- 
tute, at Milwaukee; Kemper Hall, at Kenosha; 
St. Catharine's Academy, at Racine; Rochester 
Seminaiy, Lake (ieneva Seminary, Fox Lake 
Seminary, Albion Academy, Elroy Seminary, 



Wayland Institute, at Beaver Dam, and Santa 
Clara Academy, at Sinsinawa Mound. There 
are also about 700 private schools in Wisconsin. 
The whole number of children in Wisconsin 
between four and twenty vears of age is 483,071 ; 
the number of pupils in attendance in public 
schools, 299,019. The aggregate valuation of 
school property in the State is ^(5,297,678.24. 

The sixth administration, Alexander W. 
Randall, governor, was noted for its "long jiar- 
liament," the eleventh Legislalure of the State 
having been in session 125 days. A report of 
commissioners previously a)>pointed to revise 
tlie statutes, was acted upon during tlie session, 
the result being the publication, in one volume, 
of the "Revised Statutes of 1858." The 
twelfth Legislature (.Jan. 12, to March 21, 1859) 
was, like the two previous Legistatures, republi- 
can. At the commencement of the seventh ad- 
ministration, Randall's second term as gov- 
ernor, that party not only had control of the 
tliirteenth Legislature, butof all ihe State offices. 
The governor, in his message to the fourteenth 
Legislature, on the 10th of January, 1861, de 
clared that the right of a State to secede from 
the I'^nion, could never be admitted. " The gov- 
ernment must be sustained, the laws shall be en- 
forcedP'' An extra session of the Legislature 
was convened on the 15th of May, at which, no 
acts were passed except such as appertained to 
the military exigencies of the times. Mean- 
while a demand made upon the governor by the 
President, for troops to sustain the federal arm, 
met with a quick response. During the year, 
9,991 men, in ten regiments, for three years' 
service, and one regiment for three months 
service, of 810 men, were sent out of the State. 
The number of volunteers originally in the sev- 
eral military organizations, from Wisconsin 
during the war, were as follows: 

First Infantry, three months 810 

First Infantry, three years 945 

Second Infantry, three years 1051 

Third Infantry, three years 979 

Fifth Infantry, three years 1058 

Sixth Infantry, three years 1108 

Seventh Infantry, three years 1029 

Eighth Infantry, three years 973 

Ninth Infantry, * three years 870 

Ti nth Infnntry, three years 916 

Elevenili Infanlry, threeyears 1029 

TvvelfiU Infantiy, three years 1045 

Thirteenth Infant'y,* three years 970 

Fourteenth Infantry, three years 970 

Fifteenth Infiintry, three years 801 

Sixteentl' Infanlry, three years 1066 

Seventeenth Irfantry, threeyears 941 

Eighteenth Infantrj^, three years 962 

Nineteenth Infantry, threeyears 973 

Twentieth Infantry, three years 990 

Twenty-first Infantry, thre» years 1002 

Twenty-second Infantry, three years 1009 

Twenty-third Infantry, three years 994 

Twenty fourth Infantry, three years 1008 

Tweniy-fiflh Infantry, three years 1018 

Twenty-sixth Infantry, threeyears 1002 

Twenly-seventh Infantiy, three years 865 

Twenty-eighth Infantry, threeyears 961 

Twenty-ninth Infantry, three years 961 

Thirtieth Infantry, three years 906 

Thirty-first Infantry, three years 878 

Thirty-second Infantry, threeyears 993 

Thirty-third Infantry, three years 892 

Thiriyfourth Infantry, nine months 961 

Thirty-fifth Infantry, * threeyears 1066 

Thirty sixth Infantry, threeyears 990 

Thirty-seventh Infantry, one, two and threeyears 708 

Thirty-eighth Infantry, one, two and three years. 913 

Thirty-ninth Infantry, one hundred days 780 

Fortieth Infantry, one hundred days 776 

Forty (it si Infantry, one hundred days -578 

Forty-second Infantry, one year 877 

Fortj-lhird Infantry, one year 867 

Forty fourth Infantry, one year 877 

Forty fifth Infantry, one year 859 

Forty-si.\ih Infantry, one year 914 

Forty-S' yenth Infantry, one year 927 

Forty-eighth Infant: y, one year 828 

Forty-ninth Infantry, one year 986 

Fiftieth Infantry, one year 942 

Fifty-first Infantry, one year 841 

Fifty-second Infantry, one year 486 

Fifty third Infantry, one year 380 

First Cavalry, threeyears 1134 

Second Cavaliy, three years 1127 

Third Cavalry, threeyears 1186 

FourihC.ivalry, threeyears 1047 

Milwaukee 83 

•Nov. 1, 1865. 



First Battery Light Artillery t55 

Second Battery Light Artillery 153 

Tliiid Buttery Light Artilleiy l?" 

Fotirlli Battery Light Ani.lery 151 

Fifth Buttery Lisiht Artillery 155 

Sixth Battery Light Artillery 157 

Seventh Battery Light Artillery 158 

Eighth Battery Light Artillery 161 

Ninth Battery Light A rtillery 155 

Tenth Battery Light Artillery 47 

Eleventh Battery Light Artillery 87 

Twelfth Battery Light Artillery 99 

Thirteenth Battery Light Artillery 156 

Battery A, Heavy Artillery 1-9 

Battery B, Heavy Artillery 149 

Battery C, Heavy Artillery 146 

B:iltery D, Heavy Artillery 146 

Battery E, Heavy Artillery 151 

Battery F, Heavy Artillery 151 

Battery G, Heavy Artillery 152 

Battery H, Heavy Artillery 151 

Battery I, Heavy Artillery 150 

Battery K, Heavy Artillery 148 

Battery L, Heavy Artillery 152 

Battery M, Heavy Artillery 152 

Sharpshooter" 105 

Oibbons' Brigade Band 13 

Oil the 10th of April, 1802, Gov. Louis P. 
Harvey, the successor of AlexamlerW. Randall, 
started, along with others, from Wisconsin on 
a tour to relieve the wounded and suffering 
soldiers from this State, at Mound City, Padu- 
cah and i^avannah. Having completed his 
mission, he made preparations to return. He 
went on board a boat, the Dunleith, at ihe 
landing in Savannah, and there awaited the ar- 
rival of the Minnehaha, which was to convey him 
and his party to Cairo, 111. It was late in the 
evening of the 19th of April when the steamer 
arrived; and as she rounded to, her bow touched 
the Dunleith precipitating the governor into 
tbe^ river. Every effort was made to save his 
life, but in vain. His body was afterward re- 
covered and brought home for interment. 

Edward Salomon, lieutenant-governor, by 
virtue of a provision of the constitution of the 
Stale, succeeded to the office of governor, 'i'lie 
enlisting, organization and mustering into the 
United States service during Randall's adminis- 

tration of thirteen regiments of infantry — the 
First to the Thirteenth inclusive, and the march- 
ing of ten of them out of the State before the 
close of 1R61, also, of one company of cavalry 
and one conijiany of sharpshooters constittited 
the effective aid abroad of Wisconsin during 
that year to suppress the Rebellion. Hut for the 
year 1862, this aid, as to number of organiza- 
tions, was more than doubled. At the end of 
the year 1863 thirty-three regiments left the 
State — tlic Thirteenth regiment being the only 
remaining one of the thirty-four in Wisconsin. 
The ninth administration, James T. Lewis, gov- 
ernor, saw the close of the Rebellion. On the 
10th of April, 1865, Lewis announced to the 
Legislature, then in session, the surrender of 
Gen. Lee and his army. 

Fifty-three regiments during the war were 
raised in Wisconsin, all, sooner or later, mov- 
ing south and engaging in one way or other in 
suppressing the Rebellion. Twelve of these 
regiments were assigned to duty in the eastern 
division, which constituted the territory on both 
sides of the Potomac and upon the seaboard 
from Baltimore to Savannah. Tiiese twelve 
regiments were: 

The First (three months). Second, Third, 
Fourth, Fifth, Sixth, Seventh, Nineteenth, 
Twenty-sixth, Thirty-si.vth, Thirty-seventh and 

Ten regiments were assigned to the central 
division, including Kentucky, Tennessee, 
Northern Alabama and Georgia. 'I'liese ten 

The Tenth, Twenty-first, Twenty-second, 
Twenty-fourth, Thirtieth, Forty-third, Forty- 
fourth, Forty-fifth, Forty-si.\tli and l<"orty- 
scventh. Added to these was the First (re-or- 

Thirty-one regiments were (nilored to the 

western division, embraci g the country west 

and northwest of the central division. These 


Eighth, NintI', Eleventh, Twelfth, Thirteenth, 

; Fourteenth, Fifteenth, Sixteenth, Seventeenth, 



Eighteenth, Twentieth, Twenty-third, Twenty- 
fifth, Twenty-seventh, Twenty-eighth, Twenty- 
ninth, Thirty-first, Thirty-second, Thirty-third, 
Thirty-fourth, Thirty-fiftli, Thirty-nintii, For- 
tieth, Forty-first, Forty-second, Forty-eighth, 
Forty-ninth, Fiftieth, Fifty -first, Fifty-second 
and Fifty-third. 

During the war several transfers were made 
from one district to another. Tliere were taken 
from the eastern division the Thiri and Twenty- 
sixth and sent to the central division; also the 
Fourth, which was sent to the department of 
the gulf. The Twelfth, Thirteenth, Fifteenth, 
Sixteenth, Seventeenth, Eighteenth, 'J"»enty- 
fifth. Thirtieth, Thirty-first and Thirty-.second 
were transferred from the western to the cen- 
tral department. The other niilitai'y organiza- 
tions from Wisconsin had various assignments 
Recruiting ceased in the State on the l.'ith of 
April, 1865. It was not many months before 
Wisconsin's last soldier was mustered out of 
service. The State furnished during the war 
over 75,000 men, of which number nearly 1 1,000 
died in the service. 

Among all the noble women wlio gave them- 
selves to the sanitary work of the civil war 
perhaps few were more peculiarly fitted for 
forming and carrying out plans than Mrs. C. A. 
P. Jlarvey, widow of the late lamented Gov. 
Louis P. Harvey. She was appointed by Gov. 
Salomon one of the sanitary agents of the 
State. She soon procured the establishment of 
a convalesent hospital at Madison, Wis. The 
building when no longer needed as a hospital, 
ISJ IS. Harvey conceived the idea of having it con- 
verted into a home for soldiers' orphans. On 
Jan. 1, 1866, the home was opened with eighty- 
four orphans, Mrs. Harvey at the head. The 
necessary funds had been raised by subscription; 
but it soon became a State institution. The oi- 
phans were not only maintained but brought up 
to habits of industry. But it was not long be- 
fore the number of the inmates began to de- 
crease, owing to the fact that homes were found 
or many, while some were returned to their, 

mothers; none were kept in the institution after 
they had reached the age of fifteen. At length 
when the number had diminished to less than 
forty children, it was thought best to close the 
institution. This was in 1875. The whole 
number of orjihans cared for during the contin- 
uance of the heme was about 700. The Legisla- 
ture then transferred the building to the re- 
gents of the University of Wisconsin, who dis- 
posed of it; and a Norwegian seminary is now 
established therein. 

During the tenth administration, Lucius 
Fairchild, governor, the National Home for 
Disabled Volunteer Soldiers, the northwest- 
ern branch of the National institution, was es- 
tablished in Wisconsin, three miles from Mil- 
waukee. It has a capacious brick building, con- 
taining accommodations for 1,000 inmates. In 
addition to this building which contains the 
main halls, eating apartment, oftices, dormitory 
and engine room, are shops, granaries, stables 
and other out-buildings. The Home farm con- 
tains 410 acres, of which over one-half is culti- 
vated The remainder is a wooded park tra- 
versed by shaded walks and drives, beautifully 
undulating. The main line of the Chicago, 
Milwaukee & St. Paul Railroad runs through 
the farm, and the track of the northern division 
passes beside it. Soldiers who were disabled 
in the service of the United States in the War 
of the Rebellion, the Mexican War, or the War 
of 1812, and have been honorably discharged, 
are entit ed to admission to the Soldiers' Home. 

A law was passed in 1867 creating the oflice 
of insurance commissioner, the secretary of 
State being assigned to its duties. But, in 187S, 
it was made a distinct office, to be filled by the 
governor's appointment. It was, howevfr, 
made elective in 1881. Philip L. Spooner has 
served since April 1, 1878, and is still in oflice. 
The joint-slock fire insurance companies of Wis- 
consin are three in number, its mutual compa- 
nies also three. There is but one life insurance 
company in the State. A large number of fire 
and life insurance companies located outside of 



Wisconsin transact business under State law 
within its borders. 

Hiarly in 1870, during Gov. Fairchild's 
third term, was organized, and in March of 
that year incorporated, the "Wisconsin Acad- 
emy of Sciences, Arts and Letters," having 
among its .specific objects researches and inves- 
tigations in the various departments of the ma- 
terial, metaphysical, ethical, ethnological and 
social sciences; a progressive and thorough 
scientific survey of the State, with a view of 
determining its mineral, agricultural and other 
resources; the advancement of the useful arts, 
through the application of science and by the 
encouragement of original invention; the en- 
couragement of the fine arts by means of hon- 
ors and prizes awarded to artists for original 
works of superior merit; the formation of scien- 
tific, economical and art museums; the encour- 
agement of philological and historical research; 
the collection and preservation of historic rec- 
ords and the formation of a general library, 
and the diffusion of knowledge by the public i- 
tion of original contributions to science, liter- 
ature and the arts. The academy has already 
published several volumes of transactions, un- 
der authority of the State. On the 3d day of 
July of that year A. J. Craig, superintendent of 
public instruction, died of consumption, and 
on the 13th of January following occurred the 
<leath of associate justice, Byron Paine, of the 
supreme court. Al the twenty-fourth regular 
session of the Legislature (January 11 — March 
25, 1871,) a commissioner of emigration, to be 
elected i)y the people, was provided for. The 
office was abolished Jan. 3, 1876. During this 
time but two persons held the oflice — Ole C. 
Johnson, from April 3, 1871, to Jan. 5, 1S74; 
Martin J. Argard, from Jan. 5, 1874, to Jan. 3, 
1876. My an act of the Legislature, a|)])roved 
March 4, 1879, the board of immigration of the 
State of Wisconsin was created, to consist 
of five members, of which number two are 
ex-officio — the governor and secretary of State. 
The principal office is located in Milwaukee, 

with a branch office at Chicago. The object is 
to encourage imigration from Europe to Wis- 
consin. On the 23d of March, 1871, the State 
board of charities and reforms was created, to 
consist of five members to be appointed by the 
governor of the State, the duties of the mem- 
bers being to investigate and supervise the 
whole system of charitable and correctional in- 
stitutions supported by the State or receiving 
aid from the State treasury. This board have 
since reported annually to the governor their 
proceedings. The Wisconsin State horticultural 
Society, although previously organized, first un- 
der the name of the "Wisconsin Fruit Growers' 
Association," was not incorporated until the 
24th of .March, 1871 — the object of the society 
being to improve the condition of horticulture, 
rural adornment and landscape gardening. By 
a law of 1868 provision was made for the pub- 
lication of the society's transactions in connec- 
tion with the State Agricultural Society; but 
by the act of 1871 this law was repealed and an 
appro])riation made for their yearly publication 
in separate form. The society holds annual 
meetings at Madison. 

In October, 1871, occurred great fires in 
northeastern Wisconsin. The counties of 
Oconto, Brown, Kewaunee, Door, Manitowoc, 
Outagamie and Shawano suffered Tuore or less. 
More than 1,000 men, women and children per- 
ished. More than 3,ono were rendered destitute. 
The loss of property has been estimated at ^4.- 
000,000. No other calamity so awful in its results 
has ever visited Wisconsin. A compilation of 
the public statutes of the Stale was prepared 
during the year fs7l by David Taylor (now 
a-<sociate justice of the supreme court), and 
published in two volumes, known as the "He- 
vised Statutes of 1871." It was wholly a pri- 
! vate undertaking, but a very creditable one. 
I The Wisconsin Dairymen's Association origi- 
I nated in a resolution offered in the .Fefferson 
; County Dairymen's Association, .Ian. -Jii, IS72, 
] to issue a call for a meeting of Wisconsin 
I dairymen, to be held at Waterlown, Fel). 15, 


1872. A few gentlemen met and organized the 
Wise msin Dairymen's Association. The aim 
of the organization has been to secure improved 
methods of making butter and cheese and the 
best markets fur shipment and sale. ') he asso- 
ciation holds its annual meeting in January of 
each year for the discussion of the dairy inter- 
ests. Dairy fairs are lield at each meeting. 
There is printed annually by the State printer 
2,000 copies of the transactions of the associa- 
tion. The Legislature receives 600 copies, the 
State Historical Society, Academy of Sciences, 
Arts and Letters, State Agricultural Society 
and Northern Wisconsin Agricultural Associa- 
tion receive forty copies each; the remainder 
are distributed to tiie members of the associa- 
tion and generally over the State to all who 
make application for them. The association 
receives its support from members who join 
each year, paying the sum of $1, and by 
appropriations from the State. Wisconsin won 
first i)remium on butter in competition with the 
world; the second premium on Clieddar cheese 
(the first going to Canada), and the second on 
fancy shaped cheese at tlie International Dairy 
Fair, held in New York city in December, 187 7. 
To the D.iir} men's Association belongs the 
credit of raising tlie reputation of Wisconsin 
cheese and butter from tlie lowest to the high- 
est rank. 

On the 23d of Vlarcli, 1 67:}, Lieut.-Gov. 
Milton H. Pettitt died suddenly and unex- 
pectedly. Tiie Legislature this year pa.ssed an 
act providing for a geological survey of the 
State, to be completed within four years, by a 
chief geologist and four assistants, to be ap- 
pointed by the governor, appropriating for tlie 
work an annual payment of $13,000. An act, 
approved March 25, 1 8.5.3, authorized the gov- 
ernor to appoint a State geologist, who was to 
select a suitable ])er8on as assistant geologist. 
Under this law Edward Daniels, on the 1st day 
of April, 1853, was appointed State geologist, 
superseded on the 12th day of August, 1854, by 
James G. Percival, who died in office on the 2d 

of May, 1856. By an act approved March 3, 
! 857, James Hall, Ezra Carr and Edward Dan- 
iels were ajjpointed by the Legislature geolog- 
ical commissioners. By an act approved April 
2, 1860, Hall was made principal of the com- 
mission. The survey was interrupted by a re- 
peal March 2], 1862, of previous laws promoting 
it. However, to complete the survey, ihe mat- 
ter was re-instated by the act of this Legisla- 
ture, approved March 29, the governor, under 
that act, appointing as chief geologist Increase 
A. Lapham, April 10, 1873. On the 16th of 
February, 1875, O. W. Wight succeeded Lap- 
ham, but on the 2d of February, 1876, T. C. 
Chamberlain was appointed Wight's successor, 
and still holds the office. He has published 
four volumes of reports in a very able mannei, 
e.vlending from 1873 to 1879, inclusive. Re- 
ports were also published by his predecessors. 

And just here it may not be inappropriate to 
say a word concerning the physical history of 
Wisconsin. "This can be traced back with 
certainty to a state of complete submergence 
beneath the waters of the ancient ocean, by 
which the material of our oldest and deepest 
strata were deposited. Let an extensive but 
shallow sea, covering the wliole of the present 
territory of the State, be pictured to the mind, 
and let it be imagined to be depositing mud and 
sand, as at the present day, and we have before 
us the first authentic stage of the history under 
consideration. Back of that the history is lost 
in the mists of geologic antiquity. The thick- 
ness of the sediments that accumulated in that 
early period was immense, being measured by 
tliousands of feet. These sediments occupied, 
of course, an essentially horizontal position, and 
were doubtless in a large degree hardened into 
beds of impure sandstone, shale and other sedi- 
mentary rock. But in the progress of time an 
enormous pressure, attended by heat, was 
brought to bear upon them laterally, or edge- 
wise, by which they were folded and crumpled 
and forced up out of the water, giving rise to 
an island, the nucleus of Wisconsin. The force 



wliich produced this upheaval is believed to 
have arisen from the cooling and consequent 
contraction of the globe. .The foldings may be 
imagined as the wrinkles of a shrinking earth. 
But the contortion of the beds was a scarcely 
more wonderful result than the change in the 
characterof the rock which seems to have taken 
place simultaneously with the folding, indeed, 
as the result of the heat and pressure attending 
it. 'I'he sediments, that seem to have previously 
taken the form of impure sandstone and shale 
for the most part, underwent a change, in which 
re-arrangement and crystalization of the ingre- 
dients played a conspicuous part. By this met- 
amorphism granite, gneiss, mica schist, syenite, 
hornblende rocks, chloritic schists and other 
crystalline rocks were formed."* But to pur- 
sue further an inquiry into the geological struc- 
ture of the State would be foreign to this brief 
historical sketch of Wisconsin. The subject is 
ably treated of in the geological reports before 
referred to. 

The actual mineral resources of Wisconsin 
remain very largely to be developed, Its useful 
mineral material comes under the head of me- 
talic ores and non-metalic substances. Of the 
first class are the ores of lead, zinc, iron and 
copper; of the second class are the principal 
substances found in brick-clay, kaolin, cement 
rock, limestone for burning into quick limo, 
limestone for flux, glass-sand, peat and build- 
ing stone. In Wisconsin lead and zinc are 
found together ; the former has been utilized 
since lS2ti, the latter since 1860. The coun- 
ties of La Fayette, Iowa and Grant — the 
southwestern counties of the State — are known 
as the " leail region." All the lead and zinc 
obtained in Wisconsin are fr(,rn these counties. 
The lead ore is of one kind only — that known 
as galena. A large anidunt is produced yearly 
from the variirus mining districts in the lead 
region. The number of pounds raised from 
single crevices has often been several hun- 

•T. C. Cbamberlain, State Oeoloffist, In Illustrated Hist. 
Atlas of Wisconsin. 

drod thousand. The zinc ores werelformerly 
rejected as useless, but their value is, beyond 
doubt, very great, and they will be a sourca 
of wealth to the lead region for a long time 
.to come, as they are now extensively utilized. 
Iron mining in the State is yet in its infancy. 
Numbers of blast furnaces have sprung up in 
the eastern portion, but these smelt Michigan 
ores almost entirely. The several ores in Wis- 
consin are red hematites, brown hematites, 
mugnet'c ores and specular hematites ; the 
first are found in Dodge county ; the second 
in Portage, Wood and Juneau ; the two last 
in Bayfield, Ashland, Lincoln and Oconto 

The thirteenth administration (C. C. Wash- 
burn, governor) ended with the year 1873, 
the republican party in the State being de- 
feated for the first time since the commence- 
ment of Randall's administration. The session 
of the Legislature of 1874 was a noted on<' for 
the passage of the "Potter Law," limiting the 
compensation for the transportation of passen- 
gers, classifying freight, and regulating prices 
for its carriage on railroads within Wisconsin. 
Three railroad commissioners were to be ap- 
poiiitetl by the governor ; one for one year, 
one for two years, and one for three years, 
whose terms of office should commence on the 
Nth day of May, and the governor, thereafter, 
on the first day of May, of eacli year, siiould 
a|)])<)inl one commissioner for three' years. Ll^n- 
(ler this law the governor appointed J. H. Os- 
born, for three years; (leorge IL Paul, for two 
years; and J. W. Iloyt, for one year, tender 
executive direction, this conimi.<sion inaugura- 
ted its labors by compiling, classifying, and 
putting into convenient form for public use for 
the first time, all the railroad legislation of the 
State. In 1876 this board was abolished and a 
railroad commissioner, to be ap{)ointed by tlie 
governor every two years, was to take its place. 
This latter office was made elective in 1881. 
The commissioners who have held office under 
these various laws are : John W. Hoyt, from 



April 29, 1874, to March 10, 1876; George H. 
Paul, from April 29, 1874, to March 10, 1876 ; 
Joseph II. Osborn, from April ' 9, 1874, to 
March 10, 1876; Dana C. Lamb, from March 
10, 1876, to Feo. 1, 1878; A.J. Turner, from 
Feb. 1, 18V8, to Feb. 15, 1882; N. P, Hangeu, 
from Feb. 15, 1881, and now in office. The 
"Potter Law" was resisted by the railroad com 
panics, but ultimately the complete and abso- 
lute power of the people, through the Legisla- 
ture, to modify or altogether repeal their char- 
ters was fully sustained by the courts both of 
the State and the United States. The necessity 
for railroads in Wisconsin began to be felt 
while yet it was an appendage of Michigan 
territory. Great advantages were anticipated 
from their construction. There was a reason 
for this. Explorers had published accounts of 
the wonderful fertility of Wisconsin's soil, the 
wealth of its broad prairies and forest even- 
ings, and the beauty of its lakes and river.<!. 
Frtim 1836, with the hope of improving their 
condition, thousands of the enterprising 
yeomanry of New England, New York 
and Ohio started for the territory. Ger- 
mans, Scandinavians, and otlier Nationali- 
ties, attracted by the glowing accounts 
sent abroad, crossed the ocean on their 
way to the new world ; steamers ainl sail-craft 
laden with families and their household goods 
left Buffalo and other lake ports, all bound for 
Wisconsin. With the development of the 
agricultuial resources of the territory, grain 
raising became the most prominent intei'est, 
and as the settlements extended back from the 
lake shore the difficulties of transportation of 
the products of the soil were seriously felt. 
The expense incurred in moving a load of pro- 
duce seventy or eighty miles to a market town 
on the lake shore frequently exceeded the gross 
sum obtained for the same. All goods, wares 
and merchandise, and most of the lumber used 
were hauled by teams from Lake Michigan. 
To meet the great want, better facilities for 
transportation, railroads were an indispensable 

necessity. Between the years 1838 and 1841, 
the territorial Legislature of Wisconsin char 
tered several railroERi companies, but with the 
exception of the Milwaukee & Waukesha Rail- 
road Company, incorporated in 1847, none of 
the corporations thus created took any particu- 
lar shape. There are now in Wisconsin the 
following railroads, costing, in round numbers, 
$150,000,000: Chicago, Milwaukee & St. Paul; 
Chicago & Northwestern; Chicago, St. Paul, 
Minneapolis & Omaha; Milwaukee, Lake Shore 
& ^Vestern; Wisconsin Central; Green Bay & 
Minnesota; Green Bay, Winona & St. Paul; 
Wisconsin & Minnesota; Chippewa Falls &■ 
Western; Fond du Lac, Amboy & Peoria; 
Prairie du Chien & McGregor; Milwaukee & 
Northern; Chippewa Falls & Northern, iiid 
Wisconsin & Michigan. Other lines are still 
needed, and present lines should be extended by 
branch roads. The questions, as we have seen, 
upon which great issues have been raised 
between railway corporations in Wisconsin and 
the people, are now happily settled by securing 
to the latter their rights , and the^ former, 
under the wise and conciliatory policy [pursued 
by their managers, are assured of the safely of 
their investments. An ei-a of good feeling'^has 
succeeded one of distrust and antagonism. 
The people must use the railroads, and the rail- 
loads depend upon the people for sustenance 
and protection. 

Ill 1874 the Wisconsin commission lor the 
pu.pose of fish culture was organized. The 
iicxt year, by reason of State aid, the commis- 
sion was enabled to commence work. In 1876 
was completed the of grounds, the 
erection of the buildings, and the construction 
of the ponds (seven in number) of the Madi- 
son hatchery, situated in the town of Fitch- 
burg, Dane county. A temporary hatching 
house was continued for some time in Milwau- 
kee, for the hatching of spawn of the white 
tish and lake trout. The commission was re- 
organized in 1878, the number of the members 
being increased from four to seven. Appro- 



priatioiis by tlie Legislature have been con- 
liiiucil, ami llio work ]ir()iiiiscs I'avorable^i'esults 
to tlie Slate. 

Under an act of IHlb an Industrial School 
for girls was organized in Milw-iukee, where 
buildings have been erected, capable of accom- 
modating 150 inmates. Its proper subjectsare: 
(1.) Viciously inclined girls under sixteen, and 
boys under ten years of age; (2.) The stubborn 
and unruly, who refuse to obey their proper 
guardians; (.S.) Truants, vagrants and beggars; 
(4.) Those found in circumstances of manifest 
danger of falling into habits of vice and im- 
morality; (5.) 'I'hose under the above ages who 
have committed any offense punishable by fine 
or imprisonment in adult offenders. Although 
the school was founded by private charity, and 
is under the control of a self-perpetuating board 
of managers, it is incorporated and employed 
by the State for the custody, guardianshiji, 
discipline and instruction of the aforenamed 
children. In default of responsible and efhcient 
guardianship, they are treated as the minors 
antl wards of the State, and by it are committed 
to the guartlianship of this board of la<lies 
during minority. 

The application of Miss Lavinia Cioodell for 
admission to tlii^ bar of VVis(u)iisiii, was rejected 
by the supreme court at its .lanuary term, 1870; 
but as a law substMpiently passed the Legisla- 
ture, making ladies eligib'e to practice in the 
several courts of the State, she was, upon a 
second a]>pIication, admitted. 

Hy an act approved jMarch i:i, IS^O, a State 
board of iiealth was established, the appoint- 
ment of a superintendent of vital statistics pro- 
vided for, anil certain duties assigned to local 
boards of health. The State board was organ- 
ized soon after, seven persons having been ap- 
pointed by the governor as its members. And 
here it is proper to say a word as t<> the health 
of VVisconsin. "When we compare the general 
death-rate of Wisconsin with that of the other 
States of the Union, we find that it compares 
most favorably with that of Vermont, the 

healthiest of the New England States. The 
United States census of 1850, 1800 and 1870, 
gives Wisconsin ninety-four deaths to 10,000 of 
the population, while it gives Vermont 101 to 
every 10,000 of her inhabitants. The census of 
1870 shows that the death-rate from consump- 
tion in Minnesota, Iowa, California and Wis- 
consin are alike. These four States show the 
lowest death-rate among the States from con- 
sumption, the mortality being thirteen to fourteen 
per cent, of the whole death-rate. Climatologic- 
ally considered, then, there is not a more healthy 
State in the Union than the State of Wiscon- 
sin. But for health purposes something more 
is requisite than climate. Climate and soil 
must be equally good. Men should shun the 
soil, no matter how rich it be, if the climate is 
inimical to health, and rather choose the cli- 
mate that is salubrious, even if the soil is not so 
rich. In Wisconsin, generally speaking, the 
soil and climate are equally conducive to health, 
and alike good for agricultural purposes."* 

There was in Wisconsin a general feeling of 
patriotism (if the acts of its citizens, both native 
and foreign born, are to be taken as an indica- 
tion of their attachment to their country), mani- 
fested throughout the centennial year, 1876. 
A board of State centennial managers was pro- 
vided for by the Legislature, to represent Wis- 
consin at the Philadelphia exhibition, and $20, 
000 appropriated for their use, to make there a 
[iroper exhibition of the products, resources and 
advantages of the State. Under a law of this 
year, three revisors, afterward increased to five, 
were appointed to revise the statutes of the 
Slate. The result was a large volume, ably col- 
lated, known as the Revised Statutes of 1878, 
which was legalized by act of the June session 
of the Legisl.ature of that year. On the 19th of 
October, ISHO, Chief .Justice Edward Ct. Ryan 
departed this life, in the seventieth year of his 
age. lie was buried in Milwaukee, with, honors 
becoming the position held by him at the time 

•Dr. Joseph Hobbius, In Illustrated Historical Atlas of 



of his death. His successor, as previously 
stated, is Chief Justice Orsamus Cole. 

By an act of the Legislature of 1881, a board 
of supervision of Wisconsin charitable, re- 
formatory and penal institutions was founded. 
The boards of trustees by which these insti- 
tutions had been governed since their organi- 
zation were abolished by the same law. The 
board of supervision consists of five members, 
who hold their office for five years, and who 
are appointed by the governor, the Senate con- 
curring. The board acts as commissioners of 
lunacy, and has full power to investigate all 
complaints against any of the institulions un ■'er 
its control, to send for books and papers, sum- 
mon, compel thi' attendance of, and swear wit- 
nesses. The powers delegated to this board 
are so extraordinary, and its duties so manifold, 
that a recital of tliem will be found of interest. 
They are as follows : 

(1.) To maintain and govern the Wisconsin 
State Hospital for the Insane, the Northern 
Hospital for the Insane, the Wisconsin State 
Prison, the Wisconsin Industrial School for 
Boys, the Wisconsin Institution for the Educa- 
tion of the Blind, and the Wisconsin Institution 
for the Education of the Deaf and Dumb ; and 
such other charitable and penal institutions as 
may hereafter be established or maintained by 
the State. (2.) To carefully supervise and 
direct the management and affairs of said in- 
stitutions, and faithfully and diligently promote 
the objects for which the same have been 
established. (3) To preserve and care for the 
buildings, grounds and all property connected 
with the said institutions. (4.) To take and 
hold in trust for the said several institutions 
any land conveyed or devised, or money or 
property given or bequeathed, to be applied for 
any purpose connected therewith, and faithfully 
to apply the same as directed by the donor, and 
faithfully to apply all funds, effects and property 
which may be received for the use of such 
institutions. (5.) To make on or before Octo- 
ber 1 in each year, full and complete annual in- 

ventories and appraisals of all the property of 
each of said institutions, which inventories and 
appi'aisals shall be recorded, and shall be so 
classified as to separately show the amount, 
kind and value of all real and personal ])roperty 
belonging to such institutions. (6.) To make 
such by-laws, rules and regulations, not incom- 
patible with law, as it shall deem convenient or 
necessary for the government of the said insti- 
tutions and for its own government, and cause 
the same to be printed. (7.) To visit and care- 
fully inspect each of said institutions as often 
as once in each month, either by the full board 
or by some member thereof, and ascertain 
whether all officers, teachers, servants and em- 
ployees in such institutions are competent and 
faithful w the discharge of their duties, and all 
inmates thereof properly cared for and governed, 
and all accounts, account books and vouchers 
properly kept, and all the business affairs 
thereof properly conducted. (8.) To fix the 
number of subordinate officers, teachers, ser- 
vants and employees in each of said institutions, 
and prescribe the duties and compensa'ion of 
each, and to employ the same upon the nomi- 
nation of the respective superintendents and 
wardens. (9.) To promptly remove or discharge 
any officer, teacher or employe in any of said 
institutions, who shall be guilty of any malfeas- 
ance or misbehavior in office, or of neglect, or 
improper discharge of duty. (10.) To annually 
appoint for the Wisconsin State Hospital for 
the Insane and for the Northern Hospital for 
the Insane, for each, a superintendent, one 
assistant physician, a matron, a steward and a 
treasurer ; and for the Institution for the Edu- 
cation of the Blind, and the Institution for the 
Education of the Deaf and Dumb, and the In- 
dustrial School for Boys, for each, a superin- 
tendent, a steward, a treasurer, and all necessary 
teachers ; and for the State prison, a warden, 
a steward and a treasurer, who shall be the 
officers of said institutions respectively and 
whose duties shall be fixed by said board, 
except as herein otherwise provided. (H.) To 



maintain and govern the school, prescribe the 
course of stmly and provide tlie necessary ap- 
paratus and means of instruction for the Insti- 
tution for the Education of the Blind, and for 
the Institution for the Education of the Deaf 
and Dumb. (12) To prescribe and collect 
such charges as it may think just, for tuition and 
maintenance of pupils not entitled to the same 
free of charge, in the Institution for the Educa- 
tion of the Blind and in the Institution for the 
Education of the Deaf and Dumb. (13.) To 
fix the period of the academic year, not less 
than forty weeks, and prescribe the school 
terms in the Institution for the Education of 
the Blind and the Institution for the Education 
of the Deaf and Dumb. (U.) To confer, in 
its discretion, ui)on meritorious pupils, such 
academic and literary degrees as are usually 
conferred by similar institutions, and grant 
diplomas accordingly, in the Institution for the 
Education of the Blind and in the Institution 
for the Education of the Deaf and Dumb. 

On the 20th of April, 188.3, a commissioner 
was appointed by the governor, for two years, 
in accordance with the provisions of an act 
p.issed by the Legislature of that year creating 
a bureau of labor statistics. The object of this 
office, now filled by Frank A. Flower, is to col- 
lect manufacturing and labor statistics, report 
violations of laws for benefit of artisans, and 
generally to show the manufacturing condition 
and resources of the State. 

In her political divisions Wisconsin has 
copied, to a considerable e.\tent, from some of 
her sister States. These divisions are counties, 
towns, cities and incorporated villages. The 
county government is in charge of a county 
board of supervisors, consisting of the chairman 
of each town board, a su]H'rvisor from each 
ward of every city, and one from each incorpo- 
rated village. The county officers are : Clerk, 
treasurer, sheriff, coroner, clerk of circuit court, 
district attorney, register of deeds, surveyor, 
and one or two superintendents of schools, all 
elected biciiniallv. There are sixtv-five coun- 

ties in the State. The government of the 
towns is in charge of a town board of super- 
visors. The other officers are clerk, treasurer, 
assessors, justices of the peace, overseers of 
highways and constables. The government of 
cities depends upon charters granted by the 
State Legislature. Generally, there is a mayor, 
common council, clerk, treasurer, attorney, chief 
of police, fire marshal and surveyor. Incorpo- 
rated villages are governed by a president and 
six trustees. The other officers are clerk, treas- 
urer, supervisor, marshal and constable, and 
sometimes a justice of the peace or police jus- 

The constitution of Wisconsin, adopted by 
the people in 1>^48, is still "the supreme law of 
the State ;" but it has several times been 
amended, or had material additions made to it : 

(I.) Article V, section 21, relating to the pay 
of the members of the Legislature. This was 
amended in 1867. 

(2.) Article VI, sections 5 and 9, relating to 
the salaries of the governor and lieutenant-gov- 
ernor. This was amended in 1869. 

(3.) Article I, section 8, relating to grand 
juries. This was amended in 1870. 

(4.) Article IV, sections 31 and 32, relating to 
special legislation. These sections were added 
in 1871. 

(5.) Article XI, section 3, relating to munic- 
ipal taxation. This was amended in 1874. 

(6.) Article VII, section 4, relating to the 
number and term of the judges of the supreme 
court. This was substituted for the original 
section in 1877. 

(7.) Article VIII, section 2, relating to claims 
against the State. This was amended in is77. 

(8.) Article IV, sections 4, 5, 11 and 21, re- 
lating to biennial sessions, and a change in 
salaries and peniuisites of members of the 
Legislature. These were thus amended in 



(9) Article III, section 1, relating to resi- 
dence of voters in election districts some time 
before the election, and to registration of voters 
in cities and villages. Amended to this effect 
in 1882. 

(10.) Article VI, section 4, article VII, sec- 
tion 12, and article XIII, section 1, all relating 
to biennial elections. Amended to this effect 
in 1882.* 

*A. O. Wright, in Exposition of tlie Constitution of the 
State of Wisconsin. 





C H A P 1^ E R I . 

a:«''a, position and physical features. 

BKKOKE filtering upon a consideralion of 
tlic liiftory of Crawford county, past and 
prosoiit, it is a matter of importance to under- 
stand its area and geograpliical position. 


Crawford county, in aren, ranks among the 
soutlicrii counties of Wisconsin as one of aver- 
age size. It includes twenty-seven whole, half 
and fractional congressional townships with an 
average in each as folh)ws: 



Township 6. of range 5 west. 812 32 

6 " 5,648 84 

" '• " 7 " 980 12 

7 " " 3 " 143 15 

" " " 4 " 7,844 01 

'■ " " 5 " 19, 40; 10 

6 " 22,028 57 

7 " 2,.'J64 24 

8 " '■ 3 " 15,258 85 

•• " " 4 " 22,.507 37 

• '■ " r, " 33,350 73 

V. r.sliip (! of range 


6 21,317 03 

7 " 1,627 .57 

3 " 23,003 24 

4 " 22,739 57 

5 ■' 23,20H 70 

6 " 9,596 22 

3 " 23,078 53 

4 " 22 884 87 

5 " 23, .540 80 

6 •■ '. 17,475 44 

7 " 4,705 79 

3 •' 13,026 24 

4 " 11,498 82 

5 " 11,580 96 

6 " 11,60(1 08 

7 " 3,679 06 

This does not inchide tlie area of the ])rivate 
land claims confirmed to different parties hy 
the United States, and located on the i)rairie, 
the same on which the city of Prairie du CJiien 
is situated. The extreme length of the cDtinty, 
north and south, is twentv-ninc and one-half 




miles; its extreme widtli,east and west, twenty- 
eight miles. 


Crawford county is bounded on the north by 
Vernon county; on the east by the counties of 
Richland and Grant; on the south by the 
county last mentioned; and on the west by 
Allamakee and Clayton counties, Iowa. It is 
in the second tier of counties north of the 
northern boundary of the State of Illinois; its 
northern line being a distance from the south- 
ern boundary line of Wisconsin, in a straight 
course, of sixty-three miles. The eastern line 
of the county is 144 miles distant from the 
western shore of Lake Michigan. A dis- 
tance from its northeast corner of ■225 
miles, due north, is the nearest point on the 
southern shore of Lake Superior. 


[From the Illustrated Historical Atlas of Wisconsin. 1878.1 

At Prairie de Chien, the prairie is underlaid 
by about 1 40 feet of sand and gravel — river de- 
posit — under which commences the Potsdam 
sandstone formation. This has been pene- 
trated to the depth of 1016 feet in boring an 
artesian welt, without reaching the granite. 
Above the plain at this place, the Magnesian 
limestone rises in perpendicular cliffs to the 
height of about 250 feet. Above this, the 
bluff slopes back to a perpendicular height of 
about 100 feet. This slope is com- 
posed of the' St. Peter's sandstone, and the 
lower portion of the Trenton limestone. The 
formation of the whole of Crawford county is of 
similar character. The county is bounded on 
the west by the Mississippi river; on the south 
by the Wisconsin. The waters of these rivers 
have worn out deep channels in the rock, pro- 
ducing beetling bluffs on either side. The 
Kickapoo river runs diagonally through the 
county from northeast to southwest, in conse- 
quence of which the face of the county is worn 
into deep ravines. A very narrow ridge runs 
the whole length from northeast to southwest, 
sloping off abruptly — to the Kickapoo on one 

hand and Mississippi or "Wisconsin on the 
other. This ridge forms an admirable wagon 

The ►oil of Crawford county is rich in the 
elements necessary for vegetable growth. It is 
both argillaceous and calcareous, mixed in 
many places with sand and universalis witli a 
large proportion of vegetable mold. T^he soil 
produces abundant crops of cereals and affords 
good pasturage. The timber is composed of 
oak of several varieties, hickory, butternut, ash, 
elm, basswood, hard and soft maple, quaking 
asp, white and yellow birch, and black 

The county has one feature which is some- 
what remarkable. None of it has been subject 
to action of the glacial period. There, is no 
drift, nor are there any boulders or water-worn 
pebbles, except in beds of streams, with only 
one exception, which is in a bed of liraonite at 
Seneca, where there are numerous water-worn 
pebbles imbedded in iron ore. This bed of 
ore is situated on the highest land in the 

At this place there is a considerable deposit 
of limonite, which has never been worked. In 
the town of Wauzeka, there is considerable 
copper ore, of the variety called by miners 
o-ossam. It is found in masses imbedded in the 
earth from the size of peas to fifty and 
sometimes 100 pounds. This ore yields about 
twenty-five per cent, of copper. At Bridge- 
port, there are extensive quarries of Dolomite or 
Magnesian limestone. These quarries are of 
much importance, producing beautiful and dur- 
able building stone. It is at present mostly 
dressed into window caps and sills and 
columns. In the town of Wauzeka. some lead 
ore is found; but in no large quantities, as 
the Galena limestone terminates in a north- 
westerly direction. 

There are three artesian wells at Prairie du 
Chien, one discharging 809,616 gallons daily. 
This well is 960 feet deep,and is said to possess 
rare mineral qualities. The others are upward 



of 1,000 feet in depth, and discharge propor- 
tionately large quantities of water. The two 
wells last mentioned were bored for the ))ur- 
pose of obtaining water to drive machinery. 


Crawford county is emphatically the river 
county of Wisconsin. Leaving the smaller 
streams to be described in the record of the 
towns, it is sufficient, in a general view, to no- 
tice only the Mississippi, the Wisconsin and the 


This is the largest and most important river 
of the United States, rises in the north part of 
Minnesota at an elevation of l,6.'-0 feet above 
the tide water. Its chief source is Itasca lake, 
which is 1,575 feet higher than the sea, and 
about 3,000, or, as some say, 3,1(50 miles from 
the mouth of the ri\ei', and is about laiiludc 47 
degrees, 10 minutes nortii and longitude Uo cii- 
grees, 20 minutes west. FrcTii Itasci hike it 
runs first nortlnvard, but soiui turns tii\\aid> 
the east, and expands into Lake Cass and oiiici 
lakes. After flowing towards nearly cvers 
point of the compass, it ariive-i at Crow Wing, 
below which it runs soutliward to St. Cloud aii'i 
southeastward to Minneapolis. Here is a pic- 
turesque cataract callcil the Kails of St. An- 
th<iny, which is the head of navigation. The 
river here descends sixty-six feet in less than 
one mile, including a perpendicular fall of 
seventeen feet. It passes bj' the city of St. 
Paul and a few miles lower strikes the bound- 
ary of Wisconsin and expands into the long and 
beautiful Lake Pepin, bordered by vertical 
limestone blulTs, which are about 400 feet high 
and very picttircsque. Below Dubuque its 
general direction is southward, and it forms 
the boundary between the States of Iowa, Mis- 
souri, Arkansas and Louisiana on the right and 
Illinois, Kentucky, Tennessee and Mississippi 
on the left hand. After an extremely sinuous 
course it enters the Gulf of Mexico by several 
mouths at the southeast e.\tremity of Plaque- 

mine parish, Louisiana, in latitude 29 degrees 
north and longitude 89 degrees, 12 minutes 
west. Its largest affluents are the Missouri, Ohio, 
Arkansas and Red rivers, besides which it re- 
ceives the Minnesota, Iowa and Des Moines 
from the right hand and the Wisconsin and 
Illinois rivers from the left. The Missouri 
river is longer than the part of the Mississippi 
above the junction of the two rivers, which is 
called the Upper Mississippi. The total length 
of the stream from the sou ce of the Missouri to 
the Gulf of Mexico is computed to be 4,300 
miles, which exceeds that of any other river in 
the world. 'I'lie area drained by this river and 
its tributaries, according to Prof. Guyot, is 
1,244,000 square miles. It is computed that the 
mean volume of water discharged l)y it in a 
second is U75,000 cubic feet. It is navigable 
by large or middle-sized steamboats from its 
month to St. Paul, a distance of about 2,200 
miles. Steamboats can ascend the Alissouri to 
Fort Benton, which, :;ocording to some, is about 
•-' 500 miles from its mouth, and 3,900 miles 
from the mouth of the Mississippi. The chief 
cities on the great river, giving precedence to 
those nearest tlie source, are Minneapolis, St. 
Paul, La Crosse, Dubuque, Davenport, Keokuk, 
(^uincy, Hannibal, St. Louis, Memphis and Kew 
Orleans. The lowest place at which the river 
is crossed by a bridge is St. Louis, Mo., about 
1,400 miles from its' mouth. This has three 
arches raised so high that large steamers can 
pass under it. The river is 3,500 feet wide at 
St. Louis, about 2,500 at New Orleans ar.d 
4,000 feet at the mouth of the Ohio. It appears 
that it is generally wider between Dubuque and 
St. Louis than it is below the latter city. Three 
other bridges cross the river at Davenport, 
Clinton and Dubuque. The mean velocity of 
the current between St. Louis and the Gulf of 
Mexico is about sixty-five miles per day. 'I'he 
Mississippi Valley comprises a vast extent of 
very fertile land, which is nearly level or gently 
undulating. As the river runs soutliward and 
traverses eighteen degrees of latitude, the 



climate and productions of tbe lower part differ 
greatly from those of the upper part of the val- 
ley. In Louisiana and Mississippi the river is 
bordered hy alluvial plains and swamps, which 
are lower than the surface of the water, and 
are often inundated, though partly protected by 
artificial embankments called levees. The 
greatest floods occur in the spring, after the 
snow and ice of the Upper Mississippi have 
been melted. The water begins to rise about 
the Jst of March and increases until June. The 
levees are sometimes bursted or overcome by 
the violence of the flood, which rushes through 
crevices and devastates large tracts of arable 
land of which cotton and sugar are the staple 
products. Such a calamity occurred in April, 
1874, and i-educed many thousand people to des- 
titution. At the mouth of the river a large delta 
has been formed by the mud and detritus carried 
down by the current. This delta is intersected 
by a number of outlets, or watercourses, called 
bayous, which issue from the Mississippi, or de- 
rive from it a supply of water in time of a 
flood. "The whole area of the delta," says 
Dana, "is about 12,300 square miles and about 
one-third is a sea-marsh, only two-thirds lying 
above the level of the gulf." The amount of 
silt or sediment carried to the Mexican gulf by 
this river, according to Humphreys and Abbott, 
is about 1-1, 500th the weight of the water, equiv- 
alent for an average yea'r to 812,500,000,000,000 
pounds, or a mass one square mile in area and 
241 feet deep. "The new soil deposited in one 
year by the Mississispi," says Guyot, "would 
cover an area of 268 square miles with the 
thickness of one foot." The water enters the 
gulf by five channels called the Northeast Pass, 
Southeast Pass, South Pass etc. The navigation of 
these passes is partly obstructed by^ sand bars, 
which are continually formed or shifted, and to 
obviate this difliculty a system of jetties has 
been constructed in the South Pass by Capt. J. 
B. Eads, by authority of the National govern 
ment, calculated to maintain a channel thirty 
feet in depth, 


This stream, which washes for about ten 
miles the northwest boundary of Dane county, 
is much the most important of those which 
drain the elevated lands of the State. Its total 
length from its source lo its mouth is about 450 
miles. It forms, with its valley, the main topo- 
graphical feature of central Wisconsin. Rising 
in Lac Vieux Desert, on the summit of the Ar- 
chaean watershed, at an elevation of 951 feet 
above Lake Michigan, it pursues a 
southerly course for -300 miles over the crystal- 
line rocks, and then, passing on to the sand- 
stones which form its bed for the remainder 
of its course, continues to the southward some 
eighty miles more. Turning then westward, it 
reaches the Mississippi within forty miles of 
the south line of the State, at an elevation of 
only thirty feet above Lake Michigan, so that 
its fall from Lac Vieux Desert is 921 feet — an 
average of a fraction over two feet to the mile. 
Like all other streams which run to the south, 
southeast and southwest from the crystalline 
rocks, it has its quite distinct upper or crystal- 
line rock portion and its lower or sandstone 
portion. -This river, however, may be regarded 
as having three distinct sections, the first in- 
cluding all that part from the source to the last 
appearance of crystalline rocks in the bed of 
thfe stream, in the southern part of Wood 
county ; the second, that part from this point 
to the dells on the south line of Adams and 
Juneau counties; and the third, that portion 
from the dells to the mouth of the stream. The 
first of these divisions is broken constantly by 
rapids and falls, caused by the descent south of 
the surface of the Archican area, and by the 
obstructions produced by the inclined ledges of 
rock which cross the stream. The second and 
third sections are alike in being almost entirely 
without rapids or falls, and in the nature of the 
red rock, but are separated by the contracted 
gorge known as the dells, which, acting in 
some sort as a dam, prevents any considerable 
rise in the river .below, the water above not in- 


frequently . rising as much as fifty feet in flood 
seasons, whilst below the extreme fluctualioii 
does not exceed ton feet. The total lengths of 
the Archioan upper sandstone and lower sand- 
stone sections of the river are, respectively, 250, 
sixty-two and 130 miles; the distance through 
the dells being about seven and a half miles. 
The width of the river, where it enters Mara- 
thon county, is from 300 to 500 feet. It pursues 
a general southerly course through townships 
29,28,27, 26, 25 and 2 4 north, of range 7 east, 
and townsliips 24 and 23 north, of range 8 east, 
in the southern portion of Portage county. 
In this part of its course the Wiscon- 
sin flows througli a densely timbered country, 
and has, except where it makes rapids or 
passes through rock gorges, a narrow bottom 
land, which varies in width, is usually raised 
but a few feet above the water level, and is 
wider on one side than on the other. Above 
this bottom terraces can often be made out, 
with surfaces in some cases one or two miles in 
width. Above, again, the countrj' surface 
rises steadily to the dividing ridges on each 
side, never showing the blufl^ edges so charac- 
teristic of the lower reaches of the river. Heavy 
rapids and falls are made at Wausau (Big Hull 
Falls), at jSIosinee (Little Bull Falls), at Stevens 
Point and on section 8, in township 23 north, 
of range 8 east (Contant's Rapids). All but 
the last named of these are increased in height 
by artificial dams. Two miles below the foot 
of Contant's Rapids, just after receiving; the 
Plover river on the east, the Wisconsin turns a 
right angle to the west and enters upon the 
sparsely timbered sand plains, through wliich 
it flows for 100 miles. At the bend the river 
is quiet, with high banks of sand, and a few 
low outcro])sof gneiss at the water's edge. From 
the bend the course is westward for about nine 
miles, then, after curving southward again, the 
long series of rapids soon begins, which, with 
intervening stretches of still water, extend 
about fifteen miTes along the river to the last 
rapid at Point Bass in southern Wood county. 

East of the river line, between the city of 
Grand Rapids and Point Bass, the country 
rises gradually, reaching altitudes of 100 feet 
above the river at points ten or fifteen miles 
distant. On the west the surface is an almost 
level plain, descending gradually as the river 
.is receded from. At Point Bass the gneissic 
rocks disappear beneath the sandstones which 
for some miles have formed the upper portions 
of the river banks and now become in turn, the 
bed rock, and the first division of the river's 
course ends. The main tributaries which it 
has received down to this point are, on the 
left bank, the Big Eau Claire, three miles below 
Wausau ; the Little Eau Claire, on the north 
side of section 3, in township 25 north, of range 
7 east, just south of the north line of Portage 
county ; and the Big Plover, on section 9, in 
township 28 north, of range 5 east, just at the 
foot of Contant's Rapids ; on the right bank, 
the Placata or Big Rib, about two miles below 
Wausau ; the She-she-ga-ma-isk, or Big Eau 
Pleine, on section 19, in township 26 north, of 
range 7 east, in Marathon county ; and the 
Little Eau Pleine, on section 9, in township 25 
north, of range 7 east, in Portage county. All 
of these streams are of considerable size and 
drain large areas. They all make deviations 
in their courses, so that their lengths are much 
greater than the actual distances from their 
sources, to the Wisconsin at the nearest point ; 
and all of them have a very considerable 
descent, making many rapids and falls over the 
tilled edges of schistose and gneissic rocks, 
evm down to within short distances of their 
junctions with the main river. 

The streams on the west side head on the 
high country along the line of ^the fourth 
principal meridian, about forty miles west of 
the Wisconsin, and at elevations of from 
200 to 300 feet above their mouths; those 
on the east, head on the divide between the 
Wisconsin and Wolf about twenty miles east, 
at elevations not very much less. Reaching 
back, as these streams do, into a country large- 



ly timbered with pine, and having so large a 
descent, they are of great value for logging 
and milling purposes. 

The second section of the Wisconsin river 
begins at Point Bass with a width of from 
700 to 900 feet. The next sixty miles of its 
course, to the head of the dells, is a southerly 
stretch, with a wide bow to the westward, 
through sand plains, here and there timbered 
with dwarf oaks, and interspersed with marshes. 
Tliese plains stretch away to the east and west 
for twenty miles from the river bottom, gradu- 
ally rising in both directions. Scattering over 
them, at intervals of one to ten miles, are ero- 
sion peaks of sandstone, from fifty to .500 feet 
in height, rising precipitously from the level 
ground. Some of these are near and on the 
bank of the river, which is also, in places, bor- 
dered by low, mural exposures of the same 
sandstone. The river itself is constantly ob- 
structed by shifting sand bars, resulting from 
the ancient disintegration of the sandstone, 
which in the vicinity everywhere forms the 
basement rock; but its course is not interrupt- 
ed by rock rapids. As it nears the northern 
line of Columbia county, the high ground that 
limits the sand plane on the west, curving 
southeastward, finally reaches the edge of the 
stream, which, by its southeasterly course for 
the last twenty miles, has itself approached the 
high ground on the east. The two ridges thus 
closing in upon the river, have caused it to cut 
for itself the deep, narrow gorge known as the 

In the section of its course the Wisconsin re- 
ceives several important tributaries. Of those 
on the east the principal ones are Duck creek 
and Ten Mile creek, in the southern part of 
Wood county, and tlie Little and Big Roche — a 
Cris creeks, both 'in Adams county. The two 
former head in a large marsh twenty-five miles 
east of and over 100 feet above the main 
stream. The two latter head on the high 
dividing ridge, on the west line of Waushara 

county, at elevations between 1 50 and 200 feet 
above their mouths. 

These streams do not pass through a timbered 
country, but have very valuable water jiowers. 
Of those on the west two are large and impor- 
tant, the Yellow and Lemon weir rivers. Yel- 
low river heads in township 25 north, in the ad- 
joining corners of Wood, Jackson and Clark 
counties, and runs a general southei-ly course 
nearly parallel to the Wisconsin for over sev- 
enty miles, the two gradually approaching one 
another and joining in township 17 north, of 
range 4 east. The yellow river has itsarchajan 
and sandstone sections, the former exceedingly 
rocky and much broken by fapids and falls, 
the latter comparatively sluggish and without 
rock rapids. The upper portions of the river 
extend into the pine regions, and much logging 
is done in times of high water. The water 
powers are of great value. The Lemonweir is 
also a large stream. Heading in a timbered re- 
gion in the southeast corner of Jackson county, 
it flows southward for some distance througrh 
Monroe, and, entering Juneau on the middle of 
its west side, crosses it in a southeasterly direc- 
tion, reaching the Wisconsin on section 24, in 
township 15 north, of range 5 east, having de- 
scended in its length of some seventy miles 
about 200 feet. 

The Wisconsin enters the gorge, already spo- 
ken of as the dells, not far above the southern 
boundary line of Juneau and Adams counties. 
This famous passage of about seven and one- 
half miles has been often described. At its fork, 
between the counties of Sauk and Columbia, the 
Wisconsin enters upon the last section of its 
course and also upon the most remarkable bend 
in its whole length. Through the dells its 
general course is southward, but it now turns 
almost due east, in which direction it continues 
with one or two subordinate turns southward 
for about seventeen miles through low sand 
banks as far as Portage. Here it bends abrupt- 
ly south again, and, reaching its most eastern 
point not far below, soon swerves around into 



tlie final southwestward stretch to the Missis- 
sippi. The cause of this long detour to the 
east is sufficiently evident. As the river leaves 
the (lolls it finds lyingdirectly athwart its course 
two bold quartzite ranges, extending east 
and west througli Sauk county for upward 
of twenty miles, and crossing into Columbia, 
finally unite about eight miles east of the coun- 
ty line in a sharp and bold eastwardly project- 
ing ]i(iint, rising 400 feet above the river bot- 

Above Portage where the Wisconsin forms 
the southern boundary line of the town of Lew- 
iston, the ground immediately north is lower 
than the water in the river — the heads of Nee- 
nah creek, a tributary of the Fo.x, rising a short 
distance from its banks. In times of high wa- 
ter, the Wisconsin overflows into these streams, 
and thus contributes to a totally different river. 
At Portage, the Fo.';, after fiow ing south of west 
for twenty miles, approaches the Wisconsin, 
coming from the opposite direction. Where the 
two streams are nearest, they are less than two 
miles apart, and are separated by a low, sandy 
plain, the water in the Fox being five feet below 
that of the Wisconsin at ordinary stages. The 
greater ])art of this low ground is overflowed by 
the latter stream in times of high water, and to 
this is chiefly due the spring rise in the Fox 

After doubling the eastern end of the quart- 
zite ranges, as already said, the Wisconsin turns 
again to the west, being forced to this by im- 
pinging on the north side of a high bell of lime- 
stone country, which, after trending southward 
across the eastern part of Columbia county, veers 
gradually to a westerly direction, lying to the 
south of the river, along the rest of its course. 
Soon after striking this limestone region, the 
river valley assumes an altogether new character, 
which it retains to its mouth, having now a 
nearly level, for the most part treeless bottom, 
from three to six miles in width, ten to thirty 
feet in height, usually more on one side than on 

the other, and bounded on both sides by bold 
and often precipitous blufl^s, 100 to 350 feet in 
height, of sandstone capped with limestone. 
Immediately along the water's edge is usually a 
narrow timbered strip, rising two to four feet 
above the river, which is overflowed at high 
water. The line of bluffs along the north side 
of thii valley is the northern edge of the high 
limestone belt just mentioned, which reaches its 
greatest elevation ten to fifteen miles south of 
this edge. In front of the main bluff-face, es- 
pecially in its eastern extension, are frequently 
to be seen bold and high isolated outliers of the 
limestone country. On the north bank, the 
bluft's are at first the edges of similar large out- 
lying masses, but farther down they become 
more continuous, the river crossing over the 
north westward trending outcrop line of the 
Lower Magnesian limestone. 

In this last section of its course, the Wiscon- 
sin is much obstructed by bars of shifting sand, 
derived originally from the erosion of the great 
sandstone formation which underlies the whole 
region, and to whose existence the unusual 
amount of obstruction of this kind in the river 
is due. The altitude of the water surface of the 
Wisconsin at Lac Vieux Desert above Lake 
Michigan is 951 feet; at Wausau, above dam, 623 
feel; at Knowlton (high), 538 feet— (low), 523 
feet; at Stevens Point,485 feet; atContantsRap- 
ids,468 feet; at Grand Rapids — railroad bridge — 
420 feet; at Kilbourn City — railroad bridge — 233 
feet; at Portage, 211 feet; at Merrimack, 182 feet; 
at Sauk City, 165 feet; at Spring Green bridge, 
134 feet; at Muscoda, 115 feet; at the mouth of 
the stream, 34 feet. The average velocity of the 
river below Portage is remarkably uniform, and 
is just about two miles per hour. The daily 
discharges of the river at Portage, in times of 
extreme low water, is about 259,000,000 cubic 
feet. The average fall of the water surface of 
the river below Portage is one and one-half feet 
per mile. This rapid fall, were it not for the 
great amount of sand in the river bed, would 



make the stream a series of pools and rock rap- 


The Kickapoo rises in Monroe county, that is, 
its main or east branch; which is frequently 
termed the Kickapoo proper. It runs a south- 
west course after entering Vernon county, 
through the towns of Whitestown, Stark, touch- 
ing Webster, and then after crossing into Rich- 
land, in which county it flows in a south course, 

returns to Vernon, in the town of Liberty, and 
at a point on section 33, in the town of Kicka- 
poo, receives the west branch. The river after- 
ward takes a southwesterly course, leaving Ver- 
non county on section 16, in the town last men- 
tioned. The river runs through Crawford 
county, in a southerly direction and empties into 
the Wisconsin, on section 11, in the town of 
Wauzeka, just below the village of the same 





A much clearer and more correct Jcnowledge 
can be obtained of the topographical features 
and geological formations of the count}', by re- 
ferring by townships to its water sheds, streams, 
springs, prairies, forests, soils and sub-soils, 
clays and underlying formations, than from 
general remarks on its entire area. 

By carefully studying the references to each 
congressionally-surveyed township in the 
county, it will be seen that the whole region 
lies within the great driftless area of the State, 
and that its surface contour has never been 
modified by glacial action. 

We notice here high rolling ridges of land, 
intersected in all directions with deep ravines 
and valleys, often bordered with precipitous 
cliffs, — the elevation of the ridges above the 
valleys being from 300 to 500 feet. The valleys 
in their length and breadth are the effect of 
erosion only; but it seems probable that the 
streams formerly were much larger and acted 
with greater rapidity and force. When we 
mentally reconstruct the country, as it must 
once have been, by filling up the valleys with 
the formations now found on their sides, and 
then add the formations whose outlines still 
remain, wo can appreciate the immense denuda- 
tion which the counti'y has undergone. 


TowNSHir S, range 3 west (Marietta in jiart). 
This township is very hilly and rough land. 
The bills are high, steep, and covered with 
heavy timber of maple, elm, oak and basswood. 
The soil is ii sandy clay. The formations are 


Potsdam, Lower Magnesian and St. Peters 

Township 9, range 3 west (Scott). The 
divide between Knapp creek and the Kickapoo 
passes irregularly through the townsliip from 
section 31 to section 5. The ridge is, in 
some places, quite wide, and contains some 
good farming land. The township is well 
watered by numerous streams flowing from its 
center in all directions. The timber is very 
large and dense. The Potsdam covers one- 
third of the township, including all the valleys, 
and the Lower Magnesian the rest, except- 
ing a narrow belt of St. Peters along the divide. 

Township ]0, range 3 west (Clayton in part). 
The divide mentioned in township 9 con- 
tinues through township 10, from sections 32 to 
section 3, with numerous lateral spurs and ridges. 
The township consists chiefly of high, roiling, 
ridge land, with numerous ravines running 
down to the streams. The .soil is clay, and the 
timber very dense and large, with but little 
unilerbrush. The principal trees are raa])le and 
elm. Along the crest of the divide, on .sections 
3, 9, 16 and 20, are some very conspicuous 
mounds formed by outliers of St. Peters sand- 
stone. Sink holes are also of frequent occur- 
rence. Water is obtained with difficulty on 
the ridges. In places wells are sunk from 100 
to 165 feet. The formations are the same as 
in township 9. 

Township 11, range 3 west (part of Clayton 
in Crawford county, and of Kickapoo in Vernon 
county). The eastern and central parts of this 



township consist of high, wide, rolling ridges; 
and the western part, of steep, rocky blujBfs. 
The township is watered by the Kiclcapiio on 
the west and north. Fine springs are very 
numerous. The valley of the Kickapoo aver- 
ages about a mile in width. The soil through- 
out the township is clay and the timber very 
heavy. The Potsdam covers about one-thiid of 
the township; the Lower Magnesiaii, one-half; 
and the St. Peters, one-sixth. Many loose 
bowlders of the St. Peters are found on the 
ridges where the formation cannot be found in 
place. The general section, in this township, 
of the formation is as follows: 


St. Peters sandstone .50 

Lower Magnesiati limestone LiO 

Potsdam sandstone 300 

From ridge to valley, total ,500 

Township?, range 4 west{Wauzeka in part). 
The part of this township which lies north of 
the Wisconsin river consists almost exclusively 
of the alluvial bottoms of that river and the 
Kickapoo. It is densely timbered with elm, 
maple, basswood, butternut, etc., with a deep, 
black, swampy soil. The hills which inclose 
the rivers are found along the north line of the 
township. The formations are Potsdam and 
Lower Magnesian. 

Township 8, range 4 west (parts of Wauzeka, 
Marietta and Eastman). There is a high ridge 
running in a northeasterly course through tills 
township, from which the ground slopes to the 
Kickapoo and Wisconsin rivers. The country 
is very hilly, the ridges narrow and broken by 
deep ravines. The soil is clay, and the timber 
very large and dense. The township is well 
watered by the Kickapoo and its several 
branches. There are a great many large springs 
in the valley of the Kickapoo. The Potsdam 
covers about one-sixth of the township; the 
Lower Magnesian, two-thirds; and the St. 
Peters sandstone aiid Trenton limestone, one 

sixth. The general section of this township, 
taken from the ridge of the Kickapoo is: 


T.enton limestdne 30 

St. Peters sandstone 100 

Lower Magnesian limesto)ie .180 

Piitsdam sandstone 170 

Total from ridge to valley 480 

Township 9, range 4 west (Haney). A large 
part of this township is occupied by the valley 
of the Kickapoo, which is from one-half to a 
mile wide. The stream is about 200 feet wide, 
very crooked and sluggish. On each side of 
the river the country is very hilly. The valley 
of the Kickapoo and the country to the east of 
it has the heavy timber — maple, elm, etc.; but, 
west of the valley, the hills are smooth and 
bare, many of them showing terraces of the 
Potsdam, and the timber is white oak in grove, 
on the tops of the ridges. The formations are 
Potsdam, one-third; Lower Magnesian, two- 
thirds; and some ridges and mounds of St. 
Peters on the eastern side. 

Township 10, range 4 west, (east part of 
Utica and west part of Clayton.) The general 
features of tlus township are similar to those of 
township 9. The valley of the Kickapoo is 
wider, more sandy, and less heavily timbered. 
Fine springs are very numerous. The forma- 
tions are Potsdam and Lower Magnesian in 
about equal parts. 

Township 11, range 4 west, (part of Utica 
in Crawford county, and of Franklin in Vernon 
county.) This township is composed chiefly of 
high, rolling ridge land, with a clay soil. In 
the central part of the township the soil is rather 
sandy, owing to a long belt of St. Peters which 
crosses the township from section 4 to section 
34. The timber consists of groves of large 
white oaks. The formations are Potsdam one- 
sixth; Lower Magnesian two-thirds; and St. 
Peter 's sandstone, one-sixth. 

Township 7, range 5 west, (Wauzeka in 
part) This is a very hilly township. It is wa- 
tered by the Wisconsin river, Grand Gris and 



Little Kickapoo. The valleys and sides of the 
ravines are heavily timbered with elm, maple, 
basswood, butternut, etc. There are two very 
high and wide ridges in the northerti and norlh- 
western parts of the township, where the soil is 
clay, rather shallow, and the limber smaller and 
more scattering. All the formations from the 
Potsdam to the Galena limestone, inclusive, are 

Township 8, range 5 west, (parts of Wauze- 
ka and Eastman.) The high ridge which di- 
vides the Kickapoo and Mississippi rivers passes 
through the west side of this township. From 
it the country slopes to the east in wide, regu- 
lar ridges, and deep narrow ravines. The soU 
throughout the township is clay. The timber is 
small and consists of groves of small black oak. 
Much of the country is prairie and devoid of 
timber. The geological formations are the 
same as in township 7. The general section of 
this township, from section 32 on the ridge to 
section 36, on the Kickapoo, is as follows: 


Galena liraeslone 20 

Blue limestone 25 

Bluff lunestoue 20 

St. Peter's aandslone 100 

Lower Miignesian limestone 180 

Postilam sandstone 100 

From ridge to river, total 445 

Township 9, range 5 west, (Seneca in part.) 
The divide continues from the last township, 
from section 31 to section 3. It is very high, 
wide and rolling, with numerous subordinate 
ridges. The township is well watered by numer- 
ous small streams, and springs are found quite 
near the summit of the ridge, issuing from the 
numerous clay layers in the Trenton limestone. 
The soil isclay,fre(juently rather sandy. The tim- 
ber is oak, small but quite abundant. All the for- 
mations from the Galena limestone to the Pots- 
dam, are present; the St. Peter's and the Lower 
Magnesian are the prevailing ones. 

TowNsiiu- 10, range 5 west, (parts of Utica, 
Freeman and Seneca.) The divide continues a 

nearly north and south course from section 34 
to section 3. The general features of the coun- 
try are very similar to those of township 9. Much 
of the township is prairie . The soil is a deep clay 
and the timber light. With the exception of 
the principal ridge, the country is very hilly 
and the valleys very deep and narrow. The 
formations are Potsdam, Lower Magnesian and 
St. Peter's; the last two being the principal ones. 

Township 11, ranges west, (parts of Utica 
and Freeman in Crawford county, and of 
Franklin iud Sterling in Vernon county.) 
This is chiefly a prairie country; the divide is 
high, wide and rolling, extending from section 
35 to section 1. There are no large streams in 
the township, but numerous small ravines run- 
ning east and west from the divide. Small 
springs are quite numerous and the greater part 
of the township is available for agricultural 
purposes. The formations are St Peters and 
Lower Magnesian in about equal parts. 

Township 6, range 6 west (part of the town 
of Bridgeport and of the city of Prairie du 
Chien.) That part of this township which lies 
north of the Wisconsin river consists of the 
rich alluvial bottom lands of that stream, with 
numerous sloughs and swamps. The bluffs 
which inclose the river on the north commence 
near the north line of the township. The town- 
ship is well timbered; soil, clay. The forma- 
tion is Lower Magnesian. 

Township 7, range G west, (jiarts of the towns 
of Bridgeport anil Prairie du Chien and of the 
citj' of Prairie du Chien.) TIk' high ridge 
which divides the Kickapoo and the Mississippi 
begins in this township and I'uiis northeast, 
passing out at section 2. The ridge is wide, 
level and heavily timbered with white, black 
and burr oak. The soil is clay. The township 
is well watered and springs are quite numerous. 
On the west side is the valley of the Missisippi 
from one to two miles wide between the bluffs 
and the river. Its soil is sandy. All the 
formations are present from the Galena to the 
Lower Magnesian, inclusive. 



Township 8, range 6 west,(part of Eastman.) 
The land in this township is very hilly and 
rough, heing composed of long, straight ridges, 
which run east and west and become quite nar- 
row as they approach the Mississippi on the 
west. There are a great many good springs 
arising near the ridge which in the course of a 
half mile sink into the ground, so that the large 
ravines although deep, seldom have any water 
in them. The soil is clay and in the western part 
quite stony. The timber is small and rather 
sparse. The formations are Galena limestone 
to Potsdam sandstone, inclusive. The general 
section of this township from section 23 to tlie 
Mi.'-sissippi river is as follows: 


Galena limestone 50 

Trenton limestone (blue and butf ) 40 

St. Peters sandstone 110 

Lower Magnesian limestone 250 

Potsdam sandstone 20 

• From ridge to valley, total 470 

Township 9, range o west, (part of Seneca) 
The bend of the Mississippi river causes this to 
be a fractional township, containing only about 
twelve square miles. It is composed of steep and 
rocky bluffs, forming the ends of ridges, often 
making perpendicular cliffs and escarpments of 
rock for long distances along the bank of the 
river. The township is covered with small tim- 
ber. The ridges are very high, narrow and 
steep. The formations are the same as in town- 
ship 9, just mentioned. 

Township 10, range 6 west, (parts of Seneca 
and Freeman). This is also a town- 
ship and contains about twenty square miles. 
It is well watered by the Mississippi river and 
Sugar, Buck and Copper creeks. Fine iarwe 
springs are very numerous. The soil through- 
out the township is clay and the timber small 
but abundant. The valleys and ridges are wide. 
The formations are the Potsdam and Lower 
Magnesian in about equal parts. 

Township 11, range 6 west, (part of Free- 
man in Crawford county, and of Wheatland 

and Sterling in Vernon-county). This township 
consists chiefly of high rolling, ridge land, hav- 
ing an elevation from 400 to 550 feet above the 
Mississippi. The principal ridge is very wide 
aiul runs east and west through the northern 
part of the township, with numerous smaller 
ridges running north and south. The soil is 
clay, in some parts rather sandy. The timber 
is small, but abundant. Water is very scarce 
on the ridges. The only stream is Rush creek 
in the southern part of the township; it has a 
rich and fertile valley about half a mile in 
width. The formations are Potsdam, Lower 
Magnesian and St. Peters; the two latter pre- 

Township 11, range 7 west, (part of Free- 
man in Crawford county, and Wheatland in 
Vernon county). This is a township made frac- 
tional by the Mississippi river, and contains 
about sixteen square miles. It is very hilly. 
Tlie river runs close to the bluffs, which are high 
and precipitous. The soil is clay and the tim- 
ber white oak. The formations are Potsdam, 
Lower Magnesian and St. Peters, the second 
being the prevailing one. 

Fractionai, townships, 6, (being a part of 
Bridgeport), 7, (being a portion of the city and 
town of Prairie du Chien), 8, (being a part 
of Eastman) and 10, (being a portion of 
Freeman), range V west. These fractional 
townships lie immediately upon the Mississippi 
river, tbe land being in many places subject to 
overflow in high water. 

Fractional townships 7, range .3 west, (in 
Marietta), and fractional township 6, range 7 
west, (in Wauzeka), both lie immediately north 
of, and are washed by the Wisconsin river. 

exposures of the POTSDAM SANDSTONE. 

There are some fine exposures of the Potsdam 
sandstone in Crawford county. 

(1.) There is one on the northwest quarter 
of section 11, township 10, range 4 west, (Clay- 
ton), where a small creek enters the Kickapoo. 

(2.) On the Kickapoo, on the southwest 
quarter ef section 27, township 9, range 4 west, 



.(Haney), where the top of the Potsdam is 
distinctly marked by a bed of white sandstone 
fifteen feet thick. Above it are the transition 
beds, and the lower beds of the Lower Magne- 
sian. Tiie Potsdam is also exposed for fifty feet 
below its junction with the Lower Magiiesian, 
and consists of heavy-bedded white and yellow 
sandstones. The blufiEs, in this vicinity, present 
this appearance for a distance of about a mile. 
The productions of the Potsdam, which are 
of importance in an economical point of view, 
are iron, building stone and mineral waters. 
Iron, in the form usually of hematite, is found 
in Crawford county, but none is mined. Build- 
ing stone and sand, for mortar and plaster- 
ing, are obtainable ; but it is in the mineral 
waters obtained by means of artesian wells that 
the Potsdam is most valuable as yet to the 
county. An account of these wells will be 
given hereafter. 


This formation is an important one because 
by its decomposilion it produces a rich and fer- 
tile soil on the ridges, and being washed down 
into the valleys, it fertilizes the otherwise bar- 
ren sand derived from the Potsdam. 

In the valley of the Mississippi there is no 
formation which presents finer or more I'reipient 
exposures. Its hardness, and the frequent 
joints which it contains, predispose it to form 
the lofty cliffs and precipices which form such 
an impressive feature in the scenery of the 

At Prairie du Chien, tlie upper and middle 
portions are exposed, but the entire thickness is 
not seen unlil about six miles above, when the 
lower layers are exposed. Proceeding u|) the 
river, the formation constantly occupies a higher 

position in the bluffs. 


This limestone is ahvays light-colored, em- 
bracing all shades of yellow and gray, and is 
sometimes perfectly white. In texture it is 
hard and compact, the separate grains of 
which it is composed being seldom distinguish- 

able. It usually presents an indistinct crystalline 
appearance, but the crystals are never large 
enough to present distinct faces or a clearage. 
Exposed surfaces of this formation always 
weather very irregularly by the removal of the 
lime through the usual atmospheric agencies. 
Small irregular cavities and hollows are thus 
formed in all i)arts, and in cliff exposures small 
holes and caves are sometimes seen, usually 
penetrating but a short distance. 

The Lower Magiiesian limestone always over- 
lies the Potsdam conformably; that is, no denu- 
dation of the latter appears to have taken place 
before the former was deposited. The line of 
demarkation between the two formation.s is 
sometimes very distinctly defined by beds of 
limestone devoid of sand overlying tiie white 
sandstone of the Potsdam. 'i'hc transition 
beds are, however, usu;illy present, and the 
Lower Magnesian sometimes graduates almost 
insensibly into the Potsdam. The stratification 
of the Lower Magnesian is very regular and 
uiiifoiin ; in some of the exposures, as in the 
clitYs along the .Mississippi river, the same beds 
can be traced continuously for long distances. 
The greatest thickness which the Lower Magne- 
sian is found to attain anywhere north of the 
Wisconsin river is 250 feet. The least thickness 
yet observed is 100 feet. This can be seen in the 
northwest quarter of section 5, township 9, 
range 5 west, (Seneca). Its average thickness 
may be stated at about IVo feet. These meas- 
ures of thickness refer to localities where the 
I'lirination is overlaid by the St. Peters. 

The following is a list of localites in Crawford 
county where the exposures of the Lower Mag- 
nesian limestone offer facilities for the study of 
the foriiKition : 

(1.) At DeSoto, on the Mississippi river, 
where the formation affords a fine, close-grained 
and durable building stone. It is of a very 
light color, and often nearly white. 

(2.) Section 6, township 7, range 6 west, 
(Prairie du Chien), where there are many fine 
cliff exposures overlaid with bluffs of St. Peters. 



(3.) Section 18, township 8, range 6 west, 
(Eastman), where, along the Mississippi river, 
there are long, continuous cliff exposures«of the 
formation, overlying the upper beds of the Pots- 
dam, and affording good opportunities to exam- 
ine the transition beds. 

No very extensive or valuable deposits of 
metallic are found in the Lower Magnesian 
formation in Crawford county. A few lo- 
calities of copper and lead exisit, which show 
that the formation is not entirely destitute of 
metallic contents. Copper has been found on 
the northeast quarter of the southwest quarter, 
and the northwest quarter of the southeast 
quarter of section 20, township 8, range 5 west, 
(Eastman). This is in the valley of Plum 
creek, a small tributary of the Kickapoo, and 
about two miles above its junction with that 
stream. Here the copper has been mined. 

The existence of copper ore here has been 
known for a number of years, and small quan- 
tities have been from time to time extracted ; 
but it was not until 1>^G0 that any systematic 
attempt at mining was begun. In 1858, the 
land was purchased by a company of five per- 
sons, residents of New York city, who com- 
menced work in 1860, and abandoned it in 1861 
on account of the war. Since then no work 
has been done in the Plum Creek Copper Mine, 
as it is called. About two car loads of ore were 
shipped. An analysis of some of the ore found 
at the mine gives only a little over ten per 
cent, of metallic copper, which is hardly a re- 
sult to justify additional expense in developing 
this mine. 

The Copper Creek mine is on the northeast 
quarter of section 34, township 10, range o west, 
(Utica). The mines of this locality are situ- 
ate about three-quarters of a mile southwest of 
the village of Mt. Sterling, and on the side of 
a hill sloping toward one of the branches of 
Copper creek. The dej)osit of copper ore was 
discovered, in 1843, by William T. Sterling. It 
was first worked by him and George Messer- 
smith they paying a tribute of one-sixteenth to 

the United States. During this time, a speci-* 
men weighing 300 pounds was sent to the 
patent office. In the work performed by these 
men, 20,000 pounds of ore were taken out, 
when the best part of the deposit appeared to 
be exhatisted and the work was suspended for 
two years. In 184^ the ground was leased to a 
German company who worked it abotit a year, 
their work being chiefly drifting and prospect- 
ing, after which time they abandoned it as un- 

The property remained idle until 1856, when 
it was leased to a New York company, who 
worked it from May to September, producing 
20,000 pounds of ore, at a cost of about 14,000 ; 
since then the land has never been worked. 

In an analysis of the ore made abnut thirty 
years ago less than twenty per cent, was metal- 
lic copper. 

The existence of lead in Crawford county, in 
the Lower Magnesian formation, is confined to 
the vicinity of the lower part of the Kickapoo 
valley. The Little Kickapoo Lead Mine is 
located on the northwest quarter of section 10, 
township 7, range 5 west. (Wauzeka), in the 
upper pari of the bluff on the north siile of the 
Little Kickapoo, a small tributary of the Wiscon- 
sin. Lead 01 e was first discovered here in the 
year 1840, and was worked at intervals until the 
year 1850. There have been obtained from this 
mine from i!5,000 to 50,000 pounds of ore. An 
analysis shows over eighty-two per cent, of metal- 
lic lead. Thisisequaltoany found in Wisconsin. 
There are evidences of other deposits in the coun- 
try round about. 

Wherever the Lower Magnesian is exposed, 
there is always an abundance of good building 
stone. Some of the best quarries in the county 
are those at Prairie du Chien. This formation 
also affords lime with as much facility as build- 
ing stone All parts of the formation which are 
free from flint will produce lime on burning. 
There are several places in Crawford county 



where lime is burned in kilns of tlie simplest 
form and constrnction. 


Owing to the elevation attained by the sever- 
al formations, through their gradual rise in a 
northerly di''ection, and to the great and general 
denudation to which the country has been sub- 
jected, the St. Peters sandstone is only found 
in isolated areas of comparatively small extent 
and confined to the highest parts of the ridges. 
The area of this formation begins in township 6, 
range 6 west, (Bridgeport), and extends in a 
northerly direction through the county. On the 
west it approaches to the Mississippi in town- 
ship 10, range 6 west, (parts of Seneca and Free- 
man), and maybe traced along the bluffs of that 
river and all its tributary streams, in a belt 
varying from a mile in width on the north, to a 
quarter of a mile wide opposite Prairie du Chien; 
thence, along tht- bluffs of the Wisconsin and 
its tributaries to the Kickapoo. On the eastern 
side of the divide, it is seldom found more than 
two or three miles from the principal ridge, but 
as the country descends more gradually to the 
Kickapoo than, to the Mississippi, it covers rela- 
tively a much larger area than on the west- 
ern slope; and in township 10, range 5 west, 
(parts of Utica, Seneca and Freeman), it is the 
surface rock over about one-half of the town- 

The country just described embraces many 
fine ex])osures among which may be nu-ntioiied 
till- following: 

1. The mounds near Mt. Sterling, which are 
chiefly composed of sandstone. 2. A ledge 
fifiy feet high near the quarter post of sections 
15 and 22, in township s, range .5 west, (East- 
man). 3. A mound on the southwest quarter 
of section 34, townshi}) 8, range 5 west, (East- 

The following exposures are situated on the 
ridge between Knapp creek and the Kickapoo: 

1. In townships, range 4 west, (Marietta), 
the St. Peters is the surface rock in parts of the 
following sections: 1, 2, 11, 12, l:i, 14,15,20, 

21, 22, 23, 24, 25, 26, 27, 28, 29, 31, 32, 33 and 
34. Its total area is a little more than seven 
square miles. There is one good exposure 
where it forms a mound in the southeast quar- 
ter of section 2. 

2. In township 8, range 3 west, (Marietta), 
a branch of the same range is seen, extending 
through sections 6, 7, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21 and 
29, forming an area of about three square miles, 
with one fine ledge exposure near the center of 
section 7. 

3. The same sandstone ridge continues in a 
northerly direction through sections 36, 25 and 
24 in township 9, of range 4,(Haney), and through 
sections 31, 30, 19, 18, 17, 16, 15, 10, 9, 8, 4, 5 
and 6, in township 9, of range '3 west, (Scott), 
and runs out in sections 3 I and 32, of township 
10, range 3 west, (Clayton), comprising a surface 
area of six sections. There is also an isolated 
area on sections 13, 14, 23 and 24 in township 9, 
range 3 west, (Scott), equal to one section. 

4. In township 10, range 3 west, (Clayton), 
there are two large isolated areas: the first is on 
sections 22, 23, 26, 27, 35 and 36 having an ex- 
tent of two square miles; the second is on sec- 
tions 3, 4, 9, 16, 17 and 20 having an extent of 
one and a half square miles. On the latter are 
four prominent mounds of large size, which 
afford fine opportunities for studying the forma- 


These two formations, which are usually con- 
sidered collectively, are occasionally found north 
of the Wisconsin river. They usually attain 
their average thickness, which is about 
twenty-five feet each. There are no useful ores 
found in this formation north of the Wisconsin. 
The blue limestone would furnish an excellent 
material for burning to lime; but it is not used 
for that purpose. 

A very singular deposit is to be seen at the 
village of Seneca, in the lower part of the buff 
limestone. It forms a small eminence a short 
distance north of the village. The dijiosit con- 
sists of a conglomerate, formed of quartz peb- 



bles of small size, and sand in large rounded 
grains, firmly united with iron as a cementing 
material. The pebbles are seldom more than 
half an inch in the longest dimension, consisting 
always of white or transparent quartz, and al- 
ways smoot'ly rounded, evidently having been 
rolled by the action of water. 

The extent of the deposit is small, covering 
only about an acre and not exceeding five or six 
feet in depth. Several pits have been sunk in 
it, and numerous large masses of the conglom- 
erate taken out in attempts to utilize it as iron 
ore; but, on account of the large amount of 
quartz ore material, which constitutes nearly 
one-half of tlie entire bulk, it is useless as an 
ore. This deposit derives its chief interest from 
the fact that it is the only ore of the kind found 
anywhere in the formation 

1. The Trenton forms the surface rock in 
sections 3, 10, 11, 15, 16, IT, 18, 19, 20, 21, 29, 
30, 31 and 32, in township 9, of range 5 west, 
(Seneca). On section 20, the Galena limestone 
appears, and buflp and blue form a belt surround- 
ing it. This belt, commencing on section 20, 
runs southwest to the bluffs of the Mississippi; 
thence south along that stream and all its tribu- 
taries; thence east and north about the upper 
parts of the Grand Gris, Little Kickapoo and 
Plum creek; thence north to the head of Otter 
creek to the point of departure. Compared 
with this large tract all the other areas are small. 

2. The blue limestone is found on sections 
13, U, 21, 22, 23 and 28 in township S, of 
range 4 west, (Marietta), lying on the crest of 
the ridge in a long strip about half a mile in 
width, comprising an area of about two sections. 

■". There is also a semi-circular strip, on 
sections 1 and 2, in the same township, extend- 
ing into section 6, of township 8, in range 3 west, 
(Marietta), and forming an .area equal to one 
square mile. 

4. In township 10, range 5 west, (Utica), the 
two small mounds near the village of Mt. Ster- 
ling are capped with buff limestone. 

5. In township 11, range 5 west, (Utica), is 
an area of about two square miles, surrounding 
the village of Rising Sun, lying on sections 14, 
15, (in Vernon county), 21, 22, 23, 26, 27, 35, and 
on the divide between the Mississippi and Kick- 
apoo rivers. 


This sub-division of the Trenton period is 
found in a strip averaging about a mile in width, 
occu]>ying tlie highest part of the ridge between 
the Kickapoo and Mississippi, extending from 
section '^0, in township 9, of range 5 west (Sene- 
ca), to section 28, township 7, of range 6 west, 
(Prairie du Chien), a distance of about fourteen 
miles. From this ridge, the formation extends 
west, towards the Mississippi, in three small, 
subordinate ridges; and on the east, it extends 
for a short distance on the ridges between the 
Grand Gris, Little Kickapoo, Plum and Pine 
creeks. This formation isusually hard and com- 
pact in texture, of a yellow color and contains 
numerous fiints disseminated through it. It 
is almost devoid of organic remains, and has 
not been found to contain any ores or minerals ' 
of value. 

[By T. C. ChamberliQ, State Geologist.] 

I. — Potsdmn Sandstone. 
After the great Archtean upheaval, there fol- 
lowed a long period, concciiiing which very lit- 
tle is known — a lost interval in geological his- 
tory. It is only certain that immense erosion of 
the Archaean strata took place, and that in time 
the sea advanced upon the island, eroding its 
strata and re-depositing the wash and wear be- 
neath its surface. The more resisting beds 
withstood this advance, and formed reefs and 
rocky islands off the ancient shore, about whose 
bases the sands and sediments accumulated, as 
they did over the bottom of the surrounding 
ocean. The breakers, dashing .against the rocky 
clifl's, brought down masses of rock, which im- 
bedded themselves in the sands, or were rolled 
and rounded on the beach, and at length were 



buried, in either case, to tell their own history, 
when they should be again disclosed by the 
ceaseless gnawiiigs of the very elements that 
had buried them. In addition to the accumula- 
tions of wash and wear that have previously 
been the main agents of rock formations, abund- 
ant life now swarms in the ocean, and the sands 
become the great cemetery of its dead. Though 
the contribution of each little being was small, 
the myriad millions the waters brought forth, 
yielded by their remains, a large contribution to 
the accumulating sediments. Among plants 
there were sea-weeds, and among animals, pro- 
tozoans, radiates, mollusks and articulates, all 
tlie sub-kingdoms e.vcept the vertebrates. Among 
these, the most remarkable, both in nature and 
number, were the trilobites, who have left their 
casts in countless multitudes in certain localities. 
Tlie result of the action of these several agen- 
cies was the formation of extensive beds of 
sandstone, with interstratified layers of lime- 
stone and shale. These surrounded the Archfe- 
an nucleus on all sides, and reposed on its 
flanks. On the Lake Superior margin, the sea 
acted on the copper and iron-bearing series, 
wliicli are highly ferruginous, and the result was 
tile red Lake Superior sandstone. On the oppo- 
site side of the island, the wave-action was 
mainly upon quartzitcs, porphyries and granites 
and resulted in light-colored sandstones. The 
former is confined to the immediate vicinity of 
Like Superior; the latter occupies abroad, irreg- 
ular belt bordering on the Archfean area on the 
south, and, being widest in the central part of 
llie State, is often likened to a rude crescent. 
It will lie understood from the foregoing 
description, I hat the strata of this formation lies 
in a nearly horizontal po-ition, and repose un- 
conformably upon the worn surface of the crys- 
talline rocks. The close of this period was not 
ui:irked by any great upheaval; tliere was no 
crumpling or metamorphism of the strata, and 
they iiave remained to the present day very 
much the same as they were originally deposited, 
save a slight arching upward in the central por- 

tion of the State. The beds have been some- 
what compacted by the pressure of superincum- 
bent strata and solidified by the cementing ac- 
tion of calcareous and ferruginous waters, and 
by their own coherence, but the original char- 
acter of the formation, as a great sand-bed, has 
not been obliterated. It still bears the ripple- 
marks, cross-lamination, worm-burrows, and 
similar markings that characterize a sandy 
beach. Its thickness is very irregular owing 
to the unevenness of its Archrean bottom, and 
may be said to range from 1,000 feet downward. 
The strata slope gently away from the Archaean 
core of the State and underlie all the latter for- 
mations, and may be reached at any point in 
southern Wisconsin by penetrating to a sufficient 
depth, which can be calculated with an approx- 
imate correctness. As it, is a water-bearing for- 
mation, and the source of fine artesian wells, 
this is a fact of much importance. The inter- 
bedded layers of limestone and shale, by sup- 
plying impervious strata, very much enhance its 
value as a source of fountains. 

II. — Lower Magnesian Limestone. 

Daring the previous period, the accumulation 
of sandstone gave place for a time to the forma- 
tion of limestone, and afterward the deposit of 
sandstone was resumed. At its close, without 
any very remarked disturbance of existing con- 
ditions, the formation of limestone was resumed, 
and progressed with little interruption till a 
thickness ranging from fifty to 250 feet was a'.- 
tained. This variation is due mainly to irregu- 
larities of the upper surface of the formation, 
which is undulating, and in some localities may 
ap|)ropriately be termed billowy, the surface 
rising and falling 100 feet in some cases, within 
a short distance. This, and the preceding sim- 
ilar deposit, have been spoken of as linie.'^tone 
simply, but they are really Dolomites, or Mag- 
nesian limestones, since they contain a large 
proportion of carbonate of magnesia. This rock 
also contains a notable tjuantiiy of silicia, which 



occurs disseminated through the mass of rock; 
or, variously, as nodules or masses of chert; as 
crystals of quartz, tilling or lining drusy cavi- 
ties, forming beautiful miniature grottoes; as 
the nucleus of oolitic concretions, or as sand. 
Some argillaceous matter also enters into its 
composition, and small quantities of the ores of 
iron, lead and copper, are sometimes found, but 
they give little promise of value. The evidences 
of life are very scanty. Some sea-weeds, a few 
mollusks, and an occasional indication of other 
forms of life, embrace the known list, except at 
a few favored localities where a somewhat am- 
pler fauna is found. But it is not, therefore, 
safe to assume the absence of life in the depos- 
iting seas, for it is certain that most limestone 
has originated from the remains of animals and 
plants that secrete calcareous material, and it is 
most consistent to believe that such was the 
case in the present instance, and that the dis- 
tinct traces of life were mostly obliterated. 
This formation occupies an irregular belt skirt- 
ing the Potsdam area. It was, doubtless, orig- 
inally a somewhat uniform band swinging 
around the nucleus of the state already formed, 
but it has since been eroded by streams to its 
present jagged outline. 

III. — St. Peter''s Sandstone. 
At the close of this sandstone-making period 
there appears to have been an interval of which 
we have no record, and the next chapter of the 
history introduces us to another era of sand ac- 
cumulation. The work began by the leveling 
up of the inequalities of the surface of the Lower 
Magnesian limestone, and it ceased before that 
was entirely accomplished in all parts of the 
State, for a few prominences were left project- 
ing through the sand deposits. The material 
laid down consisted of a silicious sand, of uni- 
form, well-rounded — doubtless well-rolled — 
grains. This was evidently deposited horizon- 
tally upon the uneven limestone surface, and so 
rests in a sense unconformably upon it. Where 
the sandstone abuts against the sides of the 
limestone prominences, it is mingled with ma- 

terial derived by wave action from them, which 
tells the story of its formation. But aside from 
these and other exceptional impurities, the for- 
mation is a very pure sandstone, and is used for 
glass manufacture. At most points the sand- 
stone has never become firmly cemented and 
readily crumbles, so that it is used for mortar 
the simple handling with pick and shovel being 
sufficient to reduce it to a sand. Owing to the 
unevenness of its bottom, it varies greatly in 
thickness, the greatest yet observed being 212 
feet, but the average is less than 100 feet. Un- 
til recently, no organic reinains had ever been 
found in it, and the traces now collected are 
very meagre indeed, but they are sufficient to 
show the existence of marine life, and demon- 
strate that it is an oceanic deposit. The rarity 
of fossils is to be attributed to the porous nature 
of the rock, which is unfavorable to their pres- 
ervation. This porosity, however, subserves a 
very useful purpose, as it renders this pre-em- 
inently a water-bearing horizon, and supplies 
some of the finest artesian fountains in the 
State, and is competent to furnish many more. 
It occupies but a narrow area at the surface, 
fringing that of the Lower Magnesian limestone 
on the south. 

IV. — Trenton Limestone. 
A slight change in the oceanic conditions 
eavised a return to limestone formation, accom- 
panied with the deposit of considerable clayey 
material, which formed shale. The origin of 
the limestone is made evident by a close exam- 
ination of it, which shows it to be full of frag- 
ments of shells, corals, and other organic re- 
mains, or the impressions they have left. Count- 
less numbers of the lower forms of life flourished 
in the seas, and left their remains to be com- 
minuted and consolidated into limestone. A 
part of the time the accumulation of clayey 
matter predominated, and so layers of shale al- 
ternate with the limestone beds, and shaly 
leaves and partings occur in the limestone lay- 
ers. Unlike the calcareous strata above and 
below, a portion of these are true limestone 



containing but a very small proportion of mag- 
nesia. A sufficient amount of carbonaceous mat- 
ter is present in some layers to cause them to 
burn readily. This formation is quite highly 
metalliferous in certain portions of the lead 
region, containing zinc especially, and consider- 
able lead, with less quantities of other metals. 

The formation abounds in fossils, many of them 
well preserved, and, from their great antiquity, 
thiy possess uncommon interest. All the ani- 
m:il sub-kingd(ims, except vertebrates, are rep- 
I eseiited. The surface area of this rock borders 
the St. Peter's sandstone. Its thickness reaches 
120 feet. 





The first people of Crawford county, who 
were they? The question, of course, can never 
can be answered. We know that, scattered 
over it in various directions, there once lived a 
race, concerning which all that has come down 
to us is exceedingly shadowy. These people 
are denominated the 


Vestiges of the labor of the so-called mound 
builders still exist in Crawford county, in the 
form of earthworks consisting of mounds; some 
•udely representing animals; others seemingly 
like low battlements; while a third variety are 
simply elevations, usually conical in shape. 


On the questions of the origin and design of 
these monuments of antiquity, I have but little 
at present to say. On these questions much has 
been said and written, but from it all the world 
has become but little the wiser eh- better. Their 
existence, together with the evidence we have 
of design, taste or ambition to perpetuate the 
memory of some noted event or honored indi- 
vidual, give ample evidence of intelligence far 
in advance of the Aboriginees found here by 
the Anglo-Saxon race, who at present occupy 
the country. 

The trees frequently found growing upon 
them of 400 years' growth declare their 
antiquity and tiie recent discoveries in the cop- 
per region of Lake Superior of mines over which 
trees of the same age are growing, makes it 

* "Ancient Mounds: or, Tumuli in Crawford County," 
Kead before the Wisconsin Historical Society, at its annual 
meeting, January, 1860, by Alfred Brun?on, of Prairie du 

probable that the same race who wrought those 
mines also built these mounds. 

Who these ancient people were, whence they 
came and what became of them, have been ques- 
tions of deep and abiding interest for the last 
fifty years, or since the whites have been set- 
tling the great valley in which their works 
abound; and various methods have been re- 
sorted to to derive some plausible answer to 
eich question, but all to no purpose. Indeed, 
he who can answer one can answer the others. 
But nothing has, aft yet, come to light satisfac- 
tory to the public mind on this engrossing sub- 

The Book of Mormon, which has caused two 

civil wars, cost many lives and is now founding 
a new State, if not a new empire, among the 
mountains of California, is the first, the last 
and the only book ever published purporting to 
he a history of the people who in habited this 
country at the time when the tumuli and fortifica- 
tions were erected.* But as no one except the 
followers of the prophet give any credence 
whatever to the story, the world is not the wliit 
the wiser for the information it contains, and 
we remain in the dark, and probably shall till 
the end of time, as to who were the people who 
did this work, where they came from, what be- 
came of them, or what was their design in 
erecting these mounds. 

» The late Prof. C. S. Raflnesque wrote the Ancient An- 
nals of Kentucky, prefixed to Marshall's History of Ken- 
tucky, published in 1834. These Ancient Annals profess to 
trace the Alioriftinal history of Kentucky from the creation 
throiiBh si.v periods, down to a eompariiiivcly modi'tri date, 
giyinK quite minute details of Noah's and PcIck's llo(lll^, and 
many ci>n(iiiests and re-conquests of the i ntry by the op- 
posing Indian tribes. It is a grotesque i.roilnction, and de- 
serves to be. ranked, in point of historical authority, with the 
veritable Book of Mormon, 



Tlie fact t]iat human bones have been found 
in some of them is no evidence that they were 
erected as tombs for the honored dead; because 
the Aborigines found here by the whites, have 
long been in the habit of buryiTig their dead in 
them; and s many of these tumuli have been 
opened without finding either bones or anything 
else in them but soil, the presumption is very 
strong that the bones sometimes found in them 
are from the interments of the Indians who 
more recently occupied the country. 

For aught that I know, or any one else 
knows, they may have been built for tombs; but 
I say the finding of bones in them at this time 
is no evidence of such a design; and one very 
strong, and to me unanswerable argument in 
favor of this position, is, what must be known 
by every one, that human bones could not have 
continued in them undecayed for the space of 
400 years, the acknowledged age of these 
tumuli. In some instances, and in positions, or 
under circumstances peculiarly calculated to 
preserve them, as by embalming, or being in 
dry nitrous caves, bones have been preserved 
for a longer period; but no case can be found 
on record where such preservation has been had 
with bones exposed to the dampness of the soil, 
or mixed with the earth, as those found in 
these tumuli are. 

In some few instances slabs of stone were 
placed around the bones; but the rude masonry 
found in such cases would be no protection from 
dampness, while surrounded with a damp soil; 
and it must be admitted that thin rude masonry 
corresponds much better with the rude state of 
the modern Aborigines, than with the more 
improved state of the buililers of these ancient 
mounds; and if we suppose, which is very 
probable, that the same race which Imilt the an- 
cient works at Aztalan, also erected these 
mounds, we must suppose that their masonry 
would have been greatly in advance of an> thing 
yet discovered of the kind; and further, the de- 
cay of the work at Aztalan, shows conclusively 
that their antiquity is such that human bones 

would have long since mouldered back to their 
mother dust; for, if burnt bricks have so de- 
cayed as to render them scarcely distinguisha- 
ble from the earth with which they are inter- 
mixed, most certainly bones would have long 
since entirely disa})peared; and this fact, to- 
gether with the known fact, that the recent In- 
dian inhabitants of the country were in the 
habit of interring their dead in these mounds, 
and in the mode and manner in which bones 
have been found, shows conclusively to my 
mind, tliat the bones thus discovered are of 
more recent burial than that of the builders 
of these tumuli. 

And further, and in confirmation of this con- 
clusion, the fact that metallic substances have 
been found in these tumuli, which could not 
have been known to the natives previous to the 
discovery of the country by the whites, shows 
that the skeletons found with such substances 
must have been interred since the whites came 
to the country, which does not agree well with 
the antiquity of trees 400 years old, so fre- 
quently found on these mounds. 

The mounds found in the county of Craw- 
ford, are of various forms and sizes. On 
Prairie du Chien, on(! of the largest and high- 
est of these tumuli, having a base of some 200 
feet and about twenty feet high, of a circular 
form, was leveled for the present site of Fort 
Crawford. Another, of about the same dimen- 
sions and form, stood within the old or first 
fort built at this place by the Americans, on 
which now stands the splendid mansion of II. 
L. Dousman, Esq. A cellar, well, and ice- 
house vault, were dug in this last, and a well 
dug where t^ie first stood, but in neither were any 
evidences found of the design of their erection; 
nothing was found but bones, rifles, etc., of re- 
cent interment. 

The circular form is the most common for 
these tumuli, but many are of different forms. 
Some are from one to two hundred yards long, 
from ten to twenty feet wide, and from two to 
three feet high. These frequently have an 



open space througb them, as if intended for a 
gate, and they would have the appearance of 
breast works if they had angles, or a rear pro- 
tection, as of a fort. 

Others, especially on the dividing ridge be- 
tween the Mississippi and Wisconsin rivers, in 
towns 8 and 9 north, of range 5 west, are in the 
form of birds with their wings and tails spread 
and of deer, rabbits and other animals, and one 
which I have seen resembles an elephant. The 
birds lie spread out on the ground,while the other 
animals lie on their sides, with limbs stretched 
as if on the jump. In this region, also, some 
few mounds resemble a man lying on his face. 
These mounds are from three to four feet high, 
at the highest points, tapering off to the ex- 
tremities, corresponding with what they were 
intended to represent. 

On the margins of these two rivers, on the 
beach lands and the highest peaks of the bluffs, 
these tumuli are very numerous,and can often be 
seen from the boats passing on the river. In- 
deed there is no point yet discovered of any 
great extent, in the country, which is not hon- 
ored, to a greater or less extent, with these 
marks of ancient settlement, corresponding 
with the descriptions above given, and varying 
inform and size; some being not over ten 
feet on the base and two feet high, circular in 
form, while others, as above stated, have a 
base of '200 feet, and twenty feet elevation, 
and others are in forms of animals which 
generally are 100 feet long. And it is 
believed that at least 1,000 of them can be 
found in the county, which is, however, geo- 
graphically large. But in no case that has 
come to my knowledge, in thirteen years resi- 
dence, have bones, or other matter than earth, 
been found in them, except with evidence of 
recent Indian interment. 

One rather singular circumstance is observable 
in the construction of some of the mounds on 
Prairie du Chien, and especially those near 
the fine dwelling of B. W. Brisbois, Esq. 
They stand on the margin of the Mississippi, 

on the extreme west of the prairie, and about 
one and a half miles from the bluffs. The soil 
on the prairie is river sand intermixed with 
vegetable mould. But these tumuli are of a 
different soil, a loam, the like of which has not 
yet been discovered within several miles of its 
present location; so that, to appearance, the 
earth of which these mounds are I'omposed 
must have been brought from a considerable 

It is also a singular feature of all the mounds 
and fortifications I have examined in the west — 
and they are quite numerous — that there is no 
appearance that the earth of which they are 
composed was dug up from the side of them 
or even near by them. The surface of the sur- 
rounding soil generally comes up to the base of 
the mound on a smooth level. In some in- 
stances the mound stands on a natural ele- 
vation, showing that the entire mass of which 
it is composed was carried from below, up to 
the place of deposit. 

One such mound, which stands in a group of 
them, on the southwest angle of Prairie du 
Chien, has a base of some fifty feet, and is 
about ten feet high; but being on a natural 
elevation, it has the appearance, a short dis- 
tance from it, of being twenty feet high; yet 
there is no evidence that the earth of which 
this mound is composed, though of the common 
soil of the prairie, was taken from the neigh- 
borhood of its present location. From the top 
of this mound can be seen to advantage the ex- 
tensive low bottom lands and lakes which lie 
between the Wisconsin and Mississippi rivers, 
and were it not for the timber on the margin 
of the two rivers, their flowing currents could 
also be seen for some distance. This circum- 
stance induces the belief that it was built for a 
kind of watch-tower or looking-out place, to 
watch the approach of enemies. But the hand 
of civilization, the plow, the hoe, and the 
spade, are fast demolishing these monuments 
of antiquity. When they fall within an enclos- 
ure, and the plow breaks the sod, the action of 



the water in time of rain, and of the wind in 
time of draught, together with continued culti- 
vation, contribute to level them rapidly with 
the surrounding earth; and but a few years 
will elapse before they will be lost in the ob- 
livion of their builders, and will be forgotten, 
except as their memory will be preserved by 
the hand of intelligence on the page of the 

In reflecting upon the destinj' of this people 
— a people once so numerous and intelligent as 
those must have been, who laid up with skill 
and care, these evidences of their existence, 
taste and mental improvement — we can hardly 
avoid feelings of melancholy. It amounts to 
annihilation, so far as this world is concerned. 
We have no trace as to a ho they were, w'here 
from, or where they are gone; we only know- 
that thev lived and are dead. 

If tliey reflected as we do on tiie future and 
contemplated that in a few centuries nothing 
but these mounds would be left of their whole 
race, that not a man, not a name, not a song, 
nor even a tradition of them would be left on 
earth, their feelings mii-^t have been gloomy in 
the extreme. The idea of annihilation issaid to 
be even more painful than thoughts of a misera- 
ble existence. IJut vk turn from such melancholy 
reflections with hopes blooming with immor- 
tality. The nKMital and moral culture which 
we enjoy with the blessings of the j)en and the 
press, inspire in ;is the pleasing reflection that 
though .lur individual names may not be noted 
centuries to come, yet our race will be known 
on the page of history, and our institutions and 
the monuments we leave behind of our intelli- 
gence and wisdom, which we trust will continue 
to improve our race as they descend the stream 
of time, will bless the world, and we shall not 
have lived in vain. One object, and tiie great 
object of this asssociation is to preserve from 
oblivion those scraps of history which are fast 
passing into forgetfulness, and by embodying 
them into a history, transmit to posterity not 
only our name, as a people, but also such facts. 

snatched from the destructive hand of time, as 
will cast some light, the best we have, on the 
past history of the State; and though we have 
not omniscience and cannot solve the historic 
problems of the past to our entire satisfaction, 
yet we can do much for the infoimation of 
ourselves and of our fellow-men, and thus dis- 
charge a debt we owe to others for the benefits 
we have derived from histories of other 
countries and other times. 



[From Lapbam's "Antiquities of Wisconsin."] 

The Wisconsin river is the largest stream 
within the State, having its source on the 
boundary line between Wisconsin and 
Michigan, in a small sheet of water known as 
"Lac Vieux Desert," and running into the 
Mississippi at Prairie du Chien. Its general 
course is nearly south as far as the Winnebago 
portage, where it almost unites with the Nee- 
nah. At this point it is suddenly deflected to- 
wards the southwest and west. Its length 
cannot be less than 400 miles, and it has an 
aggregate descent of about 900 feet, or two and 
a quarter feet per mile. It drains an area of 
about 1,100 square miles. The valley of this 
fine stream, from Winnebago portage to its 
juiu^tion with the Mississippi, may be deemed the 
great central seat of ]io])ulation at the time of 
the erection of the animal-sluiped earthworks; 
at least we must so infer from their comparative 
abundance and im|)orlance along that valley. 

The first published notice of the mounds in 
the valley of the Wisconsin, is in the narrative 
of Long's Second Expedition, in 1823. It is 
here stated that "one of the block-houses of 
the fort (at Prairie du Chien) is situated on a 
large mound, which ai)pears to be artificial. It 
w:is excavated; but we have not heard that any 
bones or other remains were found in it." 

Mr. Alfred IJrunson, in a paper on the "An- 
cient Mounds of Crawford county, Wisconsin," . 
read before the State Historical Society, re- 
marks that another similar one formerly ex- 



isted on the prairie, now removed; but no evi- 
dences of the design of their erection were 
found — nothing was observed but bones, 
rifles, etc., of recent interment. 

"One mound, standing in a group at the 
southwest angle of this prairie, has a base of 
some fifty feet, and is about ten feet high, on 
an eminence of about the same elevation 
From lis top can be seen to advantage the ex- 
tensive low bottom lands which lie between the 
Wisconsin and Mississippi rivers; and were it 
not for the timber on the margin of the two 
rivers, their flowing currents could also be 
seen for some distance. Tliis circumstance 
induces the belief that it was built for a kind 
of watch-tower, or look-out place, to watch the 
approach of enemies." 

Trace of mounds were discovered by me (in 
1852) along the whole e.Ytent of the prairie, 
apparently similar to others found in the vi- 
cinity; but fr^m cultivation, and the light 
sandy nature of the materials, they are now 
almost entirely obliterated. Tlie large round 
tumuli, situated along the island between the 
"slough" and the main channel of the Missis- 
sippi, are so near the level of the river that their 
bases are often washed by the floods. In 1S26, 
at the highest known floods, (it being eight 
feet higher than the high water of 1832, and 
about twenty-six feet above the lowest stage,) 
the mounds were all that could be seen of this 
island above the water. These were doubtless 
for burial, and of less age than the more elab- 
orate works in the interior of the country. 

Below the town and fort, towards the month 
of the Wisconsin, are similar tumuli, equally 
subject to overflow ; and on the high bluffs 
south of that river are some look-out stations or 

Advantage is taken of these elevations for the 
foundations of the better class of dwelling 
houses, above the reach of high water ; being, 
. perhaps, the only instance in which the ancient 
works are rendered useful to the present inhab- 
itants. In general it is deemed necessary to 

remove them, as incumbrances, rather than to 
preserve them as matters of convenience. 

Some traces of a ditch and embankments ob- 
served on the island, evidently of a military 
character, proved, on inquiry, to be the remains 
of the original American fort that was taken 
by the British in the War of 1812. 

It is quite clear that this interesting place 
has been a favorite one with all the different 
tribes or races of inhabitants, from the days of 
the first mound builders to the present time ; 
and the construction of a railroad (soon to be 
completed) connecting this point with Lake 
Michigan, at Milwaukee, will doubtless render 
it one of the greatest importance. 

Proceeding up the Wisconsin, the first local- 
ity requiring notice is called by the French the 
Petit Caj) (ui Gres ; wliich was visited by 
Messrs. Keating, Say and Seymour, of Long's 
exploring party, and of which the following 
account is given : "They found the bluff which 
borders on the Wisconsin, about four miles 
above its mouth, covered with mounds, para- 
pets, etc. ; but no plan or system could be ob- 
served among them, neither could they trace 
any such thing as a regular inclosure. Among 
tliese works they saw an embankment about 
eighty-five yards long, divided towards its mid- 
dle by a sort of gateway about four yards wide. 
This parapet was elevated from three to four 
feet ; it stood very near to the edge of the 
bluff, as did also almost all the other embank- 
ments which they saw. No connection what- 
ever was observed between the parapets and 
the mounds, except in one case, where a parapet 
was cut off by a sort of gateway and a mound 
placed in front of it. In one instance the 
works, or parapet, seemed to form a cross, of 
which three parts could be distinctly traced ; 
but these were short ; this was upon a project- 
ing point of the highland. The mounds which 
the party observed were (Scattered without any 
apparent symmetry over the whole of the ridge 
of highland which borders upon the river. 
They were very numerous, and generally from 



six to eight feet high, and from eight to twelve 
in diameter. In one case a number of them, 
amounting perhaps to twelve or fifteen, were 
seen all arranged in one line, t arallel to the 
edge of the bluff, but at some distance from it. 

Mr. Brunson, in a paper read before the Min- 
isterial Association of the Methodist Church, 
held at Viroqua, Sept. 7, 1858, says : 

"History is among the most pleasing and en- 
tertaining of human studies. By itwe converse 
and become familiar wiih men and things of 
ages long in the past, and live, as it were, from 
the beginning of time to the present hour; but 
we cannot extend our researches into the future. 
History relates to the past. Prophecy to the 

"History embraces the biography of men and 
Nations; their ups and downs, rise and fall, 
detailing the incidents which have been, the 
changes which liave occurred, the improvements 
which have been made, and when known, the 
reasons therefor, which is the ^^A/teo^Ay of 

"There are, however, many things of interest 
on the face of the earth of which we have no 
history, for the reason that none has reached 
us, if any was ever written; of such we can only 
draw inferences of their causes from the effects 
which lie before us. Such is the case in refer- 
ence to the ancient tumuli which abound to an 
unknown extent in the western Slates, but in 
none of them more numerously than in oui- own. 

'■'riieir forms, and the materials of which 
they are made, clearly indicate tlie work of 
liuman liands, and intelligence and design on 
the part of the builders. The forts and fortifi- 
cations indicate the existence of wars among 
tliem, and that the combatants had more or less 
knowledge of military Mcicnce. In some of 
them the existence of st)mething like brick or 
pottery indicates some advances in the arts of 
civilization, much more so than anything found 
among the aborigines which the Anglo-Saxon 
race found in the country. But the present 
race of Indians have no traditions of the people 

who made these mounds, nor of the design for 
which they were built. 

"The age in which these builders lived, or 
the distance of time from the present, is inferred 
from the age of trees found growing in the 
mounds, some of which, from their annual 
rings, are supposed to be 400 years old. But 
who were the builders, whence they came, 
whither they went, or by what means they be- 
came extinct, lies in the impenetrable darkness 
of the past, and is not likely to be known in 
time. But there is an interest excited in the 
mind on seeing these ancient works, a written 
history of which would highly gratify, if it 
were authentic, or believed so to be. This 
interest in us shows the duty to the future, to 
record what we know of the past or present, for 
its edification, as we would that others should 
have done unto us, even so we should do to 
those who are to follow us. 

"As the matter relative to these mounds now 
stands, conjecture alone can answer the inquiries 
of the antiquarian, which in most cases is as un- 
satisfactory as the total darkness in which the 
history of those times is now enveloped. Some 
have thought that these mounds were thrown 
up as monuments over the distinguished dead, 
and have inferred this from the fact that in 
some of them relics have been found. But as 
the most and the largest of them, on examina- 
tion, are found to contain no such remains, the 
inference is not well founded. 

"That human bones and Lulian relics have 
been found in some of them of late years is no 
[iroof that they were erected for places of in- 
terment; for since the whites have been in the 
country, our modern Indians have been in the 
habit, more or less, of i)uryini; their dead in 
them, and frequently guns, axes, kettles, etc., 
have been found with the bones — and some- 
times without them — which shows that the in- 
terment took place since the whites came to the 
continent, and the fact that such metallic sub- 
stances have been found without the bones, 
shows that if men were buried there at first, 



their bones could not have continuetl in a state 
of preservation until this time. 

"It is worthy of remark that while in Ohio 
the most pi'ominent of these tumuli were forts 
or fortifications in Wisconsin, but few of that 
description are found. I can now call to mind 
but one such, that at Aztalan, and in traveling 
extensively in the State for twenty-two years, I 
have noticed but few of these mounds south of 
a line drawn east from the mouth of the Wis- 
consin river to the lake, while north of this line 
and between the Wisconsin and Mississippi 
rivers there are probably 1,000 of them. In 
Crawford county alone there are at least 500, 
100 of which can be found in the towns of 
Prairie du Chien and Wauzeka. 

"The evidences of ancient mining found in 
the Lake Superior copper region, with trees on 
them of 400 years' growth or more, indicating 
some degree of intelligence and skill, makes it 
probable that those mines were wrought by the 
same race of people who made the mounds, and 
at about the same time; and yet, there being no 
copper relics found in these mounds, makes it 
probable that either they had no commerce 
with each other, or that they were few in num- 
ber and emigrated from place to place, to 
avoid their pursuing enemies, and that those 
mines were their last retreat, from which they 
disappeared from this country, either by emi- 
gration or by being destroyed. The latier, I 
think, is the most probable." 


The earliest record we have of the occupa- 
tion of Crawford county and contiguous ter- 
ritory, by the Indians, is that given on the map 
of Samuel Champlain, dated in lo32. It is 
there seen that reports had reached the ears of 
the French upon the waters of the St. Lawrence, 
of a great river to the westward of Lake Huron 
and to the southward of Lake Superior, but 
which it was said flowed north into the lake 
last mentioned. This was a vague account of 
the Mississippi. Upon that river are located 

savages, which, probably, were those afterward 
known as 


Bands of this Nation occupied the whole 
country immediately north of the Wisconsin 
and adjacent to the Mississippi. It is not 
known that they had any village within what 
is now Crawford county; but this region was, 
probably, their hunting grounds, if they did 
not actually occupy it with their wigwams. 

It was known to the French, also, before 
any white man had ever set foot upon any part 
of Wisconsin or the northwest, that these Sioux 
were in the habit of going in their canoes to 
trade with the Winnebagoes, who were located 
at that time (before 1634) around Lake Winne- 
bago. Farther than this, no knowledge had 
been gained of these savages. Not many 
years afterward they must have withdrawn 
I farther up the Mississippi, leaving the country 
upon and down this river for some distance 
from the mouth of the Wisconsin, without 
inhabitants. At this time, the nearest savages 
eastward, were the Kickapoos, Miamis and 
Mascoutins, who were located on Fox river 
above Lake Winnebago. Such was the case in 
1634, when John Nicolet, the first man to 
explore the present State of Wisconsin, reached 
that river. 

"The first inhabitants of this region," says the 
Rev. Alfred IJrunson, "included in the original 
county of Crawford, of whom we have any 
knowledge, except from ancient tumuli, were 
the Dakota or Sioux Indians. The builders of 
those tumuli are so far lost in the past, that no 
pretence is made to a history of them, except 
in the pretended visions of Joe Smith, in his 
so called Golden Bible. When the French 
missionaries and traders from Canada first 
visited the country south of Lake Superior, 
east of the Mississippi, and north and west of 
the Wisconsin, the Sioux were the lords of the 

"I learned from the Chippewas at La Pointe, 
when I was agent for the United States among 



them in 1842-3, tliat previous to their crossing 
Lake Superior to settle upon its southern shores, 
the Sioux occupied the whole country south of 
it, and as far east, at least, as Ke-\ve-wa-non 
Bay, then called Che-goi-me-gon; for there, in 
1661, it seems they captured and killed the 
missionary Rene Mesnard, whose cassock and 
breviary were afterwards found among the 
Sioux, kept by them as amulets." * 


What is now Crawford county and its surround- 
ing country remained a derelict region until 
finally the Sacs and Foxes from the east came to 
Fox river and then moved westward to the 
Wisconsin. Of all the tribes who have inhab- 
ited this State, they are the most noted. The 
Sacs were sometimes called Sauks or Saukies 
and the Foxes were frequently known as the 
Outagamies. They are of the Algonquin 
family, and are first mentioned in 1665, by 
Father Allouez, but as separate tribes. After- 
ward, however, because of the identity of their 
language, and their associations, they were and 
still are considered one Nation. In December, 
1669, Allouez found upon the shores of Green 
bay a village of Sacs, occupied also by members 
of otiier tribes, and early in 1670 he visited a 
village of llie same Indians located upon the Fox 
river of Green bay, at a distance of four leagues 
from its mouth. Here a device of these In- 
dians for catching fish arrested the attention 
of th(^ missionary. " From one side of the 
river to the other," he writes, "they made a 
barricade, planting great stakes, two fatiioms 
from the water, in such a manner that there is, 
as it were, a bridge above for the fishes, who by 
the aid of a little bow-net, easily take sturgeons 
and all other kinds of fish which this pier stops, 
alihough the water does not cease to flow be- 
tween the stakes." When the Jesuit father first 
obtained, five years jirevious, a knowledge of 
this tribe, they were repre.-'entcd as savage 

above all others, great in numbers, and without 

any ]>ennanent dwelling place. The Foxes 

• Bancroft's history of the United States, Vol. 3, P. 117. 

were of two stocks — one calling themselves 
Outagamies or Foxes, whence our English 
name ; the other, Wusquakink, or men of red 
clay, the name now used by the tribe. They 
lived in early times with their kindred the 
Sacs east of Detroit, and as some say, near the 
St. Lawrence. They were driven west, and 
settled at Saginaw, a name derived from the 
Sacs. Thence they were forced by the Iro- 
quois to Green bay ; but were compelled to 
leave that place and settle on Fox river. 

Allouez, on the •24tli of April, 1670, arrived 
at a village of the Foxes, situated on Wolf 
river, a northern tributary of the Fox. "The 
Nation," he declares, "is renowned for being 
numerous ; they have more than 400 men bear- 
ing arms ; the number of women and children 
is greater, on account of polygamy which ex- 
ists among them- — each man having commonly 
four wives, some of them six, and others as high 
as ten." The missionary found that the Foxes 
had retreated to those parts to escape the perse- 
cutions of the Iroquois. Allouez established 
among these Indians his Mission of St. Mark, 
rejoicing in the fact that in less than two yeais 
he had baptized "sixty children and some 
adults." The Foxes, at the summons of De la 
Barre, in 1684, sent warriors against the Five 
Nations. They also took part in Denonville's 
more serious campaign ; but soon after became 
hostile to the French. As early as 1693, they 
iiad plundered several on their way to trade 
with the Sioux, alleging that they were carry- 
ing arms and ammunitions to their ancient ene- 
mies frequently causing them to make port- 
ages to the southward in crossing from Lake 
Michigan to the Mississi])p). Afterward they 
became reconciled to the French ; but the rec- 
onciliation was of short duration. In 1712, 
Fort Detroit, then defended by only a handful 
of men, was attacked by them in Conjui ction 
with the Mascoutins and Kickapoos. However, 
in the end, by calling in friendly Indians, the 
garrison not only protected themselves but 



were enabled to act on the offensive, destroying 
the greater part of the besieging force. 

The Nation continued their ill will to the 
French. The consequence was that their terri- 
tory in 1716 had been invaded and they were 
reduced to sue for peace. But their friendship 
was not of long continuance. In 1718 the Foxes 
numbered 500 men and "abounded in women 
and children." They are spoken of at that date 
as being very industrious, raising large quanti- 
ties of Indian corn. In 1728 another expedition 
was sent against them by the French. Mean- 
while the Menomonees had also become hostile; 
so, too, the Sacs, who were now the allies of 
the Foxes. The result of the enterprise was, 
an attack upon and the defeat of a number of 
Monomonees ; the burning of the wigwams of 
the Winnebagoes (after passing the deserted 
village of the Sacs upon the Fox river), that 
tribe, also, at this date being hostile ; and the 
destruction of the fields of the Foxes. Tliey 
were again attacked in their own country by 
the French, in 1730, and defeated. In 1734 
both the Sacs and Foxes came in conflict with 
the same foe ; but this time the French were 
not as successful as on previous expeditions. 
In 1730 the Sacs and Foxes were "connected 
with the government of Canada ;" but it is 
certain they were far from being friendly to 
the French. 

The conflict between France and Great Brit- 
ain, -commencing in 1754, found the Sacs and 
Foxes allied with the former power, against the 
English, although not long previous to this time 
they were the bitter enemies of the Frencli. At 
the close of that contest so disastrous to the in- 
terests of France in North America, these tribes 
readily gave in their adhesion to the conquerors, 
asking that English traders might be sent them. 
The two Nations, then about equally divided, 
numbered, in 1761, about 700 warriors. Neither 
of the tribes took part in Pontiac's war, but they 
befriended the English. The Sacs had emigrated 
farther to the westward; but the Foxes, at :east 
a portion of them, still remained upon the wa- 

ters of the river of Green bay, which perpet- 
uates their name. A few years later, however, 
and the former were occupants of the upper 
Wisconsin ; also to a considerable distance be- 
low the portage, where their chief town was 
located. Further down the same stream was 
the upper village of the Foxes, while tlieir lower 
one was situated near its mouth at the site of 
the present city of Prairie du Cliien. At this 
date, 1766, and even later,whatis now Crawford 
county, was within the territory claimed as 
theirs. Gradually, however, they retreated 
down the Mississippi until, before the close of 
the century all their possessions in what is now 
Wisconsin, was in the extreme southwest. They 
no longer had their hunting grounds to the 
northward of the Wisconsin river. Another 
tribe had, as it were, crowded them out. 

During the War of the Revolution, the Sacs 
and Foxes continued the firm friends of the 
English. In 1804 they ceded their lands south 
of the Wisconsin river to the United States ; 
so that they no longer were owners of any lands 
within this State. From that date, therefore, 
these allied tribes cannot be considered as be- 
longing to the Indian Nations of Wisconsin. 
They were generally friendly to Great Britain 
during the War of 181V-15, but they soon made 
peace with the United States after that contest 
ended. A striking episode in their subsequent 
history is the Black Hawk War, which will be 
narrated in a subsequent chapter. The exact 
date of the Foxes leaving the Wisconsin river 
country is unknown. They sold the prairie at 
the mouth of that stream to some Canadian 
French traders, in 1781, and subsequently vaca- 
ted their village. Probably about the begin- 
ning of the present century they had al)andoned 
this region as their home, although they long 
after visited it for the purposes of trade. 

[By Jonathan Carver.] 

On the 8th of October, (1766), we got our 
canoes into the Ouisconsin river, which at this 
place is more than a hundred yards wide and 



the next day arrived at the great town of the 
Saukies. This is the largest and best built 
Indian town I ever saw. It contains about 
ninety houses, each large enough for several 
families. These are built of hewn plank, neatly 
jointed and covered with bark, so compactly 
as to keep out the most penetrating rains. Be- 
fore the doors are placed comfortable sheds, in 
which the inhabitants sit, when the weather 
will permit, and smoke their pipes. The streets 
are regular and spacious, so that it appears more 
like a civilized town than the abode of savages. 
The land near the town is very good. On their 
plantations, which lie adjacent to their houses, 
and which are neatly laid out, they raise quan- 
tities of Indian corn, beans, melons, etc., so 
that this place is esteemed the best market for 
traders to furnish themselves with provisions 
of any within 800 miles of it. 

The ?aukies can raise about 300 warriors, who 
are generally emjiloyf d every summer in mak- 
ing excursions into the territories of the Illi- 
nois and Pawnee Nations, from whence they 
return with a great number of slaves. But 
those people frequently retaliate, and, in their 
turn, destroy many of the Saukies, which I 
judge to be the reason why they increase no 

Whilst 1 stayed here I took a view of some 
mountains, (Blue Mounds), that lay about fifteen 
miles to the southward, and al>ounded in lead 
ore. I ascended one of the highest of these, 
and li:id an extensive view of the country. For 
nianv miles nothing was to be seen but lesser 
mountains, which appeared at a distance like 
liaycocks, they being free from trees. Only a 
few groves of hickory and stunted oaks, covered 
some of the valleys. 

So plentiful is lead here that I saw large 
quantities of it lying about the streets in the 
town belonging to the Saukies, and it seemed to 
be as good as the produce of other countries. 
On the 10th of October we proceeded down 
the river, and the next day reached the first 
town of the Outagaraies, This town contained 

about fifty houses, but we found most of them 
deserted, on account of an epidemical disorder 
that had lately raged among them, and carried 
off more than one half of the inhabitants. -The 
greater part of those who survived had retired 
into the woods to avoid the contagion. 

On the 15th we entered that extensive river, 
the Mississippi. The Otnsconsin, from the car- 
rying place to the part where it falls into the 
Mississippi, flows with a smooth but strong cur- 
rent ; the water of it is exceedingly clear, and 
through it you may perceive a fine and sandy 
bottom, tolerably free from rocks. In it are a 
few islands, the soil of which appeared to be 
good, though somewhat woodj. The land near 
the river also seemed to be, in general, excel- 
lent; but that at a distance is very fidl of moun- 
tains, where, it is said, there are many lead 

About five miles from the junction of the 
rivers I observed the ruins of a large town, in 
a very pleasing situation. On in(juiring of the 
neighboring Indians why it was thus deserted, I 
was informed that, about thirty years ago, the 
Great Spirit appeared on the top of a pyramid 
of rocks, which lay at a little distance from it 
toward the west, and warned them to quit their 
habitations ; for the land on which they were 
built belonged to liim, and be had occasion 
for it. As a proof that he, who gave them these 
orders, was really the Great Spirit, he further 
told them that the grass should immediately 
spring up on those very rocks from whence he 
now addressed them, which they knew to be 
bare and banen. The Indians obeyed, and soon 
after discovered that this miraculous alteration 
had taken place, 'l^hey showed me the sj)0t, 
but the growth of the grass appeared to be no 
ways supernatural. I apprehended this to have 
been a stratagem of the French or S])aniards to 
answer some selfish view ; but in what manner 
they effected their pur])ose I know not. This 
people, soon after their removal, built a town 
on the bank of the Mi88i8sip])i, the mouth 
of the Ouisconsin, at a place called by the 



French Les Prairies les Chiens, which signifies 
the Dog Plains ; it is a large town and contains 
about 300 families ; the houses are well built, 
after the Indian manner, and pleasantly situated 
on a very rich soil, from which they raise every 
necessary of life in great abundance. I saw here 
many horses of a good size and shape. This 
town is a great mart, where all the adjacent 
tribes, and even those who inhabit the most re- 
mote branches of the Mississippi, annually as- 
semble about the latter end of May, bringing 
with them their furs to dispose of to the traders. 
But it is not always that they conclude their 
sale here ; this is determined by a general coun- 
cil of the chiefs, who consult whether it would 
be more conducive to their interests to sell their 
goods at this place, or carry them on to Louisi- 
ana or Michiilimackinac ; according to the de- 
cision of this council, they either proceed far- 
ther or return to their different homes. 

The Mississippi, at the entrance of the Ouis- 
consin, near which stands a mountain of con- 
siderable height, is about half a mile over ; but 
opposite to the last mentioned town, it appears 
to be more than a mile wide and full ot 
islands, the soil of which is extraordinarily rich 
and but thinly wooded. 

[By Schoolcraft, 1820.] 

The first we hear of these people (the Foxes) 
is from early missionaries of New France, who 
call them, in a list drawn up for the govern- 
ment in 1V36, "Gens du Sang" and Miskaukis. 
The latter I found to be the name they apply to 
themselves. We get nothing, however, by it. 
It means red earth, being a compound from 
■ni'isk-icau, red, and cmkie, earth. They are a 
branch of the great Algonquin family. The 
French, who formed a bad opinion of them 
as their history opened, bestowed on them the 
name of Renouard, from which we derive their 
long standing popular name. Their traditions 
attribute their origin to eastern portions of 
America. Mr. Gates, who acted as my inter- 
preter and is well acquainted with their lan- 

guages and customs, informs me that their tradi- 
tions refer to their residence on the north banks 
of the St. Lawrence, near the ancient cataraqui. 
They appear to have been a very erratic, 
spirited, warlike and treacherous tribe, dwelling 
but a short time at a spot, and pushing west- 
ward as their affairs led them, till they finally 
reached the Mississippi, which they must have 
crossed after 1766, for Carver found them liv- 
ing in villages on the Wisconsin. At Saginaw 
they appeared to have formed a fast alliance 
with the Sauks, a tribe to whom they are closely 
allied by language and history. They figure in 
the history of Indian events about old Michili- 
mackinac, where they played pranks under the 
not very definite title of Muscodainsug, but are 
first conspicuously noted while they dwelt on 
the river bearing their name, which falls into 
Green bay, Wisconsin.* The Chippewas, with 
whom they have strong affinity of language, 
call them Outagamie, and ever deemed them a 
sanguinary and unreliable tribe. The French 
defeated them in a sanguinary battle at Butte 
de Mort, and by this defeat drove them from 
Fox River. 

Their present numbers cannot be accurately 
given. I was informed that the village I visited 
contained 250 souls. They have a large village 
at Rock Island, where the Foxes and Sauks 
live together, which consistsof sixty lodges, and 
numbers 300 souls. One-half of these may be 
Sauks. 'I'hey have another village at the mouth 
of Turkey river ; altogether they may muster 
from 460 to 500 souls. \ et, they are at war 
with most of the tribes around them, except 
the lowas, Sauks and Kickapoos. They are en- 
gaged in a deadly and apparently successful 
war against the Sioux tribes. They recently 
killed nine men of that Na-tion, on the Terre 
Blue river, and a party of twenty men are now 
absent, in the same direction, under a half-breed 
named Morgan. They are on bad terms with 
the Osages and Pawnees, of the Missouri, and 

*Thi8 name was first applied to a territory in 1836. 



not on the best terms with their neighbors, the 

I again embarked at 4 o'clock a. m. (sUi). My 
men were stout fellows, and worked witli hearty 
will, and it was thought possilile to reach the 
prairie during the day by hard and late push- 
ing We passed Turkey river at 2 o'clock, and 
they boldly plied their paddles, sometimes ani- 
mating their labors with a song; but the 
Mississippi proved too stout for us, and some- 
time after night-fall we put ashore on an 
island, before reaching the Wisconsin. 

In ascending the river this day, I observed the 
pelican, which exhibited itself in a flock stand- 
ing on a low sandy spot of an island This 
bird has a clumsy and unwieldy look, from the 
du)ilicate membrane attached to its lower 
niandible, which is constructed so as when 
inflated to give it a bag-like appearance. A 
shoit sleep served to restore the men, and we 
were again in our canoes the next morning 
(9th) before I could certainly tell tlie time by 
my watch. I'ayligiit had not yet broke when 
we passeil the influx of the Wisconsin, and we 
reached the prairie under a full chorus and 
landed at 6 o'clock. 


The various tribes, in visiting the "])rairi('," 
or in passing up and down the Mississippi, 
sometimes came in deadly conflict within the 
present limits of this county, since the first set- 
tlement iiere by white men — the result, in many 
case-*, of ancient hostilities existing between 
them. Two writers have well described some 
of tliese conflicts, and their accounts arc ap- 



[I.— ny Mrs H. S. Baird, or Green Day] 

During tlie first lialf of the present century, 

there existed between diflFcrcnt Indian tribes of 

the north and west, a succession of sanguinary 

wars. The conflicts between the contending 

partie^ were marked by the characteristic traits 

of cruelty and ferocity of a barbarous race. 

The tribes engaged in these hostilities were the 
Sioux, Chippe" as, Sacs, Foxes and Winneba- 
goes. Their battles were not always fought in 
their own country, nor on t' eir own lands. 
Whenever and wherever a hostile ]iarly met, a 
contest was sure to be the result; and many 
incidents connected with this warfare were 
observed by the early settlers of Wisconsin, one 
of which I witnessed, and will relate. 

In the month of May, 1830, with my family, 
F visited Prairie dii Chien, on the Mississippi; 
we were guests of the late Joseph Rolette, 
then a trader, and agent of the American Fur 
Company. One evening, a few days after our 
arrival, we were startled by hearing the con- 
tinual and successive reports of fire-arras, ap- 
parently on the Mississippi below. The firing 
continued for an hour or more, and was suc- 
ceeded by sounds of Indian drums and savage 
j'ells, with an occasional discharge of guns. 

The family having retired at the usual time, 
were aroused from their slumbers about mid- 
night by hearing foot-steps on the piazza, con- 
versation in the Indian language, and finally by 
knocking on the door and window shutters. 
Mr. Rolette immediately arose and went out to 
ascertain the cause of the disturbance, when he 
was informed that a l)loody battle had been 
fought, and the visitors were the victors, and 
had called up their trader to inform him of 
their victory, and to obtain the necessary spirit 
water to celebrate the glorious event in regular 
savage style. Their wants were supplied, of 
course, when tliey took their leave, but not to 
sleep; neither could we sleep, as the warriors 
kept up through the night a most horrible pow- 
wow, enlivened by savage yells, all plainly 
within our hearing. 

In the morning we heard the particulars of 
the savage fight, and during the day witnessed 
one of the most disgusting and revolting exhi- 
bitions that human beings could display. 

On the day before the battle, or rather mas- 
sacre, a war party of some twenty or twenty- 
five Sioux encamped on an island opposite 



Praii-ie du Chien. They were there joined by 
a few Menomonees, who volunteered to assist 
their friends, the Sioux. It appears that the 
latter had previously received information that 
on that day a party of Sacs and Foxes, their 
inveterate enemies, would leave their village, 
situated on the Mississippi, some distance below 
Prairie du Chien, intending to visit the latter 
place ; and that they would encamp for the 
night at a regular camping ground, near the 
mouth of the Wisconsin river. 

In the afternoon of that day, the Sioux war 
party embarked in several canoes, and descend- 
ed the river. Arriving near the spot where 
they knew their intended victims would en- 
camp, they drew their canoes on land, and care- 
fully hid them in the thick woods, and then 
selected a spot covered with a dense growth of 
bushes, and within a short gun-shot of the 
landing place on the camping ground. Here, 
with true Indian cunning, they lay in ambush, 
awaiting the arrival of the unsuspecting Sacs 
and Foxes. No fire was made, and the still- 
ness of death reigned in the forest. Nor had 
they long to wait for the arrival of their foes. 

Between sunset and dark, the party, in three 
or four canoes, arrived at the fatal landing 
place, and dis-embarked. It consisted of 
eighteen persons, one old chief, one squaw, one 
boy about fourteen years old and fifteen 
warriors. Upon landing, the party commenced 
unloading the canoes. The concealed war 
party remained perfectly quiet, scarcely breath- 
ing, so that their victims might be completely 
surprised. After all had landed, and while 
carrying their effects on shore, leaving their 
guns and war-clubs in the canoes, the party in 
ambush bounded to their feet, with a horrible 
yell, and fired a murderous volley at the sur- 
prised party, by which all fell except one man 
and the boy. The former reached a canoe, 
seized a loaded gun, and discharged it, mortally 
wounding one of the Sioux ; but the poor Sac 
was soon despatched, and the only one of the 
eighteen who survived was the boy, who hap- 

pened to be in a canoe. He seized a paddle, 
pushed into the stream, and made his escape 
down the swift current of the river. 

After the massacre, all who yet breathed 
were despatched, and horribly mutilated. 
Hands, feet, fingers, ears and scalps were out 
off, and more horrible still, the heart of the 
aged chief was cut from his breast, and all 
taken by the victors as trophies of the bloody 

On the day succeeding the murder, the victo- 
rious party assembled, and accompanied by a 
few squaws, paraded the streets of Prairie du 
Chien, with the monotonous sounding drum 
•and rattle, and displaying on poles the scalps 
and dismembered human fragments taken from 
the bodies of their victims. The whole party 
was painted with various colors, wore feathers, 
and carried their tomahawks, war-clubs and 
scalping-knives. Stopping in front of the 
principal houses in the village, they danced the 
war-dance and scalp-dance, ending with yells 
characteristic of incarnate devils. 

The mangled limbs were still fresh and bleed- 
ing; one old squaw had carried on a pole the 
entire hand, with a long strip of skin from the 
arm of one of the murdered men, elevated above 
her head, the blood trickling down upon her 
hair and face, while she kept up the death-song, 
and joined in the scalp-dance. After this exhi- 
bition, which lasted two or three hours, the 
warriors went to a small mound, about 200 yards 
from Mr. Rolette's residence, and in plain sight 
made a fire and roasted the heart of the old 
murdered chief, and then divided it into small 
pieces among the several warriors, who devoured 
it, to inspire them wi'h courage, and "make 
their hearts glad." 

The whole scene was shocking and disgust- 
ing in the extreme, and such a one, we hope, 
never again will be witnessed in a civilized 

The incidents just related occurred in a town 
containing a civilized (?) population of 600 or 
800 inhabitants, under the walls of the U. S. 



garrison, and within musket shot of the fort. 
Neitlier civil nor military authorities made any 
effort to prevent the exhibition of the revolting 
and savage trophies of the sanguinary battle. 
In the afternoon, the party of Sioux warriors 
enibarkeil in their canoes and ascended the Mis- 
sissippi, on their return to their own village, 
leaving on the minds and memories of those 
who witnessed these horrible and frantic orgies 
recollections not soon to be forgotten. 

11.— By James H. Lockwood. 
In 1830 a party of Sauks and Foxes killed 
some Sioux, on or about the head-waters of Red 
Cedar river, in the now State of Iowa; and the 
same season a band of Fox Indians, who resided 
about where Dubuque now is, had occasion to 
visit Prairie du Chien on business with the 
agent, whom they had previously informed that 
tliey would arrive on a certain day.' An Indian 
called the Kettle was their chief. It was gener- 
ally believed that John Marsh gave the Sioux 
information of the coming of the Foxes, and of 
the lime they were expected; and on the morn- 
ing of the day appointed for the arrival of ihe 
Foxes at Prairie du Chien, :i small war p:nty of 
young Sioux made their appearance here, and 
joined by a few of the Menoinonee young men, 
proceeded down the Mississijipi to the lower 
end of liie Prairie du Pierreaux, some twelve or 
tilleen miles below Prairie du Chien, where a 
narrow ciiannel of the Mississippi runs close to 
that end of the prairie, fringed with small trees, 
bushes and grass. They knew the custom of 
the Indians in going up stream to avail them- 
selves of all such side channels, as there was 
less current in them than in the broad river; 
and secreting themselves among the bushes, 
trees and grass, awaited their unsuspecting vic- 
tims. When the Foxes came within point 
blank shot, they all fired upon them, killing 
their chief Kettle and several others. The 
Foxes finding their chief killed, returned down 
the river to carry the news of their misfortunes 
to the tribe, while the Sioux and Menomonees 
returned home with the tidings of their victory 

and to dance over it. They passed through 
Prairie du Chien, and remained a short time 
here, but for some unaccountable reason, no no- 
tice whatever was taken of it. 

The signs of several war parties of the Foxes 
were reported to have been seen on the opposite 
side of the river during the year; but they ef- 
fected nothing until sometime, I think, in June, 
1831, when a considerable number of Menomo- 
nees had collected at Prairie du Chien, and en- 
camped on an island near the eastern shore of 
'the Mississippi, about one-fourth of a mile from 
the old Fort Crawford. They had obtained 
whisky enough for all to get socially drunk up- 
on — and it is rare to find a Menomonee who will 
not get drunk when he has a chance — and they 
had carried their revels far into the night, until 
men, women and children were beastly drunk. 
About two hours before day, a Fox war party, 
that had been watching their movements, fell 
upon them in that helpless state and killed 
about thirty of them. By this time some of the 
more sober of them were aroused, and com- 
menced firing upon the Foxes; who fled down 
the river, pursued a short distance by the Me- 

Thomas P. Burnett, the sub-Indian agent, 
was sleeping with me in my store. It being veiy 
warm weather, we had made a bed of blankets 
on the counter, when about two hours before 
daylight, we were awakened l)y the cries of a 
Menomonee woman at the store door. We let 
her in, when she told us of the disaster to the 
Menomonees. Mr. Burnett took my horse and 
went to inform Gen. Street, the Indian agent, 
who lived about four miles above this, and who 
arrived about daylight and gave the first int'or- 
mation to the fort. Although liiere had been a 
great firing of guns and hallooing among the 
Indians, the sentinels had reported nothing of 
it to the officers; but on hearing of the affair, 
the commandant immediately dispatched a com- 
pany of men in boats after the Foxes, but they 
did not overtake them. The government de- 
manded of the Sauks to deliver up tht perpe- 




trators of this deed. The Foxes fled to the 
Sauks, and their chief, Kettle, being dead, they 
remained among and amalgamated with them, 
and have not since continued a separate Nation 
or tribe. I have always believed this to be the 
origin of the Black Hawk War. There were, I 
suppose, other causes of discontent, but I believe 
that this transaction was the immediate cause 
of the movements of Black Hawk. 


The same year, 1830, the Fox and Sauk In- 
dians killed some Sioux, at the head of Cedar 
river, in Iowa. Capt. Dick Mason* started 
with a number of troops for the scene of dis- 
turbance, and I went along as guide. We ar- 
rived at the place of the fight, found every- 
thing quiet and all we did was to turn about 
and go back the way we came. 

Soon after, the Sioux and a number of Monom- 
onees attacked a party of Sauks and Foxes at Prai 
du Pierreaux and killed some ten Indians, 
among whom was Kettle, the great Fox chief, f 

The Sauks and Foxes were coming up to a 
treaty unarmed, and the Sioux, made aware of 
this through their runners, got the Monomonees 
and laid in ambush on the east shore. The un 
suspecting Foxes were fired into from the am- 
buscade and their best warriors lost their 

After the fight the Monomonees and Sioux 
came up here to have a dance over the scalps. 
The Indians presented a horrid appearance. 
They were painted for war and had smeared 
themselves with blood and carried the fresh 
scalps on poles. Some had cut off a head and 
thrust a stick in the throttle and held it on high; 
some carried a hand, arm, leg or some other 
portion of a body, as trophies of their success. 
They commenced to dance near the mound over 
the slough, but Col. Taylor soon stopped that 

* Hichard B. Mason, a native of Virginia, was a 1st lieu- 
tenant in 1817, captain in 1819; served in the Ulack Hawlf 
War; major of drag:oons in 183J?, lieutenant-colonel in 1H3H 
and colonel in 1846. He commanded the forces in California 
and was e-x-othcio governor 1847-48; brevetted briM'fldier-gen- 
eral and died at Jefferson Barracks. Mo., July !I5, 1850. 

+ This was in 1830. 

by driving them across the main channel on to 
the islands, where they danced until their own 
scalps went to grace the wigwams of the Sauks 
and Foxes. 

In April of 1831, I was in the hospital at 
Fort Crawford, when, through the influence of 
Col. Taylor and Dr. Beaumont, I got my dis- 
charge. When I was convalescent, which 
was about June, a war party of Sauk and Fox 
Indians came up from their part of the country 
to the bluff north of Bloody Run, from where 
they watched the Monomonees, who were en- 
camped on an island opposite Prairie du Chien, 
a little north of the old fort. One night the 
Monomonee camp was surprised by the Fox and 
Sauk war party, and all in the camp killed ex- 
cept an Indian boy, who picked up a gun and 
shot a Fox brave through the heart and escaped. 
After massacreing, scalping and mutilating the 
bodies, the Fox Indians got into canoes and 
paddled down the river past the fort, singing 
their war song and boasting of their exploits- 
Soldiers were sent to punish them, but I believe 
they failed to catch them. In the morning I 
helped to bury those killed. There were 
twenty-seven bodies, all killed with the knife 
and tomahawk, except the Fox brave shot by 
the boy. They were buried in three graves on 
the landing below the present Fort Crawford, 
and until within a f^w years the spot was 
marked by a small muslin flag kept standing by 
the few Monomonees who lingered in this vicin- 
ity; but nothing is now left 'to preserve the graves 
from sacrilege, and soon the iron horse will 
course o'er the bones of those red men, 
long since gone to their happy hunting grounds. 

After the Monomonee massacre, a warrior of 
that tribe was found in the old Catholic grave- 
yard and buried. He had no wounds and it is 
thought that when the Foxes attacked the Indi- 
ans on the island, he got away and ran so fast 
that he had to lean against the wall to rest, and 
that he rolled over and died. 

The Indian agency was removed this year to 
Yellow River and the Rev. Mr. Lowrey ap- 



pointed agent. It was afterwards removed to 
Fori Atkinson, Iowa. The mission buildings 
can be seen now on Yellow river, about five 
miles from its mouth. 


The. Nation which displaced the Sacs and 
Foxes upon the Wisconsin river an4 its contig- 
uous territory, including what is now Vernon 
county, was the VVinnebagoes. It is now 250 
years since the civilized world began to get a 
knowledge of the Winnebagoes — the "men of 
the sea,'' as they were called, pointing, possibly, 
to their early emigration from the shores of the 
Me,xican gulf, or the Pacific. The territory 
now included within the limits of Wisconsin, 
and so much of the Stale of Michigan as lies 
north of Green bay. Lake Michigan, the Straits 
of Mackinaw and Lake Huron were, in early 
times, inhabiletl by several tribes of the Algon- 
quin race, forming a barrier to the Dakotas, or 
Sioux, who had advanced eastward to the Mis- 
si8»ii)i)i. lint the Winnebagoes, although one 
of liie tribes belonging to tlie family of the 
latter, had passed llie great river, at some un- 
known period, and settled ujion Winnebago 
lake. Here, as early as 1034, they were visited 
by Jiihn Xicolet, an agent of France, and a 
treaty concluded with them Little more was 
luard of the Winnebagoes for the next ihirty- 
tive year.s, when, on the 2d of December, 1669, 
some of that Nation were seen at a Sac village 
on Green bay, by Father Allouez. 

As early at least as 1670, the French were ac- 
tively engaged among the Winnebagoes trading. 
'■We found affairs," says one of the Jesuit mis- 
sionaries, wlio arrived among them in September 
of that year, "we found affairs there in a 
pretty bad poslure, and the mindsof the savages 
much soured against the French, who were 
there trading; ill treating them in deeds and 
words, pillaging and carrying away their mer- 
chandise in spite of tliem, and conducting 
themselves toward them with insupportable in- 
solences and indignities. The cause of this 
disorder," adds the missionary, "is that they 

had received some bad treatment from the 
FrcTich, to whoiii they had this year come to 
trade, and particularly from the soldiers, from 
whom they pretended to have received many 
wrongs and injuries. It is thus made certain 
that the arms of France were carried into the 
territory of the Winnebagoes over 200 years 

The Fox river of Green bay was found at 
that date a difficult stream to navigate. Two 
Jesuits who ascended the river in 1670, had 
"three or four leagues of rapids to contend 
with, when they had advanced one day's 
journey from the head of the bay, more diffi- 
cult than those which are common in other 
rivers, in this, that the flints, over which they 
had to walk with naked feet to drag their ca- 
noes, were so sharp and so cutting, that one 
has all the trouble in the world to hold one's 
self steady against the great rushing of the 
waters. At the falls they found an idol that 
the savages honored; never failing, in pass- 
ing, to make him some sacrifice of tobacco, or 
arr(;ws, or paintings, or other things, to thank 
him tliat, by his assistance, they had, in ascend- 
ing, avoided the dangers of the waterfalls 
which are in this stream; or else, if they had to 
ascend, to pray him to aid them in this perilous 
navigation. The missionaries caused the idol 
to be lifted up by the strength of the arm, 
and cast into the depths of the river, to appear 
no more, to the idolatrous savages." 

The Winnebagoes, by this time, had not only 
received considerable spiritual instruction from 
the Jesuit fathers, but had obtained quite an 
insight into the mysteries of trading and traffii- 
ing with wiiite men; for, following the fool- 
steps of the missionaries, and sometimes pre 
ceding them, were the ubiquitous French fur 
traders. It is impossible to determine precisely 
what territory was occupied by the Winneba- 
goes at this early date, farther than that they 
lived near the head of Green bay. 

A direct trade with the F>ench upon the St. 
Lawrence was not carried on by the Winneba- 



goes to any great extent until the beginning of the 
eighteentli century. As early as 1679, an advance 
party of LaSalle had collected a large store of 
furs at the mouth of Green bay, doubtless in a 
traffic with tliis tribe and others contiguous to 
them; generally, however, the sunounding Na- 
tions sold their peltries to the Ottawas, who 
disposed of them, in turn, to the French. The 
commencement of the eighteenth century found 
the Winnebagoes firmly in alliance with France, 
and in peace with the, dreaded Iroquois. In 
171S, the- Nation numbered 600. They had 
moved from the Fox river to Green bay. They 
were afterward found to have moved up Fox 
river, locating upon Winnebago lake, which lake 
was their ancient seat, and from which they had 
been driven either by fear or the prowess of 
more powerful tribes of the west and south- 
west. Their intercourse with the French was 
gradually extended and generally peaceful, 
though not always so, joining with them, as did 
the Menominees, in their wars with the Iro- 
quois, and subsequently in their conflicts with 
the English, which finally ended in 1760. 

When the British, in October, 1761, took pos- 
session of the French post, at the head of Green 
bay, the Winnebagoes were found to number 
150 warriors only; their nearest village being 
at the lower end of Winnebago lake. Tliey 
had in all not less than three towns. Their 
country, at this period, included, not only that 
lake, but all the streams flawing into it, espe- 
cially Fox river; afterward extended to the 
Wisconsin and Rock rivers. They readily 
changed their course of trade — asking now of 
the commandant at the fort for English traders 
to be sent among them. In the Indian outbreak 
under Pontiac, in 1 763, they joined with the Me- 
nomonees and other tribes to befriend the 
British garrison at the head of the bay, as- 
sisting in conducting them to a place of safety. 

They continued their friendship to the Eng- 
lish during the revolution, by joining with 
them against tlie colonies, and were active in 
the Indian war of 1790-4, taking part in the at- 

tack on Fort Recovery, upon the Maumee, in 
the present State of Ohio, in 1793. They fought 
also on the side of the British i:i the War of 
1812-15, aiding, in 1814, to reduce Prairie du 
Chien. They were then estimated at 4,500. 
When, in 1816, the government of the United 
States sent troops to take possession of the 
Green bay country, by establishing a garrison 
there, some trouble was anticipated from these 
Indians, who, at that date, had the reputation of 
being a bold and warlike tribe. A deputation 
from the Nation came down Fox river and re- 
monstrated with the American commandant at 
what was thought to be an intrusion. They 
were desirous of knowing why a fort was to be 
established so near them. The reply was that, 
although the troops were armed for war if nec- 
essary, their purpose was peace. Their response 
was an old one: "If your object is peace, you 
have too many men; if vvar, you have too few." 
However, tlie display of a number of cannon, 
which had not yet been mounted, satisfied the 
Winnebagoes that the Americans were masters 
of the situation and the deputation gave the 
garrison no further trouble. 

On the 3d of June, 1816, at St. Louis, the 
tribe made a treaty of peace and friendship 
with the general government; but they con- 
tinued to levy tribute on all white people who 
passed up Fox river. English annuities also 
kept up a bad feeling. At this time a portion 
of the tribe was living upon the Wisconsin 
river, away from the rest of the Nation, which 
was still seated upon the waters flowing into 
Green bay. In 1320 they had five villages on 
Winnebago lake and fourteen on Rock river. 
In 1825 the claim of the Winnebagoes was an 
extensive one, so far as territory was concerned. 
Its southeast boundary stretched away from the 
source of Rock river, to within forty miles of 
its mouth, in Illinois, where the}^ had a village. 
On the west it extended to the heads of the 
small streams flowing into the Mississippi. To 
the northward, it reached Black river and the 
Upper Wisconsin, in other words, to the Chip- 



pewa territory, including what is now Vernon 
county, but did not extend across Fox river, 
aliliougli they contended for tlie wliole of Win- 
nebago lake. In 1S29 a large part of their ter- 
ritory in southwest Wisconsin, lying between 
Sugar river and the Mississip])i, and extending 
to the Wisconsin river, was sold to the general 
govern men t. 

Just previous to this lime occurred the Win- 
nebago war, an account of which will be found 
in the next chapter. In \^3-2, all the residue of 
the Winnebago territory south and east of the 
Wisconsin and the Fox river of Green bay, was 
disposed of to the United States. 

Finally, in the brief language of the treaty 
between this tribe (which had become unsettled 
and wasteful) and the United States, of the 1st 
of November, 1837, "the Winnebago Nation of 
Indians" ceded to the general government "all 
their lands east of the Mississippi." Not an 
acre was reserved. And the Indians agreed 
that, within eight months from that date, they 
would move west of "the great river." 'i'his 
arrangement, however, was not carried out 
fully. In 1S42 there were only 756 at Turkey 
River, Iowa, their new home, with as many in 
Wisconsin, and smaller bands elsewliere. All 
had become lawless and roving. Some removed 
in 1S48; while a party to the number of over SOO 
left the State as late as 1873. The present 
home of the tribe is in Nebraska, where they 
have a reservation north of, and adjacent to the 
Omahas, containing over 100,00l> acres. How- 
ever, since their first removal beyond the Mis- 
sissippi, they have several times changed th.eir 
place of abode. The period of Winnebago oc- 
cupancy of Crawford county and the region of 
country contiguous thereto, properly began 
about the commencement of the present cen- 
tury and ended, virtually, in 1848. 

Within the last two years stejts have been 
taken toward paying such of the Winnebagoes, 
in Wisconsin, as might come forward to be en- 
rolled, at least a j)ortion of the money due to 
them tmder the act of Jan. 18,1881. It has 

been found by this enrollment that the whole 
number of Winnebagoes in Wisconsin at this 
time (1884) is about 1,'200; while those in Ne- 
braska number about 1,400; so that the entire 
Nation now consists of about 2,600 souls. 

Concerning the removal of the Winnebagoes, 
John H. Fonda says: 

During the year 1848, just previous to the 
adoption of the State Constitution, the Win- 
nebago Indians were scattered through the 
country along tlie Wisconsin and Fox rivers, 
through the Kiekapoo timbers, and the Lemon- 
weir valley. Orders came from the sub-Indian 
agent, J. E. Fletcher, to collect and remove 
them to their Reservation, near Fort Atkinson, 

In 1848, when orders were received at Fort 
Crawford to remove the Winnebagoes, several 
attempts were made to do so, but with jioor 
success. Early in the same year I received the 
following official letter: 

Office Sub-Indian Agent, ) 

Turkey River, Jan. 4, 1848. \ 

Sir: — In answer to your inquiry respecting 
the disposition to be made of the Winnebago 
Indians, who may be found wandering about 
through the country, I have to say that I wish 
you to arrest them, cause them to be securely 
guarded, and report them to me as early as may 
be practicable. 

Very respectfully your obd't servant, 
J. E. Fletcher, 

To Lieut. , Induin AgH. 

Commanding Ft. Crawford, W. T. 

Upon receipt of the above, I made all neces- 
sary preparation, and started with fifty men to 
collect the Indians. This attempt was quite 
successful, and several hundi'ed were arrested, 
and sent to Fort Atkinson, Iowa. It may ap- 
pear strange to some persons that such a hand- 
ful of men could take many hundred Indians 
prisoners, and guard them day and night as we 
traveled through a wild unsettled country; but 
it was done, and I have a list of names of those 
men who accompanied me on that expedition. 



My journal, kept during the time we were hunt- 
ing the Indians, presents numerous interesting 
items, only one or two of which, I will relate. 

In taking the Indians, great caution was 
necessary to enable us to approach them. When 
the scouts reported that Indians had been dis- 
covej'ed, four or Ave of the men would start on 
ahead, enter the Winnebago camp, collect all 
the guns and take off the locks before the Indians 
were aware of their intention. Frequently a 
hunting party would come in while the 
men were ?<?i-locking the guns, and make a 
demonstration of resistance, by which time 
our entire party would arrive, and prevail 
on them to submit to the same treatment, telling 
tiiem if they came along with us quietly, no harm 
would be offered them. On the 10th of May 
we encamped in a valley near the Baraboo, and 
three, days after were on Dell creek. Here the 
scouting party captured a Winnebago Indian, 
who told me his part of the tribe were encamped 
at Seven Mile creek. I sent eleven men to the 
camp, which was very large and comprised ii'any 
lodges. When the main body had come up to 
the Indian camp, we found the men had suc- 
ceeded in getting all the guns but one, which 
belonged to a young brave who refused to give 
it up. Fearing he might do mischief, the gun 
was taken from him. It was a fine rifle, of 
which he was proud; but in spite of his remon- 
strance, the lock was taken off, and put in a bag 
with others. When the piece was rendered un- 
servicable, they handed it back to the young 
Indian. He looked at it a moment, and then 
grasping the barrel he raised it above his head, 
and brought the stock down with such force 
against the trunk of a young sapling, as to break 
it to splinters, and threw the barrel many rods 
from him. His sister, an Indian girl about sev- 
enteen years old, picked up the barrel and handed 
it to him. The brother bent it against the tree 
and then hurled it over the bank into the creek. 

The addition of the Indians put us on short 
allowance, and I was obliged to send one of the 
wagons back to Baraboo for provisions and 

grain. Just before making camp on main ridge 
the 15th of May, my horse was bitten on the 
nose by a rattlesnake. The horse's head was 
soon swelled to twice its natural size, and I 
thought him as good as dead, when an old 
Frenchman offered to make the horse well by 
the next morning. I turned the horse over to 
his care, and sure enough, the morning follow- 
ing the swelling had all disappeared, and the 
horse was as well as ever. I asked what he had 
put on to effect the sudden cure, he said he did 
not apply anything, but one of the men told me 
that he cured the horse by looking at and talking 
to it. This was the same man who cured one, 
Theo. Warner, now [1858] living in Prairie du 
Chien, when he was bitten by a rattlesnake. 
His name was Limmery, and a strange man he 
was; his eyes were the smallest I haveeverseen 
in the head of any human being, with a piercing 
expression that once seen could never be forgot- 
ten. He would never allow a snake to be killed 
if he could help it, and could take up the most 
venomous snake with impunity. I saw him 
take up a large moccasin snake while we were 
in the Kickapoo bottoms, and it never offered to 
bite him, while it would strike fiercely at any 
third person who approached it. I could only 
attribute the strange power of this man to some 
mesmeric influence. 

We were fortunate enough to bring all the 
Indians to Prairie du Chien without accident, 
where they were delivered to a body of regulars 
from Fort Atkinson, who moved them to their 
Reservation. 'J'hat was the last of theWinne- 
bagoes in Wisconsin as a tribe. There are now 
a few stragglers loitering near their old hunt- 
ing grounds, in the Kickapoo and Wisconsin 
bottom lands, but altogether they do not exceed 
a hundred souls. 


In 1816 the Menomonees inhibited the coun- 
try about Green bay, and their women occasion- 
ally married Winnebagoes, but not often. The 
Menomonees were a quiet and peaceful race, 
well disposed and friendly to the whites. To- 



mah, the actingj chief of the Nation, was well 
spoken of by all the traders who knew him. 

The principal villages of the Winnebagoes 
were at the lower and upper end of the lake of 
that name, with an occasional lodge along the 
Fox river. At the season that traders generally 
passed the Portage of Wisconsin, they would 
find old grey headed Day-Kau-Ray at the 
Portage with his band. Their village was a 
short distance from there up the Wisconsin, 
and the Winnebagoes had villages up the Bara- 
boo river, and several small ones along down 
the Wisconsin to near its nioutii and up the 
Mississijipi. They were estimated at that time 
by the liaders best acquainted with them, to be 
about 900 warriors strong. Of tlie Day-Kau- 
Rays, tliere were four or five brothers, who 
were all influential men in the Nation. One 
sister had a family of cliildnMi by a trader 
named Lecuyer, who had married her after the 
Indian manner. Tradition says that their 
latlier was a French trader, who, during the 
lime the French hnil possession of tlie country, 
married a Winnebago woman, tlie daughter of 
tlie principal chii'f of the Nation, l)y whom he 
had these sons and daughter; that at the time 
the country was taken possession of by the 
English, he abandoned them, and they were 
raised among the Indians, and being the de- 
scendants of a chief on the mother's side, when 
arrived at manhood they assumed the dignity 
of their rank by inheritance. They were gen- 
erally good Indians, and fre(iuently urged their 
claims to the friendship of the whites by saying 
they were them'ielves half white. 


The locations cf the different tribes of Indi- 
ans in the vicinity of Crawford county, in 1818, 
including also the homes of the Winnebagoes, 
is clearly pointed out in the narrative of Ed- 
ward Tanner, published in the Detroit Gazette 
of January 8 and 15, 1819 : 

"The first tribe of Indians after leaving St. 
Louis is the Oyiwayes, (lowas). This tribe live 
about 100 miles from the west side of the Mis- 

sissippi, on the Menomonee, and have about 
400 warriors. The next tribe are the Sauks, 
who live on the Mississippi, and about 400 
miles above St. Louis. Tiiey emigrated from 
the Ouisconsin (Wisconsin) about thirty-five 
years ago. Their military strength is about ^00 
warriors, exclusive of old men and boys, and 
are divided into two divisions of 400 men. 
Each division is commanded by a war chief. 
The first are those who have been most distin- 
guished for deeds of valor, and the second the 
ordinary warriors. They have also two village 
chiefs who appear to preside over the civil 
concerns of the Nation. The next tribe is the 
Fox Indians. This tribe have a few lodges on 
the east side of the Mississippi near Fort Arm- 
strong and about four miles from the Sauk vil- 
lage. Thirty miles above this, at the mine De 
Buke (Dubuque), on the west side, they have 
another village, and another on Turkey river, 
thirty miles below Prairie du Chien. Their 
whole military strength is about 400 warriors. 
They are at this time in a state of war with the 
Sioux; and as tlie Sauks are in strict amity with 
the Fox Indians, and liave the influence and 
control of them, they are also drawn into the 
war. This war was in consequence of depreda- 
tions committed by the Fox Indians on the 

"Prairie du Chien, on which the village of 
that name stands, is a handsome plain, about 
half a mile wide from the bank of the river to 
the bluff or commencement of the rising ground, 
and out of danger from inundations. Inconse- 
quence of the serpentine course of the river, 
the plain widens above and below the village. 
The soil is a black sand about fifteen inclies 
deep, appearing to be very productive. The 
foundation is gravelly, containing amber stones 
susceptible of a handsome polish. Timber is 
scarce. The upland in the vicinity is very 
broken, poor and nearly barren. In the settle- 
ment are about 1,500 inhabitants, exclusive of 
the military, who are principally Creoles. As a 



place of business, it now appears on the de- 
cline. « 

"The river Ouisconsin (Wisconsin) is about 
half a mile wide — common deptli one to four 
feet — no falls, but generally a brisk current. 
The channel is subject to change, from the 
numerous bars of sand which lie in it, and fre- 
quently alter their position. In the river are 
numerous islands, on which grow the principal 
timber of the country. The banks are generally 
low and sandy — some plains lined with the com- 
mon granite stone. Tlie bordering country is 
very broken, sandy and barren. In llie interior 
the same description will answer. Barren, 
broken and destitute of vegetation, few places 
can be found that will admit of settlements. 
The Winnebago Indians inhabit the country 
bordering on the tributary streams of both sides 
of the river. They appear to go abroad for 
their game, and have no conveniences for 
dwelling, except a kind of lodge which tliey 
carry with them wherever they go. Their ter- 
ritory extends from the Mississippi to the vi- 
cinity of Green bay, and the number of their 
warriors is 700." 


From the commencement of the settlement 
upon the "Prairie des Chiens" until the final 
disappearance of the Winnebago Indians, as 
elsewhere described, Indian affairs in some way 
engrossed a large share of the attention of the 
pioneers. Important treaties were held here, 
notably in 1825 and 1829. For a number of 
years the Winnebagoes assembled here annual- 
ly, to receive their payments. One of the most 
tragical events of the Winnebago war occurred 
near here, as explained in another chapter ; 
and the closing incidents of that brief season of 
hostile acts were upon the "prairie." During 
the Black Hawk War, in 1832, Prairie du Chien 
was an important point of operations for the 
Americans, as is fully shown in another portion 
of this historv. 


Twelve treaties were held at different times 
between the United States and the Sac and Fox 
Indians and the Winnebagoes, affecting, im- 
mediately or remotely, the territory now in- 
cluded within the limits of Crawford county, as 
follows : 

1. A treaty was held at St. Louis, Nov. .3, 
1804, between the Sacs and Foxes and the 
United States. William Henry Harrison was 
acting commissioner on tiie part of the govern- 
ment. By the provisions of the treaty, the 
chiefs and head men of the united tribes ceded 
to the United States a large tract on both sides 
of the .Mississippi, extending on the east from 
tlie mouth of the Illinois to the head of that 
river, and thence to the Wisconsin, and inclu- 
ding on the west considerable portions of Iowa 
and Missouri, from the mouth of the Gasconade 
northward. In what is now the State of Wis- 
consin, this grant embraced the whole of the 
present counties of Grant and Lafayette and a 
large piortion of Iowa and Green counties. The 
lead region was included in this purchase. In 
consideration of this cession, the general gov- 
ernment agreed to protect the tribes in the quiet 
enjoyment of their land, against its own citi- 
zens and all others who should intrude on them. 
The tribes permitted a fort to be built on the 
upper side of the Wisconsin river near its 
mouth, and granted a tract of land two miles 
square adjoining the same. Tlie government 
agreed to give them an annuity of $1,000 per 
annum. The validity of this treaty was denied 
by one band of Sac Indians, and this cession of 
land became, twenty-eight years after, the 
alleged cause of the Black Hawk War. 

2. Another treaty was held at Portage des 
Sioux, now a village in St. Charles Co., Mo., on 
the Mississippi river, Sept. 13, 1815, with cer- 
tain chiefs of that portion of the Sac Nation 
then residing in Missouri, who, they said, were 
compelled since the commencement of the late 
war, to separate themselves from the rest of 



their Nation. They gave their assent to the 
treaty made at St. Louis in 1804, and prom- 
ised to remain separate from the Sacs of Rock 
river, and to give them no aid or assistance, 
until peace should be concluded between the 
United States and the Foxes of Rock river. 

3. On the 14th of September a treaty was 
made with tlip cliiefs of the Fox tribe, at the 
same ])'ace. They agreed that all prisoners in 
their hands should be delivered up to the gov- 
oinraent. They assented to, recognized, re-es- 
tablished and confirmed the treaty of 1804 to 
tlie full extent of their interest in the same. 

4. A treaty was held at St. Louis, May 13, 
18i6, with the Sacs of Rock river, who affirmed 
the treaty of 1804, and agreed to deliver up all 
the property stolen or plundered, and in failure 
to do so, to forfeit all title to their annuities. 
To this treaty Black Hawk's name appears with 
others. That chief afterward affirmed that 
though he himself had "touched the quill" to 
this treaty, he knew not what he was signing, 
and that he was therein deceived by the agent 
and others, who did not correctly explain the 
nature of the grant; and in reference to the 
treaty of St. Louis in 1 8U4, and at Portage des 
Sioux in 1815, he said he did not consider the 
same valid or binding on him or his tribe, inas- 
much as the terms of those treaties, territory 
was desorihi'd which the Indians never intended 
to sell, and tiie treaty of 1804, particiilarlj^ was 
m.ade by parties who had neither authority in 
the Nation nor power to dispose of its lands. 
Wliether this was a true statement of the case 
or otherwise, it is (luite certain that the grant 
of lands referred to was often eontirnied by his 
Nation, and was deemed conclusive and bind- 
ing by tlie government. The latter acted in 
good faith to the tribes, as well as to the 
settlers, in the disposition of the lands. 

5. A treaty of peace and friendship was 
made at St. Louis, June .3, 1816, between the 
ciiiefs and warriors of that part of the ^Vinne- 
bagiies rosiiling on the Wisconsin river. In 
this treaty the tribe state that they have sepa- 

rated themselves from the rest of their Nation; 
that they, for themselves and those they repre- 
sent, confirm to Vie United States all and every 
cession of land heretofore made by their Nation, 
and every contract and agreement, as far as 
their interest extended. 

6. On the 19th of August, 1825, at Prairie 
du Chien, a treaty was made with the Sioux, 
Chippewas, Sacs and Foxes, Winnebagoes, Ot- 
tawas and Pottawattamies, by which the 
boundary between the two first Nations was 
agreed upon; also between the Chippewas, 
Winnebagoes and other tribes. 

7. Another treaty was held Aug. 5, 1^26, 
at Fond du Lac of Lake Superior, a small settle- 
ment on the St. Louis river, in Itasca Co., Minn., 
with the same tribes, by which the previous 
treaty was confirmed in respect to boundaries, 
and those of the Chippewas was defined, as a 
portion of the same was not completed at the 
former treaty. 

8. A treaty was made and concluded Aug. 
1, 1827, at Butte des Morts, between the United 
States and the Chippewa, Menomonee and 
Winnebago tribes, in which the boundaries of 
their tribes were defined; no cession of lands 
was made. 

9. A treaty w'as made at Green Bay, Aug. 
25, 1828, with the Winnebagoes, Pottawattamies 
and other tribes. This treaty was made to re- 
move the difficulties which had arisen in con- 
sequence of the occupation by white men of 
that portion of the mining country in the south- 
western part of Wisconsin wliicii had not been 
ceded to the United States. A provisional 
boundary was provided, and privileges accorded 
the government to freely occupy their territory 
until a treaty should be made for the cession of 
the same. This treaty was simply to define the 
rights of the Indians, and to give the United 
States the right of occupation. 

10. Two treaties were made at Prairie du 
Chien on the 29th of July, 1829, and Aug. 1, 
1829. At the first date, with the Chippewas, 
Ottawas and Pottawattamies, by which these 



Nations ceded all tlieir lands which they claimed 
in the northwestern part of Illinois; and at the 
latter date with the Winnebagoes, by which 
that Nation ceded and relinquished all their 
right, title and claim to all their lands south of 
the Wisconsin river, thus confirming the pur- 
chase of the lead-mine region. Certain grants 
were made to individuals, which grants were 
not to be leased or sold by the grantees. 

By this important treaty, about 8,00C,000 
acres of land were added to the public domain. 
The three tracts ceded, and forming one whole, 
extended from the upper end of Rock river to 
the mouth of the Wisconsin, from latitnde 41 
degrees .30 minutes to latitude 43 degrees ] n 
minutes on the Mississippi Following the 
meanderings of the river, it was about 240 
miles from west to east, extending along the 
Wisconsin and Fox rivers, affording a passage 
across the country from the Mississippi to Lake 
Michigan. The south part of the purchase ex- 
tended from Rock Island to Lake Michigan. 

11. At the conclusion of the Black Hawk 
War, in 1832, for the purpose of clearing up the 
Indian title of the Winnebago Nation in the 
country, a treaty was made and concluded at 
Fort Armstrong, Sept. 15, 1832. All the terri- 
tory claimed by this Nation lying south and 
east of the Wisconsin and Fox rivers of Green 
bay, was ceded to the United States, and no 
band or party of Winnebagoes was allowed to 
reside, plant, fish or hunt on these grounds, 
after June 1, 1833, or on any part of the country 
tlierein ceded. 

12. The Winnebago Nation, by the chiefs 
and delegates, held a treaty with the govern- 
ment at Washington, Nov. 1, 1S37. Tliat 
Nation ceded all their lands east of the Missis- 
sippi, and obligated themselves to remove, 
within eight months after the ratification of the 
treaty, to certain lauds west of the Mississippi 

which were conveyed to them by the treaty 
of Sept. 21, 1832. 

[By Caleb Atwater.] 

On the day we delivered the goods to the 
Winnebagoes, after the Indians were all seated 
on the ground in rows, the chiefs on the highest 
spot in the center, on benches, clothed in the 
most sumptuous manner; where they could see 
and be seen to the best advantage; every tribe 
by itself; the half-breeds in one place, the full 
whites in another. As I passed through the 
open spaces between the ranks, my attention 
was forcibly drawn to a particular spot by a 
constant snarling, hissing noise of some miser- 
able human beintr, whom, on approaching 
I ascertained to be an Indian woman, shriveled, 
haggard and old, though remarkably neat in 
her person and dress. She appeared to be 
about sixty years of age, and scolded inces- 
santly. Some of the goods placed before her, as 
her share of them, she complained of as being 
too fine; others as being too coarse; some cost 
too much, while others were quite too cheap, 
and none of them seemed to please her. Wish- 
ing, if possible, to please all of them, and 
especially the ladies; actuated by tiie best of 
motives, I endeavored by every argument in my 
power to satisfy her, that so far as I could do 
anything towards it, great care had been taken 
in the distribution to do justice to every indi- 
vidual. I told her that her great father, the 
President, had specially ordered me, so far as 
in me lay, to please all, and to see that none 
went home dissatisfied. At that moment she 
returned upon me a volley of epithets too de- 
grading to be repeated, even though applied to 
myself, as I felt conscious of not deserving 
them. Turning around to some females who 
were politely sitting on the ground behind me 
I learned the fault finder teas an old maid, (un- 
married men at sixty years of age I will call 
bachelors, but ladies never), and that the only 
distinguishing mark of attention she had ever 



received from any man was a smart blow with 
a flat hand on lier right ear. 

As there is no law regulatingtaste, and some- 
times no rational way of accounting for some 
of its freaks; and as some sights are the aver- 
sion of some persons, while the appearance of 
other objects is equally disagreeable to others; 
and as I never could endure the ideas conveyed 
to raj- mind by a rattlesnake, a heartless politi- 
cioii, an iceberg and a cold-hearted woman, I 
turned away from lier in disgust, and never saw 
her more nor inquired her name, for fear I 
should remember it. She was the only person 
who left the treaty ground dissatisfied with the 
commissioners. To please her it was utterly 

Seated, as I said, upon rising ground on 
benches, clad in blankets, eitiier red or green; 
covered with handsome fur hats, with three 
l^eautiful ostriuii plumes in each hat; dressed 
in ruffled calico shirts, leggins and moccasins, 
all new, and faces painted to suit the fancy of 
each individual, who held in his hand a new 
ritie, adorned too, with silver brooches, silver 
clasps on every arm, and a large medal sus- 
pended on each breast; the chiefs, principal 
warriors and head men, to the number of forty- 
two, sat during the two hours after all the 
goods had been delivered to the Nation. 

Every individual of both sexes in the Nation 
had iyitig directly before the person on the 
ground the share of the goods belonging to the 
individual. Great pains had been taken to 
give each, such, and just so many clothes as 
would be suitable for the owner to wear during 
the year to come. The clothes were cut so as 
to correspond exactly with the sPze of the 
owner. The pile of clothes for each person 
was nearly two feet in thickness, the sight of 
which entirely overcame with joy our red 
friends, and tliey sat, during two hours, in the 
most profound silence, not taking off their eyes 
one moment from the goods, now their own. 
For ilie first time during my constant inter- 
course of several weeks with these interesting 

sons and daughters of the forest, as I passed re- 
peatedly through their ranks, not an eye ap- 
peared to see me, not an ear to hear my heavy 
tread, not a tongue, as always heretofore, re- 
peated the endearing name of "Oconee Kairake," 
(the good chief), which their kind partiality 
had given me on my first landing at Prairie 
du Chien. Their minds were entirely over- 
come with joy. 

The day being far spent, and, as the landing 
of the canoes, in which they were about to de- 
part, would necessarily occupy some little time, 
I informed the chiefs and principal men that 
the time had arrived when we should part to meet 
no more; that the great gun at the fort would 
soon be fired to do them honor. With one ac- 
cord they all arose, and shaking me heartily by 
the hand, many of them shedding tears on the 
occasion, they one and all invited me to visit 
them at their respective places of abode. In 
a shrill tone of voice Nankaw issued his orders 
for every individual to arise, take up his or her 
goods, and repair to the beach of the river near 
at hand, and there await the signal from the 
fort for their embark ition. 

In fifteen minutes they were all seated on the 
sands by the river's edge, where they all sat in 
breathless silence awaiting the signal, which 
was soon given. As soon as that was given 
each chief came forward, shook me again cor- 
dially by the hand, accompanied l)y the warm- 
est protestations of friendship. In a few mo- 
ments more they were off, covering a consider- 
able surface with their canoes, eacii one of 
which carried its flag of some sort floating in 
the gentle breeze, which ruffled the surface of 
the Mississippi. 

The Chippewas, Ottawas and Pottawatta- 
mies had received their goods in the same man- 
ner as the Winnebagoes; had been treated pre- 
cisely in the same way, and three guns, one for 
each Nation, had given them signal to depart, 
and they had parted with me Iti the same kind 
and affectionate manner. 



After the departure of the above named In- 
dians, we had the Sanks and Foxes still with 
us, with whom we had orders to hold a council 
to ascertain from them "if they would sell their 
mineral lands, situated west of the Mississippi?" 
— and if they would sell them, upon what 

Gen. M'Neil, who was in command as a mili- 
tary officer in this section of country, addressed 
these tribes and was answered by Keokuk on 
the part of the Sauks, and by Morgan for the 
Foxes. I regret that the injunction of secrecy 
rests on these speeches in the United States 
Senate; otherwise I should take great pleasure 
in laying them before the reader. Keokuk, in 
particular, made one of the best speeches I ever 
heard, and it was admired as such by several 
members of the Senate. Keokuk, on the part 
of these Indians, complained to us of certain 
white men who hid settled on the Indian lands 
along the Mississippi in order to supply per- 
sons navigating the river with necessaries, such 
as poultry, milk, butter, eggs, and above all, 
cordwood for the ste-imboats. He complained 
that the United States had cultivated lands as a 
garden for the garrison at Prairie du Chien — 
had erected a mill without leave, on Indian land 
— and had not fulfilled former treaties with 

Making them liberal presents, we naturally 
deferred the whole subject in discussion for the 
consideration of the government of the United 
States to act on it ; and I take pleasure in say- 
ing the government has, since that time, done 
its duty to these sons of the forest. 

After arranging all matters with them as well 
as we could, which occupied several days, they 
were dismissed in a very friendly manner, as 
all other Indians had been already, and they 
immediately descended the river for their 

Before leaving this place I wish to make a 
few remarks of a general nature. 

Though I neither am, nor ever pretended tj 
be a military man, yet I venture a few remarks 

on some of the military establishments in the 

The fort on Rock Island is commanded by 
hills on both sides of it, and could not stand an 
hour against an enemy with cannon posted on 
the heights. 

VVhy this fort was placed here where it is, no 
man of sense can tell, if the British were to be 
the attacking enemy. If this work was intended 
to protect this frontier against Indians it is 
in so dilapidated a state that by crossing on the 
island above the fort, or gliding along in their 
canoes under the western side of the island, 
which forms the outside of the fort, the Indians 
could in any dark night make themselves mas- 
ters of the garrison in fifteen minutes. When- 
ever they please they can collect at this point 
in ten days 4,000 warriors, to contend with 400 
soldiers. There is no regular mail connecting 
this post with the United States, and war might 
be declared for three months, in some seasons 
of the year, without the garrison's knowing it. 

There is a postoffice established here, and in 
summer the officers sometimes go to Galena for 
their papers and letters, 100 miles above them 
— and sometimes they go to Springfield, in the 
Sangarao country, a distance of seventy miles 
perhaps, for their letters. The officers must go 
themselves, as the soldiers, if permitted to go, 
would desert the service. Cut off from all the 
world, that is, the civilized world, during six 
months of the year, the officers and soldiers 
lead a life as dull as need be. The officers 
who have families have established a school for 
their children, which is doing very well. 

Ascending the Mississippi, 200 miles or more 
above Rock. Island, we arrive at Fort Crawford, 
at Prairie du Chien. This post like that at 
Rock Island, stands near the Mississippi on its 
eastern shore, and is entirely and completely 
commanded by the hills on each side of the 
river. It enjoys, too, a situation so low that 
nearly every summer, during the dog days, its 
site is under water from six to ten feet in depth, 
from the overflowing of the river. 



This work is in so dilapidated a state that I 
presume it is now abandoned for another site 
somewhat more elfcvattd but nearer the high 
hill that will forever command it, just east of 
it. Maj. Garland pointed out to me the spot 
where he supposed a nnw fort would be erected. 

There is a propriety in placing a military post 
somewhere, at or near the mout i of the Wis- 
consin, in order to form a line of posts situated 
on Green bay, where there is a fort- and in the 
interior, at the spot where Fort Winnebago is; 
but what consideration could have induced tlie 
government to place a garrison at St. Peters, 
300 miles and more beyond a single wliite set- 
tlement — unconnected, too, with any other post 
in the very heart of the Indian country, I am 
unable to determine. If this post was intended 
to strengthen tliis frontier, it certainly weakens 
it to the amount of the force stationed there 
added to an amount of force enough to succor 
and defend it. If the object was to station a 
garrison where an intercourse with the Indians, 
for the purposes of trade, was sought, Lake 
Pepin, far below it, is tlie place where it should 
have been located. As it is, it so happens often 
that the officers and others who pass and repass 
between Prairie du Ciucn and St. Peters are 
t.iken prisoners on the route by tiiu In<Iians. 
Unless some one wished to get a good govern- 
mental job by getting this post established, 
tlu'ii I cannot account for this strange location, 
and I am equally at a loss to account fur the 
continuance of this worse than useless establish- 
ment where it is. 

All the ofKcers in the Indian country, who 
have been there ten years, ought instantly to be 
relieved by others. Lieut. Col. Z. Taylor, has 
been in the Indian country constantly with his 
family, about twenty years. Here he and his 
lady, wlio were bred in the most polished and 
rofiued sot'iciy, have been compelled to rear, as 
well as they could, a worthy and most interest- 
ing family of children. Col. Taylor commands 
Fort Crawford, at Prairie du Chien. Dr. IJeau- 
mont and his amiable and accomplished lady; 

Maj. Garland and his, belonging to this garri- 
son, are doing tlie same. It is an interesting 
sight, to see such persons, located as they are, 
in a fort, on the very verge of civilized life, 
educating a family of young children. The sit- 
uation of delicate females, belonging to some 
of the best families in the Nation, reared in 
tenderness, amidst all the luxuries and refine- 
ments of polished society, now living in a fort, 
calls for our sympathy and admiration of their 
fortitude, which enables them to bear with all 
the ills, and overcome all the difficulties attend- 
ant on their mode of living. When i was very 
unwell, from exposure, miserable water, and the 
worst of cookery, and worn down too by fatigue 
of body and mental suffering, I always found 
sympathy, food that I could eat, and smiles 
and kindness wliicii touched my heart, in the 
families I have named, nor can I ever forget the 
females belonging to the families of Mr. Rolette 
and of Judge Lockwood, at Prairie du Chien. 
Without their kindness towards me, I must 
have perished. I do not deny my fondness for 
woman, because I know that in cases of distress 
and suffering, her sympathy and cheering voice, 
infuses into man new life, new vigor, and new 
fortitude, and he marches onward with redoub- 
led energy, to climb over every alps that is 
placed in his way. Living, as these ladies do, 
amidst dangers, in an Indian country, they are 
familiarized with them and their animating 
voice is worth an army of men. I never can 
forget them, nor their families while I live. 
Would the government hear my feeble voice, 
such officers would not be compelled, witli their 
families, to spend all their days, in an Indian 
country, while others who have known no suf- 
fering in the s rvice, are attending levees and 
gallanting about the ladies at Washington City. 

There is something wrong in all this, that I 
hope will be rectified yet. 

At each of the military posts, the officers liave 
established a library and a reading room, at 
their own expense. Their books consist of 
useful works, connected with their pursuits. 



History, geography, mathematics, chemistry 
and scientific books, are in the library, and tlie 
officers and their families are well read in them 
all. Though they may be uninformed as to the 
passing events, at the very moment they occur, 
yet, at unequal periods, their regular files of all 
the best newspapers published in the United 
States, are received and read with care. The 
Natirmal Intelligencer, National Gazette, all the 
literary periodicals, worth reading, are carefully 

The younger officers were all educated at 
West Point Academy, and whenever I met one 
of them, I always found a gentleman, and man 
of science, brave, active, vigorous, energetic, 
high minded, honorable, strictly honest and 
correct in all his deportment. He claimed all 
that belonged to him, and not one tittle more, 
of any one. These officers, belonging to the 
first families in the Nation, educated in the 
very best manner, are induced by their self re- 
spect, to conduct themselves in the very best 
manner on all occasions. They fear nothing 
but disgrace, originating in their own bad con- 
duct, and they scrupulously avoid it everywhere, 
and at all times. As officers, as gentlemen and 
as men, I feel proud of them as my countrymen. 

I pray them to accept tliis testimony in their 
favor, as a small payment towards a large sum, 
justly due to them for their good conduct in 
every part of the Union where I have had the 
pleasure of meeting with them. My only re- 
gret is, that this honest, heartfelt approbation 
of them is all I have it in my power to bestow 
upon persons so worthy. Those who are in 
actual service on the Indian frontier, deserve 
moie pay than they receive, in a country where 
everything is so e.\;travagantly dear. Congress 
ought to remember these worthy men, and make 
future provision for tiiem, and to Congress I 
submit their case. While those who shine in 
every fashionable circle at Washington, under 
the eye of Congress, are well paid for their ser- 
vices, it is to be hoped that others, who undergo 

nothing but hardships, will not be forgotten, as 
I know they will not be by the Senate. 

Having completed all our business of a public 
nature, so far as we could at this place, about 
the middle of August, as near as I now remem- 
ber, we concluded to give our friends here a 
ball on the evening preceding our leaving them. 
It was attended by all of the respectable part of 
the people in the garrison and in the village. 
It was a most interesting scene. Within the 
council house, where the civilized people were 
assembled, might be seen persons of both sexes, 
as polished and as refined in their manners, as 
well bred, and educated as well too, as any per- 
son in the United States; and at the same 
moment might be seen on the outside of the 
house, at the doors and windows, looking on 
and occasionally dancing by themselves, by way 
of experiment, or to show what they could do 
as dancers in the open air, as motley a group of 
creatures, (I can scarcely call them human be- 
ings) as the world ever beheld. They are a 
race peculiar to those parts of the upper Missis- 
sippi, where settlements were originally made 
by the French, soon after the conquest of 
Canada by the English, under Gen. Wolf. They 
are of a mixed breed, and |)robably moie mixed 
than any other human beings in the world; 
each one consisting of negro, Indian, French, 
English, American, Scotch, Irish and Spanisli 
blood; and I should rather suspect some of 
them to be a little touched with the prairie 
wolf. They may fairly claim the vices and 
faults of each and all the above named Nations 
and animals, without even one redeeming virtue. 

The reader will see that we were on the very 
confines of civilized and savage life. 

The officers and their families from Fort 

Crawford, and the best families in the Prairie, 

were all very happy, and we parted with them 

all in friendship, and retired to rest at about 

(By Schoolcraft.) 

We fina'ly left Mackinack for our destination 
on the Mississippi, on the 1st of Jaly. The 



convocation to which we were now proceeding, 
was for the purpose of settling internal dis- 
putes between the tribes, by fixing the bounda- 
ries to their respective territories, and thus lay- 
ing the foundation of a lasting peace on the 
frontiers. And it marks an era in the policy 
of our negotiations with the Indians, which is No such gathering of the tribes 
had ever before occurred, and its results have 
taken away the necesssity of any in future, so 
far as relates to the lines on the Mississippi. 

We encountered head winds, and met with 
some delay in passing through the straits into 
Lake Michigan, and after escaping an immi- 
nent hazard or being off into the open lake 
in a fog, reached Green Bay on the 4th. The 
journey up the Fox river, and its numerous 
portages, was resumed on the 14th, and after 
having ascended the river to its head, we 
crossed over the Fox and Wisconsin portage, 
and descending the latter with safety, reached 
Prairie du Cliien on the 21st, making the whole 
journey from Mackinackin twenty-one days. 

We found a very large number of various 
tribes assembled. Not only tlie village, but 
the entire banks of the river for miles above 
and below the town, and the island in the 
river, was covered with their tents. Tiie I)a- 
kolahs, with their high-pointed buffalo skin 
tents, above the town, and their decorations 
and implements of flags, feathers, skins and 
personal "braveries," presented the scene of 
Bedouin encampment. 

Wanila, the Yankton chief, had a most mag- 
nificent robe of the buffalo, curiously worked 
with dyed porcupine's quills and sweet grass, 
a kind of war flag, made of eagles' and vultures' 
large feathers, presented quite a martial air. 
War clubs and lances presented almost every 
iniaginabie device of paint, but by far the most 
elaborate thing was their pipes of red stone, 
curiously carved, and having flat wooden handles 
of some fpur feet in length, ornamented with 
the scalps of the red-headed woodpecker and 
male duck, and the tail feathers of birds artifi- 

cially attached by strings and quill work, so as 
to hang in the figure of a quadrant. But the 
most elaborately wrought part of the devices 
consisted of dyed porcupine quills, arranged 
as a kind of aboriginal mosaic. 

The Winnebagoes, who speak a cognate dia- 
lect of the Dacotah, were encamped near ; and 
resembled them in the style of lodges, arts and 
general decorations. 

The Chippewas presented the more usually 
known traits, manners and customs of the great 
Algonquin family — of whom they are indeed 
the best representatives. The tall and warlike 
bands from the sources of the Mississippi — 
from La Point, in Lake Superior — from the val- 
leys of the C'hi])pewa and St. Croix rivers, and 
the Rice lake reg on of Lac du Flambeau, and 
of Sault Sle. Marie, were well represented. 

The cognate tribe of the JFcnomonees, and 
Pottawattamies and Ottawas from Lake Michi- 
gan, assimilated and mingled with the C'hippe- 
was. Some of the Iroquois of Green Bay were 

But no tribes attracted as intense a degree of 
interest as the lowas, and the Sac and Foxes — 
tribes of radically diverse lang\iages, yet united 
in a league against the Sioux. These tribes 
were encamped on the island, or opposite coast. 
They came to the treaty ground, armed and 
dressed as a war party. They were all armed 
with spears, clubs, guns and knives. Many of 
the warriors had a long tuft of red horse hair 
tied at their elbows, and bore a necklace of 
grizzly bears' claws. Their head dress con- 
sisted of red-dyed horsehair, tied in such man- 
ner to the scalp lock as to present the shape of 
the decoration of a Roman lielmet. The rest 
of the head was completely shaved and painted. 
A long iron shod lance was carried in the hand. 
A species of baldric supported part of their 
arms. The azian, moccasin and leggins consti- 
tuted a part of their dress. Tliey were, indeed, 
nearly nude and painted. Often the print of 
a hand in white clay, marked the back or 
shoulders. They bore flags of feathers. 'J'hey 



beat drums. They uttered yells at definite 
points. They landed in compact ranks. They 
looked the very spirit of defiance. Their 
leader stood as a prince, majestic and frowning. 
The wild, native pride of man, in the savage 
state flushed by success in war, and confident 
in the strength of his^arm, was never so fully 
de])icted to my eyes, and the forest tribes of 
the continent may be challenged to have ever 
presented a spectacle of bold daring, and mar- 
tial prowess, equal to their landing. 

Their martial bearing, their high tone, and 
whole behavior during their stay in and out of 
council, was impressive, and demonstrated, in 
an eminent degree, to what a high pitch of 
physical and moral courage, bravery and suc- 
cess in war may lead a savage people. Keokuk, 
who led them, stood with his war lance, high 
crest of feathers, and daring eye, like another 
Coriolanus, and when he spoke in council, and 
at the same time shook his lance at his enemies, 
the Sioux, it was evident that he wanted but an 
opportunity to make their blood flow like 
water. Wapelo, and other chiefs backed him, 
and the whole array, with their shaved heads 
and high crest of red horse hair, told the s|)ec- 
tator plainly, that each of these men held his 
life in his hand, and was ready to spring to the 
work of slaughter at the cry of their chief. 

Gen. William Clark from St. Louis, was asso- 
ciated with Gen. Cass in this negotiation. The 
great object was to lay the foundation of a per- 
manent peace by establishing boundaries. Day 
after day was assigned to this, the agents 
laboring with the chiefs, and making themselves 
familar with Indian bark maps and diawings. 
The thing pleased the Indians. They clearly 
saw that it was a benevolent effort for their 
good, and showed a hearly mind to work in the 
attainment of the object. The United States 
asked for no cession. Many glowing harangues 
were made by the chiefs, which gave scope to 
thfir peculiar oratory, which is well worth the 
preserving. Mongazid, of Fond du Lac, Lake 
Superior, said: "When I heard the voice of 

my Great Father coming up the Mississippi 
valley calling me to this treaty, it seemed as a 
murmuring wind; I got up from my mat where 
I sat musing, and hastened to obey it. My 
pathway has been clear and bright. Truly it 
is a pleasant sky above our heads this day. 
There is not a cloud to darken it. I hear noth- 
ing but pleasant words The raven is not wait- 
ing for his prey. I hear no eagle cry, come let 
us go. The feast is ready — the Indian has 
.killed his brother." 

When nearly a whole month had been con- 
sumed in these negotiations, a treaty of limits 
was signed, which will long be remembered in 
the Indian reminiscences. This was on the 
19th of August, 1825, vide Indian Treaties p. 
.371. It was a pleasing sight to see the e.\i)lor- 
er of the Columbia, in 1S06, and the writer of 
the proclamation of the army that invaded 
Canada in 1812, uniting in a task boding so 
much good to the tribes whose passions and 
trespasses on each others lauds kept them per- 
petually at war. 

'Tis war alone that gluts the Iudiiin'» mind, 
As eating meats, inflames the tiger kind. 

At the close of the treaty, an experiment was 
made on the moral sense of the Indians, with 
regard to intoxicating liquors, which was evi- 
dently of too refined a char icter for their just 
appreciation. It had been said by the tribes 
that the true reason for the commissioners of 
the United States government sjieaking against 
the use of ardent spirits by the Indians, and 
refusing to give them, was not a sense of its 
bad effects, so much, as the fear of the ex- 
pense. To show them that the government was 
above such a petty principle, the commissioner 
had a long row of tin camp kettles, holding sev- 
eral gallons each, placed on the grass, from one 
end of the council house to the other, and then, 
after some suitable remarks, each kettle was 
spilled out ill their presence. Th^ thing was 
evidently ill relished by the Indians. They 
loved the whisky better than the joke. 



Impostor. — Among the books which I pur- 
chased for Gen. Cass, at New York, was the 
narrative of one John Dunn Hunter. I remember 
being introduced to the man, at one of my vis- 
its to New York, by Mf. Carter. He appeared 
to be one of those anomalous persons of easy 
good nature, without much energy or will, and 
little or no moral sense, who might be made a 
tool of It seems no one in New York was 
taken in by him, but having wandered over to 
London, the booksellers found him a good 
subject for a book, and some hack there, with 
considerable cleverness, made him a pack-horse 
for carrying a load of stuff about America's 
treatment of the Indians. It was called a 
"captivity," and he was made to play the part 
of an adventurer among the Indians, somewhat 
after the manner of John Tanner. Cass re- 
viewed the book on our route and at the Prairie 
for the North American, in an article which 
created quite a sensation, and will be remem- 
bered for its force and eloquence. He first 
read to me some of these glowing sentences 
while on the portages of the Fox. It was con- 
tinued, during the leisure hours of the confer- 
ences, and finally the critijue was finished, 
after his visiting the place and the person, in 
jMissouri, to which Hunter had alluded as his 
sponsor in baptism. The man denied all 
knowle(lge of him. Hunter was utterly demol- 
isliid, and his book shown to be as great a 
tissue of misrepresentation as that of Salmana- 
zar himself. 

August -2 1st the party seiiarates. I had de- 
termined to return to the Sault by way of Lake 
Superior, through Chippewa river. But, owing 
to the murder of Finley and his men at its 
mouth in 1824, I found it impossible to engage 
men at Prairie du Chien, to take that route. I 
determined, therefore, to go up the Wisconsin, 
and by the way of Green bay. For this pur- 
pose, I |)urchased a light canoe, engaged men 
to ])ad<lle it, and laiil in provisions and stores 
to last to Green Bay. Having done so, I em- 
barked about 3 o'clock p. M., descending the ma- 

jestic Mississippi, witli spirits enlivened by the 
liope of soon rejoining friends far away. At the 
same time, Mr. Holliday left for the same des- 
tination, in a separate canoe. On reaching the 
mouth of the Wisconsin, we entered that broad 
tributary, and found the current strong. We 
passed the point of rocks called Petit Gris, and 
encamped at Grand Gris. 

Several hours previous to leaving the Prairie, 
a friend handed me an enveloped packet, say- 
ing, "read it when you get to the mouth of tlie 
Wisconsin." I had no conception what it re- 
lated to, hut felt great anxiety to reach the 
j)lace mentioned. I then opened it, and read as 
follows: "I cannot separate from you without 
expressing my grateful acknowledgments for 
the honor you have done me, by connecting my 
name with your Narrative of Traveh in the Ceti- 
tral Portions of the Mississippi Valley, e^c." 
Nothing could have been more gratifying or un- 

22d. A fog in the valley detained us till 5 
o'clock A. M. After traveling about two hours, 
ilr. Ilolliday's canoe was crushed against a rock. 
While detained in repairing it, I ordered my 
cook to prepare breakfast. It was now 9 o'clock, 
when we again proceeded, till the heat of noon 
mul-h afl^ected the men. We pusl)ed our canoes 
under some overhanging trees, where we found 
fine clusters of ripe grapes. 

In going forward, we passed two canoes of 
Menomonees, going out on their fall hunt, on 
the Chippewa river. These people have no 
hunting grounds of their own, and are obliged 
to the courtesy of neighboring Nations for a 
subsistence. They are the most erratii- of all 
our tribes, and may be said to be almost no- 
madic. We had already jiassed the canoes, 
when >[r. Lewis, the portrait i>ainter, called 
out stoutly behind us, from an island in the 
river, "OhI ho!" I did not know hut there was 
some other breaking of the canoe, or worse dis- 
aster, and directed the men to put hack. "See, 
see," said he, "that fellow's imse I Dhl you 
ever see such a protuberance"'" It was one of 



the Menomonees from Sutte des Morts, with a 
globular irregular lump on the end of his nose, 
half as big as a man's fist. Lewis' artistic risi- 
bles were at their height, and he set to worlc to 
draw him. I could think of nothing appropri- 
ate, but Sterne and Strasbourg. 

23d. A heavy fog detained us at Caramanis 
village till near 6 a. m. The fog, however, still 
continued so thick as to conceal objects at 
twenty yards distance. We consequently went 
cautiously. Both this day and yesterday we 
have been constantly in sight of Indian canoes 
on their return from the treaty. Wooden 
canoes are exclusively used by the Winnebagoes. 
They are pushed along with poles. 

We passed a precipitous range of hills near 
Pine creek, on one of which is a cave, called by 
onr \>02i,ivaQn, L\l>ahleau Port. This supersti- 
tion of peopling dens and other dark ])laces 
with the "arch fiend," is common. If the "old 
serpent" has given any proofs to the French 
boatmen of his residence here, I shall only hope 
that he will confine himself to this river,and not 
go about troublingquiet folks in the land of 
the lakes. 

At Pine river we went inland about a mile to 
see an old mine, probably the remains of French 
enter|)rise, or French credulity. But all its 
golden ores had flown, probably frightened ofl^ 
by the old fellow of U'diable au Port. We saw 
only pits dug in the sand overgrown with trees. 

Near this spot in the river, we overtook 
Shingabowossin and his party of Chippewas. 
They had left the prairie on the same day that 
we did, but earlier. They had been in some 
dread of the Winnebagoes, and stopped on the 
island to wait for us. 

In passing the channel of Detour, we observed 
many thousand tons of white rock lying in the 
river, which had lately fallen from the bank, 
leaving a solid perpendicular precipice. This 
rock, banks and ruins is like all the Wisconsin 
valley rocks — a very white and tine sandstone. 

We passed five canoes of Menomonees, on 
their way to hunt on Chippewa river, to whom 

I presented some powder, lead and flour. They 
gave me a couple of fish, of the kind called 
pe-can-o by the Indians. 

24th. We were again detained by the fog 
till half past 5 a. m., and after a hard day's 
fatiguing toil, I encamped at 8 o'clock p. m., on 
a sandy island in the center of the Wisconsin. 
The water in the river is low, and spreads 
stragglingly over a wide surface. The very bed 
of the river is moving sand. V/hile supper was 
preparing I took from my trunk a towel, clean 
shirt and a cake of soap, and spent half an hour 
in bathing in the river upon the clean yellow 
sand. After this grateful refreshment, I sank 
sweetly to repose in my tent. 

2.5th. The fog dispersed earlier this morning 
than usual. We embarked a few minntes after 
4 A. M., and landed for breakfast at 10. The 
weather now was quite sultry, as indeed it has 
been during the greater part of every day since 
leaving Tipesage — i. «. the prairie. Our route 
this day carried us through the most picturesque 
and interesting part of the Wisconsin, called 
the Highlands or River Hills. Some of these 
hills are high, with precipitous faces towards 
the river. Others terminate in round, grassy 
knobs, with oaks dispersed about the sides. 
The name is supposed to have been taken from 
this feature. * Generally speaking, the country 
has a bald and barren aspect. Not a tree ha-i 
apparently been cut upon its banks, and not a 
village is seen to relieve the tedium of an unim- 
proved wilderness. The huts of an Indian 
locality seem "at random cast." I have already 
said these conical and angular hills present 
masses of white sandstone wherever they aie 
precipitous. The river itself is almost a 
moving mas.s of white and yellow sand, bro.nd, 
clear, shallow, and abounding in small woody 
islands and willowy sandbars. 

While making these notes I have been com- 
pelled to hold mv book, pencil and umbrella, 
the latter being indispensible to keep oft' the 

*Sin, the terminal syllable, is clearly from the Alyronquin— 
Os-9in. a stone. The French addetUhe letter o, which is the 
regular local form of the word, agreeably to the true Indian. 



almost tropical fervor of tlie sun's rays. As 
the umbrella and book must be held in one 
hand, you may judge that I have managed 
with some difficulty; and this will account to 
you for many nncouth letters and much dis- 
jointed orthography. Between the annoyance of 
insects, the heat of the sun, and the difficulties 
of the way, we had incessant employment. 

At 3 o'clock p. M. we put ashore for dinner 
in a very shaded and romantic spot. Poetic 
images were thick about us. We sat upon mats 
spread upon a narrow carpet of grass between 
the river and a high perpendicular cliff. The 
latter threw its broad shade far beyond us. This 
stri]) of land was not more than ten feet wide, 
and had any fragrants of rock fallen, they 
wou!<l have crushed us. But we saw no reason 
to fear such an event, nor did it at all take from 
the relish of our dinner. Green moss had 
covered the face of the rock and formed a soft 
velvet covering, against which we leaned. The 
broad and cool river ran at our feet. Overhang- 
ing trees formed a grateful Ixnver around us. 
Alas, how are those to be pitied who jirefei' 
palaces Iniilt with human hands to siicli seques- 
tered scenes. What perversity is lher(^ in tlif 
human understanding to quit the deiiglitful 
and peaceful abodes of nature, for noisy towns 
ami (lusty streets. • 

"To me more dear, congeni!U to my heart, iiiitive charm tliaii all the gloss of art. " 

At a late hour in theeveningwe reached the 
Wisconsin port.age, and found Dr. Wood, U. S. 
A., encamped there, lie had arrived a short 
time before us, with four Indians and one Cana- 
dian in a canoe, on his way to St. Peter's. He 
had a mail in his trunk, and I had reason to 
believe I should receive letters, but to my sore 
disapi)oinlment I found nothing. I invited Dr. 
Wood to supper, having some ducks and snipes 
to offer in addition to my usual stock of solids, 
such as ham, venison and buffalo tongues. 


Galena stands on the land we afterwards pur- 
chased of the Indians, and is the largest town in 

Illinois. When we arrived there it had been 
settled about three years. It contained several 
taverns, a considerable number of stores, about 
a dozen lawyers, and four or five physicians, with 
little to do, as the country is healthy. There 
were three religious congregations in the place 
— Methodists, Roman Catholics and Presbyte- 
rians. The town is built on the side hill, 
in the form of a crescent, on the north side 
of Fever river, and contains, perhaps, 1,000 
inhabitants. It is a seat of justice of Jo 
Daviess Co., 111., and is situated in latitude 
about 42 degrees, 30 minutes north. It con- 
tains at all times very large quantities of lead, 
brought here either as rent to the government, 
or for sale to the merchants. The superintend- 
ent of the mines and his assistant, Maj. Camp- 
bell, live here. The latter gentleman and his 
amiable and interesting lady had Ijeen with us 
on our passage from St Louis, and they were 
hapj)y to find themselves at the end of as dis- 
agreeable a journey as was ever made on these 

XuiTierous groceries appeared in the town, to 
us, and two billiard tables were occupied by 
persons who wished lo amuse themselves at 

Mr. .lames Barnes, formerly of Chillicothe, 
Ohio, kept an excellent boarding house, and 
I found many old acquaintances in the town, 
enjoying the best of health, and they appeared 
cheerful and happy. 

Here we learned that a largo body of Indians 
had already been assembled at Prairie du 
Chien, for some time, and were in readiness to 
meet us. Knowing the necessity of supplying 
them with food, that ours would not reach us 
for sometime yet, and knowing this to be the 
last opportunity we should find to purchase any 
food, we purchased 500 bushels of corn, and 
loading all we could convey, we left this beauti- 
ful town on the next day, and departed for our 
final destination, where we arrived about the 
middle of July, 1829. 



As soon as we were discovered by our red 
friends, a few miles below the fort, opposite to 
their encampment, they fired into the air about 
1,500 rifles, to honor us. Our powder had 
become wet, and, to our extreme mortification 
and regret, we could not answer them by our 
cannon. Having fired their arms, some ran on 
foot, some rode on their small horses furiously 
along over the prairie to meet us where we 
landed Amidst the motley g»oup of thousands, 
of all ages, sexes, classes of society, colors and 
conditions of men, women and children, who 
met us on the wharf — Nawkaw and Hoochope- 
kah, with their families, eagerly seized my 
hand, and I was happy, indeed, to meet them 
here. During twenty years I had seen them 
several times, and they recognized me in a 
moment, among the crowd, and assured me of 
their friendship and good wishes. These chiefs 
of the Winnebagoes and their families pressed 
around me, and continued close by me until we 
reached the tavern where we went. 'J'liere we 
entered into a long conversation, and they in- 
troduced me to their red friends. I assured 
them of my ardent friendship, and that they 
and their people should be dealt with, not only 
justly but liberally; that the President, their 
great father, was their friend, a warrior like 
them, and never would do them any injury; 
that I wished them all to remember what I 
now told them, and when we finally parted, if my 
solemn promises thus voluntarily made to them 
had not been kept to the very letter, I wished 
them to publicly tell me se. Shaking me 
heartily by the hand, and assuring me of their 
friendship, they then appealed to Col. Menard, 
who heartily agreed with me in assuring them of 
our good intentions towards them. 

Dr. Wolcott, the agent for the Chippewas, 
Ottawas and Pottawattamies, here met us, and 
he liad been at incredible pains to get his Indi- 
ans iiere, where they had been for nearly a 
month, perhaps. Mr. Kinzy, the sub-agent of 
the Winnebagoes, whose sub-agency is located 
at Fort Winnebago, had also come and witli 

him all the principal persons of that Nation, re- 
siding in that direction. 

All the Indians with whom we were sent to 
treat were represented on the ground, and all 
that was wanting to begin our councils we 
urged forward with all the energy that the 
officers of the government and their numerous 
friends could muster. The next day, in com- 
pany with Gen. Street, the agent of the Winne- 
bagoes, resident here, several sub-agents and in- 
terpreters, I met the principal men of the Win- 
nebagoes, and we impressed upon them the 
necessity of keeping their young men under 
subjection, and arranged with them the out- 
lines of the manner in which our business 
should be conducted. The talk was a long one 
and occupied the afternoon. Gen. Street was 
very zealous in the service of the government. 

Gen. McNeil and his officers at the fort 
erected a council shade near the fort and in 
about three days we were ready to hold a public 
council, when Dr. Wolcott's Indians informed 
me that they could not meet in public council 
until an Indian was buried, and inquired of me 
if I objected to the burial, to which I replied 
that I could not object to the burial, certainly. 
On the next day, to my regret, I learned thoy 
would not assemble in council until the Indinn 
was buried, and again inquired whether I was 
willing to have the person buried, to wliicli 
question I replied in the affirmative, when I was 
informed that the relatives of the deceased 
would not consent to the burial of the mur- 
dered person until they had received a horse, 
as the compensation for his death. Under- 
standing the difficulty at last, the commissioners 
gave the horse, the deceased was buried and tlie 
Indians agreed to meet in council next day. 

I took some pains to get the murderer and 
the relatives of the deceased together in order 
to have a perfect reconciliation between them. 
They shook hands very cordially in appearance, 
but the relatives of the deceased person in- 
formed nie jirivately afterwards tliat, as soon 
as tile murderer got home with liis horse and 



goods, they would kill him and take his prop- 
erty, whicli he could better keep than they 
could until then. If I am correctly informed 
they did as tliey assiired me they would 'after 
their arrival in their own country. So that 
compounding for the murderer only procrasti- 
nated for a time the punishment of the crime 

When everything was in readiness for the 
opening of the council, the Indians of all the 
tribes and Nations on the treaty ground 
attended, and requested to have translated to 
them, severally, wliat we said to each tribe, 
which being absented to on our part, the Win- 
nebagoes, the Chippewas, Oltawas, Potlawatta- 
mies, Sioux, Sauks, Foxes and Monomonees, 
half-breeds, the officers from the fort, the Indi- 
an agents, sub-agents, interpreters and a great 
concourse of strangers from every city in the 
Union; and even from Liverpool, London and 
Paris, were in attendance. The commissioners 
sat on a raised bench facing the Indian chiefs; 
on each side of them stood the officers of the 
army in full dress, while tiie soldier.s, in their 
best attire, appeared in lirigiit array on the 
sides of the council shade. The ladies belong- 
ing to the officers' families', and the best 
families in the Prairie, were seated directly be- 
liind the commissioners, where they conhl see 
all that passed and hear all that was sai<l. l>e- 
liinil the principal Indian chiefs sat the com- 
mon people — first the men, then the women and 
children, to the number of thousands, wlio list- 
ened in breathless and death-like silence to 
every word that was uttered. The spectacle 
was grand and morally sublime in the highest 
degree to the Nations of red men who were 
present, and when our proposition to sell all 
their country to their Father had been delivered 
to them, they requested an exact copy of it in 
writing; the request was instantly comi)lied 
with and the council broke up. The next d.iy 
we addressed the Winnebagoes, as we had the 
Chippewas, etc., the day before, and at their 
request gave them a copy of our speech. 

After counciling among themselves, the Chip- 
pewas, etc., answered favorably as to a sale, 
though they would do nothing yet until they 
had fixed on their terms. 

Tlie Winnebagoes appeared in council and 
delivered many speeclies to us. They de- 
manded the ^20,000 worth of goods. "Wipe 
out your debt," was their reply, "before you run 
in debt again to us." 

Our goods, owing to the low stage of the 
water, had not arrived yet, and tlie Indians 
feared we did not intend to fulfill Gov. Cass' 
agreement of the year before. When our goods 
did arrive and they saw them they then changed 
their tone a little; but in the meantime, great 
uneasiness existed, and I was often seriously 
advised by Nawkaw and other friends to go 
into the fort, as Gen. McNeil had done. Col. 
Menard's ill health had compelled him to leave 
the ground and go to Gen. Street's, five miles 
(the general calls it three) from the council 
house. Unless we left the ground, we were 
told by the Winnebagoes, that they "would 
use a little switch upon us." In plain Englisli, 
they would assassinate the whole of us out of 
the fort. Two hundred warriors under Keokuk 
and Morgan, of Sauks and Foxes, arrived and 
began their war dance for the United States, 
and they brought word that thirty steamboats 
with cannon and United Slates troops, and 400 
warriors of their own, were near at hand. The 
Winnebagoes were silenced by this intelligence, 
and by demonstrations, not misunderstood by 

When Keokuk arrived, he brought two de- 
serters from the garrison here, whom he had 
made prisoners on his way up the river. Quas- 
quawma and his son-in-law, Tia-ma, came with 
Keokuk. It was a season of great joy with 
me, who placed more reliance on these friendly 
warriors than on all our forces. Good as our 
officers were, our soldiers of the army were too 
dissipated and worthless to be relicil on one 
moment. Taking Keokuk aside and alone, I 
told him in plain English all I wanted of him, 


what I would do for him and what I expected 
from him and his good officers. He replied in 
good English: "I understand you sir, perfectly, 
and it shall all be done." It was all done faith- 
fully, and he turned the tide in our favor. 

The goods arrived and also our provisions; 
Col. Menard's and Gen. McNeil's health were 
restored and they appeared again at the council 
house and everything wore a new aspect. They 
approved of all I had done in their temporary 

On the 29th of July, 1829, we concluded our 
treaty with the Chippewas, Ottawas and Potta- 

On the 1st day of August a treaty was con- 
cluded with the VVinnebagoes. 

So the treaties were executed at last, and 
about 8,000,000 acres of land added to onr 
domain, purchased from tiie Indians. Taking 
the three tracts, ceded, and forming one whole, 
it extends from the upper end of Rock Island to 
the mouth of the Wisconsin; from latitude 41 
degrees, 30 minutes, to latitude 48 degrees, 15 
minutes, on the Mississippi. Following the 
meanderings of the river, it is called 210 miles 
from south to north. It extends along the 
Wisconsin and Fox rivers, from west to east, so 
as to give us a passage across the country from 
the Mississippi to Lake Michigan. The south 
part of the purchase extends from Rock Island 
to Lake Michigan south of the Wisconsin, the 
Indians now own only reservations where they 
live, which, as soon as the white people settle 
on all the ceded lands, will be sold to us, and 
the Indians will retire above the Wisconsin, or 
cross the Mississippi, where the bear, the beaver, 
the deer and the bison invite them. The United 
States now owns all the country on the east side 
of the Mississippi, from the Gulf of Mexico to 
the mouth of the Wisconsin. 

When I have crossed Rock river, after hav- 
ing passed over the interior of the ceded coun- 
try, I will describe it more particularly. 

It remains for me to make a few remarks 
upon the country along the Mississippi from 

Fort Edwards upward, and briefly describe 
Prairie du Chien. 

Ascending the Mississippi, the country ap- 
peared to rise up out of the river at Fort Ed- 
wards, and the hills assume a greater elevation 
still, at Du Buque's mine and tomb not far 
from Galena. From thence n[)wards, the bot- 
tom lands are narrow, the river turns towards 
the northwest and becomes very crooked, 
bounded by high hills. Cassville, thirty miles 
below Prairie du Chien, stands on a narrow 
bottom, where an opening into the mineral 
country, in the direction of Mineral Point, pre- 
sents itself. This easy passage down to the 
river has located a town here of a few houses, 
consisting of a tavern, a storehouse for the lead, 
belonging to the United States; and here a 
government sub-agent to collect and receive 
the government's share of lead resides, Maj. 

Opposite to the mouth of the Wisconsin 
stands Pike's hill, lofty and abrupt, and just 
above this place, on the eastern bank of the 
river, begins the low prairie ground on which 
Fort Crawford and the village of Prairie du 
Chien stand. The town begins to show itself 
three miles above the Wisconsin, and extends 
upwards about nine miles, where it ends. The 
river is full of islands, and when at its highest 
altitude in a freshet is three miles in width, 
from hill to hill. Originally settled by the 
French, it was once a place of some importance, 
as the remains of old cellars and chimneys 
show. That importance is no more, and proba- 
bly never will be again. Overflowed by high 
waters, and but little good land near it, with- 
out waterpower, I see little inducement to build 
up a town here. On the north side of the 
Wisconsin there is no land on which a town can 
be located near the Wisconsin, and the south 
side is preferable for it, where one will, one 
day, rise up. The town, though, is a seat of 
justice for a county of Michigan, and perhaps 
thirty families,besides those belonging to the 
garrison, reside here No Indians reside near 



here, and there is no sort of need of nor propri- 
ety in having an agency, etc., liere for the Win- 
nebagoes, because Fort Winnebago is the proper 
place for the agency. 

Gen. Street, the agent and near relative of 
Mr. Barry, the postmaster general, is the pres- 
ent agent, and his residence, I consider to be 
about five miles above the fort, though I am 
aware that Gen. Street's estimated distance is 
only three miles. 

The water found by digging in this prairie is 
not always good, and that in our well was the 
worst I ever tasted, operating upon the bowels 
like glauher salts, and I suffered excessively 
I'r-om using it. Even the food cooked in it af- 
fected ine seriously. 'I'lie well in tlie fort is 
betier and some persons obtain water from 
spiings in tlie river whtn it is low. The river 
covers all the town and where the fort is in 
liigh water. The .Mississippi rising late in the 
season, and subsiding in the summer solstice, 
this ])lace must be sickly in summer every year, 
when a freshet takes such a time to appear. In 
liS'29 there was no such rise in the river, of any 
amount, and the place was healthy. 

The only Indians living on this river below 
this place and near it, are the Sauks and Foxes. 
The principal town of the former, on the east 
side of the Mississippi, is situated on the nortli 
side of Rock river, near its mouth, and in sight 
of the Mississippi. Not many years ago this 
town contained, it is said, 4,000 or 5,000 inhabi- 
tants. They have sold all the country east of 
the river Mississipiji, and are withdrawing from 
it to a new town some ten miles west of the 
old town, and about the same distance from 
Rock Island. 

The priiu'itial town of the Foxe8*is on the 
l)riiik of the river near Du Buque's mine, and 
in sight of his tomb, which is erected on a high 
hill, where the cross on his grave "can be seen 
from the river to a considerable distance from 
it. Du i>u(jue was an Indian trader and lived 
and died here. 

The Fox town contains twenty wigwams or 
upwards, and I presume some 200 Indians. I 
saw but a few acres of poorly cultivated corn 
near the town, and the wigwams looked shabby 
enough. Morgan is the principal warrior of 
this village, as Keokuk is of the Rock river 

The Sauks and Foxes were so useful to us as 
auxiliaries, that I feel grateful to them and 
make a few remarks on their principal men who 
were with us. 

Keokuk, the princijtal warrior of the Sauks, 
is a shrewd, politic man, as well as a brave one, 
and he possesses great weight of character in 
their national councils. He is a high-minded, 
honorable man, and never begs of the whites. 

While ascending the Mississippi to join us, at 
the head of his brave troops, he met, arrested 
and brought along with him to Fort Crawford, 
two United States soldiers, who were deserting 
from the garrison when he met them. I in- 
formed him that for this act he was entitled to 
a bounty in money; to which he proudly re- 
plied, that he acted from motives of friendship 
towards the United states, and would accept no 
money for it. 

Morgan is the principal warrior of the Foxes, 
and resides at Du Buque's mine on the western 
bank of the Mississippi. Though less versatil- 
ity of talent belongs to him than Keokuk pos- 
sesses, yet he is a brave man and fond of war. 
More than a year before we were in this country, 
this Indian general had gone to the Sioux 
country and killed a woman and three children 
of that Nation, which act produced the war, 
then raging between the two Nations. This 
act has since been dreadfully avenged by a 
large party, on some twenty individuals of the 

Tiama, a principal civil chief of the same 
tribe, is an excellent man, and son-in-law of 
Quasquawma. '1 heir village is already noticed 
as being located on the west side of the river, 
opposite where we lay on an island, at the head 
of the lower rapids. 



Quasquawma was the chief of this tribe once, 
but being cheated out of the mineral country, 
as the Indians allege, he was degraded from 
his rank and his son-in-law, Tiama, elected in 
his stead. The improvisatori, whose name has 
escaped my recollection, is a shrewd wit and a 
very good man, certainly a very amiable and 
agreeable one. He is highly esteemed by all 
his people. 

Tom, a half-blood, is a great pet among the 
whites. He speaks prairie-wolf French and a 
little English, in addition to his knowledge of 
Indian languages. 

Of the above named individuals, and several 
others belonging to these brave and generous 
allies, I brought away with me as correct a 
likeness as I ever saw drawn. Gratitude 
towards them was my motive for being at the 
expense of these beautiful paintings which have 
gone to London a year since. Like many other 
expenses I was necessarily put to, I have never 
received even one cent from the government 
towards them, nor have I received one cent, 
either for my expenses or my services at St. 
Louis, the lower rapids. Rock Island or Galena. 
I say this because it has been stated very 
differently, even on the floor of the House of 
Representatives. It is not. true that all my 
expenses were paid by the United States ; nor 
is it true that my services liave been paid for 
by the government at all. In saying this, I do 
it in justice to myself as I would to do justice 
to any other injured individual, however hum- 
ble in the Nation. I am even yet unpaid, but I 
never will condescend to beg for my pay at 
the doors of Congress. I did once expect very 
different treatment from my countrv- 


In 1846 the citizens living contiguous to the 
Wisconsin river were treated to a genuine In- 
dian scare, and as the Winnebagoes were the 
supposed enemies, an account in this history is 
properly given of the event. 

In the winter of 1844-5, and while the Legis- 
lature of the State was in session at Madison, the 

capital, a rumor that an Indian war had broken 
out,came to the ears of the legislators with a thou- 
sand fearful forebodings, and producing intense 
excitement. At this time the militia laws had 
all been repealed, probably with a view to coun- 
teract the supposed influence of Gov. Doty, 
and the c pital he might have made by the or- 
ganization of the militia, and the appointment 
of the officers from among his friends, the ma- 
jority of the Legislature being opposed to Doty. 
At this juncture, however, a change in the 
administration of the general government had 
changed governors, and Gen. Dodge was again 
at the helm of the territory. But the law 
which abolished the militia service with a view 
to hamper and trammel Doty, was now, in a 
time of need, found to trammel and hamper 
Dodge, for though great fear was excited, that 
plunder and murder would be, or were actually 
being committed by the Indians, the governor's 
hands were tied By the law, which he had him- 
self approved. The representations of the 
Indian disturbances made to the governor he 
communicated to the Assembly. 

The emergency of the case was such as to 
call the two Houses together at an evening ses- 
sion, to receive the governor's message on the 
subject, and to devise ways and means for the 
public defense. And while one was looking at 
another, at a loss to know what to do, a mem- 
ber penned and offered a bill to repeal the act 
by which the militia organization had been abol- 
ished, and to restore the former laws upon the 
subject. In offering the bill which contained 
only a few lines, he moved a suspension of the 
rules, so that the bill passed at once, and was 
sent to the council; and by the same process, it 
was passed there, and in about half an hour 
from the time it was first offered, the governor 
had approved of it, and the whole militia of the 
territory was organized, officers and all, 
and measures were taken to call out a 
portion of it, to chastise the supposed maraud- 
ers, when a second communication to the gov- 
ernor showed that there was no occasion for it. 



The first report bad grown out of exaggerated 
sta'ements of some wliite hunters, who had 
come in contact with some Indians in tht same 
pursuit, and who probably took some game 
which the whites would have been glad to have 
taken ; and possibly some pigs had been taken 
on the credit of the Indians, but this was. never 
proven against them. 

By reference to the Legislative journals, it 
appears that this matter happened on the last 
evening, Feb. 3, 1846. Tlie governor com- 
municated the proceedings of a meeting of the 
citizens of Muscoda, on the Wisconsin river, in 
Grant county, dated Sunday night, Feb. 1, 1846, 
stating as follows : "The citizens of this prairie 
and surrounding country, having been for the 
last several months annoyed and harrassed 
by the depredations of the Winnebago Indians, 
and submitted to tlieir bullying and insults, 
have at length been forced to the dernier re- 
sort ; to take up arms for our protection. This 
evening a skirmish took plac J between the In- 
dians and the citizens, in which four of the 
former were severely, if not mortally wounded; 
and from the known character of the Indians, 
we may naturally e.xpcct more serious conse- 
quences to ensue. A true and correct state- 
ment of the occurrences of the day is substan- 
tially as follows : A number of the Indians 
came down the north side of the Wisconsin 
river to Capt. Smith's, and stole his canoe. He 
discovered them and called to them to bring it 
back, which they refused to do. The captain, 
with several other men, came over to this shore, 
found the Indians who look his boat, and chas- 
tised one or two of them with a stick, and in 
the Thelee one of his men was severely hurt 
witli a club in the hands of one of the Indians. 
The Indians then ran, and the citizens, a num- 
ber of whom had by this time collected, followed 
them a little way and returned. In a short 
time the Indians came back also. All the 
citizens having by this time assembled, Capt. 
ffanies B. Estes and Booth advanced towards 
them, unarmed, and in a peaceable manner. 

making friendly manifestations, all of which 
time the Indians threatened, by drawing tlieir 
knives, throwing off their blankets, waving 
their guns in the air, and pointing them toward 
the whites. Finding it impossible to ]>acify or 
appease them they separated, and in a moment 
they fired upon the citizens ; the next minute 
their fire was returned, and four of them fell." 
They then add, that the Indians have sent their 
runners to collect their scattered bands, and the 
whites have sent for aid ; that they want the 
governor's assistance, and are determined to 
kill or drive every Indian en the Wisconsin 
over the Mississippi ; have upwards of fortj 
men under arms, and have chosen James \i. 
Estes for captain. 

Gov. Dodge recommended the adoption of a 
memorial to the secretary of war, asking for a 
corps of dragoons to protect the frontier settle- 
ments. "In the course of half an hour," says 
the Madison Aryus of that period, "resolutions 
were adopted to that effect, and the militia law 
of the territory revived ;" and on the adjourn- 
ment of the Legislature, the governor set out 
immediately for the scene of disturbance, but 
the excitement had died away and no more 
trouble was apprehended. 

tlJy .\ If red Brunson.) 

At what period the Chippewas began to oc- 
cupy that portion of the country south of Lake 
Superior, and within the ancient limits of 
Crawford county, it is difKcult to ascertain. 
Their first council fire within these limits was 
kindled on the Island of Magdalene, now. La 
Pointe — but when, neither history or their 
traditions definitely inform us. Whenever it 
was, the Sioux occuj)ied the main land, and I 
was shown points and places on the island, as 
well as on the main land, where the severest of 
battles were fought between these warlike tribes. 
From the best dale I have the Chippewas were 
on this island in 1722; for about that time a 
trading post existed there, and how long pre- 
viously is not determined. In 1665, the mis- 



sionary, Claude Allonez reached Kenenana, and 
interposed his influence in pieventing a party of 
young warriors from going against the Sioux; 
from which it would appear that Kenewana 
was then the western limi^of tlie Chippewas, 
on the south shore of that lake.* 

After the Chippewas had gained a foothold 
upon the Magdalene Island, their lirst move 
"inland" was towards the head branches of the 
Chippewa, and resulted in planting a colony at 
Lake Flambeau. As early as 1659, the Chip- 
pewas were near Green bay, and west and north- 
west of it to the Wisconsin and Lake Superior, 
from which the Flambeau colony probably re- 
ceived accessions, and by degrees they extended 
their conquest down the Chippewa, until the 
the battle field between them and the Sioux was 
between the falls of Chippewa and Lake Pe])in. 

In the meantime this warlike and conquering 
people extended their excursions to the head of 
the lake, and up the St. Louis river; and pass- 
ing the falls by a nine mile portage, they con- 
tinued to ascend that river, and the Savannah 
branch of it, — and by afiye mile poitage reached 
the waters of Sandy Lake, on the Mississippi, 
where they planted a colony, and this region 
became the battle ground lietween them and 
the Sioux in that direction until the line was 
pushed down the river to the Sauk rapids. In 
1825, when General Cass, as governor of Michi- 
gan and superintendent of Indian affairs, had a 
general congress of Indian Nations at Prairie du 
Chien, to settle the boundaries of their respec- 
tive lands, a dispute arose between the Sioux 
and Chippewas, as to the line between them. 
The latter claimed to the St. Peter and the Mis- 
sissippi rivers, while the former claimed to Lake 
Superior, and averred that their fathers had al- 
ways occupied and owned the country to that 

General Cass inquired of the Chippewas, "on 

what ground they claimed the country, the 

Sioux having occupied it before the Chi]ipewas 

came to it." Upon this Hole-in-the-day, then 

♦Bancrofts page 150. 

but a young man, rose and said, "We claim it 
on the same ground that you claim this country 
from the King of England — by conquest." 
"Then," said Governor Cass, "you are entitled 
to it." One of the most sanguine battles fought 
between these tribes was at the mouth of the 
Crow Wing river, as near as I conld learn, from 
Indian tradition, about the year 1768. The 
battle lasted four days between seventy Chip- 
pewas and 400 Sioux, the most of the latter being 
killed. In 1843 the remains of the fortifica- 
tions, such as holes dug in the ground, and 
breast works thrown up by the Chippewas, were 
plainly visible; and the affair was explained to 
me by William Aitkin, Esq. 

The next Indian occupants of a portion of 
the soil in this original country, seem to 
have been the Sacs, (Sauks or Saukies) and the 
Foxes, the latter called Ottigaumies by Carver. 
At what time they commenced their occupation 
is uncertain. In 1673, and for some time be- 
fore, they lived on Fox river, uQt far from 
Green bay. But in 1766, Carver found the 
Sauks at Sauk Prairie, and the Foxes at Prairie 
du Chien. And, according to his account of the 
time of building their village — it being thirty 
years previous to his reaching the place — it must 
have been as early as 17-"6, and perhaps earlier. 
These confederated tribes, who had been like 
Ishmael, their hands against everybody, and, of 
course, in self defence, everybody's hand 
against them, were driven from the St. Law- 
rence step by step, until they weie reduced in 
numbers, and compelled to unite their frag- 
ments of bands for mutual defence and self- 
protection, and settle on Fox river, fifty miles 
from Green bay, where in 1706, they were de- 
feated by the French and some allied Indians, 
who killed and took most of them' prisoners.* 
It is probable that soon after this event they 
moved over upon the Wisconsin river, and 
wrested the country from the Sicux, with whum 
and the Chippewas they kept a continual "war, 
until, as Black Hawk says, in his life by Le 

♦Carver's Travels, p45. 



Clerc, they discovered the beautiful country on 
Rock river, the occupants of which were weak 
and unable to defend themselves. Of this coun- 
try they took possession, driving off the former 
occupants This being tlie way this banded 
confederated tribe got possession of the coun- 
tries they occupied, we can have the less pity 
for them, even if their sorrowful story of frauds 
practiced upon them by the whites were true. 

Somewhere between lV06 and 1786, they must 
have moved to the Wisconsin; and they were 
there as late as ITOO, asl was informed by 
Mitchael Cadotte, who showed me mounds with 
holes in them for breast works, about five miles 
north of the falls of Chippewa river, wliich were 
made by the Sacs and Foxes when warring 
against the Cliippewas. The chief of the Foxes, 
who was first found by the whites at Prairie du 
Chien, was named Dog; and the prairie upon 
which he built his town, was called his, or Dog's 

After the Sauks and Foxes left the Wiscon- 
sin and the country north of it, and took up 
their abode on Rock river and west of the Mis- 
sissippi, the Winnebagoes moved from the 
vicinity of the lake of their name, to the coun- 
try vacated by the former; at what date is un- 
certain. But as the Sauks and Foxes were here 
in 1790, and not here in 1S05 when Lieut. 
Pike ascended the river, the VVinnebagoes came 
here prol)ably about ihe beginning of the pres- 
ent century. At this ])eriod the Sioux, Chij)- 
pewas and Winnebagoes, were the occupants of 
the soil as limiting grounds. The Menomonees 
claiming a part of the country west of the Wis- 
consin, and above the Portage. In 18-25 the 
the nirtes and bounds of these respective claim- 
ants were settled, in a general council of all the 
trihcs within reach; and continued so tintil 1837, 
when the Sioux and \\ iiinebagoes sold out to 
the United States a' I of llieir claims east of the 
Mississippi, and the Chippewas sold all they 
claimed to it, south of 46 deg. north latitude. 
And «iiliin ten years the Chipiiewas and 
Menomonees have sold out the remainder of 

their claims, so that the Indian title to the 
soil is now fully extinguished. 


The fur traders and missionaries were at- 
tracted to this distant quarter by nothing save 
the Indian settlements. There was at first no 
habitation of the red men at Prairie du Chien 
or in that immediate neighborhood. The Foxes, 
the Miamis, Kickapoos and Mascouting were 
confederate tribes, seated east of the portage 
of the Wisconsin. The Sioux and Iowa tribes, 
somewhat similarly allied, were above and 
across tlie great river. Between the.<e two 
confederations there was a continual warfare, 
which kept a large district of country between 
them unoccupied and uninhabitable. It was a 
war party of Sioux, in pursuit of the Miamis, that 
took Hennepin prisoner. Perrot, in 16^5, with 
difficulty prevented the capture of his post near 
Lake Pepin by an expedition of Foxes and tiieir 
allies, who designed turning his ammunition 
against their hereditary enemies. The journal 
of Le Sueur gives further incidents of asiinilar 

The region about the mouth of the Wiscon- 
sin was notoriously infested by predatory l)ands 
and warlike expeditions from one side or the 
other. The efforts of the French to establish a 
trade with the Sioux were met at first by re- 
monstrances from the Foxes, because their 
sanguinary enemies were thus supplied with 
fire arms and ammunition. Being unheeded, 
they determined to close the road to tiie Mis- 
sissippi by way of the Wisconsin, which lay 
through their country, and visit vengeance upon 
all who attempted to pass that way. This was 
so far effectual, as early as 1699, that none ven- 
tured to take that route if they could avoi<l it. 
Tiie French endeavored to chastise and bring 
these troublesome people to terms, and a long 
period of bloody opposition followed. Laper- 
riere's expedition made its wa\' to the Missis- 
sippi during a lull in tlic hostilities; their re- 
vival caused the abandonment of the enterprise, 
as already stated. Finally, the greater portion 



of the Fox tribe, if not all, withdrew from the 
river, which bears their name, and established 
themselves in the valley of the Wisconsin, 
about its mouth, somewhere near 1750. 

Thus, instead of being attracted to the shores 
in this derelict region, the voyageurs a,nd traders 
avoided them as much as possible, whenever 
they traveled the dangerous route. The li- 
censed traders were attached to the interests 
of the government and made instruments 
of extending its territorial jurisdiction by 
being given a sort of quasi military com- 
mand over their employes, and at places con- 
venient for their traffic, erected block houses or 
stockades, which they held in the name of the 
king, at their own expense. These were the 
only posts or garrisons ever established by the 
French west of Green bay. There was no in- 
ducement whatever for such a post in the vi- 
cinity of the Prairie. The reference in Perrot's 
official minute indited at Green bay, in 1689, 
to the trader, De Borie Guillot, as commanding 
the French in the neighborhood of the Wiscon- 
sin on the Mississippi, has been assumed as 
evidence of the existence at that time of a post 
at Prairie du Chien. With reference to this 
assumption, it is only necessary to remark that 
the lowas were the only Indians seated in the 
neighborliood, and they were upon the oppo- 
site side of the Mississippi, about Yellow river. 
If that trader had any established post, whichjs 
altogether improbable, it is neither designated 
by name or locality, nor referred to in any 

At the beginning of the war between France 
and Great Britain, in 1754, the former made 

*In a subsequent chapter, the question as to whether 
there was ever a French tort at Prairie du Chien, is fully 

peace with the Foxes, some of whom subse- 
quently enlisted under their banner. This re- 
conciliation and the establishment of that tribe 
at tlie mouth of the Wisconsin, by opening the 
way for the traders, made an entire change in 
affairs. Tlie place is now heard of for the first 
time, as the seat of a village of the Foxes, 
known among the traders by a name derived 
from that of their principal chief, Alim, or in 
the French language, Cliien, the dog ; hence. 
La Prairie les Chiens, signifying the Prairie of 
the Dogs, which has been modified to its pres- 
ent form, Prairie du Chien. There was no 
effort, however, to extend the authority of 
France in this direction; its attention was with- 
drawn and its energies concentrated to retain 
possession of Canada, and with the surrender 
of that province to the British, in 1760, all its 
claims upon the northwest, as far as the Mis- 
sissippi, were totally abandoned. 

In 1781 the Foxes sold the prairie at the 
mouth of the Wisconsin to some Canadian- 
French traders, and subsequently vacated their 
village, but at what precise date cannot be de- 
termined. Their withdrawal, doubtless, oc- 
curred within a few years in the course of the 
general migration of that Nation, by whicii its 
occupancy of the region upon the north side of 
the Wisconsin was abandoned, and its southern 
borders extended to Rock Island. It should be 
remarked, however, that their bands frequented 
the place as long as it continued to be a place 
of resort for the neighboring Indian tribes for 
purposes of trade. The country abandoned by 
them was soon occupied by the Winnebagoes, 
from Chippewa river to the Wisconsin, except 
that they laid no claim to the prairie. 





The territory now included within the limits 
of Crawford county, was first visited along its 
southern border in )6'13 by Frenchmen, from tlie 
river St. Lawrence, in Canada. The first to 
approach this region of country was John Nico- 
let, in 1634, who came no nearer than to the 
village of the Mascoutins, on Fox river, supposed 
to have been located somewhere on that stream 
within the present boundaries of Green Lake 
Co., Wis. A Jesuit missionary, in 1670, also 
visited the Mascoutins. His name was Claude 
Allouez; but he came no nearer what is now 
Crawford county, than did Nicolet, in 16.34. 


In 1 673, Louis Joliet, accompanied by a mis- 
sionary, James Marquette, and five other French- 
men, ascended the Fox river to the portage, now 
Portage, Columbia Co., Wis.; crossed over to 
the Wisconsin river and dropped down that 
river to its mouth. Thence, Joliet journeyed 
down the Mississippi. 

In the month of June, 167.3, two frail birch- 
bark canoes glided down the current of the 
Wisconsin river. It was the first time the rip- 
ples on its broad bosom were stirred by the oar 
of a white man. The canoes bore Louis Joliet 
and Father James Marquette with five attend- 
ants in quest of the great river toward the west, 
of which the French on the u])per lakes had 
heard from the Indians. On the seventeenth of 
the month (corresponding to the twenty-eighth, 
new style), their eager eyes beheld the Missis- 
sippi. They entered its current, as the mission- 
ary relates, turned their canoes into its channel, 
and with joy inexpressible, let their canoes gent- 

ly glide with the water, while they sounded its 
depths. They observed, attentively, the pecu- 
liarities of the majestic river and the surround- 
ing scenery as they proceeded on their voyage. 
Marquette's account is silent respecting the 
vicinity of Prairie du Chien, doubtless because 
everything in that direction was hidden from 
observation by a belt of woodland thaUformerly 
skirted the Wisconsin. 

He says: 

"We knew that there was, three leagues from 
Maskoutins, a river emptying into the Missis- 
sippi; we knew too, that the point of the compass 
we were to hold to reach it, was the west-south- 
west; but the way is so cut up by marshes and 
little lakes, that it is easy to go astray, especial- 
ly as the river leading: to it is so covered with 
wild oats, that you can hardly discover the 
channel. Hence, we had good need of our two 
guides, who led us safely to a portage of 2,700 
paces, and helped us to transport our canoes to 
enter this river, after which they returned, 
leaving us alone in an unknown country in the 
hands of Providence. 

"We now leave the waters which flow to Que- 
bec, a distance of 400 or 500 leagues, to follow 
those which will henceforth lead us into strange 
lands. Before embarking, we all began to- 
gether a new devotion to tlie Blessed Virgin 
Immaculate, which we practiced every day, ad- 
dressing her particular prayers to put under her 
protection both our ])ersons and the success of 
our voyage. Then after having encouraged one 
another, we got into our canoes. The river on 
which we embarked is called the Meskousing; it 



is very 'broad, with a sandy bottom, forming 
many shallows, which rendered navigation very 
difficult. It is full of vine-clad islets. On the 
banks appear fertile lands diversified with wood, 
prairie and hill. Ileie you find oaks, walnut, 
whitewood, and another kind of tree with 
branches armed with long thorns. "\Ye saw no 
small game or fish, but deer and moose in con- 
siderable numbers. 

"Our route was southwest, and after sailing 
about thirty leagues, we perceived a place which 
had all the appearances of an iron mine, and in 
fact, one of our party who had seen some before, 
averred that the one we had found was very 
good and very rich. It is covered with three 
feet of good earth, very near a chain of rock, 
whose base is covered with fine timber. After 
forty leagues on the same route, we reached the 
mouth of our river, and finding ourselves at -ii^ 
deg. north, we safely entered the Mississippi on 
the 17th of June, with a joy that I cannot ex- 

Louis Joliet, with his companion James Mar- 
quette, and the five other Frenchmen were the 
first white men who ever set foot upon any part 
of whit is now Crawford county. 

The next visit of any white men to Crawford 
county was in 1680, upon the 


In 1680 La Salle, who was then on the Illinois 
river, was desirous to have the Mississippi ex- 
plored above the point where it was first seen by 
Joliet; that is, above the mouth of the Wisconsin 
river; so he dispatched one Michael Accau, on 
an expedition thither; with him were Anloine 
Augiiel and the Rev. Louis Hennepin, a recol- 
let friar. The party proceeded down the Illinois 
river in April and up the Mississippi river. 
They were the second white men who ever saw 
any |iortion of what is, at this time, Crawford 
county, or who set foot upon its territory. This 
was in May, 1680. The leader of this party was 
Accau; Father Louis Hennepin wrote the account 
here given. It was first published in 168.3. 

" We set out from Fort Creve Coeur [on the 
Illinois river] the 29th of February, 1680, and 
toward evening, wliile descending the river 
Seignelay [Illinois] we met on our way several 
parties from Illinois returning to their village 
in their periaguas or gondolas loaded with meat. 
They would have obliged us to return, our two 
boatmen were strongly influenced, but as they 
would have had to pass by Fort Creve Coeur, 
where our Frenchmen would have stopped them, 
we pursued our way the next day, and my two 
men afterward confessed the design which they 
had entertained. 

"The river Seignelay on which we were s.ail- 
ing, is as deep and broad as the Seine at Paris, 
and in two or three places widens out to a 
quarter of a league. It is ski'ted by liills, 
whose sides are covered with fine. Large trees. 
Some of these hills are lialf a league apart, leav- 
ing between them a marshy strip, often inun- 
dated, especially in the autumn and spring, but 
producing, nevertheless,* very large trees. On 
ascending these hills you discover prairies fur- 
ther than the eye can reach, studded, at inter- 
vals, with groves of tall trees, apparently plant- 
ed there intentionally. The current of the river 
is not perceptible, except in time of great rains; 
it is at all times navigable for large barks about 
a hundred leagues, from its mouth to the Illi- 
nois village, whence its course almost always 
runs south by west. 

" On the 7th of March we found, about two 
leagues from its mouth, a Nation called Tama- 
roa, or Maroa, composed of 200 families. 'I hey 
would have taken us to their village lying west 
of the river Colbert, six or seven leagues be- 
low the mouth of the river Seignelay ; but our 
two canoemen, in hopes of still greater gain, 
preferred to pass on, according to the advice I 
then gave them. These last Indians seeing that 
we carried iron and arms to their enemies, and 
unable to overtake us in their periaguas, which 
are wooden canoes, much heavier than our bark 
one, which went much faster than their boats, 
dispatched some of their young men after us 



by 1,'ind, to pierce us with their arrows at some 
narrow part of the river, but in vain ; for soon 
discovering the fire made by these warriors at 
their ambuscade, we promptly crossed the river, 
gained the other side, and encamped on an 
island, leaving our canoe loaded and our little 
dog to wake us, so as to embark more expedi- 
tiously, should the Indians attempt to surprise 
us by swimming across. 

"Soon after leaving these Indians, we came 
to the mouth of the river Seignelay, fifty leagues 
distant from Fort Creve Cceur, and about 100 
leagues from the great Illinois village. It lies 
between 36 deg. and 37 deg. north latitude, and 
consequently 120 or thirty leagues from the 
Gulf of Mexico. 

"In the angle formed on the south by this 
river, at its mouth, is a flat precipitous rock, 
about forty feet high, very well suited for 
building a fort. On the northern side, opposite 
the rock, and on the west side beyond the river, 
are fields of black earth, the end of which you 
can not see, all ready for cultivation, which 
would be very advantageous for the existence 
of a colony. The ice which floated down from 
the north kept us in this place till the 12th of 
March, whence we continued our route, travers- 
ing the river and sounding on all sides to see 
whether it was navigable. There arc, indeed, 
three islets in the middle, near the mouth of 
the river Seignelay, which stop the floating 
wood and trees from the north and form sev- 
eral large sand-bars, yet the channels are deep 
enough, and there is siiflicicnt water for barks ; 
large flat-boats can pass there at all times. 

"The river Colbert [Mississipi)i] runs south- 
southwest, and comes from the north and north- 
west; it runs between two chains of mountains, 
very small here, which wind with the river,and 
in some places arc; pretty far from the banks, 
so that between the mountains and the river 
there are large prairies, where you often see 
herds of wild cattle l)rowsing. In other places 
these eminences leave semi-circular spots 
covered with grass or wood. Beyond these 

mountains you discover vast plains, but the 
more we approached the northern side ascend- 
ing,the earth did not appear to us so fertile, nor 
the woods so beautiful as in the Illinois 

"This great river is almost everywhere a short 
league in width, and in some places, two 
leagues; it is divided by a number of islands 
covered with trees, interlaced with so many 
vines as to be almost impassable. It receiveB 
no considerable river on the western side except 
that of the Olontenta and another, which comes 
from the west-northwest, seven or eight leagues 
from the Falls of St. Anthony, of Padua. On 
the eastern side you meet first an inconsider- 
able river, and then further on another, called 
by the Indians Ouisconsin, or Wisconsin, which 
comes from the east and east-northeast. Sixty 
leagues up you leave it, and make a portage of 
half a league to reach the bay of the Puana 
[Green bay] by another river which, near its 
source, meanders most curiously. It is almost 
as broad as the river Seignelay, or Illinois, and 
empties into the river Colbert, 100 leagues 
above the river Seignelay. 

"Twenty-four leagues above, you come to the 
Black river, called by the Nadouessious 
[Sioux], or Islati, Chabadeba, or Cbabaoudeba, 
it seems inconsiderable. Thirty leagues higher 
up. you find the Lake of Tears [Pepin], which 
we so named because the Indians who had 
taken us, wishing to kill us, some of them 
wept the whole night, to induce the others to 
consent to our death. This lake which is 
formed by the river Colbert, is seven leagues 
long and about four wide; there is no consider- 
able current in the middle that we could 
perceive, but only at its entrance and exit. Half 
a league below the Lake of Tears, on the south 
side, is Buffalo river, full of turtles. It is so 
called by the Indians on account of the num- 
bers of buffalo found there. We followed it 
for ten or twelve leagues; it empties with 
rapidity into the river Colbert, but as you 
ascend it, it is always gentle and free from 



rapids. It is skirted by mountains, far enough 
off in some places to form prairies. The mouth 
is wooded on both sides, and is full as wide as 
that of the Seignelay." 


The next expedition independent of that of 
Accau, and down the Mississippi from the St. 
Croix to the Wisconsin river, and, therefore, 
along the western border of what is now Craw- 
ford county, was that of Daniel Greysolon Dii- 
Lhiit, generally known as Duluth. He and some 
companions, in 1680, made the journey across 
from Lake Superior to the Mississippi by way 
of Rois Brule river and the St. Croix. Upon 
reaching the Mississippi, he learned the fact 
that some Frenchmen had passed \w and had 
been robbed and carried off by the Sioux 
This was Accau and his parly. These, however, 
he finally induced the Indians to liberate, and 
the whole party floated down the river to the 
mouth of the Wisconsin, returning by that 
stream to Mackinaw. 


LeSueur, a Frenchman, passed up the Miss- 
issippi from the mouth of the Wisconsin in 
1683 ; but of this voyage we have no account, 
only that he was on his way to the Sioux 

PERROt's voyage TO THE WEST. 

Nicholas Parrot was the next to ascend the 
Mississippi; and his was the fourth expedition 
that had floated along the western border of 
what is now Crawford county. This was in 
1684. Perrot had been appointed by the gov- 
ernor of Canada to command in the west, 
leaving Montreal with twenty men. His object 
was the establishing of a post on the Missis- 
sippi. He proceeded from the St. Lawrence to 
Green bay, and up the Fox river to the Portage; 
thence down the Wisconsin and up the Missis- 
sippi to Lake Pepin, on the east side of which, 
near its mouth, he erected a stockade. 

Tlie next year he prevented with a good deal 
of difficulty the capture of his post by the Fox 
lutlians and their allies. He passed the winter 

of 1085-6 in his stockade, and then returned to 
Green bay by the same route traveled by him 
when going out. In 1688 he again ascended 
the Mississippi from the mouth of the Wiscon- 
sin to the mouth of the St. Peters, and returned 
by the same route to Green bay. This ended 
the explorations of Perrot in the valley of the 


In the year 1700 the fifth explorer ascended 
the Mississippi. His name was Le Sueur, the 
same who had seventeen years before been 
among the Sioux. From the 1st of September 
until the 5th he advanced but fourteen leagues. 
It is probable he landed several times in what 
is now- Crawford county. LeSueur was the 
last to ascend the Mississippi until 1727, when 
Sieur La Perriere attempted a renewal of the 
fur trade which the governor of Canada liad 
resolved to abandon west of Mackinaw, some 
time previous. 


" Fort Beauharnais," on Lake Pepin, was 
erected by La Perriere, but it was not long oc- 
cupied as a military post. The same year, a 
Jesuit missionary, Louis Ignatius Guignas, at- 
tempted to found a mission among the Sioux 
on the upper Mississippi, passing up the river 
for tliat purpose to Fort Beauharnais, but it 
proved a failure. He was on the Mississippi 
again in 1736, and at Lake Pepin, with M. de 
St Pierre, but of his latter voyage little is 
known. From this time until the war of 175J- 
60, between France and Great Britain, French 
traders at intervals passed up the Mississippi ; 
but during that conflict tlie river was totally 
abandoned by Frenchmen. 


The first to ascend the river after Great 
Britain had assumed control of the country, 
was Jonathan Carver. In 1766 he reached the 
mouth of the Wisconsin, just above which he 
found an Indian village called La Prairies les 
Chiens by the French, the site of the present 
village of Prairie du Chien, in Crawford Co., 



^. ^e^^zK 



Wis. It was inhabited by the Fox Indians. 
He say.s the name meant Dog Plains. 

"It ('Prairies les Chiens') is a large town and 
contains about 300 families; the houses are well 
built after the Indian manner, and pleasantly 
situated on a very rich .soil, from which they 
raise every necessary of life in great abundance. 
I saw here many horses of a good size and 
shape. This town is the great mart where all 
the adjacent tribes, and even those who inhabit 
the most remote branches of the Mississippi, 
annually assemble about the latter end of May, 
bringing with them their furs to dispose of to 
the traders. But it is not always that they con- 
clude their sale here ; this is determined by a 
general council of the chiefs, who consult 
whether it would be more conducive to their in- 
terest to sell theii' goods at this place, or carry 
them on to Louisiana or Michillimackinac. 
According to the decision of this council they 
either proceed further, or return to their differ- 
ent homes. 

"The Mississippi, at (he entrance of the Wis- 
consin, near which stands a mountain of ccnisid- 
eralile licighl, is about li:ilf a milr over ; ! ut 
opposite to the last mciitionecl town it appears 
to be more than a mile wide, and full of islaiids, 
the soil ol' which is extraordinarily rich, and 
but thinly wooded. 

"A little further to the west, on the contrary 
side, a small river flows into the Mississippi, 
which the French call Le Jaun Riviere, or the 
Yellow river. I then bought a canoe, and with 
t«'o servants, one a French Canadian, and the 
other a Moiiawk of Canada, on the lOth pro- 
ceeded up the Mississippi." * * * 

"About sixty miles below this lake is a moun- 
tain remarkably situated; for it stands by itself 
exactly in the middle of the river, and looks as 
if it had slidden from the adjacent shore into 
the stream. It cannot be termed an island, as 
it rises immediately from the brink of the water 
to a considerable height. Hoth the Indians and 
the French call it the mountain in the river. 

"One day, having landed on the shore of the 
Mississippi, some miles below Lake Pepin, 
whilst my attendants were preparing my din- 
ner, I walked out to take a view of the adjacent 
country. I had not proceeded far before I came 
to a fine, level, open plain, on which I per- 
ceived at a little distance a partial elevation 
that had the appearance of an intrenchment. 
On a nearer inspection I had greater reason to 
suppose that it had really been intended for 
this many centuries ago. Notwithstanding 
it was now covered with grass, I could plainly 
discern that it had once been a breast work of 
about four feet in height, extending the best 
part of a mile, and sufficienly capacious to 
cover 5,000 men. Its form was somewhat cir- 
cular, and its flanks reached to the river. 
Though much defaced by time, every angle was 
distinguishable, and appeared as regular, and 
fashioned with as much military skill, as if 
planned by Vauban himself. The ditch was 
not visible, but I thought on examining more 
curiously, that I could perceive there certainly 
had been one. From this situation also I am 
convinced that it must have been for this pur- 
pose. It fronted the conntry, and the rear was 
covered by the river. ; nor was there any rising 
ground for a considerable way that commanded 
it ; a few straggling oaks were alone to be seen 
near it. In many places small tracks were 
across it by the feet of the elk and deer, and 
from the depth of the bed of earth by which it 
was covered, I was able to draw certain conclu- 
sions of its great antiquity. I examined all ilu 
angles and every part with great attention and 
have often blamed myself since for not encani])- 
ing on the spot, and drawing an exact plan of 
it. To show that this description is not the <'ff'- 
spring of a heated imagination, or the chimeri- 
cal tale of a mistaken traveler, I find on in- 
quiry since my return, that Mons St. Pierre, 
and several traders, have, at different times, 
taken notice of similar appearances, on whicli 
they have formed the same conjectures, but 
without examining them so minutely as I did. 




How a work of this kind could exist in a coun- 
try that has hitherto (according to the general 
received opinion) been the seat of war to un- 
tutored Indians alone, whose whole stock of 
military knowledge has only, till within two- 
centuries, amounted to drawing the bow, and 
whose only breast work even at present is the 
thicket, I know not. I have given as exact an 
account as possible of this singular appearance, 
and leave to future explorers of these distant 
regions to discover whether it is a production 
of nature or art. Perhdps the hints I have here 
given might lead to a more perfect investiga- 
tion of it, and give us very different ideas of 
the ancient state of realms that we at present 
believe to have been from the earliest periods 
only in the inhabitatiou.s of savages. 

"The Mississippi below this lake flows with 
a gentle current, but the breadth of it very 
uncertain, in some places being upward of a 
mile, in others not more than a quarter. This 
river has a range of mountains on each side 
throughout the whole of the way, which in par- 
ticular parts approach near to it, in others lie at 
a greater distance. The land betwixt the moun- 
tains, and on their sides, is generally covered 
with grass, with a few groves of trees inter- 
spersed, near which large droves of deer and 
elk are frequently seen feeding. In many 
places pyramids of rocks appeared, resembling 
old ruinous towers; at other amazing preci- 
pices, and what is very remarkable, whilst this 
scene presented itself on one side, the opposite 
side of the .rame mountain was covered with the 
finest herbage, which gradually ascended to its 
summit. From thenee the most beautiful and 
extensive prospect that imagination can form 
opens to your view. Verdant plains, fruitful 
m^eadows, numerous islands, and all these 
abounding with a variety of trees that yield 
amazing quantities of fruit, without care or 
cultivation, such as the nut-tree, the maple which 
produces sugar, vines loaded with rich grapes, 
and plum trees bending under their blooming 
burdens; but above all, the fine river flow- 

ing gently beneath, and reaching as far as the 
eye can extend, by turns attract your attention 
and excite your wonder." 

The following excellent summary of explora- 
tions from DuLuth to Carver, is from the Illus- 
trated Historical Atlas of Wisconsin of 1878: 

"In 1680, the trader DuLuth was at the head 
of Lake Superior; and at the same time, LaSalle 
was on the Illinois river. The latter dis- 
patched Father Louis Hennepin, with two com- 
panions to e.xplore that river to its mouth. 
From this point they turned their canoe up the 
Mississippi, and fell into the hands of the Sioux, 
who led them captive to their home above the 
falls of St. Anthony, where they passed the 
winter. The following summer, 168], Henne- 
pin represented to his captors that he expected 
a party of Frenchmen at the Wisconsin with 
merchandise, which induced them to set out in 
canoes to meet the traders, the Father being 
permitted to follow. The party in advance, 
upon reaching the Wisconsin and finding no 
Frenchmen, retraced their course and met their 
prisoner with severe reproaches for deceiving 
them. DuLuth, hearing of these men, de- 
scended the St. Croix with five attendants and 
joined them on the Mississippi, whereupon 
taking Hennepin under his protection, the 
whole party proceeded down the Mississippi 
and by way of the Wisconsin to Green bay, 
stopping within a day or two's journey of the 
Wisconsin, to smoke some meat. 

"Nicholas Perrot proceeded by this route to 
visit the Sioux in 168.3. He was at the time, or 
soon afterward, commissioned by the governor 
of Canada to manage the interests of commerce 
from Green bay westward. He built a small 
log fort nearly opposite tlie mouth of Chippewa 
river, which he appears to have made his winter 
headquarters for several years. It was called 
the post of the Nadouessioux (Sioux). De 
Borie Guillot is mentioned by Charlevoix as 
trading near the Mississippi, whfence he was re- 
called in 16SV; and is cited by Perrot as com- 
manding the French traders in the neighbor- 



hood of the Wisconsin on the Mississippi. Le- 
Sueiir, in 1683, descended tlie Wisconsin and 
ascended tlie Mississippi to tlie Sioux in the 
region about St. Anthony, with whom he con- 
tinued to trade at intervals until 1702. His 
last voyage was made from Louisiana, the 
governor of Canada refusing permission, having 
resolved to abandon the country west of Mack- 
inaw. An attempt was made to renew the 
traffic with the Sioux by this route in 172Y by an 
expedition under the Sieur deLaPerriere, which 
established a post and erected a stockade on 
the north side of Lake Pepin. The traders 
reached this point at intervals for a few years; 
after which, it was entirely abandoned. These 
are all the trustworthy accounts given of this 
region during the French domination in the 
northwest. Tliey show that tlie waters of tlie 
Wisconsin and tlie Mississippi were traversed 
at intervals, but do not indicate thai the lu.c.iliiy 
of Praiiie du ("liicn was visited or attractccl 
any attention, 'i'iiis nia\ 1 e ( X|)laiii((l in con- 
nection with tlie causes that subst (jiniitly 
bi'ought it into notice. 

"In 1766, Jonathan Carver visited this icnion 
with a view of ascertiining favorable situalions 
for new settlements, and is the first traveler u Im 
mentions Prairie du t'liien. He set out fioiii 
Mackinaw, the most remote British post in the 
northwest, in the month of September, in the 
company of some traders. In passing down the 
Wisconsin, he observed upon the right bank 
about five miles above its mouth, at the eastern 
base of a pyramid of rocks, the ruins of a vil- 
lage of the Foxes, which had been abandoned 
for the better location at the Prairie du 
('liien. Here he found about 300 families in 
houses well built after the Indian manner, and 
jileasantly situated on a very rich soil, from 
which the necessaries of life were raised in 
abundance. The occupants had many horses of 
good size and shape. The peculiarities of the 
location are remarked, and the place is described 
as a summer resort for traders, who were met 
here annually about the month of May, by a 

large assemblage of the Indian tribes, both near 
and remote, with furs to dispose of, so that it 
hail become a trading mart of considerable im- 
poi tance. While here, the different tribes, even 
though at war with each other, refrained from 
any acts of liostility, a voluntary agreement 
which they ever afterward observed. Some- 
times, however, they proceeded to Mackinaw or 
Louisiana before disposing of their furs. In 
Carver's faithful and minute narrative, no men- 
tion is made of any French settlement or other 
white residents, or of fortifications, from which 
circumstance it is highly probable that there 
were none in existence. His book did not in- 
duce the progress of settlement into this region, 
and the British outposts were advanced no fur- 
ther than Mackinaw, consetpiently, Prairie du 
Chien is not again brought in notice by accounts 
of that period, until 1780. In June of that year, 
the traders had collected a lot of peltries, and 
deposited them at the Prairie, in charge of 
Charles de Langlade, a noted trader of Green 
Bay and Mackinaw. The American forces then 
occupied Illinois, and hearing reports that they 
were intending the capture of Prairie du Chier, 
the ciinunandant at Mackinaw, sent forward an 
expedition to bring away the stores, in charge 
of John Long, lieutenant in a company of trad- 
ers enrolled as militia at that post. The party 
consisting of twenty Canadians, and thirty-six 
of the Fox and Sioux tribes, proceeded in nine 
large birch canoes, laden with presents for tlie 
Indians at the village. Arriving on the seventh 
day at the mouth of the Wisconsin, they found 
there an array of 200 Foxes on horseback, 
armed with spears, bows and arrows, « ho 
at first did not seem pleased with tlie visitors, 
but after a short parley, conducted them to their 
village, and feasted them upon dog, bear, bea- 
ver, deer, mountain cat, and raccoon, boiled in 
bear's grease, and mixed with huckleberries. 
A council was then held, the presents were dis- 
tributed, the chiefs assented to the removal of 
the ])eltries, and the visitors re-entered their 
canoes and moved up to the place of deposit, a 



log house, where they found Capt. Langlade. 
Three hundred packs of the peltries were placed 
in the canoes, the remainder, some sixty in 
number, they were unable to store away, and 
therefore burned, after which they returned to 
Mackinaw. The Americans never came, as an- 
ticipated. The narrative shows no material 
change in the place, or the course of trade since 
Carver's visit, except that the traders from the 
lakes had erected a building, in which their furs 
could be temporarily lodged and guarded." 

We find no further accounts of visits of trav- 
elers until 17S0. At that date Capt. J. Long 
while at Mackinaw was sent by the command- 
ing officer to accompany a party of Indians and 
Canadians to the Mississippi. Information had 
been received at Mackinaw that the Indian 
traders had deposited their furs at Prairie du 
Chien, where there was a town of considerable 
note, built under the command of Mons. Lang- 
lade, the King's interpreter, and the object of 
the expedition was to secure these furs and keep 
them from the Americans. Capt. Long left 
Mackinaw with thirty-six Indians of the Onta- 
gamies and Sioux, twenty Canadians in nine 
large birch canoes, laden with Indian presents. 
The party arrived at Green Bay in four days 
and proceeded through the Fox and Wisconsin 
rivers to the forks of the Mississippi where 
he met 200 of the Fox Indians, and had a 
feast of five Indian dogs, bear, beaver, deer, 
mountain cat and raccoon boiled in bear's grease 
and mixed with hnckleberries! He proceeded to 
Prairie du Chien where he found the merchants 
peltries in packs in a log house, guarded by 
Capt. Langlade and some Indians. He took 
300 packs of the best skins and filled the canoes. 
Sixty more were burnt to prevent the enemy 
(the Americans) from taking them. He then 
returned to Green Bay (in seventeen days) and 
thence to Mackinaw. 

Capt. Long's account of this trip written by 
himself will be found in full in a subsequent 

It was nearly forty years subsequent to Car- 
ver's visit before the Mississippi was ascended 
by any one who left. a record of his journey. 
In 1805 Maj. Z. M. Pike made a reconnoisance 
up the river. We give his description of what 
he saw as he passed from a point below the 
mouth of the Wisconsin up to "a prairie called 
La Crosse:" 

Sept. 2, [1805], Monday.— After making two 
short reaches, we commenced one, which is 
thirty miles in length, the wind serving, we just 
made it; and encamped on the east side oppo- 
site to the mouth of Turkey river. In the 
course of the day, we landed to shoot at pig- 
eons; the moment a gun was fired, some Indi- 
ans, who were on the shore above us, ran down 
and put off in their peroques with great pre- 
cipitation; upon which Mr. Blondeau informed 
me, that all the women and children were 
frightened at the very name of an American 
boat, and that the men held us in great respect, 
conceiving us very quarrelsome, and much for 
war, and also very brave. This information I 
used as prudence suggested. We stopped at an 
encampment, about three miles below the 
town, where they gave us some excellent ])lums. 
They dispatched a peroque to the village, to 
give notice, as I supposed, of our arrival. It 
commenced raining about dusk, and rained all 
night. Distance, forty miles. 

September 3, Tuesday. — Embarked at a 
pretty early hour. Cloudy. Met two peroques of 
family Indians; they at first asked Mr. Blon- 
deau, "if we were for war, or if going to war?" 
I now experienced the good effect of lia\ itig 
some person on board who could speak ilieir 
language ; for they presented me with three 
pair of ducks and a quantity of venison, suffi- 
cient for all our crew, one day; in return, I 
made them some trifling presents. Afterwards 
met two peroques, carrying some of the war- 
riors spoken of on the 2d inst. They kept at 
a great distance, until spoken to by Mr. Blon- 
deau, when tliey informed him that their ])arty 
had proceeded up as high as Lake Pepin, with 



out effecting anytliing. It is surprising what a 
dread the Indians in this quarter have of the 
Americans. I have often seen them go around 
islands, .to avoid meeting iiiy boat. It appears 
to mo evident, tiiat the traders have taken great 
pains to impress upon the minds of the savages, 
the idea of our being a very vindictive, fero- 
cious and warlike people. This impression 
was perhaps made with no good intention; but 
wiien they find that our conduct towards them 
is guided by magnanimity and justice, instead 
of operating in an injurious manner, it will 
have the effect to make them reverence, at the 
same time they fear us. Distance, twenty-five 

"September 4th, Wednesday. — Breakfasted 
just below the mouth of the Wisconsin. Ar- 
rived at the Prairie Les Chiens about 11 o'clock; 
took quarters at Capt. Fishers, and were politely 
received by him and Mr. Frazer. 

"September 5th, Thursday. — Embarked about 
half past 10 o'clock in a Schenectady boat, to go 
to the mouth of the Wisconsin, in order to take 
the latitude, and look at the situation of the 
adjacent hills for a post. Was accompanied by 
Judge Fisher, Mr. Frazer and Mr. Woods. We 
ascended tlic hill on the west side of the Mis- 
sissippi, and made a choice of a spot which I 
thought most eligible, being level on the top, 
liaving a spring in the rear, and commanding a 
view of the country around. A shower of rain 
came on which wet us, and we returned to the 
village without having ascended the Wisconsin 
as we intended. Marked four trees with A, B, 
C, D, and squared the sides of one in the center. 
Wrote to the General. 

"September 6th, Friday. — Had a small council 
with the Puants and Winnebagoes; and a cliief 
of the lower band of the Sioux. Visited and 
laid out a jxisition for a post, on a hill called 
Petit (Tris, on the Wisconsin, tliree miles above 
its mouth. Mr. Fisher accompanied me; was 
taken very sick, in consequence of drinking 
some water out of the Wisconsin. The Puants 
never have any white interpreters, nor have the 

FolleAvoine (Menoraonee) Nation. In my coun- 
cil I spoke to a Frenchman, he to a Sioux, who 
interpreted to some of the Puants. 

"September 11^, Saturday. — My men beat all 
the villagers hopping and jumping. Began to 
load my new boats. 

"September 8th, Sunday. — Embarked at half 
past 11 o'clock in two batteaux. The wind fair 
and fresh. I found myself very much embar- 
rassed and cramped in my new boats, with 
provision and baggage. I embarked two in- 
terpreters, one to perform the whole voyage, 
whose name was Pierre Rosseau, and the other 
named Joseph Reinulle, paid by Mr. Frazer to 
accompany me as high as the Falls of St. 
Anthony. Mr. Frazer is a young gentleman, 
clerk to Mr. Blakely, of Montreal; he was born 
in Vermont, but has latterly resided in Canada. 
To the attention of this gentleman I am much 
indebted; he procured for me everything in his 
power that I stood in need of; dispatched his 
bark canoes and remained himself to go on 
with me. His design was to winter with some 
of the Sioux bands. We sailed well, came 
eighteen miles and encamped on the w'est bank. 
I must not omit here to bear testimony to the 
politeness of all the principal inhabitants of the 
village. There is, however, a material distinc- 
tion to be made in the nature of those atten- 
tions. The kindness of Messrs. Fisher, Frazer 
and Woods (all Americans), seemed to be the 
spontaneous effusions of good will, and partial- 
ity to their countrymen; it extended to the 
accommodation, convenience, exercises and 
pastimes of my men; and whenever they 
proved superior to the French openly showed 
their pleasure. But the French Canadians ap- 
peared attentive, rather from their natural good 
manners, the sincere friendship; however, it 
produced from them the same effect that natural 
good-will did in others. 

"September 9th, Monday. — Embarked early. 
Dined at Cape Garlic or at Garlic river, after 
which we came on to an island on the east side 
about five miles below the river Iowa, and 



encamped. Rained before sunset. Distance 
twenty-eight miles. 

"September 10th, Tuesday. — Rain still con- 
tinuing, we remained at our camp Having 
shot at some pigeons, the report was heard at 
the Sioux lodges; when La Yieulle sent down 
six of his young men to inform me that he had 
waited three days with meat, etc., but last 
night tliey had began to drink, and, that on the 
next day he would receive me with his people 
sober. I returned him for answer, that the 
season was advanced, that time was pressing, 
and that if the rain ceased, I must go on. Mr. 
Frazer and the interpreter went home with the 
Indians. We embarked about 1 o'clock. 
Frazer returning, informed me that the chief 
acquiesced in my reasons for pressing forward, 
but that lie had prepared a pipe (by way of 
letter) to present me, to show to all the Sioux 
above, with a message to inform them that I 
was a chief of their new fathers, and that he 
wished me to be treated with friendship and 
respect. * * * We embarked about half 
past 3 o'clock, came three miles and encamped 
on the west side. Mr. Frazer we left behind, 
but he came up with his two pirogues about 
dusk. It commenced raining very hard. In 
the night a pirogue arrived at the lodges at 
his camp. During our stay at their camp, tliere 
were soldiers appointed to keep the crowd from 
my boats. At my departure their soldiers said: 
As I had shaken hands with their chief, tiny 
mtist shake hands with my soldiers. In whicli 
request I willingly indulged them. 

"September 11th, Wednesday. — Embarked at 
V o'clock, although raining. Mr. Frazer's 
canoes also came on until 9 o'clock. Stopped 
for breakfast and made a tire. Mr. Frazer staid 
with me, and finding his pirogues not quite 
able to keep up, he dispatched them. We em- 
barked ; came on until near 6 o'clock, and en- 
camped on the west side. Saw nothing of his 
pirogues after they left us. Supposed to have 
come sixteen miles this day. Rain and cold 
winds, all day ahead. The river has never been 

clear of islands since I left Prairie les Chiens. 
I absolutely believe it, here, to be two miles 
wide. Hills, or rather prairie knobs, on both 

"September 12th, Thursday. It raining very 
hard in the morning, we did not embark until 
10 o'clock, Mr. Frazer's pirogues then com- 
ing up. It was still raining and was very cold. 
Passed the Racine river, also a prairie called La 
Crosse, from a game of ball played frequently on 
it by the Sioux Indians. This prairie is very 
handsome; it has a small, square hill, similar to 
some mentiojied by Carver. It is bounded in 
the rear by hills similar to the Prairie les 
Chiens. On this prairie Mr. Frazer showed me 
some holes, dug by the Sioux, when in expecta- 
tion of an attack, into which they first put their 
women and children, and then crawl them- 
selves. They were generally round, and about 
ten feet in diameter; but some were half moons 
and quite a breastwork. This I understood was 
the chief work, which was the piincipal redoubt. 
Their modes of constructing are, the moment 
they apprehend or discover an enemy on a 
prairie, they commence digging with their 
knives, tomahawks and a wooden ladle ; and in 
an incredibly short space of time they have a 
hole sufficiently deep to cover themselves and 
their family, from the balls ffr arrows of the 
enemy. They have no idea of taking those sub- 
terraneous redoubts by storm, as they would 
probably lose a great nuluber of men in the 
attack ; and althbugh they might be successful 
in the event, it would be considered a very im- 
prudent action. Mr. Frazer, finding his canoes 
not able to keep up, staid at this prairie to or- 
ganize one of them, intending then to overtake 


"The village of the Prairie les Chiens is situ- 
ated about one league above the mouth of the 
Wisconsin river. » * * * The prairie on 
which the village is situated is bounded in the 
rear by high, bald hills. It is from one mile to 
three-quarters of a mile from the river, and ex- 



tends about eight miles from the Mississippi to 
where it strikes the Wisconsin, at the Petit Gris, 
wliich bears from the village southeast by east. 

* * From the village to Lake Pepin we 
have, on the west shore, first Yellow river, 
about twenty yards wide, bearing from the 
Mississippi nearly due west. Second, the Iowa 
river, about 100 yards wide, bearing from the 
Mississippi about northwest. Third, the Racine 
river, about twenty yards wide, bearing from 
the Mississippi nearly west, and navigable for 
canoes sixty miles. Fourth, the rivers Embarra 
and L'Eau Claire, which join their waters just 
as they form a confluence with the Mississippi, 
and are about sixty yards wide, and bear nearly 

"On the east shore, in the same distance, is 
the river de la Prairie la Crosse, which empties 
into the Mississippi, at the head of the prairie 
of that name. It is about twenty yards wide, 
and bears north-northwest. 

"We then meet with the Black river. * * 

* * In this division of the Mississippi the 
shores are more than three-fourths prairie on 
both sides, or, more properly speaking, bald 
hills, which, instead of running parallel with 
the river, form a continual succession of high, 
perpendicular cliffs and low valleys ; they ap- 
pear to head on the river, and to transverse the 
country in an angular direction. Those hills 
and valleys give rise to some of the most sub- 
lime and romantic views I ever saw. But this 
irregular scenery is sometimes interrupted by a 
wide extended plain, which brings to mind the 
verdant lawn of civilized life, and woiild almost 
induce the traveler to imagine himself in the 
center of a highly cultivated plantation. The 
timber of this division is generally birch, elm 
and Cottonwood, all the cliifs being bordered 
by cedar." 

Maj. S. II. Long having made a tour to the 
portage of the Fox and Wisconsin rivers, re- 
turned to Prairie du Chien and made a voyage 
to the Falls of St. Anthony, in a six-oared skiff, 
accompanied by a Mr. Hempstead as interpret- 

er, and by two young men named King and 
Gunn, grandsons of Capt. Jonathan Carver, 
who were going up to the Sauteurs to establish 
their claim to lands granted by those tribes to 
their grandfather. The day after his arrival, 
(July 23, 1817,) he examined the country to 
find a location better adapted for a post than 
the present one, but did not succeed. While 
liere he made excursions in the surrounding 
country, and refers to the remains of ancient 
earth-works above the mouth of the Wisconsin, 
more numerous and of greater extent than had 
heretofore been noticed. On the 25th he meas- 
ured and planned Fort Crawford. He says it 
is a square of 340 feet each side, of wood, with 
a magazine 12x24 of stone — that it will accom- 
modate five companies — block houses, two 
stories high, with cupolas or turrets. The 
building of the works was commenced July 3, 
ISlC, by troops under command of Col. Hamil- 
ton, previous to which time no timber had been 
cut, or stone quarried for the purpose. He 
says: "Exclusive of stores, workshops and 
stables, the village contains only sixteen dwell- 
ing houses, occupied by families. In the rear 
of the village about three-quarters of a mile 
are four others, two and a half miles above are 
five, and at the upper end of the prairie are 
four, and seven or eight scattered over the 
prairie So that the whole number of family 
dwellings now occupied does not exceed thirty- 
eight. The buildings are generally of logs, 
plastered with mud or clay, and he thinks the 
village and inhabitants have degenerated since 
Pike was here in )805. The inhabitants are 
{)rincipally of French and Indian extraction. 
One mile back of the village is the 'Grand 
Farm,' an extensive enclosure cultivated by the 
settlers in common. It is about six miles in 
length, and one-quarter to one-half a mile in 
width, surrounded by a fence on one side, and 
the river bluffs on the other, thus secured from 
the depredations of cattle." He speaks highly 
of Capt. Duffhey, the commanding officer. He 
says of the name of the village, it derives its 



name from a family of Indians, formerly known 
by the name of "The Dog," that the chief's 
name was "The Dog." This family or band has 
become extinct. Tlie following tradition con- 
cerning them came to his knowledge: "That a 
large party of Indians came down the Wiscon- 
sin from Green Bay; that they attacked the 
family or tribe of the "Dogs" and massacred 
almost the whole of them and returned to 
Green Bay; that the few who had .succeeded in 
making their escape to the woods, returned 
after their enemies had evacuated the prairie, 
and re-established themselves in their former 
place of residence, and that they were the Indi- 
ans inhabiting the prairie at the time it was set- 
tled by the French. 


[From a "Journal of a Toyage from St. Louis to the Falls 
of St. Anthony in 1819," by Maj. Thomas Forsyth, Indian 

Agent. 1 

I set out this morning with a view, if possi- 
ble, to reach Prairie du Chien, but having no 
wind in our favor, and current strong, we could 
get no further than the mouth of the Ouiscon- 
sin. Distance to-day, twenty-four miles. 

Monday, July 5, 1819. — I arrived to-day at 9 
A. M., at Prairie du Chien, and immediately the 
wind sprang up and blew a fresh breeze. This 
was vexing, as I had experienced five days ot 
head winds successively. I found here, await- 
ing my arrival, the Red Wing's son, a Sioux 
Indian, who wished to be considered something, 
with a band of followers. He invited me to a 
talk, and after relating the loss of one of his 
young men who was killed by the Chippewas, 
he expressed a wish that I would take pity on 
all present, and give them some goods. All 
this was a begging speech. I told him that I 
meant to go up with the troops to the river St. 
Peter's, and on my way up I would stop at their 
different villages, where I would speak to them, 
and give them a few goods. Here I had noth- 
ing to say, as I could not give any goods at 
this place, because it required goods to give 
weight to words, and make them understand 

me well. Yet he is such a beggar, that he would 
not take any refusal. I got up in an abrupt 
manner and left him and band, to study awhile. 
The Leaf, the principal chief of the Sioux, ar- 
rived this evening. 

Tuesday, 6th. — Ihe Kettle chief, with a 
band of Foxes, arrived here to-daj', to make 
arrangements with Mr. Partney about selling 
him the ashes at the different mines. A boat 
belonging to the contractor arrived to-day, 
loaded with provisions for the troops, in twen- 
ty-five days from Wood river. 

Wednesday, 7th. — The contractor's boat left 
this day to return to Wood river. 

Thursday, 8th. — A young Folle Avoine (Me- 
nomonee) stabbed a young Sioux in a fit of 
jealousy to-day, near the fort. He was in 

Friday, 9th — The Sioux Indians yesterday 
seized on the Folle Avoine Indian who had 
stabbed the young Sioux, and kept him in con- 
finement, well tied and guarded by a few young 
Sioux; but the Sioux chiefs sent for the Folle 
Avoine, and made him a present of a blanket 
and some other articles of clothing, and made 
him and the young Sioux whom he had stabbed 
eat out of the same dish together, thus forgiving 
and forgetting the past. 

Sunday, 11th. — Everyday since my arrival at 
this place, the wind has blown up the river; 
to-day it came around south and with rain; 
\\ ind settled at the northwest. 

Monday, 12th. — The Red Wing's son is still 
here a begging. He invited me to talk with 
him in council yesterday. This I refused as I 
did not wish to be troubled with such a 

Tuesday, 13th. — Much rain this morning; 
wind southwest. 

Wednesday, 14th. — Some Winnebagoes ar- 
rived from headwaters of Rocky river, and por- 
tage of Ouisconsin. These fellows are scien- 
tific beggars. Wind north. 

Thursday, 15th. — Yesterday evening the Red 
Wing's son's band of Sioux Indians set out for 



their liomes, and I am glad of it, for they are a 
troublesome set of beggars. The wind blows 
hard from the north to-day, which makes it much 
cooler than it has been for many days before. 

Friday, 16th, — The wind continues to blow 
iiard from the north, and the weatlier is still 
cool. Two men arrived this evening from 
Green Bay in a canoe. 

Saturday, 1 7th. — Mr. Boulhillier (Francois 
Bouthillier) arrived here to-day from Green Bay. 
Mr. Shaw also arrived here to-day from St. 
Louis in a canoe, having left his horses at 
Rocky Island. He informs me that he 
left Belle Fontaine on the 15th ult., that the re- 
cruits destined for the Mississippi set out on 
the day before and may be expected shortly. 

Sunday, 18th — Took a ride out in the coun- 
try. Found some of the situations handsome, 
bu' the farmers are poor hands at cultivation. 
Flour, ^10 per cwt.; corn, $3 per bushel; eggs, 
$1 per dozen; chickens,*!! to $1.25 a couple. 
Butter, none made. 

Monda' , 19th — A little rain, and cool all day. 
Mr. Shaw left to-day to return home. 

Tuesday, 20th — A little rain to-day. 

Wednesday, 21st — Winds fair for boats com- 
ing up the river, and little rain to-day. 

Thursday, 22d — A fine wind up the river to- 
day, with much rain. The old Red Wing, a 
Sioux chief, with about twenty of his followers, 
arrived to-day. This is another begging expe- 

Friday, 23d — The wind is still up the river, 
with some rain. The old Red Wing and I had 
a long talk, and, as I supposed, the whole pur- 
port was begging. 

Saturday, 24th — Having heard much talk 
about Carreis' claim to land at or near St. 
Peter's river, and understanding that the Red 
Wing knewor said something about it last year, 
curiosity led me to make inquiries of him, having 
now an opportunity. He told me he remem- 
bered of hearing his father say that lands lying 
on the west side of Lake Pepin, known by the 
name of the old wintering places, were given to 

an Englishman; that he is now an old man 
(about sixty years of age), and does not, him- 
self, remember the transactions. I wished to 
continue the conversation, but the old man did 
not like it and therefore I did not })ress it. 

Sunday, 25th — Wind north and a warm day. 

Monday, 26th — Capt. Hickman and family 
left this place to-day in an open boat for ^^t. 
Louis. Wind north, and another warm day. 

Tuesday, 27th — Another warm day. No news 
of any kind. 

Wednesday, 28th — A boat arrived here from 
Green Bay. 

Thursday, 29th^ — This is the warmest day I 
have experienced this season, although there 
blew a hard wind up the river all day. 

Friday, 30th — Yesterday evening the war party 
of Foxes who had been on a hunt of some 
of the Sioux of the interior, returned without 
finding any. Much wind and rain this morning. 
I returned Mr. Moore $3, which Mr. Aird gave 
me last September to buy him some articles, 
which could not be procured. 

Saturday, 31st — Wind light up the river; no 
boats, no recruits, no news, nor anything else 
from St. Louis. 

Sunday, August 1st — Maj. Marston set out to- 
day early with twenty-seven troops in three 
boats to garrison Fort Armstrong, at Rocky 
Island. The boat which brought the settlers' 
goods from Green Bay a few days since set out 
to-day to return home. Some rain to-day; 
weather warm. 

Monday, 2d — Thank God! a boat loaded with 
ordnance and stores of different kinds arrived 
to-day, and said a provision boat would arrive 
to-morrow, but no news of the recruits. 

Tuesday, 3d — VVeather warm, with some 

Wednesday, 4th — This morning the provision 
boat arrived. No news from St. Louis. This 
boat brings news of having passed a boat with 
troops on board destined for this place. Some 
of the men say two boats. Some rain to-day. 



Thursday, 5tli — Much rain last night. Col. 
Leavenworth is determined to set out on the 7th 
if things can be got ready for the expedition to 
St. Peter's. The colonel has very properly, in 
my opinion, engaged the two large boats now 
here, with as many men belonging to the boats 
as will remain to accompany the expedition, 
their contents being wanted for the new estab- 
lishment at St. Peter's. Without the assistance 
of these two boats, it would appear impossible 
for the expedition to go on. 

Friday, 6th — Yesterday evening some French- 
men, who would not agree to go any further up 
the Mississippi, set out for St. Louis in a bark 
canoe. This morning eight discharged soldiers 
set out from this place for St. Louis in a skiff. 

Saturday, 7th — Every exertion was made to 
get off to-day, but impossible. A fine wind up 
the river. 

Sunday, 8th — This morning the colonel told 
me that he would be ready in an hour, and 
about 8 o'clock we set out for river St. Peter's. 
The troops consisting of ninety-eight rank and 
file, in fourteen bateaux and two large boats 
loaded with provisions and ordnance, and stores 
of different kinds, as also my boat; and a barge 
belonging to the colonel, making seventeen 
boats; and in the whole ninety-eight soldiers 
and about twenty boatmen. I felt myself 
quite relieved when we got under way. We 
made today eighteen miles. 

From Schoolcrafts "Discovery of tlie Sources 
of the Mississippi River," we extract the follow- 

"At the rapids of Black river, which enters 
opposite our encampment, a saw mill, we are 
informed, had been erected by an inhabitant of 
Prairie du Chien. Thus the empire of the arts 
has begun to make its way into these regions, 
and proclaims the advance of a heavy civiliza- 
tion into a valley which has heretofore only re- 
sounded to the savage war-whoop. Or, if a 
higher grade of society and arts has ever before 
existed in it, as some of our tumuli and antiqui- 

ties would lead us to infer, the light of history 
has failed to reach us on the subject. 

"At the spot of our encampment, as soon as 
the .shades of night closed in, we were visited 
by hordes of ephemera. The candles lighted 
in our tents became the points of attraction for 
these evanescent creations. They soon, however, 
began to feel the influence of the sinking of 
the thermometer, and the air was imperceptibly 
cleared of them in an hour or two. By the hour 
of 'i o'clock the next morning (Aug. 5, 1820), 
the expedition was again in motion descending 
the river. It halted for breakfast at Painted 
Rock, on the west shore. While this matter 
was being accomplished, I found an abundant 
locality of unios in a curve of the shore which 
produced an eddy. Fine specimens of U. pifr- 
pureus, elongatus and orbiculatus were obtained. 
With the increased spirit and animation which 
the whole party felt on the prospect of our ar- 
rival at Prairie du Chien, we proceeded unre- 
mittingly on our descent, and reached that place 
at 6 o'clock in the evening. 

"Prairie du Chien does not derive its name 
from tlie dog, but from a noted family of Fox 
Indians bearing this name, who anciently dwelt 
here. The old town is said to have been about 
a mile below the present settlement, which was 
commenced by Mr. Dubuque and his associates 
in 1783.* The prairie is most eligibly situated 
along the margin of the stream, above wliose 
floods it is elevated. It consists of a heavy 
stratimi of diluvial pebbles and bowlders, which 
is picturesquely bounded by lofty cliffs of the 
Silurian limestones, and their accompanying 
column of stratification. The village has the 
old and shabby look of all the antique French 
towns on the Mississippi, and in the great lake 
basins; the dwellings being constructed of logs 
and barks, and the court-yards picketed in, 
as if lliey -nere intended for deience. It is 
called Kipisagee by the Chi)ipewas and Algon- 
quin tribes, generally meaning the place of the . 

* This is shown in a subsequent chapter to be erroneous. 



jet or overflow of the (Wisconsin) river. This, 
in popular parlance, estimated to be 300 miles 
below St. Peter's and 600 above St. Louis. f 

Its latitude is 43 deg., 3 min., 6 sec. It is 
the seat of justice of Crawford county, having 
been so named in honor of W. H. Crawford, 
secretary of the treasury of the U. S. It is, 
together with all the region west of Lake Mich- 
igan, att ched to the territory of Michigan. 
There is a large and fertile island in the Missis- 
sippi, opposite the place. 

"We found the garrison to consist of a single 
company of infantry, under the command of 
Capt. J. Fowle, Jr.,* who received us courteous- 
ly, and offered the salute due to the rank of His 
Excellency, Gov. Cass. The fort is a square 
stockade, with bastions at two angles. There 
was found on this part of the prairie, when it 
came to be occupied with a garrison by the 
Americans, in 1819, an ancient platform-mound, 
in an exactly square form, the shape and outlines 
of which were preserved with exactitude by the 
prairie sod. "This earthwork, the probable evi- 
dence of a condition of ancient society, arts and 
events of a race who are now reduced so low, 
was, with good taste, preserved by the military 
when they erected this stockade. One of the 
ofticers built a dwelling house upon it, thus con- 
verting it to the use, and probably the only use, 
to which it was originally devoted. No nieas- 
iirciiicnts h:ive been preserved of its original 
condition; but judging from present appearances, 
it must have squared seventy-five feet and have 
hail an elevation of eight feet. 

"I solicited permission of Gov. Cass to visit 
the lead mines of Dubuque, which are situated 
on the west bank of the Mississippi, at the com- 
puted distance of twenty-five leagues below 
Prairie du Chien. Furnished with a light canoe, 
manned by eight voyugeurs, including a guide, 

+ These distances are reduces by Cx. Di>c. 2jT, respectively 
to aiO and .MS miles. 

' This officer entered the army in 1812, serving with reputa- 
tion. He rose through various grades of the service to the 
ranli of Lieut. Col. of the flth infantry. He lost his life on 
the:;.')thof .\pril, IKis, liy the e.v plosion of the steamer Moselle, 
on the Ohio Kivcr. 

I left the prairie at half-past 1 1 a. m., (Aug. 
6), passed the entrance of the Wisconsin, on the 
left bank, at the distance of a league.* Opposite 
this point is the high elevation which Pike, in 
1806, recommended to be occupied with h mili- 
tary work. The suggestion has not, however, 
been adopted; military men probably thinking 
that however eligible the site might be for a 
work where civilized Nations were likely to come 
into contact, a simple style of defensive works 
would serve the purpose of keeping the Indian 
tribes in check. I proceeded nine leagues be- 
low, and encamped at the site of a Fox villagef 
located on the east bank, a mile below the en- 
trance of 1'urkey river from the » est. 

The village, consisting of twelve lodges, was 
now temporarily deserted, the Indians being 
probably absent on a hunt; but if so, it was re- 
markable that not a soul or living thing was left 
behind, not even a dog. My guide, indeed, in- 
formed me that the cause of the desertion was 
the fears entertained of an attack from the Sioux, 
in retaliation for the massacre lately perpetrated 
l)y them on the heads of the St. Peter's." 

In 1823, Count Beltrami came up the Missis- 
sippi on the steamer Virginia (118 feet long 
and twenty-two feet wide) in the month of May, 
and stopped at Prairie du Chien; among the 
passengers were Maj. Biddle, Mr. Talliaferro, 
and Lieut. Russel. 

Maj. S. II. Long, U. S. A., the same 3'ear, 
made his journey up the Mississippi by order 
of the Government to discover the sources of 
St. Peter's river. His ]);u-ty left Phila<lelpliia 
for Fort Dearborn, Chicago, and thence by land 
northwest through Illinois and wliat is now the 
southwestern counties of Wisconsin to Prairie 
du Chien, where they arrived on June 20 — found 
Col. Morgan in command. The route taken 
from Fort Dearborn is believed to be the first 

* It was at this spot. 137 years ago, that .Marquette and M. 
Joliet. coming fnun the lakes, discovered the Mi,«sissippi. 

+ Now the site of Ca.'<sville. Grant Co., Wis. It is a post 
town, pleasantly sitnated.with a population of SOO. 



that ever was taken by the whites, the journey 
occupied nine days, traversing 228 miles. He 
says that there were about twenty dwellings 
witli a population of 150. The Fort, he says, is 
the rudest and most uncomfortable lie had ever 
seen. The site is low and unpleasant. He re 
fers to the ancient mounds in the vicinity which 
have been heretofore described. The party 
were here re-inforced, and proceeded up the 
river. There were but few Indians here at the 

Col. T. L. McKenney, one of the commission- 
ers to treat with the Indians at Butte des Morts, 
came up the Fox river and down the Wisconsin 
to Prairie du Chien, arriving at this place, Sep- 
tember '^, 1827. He says: "The buildings are 
old and in a state of decay, only two good 
houses, RoUette's and Judge Lockwood's, about 
100 decaying tenements, the picket fort stand- 
ing on the plain a little north of the village, 
[where the Dousman residence now(1884)stands] 
and quite a ruin." 




THE WAR OF 1812-15. 

Singularly enough, what is now Crawford 
county has been the theatre of stirring incidents 
in four wars: The Revolution, the War of 
1812-15, the Winnebago War, and the Black 
Hawk War. The data for what transpired here 
during the Revolution are exceedingly vague 
and shadowy excepting only that a detachment 
of soldiers came up the river to the " prairie," 
in 1780, and destroyed a warehouse and some 
fifty packs of furs belonging to British traders. 
That these soldiers were a detachment from 
George Rogers Clark's force at the Illinois 
towns seems altogether probable; nevertheless 
it must rest upon probability alone, as there is 
no positive evidence extant that such was the 
case. Dismissing thus summarily the Revolu- 
tion, we proceed to notice, in so far as Crawford 
county was concei'ned, 


On the 18th of June, 1812, the declaration of 
war against Great Britain was made by Con- 
gress. The protection of this part of our fron- 
tiers was considered of great importance to our- 
selves, as its possession was to the British. In 
the summer of 1814, the Government authori- 
ties at St. Louis fitted out a large keel-boat, 
made bullet proof, and sent it with what men 
could be spared, under command of Lieut. Per- 
kins, to occupy Prairie du Chien. The troops 
built a stockade ujion a mound, the present 
site of the Dousman residence. Its ])rovisions 
for defense consisted of four small iron cannon 
besides the small arms of the garrison. The 
provisions and ammunition remained on the boat 
for want of convenient accommodations in the 

fort. The British traders of Mackinaw finding 
their communication with tiie ^Mississippi inter- 
rupted, planned the capture of the post. A 
strong expedition was fitted out and jjlaced un- 
der command of Lieut. Col. William McKay, a 
member of the Northwest Fur Company, an en- 
terprising man and resolute officer. He was 
given two companies of militia, formed among 
the employees of the traders. One of these 
companies wa« commanded by Joseph Rolette, 
of Prairie du Chien. About eighteen re^jular 
troops, under Capt. Fchlman, were assigned to 
the command, and Col. Dickson furnished Mc- 
Kay a part of his Indian force, numbering 
about 200 Sioux and 100 Winnebago warriors, 
and at Green Bay he was joined by about thirty 
militia and 100 Menomonees and Chippewas. 
The force now numbered about 1.50 whites and 
400 Indians. Proceeding in boats up Fox river 
and down the Wisconsin, when within twenty- 
one miles of the prairie, Michael Brisbois and 
Augustin Grignon were dispatched in advance 
to procure information, and returned with the 
report that the garrison numbered about sixty. 
The invaders reached the vicinity of the fort, 
unperceived, about 10 o'clock Sunday morning, 
July 17, when its officers were upon the point 
of taking a ride into the country. 

As soon as the British and Indians were dis- 
covered, the citizens left their houses and 
retired, some to the stockade, but tlie majority 
to the country. Col. McKay made an impos- 
ing display of his forces, invested the fort 
above and below, and summoned it to sur- 
render. Lieut. Perkins promptly refused, where 



Tipon some forty of the Green Bay militia 
and Menomonees gained the island in front of 
the village and in the rear of the gun-boat, to 
annoy it while the besiegers opened on it from 
the land side with a brass six-pounder. One of 
these shots striking the boat, caused a leakage 
which, toward sundown, induced Capt. Yeiser, 
its commander, to swing her round and 
move down stream. The garrison called on 
her to stop, and, being unheeded, fired a shot to 
bring her round, but without effect. She es- 
caped down the river, igiiominiously leaving 
the garrison almost destitute of provisions and 
ammunition. Meanwhile, the besiegers directe 1 
an irregular tire of small arms against the fort, 
which was occasionally returned, but without 
effect on either side. The second day was 
spent by the besiegers in counselling,and doing 
some shooting at long range. That night 
some of the Indians commenced to mine from 
the bank of the river, but their progress toward 
the stockade was so slow that they soon gave it 
up. The third day passed as inactively as the 
second. The fourth day McKay prepared to 
fire the fort with hot shot, to be followed by 
an assault, when a white flag was raised, and 
two officers went out and agreed on a surrender 
of the post and stores, the garrison to retire un- 
molested down the river. The formal sur- 
render was made the next morning. Strict 
orders were given the Indians against molest- 
ing the disarmed garrison, and an attempt by 
one of the Sioux to strike a soldier, was 
promptly punished by a knock down from the 
war club of a chief. McKay had, however, 
some trouble in preventing the Indians, es- 
pecially the Winnebagoes, from plundering the 
settlers, who had by this time returned to their 
homes. After several days the prisoners were 
dispatclied down the river, escorted by a squad 
under charge of Michael Brisbois. The Mack- 
inaw forces then withdrew, leaving Capt. 
Pohlman in command of the stockade, which 
was named Fort McKay, and was garrisoned 
chiefly by militia, enrolled among the inhabi- 

tants of the village, until the following year, 
when, upon the ratification of peace, the British 
commander withdrew from the place. 

Such, in brief, is the history of the war as en- 
acted in what is now Crawford county. From 
it, only a general idea can be had of the many 
stirring events which transpired on the 
"prairie" during that war. Additional particu- 
lars are demanded at our hands, and we append, 
therefore, a recital of every event thought 
worthy of preservation. 

Concerning McKay's expedition, James H. 

Lock wood says: 

"At this time [Sept. 1S16] at Prairie du 
Chien the events of the War of 1812 in this 
quarter were fresh in the minds of every one. 
I learned that in the spring or summer of 1814, 
the United States government sent boats, made 
bullet proof, under a captain Yeiser, who was 
in command of the boats, and a company of 
United States troops, under Lieut. Perkins, 
to take and retain possession of Prairie du 
Chien. Perkins built a stockade on a large 
mound, on which Col. Dousman's house now 
stands, and Capt. Yeiser remained on board 
the boats where most of the ammunition 
and provisions were stored as there was no 
room for them within the stockade. 

"Soon after the breaking out of the war, 
when the American ofticers in garrison at 
Mackinaw, and the citizens of that place were 
yet ignorant of the commencement of hostilities, 
but apprehensive that war had been declared, 
some traders were dispatched to the old British 
post and settlement of St. Josephs, on the east- 
ern shore of Lake Michigan, for intelligence. 
As none of the traders returned, remaining 
absent so much longer than was deemed nec- 
essary, it naturally enough excited the sus- 
picions of the commanding oflicer and the 
principal citizens of Mackinaw. Under the 
circumstances, a council was held, at which it 
was determined that immediate information- 
must be had from St. Josephs, and the question 



then was, who could go there and not be sus- 
pected of being a spy. After looking around 
and finding none qualified to go, the late Michael 
Dousraan, of Mackinaw, said that he had an 
outfit in Lake Superior that ought, by that 
time, to be at St. Josephs, and he thought that 
he could go there and look after his properlj- 
without being suspected. Accordingly he vol- 
unteered his services, and late in the afternoon 
he left Mackinaw for St. Josephs in a canoe. 
About dark, at Goose island, fifteen miles 
from Mackinaw, he met the British troops on 
their way to that place, who took him prisonei', 
but released him on his parole that he would 
go back to Mackinaw, and not give the garrison 
any information of what he had seen, but col- 
lect the citizens together at the old still-house 
on the southern side of the island, where a 
guard would be immediately sent to protect 
them from the Indians. This promise Mr. 
Dousman faithfully performed, and was prob- 
ably the ciuse of saving many an innocent 
family from being brutally murdered by the 
savages. The British arrived, planted their 
cannon during the night, and in the morning 
sent in to the commanding ofticer a copy of the 
declaration of war, with a demand for him to 
surrender, which he complied with. 

"'JMie traders in the British interest, resorting 
to Mackinaw as the British headquarters of the 
northwest, learning of the American occujjation 
of Prairie du Cliien in 1814, and anticipating, 
that so long as this force should remain there, 
they would be cut off from the trade of Prairie 
du Chien, its dependencies, and the Sioux 
country, at once set on foot an expedition for 
the re-capture of that place. The British 
officers and traders accordingly fitted out an ex- 
jicdition under the command of Col McKay, of 
the Indian department, an old trader; and 
under him were, a sergeant of artillery with a 
brass six pounder, and three or four volunteer 
companies of the Canadian voyaf/etirs, com- 
manded by traders and officered by their clerks, 

all dressed in red coats, with probably 100 
Indians, officered by half breeds.* Having 
made a secret march they arrived on the prairie 
without being expected, and made the best dis- 
play of red coats and Indians that they could. 
They made a formidable show, and the Ameri- 
cans not knowing of what materials they were 
composed, and supposing they were all British 
regulars, appeared to have been panic-struck. 
The sergeant had brought his field piece so 
well to bear that lie hit one of the boats, I be- 
lieve the one Yeiser was in. During this time 
the troops and Indians had made a move to- 
wards the fort, but keeping out of gun shot. 
On the boat being hit, Capt. Yeiser had the 
cable cut, and swung round down the river, 
ordering the others to do the same, carrying 
with them the provisions and ammunition of 
the garrison. After the boats had gone, Col. 
McKay summoned the fort to surrender, and 
having neither provisions nor ammunition they 
had no otheralternative, and accordingly sur- 
rendered. The British took and kept posses- 
sion of Prairie du Chien until ]>cace, in 1815, 
thus opening the Indian trade to the traders at 
Mackinaw. The inhabitants of Prairie du 
C'hien being British subjects, were ordered into 
service by the British government to do duty 
in the garrison during the war. The British 
sergeant of artillery for hitting the keel-boat, 
was promoted by his government." 

grignon's rkcoi.i.ections. 
Col. McKay came with his force in boats to 
Green Bay, where he tarried awhile to increase 
his numbers, and make all necessary prepara- 
tions. A company of the Green Bay militia, of 
about thirty persons, and many of them old 
men unfit for service, was raised; of which 
Pierre Grignon was the captain, and Peter 
Powell and myself (Augustus Grignon,) the 
lieutenants. At the bay, James J. Porlier, a 
youth of some eighteen years, and son ' of 

•There werp at lenst l.(K)0 Indinns under Col, McKay, as 
stated in the iiccouiits of the time, and not legs than three 
pieces of light artillery. 



Jacques Porlier, was commissioned a lieutenant 
in the rea;ulars, and joined Polilman's company.* 

Here about .seventy-five Menoraonees, under 
Ma-clia-nah, or the Hairy Hand; I-om-e-tah, 
Kish-kon-nau-kau-hom, or the Cutting off; and 
Tamah's son, Mau-kau-tau-kee, and a party of 
about twenty-five Chippewas, mixed with the 
Menomonees, joined the expedition. Our entire 
force now consisted of 400 Indians and 150 
whites — such was the understanding at the 
time; if the newspapers of that day represented 
it much larger, it was for effect on the pirt of 
the British to impress the Americans with an 
idea of their great strength in the northwest; 
and on the part of the Americans, in palliation 
of their loss at Prairie du Chien. 

At length the expedition moved forward up 
Fox river, the whites in six boats or barges and 
the Indians in canoes, and carrying their craft 
over the Portage, they descended the Wiscon- 
sin. Reaching the old, deserted Fox village, on 
the Wisconsin, twenty-one miles from Prairie 
du Chien, the force stopped, while Michael 
Brisbois, myself, a Sioux and a Winnebago In- 
dian were dispatched to Prairie du Chien in 
the night to obtain a citizen and bring him to 
Col. McKay, from whom to obtain intelligence. 
Descending the river to where the ferry has 
since been located, some five or six miles from 
Prairie du Chien, we went thence across by land 
and reached the place without difiiculty. We 
saw the sentinel on duty at the fort. We went 
to Antoine Brisbois, the uncle of Michael 
Brisbois, of one party, who lived three miles 
above the town, and took him to where we left 
our canoe at the ferry place, then called Petit 
Gris. There we awaited the arrival of Col. 
McKay and his force and they made their ap- 
pearance the next morning, when the sun was 
about an iiour iiigh. Antoine Brisbois reported 
the American strength in the garrison at sixty. 

*This was the only military service of J. J. Porlier, who re- 
moiuetl with his company all winter: and the next year, 
when peace was proclaimed, Capt. Pohlman evacuated Fort 
McKay at Prairie du Chien, and returned with his company 
to Mackinaw. Porlier then left the service, enj^aged in trade 
at Green Bay, raised a family and died at Grand Kau-kau- 
Jin in 1838, 

We then continued down to the mouth of 
the Wisconsin, and thence up almost to Prairie 
du Chien through a channel or bayou between a 
continuous number of islands imd the Missis- 
sippi. We reached the town about 10 o'clock 
unperceived. As this was Sunday and a very 
pleasant day the officers of the garrison were 
getting ready to take a pleasure ride into the 
country, and liad McKay been an hour or two 
later, the garrison would have been caught 
without an officer.* 

Nicholas Boilvin had directed a man named 
Sandy to go out and drive up his cattle, as he 
wished to kill a heifer that day, and have some 
fresh meat. Sandy went out and soon discov- 
ered the British approaching, and knew from 
the red coats worn by the regulars and Capts. 
Rolette and Anderson, for none of the rest had 
any, and the dozen British flags displayed by 
the Indians, that it was a British force. Sandy 
returned cooly to Boilvin and said there wei'e 
"lots of red cattle" at such a place, and invited 
him to go with him and see. Boilvin went and 
scarcely crediting his own eyes, asked earnestly 
"What is that?" "Why, it is the British!" re- 
plied Smdy; when Boilvin, who was the 
American Indian agent at Prairie du Chien,* 
hastened to h s house and C'H veyed his family 
and valuables 'o the gun-boat for safety. All 
the citizens now left their houses and fleil from 
the impending danger, some to the fort, but 
mostly to the country. 

* Joseph Crelee, of Portage, was then an inhabitant of 
Prairie du Chien and oorroliorates Mr. Grignon in this part 
of his narrative: stating-, without knowing that Mr. Griguon 
had done the same, that the English made their appearance 
on Sunday, and that he, C'relec, had loaned his horse and 
wagon to one of the olficcrs,who were generally preparing to 
go a riding into thecountrv: and that if Col. McKay had 
l)een an hour later there would not have been an American 
otticer in the garrison. Upon the alarm being given, Crelee, 
with many others, tied to the fort, and he shaied in the de- 
fense until the surrender. It may further be added that the 
newspapers of that day state that Col. McKay made his ap- 
pearance at Prairie du Chien on the ITth of .luly, 1SI4, and 
the 17th of July in that year occurred on Sunday. 

* Boilvin's father, during the Keyolutionary War re- 
sided at Quebec, and was there very kind and humane to a 
wounded American surgeon, who had been taken prisoner; 
and when exchanged, the elder Boilvin gave him money to 
carr.v him home. After the war, Nicholas Boilvin came west 
as an Indian trader, and did not succeed; and fortunately 
meeting the old surgeon at St. Louis, whom his father had 
befriended, the surgeon succeeded in getting Boilvin ap- 
pointed Indian agent. 



Upon arriving at the town, making a very 
formidable display for that quiet place Rolette 
and Anderson, with their companies, the Sioux 
and Winnebago Indians, were directed to take 
post above the fort, while Col. McKay himself, 
with the Green Bay company, the regulars, the 
Menomonees and Chi]>pewas, encompassed it 
below. A flag was sent in, borne by Capt. 
Thomas Andenson, demanding the surrender of 
the garrison, with which demand Lieut. Per- 
kins, the commandant of the post, promptly 
declined to comply. The six-pounder, under 
the management of the regulars, was now 
brought to bear on the gun-boat of the Ameri- 
cans; the first shot, however, fired by the six- 
l)ounder, was a blank charge, intended as a sort 
of war-flourish or bravado. But our men did 
not take a very near position; I should say they 
were lialf a mile from the gun-boat, if not 
more, and hence the firing upon the boat by the 
cannon, and the firing by guns or cannon from 
the boat, was generally iiiefFictnal. When the 
firing first commenced on the gun-boat, Capt. 
Grignon, with a part of his company and sev- 
eral iNIenomonees, some thirty or forty alto- 
gether, were directed to cross the river in two 
boats, and take a position on land so as to 
annoy and aid to drive oif tie gun-boat, the po- 
sition of which was at first near the middle of 
the stream, but when fired upon, had moved 
over nearer the western shore. During the 
day the gun-boat was at least once or twice 
struck by the balls of the six-pounder, and 
caused a bad leakage, whicli, when the sun was 
about half an hour high, induced its com- 
m.inder to move down stream. Seeing this 
movement, the Americans in the fort called out 
to them not to go off; but this being unheeded, 
they fired their cannon at the boat to stop it. 
Meanwhile Capt. Grignon and his party over 
the river* had been annoying the boat. As the 

* The newspapers of that ilay. aiirl McAfee's ITietory of the 
War iti tile WcstiM'ii Country, unite in statin? tliat tliis party 
bad taken position on an island opposite to Prairie dti 
Chien. eovered with timber, whieh served to screen them 
from the shots of the gun-boat. This appears (|Uitc prob- 

boat passed down the river, one six-pounder 
was made three times to hit her, twice on the 
side :ind once in the stern, but it soon got be- 
yond our reach. Had we manned some of our 
boats and pursued, we could undoulitedly have 
taken it, as we afterward learned that it leaked 
so b.adly that the Americans had to stop at the 
nioutli of the Wisconsin and repair it. The 
only injury the firing of the gun-boat did was a 
ball, before noon, striking a fence post, some of 
the slivers of which inflicted a flesh wound in the 
thigh of one of the Menomonees. 

While this contest was progressing with the 
gun-boat, McKay's party of whites and Indians, 
on all sides of the fort, kept up an irregular 
firing of small arms, which, from their great 
distance from the fort, was harmless; and thus 
if they did no harm, they were out of the way 
of receiving any in turn. At length towards 
noon, Col. McKay ordered his men to advance 
over the Marais St. Freol, a swampy spot, and 
lake position much nearer the fort — not more 
ihan a quarter of a mile distant. This was 
obeyed by those on the lower side of the fort, 
vho had a sufliciency of houses to shield them 
from the guns of the garrison. From this new 
position, the firing was somewhat increased; but 
the men under Rolette and Anderson, with 
the Sioux and Winnebagoes, on the upper side 
of the fort, kept at a safe distance, fully hal/ a 
mile off, but they reallj' needed no protection 
at that distance against small arms. In tlie 
fort were four iron cannon, somewhat larger 
than six-pounders, and these were occasionally 
fired.* Whenever Capt. Rolette would see the 
flash of the cannon, he would give the rather 
unmilitary order of "Down, my men, down!" 
A couple of Winnebagoes discovering that 
there were some hams in a house, which had 
been deserted, and to which they could not 
gain an entrance, mounted upon the roof, in- 
tending to tear off some shingles, when they 

♦Probably there was not much ammunition in the fort, and 
they wished to he sparlnir of it, for closer action, if it 
sho'uld como to that; for it has been slated, that thetrun-boat 
contained the maKa/.inc of powder, ami that had departed. 




were espied from the fort, and each wounded in 
the thigh, when they quiclily retreated from 
their exposed situation. 

The second day the men and Indians amused 
themselves with some long shooting, but Col. 
McKay and his officers spent the day in conn- 
gelling as to the best course of procedure. It 
was pretty much resolved to make an assault, 
and towards evening assembled the leading 
Indian chiefs, and laid the plan of an assault be- 
fore them, when the Winnebago chief Sar-cel, 
or The Teal, remarked that he and his people 
remembered too well taking part with the Sha- 
wanoes in assaulting an American fort, and 
were beaten back with terrible slaughter, — 
probably alluding to the attack on Fort Re- 
covery,* in Wayne's Indian war in 1793, — and 
they would not like to resort to so hazardous 
an experiment; but proposed a better and safer 
way — to spring a mine from the river bank and 
blow up the garrison. Col. McKay did not 
waste words unnecessarily, but simply replied, 
"Go at it." Teal and his Winnebogoes spent a 
part of the evening digging but found their 
progress in undermining was slow, and after 
penetrating a dozen or fifteen feet, they gave it 
up as a bad job. As the fort was several hun- 
dred feet from the river bank, it would have 
been an interminable operation for the Indians 
to have attempted to prosecute their scheme to 

Nothing of moment occurred the third day, — 
as usual some little firing was done. Col. 
McKay sent into the country about three miles 
for a load of straw, which was made up into 
small bundles to have in readiness to place in 
the darkness of night, with kegs of powder near 
the fort, and fire a train of straw leading to the 
powder, and thus make a breach in the enclos- 
ure. But this was only designed as a dernier 
resort. During this day or the preceding one, 

♦ Pe-sheu, or the Wild Cat, and Sar-cel, once got into a 
wrangle in which their bravery was called in question, when 
Pe-sheu put a clincher by saying to Sar-cel, "Don't you re- 
member the time we aided the Shawanoes in attacking the 
fort, that you ran o£f so fast that you lost your breech- 

a Fox Indian received a spent ball which 
lodged between his scalp and skull; it was cut 
out, and the wound was so slight as to prove no 
obstacle to his sharing in the further events of 
the siege. 

The fourth day Col. McKay resolved to ac- 
complish something more decisive. About 
3 o'clock in the afternoon, with his troops 
properly stationed, and cannon balls heated red 
hot in a blacksmith's forge, I was sent to go 
round and specially direct the interpreters to 
order the Indians not to fire on the fort till the 
cannon should commence playing the hot shot, 
and the fort should be set on fire; then to use 
their muskets as briskly as possible. Scarcely 
had these directions been given, when the 
Americans, probably seeing from indications 
that a severe assault of some kind was about to 
be made, raised the white flag. Two officers 
now came out and met Col. McKay — strict or- 
ders having been given to the Indians not to 
fire on these Americans, on the pain of being 
themselves fired on by the British troops. 
The result wns, a surrender was agreed on; Col. 
McKay should have possession of the fort and 
public stores, and the Americans be permitted 
to retire unmolested in boats down the river. 
By this time it was too late to go through with 
a formal surrender, which was postponed till 
the next morning. 

A little before the appointed time to give up 
their arms, one of the Winnebagoes seeing a sol- 
dier in the fort, made a motion to him to shake 
hands; the soldier reached his hand through a 
port-hole, when the Winnebago seized it and 
cut off one of his fingers, and ran off with his 
singular trophy. As Lieut. Perkins and his 
men marched out from the fort to lay down 
their arms, a Sioux warrior attempted to strike 
one of the soldiers, when a chief, a son-in-law of 
Wau-ba-sha V, knocked down his treacherous 
countryman with his war-club. Col. McKay 
had given such strict orders to the Indians 
against raassacreing or molesting the Americans, 
and to the regulars and militia to keep the In- 



dians in awe, that nothing more, so far as I 
know, transpired, tliat had the least appearance 
of treachery on the part of the Indians. 

When the American flag was hauled down. 
Col. McKay was the first to observe the singular 
fact, that though it was completely riddled else- 
where with balls, the representation of the 
American eagle was untouched. The Indians, 
during the whole four days had directed many 
shots at the flag and had shot off one of the 
cords, which let the banner part way down the 
flag staff, and there it remained till the surren- 
der. The flag staff was planted near the center 
of the fort. 

Several days elapsed before arrangements 
were completed by which to send the prisoners 
down the river. When they took their depart- 
ure, they escorted Michael Brisbois, with a 
suitable guai'd, but I do not know how large a 
guard, as I h i<l [ireviously left. I understood 
C'ol. McKay gave the Americans their arms as 
they started down the river; bui I have no 
knowledge of llicir Vx'ing followed by the In- 

Capt. Pohlmin, with his regulars, reni.iiiied 
in command, with the two Mackinaw conipaiiu > 
under Cipt. Anderson and Lieut. Duncan Gra- 
ham, wiio was now promoted to the ca])taincy 
of his company, as Capt. Rolette had bee^i sent 
with dispatches to Mackinaw immediately after 
the surrender. 

McKay had much difliculty in managing his 
Sioux and Winnebago allies, particularly the 
latter. At the first investment of the place, 
when these Indians were placed with the Mack- 
inaw militia above the fort, they had in the most 
wanton manner, sIkU down a number of horses 
and cattle belonging to the citizens, much to the 
regret and ve.\ation of the British commander; 
and after tiie surrender, the Winnebagoes 
swarmetl arouiul among the settlers, to openly 
plunder them of anything they might desire; 
and McKay was under the necessity of threat- 
ening to turn his troops against them, if they 
did not instantly desist, and go off home. The 

Indians once off. Col. McKay, the Green Bay 
troops, Menomonees and Chippewas took their 

Capt. Rolette at length with his boat liove 
in sight of Mackinaw. Large numbers thronged 
the shore, anxiously waiting to learn the^ti- 
dings from Prairie du Chien. '•Capt.;_Rolette, 
what is the news?" "A great battle — a sanguin- 
ary contest," responded Rolette, with an air of 
great solemnity and importance. "How many 
were killed?" "Nh7ie/" "How many wounded?" 
^^None/" "What a bloody contesti" vociferously 
shouted the crowd, as they «scorled the hero 
from the boat to the garrison. 

Capt. Pohlman continued in command at Prai- 
rie du Chien till after the peace, which ensued 
the following year, when the fort was evacuated. 
I may mention one incident of the winter after 
my departure. A couple ot Frenchmen, named 
Dubois and Chaupanie, the former a half-breed 
Sioux, and brother-in-law of ('apt. Rolette, were 
sent to a Sioux camp to obtain some venison for 
Rolette. While at the camp, a Sioux Indian 
demanded first, a gun, and then some ammiini- 
inii, which being refused, he concluded to ac. 
company them on their return to Capt. Rolette, 
siying that Rolette would let him have what lie 
wanted. While the two men were asleep before 
their camp-fire in the night, the Sioux, wlio lay 
on the opposite side of the fire, got up, took the 
only gun, and shot them both at the same dis- 
charge, killing Chau])anio on the spat, and mor- 
tally wounding the other. The Indian now ran 
off, and Dubois, though distant a day's journey, 
reached Prairie du Chien, and died sliortly afier. 
The Sioux chief of that band was taken and de- 
tained till the murderer was broiyifht in, who 
was tried and shot. He was a bad Indian, and 
was much feared by his own people. 

Of Col. McKay, I can only state in addition, 
that after the war he retired to Montreal, 
where he long since ended his daj-s. He was a 
fine looking, tall, well i)roportioned man, but 
was regarded as strict, and sometimes severe 
over those in his em])loy in the Indian trade. 



I knew Col. Robert Dickson from his first com- 
ing from England, as I think, and engaging in 
the Indian trade. He commenced his career as 
a trader about the year 1790, and traded princi- 
pally with the Sioux, and continued till the war ; 
after the war he did not renew the business. 
He was very humane to American prisoners 
during the war, rescuing many from the Indians; 
and in after years he several times received let- 
ters from such, enclosing, presents of money, as 
tokens of their gratitude. He was a large man, 
of full face, tall and commanding. He had a 
Sioux wife and four children. 

Anderson's journal, 1814.* 
Wednesday, August 10, 1814.— Col. McKay 
set off at 10 o'clock in the morning; would 
not allow any guns to be fired. In the after- 
noon a few Renards (Foxes) arrived from the 
Riviere au D'Inde, and brought word that they 
had seen the two barges that had went adrift 
from this place. The Tonnerre Noir, or Black 
Thundei', a Yankee Indian passed on his way 
above, unperceived. 

Thursday, August 11. — Gave out some few 
articles of goods to the Michigan Volunteers, 
by Col. McKay's orders previous to leaving. 
Gave out twelve carrots of tobacco to be dis- 
tributed among the troops in general. Tliis 
was done because it is customary to allow the 
people of this place to smoke as a preventive 
to sickness. The want of provisions obliges 
me to give every assistance to the farmers to get 
in their grain as fast as possible. I, therefore, 
allow all the volunteers that are not on duty, 
to go and work for them in the day-time. Em- 
ployed the sergeant of artillery men, with some 
of the Michigans, in making leaden three-pound 
balls. Appointed a patrol to go about at night 
in order to detect stragglers, if any such per- 
sons should be found, that they may give an 
account of themselves. 

* ' 'Journal of the Proceedings at Fort McKay from the 
Beparture of Lieut. Col. McKay, for Mackinaw, compre- 
hending the particulars of every occurring- circumstance in 
and out of the Fort, within the vicinity of Prairie du Chien." 
By Capt.T. G Anderson. 

Friday, August 12. — Sent off twelve men 
with an interpreter, and two Indians for the 
barges that drifted away from this place. One 
of the volunteers by the name of Aslin, hav- 
ing refused to go on fatigue, and having ab- 
sented himself without leave, I put in close 
confinement, and allow him one and one half 
pounds of bread, and two quarts of water per 
day, till further orders. At 3 in the after- 
noon, eight canoes of Renards came, and landed 
at the entrance of the Marais, a little below the 
Prairie. From there the chief with another 
came up and asked leave to offer some scalps 
they had brought. I gave them leave, and they 
returned for their canoes. This being the 
Prince Regent's birthday, put off jiracticiug at 
the cannon till to-morrow. The small store of 
powder we have here, prevented our firing the 
customary salute on this day. At 4, the 
canoes arrived, and asked to speak with me. I 
told the Indians to repair to the house lately 
belonging to Mr. Boilvin. The head man, not 
a chief, got up and gave me his hand, saying : 
"My father, we are ashamed-to present you with 
these scalps (holding four scalps in his hand,) 
because we did not kill them ourselves ; but got 
three of them from our friends, the Sauks, and 
one we picked up on our way here — a man, that 
we supposed your guns had killed, in the gun- 
boat where you fought ; he was lying on a sand 
bank." Then presenting me with a few articles 
of American clothing, said : "We give you 
these things, to wish you a good day, as they 
came from the enemy, hoping you will give us 
Kome assistance." Another Indian rising and 
showing me his leather breech-cloth : " Mv 
father, I beg of you some little assistance ; you 
see iiow miserable I am off, being obliged to 
wear a leather petticoat." 

To these requests I gave the following an- 
swer : "I am happy to see you, but am much 
chagrined that I have not a mouthful of provis- 
ions to give you. As Tor powder, toliacco, and 
goods, you need not speak of these articles, for 
your father" (alluding to C'ol. McKay,) "after 



the battle of the Rapids, and previous to liis 
departure gave to the Sauks and Renards twenty 
kegs of gunpowder and fourteen bales of goods 
to be distributed among sucb Indians of these 
Nations as we knew to be good subjects, and 
must support. But in the space of twenty or 
twenty-five days there will be a strong re-in- 
forcement of troops here, and plenty of amnui- 
nition and other goods. Those Indians that 
merit support, will have it amply ; but those 
that are attached to the Americans, as many of 
the Renards are, will be treated as we treat bad 

At half past 4 o'clock Lieut. Urisbois arrived, 
having been below the rapids of the Riviere des 
Moines, with theprison"rs. He brought nothing 
new. At sun-down the fatigu;- party I sent for 
the barges arrived, with the two barges, having 
received no injury. 

Saturday, August 13, 1 p. m. — A Sioux canoe 
arrived from above, bringing word that Feuille's 
band, in diiuking their rum, fought much, but 
witliout anus, among themselves. They were 
about to'kill the Aile Rouge, or Red Wing, 
but he ran away. At 4, the Renards, that gave 
me four scalps yesterday, assembled, and re- 
quested of me to return them the scalps, ob- 
serving that they were the enemies' scalps that 
we had killed with our little cannon ; but that 
I did not want such trophies, as we never took 
off the scalps of our enemies. Speaking of their 
loyalty, I answered them that it was not possi- 
ble to depend upon their Nation in general ; 
that I knew that there were some good subjects 
among them, but many bad ones. That when 
they saw Robert Dickson, how they came and 
cried to him for support ; and as soon as their 
English Father was fond of his children he 
always assisted them ; but their jnisfortune 
was, that as soon as his back was turned, and 
they saw the Americans, some among them im- 
mediately raised their war clubs over our heads. 
I am sorry to speak to you in this way, but 
necessity requires it, as I do not know the good 
from the bad. When your English Father 

speaks to his well-known good children, he 
does it with an open hand and heart ; but when 
lie knows he speaks to bad subjects, he does it 
with an arm in his hand. But the time is 
drawing near when a fire will be kindled, as in 
a meadow where there are stout trees. The 
bad hay will be burned down, and the fire will 
protect the stout trees and leave them to grow 
without being annoyed. 

Sunday, August l'^ 12 o'oclock. — Went out 
to the farms to inquire about mills, in order to 
get some fiour made immediately. The mills 
are in bad order, but they will get them re- 
paired ; and as soon as the harvest gets in they 
will begin to grind the wheat. At 3, returned 
and found two of the Michigans drunk. They 
had stolen rum out of a keg that had been 
issued for a party going for a gun-boat of the 
enemy, being a little above Fort Madison. 
AVhen I arrived they were lying drunk. I 
ordered them into the guard-house. They were 
very insolent to the sergeant, and in fact 
rushed out of the block-house where they were 
confined, havi)ig no sentry over them, and be- 
haved with violence, taking up clubs to defend 
themselves from the guard, when I ordered 
them a second time to be kept close. Having 
only one pair of fetters, I had them put on to 
one of them ; the other I had tied. 

Monday, August 15. — At 9, seven canoes, 
Renards from the Riviere au D'Inde, arrived. 
Having received a letter in French, from Capt. 
Grignon, on the 12th inst., the difficulty of de- 
ciphering it prevented my inserting till to-day, 
as follows : 

Fort McKay, Aug. 12, 1814. 
C.M'r. T. G. Anderson, Com'g Fort McKay : 

Sir — I beg you to take into consideration the 
request which 1 made of Lieut. Col. McKay, 
which lie accepted. As I do not intend to act 
in anything that would be disagreeable to you; 
and knowing your intelligence, I hope that you 
will take everything into consideration. My 
only object is to prove as much as my feeble 
knowledge permits, to submit my views of pub- 



lie matters, which are founded upon truth, and 
which are of the greatest importance to make 
known, and should be understood everywhere, 
being interested for the service of His Majesty, 

1. The provisions which are absolutely in- 
dispensable, and which it would be a failure 
not to recognize [are wanting]. You know that 
the inhabitants of Green Bay are without help 
for their harvest, and that it is impossible for 
them to gather their crops without assistance. 
A mill there stands idle for lack of workmen. 
It is important for them to be provided with 
flour, unless affairs at Mackinaw should permit 
the furnishing an immediate supply, or I should 
not be allowed to return home (the people 
there must suffer). 

It would be possible to send the powder you 
need, from that place ; I myself could furnish 
250 pounds. Here you need to be provided 
with the munitions of war ; you have not 
enough for the force you have, and what is the 
need of us (xreen Bay people here "? Without 
additional supplies you will be unable to defend 
the place ; it is like a body without a soul. If 
permitted to return to the bay, and you should 
have information of the approach of the enemy, 
I think that, receiving notice, I could come to 
your assistance as soon as the (Indian) 
nearest here ; and the Nations of Fox river 
would come more promptly with me than by 
sending a message to them, which would only 
be met by procrastination, as usual. 

2. The provisions which arc being consumed 
here by so many, it would be better, in my 
opinion, to husband in part, for another time 
(when the enemy should threaten and re-in- 
forcements should be needed). It is costly to 
transport supplies for so many men from Mack- 
inaw. As there are not sufficient munitions for 
those here, it has been my intention to obtain 
leave to go to the Illinois with some volunteers. 
I have tried to raise the Sacs and Foxes, in 
order to embroil them with the enemy. Such 
were the intentions of your servant, and more. 

I need say nothing further. I hope for a 
furlough, and not transportation, as early as 
possible, with a letter of recommendation to 
the commander at Mackinaw, if agreeable to 
you to grant it. 

I am, sir, etc., etc., 

Pierre GRiGNoy, Capt. 

My answer was as follows: 

Fort McKay, August 15, 1814. 
Captain Grignon: 

Sir. — In answer to your letter of the r2th inst. 
I have to say that as to the request you say you 
made of Col. McKay, I know nothing about it. 
Summing up the contents of your letter, I find 
you want permission to return home, a request 
I cannot take upon myself to grant, for two 
reasons: first, that it was optional with you, 
previous to the colonel's departure, to remain 
here, or return to your home; secondly, you are 
on the list with those to do garrison duty here 
till the re-inforcement arrives from Mackinaw. 
As to provision, the less said on this subject 
the better. The object of our coming here was 
to make use of our arms, etc. 

As to your good intentions, and wish to go 
and burn St. Louis,* I conceive it to be out of 
tlie question to harbor any such idea, with any 
number of the Indians, and perhaps forty or 
fifty volunteers that you with difficulty could 
muster. Attacking and totally destroying so 
formidable a place as that, is in my opinion, 
absurd. I am much obliged to you for your 
offer of powder, and am sorry it is out of reach. 
Having answered the principal subjects of your 
letter, I am sir, your liumble servant, 

Thos. G. Anderson, Capt. Comd'g. 

At 10, Lieut. Graham went off to try and get 
the gun-boat, as mentioned in yesterday's or- 
ders. At 6 p. M. a violent thunder storm, with 
rain and much lightning. The firmament was 
as if in a continual blaze, from 7 till 10. 

Tuesday, August 16th. — At 10 called up the 
Michigans that were confined on Sunday. When 

*A8 this intention does not appear in Capt. Grignon'e 
letter, it must have been derived from verbal expressions. 



they proved that they got the rum, with which 
they got drunk ou Sunday, from one of the vol- 
unteers, I sent for him , liberated the two Mioh- 
igaiis, and put him in their place. The Miclii- 
gans deserved, perhaps, to be more rigorously 
punished; but their corps being my principal 
support, would not admit of my being too 
strict with them for the present. At 5, a canoe 
of Puants arrived from their village on the 
Ouisconsin. Kept a party at work making 
swivel bullets. Finished covering the house. 
At half past 8 the volunteer in the guard house 
was on the point of, and threatening to break 
out, when I ordered him to be put in irons. 

\Yednesday, August iVth. — Got the artificers 
at work widening the passage through the fort, 
but could not complete it entirely. At 9 p. m. 
the Feuille, or Leaf, arrived with five of his 
young men. He ha-l heard by the Renards 
that the Americans were coming up, and that 
cannon had been lieard tiring below the Rock 
river lately, and that a barge had arrived from 
Mackinaw. The report )( the tiring of the can- 
non we knew to be false. Lieut. Brisbois lias 
just come from there, and if a barge had arrived 
from Mackinaw, no doubt we would have had 
letters from there. Those vagabonds made this 
news in hopes to make themselves pass for 
friendly Indians. 

Thursday, August 18th. — At 10 the Feuille 
came to the fort, when I told him the talk I had 
held with the Renards, the whole of which, he 
agreed, was perfectly right. I gave him the 
four scalps I got from the Renards. He 
told me, that in the course of a few days, he 
would send down to hoar the news, and after 
that, he would come down himself with the 
men of his band to wait the arrival and com- 
mand of his father, Robert Dickson. I gave 
him a few loaves of bread, and he went off. 
At 2 o'clock this morning, John Campbell, of 
the volunteers, having repeatedly refused to do 
duty, I sent the corporal of the guard with two 
men, and brought him up. In (juestioning him 
and asking him his reasons for his not attend- 

ing, he said he would not mount guard as long 
as he could get work to gain anything by. I 
told him he had better do his turn of duty with 
the others. He immediately mounted his high 
horse, and began to talk in a high tone, when 
I commanded him to be silent. He became in- 
solent, and told me he did not care a d — n 
for me. I ordered him to the guard house. 
Kennet, who was put in irons on Tuesday, con- 
tinues in the guard-house with his irons on him; 
is very abusive, and threatens every person in 
the garrison without exception. The fort door, 
and well completed. 

Friday, August 1 9th. — The ofiicers, etc., took 
two lessons at the gun, and got on very well. 
Let John Campbell out of the guard-house. A 
heavy shower in the morning. Got word that 
the Renards above had found the Indian that 
got drowned while going up with the Little 
Corbeau. They say he had his feet tied togeth- 
er. Got the carpenter to work making a scaf- 
fold, on which for a sentry to stand high, and 
see over the pickets. One of the swivels well 
mounted, and in the blacksmith's hands, to be 
bound, and ironed completely. Gave out a 
second to be mounted. 

Saturday, August 20th. — At 6, practiced at 
the gun till a quarter past 8. Went around 
to arrange with the farmers for flour. They 
will begin to thrash out their wheat on Monday. 
I promised them every- assistance. At 10, the 
.Michigans were drilled. At 2 p. m., gijt the 
other three-pounder mounted, and went out in 
brigade at 4 o'clock, practicing sham fighting 
till 6, when we returned to the fort. At half 
])ast .3 P. M., three young Renards arrived 
with a pipe, they say, from the Sauks, who send 
me word that the Americans were on their way 
up here in barges. They say they do not deceive 
me, three different couriers having seen the 
barges above the Cap au Gris ten days ago. The 
Sauks request me to go down to the rapids with 
all the forces here, and meet the enemy there, 
and at the same time take them ammunition and 
guns. I told them I could give them an answer 



in the morning, as they told me this news at 
7 o'clock in the evening. I cannot put faith in 
this report. The couriers cannot inform me the 
number of the enemy's barges, nor can they tell 
me the number of young Sauks that brought the 
pipe to the Renarcl village. They ask for am- 
munition and guns, two articles they have been 
repeatedly told that we have none; and Col. 
McKay, when he gave the Epervier Noir, or 
Black Sparrow Hawk, the last present, told him 
positively he need not expect any further supply 
of powder till tlie ro-inforcement came out. All 
these circumstances considered, I conceived it to 
be a made up story of the Renards and Aile 
Rouges or Red Wings, to get us away from 
this, perhaps to destroy the place, or else to get 
us, as they suppose, into their power below this, 
and, as in such a case we would not suspect 
them, to get us into a council, and then do our 
business. Be this as it may, I treat the couriers 
well, and do not give the smallest idea that I 
doubt the truth of their report. On the contrary, 
I will encourage them to be on the lookout, etc. 
If there is any truth in their assertions, we shall 
know it in the course of three or four days by 
Lieut. CTraham. The enemy will not reach this 
point, if the report is true, before twenty days. 

Sunday, August 21st. — Answer to the young 
Renards that brought the pipe, and news of the 
approach of the Americans: "You will tell tlie 
Sauks, that I thank them for having sent a pipe 
as a token of the certainty of the enemy's ap- 
proach. I also thank you for having been so 
expeditious in bringing the news here. You 
will tell the Sauks thatmy orders will not admit 
of my leaving this place for the present, having 
been left here to defend the post. At any rate, 
knowing that there are a number of bad Indians 
both above and below me, I fear were they to 
find that 1 had left the village unguarded, they 
might come and insult and destroy the inhabi- 
tants of the place." 

I was careful to prevent their learning that 
we had only one half barrel of tiour on hand. 
As to ammunition and guns, I sent word to the 

Sauks, that they well knew I had none to spare, 
having on hand only what would be necessary 
for twenty days in case of an attack, — this was 
designed, in case the Sauks should give infor- 
mation to the enemy, to make them believe that 
we are not short of supplies. The Sauks, Ren- 
ards, etc., ought to be well supplied, having got, 
previous to Col. McKay's leaving here, twenty 
kegs of gunpowder, and having taken a number 
of guns from the enemy, they are well enabled 
to stand a strong attack. 

I advised the Indians below "to keep a good 
look out, and not allow tlicmselves to be sur- 
prised, and in case the Americans should come 
on horseback, as you say, try and decoy them 
into the bush, and surround them. Men on 
horseback, in a thick bush, cannot do much; 
and in case they get past your village in 
barges, follow them up here, with a party on 
each side of the river, and annoy them if they 
debark to camp, to get wood, or otherwise ; and 
by the time they reach here, I will have a strong 
re-inforceraent of Indians. Before they can 
reach here, the re-inforcement will perhaps be 
out from Mackinaw, when you, our Sauk friends, 
will be all well sup[ilied with ammunition and 
everything else. 

" I am very sorry I cannot take upon myself 
to furnish the Sauks with any more ammuni- 
tion ; but let them t.ake courage, and act as 
bravely as they did when they drove back the 
American gun-boats, and they may depend upon 
amjile support, perhaps more than they can pos- 
sibly expect, when the re-inforcement comes out. 
When Black Hawk and the Sauk chiefs send 
expresses in the future, send people that can 
give the particulars of anything that is going 
on, and not young men that can give no infor- 
mation at all. The young men that b]-ouglit me 
the pipe could neither tell me where the enemy 
were seen, their number of boats, nor anything 
more than merely they were coming. The pipe, 
you say, the Sauks sent to be left with me. I 
will keep it as a token of their good intentions, 



and will deliver it to their father, the Red 
Head,* as soon as he arrives." 

At 1-2, the Sauk chief, Thomas, arrived. 
Two canoes having left the village previous to 
the arrival of this news there, he could give nie 
no further assurance. He met Lieut. Graham 
within a few miles of the Rock river, and says 
he will be back here to-morrow or next day. 

Monday, August 2-2d. — At 6 in the morning, 
it began to rain hard, and thundered a good 
deal. Rainy weather all day. At 8 in the 
evening a Sioux canoe arrived with one man 
and three women ; nothing new. Issued thirty- 
seven pairs Indian shoes to the volunteers, and 
drilled the people. 

Tuesday, August 23d. — Got a number of men 
threshing wheat. At 7 in the evening, Lieut. 
Graham arrived bringing Indian news, that the 
Americans were coming up. Nothing certain 
as to their force, or where they were seen. On 
the 201 li, while Lieut. Graham was preparing 
to proceed from Rock river to go and destroy 
the gun-boat (the Sauks having refused to go 
and assist in getting her up), two young men 
arrived express from the Sauks on the Missouri, 
reporting that white people from the Illinois, 
tliey do not know who, sent word to the Sauks 
on the Missouri to inform those on the Rock 
river to be on their guard, as the Americans 
were to leave the Illinois on the 4th inst., in a 
strong detachment, to cut off the Sauks. No 
other certain news of their approach. 

Wednesday, August 24th. — Having delilier 
ated on the news Lieut. Graham brought from 
the Sauks,, and taking into consideration the 
promises made Indians in general by the Govern- 
ment, through Robert Dickson, and Col. McKay 
previous to his leaving here, of giving them 
every assistance, and supporting them agsinst 
the invading enemy, I think it my duty to send 
an expedition to the Sauks for that purpose, in 
order to convince them that promises made by 

•Col. KiilKTt Dickson. The Indians called him the R«f- 
Htiirftl M tn. The Ainorioan Indians wore accustomed in af- 
tri- years, when (iov. Win. Clark, of Missouri, liccanic the 
Siipcrinuridenlof Indi:ui Affairs in the northwest, of desig- 
nating- him as lieA Head, as ho had sandv hair. 

British officers are inviolable, and will be ful- 
tilled, even under the most inconvenient circum- 
stances. I, therefore, ordered that an expedi- 
tion to the Rock river would be in readiness to 
march on the 27th inst. The forces are men- 
tioned in the orders of the 24 th. I also ordered 
that Mr. Renville leave here early to-morrow 
morning for the Sioux, that is the friendly band, 
to ask their chief, with as many as he can spare 
of his young men, to go on the same expedition, 
and at the same time to tell the Feuille or Leaf, 
to send word to the Little Corbeau to proceed 
with all the warriors of the lake,* and when 
they get to the Prairie La Crosse, to wait there 
till they send me word, and get further orders 
what to do. Lieut. Graham brought intelligence 
that the Sauks were all assembling at the Rapids 
of Rock river, and had sent word to the Puants, 
etc., and tliat lie believed that before our ex])edi- 
tion reaches them, there will be about 1,200 
warriors assembled there. They promised they 
would fight to the last man, and sent me word 
that their fields of corn were open to the troops 
that I might send, as well as to all Indians going 
to their aid. 

Thursday, August 25th. — The guns are in a 
fair way ; the brass three-pounder finished at 
3 in the afternoon. A Renard canoe ar- 
rived from above. There are eight men, with 
Le Jeune Homme chief. They arrived very 
much dejected, and were ashamed to hold up 
their heads. They did not offer to speak to me. 
The commissary got in 500 weight of flour. 

Friday, August 26th. — At 10 the .fcune 
Homme assembled his young men, and asked 
to speak with me. I went and found them in 
Boilvin's house. They had a j)ipo of j)eace, an 
otter sack, and a painted elk skin, with a few 
pieces of dried meat to give me. When he 
arose to speak, he offered ine his hand ; but I 
refused to give him mine. He then began a 
discourse that had no sense in it. His princi- 
pal strain was, that he had always wished to 
follow his father, the Red Head's advice ; but 

♦Probabls- Lake St. Croix. 



the Americans had turned his head, and be had 
behaved ill. And was sorry for it. In enter- 
ing into the room, I, knoA'ing he had a British 
silk flag, and had not hoisted it when he arrived 
here, told him, before he spoke a word, to show 
me his flag, for I feared he had given it to his 
friends, the Americans. He sent and had it 
brought. I would have taken it from him, but 
fearing it might be improper, he having re- 
ceived it from the superintendent. On that 
account I said nothing about it. 

When he had finished his speech, his war 
chief got up with the pipe in his hand, and 
said : "I made use of all the sense the mother 
of life gave me, in order to induce you to smoke 
my pipe ; if I have done wrong, it is because I 
have been advised to it by my chief ;" and 
having concluded his remarks, and about to 
light the pipe, I told him to save himself the 
trouble, as I would not smoke with them. He 
laid down the pipe, etc., at my feet. 

I then replied to them thus : "You ought 
not to be surprised that I treat you in this way. 
You are of an age not to be foolish. You ought 
to have sense. I cannot, therefore, attribute 
your bad conduct, to us, to have risen from a 
want of knowing better. But I attribute it to 
a real inclination of wishing to be American 
subjects. If you were ashamed to expose your 
English flag to view, why did you not act as 
men, and arrive here with your American fa- 
ther's mark of distinction? The time is over for 
British ofiicers to flatter, beg and pray of the 
Indians to follow the good road. Your father 
the Red Head, is tired of using these means to 
Indians that come crying to him, when he is 
here, to get a blanket to cover themselves, or a 
charge of powder to kill wherewith to eat ; and 
then as soon as his back is turned, to raise 
their war club over our heads, and ask, with 
flattering stories, the same assistance from the 
enemy. None but dogs can be guilty of such 

" The time is drawing near when the sun 
will be eternally hid fi'om the bad Indians, and 

will be three times larger than now for good 
ones. Let every one who wishes well to his 
women and children, lose no time in showing 
his true colors ; for I think when the great 
chief, the Red Head arrives, his good children 
will appear bold and walk in good spirits, with 
their heads up. But the bad Indians will be 
like dogs almost starved to death. Everything 
that you have said, and my answer, I have 
marked on this piece of paper (holding up a 
sheet of paper), and will keep it till the great 
chief, the Red Head, arrives, and show it to 
him, that he may know our discourse. Your 
pipe and sack you will keep, and when he ar- 
rives, as he has the command of all the Indians, 
he will do as he pleases ; but as for me, I can- 
not make peace with the Americans." 

Never were Indians, perhaps, more dejected, 
and perhaps none ever so sincerely regretted 
their past folly. The Jeune Homme was the 
man that, when they got word of the Ameri- 
cans coming here last spring, got J. M. Cardinal, 
.■xn inhabitant of this place, to write the Ameri- 
cans the situation of the country, and sent some 
of his young men with it to the enemy, and 
afterwards oft'ered his services to go to war 
against us, and was instrun'ental in delivering 
up, with the Aile Rouge, or Red Wing, this 
place to the enemy. I conceived it my duty to 
talk to them in this strain, to convince them 
that the Uritish wished all the Indian Nations 
well, and would support them as long as they 
followed their good advice ; but, at the same 
time, put them*!a.t defiance, and despised any 
threats from those that chose to join, the Amer- 

Fort McKay, Aug. 26, 1814. 
To LiE0T. Gbaham. — 

Sir: — The expedition for the Rock river 
under your command, being now in readiness, 
you will march to-morrow morning at 8 
o'clock, and proceed with all haste to your place 
of destination. On your arrival there, you will 
assemble the Indians, and explain to them that 
the intention of the expedition is to support 



them in defending their lands, and women and 
children, according to promises made to them 
by their father, Robert Dickson, and Lieut. 
C'oi. McKay; and tliat in case of any attack, 
they must su2)pon and defend tiie guns as long 
as they have a man standing. That they must 
not amuse themselves, during the action, in 
taking scalps. They must destroy the enemy 
as much as possible, except prisoners. Those 
they will treat well, and not, as is generally the 
case, use them barbarously; but on the con- 
trary, if they use them as we always do our 
prisoners, and bring them here, they shall be 
well recompensed for it. You will, in case of 
being successful, and should be fortunate in 
making prisoners, use every means in prevent- 
ing their being insulted, or ill-used by the Indi- 
ans; and by all means act in every way towards 
them as becoming a British officer. You will 
not proceed below the Rock river until you 
find it necessary to take advantage of a com- 
manding situation. If the enemy do not reach 
Rock river in six days after your arrival there, 
you will decamp and return here, unless you get 
information of their being at hand. But in 
case you find the enemy's forces to be absolute- 
Ij' too strong to risk an engagement, you will 
retreat here with all possible haste, leaving the 
Indiana and a few of your men to follow up 
the enemy, and annoy them as much as possible 
until they reach here. Having full confidence 
in you, and the troops under your command, I 
trust to your judgment to arrange all necessary 
matters as occasion may require, and trusting 
to a deliberate and prudent conduct in you, I 
wish you a successful and safe return. 
I am, sir, etc., 

Tiios. G. Anderson, 

Capt. Comd'g. 
Saturday, August 27th. — At 8, the expedi- 
tion for the Rock river, marched. We gave 
them three shots from the six pounder. At 
2, the i'"euille, or Leaf, with fifty Sioux, arrived, 
on their way to join the expedition. Shortly 
after, forty Renards arrived for the same pur- 

pose. I gave them fifteen loaves of bread, and 
sent to procure a beef that I knew was for 
sale, but the owner sent me word if I would 
send him two milch cows, I might get his ox. 
I then inquired of Mr. Brisbois, from whom I 
have had every assistance he could possibly 
give, even to the distressing of his own family. 
He furnished a pair of two year old bulls, which 
I gave to the whole of the warriors. The 
Feuille brought word that he iiad met a Ren- 
ard canoe with two men in it, who informed 
him, that a Renard messenger was sent from 
the Illinois by the Americans, with a notice to 
the Indians, that they, the Americans, were on 
their way up here mainly to lake possession of 
their fort [at Prairie du Chien], and not to hurt 
the Indians. That they, the Indians, were 
requested to keep out of the way. That the 
Americans, like hunters in the wood, had 
wounded a deer ; they had wounded the Eng- 
lish, and were following the track till ihey 
should ruin or destroy the whole. The Feuille 
heard this report too late to authorize him to 
take the Renard. The Feuille does not under- 
stand the Renard language himself, but this was 
interpreted to him some time after passing the 
Renard canoe. 

Sunday, August 28th. — Gave the Feuille ten 
bushels of wheat to take him, with the Renards, 
to the Rock river. A young lad of this place, 
by the name of Antoine Du liois, volunteered 
his service, and embarked with the Sioux inter- 
preter. I gave the Feuille a few articles he 
was absolutely in want of. Fifty Sioux, of the 
Feuille band, with forty-five Renards, left this 
place at 2 o'clock singing the war song; and at 
6, about sixteen Puants arrived from above, de- 
barked at the upper end of the village, and 
walked down to the lower end, singing the war- 
song, then immediately embarked and went off. 
Wrote a note to Cajit. Grignon to prepare him- 
self to go off express to Mackinaw to-morrow 
at 10 o'clock. 

Monday, August 29th. — Finished the dis- 
patches at 10, and Capt. Grignon being detained 



in expectation of Mr. Antoine Brisbois arriving 
from below, did not set off till i in the after- 
noon. Mr. Brisbois did not arrive. 

Praieie du Chien, Foet McKay, 

Aug. 29, 1814. 
To Lieut. Col. MoDouall. — 

Sie: — The command of this post having been 
left to me by Lieut. Col. McKay, I have the 
honor to communicate to ) ou, that on the 2'i'th 
inst., I sent off a small detachment under the 
command of Lieut. Graham, of the Indian 
department, for the Rock river, consisting of 
thirty men, one brass three-pounder, and two 
swivels. Having sent Lieut. Graham to that 
place on the loth inst., in order to get a party 
of Sauks to proceed with him to within two 
miles of the enemy's abandoned Fort Madison, 
to take possession of, and, if possible, bring 
away a gun-boat that the enemy had got sunk, 
by the fall of a tree, last spring, on their way 
up here; and, at the same time, to get informa- 
tion of the enemy. 

But the Sauks, having got repeated informa- 
tion, by scouting parties, that the Americans 
were on the point of leaving St Louis for this 
place, they were afraid, and would not go. 
Lieut. Graham, therefore, determined to pro- 
ceed, with his small party of volunteers, to burn 
the gun-boat, in order to prevent its falling into 
the enemy's hands. As he was on the point of 
embarking for that purpose, two young Sauks 
arrived from the Sauks on the Missouri (wheie 
there are still ten lodges — say 100 men) express, 
with news that a courier had been sent by some 
French gentlemen, from St. Louis, to the Sauks 
on the Missouri, to notify them that a strong 
detachment of the enemy was to march from 
St. Louis on or about the 12th inst., to cut off 
the Indians at Rock river. 

The courier from St. Louis was sent to the 
Indians on the Missouri, that they might imme- 
diately give information to those on Rock river 
to be on their guard. Lieut. Graham, believing 
this report to be true, returned here on the 23d 

inst., but previous to his return, exclusive of 
circulating reports, the Indians at the Rock 
river sent word to me, and to the Indians above 
this, through the medium of a pipe, to inform, 
me of the enemy's being on their way here 
and begged that I would send them some ammu- 
nition, with one or two guns and a few soldiers, 
to assist them in defending their lands, women 
and children. 

On Lieut. Graham's arrival, I called together 
all the officers to have their opinions on the 
subject, and they universally agreed that it was 
absolutely necessary to send a small detachment, 
not only for the preservation of the post, but to 
retain the Indians in our favor. This small de- 
tachment, together with the aid they get from 
the Feuille with forty of his young men, will 
greatly encourage the Indians on the lower 
Mississippi, and preventtheir joining the enemy 
which necessity might otherwise compell them 
to do. 

The Sauks, Renards and Kiekapoos that were 
about the entrance of Rock river when Lieut. 
Graham was there, formed about 800 men, 
though, with the re-inforcements that will join 
them by the time the detachments from this 
reaches them, I am well persuaded will reach from 
1,200 to 1,500 men. Upwards of 100 men, Sioux, 
Puants and Renards, from above this, passed 
here yesterday on their way to join the detach- 
ment. Ammunition, arms and tobacco are the 
principal articles the Indians are really in dis- 
tress for. 

I beg leave to remark that the critical situa- 
tion of the country here at present absolutely 
requires that Robert Dickson should be here 
with the re-inforcements of troops asked for by 
Lieut. Col. McKay. The volunteer privates 
from Mackinaw and the b.ay, though willing to 
serve their country, are becoming weary of 
garrison duty, and as the time for which they 
volunteered their services having expired, 
they hope to be soon relieved. I send Capt. 



Grignon, of the bay express, with this commu- 
nication I have the honor to he, etc., 

Tho.s. G. Anderson, 

Capt. Commanding. 

Tuesday, August .30th — At 12 o'clock the 
Bourgue, a Puant chief, arrived, and rejtorts 
that he licard tliat Robert Dickson had left 
Mackinaw some time since for this post. 

Wednesday, August 3)st — Requested of Mr. 
Brisbois to rejiair Mr. Fisher's store, a con- 
venient place to put part of the public goods. 
The Feuille having assured me that he had sent 
off two young men from his village to inform 
tlie Little Corbeau, I did not send an interjjret- 
er, as ordered on the 2Sth inst. The Feuille 
gave me this information on the 29th inst., in 
the morning. 

Thursday, Sept. 1st, ISU— 

To Mr. Frenier: You will leave this im- 
mediately, with three men in a wooden canoe, 
and proceed with all haste up the Mississippi 
till you fall in with the Little Corbeau. You 
will tell him the enemy are on their way up 
here. That Robert Dickson, from Indian re- 
ports, will be here in a very short time, and 
that it is requested that the principal part of his 
band will remain above this, not higher up than 
the Prairie La Crosse, to hunt, till further 

Yours, etc., Thomas G.Anderson, 

Capt. Commanding. 

Mr. Frenier went off at 10 o'clock. Showers 
of rain all day. 

Friday, September 2d — Two letters that 
I wrote Lieut. Graliam when he went down to 
the Rock river in quest of the American gun- 
boats, having been omitted, are inserted as fol- 

Fort McKav, Aug. 14, isu. 
'J'o Lieut. Graham: 

Sir — You will leave this to-morrow morning 
at 10 o.clock, with one intei'preter and six men, 
in a canoe. You will proceed immediately to 
tlie Rock river, unless you get certain news of 
the enemy's approacli. On your arrival there 

you will call together the Sank chiefs, soldiers 
and braves, and give them a carrot of tobacco, 
as a present, and a request to them to go with 
you to assist in obtaining the object of vour 
voyage, whicli is, to bring up an American gun- 
boat that is lying a short distance above Fort 
]\[adison. In case you are successful in getting 
the boat, you will u.-^e your endeavors in gettino- 
thelndians to assist you in bringing lier up here; 
but if you cannot get that assistance, you will 
run her up into the Rock river where she will 
be safe till she can lie sent for from Iiere. If 
your best exertions fail in getting off the boat 
you will burn her, to prevent her falling into 
the enemy's hands. 

In case you get certain information of the 
enemy's approach; or if you find it necessary on 
any other occasion to send an express here by 
land, you will order the Indians bearing it, to 
show themselves on the hills opposite this 
place. On their arrival, they will halloo 
a few shouts, then fire one gun, and shortly after 
they will fire three shots. This will be a signal to 
let me know who they are. In asking assistance 
from the Itidians, you will tell them if they go 
with you and bidng up the boat, they will be 
amply recompensed when the re-inforccment 
arrives from Mackanaw. Wishing you a short 
and successful passage, I am, sir, etc., 

Tnos. G. Anderson, Capt. Com'd'g. 
Fort McKay, Aug. 21, 1814. 
Lieut. Graham: 

Sir — Last evening three Renards arrived here 
with a pipe, sent, they say, by the Sauks, to tell 
me tlie Americans were on their way uj) here; 
but the express could [not] tell me what num- 
l)er of barges were coming, nor whore they 
wore seen. I will thank you to make particular 
inquiry of the Sauks, where the pijie came from; 
anil tell them if they send in future, to send 
peo])lethat can be depended upon to give every 
information. They asked for ten kegs of gun- 
powder, and guns — two articles tliat tliey are 
already well supplied with. I, therefore gave 
them none. 



Get certain and particular information before 
you send or return. You will tell the Indians, 
in case the enemy are coming up, to follow them 
by land, on each side of the Mississippi, and an- 
noy them as much as possible; at the same time 
not to waste their ammunition in firing random 
shots. They requested me to go down and 
meet the enemy at the Rock river. This being 
impossible, for several reasons, I refused them 
positively. If you cannot get the gun-boat, use 
every means to destroy it. Yours, etc., 

Thos. G. Anderson, Capt. Cora'd'g. 

At 4 A. M., a Puant arrived with Francois La 
Poiiite's horse, that had been stolen by the 

Saturday, Sept. 3d. — A cool pleasant morn- 
ing,'but foggy. 
To LiEDT. Graham: 

Sib: — You will receive by interpreter Grig- 
noii, 52') pound.s of flour, all that I can possibly 
muster. Indian report says, that Robert Dick- 
son left Mackinaw a long time ago for this 
place. I have been waiting now three days, in 
hopes of certain information on that head, to 
no purpose. If you think it necessary, you can 
remain a few days longer than the term men- 
tioned in your instructions of the i2iith ult. I 
am very anxious to hear from you. I refer you 
to Mr. Grignon for further particulars. In 
hopes shortly to receive flattering news from 
you, I am, sir, etc., 

Thos. G. Anderson, Capt. Comd'g. 

Sunday, Sept. 4th. — At 10 the militia assem- 
bled as usual. I thanked the inhabitants of St. 
Friole, by way of encouraging them, for having 
furnished what little flour they had done. 
Having heard a rumor that the volunteers were 
about to take their discharge when on parade, 
I represented to them the disgrace that would 
attend such a step, etc. They made no reply, 
and continued their duty for the present. At 
3 A. M. two Renard canoes arrived, with six 
men and several women and children. By way 
of getting provisions and ammunition, they fab- 
ricated a story that the detachment gone below 

had surrendered to the Americans. Knowing 
this to be a base falsehood, I abused the cow- 
ardly villains, as they deserved, and gave them 
nothing. This afternoon a canoe of Renards 
from above was seen by old La Pointe, to 
go down the river behind the island. He did 
not give me notice till late in the evening. 

Monday, Sept. 5th. — ^The Renards that ar- 
rived yesterday, went off above. 

Tuesday, Sept 6th. — Finding that one Fon- 
taine had a mare and a young colt here, and 
that he had been in the Illinois three years, I 
ordered the mare to be taken (the colt being 
only this spring's) and broke in for the King's 

Wednesday, Sept. 7th. — At 4 o'clock four 
Sauks, old men arrived from the Rock river, 
bringing the following communications from 
Lieut. Graham: 

Rock River, Sept. 3, 1814. 
Capt. Thos. G. Anderson: 

Sir. — Agreeably to your orders of the 26th of 
last month, I proceeded with all expedition for 
this place, which I reached on the 29th of the 
same month. Although there is no apparent 
danger, our coming here has given more satis- 
faction to the Sauks than if all the goods in the 
King's store in Mackinaw had been sent them, as 
they are now firmly convinced that their English 
Father is determined to support them against 
the ambition and unjust conduct of their ene- 
mies. I made known to them the intention of 
the expedition, to which they answered that, if 
we should come to action, they would stand 
by us to the last man. One hundred and 
twenty-two men, Sioux, Rena-'ds and Puants, ar- 
rived here the day before yesterday. The whole 
of the Indians appear to be much animated to 
meet the enemy, and I think with wliat force 
we have to be able to re}pulse any party that 
the enemy will be able to send this way. 

I have not l)een able to obtain aiij' satisfactory 
information of the enemy coming up. Four 
days ago, five Indians that went down on dis- 
covery, returned. They were as far as Cap au 



Gris. They say at that point there is a imall 
fort, which I suppose to be Fort Independence. 
There was a considerable number of men in and 
around it, with two large gun-boats at anchor 
before it. Whether this force is stationed there 
to guard their frontiers, or for collecting for an 
expedition to come this way, is uncertain. I 
detained this letter three or four days, waiting 
the return of five Indians that had been gone 
about twelve days, in hopes to obtain from them 
more certain information; but finding their stay 
too long, I send oflE this, as I know you are 
impatient to hear from this place. 

Eight Indians went off, three days ago, to 
find out what detained the others. To them I 
gave orders to burn the boat, as I thought it 
would be impossible to send the number of men 
it would require to bring her up in case of an at- 
tack. As there is continually a number of In- 
dians on the look-out,we cannot be surprised on 
the least notice of their coming. We shall take 
our position on the island,* which is the best 
place for defense that I know on the Missis- 
sippi. I beg you will pay attention to those 
that go up with this, as we are dependent on 
them here for provisions. As soon as the dis- 
covering party returns, if there is no appear- 
ance of the enemy coming up, I shall of course 
return. I hope ere this you have news from 

Sir, I am, etc., 

(Signed). DtmCAN Geaham, 

Lieut. Indian Dept. 

(P. S.) Having finished this at 10 o'clock at 
night, in the morning the discovering party ar- 
rived. They saw, yesterday morning three 
large gun-boats under sail on their way up, about 
thirty leagues from here. It seems their fears 
prevented them from knowing their exact num- 
V)c-r. Before this reaches you, we shall, I hope, 
decide the business. As soon as it is daylight, 
I will send Lieut. Brisbois with a canoe well 
manned, if possible to know their strength. 

Should we be attended with success, you shall 
soon hear. I expect them after to-morrow. 
Nothing further at present. The 4th of Sep- 
tember about 1 o'clock in the morning. 

(signed) Duncan Graham. 

At five, a canoe arrived from the ahove;three 
Iroquois from the Riviere des Sotrax* having 
left their families on that river, and came here 
to get some ammunition, as they were quite des- 
titute of that article. 

Fort McKay, Sept. 7th, 1814. 
To Lieut. Graham — 

Sie: — I received your communication of the 
3d and 4th inst., and from the enemy's ap- 
parent force, I hope ere this the business is 
decided in our favor. I am much gratified to 
have it in my power to give a most flattering 
detail of the good conduct of the Sauks, etc., to 
Lieut. Col. McDouall, who I am well persuaded 
will be highly pleased with them. No news 
from Mackinaw, but houily expected. The ex- 
press for Mackinaw left here on the 29th ult., 
also an express for the Sioux on the 1st inst., 
not yet returned. In case of your being suc- 
cessful, and take any prisoners, use every effort 
to preserve them; and if your stock of provis- 
ions will admit, bring such prisoners up here, 
to be sent on to Mackinaw. I am, sir, 

Thos. G.Anderson, 
Capt. Commanding. 

N. B. You will receive this by the return of 
the Sauks you sent up here, who leave hero to- 
morrow morning. T. G. A. 

Thursday, Sept. Hth. — The Sauks tliat ar- 
rived with the communication from Lieut. 
Graham, set off with dispatches at 8 o'clock in 
the morning. Previous to their setting out, I 
gave them each a blanket, a breech-clout, and a 
knife, they being four in number. Tlioy went 
off highly pleased. 

Friday, Sept. 9th — At 3 o'clock in the after- 
noon, six Puant canoes arrived from the Ouiscon- 
sin, with La Gruness, and the Old Wolf. They 

*Rock Island, unque8tionabl.v. 

•Saut eur or Chippewa River, doubtless. 



brought word that a Folle Avoine woman from 
Mackinaw bronglit news to the bay, that when 
she left the post, the American fleet was in 
sight of Mackinaw. How long since, or wliat 
was their force, she knew nothing about. 

Saturday, Sept. 10th — At 1 o'clock p. m., 
five Sioux arrived from the Rock river, bring- 
ing news that Lieut. Graham, with the detach- 
ment under his command, and the Indians, had 
attacked and defeated eight large American 
gun-boats at the Rock river; had taken neither 
prisoners nor anything else. At 5 o'clock in the 
afternoon, a young Sauk, who had set off ivom 
the Rock river express with two Sioux and a 
Renard, buthaving tired them out, arrived here 
alone with dispatches fi-om Lieut. Graham, as 

Rock River, Sept. Vth, isi4. 
Capf. Thomas G. Anderson — 

Sir: — I mentioned to you in my letter of the 
4th inst., by the information I had from the 
Indians, that the enemy were within thirty 
leagues of this place on their way up. As soon 
as I found out their strength, I concluded the 
place of their destination must be La Prairie 
du Chien. The rapids was the only place where 
we could attack such a force to any advantage. 
On the 5th inst., we moved to the westside of 
the island, and took our position at the narrow- 
est part of the channel, the only place where 
they could pass at that point. We were de- 
termined to dispute the road with them, inch 
by inch. 

They appeared in sight at 4 o'clock p. m., with 
a strong fair wind. There were eight large 
boats, four of which were equal in size to the 
one that made her escape from the Prairie. The 
largest of them had a white flag flying at her 
mast head. When they came to the head of 
Credit island, about two miles from us, a storm 
of rain, thunder and lightning came on, and the 
wind shifted to the opposite point of the com- 
pass, which compelled them to pass the remain- 
der of the day, and that night there. All the 
women and children were sent to the island . 

took all the Sioux with us to cover the guns in 
case of being obliged to retreat, as they prom- 
ised they would rather be killed to the last man 
than give up the guns. 

I told the Sauks, in case the enemy should 
attempt to land at their village, to retreat to the 
island, and then we would return altogether 
and attack them. The 6th, at break of day, 
some of the Sauks came to us, and requested 
that we should attack them immediately, as the 
wind was against them, and some of their boats 
were aground. We crossed to the main land at 
the Foxes' village. There we left our boats, 
and went as quick as possible through the prai- 
rie unpcrceived by the enemy until we were on 
the beach opposite to them. Here we had a 
close view of them. I had no idea of the enor- 
mous size of their boats before. They lay with 
their broad sides close to a low sandy beach. 
The largest of them had six port-holes open on 
the side next to us. The channel was about 
600 yards broad. 

We were on an elevated spot, but no covering. 
I requested the Indians not to waste their am- 
munition firing at the boats, and save it in case 
the enemy should attempt to land. Tiiey did so. 
Finding they could not make up matters with 
the Sauks, as they had killed one of their sen- 
tinels in the night, they took down the white 
flag, and jiut up the bloody flag in its place, 
which I believe to be a signal of no quarters. 
It was then 7 o'clock in the morning. Every- 
thing being ready, we opened a brisk fire, from 
the three-pounder, and two swivels, on their 
boats. In al)out three quarters of an hour the 
largest of their boats, which was ahead of the 
others, after having about fifteen shots through 
her, began to push off, and dropped astern of the 
rest, and made the best of her way down the 
current. The others soon followed her. We 
kept firing at them along the bank, as far as the 
ground would permit us to drag the guns ; but 
they soon got out of our reach. 

They went on about a league, and put to 
shore. I thought they might intend to throw 



up some breast-works, and make a stand at tliat 
place. I sent immediately for the boats to go 
with all the Indiaii.'f, to endeavor to dislodge 
them from there. By the time we were ready 
to embark, some of the Indians that followed, 
returned and informed us, that it appeared to 
them that the Americans had committed the 
bodies of some of their men to a watery grave, 
well knowing if they buried them on shore, they 
would be torn to pieces. They then got up 
their sails, the wind being fair, and made the 
best of their way off. As the enemy landed at 
that place, the Indians say they were about 1 ,000 
men. I think their number to be between 600 
and 800. 

If we had had a larger supply of ammunition 
and provisions, we might liave harassed them as 
far as the rapi<ls of the liiviere des IVIoines ; but 
having only a scanty supply of the one, and en- 
tirely destitute of the other, we were obliged to 
give lip pursuing them any further. Altiiough 
we have not been able to capture any of their 
boats, they have been completely repulsed, and 
I have every reason to believe with a consider- 
able loss, as out of fifty-four shots that we fired 
at tlieni, there was only three or four that did 
not go through their boats. The action lasted 
about an hour. One of the swivels 'was served 
by Lieut. Hrisbois, and the other by Colin Camp- 
bell, which they executed with credit to them- 
selves ; and all attached to the expedition be- 
haved tliemselves in a manner worthy of veteran 
troops, for they seemed to vie with each other 
who would be the foremost, notwithstanding 
liiey were entirely exposed to the enemy's shot, 
and I am happy to say that not a man was hurt. 
It is to the skill and courage of Scrgt. Keating, 
on whom everything depended, that we owe our 
success, and no praise of mine can bestow on 
him what he deserves. As the Indians had no 
communication with the enemy, I have not been 
able to find out who commamled the Ameri- 
can expedition. Sir, I am, etc. 

Duncan Graham, 
Lieut. Indian Dept. 

Sunday, Sept. 11th. — The Indians from the 
Rock river detachment continued arriving in 
small hands. 

Monday, Sept. 12th. — The remainder of the 
Sioux, Puants and Renards arrived from the 
detachment lielow. At i o'clock a wooden 
canoe arrived from the portage, with interpret- 
er Besler and Lance Corporal Haywood, and 
their men, bringing with them one case ord- 
nance stores and one keg of powder. The con- 
ductor of the boat from Mackinaw, not being 
active, did not get the boat over the portage, 
therefore the ordnance stores, etc., were left 
there till I can send for them. I received let- 
ters as follows: 

MiCHIIXIMACKANAC, Aug. 21, 1814. 

To Capt. Anderson, or officer commanding Fort 

McKay : 

Sir: — I have great pleasure in returning you 
my thanks for your judicious and spirited con- 
duct during operations which ended in the cap- 
ture of Fort McKay. I doubt not that whenever 
another opportunity presents, you will again 
distinguish yourself by such praise worthy con- 
duct. I beg you will take the earliest oppor- 
tunity of expressing my entire satisfaction with 
the good conduct and spirit evinced by all ranks 
employed upon the expedition ; but in particular 
to mention my obligations to Capts. Dease and 
Grignon, and Licuts. D. Graham and Brisbois, 
and the interpreters, St. Germain, Renville, 
Honore and Grignon, of the Indian dejiartment. 
I likewise request you to return to Sergt. Keai- 
ing, particularly, my thanks for the bravery and 
good conduct which he so conspicuously dis- 
played, and also to the detachment of the Mich- 
igan Fencibles and to the volunteers and militia, 
for their spirited and exemplary behavior. Yciii 
will convey to the garrison in general my firm 
belief that the fort which they so gallantly won, 
they will as gallantly defend. 

In the event of Col. McKay's having left tbe 
fort, you will command them until further 
orders, making every possible exertion to 
strengthen your post, and omitting no precau- 




tion which may be necessary for its defense. I 
have sent Lance Corporal Heywood, of the 
10th Veteran Battalion, in charge of some 
ordnance stores. He is to remain witli you, 
and be employed at the artillery, under Sergt. 
Keating, whom I have appointed ordnance 
store keeper at Fort McKay. 

You will see the obvious necessity of culti- 
vating the best possible understanding with the 
Indians, particularly with our allies, the Sauks 
and Renards. You will signify to them how 
highly I am pleased with their conduct, and 
that everything in my j^ower shall be done to 
supply their wants. You will signify to the 
Leaf and Little Corbeau my approbation of the 
assistance which they have afforded, and my 
hope that, if another attack is threatened this 
fall, that they will bring down the whole of 
their warriors to your assistance. Point out to 
them of what consequence it is to them to keep 
the enemy at their present distance. You may 
assure them that great efforts are making by 
the King in their behalf ; and that the ministry 
are determined to make no peace till the lands 
plundered from the Indians are restored. To 
attain this purpose, great re-inforcements of 
troops are coming out. 

As Lieut. Grignon, of the Indian department, 
is to reside for some time at Green Bay, you 
will communicate with me through him, l)y 
every possible opportunity, taking care to ac- 
quaint me with every consequence that occurs. 
If our post is likely to be attacked, you will 
also call upon him to collect whatever Folles 
Avoines, Winnebagoes and militia from Green 
Bay that he can, and repair with tlie utmost ex- 
pedition to your assistance. I am not without 
hopes of being able, by and by, to send a de- 
tachment of troops to re-inforce your garrison. 

It will be necessary that some regular system 
should be adopted for victualing the troops, 
which Capt. Rolette will undertake. They 
must be supplied with game and deer, and 
what beef can be got. We have not any pork 
to spare, and, indeed the only chance of our 

being able to keep a fort at Prairie du Chien, 
is by the country being able to feed and sup- 
port that garrison, without making any demand 
upon this post for provisions, which is out of 
the question for me to grant. Capt. Dease and 
yourself must make the best arrangements you 
can for supplying the troops, taking care that 
the utmost regularity and correctness appear 
in your accounts and disbursements. Col. Mc- 
Kay mentions his finding Mr. Honore, of the 
Indian department,'a very useful commissary, 
and you had better still employ him in that 

On Capt. Rolette's return he will take with 
him the proper form, according to which your 
monthly pay-lists are to be made out. On the 
24th of each month, the troops to be regularly 
mustered, and the men all present or their 
absence accounted for. You will always be 
upon your guard, and take the necessary pre- 
cautions to become acquainted, through the 
Sauks, with all the motions of the enemy ; and 
endeavor to ascertain, as early as possible, if 
they have intentions of attacking you, tliat you 
may, in due time, be prepared for a most de- 
termined and vigorous defense. With the as- 
sistance of your Indians, I doubt not you will 
be able to repel any attempt of the enemy ; but 
above all things, be constantly in readiness for 
it. I have the honor to be, etc., 

(Signed) R. McDouai.l, 

Lieut. Col. Commanding. 
Point au Ecoece, Aug. 24, 1814. 
My Dear Anderson : 

As soon as the boat arrives, you will send 
down ten kegs of powder to the Sauks, etc. I 
need not tell you to put the place in the best 
state of defence, and get all the Indians from 
above, etc Yours, etc. 

(Signed) Wm. McKay, Lieut. Col., etc. 

Besides these, I received other letters from 
my friends 

Tuesday, September 13. — Lieut. Brisbois ar 
rived early in the morning in a canoe, with in- 
terpreter Grignon, and the men that went down 



witli the first supplies of provisions. At ) '2 
o'clock the weather cleared up, having rained 
successively two days and nights. At halt' past 
six Lieut. Graham arrived with the whole de- 
tachment under his command, all well, after 
having driven off eight largo gun-boats, with 
about 100 men in each of them. We were 
obliged to give a good deal of bread and some 
wheat to the warriors from below. The Puants 
drove off and killed one of Capt. Rolette's 
oxen. Notwithstanding liis men saw them 
drive the ox away, they neither attempted to 
re.scue him out of their hands, nor come and 
give information, in order to get assistance 
from me. 

Wednesda3% September 14.-:— Began to write 
dispatches to Mackinaw. Finished at 5 o'clock 
in the afternoon. To Lieut. Col. McDouall, as 
follows : 

Praikie du Chikn, Fort McKay, 
Sept. 14, 1814. 

Sir — -I have the honor to acknowledge the 
receipt of your obliging favor of the 21st ult., 
which I received on the 12th inst., in the 
evening, with one case of fixed shot and one 
keg of powder, the conductor of the boat, not, 
as he says, having been able to drag the boat 
across the portage. I sent off a boat this 
afternoon to bring away the ammunition, and 
the one from Mackinaw will return immedi- 
ately from there to Green Bay with these dis- 
patches, directed to Lieut. Grigtion, for him to 

I have the honor most graciously to thank 
you for myself, and in the name of all the 
tr.iops, etc., attached to this garrison, for your con- 
<li'scending approbation of their conduct in the 
late engagement at this place, under our un- 
<launted and able commander, Lieut. Col. Mc- 
Kay, to whose judicious management the inhab- 
itants of this place, and the Indian tribes on the 
Mississippi, acknowledge a happy and easy de- 
liverance from an enemy that absolute necessity 
obliged them for a moment to countenance. I 
beg you may l)e assured every particular of 

your orders shall be strictly attended to, and 
put in execution without delay. I am happy in 
having your a|)probation of Capt. Deasc's able 
assistance to act in conjunction with rae. I shall 
only take the liberty to remark, the only change 
that can at present be made about tht; garrison, is 
to put in comfortable quarters in which to lodge 
the troops; and as for provisions, in my opinion, 
the cheapest and most convenient means would 
be to send a detachment from here taking the 
Sauks,etc., on their way, and bring from some dis. 
tauce above St. Louis, a drove of cattle, where 
the Indians report that there are vast droves 
running wild about American abandoned settle- 
ments. In this case, and even in the event of 
depending upon the Indians, a quantity of salt 
would be necessary. 

Lieut Graham having arrived last evening 
with the detachment from Rock river. I have 
the honor to communicate to you, that on leav- 
ing here the 27th ult., they made the best of 
their way, and arrived at the Rock river on the 
29th; and soon got certain information that the 
enemy were near .at hand, but could not know 
their strength till eight large gun-boats hove in 
sight on the 5th inst., at 4 o'clock in the 
afternoon. The foremost being the largest, and 
a finely painted boat, was supposed to be the 
commanding officer's. She had a white flag 
hoisted at her mast-head. This was supposed 
to be with an intent either to deceive the In- 
dians, or to use every means to gain them- over 
to their side. Our people kept themselves con- 
cealed, expecting the enemy would attempt to 
ascend the rapids, when they would have had a 
fair opportunity to capture the whole. The 
enemy had no communication with the Indi:ins, 
but lay quietly at anchor. 

In the course of the night, contrary to Lieut. 
Graham's orders, some of the Indians shot two 
of the sentries from off their boats, and liie next 
morning the enemy struck the white fiag, and, 
to their confusion be it said, hoisted a scarlet 
one in its place, a signal for no quarters. Lieut. 
Graham, finding their intentions were to re- 



main there some time, and as the Indians be- 
came ungovernable, it became necessary to 
commence a fire upon lliem, which was done 
with much honor to those who commanded the 
guns. They having fired about fifteen rounds 
into the front boat, she turned her stern to the 
current, and sailed down as fast as possible, the 
seven others immediately followinij. The guns 
played upon them as long as they could be 
dragged along the beach. 

Lieut. Brisbois commanded one of the swivels, 
Sergt. Keating the three-pounder, and Sergt. 
Colin Campbell, of the fencibles or volunteers, 
the other swivel. The shots were well di- 
rected, for out of fifty-four that were fired, not 
more than three missed doing execution. The 
enemy were thrown into such a consternation 
on seeing a few red coats, that they could do 
nothing with their guns, and in fact did not 
fire more than fifteen shots till they recovered 
their senses, and then they were too far off to 
do execution, but kept up a brisk random firing. 
Notwithstanding about 1,200 Indians, and the 
detachment from this place were the number 
present, and every man displayed the greatest 
courage and good conduct, yet the battle was 
fought by only about twenty men that manned 
the guns. 

If the officers and men of this garrison have 
merit for their conduct on the I7th of July last, 
surely the detachment to the Rock river excel, 
and deserve every praise. The gun-boats were 
supposed to have 800 men on board, and some 
of them were pierced for twelve guns. I beg 
to mention particularly Lieut. Graham's judi- 
cious conduct in the command of the detach- 
ment, and Lieut Brisbois, Sergt. Keating, and 
Sergt. Colin Campbell of the volunteers, for 
their courage and well managed tiring. On 
this head too much cannot be said of Sergt. 

The satisfaction afforded the Indians from 
their having had this assistance, can only be 
imagined. Their shouts and acclamations of 
joy at every shot from our guns, drowned the 

report of the guns, and notwithstanding the 
only assistance they could give was to drag 
about the guns, they displayed the greatest 
courage, and promised to die to a man with 
their fathers. The Feuille wilh his warriors 
were particularly active in this duty. The 
Sauks have, without repeating their gallant con- 
duet in the field, bthaved in a manner foreign 
to Indian Nations. They, having large fields 
of corn, strove one with another, who would be 
the most obliging, and furnish the most of 
that article to the detachment. 

Not being well acquainted with the duties of 
a commanding officer, I dreaded reproach by 
leaving the garrison, is the reason why I did 
not go myself with the detachment below; but 
should any other opportunity present itself, I 
will risk the leaving the garrison in charge of 
some militia, to go and meet the enemy with 
all the force I can muster, unless I receive con- 
trary orders. The iron three-pounder, we took 
with Fort McKay, is without any elevating 
screw, a necessary part of the gun we cannot 
get made here. I take the liberty to refer you 
to letters written to and received from Lieut. 
Graham during his absence with the detach- 
ment to the Rock river, which will afford you 
a more minute detail of the whole management. 

That worthy soldier, Sergt. Keating, begs of 
me to request you will do him the favor to ac- 
cept his warmest acknowledgments for the 
honor you have shown him. From his behav- 
ior since he left Mackinaw, I have not the 
smallest doubt but he will continue to deserve 
your approbation of his conduct. I have the 
honor, etc., 

Thos. G. Anderson, Capt. Com'd'g. 

Sent a barge off for the portage to bring 
away the ammunition, and at the same time 
to take the dispatches there and forward them 
by the barge that came from Mackinaw to Lieut. 
Grignon at Green Bay, and for him to forward 
to Mackinaw. 

Thursday, Sept. 15th. — Nothing material 
happened till the afternoon at 6 o'clock. 



when interpreter Frenier arrived from 
above, with news that the Sioux would all 
leave their villages on the 1-tth inst., to come 
and wait at the place I told them till further 
orders, except the Little Corbeau with his lodge, 
who would come and camp here. This chief 
sent word to the Renards above this, that his 
Father had told him to destroy the Americans 
as much as lay in his power, and he knew these 
Renards to be Americans; but at the same time 
t' ey were related to the Sioux, on which account 
he warned them to be out of his way when he 
should come down. That he would be down 
with a detachment, and intended to hunt 
Americans all winter ; and that whatever of 
that description came in his sight he would cut 
down. When the Americans were here, they 
sent a carrot of tobacco to each village except 
his, saying thej- knew him to be too good an 
Englishman to be induced to join them. The 
Little Corbeau said he was quite proud of the 
honor they did him ; but as it was done with a 
view to despise him, he could not forget it on 
that account, and the only means of retaliation 
he had, was to make his young men take a few 
scalps, which he would have done before the 

Friday, September 16th. — Got word of some 
Puants having killed an ox, and that they were 
drying the meat a short distance below the en- 
trance of the Oiiisconsin. By allowing them 
to go on in this way, without trying to prevent 
it, they would in a short time destroy all the 
cattle in this region, and leave us destitute of 
provisions. I, therefore, ordered Lieut. Bris- 
bois, of the Indian department, with one inter- 
preter and four men, to go to their lodge and 
take whatever meat they had, and order thorn 

Fort McKay, Sept. 10, 1814. 
Lieut. Brisisois. — 

Sir: — Some Puants camped a short distance 
below the entrance of the Ouisconsin, having, 
in defiance of the orders they have received to 
the contrary, killed, within this day or two, an 

ox belonging to a citizen of this place; you are 
recjuested to go immediately, with one inter- 
preter and four of the volunteers, to order them 
aw.ay from this, and take what beef they may 
have remaining. Yours, etc., 

Thos. G. Anderson, Capt. Comd'g. 

At 6, Lieut. Brisbois returned, bringing with 
him a little dried meat, and some tallow. I gave 
the meat to those that had been to bring it, and 
the tallow I kept for the use of the guns. Lieut. 
Brisbois brought word that the Puants e.x- 
pected to have been taken, and confined in the 
garrison. They said they w-re surprised that 
we complained that they killed an ox ; that we 
would be more surprised when their Father ar- 
rived from Mackinaw, for then they would 
neither leave an ox, cow or horse in the village. 

Saturday, September I7th. — Lieut. Graham, 
when at Rock river, found some of the Mis- 
souri Indians there, who came with an intention 
to see the superintendent; and finding that they 
behaved themselves so well in the action, he 
promised them some trifling articles from the 
King's store. I, accordingly, mustered what I 
could, and set off interpreter, Guiilroy, with 
them, ordering, at the same time, that he should 
remain with the Sauks in case any news should 
be received of the enemy's coming up, to get 
occular information, and immediately to bring 
me word. 

Sunday, September 18th. — At 10, assembled 
the troops as usual, and read to them the con- 
tents of Lieut. Col. McDouall's letter as far as 
it regarded them. I then spoke to them in the 
following manner: "After reading the con- 
tents of Lieut. Col. McDouall's letter to you as 
far as it regards Michigan fencibles, volun- 
teers, etc., I now take the opportunity to thank 
the detachments in general that defeated the 
eight American gun-boats at the Rock river, for 
their good and spirited conduct during their 
absence from this place, and do not make the 
smallest doubt but they will receive the thanks 
of Lieut. Col. McDouall. I also take this op- 
portunity of explaining to you all, the orders 



of the day, in which you will find the demands 
made upon the different corps ; and as it is for 
the preservation of this place in general, and 
for the good of His Majesty's service, I have 
not the smallest doubt but my demands will be 
executed without a murmur. From your good 
conduct, and attention to your duties since the 
Michigans and volunteers so nobly possessed 
themselves of this fort, and delivered the citi- 
zens of this place from an enemy, the presence 
of which was most aggravating to them, I have 
every reason to believe I shall not be under the 
necessity of going to extremities, a most dis- 
agreeable task to one who wishes his fellow- 
soldiers and volunteers everything that is good 
and glorious." 

At 12 o'clock, a Sioux woman from above, 
brought word that a party of Gens de Feuille, 
with some Yanktons of the Riviere des Moines, 
numbering about forty men, were near the Feu- 
ille's village, destined for the war path; but 
they did not know where the the Feuille, or 
Leaf, was ; and having been notified not to go 
alone, he went with his warriors to know what 
were the intentions of this party. No news 

About 2 o'clock, hearing that Winosheek, 
an old Puant, was in possession of a pipe and 
wamhum for the Sioux, I inquired what was 
'the intention of it. The old man brought it to 
my room, and showed it to me, saying it was to 
ask permission of the Sioux to winter on their 
lands between this and the Riviere des Sioux ; 
not to go to war on the Sotrax [Sauteurs, or 
Chippewas], but, on the contrary, to request all 
Indians, of what Nation soever, to join hands, 
and not allow an American to come this far. 
How true this is, I know not. 

Monday, Sept. 19th. — Five Sauks arrived 
about 10 o'clock with news that the enemy 
were at the entrance of the Riviere des Moines, 
but uncertain what were their number, or 
whether they were making a fort, or on their 
way up here. I, therefore, await interpreter 
Guillroy's return, to decide what I will do — 

whether to go and meet them, or wait their 
arrival here. At 12, sent off interpreter Ren- 
ville to notify the Sioux to keep themselves in 
readiness, and to assemble from the Prairie a 
La Orosse downvrards to hunt till further orders. 

Tuesday, Sept. 20th.— Nothing of consequence. 
A party of militia at work at the fort. En- 
gaged Charles La Pointe at ten shillings a day 
to oversee and finish the doubling of some part 
of the garrison [pickets] where they are weak. 
The three guns kept constantly drilling. Bought 
a horse to draw the six-pounder. 

Wednesday, Sept. 21st. — At 2 p. m., the barge 
arrived from portage with the ordnance stores, 
and powder and tobacco for the Indian depart- 
ment. A case of round shot for the three- 
pounder wanting, and nearly a keg of powder ; 
and one-third of a roll of tobacco belonging to 
the Indian department missing. About 4 o'clock 
in the afternoon six Reiiards, of the Barboul- 
liers' band arrived from above to learn the 
news. They brought a pipe, and the following 
speech from the HarbouUier : 

" My Father, why have you not confidence in 
me ? I am yours. In everything you do I 
wish to be with you. I can only die once, and 
the only death I look for is alongside of you. 
1 expected you would have sent me word to tell 
uie the enemy were coming up. I send you my 
pipe to tell you my ideas, and at the same time 
to know yours. 

"My father, if there are any bad birds, do not, 
I beg of you, number me with them. I have 
hold of your hand, and will never let it slip ; 
but will follow your road as long as I live. 
Send me word what you intend doing. I am 
ready to follow you. When I went to meet the 
bad dogs last time at the Rock river, I had but 
a few mouthfuls to give my warriors, but now 
I have really too much — what might make a 
good feast. My young men are numerous, 
stout and hungry." 

I replied : "My brethren you must not call 
me Father. You have only one Father in this 
country, that is the Red Head, Robert Dickson, 



the others are all your brethren. The moment 
that the Sauks arrived from below, and told me 
thoy had seen the enemy, they supposed, on 
their way up here, I sent off an interpreter with 
them to inform all the Indians he should see on 
his way up, till he should meet the Little Cor- 
beau, of the news the Sauks brought. At the 
same time to request all to repair to Prairie a 
la Crosse, to await the return of interpreter 
Guillroy, whom I sent down some days ago to 
gain certain information of the enemy. That 
on his return I would again send and notify all 
the Indians whether I would go, and meet the 
enemy below, or await them here ; and that I 
had not the smallest doubt, from their coura- 
geous conduct heretofore, but they would be 
all ready at a moment's warning." I then in- 
formed them of the news from Mackinaw, etc. 
Capt. Dease gave them a little powder and to- 
bacco, and they went off at 7 o'clock in the 
evening. In the course of the day, I went out 
to the inhabitants to purchase flour, but could 
procure none. Tiiere are only two days' rations 
of that article in the garrison. 

Thursday, Sept. 2-2d. — Capt. Dease assem- 
bled the inhabitants at this place, and appealed 
to them to try and procure flour. Want of horses, 
mills and time were the reasons they gave for 
not supplying that article. They promised to 
furnish what they can spare as fast as possible; 
but not with tiiat energy generally shown by 
Uritish subjects on like occasions. Capt. Dease 
preferred to go with ammunition to the Sauks. 
Friday, Sept. 2.3d. — Capt. Dease set off at 9 
o'clock in the morning with three men, accom- 
])anied by Thomas, the Sauk chief. Fired a few 
rounds from the guns to practice. 

Sunday, Sept. 25th. — Assembled the troops 
as usual, and immediately after went out and 
practiced at the target. Shot six rounds with 
the si.x-pounder, five with each of the three- 
pounders, and five with a swivel. Confined De- 
mairaix, a Michigan private, for refusing to do 
his duty when on fatigue, and one of tiie volun- 
teers for absolutely refusing to mount guard. 

Duncan Campbell made the best shot at the 

Monday, Sept. 2t!th.— Two men of the volun- 
teers, Kennet and Grignon, were confined in the 
guard-house by the officer of the day, for fight- 
ing when on guard. Established a court of 
inquir}' to be held to investigate the conduct of 
the men in the guard-room. Not being able 
to inflict corporal punishment, this method is 
adopted in case they are found guilty and merit 
punishment. They will be detained in confine- 
ment till an occasion offers to send them to 
Mackinaw. At 12 o'clock, the court of inquiry 
not finding Demairaix and Grignon guilty of 
the crimes they were charged with, I had them 

Tuesday, Sept. 27th. — At 10, a court martial 
was held, when Pierre Emare, private in the 
volunteers, was found guilty of neglect of duty 
in refusing to mount guard; but the court after 
condemning him to be sent to- Mackinaw in 
irons, to lose his pay from the time of his en- 
gagement, and to lose his share of the prize 
money, recommended him to the mercy of the 
commanding officer. Finding his crime pro- 
ceeded entirely through ignorance, and in con- 
sequence of his former good conduct, I ordered 
him to be released from confinement to-morrow 
morning, and return to his duty. At 2, a canoe 
arrived from below, with six Renards, among 
tliem Bardack, a chief, with news that the 
Americans, seen at the Riviere des Moines, 
were those driven back from the Rock river, 
who put ashore to burj' some of their dead. 

They also complained hard of Capt. Dease 
not giving them any powder on his way down. 
They also came to inquire about a report circu- 
lating amongst them, that the Sioux were assem- 
bled to go to war against the Renards and Sauks. 
This report was fabricated by the bands of the 
Jeune Homme, or Young Man, and Tonnerre 
Noir, or Hlack Thunder, Renard Yankee chiefs, 
to irritate those Nations against the Sioux, and 
by this means to disaffect our Sauks and Renards. 
I contradicted the report, and told them it 



sprung from the Little Corbeau having sent 
word to the Tonnerre Noir and Jeune Homme, 
when they heard of his coming down the 
river, to be out of the way, for his Father at 
Mackinaw told him to cut down everything 
American that he found in the road, no matter 
what color or size. In the evening interpreter 
Renville arrived from above. The Little Cor- 
beau, with 100 of his warriors, would not re- 
main above to hunt, lest his presence might 
be necessary here sooner than word could reach 
him from me. He therefore will be here to-nior- 
ro »•, and appears to be determined to remain 
till his Father arrives from Mackinaw. 

Weilnesday, Sept. 28th.— At 11 o'clock, the 
Little Corbeau arrived with 100 men and their 
families. With all his young men, he called 
upon me, g.ave me a soldier's pipe and every 
assurance of his fidelity, and insists, that when 
Robert Dickson arrives, he will go to work 
with his warriors, to exterminate those Indians 
about here that adhere to the Americans. It 
was with much difficulty that the Feuille or Leaf 
with the assistance of Mr. Renville, who I sent 
up for that purpose, prevented Little Corbeau's 
falling upon the Renards above this. However, 
he promises to be quiet till his Father, Robert 
Dickson, arrives; then he, with the Feuille, 
will insist upon beginning with the Gens de la 

I only said to him, that his having been to 
Mackinaw, rendered it unnecessary for me to 
give him any advice, or tell him his Father's or- 
ders; but requested him not to permit his young 
men to injure the people here in killing what few 
Americans yet remain. The Bardack, or Ren- 
ard, that I yesterday requested to remain to 
hear the news from the Little Corbeau himself, 
being present, he told them that what he had 
said respecting the American Indians was true; 
but as to speaking in general terms against 
others, he intended to say, that he regarded 
every Indian and white soldier, no matter of 
what color, as long as they were British sub- 
jects, as his brother — the rest his inveterate 

enemies, and would act with the greatest vigor 
towards both accordingly. He then said: "I 
wish to talk with my friend, the Bardack ; but 
as I am only on a visit in the house of a brother 
soldier, I can say nothing ; however, I will 
thank you not to go away to-day, and I will do 
myself the pleasure to invite you and talk over 
the affairs of our Nations in general, at niy own 
wigwam or lodge." I gave them each a glass 
of whisky, and among the whole, forty loaves 
of bread, which I got with much diffiulty. 

Thursday, September 29th. — At about .3 in 
the morning, it began to rain excessively, and 
thundered and lightened very much. At 10, 
the Little Corbeau sent for me to visit his 
lodge with the Renards. He related to the 
Renards all the talks he had got from his 
Father, saying he looked upon all people, no 
matter of what Nation, so long as they were 
British subjects, as his brethren. "I sent word," 
said he, "to the Renards, at the Riviere des 
Ayovois [lowas], when they heard of my com- 
ing down, to be out of the way, that my 
Father told me to strike everything American 
that came in my way; but the soldier you see 
here, together with the advice of the Feuille, 
have made me withhold my war-club till my 
Father arrives ; then if he says, strike, I will 
do so with the greatest good will and violence ; 
and if he tells me to withhold it, I will do it, 
but never without his request. My opinion is, 
the nearer we are related, the better we ought 
to love each other; and when relations fall out, 
our revenge ought to bo the more violent." 
Presenting the Renards with a pipe, he said : 
"Take this soldier's pipe, and report to all the 
Sauks and Renards my discourse and my deter- 
mination, and tell them from me that it is not a 
good time to be idle or sporting, but every man 
must follow my example. If any are my ene- 
mies, let them show themselves, and let my 
friends do the same'" 

He then gave them the pipe, and we ate a 
mouthful, after which the Renards answered as 
follows: "As to my Father's talks, we know 



tbatall that comes from his mouth is true and 
good. In every village we find some fools. I 
have frequently spoken to our relations, the 
Jeune Ilomme and Tonnerre Noir, but have not 
been ible to bring them to reason. I shall go 
to-morrow with your pipe, and deliver them 
your discourse. I hope they may open their 
ears ; but let the consequence be what it may, 
this is the last time I shall counsel them. If 
they listen to me, so much the better ; but if 
they absolutely persist in evil conduct, and will 
not leave it in our Father's power to give life to 
their women and children, I shall then be ready 
with you to follow our Father's directions. I 
have killed Americans, and am always awake, 
witli my cass-tete or tomahawk in my hand for 
that purpose." 

I then told them I was happy to see them 
give such friendly proofs of their relationship, 
and that as long as they coniinued in the same 
sentiments they should not want ; that I was 
not left here to give advice or counsel with my 
red brethren, but to take care of this fort and 
the i)eople about it; that I listened to every- 
thing that was going forward, and wrote it 
down, that their Father might see it, and that I 
had not the smallest doubt but their Father 
would be pleased with their present discourse. 
I tiien turned to the Reiiards, and told them 
when they heard the Little Corbeau speak, 
they iieard the talk of the whole Sioux Nation, 
and that he must be respected and hearkened to. 

Friday, September 30tii. — Nothing material, 
except two men, having been out hunting, saw 
three Fuant lodges at the entrance of the Ouis- 
consin, wiio told them that they had heard by 
other Indians that Robert Dickson was near the 
portage, and that the Puants were assembling 
at the portage to meet him. 

Saturday, Oct. 1st. — -At 7, Duncan began to 
make the chimneys. He is to have a man to 
assist him continually, and to get 400 livres 
for each chimney, to be finislied the 15th, and 
should be supplied with 100 pounds of pork, and 
three pounds of powder. At 8, two men, by the 

names of Pierre Vasseur and Jacques Ilebert, 
were confined in the guard house ; also a man by 
the name of Pierre Provancall, of the volunteers, 
the two former for having got out of the fort, 
through a port-hole, after 8 o'clock at night, the 
latter for having fallen asleep on his post when 
on guard; the whole to be examined on Monday 
next before a court of inquiry, to be appointed 
for that purpose. It appears that Pierre Vas- 
seur made use of mutinous language in the fort. 
At 12, a FoUe Avoine arrived from the portage, 
who brought word that an express had arrived 
there ten days ago, with news, that Robert 
Dickson was at the bay, when the courier from 
the bay left that place ; that he waa bringing a 
great number of barges and soldiers, and that 
no word was mentioned of the Puants. 

Sunday, Oct. 2d. — The troops assembled as 
usual ; practiced firing ; fifteen shots were tired ; 
only one struck the target ; Manaiger, a private 
of the IVIichigans, made the best sliots. 

Monday, Oct. 3d. — All hands on fatigue. The 
Sioux played at la crosse all day ; several got 
sore wounds from the ball and the hurl sticks. 
At 7, Antoine Brisbois arrived with a boat load 
of corn. Rained excessively. 

Tuesday, Oct. 4th. — Notiiing new. Got word 
that the Renards from above wished to come 
and deliver themselves up. This proceeds from 
the Little Corbeau's threats, and the same time 
having given a pipe to the Bardack, telling him 
his determination, as soon as his father arrives, 
to begin and strike on all those that are the 
American's friends. The .Jeune Homme arrived 
in the village, but did not show himself where 
I was. The Sioux continued playing at la 
crosse. Yesterday we buried an old woman by 
the name of Marie. She died the night before 
last. She had been poisoned. A great loss to 
this village, she being an excellent old doctress, 
particularly for children. She was of the Sioux 
Nation, but had been a long time amongst the 
white people. Hazy weather. 

Wednesday, Oct. 5th. — Several canoes of Ren- 
ards arrived from above. Called upon me with 



their flag twisted, in consideration of the Little 
Corbeau's pipe. I gave them my hand, and at 
the same time told them the reason why I did 
so. The Sioux finished playing at la crosse. 
It is with the greatest ditticulty the commissary 
procures provisions for the troops. 

Thursday, Oct. 6th. — A beautiful morning. 
At 9 o'clock one canoe with six men arrived 
from the Feuilles' band for a little powder and 
tobacco. Though much in want of those arti- 
cles, I have none to give them, and Capt. Dease's 
long stay below, obliges them to return in the 
morning without this very necessary assistance. 

Friday, Oct. Yth.^The Feuilles' young men 
did not depart, in expectations that Capt. Dease 
would return. At 12, released Pierre Vasseur 
and Jacques Hebert from the guard house, as 
also Pierre Provancall ; but confined them to 
the square on hard labor, the first for eight 
days, the second for six days, and the last for 
four days. The numerous Indian tribes about 
the village, quite destitute of tobacco and am- 
munition, are, in a manner, in distress, and Robert 
Dickson's arrival is much wished for by all ranks 
and colors. 

Saturday, Oct. 8th. — ^Capt. Dease's unexpected 
long absence obliges me to order Lieut. Graham 
to issue a little tobacco to the Sioux, who are 
absolutely in want. 

Fort McKay, Oct. 8, 1814. 
Lieut. Geahaji — 

Sir: — The absolute necessity thn Sioux are in 
for that article, and Capt. Dease's long absence, 
makes it necessary for me to order that you will 
immediately issue to Little Corbeau, twenty 
pounds of tobacco, of that which Capt. Dease 
left in your charge, to be distributed in the 
Feuille and Little Corbeau's bands, as they 
think proper. 

I am, etc., 

Thos. G. Anderson, 

Capt. Com'd'g. 

Sunday, Oct. 9th. — At 8, yesterday morning, 
Capt. Dease arrived from below. Brought in- 
terpreter Guillroy with him, who had been at 

the American fort at the rapids of the Riviere 
des Moines, and brings word that they have 
built a fort exactly opposite that river ; that it 
is about fifty yards square ; that they saw three 
men about the fort, two of whom he supposed 
were looking for honey ; the other was about 
their boats. They have uncovered their boats 
for lumber to cover their houses. 

Some of the volunteers refused to take corn 
for their rations; and when the troops were all 
assembled, I ordered those that had refused 
their rations out of the ranks, took away their 
guns and forbid every person giving them any 
support, or, at their peril, to harbor them, and 
gave orders to the officers of the Indian depart- 
Tnent to tell the Indians, that if any of them 
were found any distance from here, to bring 
them back, dead or alive. The were much sur- 
prised at the sentence, and immediately wished 
to apologize for it, but I would not hear them. 
I, at the same time, thanked the others for 
not allowing themselves to be led into such a 
disgraceful plot. 

Monday, October 10th — Capt. Dease distrib- 
uted powder and tobacco to the starving Indians 
here about; and in order to provide flour for 
the garrison, he at the same time was under the 
absolute necessity of exchanging powder for 
that articler The inhabitants not being able to 
thrash their wheat for the want of time, I was 
obliged to exempt them from working at the 

Tuesday, October 11th — Employed the day 
in writing letters to Mackinaw, etc.: 

Prairie d0 Chikn, Fort McKay, 
Oct. 11, 1814. 
LiBar. CoL. R. McDouall: 

Sir — I have the honor to communicate to you 
that yesterday a discovering paity, I had sent 
off some time ago, returned with news that five 
of the eight gun-boats, that were driven back 
from the Rock river (the other three are sup- 
posed to have continued their route to St. Louis) 
are at the entrance of the Riviere des Moines; 
and the Americans have built a fort there, on 



the east side of the Mississippi, about 140 
leagues from this, and about half way from this 
to St. Louis, two leagues below the fort of the 
Rapids. Interpreter Guillroy, who headed this 
jiarty of eight Sauks, reports to have been within 
musket shot of the fort for a whole day, and 
discovered throe men, two of which he supposed 
were looking for honey; and wishing to take 
them prisoners, prevailed upon the Indians not 
to fire upon them. By this means they unfortu- 
nately made their escape. The third man was 
walking about the boat, all of which they have 
uncovered, and made use of the boards to cover 
their houses. 

The fort is about fifty yardg square, and is 
picketed in with very large oak pickets, about 
twelve feet high, and is situated on a high hill 
that terminates at the water side where their boats 
are hauled up. They have cleared all the trees 
and brush from the back part of their fort to 
the distance of musket shot; but in front, to 
the water side, they have left a thick woocT 
standing, I suppose to cover their going for 
water. At the north side of their fort, about 
700 or 800 yards distance, is a small hill or ele- 
vation, which rather exceeds the fort in height, 
and entirely covers the approach of troops till 
the e.\tremity of the hill is attained. The Mis- 
sissippi at this place is about 1,000 or 1,200 
yards wide, and clear from islands. From the 
expeditious manner in which they have for- 
warded their work in so short a time, I am led 
to believe they must be about 500 strong. What 
their real plan is, I cannot say; but I conceive 
that their object is to assemble a strong force 
with a large supply of provisions, and either to 
attempt to come up here this fall late, or make 
* a grand attack in the spring, and use every 
means to destroy the Indian tribes on the bor- 
ders of the Mississippi. 

A Pottawatamie Indian, liaving been taken 
prisoner some time ago by the Americans, made 
liis escape about the time the eigiit gun-boats 
left St. Louis for this place, and reported to the 
Sauks, that an expedition of 500 men left St. 

Louis at the same time, with the eight gun- 
boats, to proceed up the Missouri* under a pre- 
tence of friendship with our Indians on that 
river, offer them terms of accommodation, give 
them a few goods and at the moment the In- 
dians would be distributing the goods among 
themselves, the Americans were to fall upon 
them and cut them to pieces. This was also 
the plan they were to have adopted at the Rock 
river, when they hoisted their white flag. Th's 
news, coming by an Indian to the other Na- 
tions, has a good effect, because it is firmly be- 
lieved; and convinces them what dastardly ene- 
mies they have to contend with; and did the 
Americans really wish or intend to come to 
terms with them, the Indians will be too appre- 
hensive of treachery, to admit them to come to 
a parley. 

There is not the smallest doubt but the ene- 
my aim at this place, and their first object will 
be (as they have now no hopes of making peace 
or destroying the Indians by their vile statagems) 
to drive them, if possible, off the borders of the 
Mississippi, to insure for themselves a free 
passage or communication with their boats to 
this place. This object obtained, they would 
with ease overcome our Indians, and in a short 
time make themselves very formidable here. 
To obviate this, I take the libe'-ty to observe 
that our Indians ought to be amply supplied 
with ammunition; and some troops with a heavy 
gun would be indispensably necessary to destroy 
their gun-boats, and make a breach in their 

The forts they build are constructed in such 
a manner, that 300 or 400 men knock up one in 
the course of three weeks, composed of wood, 
earth and stone, so strong as to bid defiance to 
the small guns that are here; and without regu- 
lar troops to cover the guns, and to show the 
example in scaling or making a breach, no 
attacking party can hope for success. For this 
purpose, in my opinion, a twenty-four pound 

* Lieut. Col. Henry Dodge's expedition up the Missouri, 
against n band of hostile Miamies, September, 1814, capture 
intr 162. 



carronade, being liglit, would be the most 
proper gun. 

Our troops are now on rations of corn one 
day, and flour and pork the next; but the hatter 
will, in a few days, be at an end. There are 
still a few cattle remaining; but I tliink it ad- 
visable to keep them for the present in case of 
an attack. The numerous bands of Indians that 
are daily assembling here, are anxious for Rob- 
ert Dickson's arrival, not only in hopes of re- 
ceiving supplies of ammunition, etc., to snjv 
port them during the winter, but in hopes that 
there may be- an expedition sent down the Mis- 
sissippi. The satisfaction afforded the Indians 
on hearing Robert Dickson's talk to them 
through Capt. Dease, was very great, and ani- 
mated them exceedingly. 

The mechanics I have employed about the 
garrison, etc., being poor people that live by 
their daily labor, I get them paid at short inter- 
vals by Mr. Brisbois, who has been very oblig- 
ing in that way, and has furnished every- 
thing in his power for the use of the govern- 
ment. I am particularly under obligations to 
him for furnishing flour to the troops during 
the time the inhabitants were getting in their 
harvest. The militia in general have been at- 
tentive, and have assisted, when occasion re- 
quired, to work at the garrison. The crop of 
wheat, and Indian corn, has, by no means, been 
so good as was expected; and if tlie troops are 
all obliged to winter here, there will be a defi- 
ciency of those articles. 

Four Sauks have this moment arrived from 
the Rock river, and report that a party of tlieir 
Nation and Kickapoos, that had been at war 
on the Missouri, returned six days ago to their 
village. After having attacked an American 
gun-boat about thirty leagues below the Riviere 
des Moines, and could make nothing of it, they 
proceeded to the Missouri, where they took two 
scalps and on their way back, saw six gun- boats 
coming up, but cannot say whether tliey are 
destined for the fort at Cap au Gris, twenty 
leagues above St. Louis, or the one at the Ri- 

viere des Moines. The Sauks, since Capt. 
Dease took them the supply of gunpowder, are 
daily detaching themselves by small parties to 
lay in wait for the workmen about the new fort. 

On examining the ordnance stores, sent out 
by Lance Corporal Haywood, there proves a de- 
ficiency of a whole case of three-pound round 
shot, thirty rounds less than mentioned fn 
Sergt. Pilmore's account. I take the liberty to 
enclose to you three different lists of officers 
and men that were here present, or on command 
on the 24th of July, the 24th of August, and the 
24th of September, and remark in the margin 
at what dates certain oflicers and men left this 
place. Not having the regular forms to make 
out the pay lists, etc., I trouble you with those 
lists to give an idea of the forces here. 

The principal expenditures have been for me- 
chanics, flour, and Indians, the whole of which 
will not exceed £ 350 currency, the exact 
amount of which I will transmit as soon as I 
get the regular form. Tliis garrison is much in 
want of a flag, and the articles of war. 
I have the honor to be, etc., 

Thos. G. Anderson, 
Capt. Comd'g. 

Wednesday, Oct. 12th. — Raining all day ex- 
cessively, prevented Lieut. Graham's marching. 

Tliursday, Oct. 1 3th. — Weather cleared up at 
10, and at 4 in the afternoon Lieut. Graham set 
off. In the evening, he having forgot some 
things, sent back a man with interpreter Berthe. 

Friday, Oct. 14th — Nothing of consequence, 
except that the vagabond, the Tonnerre Noir, 
arrived. He neither showed his flag, nor called 
upon me. 

Saturday, Oct. 15th — Having borrowed a keg 
of gun-j)Owder some days ago from Mr. Giard, 
for use in case of necessity, and flndiug no other 
means of encouraging the farmers to make flour, 
I gave it to Capt. Dease to exchange for flour 
or other provisions. 

Sunday, Oct. 16th — Practicing at the target 
was the means of expending much ammunition, 
left it off; but had the men drilled. In the eve- 



ning two Folles Avoine women arrived from 
Green Bay, one month on the passage. They 
say Robert Dickson was to be at the bay about 
the 1st of October; that he was bringing with 
him a number of Court Orielles, all the Folles 
Avoines, and upwards ef 100 soldiers; that the 
Nancy had taken two American vessels, and that 
the Sarcel was the first Indian that got on board, 
for which he got a wani-pum collar. 

Monday, Oct. 17th — Began the northeast 
block-house. The Renards made a straw man, 
or a man of straw, and challenged the Sioux to 
strike upon him, which they did, and gave them 
a number of their arms, utensils and fineries. 
Bought six cords of wood from Champegne, 
which I have not yet paid him for. In the eve- 
ning Lieut. Graham returned, bringing with 
him Mr. Rolette, from Mackinaw, who brought 
me letters from Col McDouall, etc. As time 
will not admit of my copying, they are filed in 
the desk. 

Tuesday, Oct. 18th. — Began to write letters, 
to send off Lieut. Graham with them. At 4 
o'clock in the afternoon, fired a royal salute for 
the good news from Mackinaw. 

Wednesday, Oct. 19th. — As I received orders 
from Col. McDouall to discharge the Green Bay 
volunteers, I did so. I got money from Mr. 
Rolette to pay them off. I issued a proclama- 
tion that neither provisions nor lead should go 
out of this post, knowing that an order was 
sent here from Green Bay, and the demands we 
had for those articles for the government, were 
my reasons. 

Thursday, Oct. 20th— The little Corbeau 
called a council, when he notified us that part of 
the Sioux were going to return home. Mr. 
Dcase, knowing that I had received four kegs 
of gun-powder for the Indians, asked me for 
one to give the returning Siouxs. Finding 
it requisite, I consented, and gave it to him. 
Explained to them in a few words what Col. 
McDouall had ordered me to do. Finished 
my dispatches for Mackinaw. My letters being 

too long to copy, I have filed them with other 

Friday, Oct. 21st — Louison Berthe, interpret- 
er in the Indian department, having been con- 
fined some days ago, by order of Capt. Dease, 
for having refused to obey orders, requested to 
speak with me, or to get permission to come 
and apologize for his past bad conduct. I sent 
him word I had nothing to do with him. 

Sunday, Oct. 23d. — Assembled the troops as 
usual, and informed them that they were to be 
mustered, and paid off to-morrow. 

Monday, Oct. 24th. — Mustered the troops, 
and paid the volunteers up to the 24th inst., 
Mr. Rolette having furnished the necessary 
money for that purpose. 

Tuesday, Oct. 25th.— Paid off the detachment 
of Michigan Fencibles up to the 24th inst., Mr. 
Rolette having furnished the necessary money 
for that purpose. 

Wednesday, Oct. 26th. — Capt. Dease having 
received a letter from Mr. Dickson, agent and 
superintendent of the western Nations, wherein 
he mentions to him to allow no person to inter- 
fere with him with respect to the Indians, I 
gave up to him everything in my charge be- 
longing to the Indian department, for which I 
received his receipt. 

Thursday, Oct. 27th.— Mr. Rolette having, 
since his arrival, kept selling rum to the troops, 
etc., I was under the necessity of putting up a 
proclamation forbidding the sale of spirituous 
liquors; for as long as this custom of allowing 
the men to get drunk lasts, nothing can be done 
about the fort. Mr. Aird arrived in the even- 

Friday, Oct. 28th, — Mr. Aird brought news 
that Lieut. Graham was promoted to captain in 
the Indian department, and Sergt. Keating as a 
lieutenant in the provincial volunteer artillery, 
but as this was only verbal, I made no orders 
on that score. 

Saturday, Oct. 29th. — Mr. Rolette having been 
ordered to supply one of his horses for fatigue to- 
day at thefort,and refusing to obey the order. 



Capt. Dease requested me to send a guard for the 
horse, which I did, because Mr. Rolette having 
refused, showed a bad example, and prevented 
a number of the inhabitants that were ordered 
to-day, from doing liieir duty. 

Sunday, Oct. .30th. — In the evening a party of 
Renards from below, at the Riviere du D'Inde,* 
brought some deer meat, which they disposed 
of in the village. 

Monday, Oct. 31st. — Mr. Aird having brought 
with him a keg of wine tapped it the day after 
his arrival, and was very obliging, it being an 
article not common in this place, in making al- 
most a general business of it, till there was no 
more. To-day the commissary got quite drunk, 
and was very abusive to every person, no mat- 
ter who. A drunken man is always annoying 
to a sober one, and as Mr. Honore came into 
ray house quite drunk, with an intention to be 
as abusive to me as to others, I put him out of 
doors; and as I had not drank a drop of liquor 
for some days, I could not put up with his 
abuse, and sent for the guard to take him away; 
but before the guard arrived, he was conveyed 
to his quarters. 

Tuesday, Nov. 1st. — Being all Saint's Day, 
no work was done. Three Puants arrived from 
Ouisconsin. No news. 

Wednesday, Nov. 2d. — Put up an advertise- 
ment ts procure wood and candles for the use of 
the garrison, as the season is advancing fast. 
Mr. Honore persisting in his obstinacy, I was 
under the necessity of depriving him of his em- 
ployment as commissary, for which purpose I 
wrote him a note, desiring him to deliver every- 
thing he had belonging to the commissary de- 
partment, and deliver it to Lieut. Brisbois. 

Thursday, Nov. 3d. — Rainy weather has 
been a great detriment to advancing the work 
of the fort. 

Friday, Nov. 4th. — Mr. Rolette sent off a 
barge to get provisions, to accomplish which, I 

•Turkey river, a tributary ol the Mississippi, about thirty 
miles below Prairie du Chien, on the Iowa side of the 
stream. On Mellish's map, of 1816, a Renard of Fox village 
is noted on the upper side of Turltey river, at its mouth. 

was obliged to let him have six men of the vol- 

Saturday, November 5th. — Three men of the 
volunteers got permission to return to their 
homes. Bought them a canoe and gave them 
rations. To conduct them, interpreter Honore 
got permission, with John Campbell, to ac- 
company them till they meet Robert Dickson. 

Sunday, November 6th.— Nothing of conse- 

Monday, November 7tli. — Tried every means 
to purchase wood for the fort. Mr. Rolette 
having offered to take the contract at the ex- 
travagant rate of twenty shillings per cord of 
wood delivered here, I deferred entering into 
the contract till I got very particular informa- 
tion from every individual about the place. 

Tuesday, November 8th. — Got a calash and 
went out to the farms to try and get tlie wood 
necessary for the fort, contracted for in small 
quantities, to give an opportunity to every per- 
son of gaining something during the winter ; 
but not finding any person that would under- 
take even a cord, 1 was obliged to contract with 
Mr. Joseph Rolette for 300 cords, at twenty 
shillings per cord. 

Wednesday, November 9ih — Being ration day, 
and the conductor having nothing but bustards, 
the Michigans did not wish to take one pound 
of that meat for their day's rations. However, 
as it is good, wholesome food, and agreeable to 
Mr. Rolette's contract willi the government 
they were obliged to accept it. 

Thursday,November lOth-Xothiiig new. Con- 
tinual rain and cold. 

Friday, November 1 1th — .John Campbell, who 
went from this place witli interpreter Honore 
to meet Mr. Dickson, returned, saying he had 
been to the portage, and getting no news of the 
re-inforcement, therefore returned. 

Saturday, November 12th — Violent rain. The 
Little Corbeau called a council and meditated 
going off; but Mr. Dease and myself, thinking 
it best that his band should remain a few days 
longer, in case Mr. Dickson should arrive, and 



might be wanted, they agreed to stay, and Mr. 
Dease gave them twelve bushels of com and 
forty loaves of bread. 

Sunday, November 13th — At 12 o'clock, three 
men, of the Gena de la Feiiille, arrived under 
the "Buffalo that Plays ;" they were received 
as secret enemies, and got no assistance from 

Monday, November 14th — A Folle Avoine 
canoe arrived and told us Mr. Dickson would 
probably be here in two or three days. 

Tuesday, November 15th — A violent storm of 
rain all d<ay. Nothing new. 

Wednesday, November 16th-Cold north wind. 
Not able to plaster in the fort. 

Thursday, November I7th — Continued very 
cold. Being ration day, I ordered one and a 
half pounds bustard meat be issued ; one pound 
of that meat not by any means being equal to 
that quantity of venison or beef. Bought a 
keg of high wines of .Mr. Brisbois, at $14 the 
gallon, so by reducing it to be able to give, in 
this cold weather, a gill of whisky to each man 
on fatigue, etc. 

Frida)^, November 18th — Paid the masons for 
making two chimneys, £49, 16s., 8d. At 10 
o'clock three Sauk canoes arrived, bearingeach a 
flag. They are all in winter quarters at the 
Riviere des Ayouais ; that is part, of three dif- 
ferent Nations, Sauks, Kickapoos and Renards. 
They bring word that the American fort, at the 
foot of the Riviere des Moines Rapids, was 
abandoned about the 20th of October. The 
Americans had burnt the fort and proceeded 
to the Illinois. 

Saturday, November 19lh — Continual rain and 
cold. A report was spread that the Sauks had 
turned against us, and that those seventeen 
Sauks that arrived on the 18th were come with 
an intention to take away the women from this 
place. After making every inquiry, found the 
report to be groundless. 

Sunday, November 20th. — At 10 o'clock the 
Sauks called a council, when they pressed very 
hard to get a trader to their village; but wo 

told them we were not masters of the traders, 
and, at any rate, there was only one, who 
bought a few goods merely to support the 
troops of this post ; but I was in daily expecta- 
tion of seeing their Fatlier, when no doubt they 
would receive ample support for the winter. 
But in the event of their Father's not coming, 
I would even go so far as to take powder from 
the big guns, to assist them. 

Monday, November 21st. — Last evening the 
Feuille, with twenty-one of his 3-oung men, ar- 
rived, in hopes of seeing Mr. Dickson. This 
evening twenty of the Gens de la Feuilles ar- 
rived — bad Indians, rather American inclined. 

Tuesday, Nov. 22d. — Called a council of all 
the Indians and whites here, wherein I told the 
traders to sell no powder to the Gens de la 
Feuilles; that in the event of Mr. Dickson's not 
coming, we should want all the powder the 
traders had, to furnish a little to our allies. The 
Feuille and Little Corbeau both spoke and ap- 
proved of what I had done, and abused the 
Gens de la Feuilles very much for their bad 
conduct in adhering to the Americans. 

Wednesday, iJov. 23d. — The I^ittle Corbeau 
called a council of all the Sauks, Kickapoos 
and Renards present, and gave them a pipe, 
assuring them of his friendship towards them, 
and his determination to support them in the 
war against the Americans. 

capt. andersox's military orders. 

Fort McKay, 1814. 

In case of an alarm, two shots will be fired 
from the six-pounder, when every man, the 
militia not excepted, will immediately repair 
to the garrison. 

When any Bri-tish flag arrives, or leaves this 
post, a swivel will be fired to salute such flag, 
unless otherwise ordered by the commanding 

August 1 1th.— Ordered that an interpreter and 
twelve of the volunteers go off early to-morrow 
morning, in order to bring up the barges that 
went adrift from this place, and, according to 
Indian reports, are lying on sand-banks a few 



leagues below. Seven men of the Michigan 
fencibles, with the artillery men, take lessons 
at the cannon daily, that is, immediately after 
parade, at 6 o'clock in the morning, and before 
parade in the evening. Three of the Michigans 
will be daily employed in making leaden balls 
for the guns and swivels. One of the officers, 
taken from the roster, with three interpreters, 
militia, or privates will do patrol duty every 
night. The patrol will be appointed by the 
officer of the day, and will walk around the 
village every two hours during the night, and 
will take up any stragglers that may be going 
about after — o'clock, n) matter who or what 
he may be, unless he can give the countersign. 

A countersign is to be given every night, by 
the commanding officer, to such officers as he 
may think necessary, and to the officer of patrol, 
and sergeant of the guard. Any officer or pri- 
vate, to whom the commanding officer may give 
the countersign, on being convicted of having 
divulged it to any person whatever, will be im- 
mediately put in close confinement, and kept 
there till an opportunity offers to send him into 
Mackinaw for his trial, as the enormity of the 
crime would be out of the reach of any court- 
martial that can be iield here for the present. 

August 12th. — No Indian, man, woman or 
child, will be allowed to enter the fort without 
orders from the commanditig officer. This is 
ordeied in consequence of there being, among 
the Renards particularly, many Indians who are 
bad subjects, and cannot be distinguished by 
some of the officers of the day. 

August 13th. — ^The absolute necessity of lend- 
ing every assistance to save the harvest, makes 
it absolutely requsite to allow the farmers to 
keep it their work, and not to assemble, as 
ordered, to-morrow at 10 o'clock; but they will 
make it a point to appear under arms every 
Sunday after this, at 10 o'clock in the morning, 
before the fort door, unless some urgency may 
require it to be otherwise ordered. 

August Hth. — Lieut. Brisbois having brought 
word that a fine large American boat, covered 

as a gun-boat, was lying a little above Fort Mad- 
ison, on the shore quite near the water, ordered 
that Lieut. Graham, with one interpreter 
and si.x men, go for the barge. When they 
reach the Rock river, or at any time during the 
voyage, if Lieut. Graham gets any certain news 
of the enemy's approach, he will either come 
back himself with the men, or send back, as he 
finds most requisite. When he gets to the Rock 
river, he will give a carrot of tobacco to the 
chiefs, soldiers and braves, and request of them, 
as many as he thinks fit to go with him, not 
only to assist in bringing up the barge, but to 
guard him against any of the Sauks, etc., that 
may be ill-disposed, from the Missouri; and if 
he can prevail on the Indians to assist him in 
bringing the barge up here, they shall be well 
paid when the re-inforcement arrives from 
Mackinaw; otherwise to try and run her up into 
the Rock river, that I can send for her from 
here. In case he can find no means of getting 
her up, he will set fire to and burn her, to pre- 
vent her falling into the enemy's hands. 

August 15th. — Orde-ed tliat a fatigue l)arty 
will, to-morrow, if the weather will permit, be 
employed in repairing a small breast-work at the 
lo«^er end, and one at the upper end of the vil- 
lage ; and that carpenters be employed in 
mounting a half-pound swivel. 

August 16th. — -The patrol will be suspended 
for the present, as a jiarty has gone down be- 
low, and will keep directly in the enemy's way; 
but the principal object of this is, to afford ev- 
ery means possible to assist in getting in the 
harvest. We have only a very short allowance 
of flour, three barrels remaining. To-morrow 
the artificers will be employed in widening the 
passage through the fort, in order to run out 
the guns on three field carriages. 

August I7th. — The artificers will comiuence, 
to-morrow, making scaffolds for the sentries, to 
elevate them above the pickets. Ordered that 
the voulunteers, when on guard, if they are not 
attentive to their duties, as sentries ought to be, 




shall be assigned to the same duty the next day, 
and so continue till they are attentive. 

August 18th. — To-morrow morning at 6 
o'clock, a party of officers and interpreters are 
to begin and practice the use of the three-pound- 
er, commencing at 6 o'clock, until otherwise or- 
dered, the exercise to be of two hours duration 

August 19th. — Ordered, that the commissary 
take every means to get in flour as fast as possi- 
ble. As there are no articles in the store, that 
will answer the inhabitants in exchange for 
their flour, he will give orders on Michael 
Brisbois, Sr., for any flour he may purchase, till 
further orders. 

August 20th. — Having the other three-pound- 
er mounted, it is ordered thatti^ie two guns drill 
in brigade, twice every day, Sunday excepted, 
and to practice sham battles. The bombardier 
will be active in getting all the guns and swiv- 
els in the highest order, as expeditiously as pos- 

August 2 1st. — Ordered that black-smiths be 
employed to do such work as is necessary about 
the guns. 

August 22d. — Ordered, that all accounts, of 
flour and other articles borrowed, be settled, or 
made out, by the 25th inst. 

August 2-3d. — Ordered, that as Chesier, the 
black-sinilh, is idle, and does not work as be 
ought to do, another black-smith be employed, 
and having no tools, will make use of Chesier's 
shop, etc., till the work necessary about the 
guns be finished. 

August 24th. — Ordered, that two lieutanants 
of the Indian department, namely, I,ieul. Gra- 
ham and Lieut. Brisbois, and three interpreters, 
Augustin Rock, I. B. Guillroy, Francois Bou- 
clire (lit La Malice, with Bombardier Keating, 
eight Michigan fencibles, and sixteen of the 
volunteers, with a brass three-pounder, and 
two swivels in the gun-boat, and a barge, be all 
ready to march the 27th inst., on an expedition 
against the Americans, in order to meet them 
on their way up here at the Rock river, and as- 

sist the Sauk Nation of Indians in the preserva- 
tion of their wives and children. 

Lieut. Graham will take the command. The 
commissary will issue fifteen days full rations 
of pork, and five days full rations of flour. In- 
terpreter Renville will leave this place early to- 
morrow morning, and proceed with all haste to 
the chief of the Feuilles, and inform him of the 
expedition going below, and tell him that I re- 
quest he will come down immediately, with as 
many of his young men as he can possibly 
spare, and go down and assist the Sauks; and at 
the same time to tell him to send word to the 
Little Corbeau, etc., to move this way immedi- 
ately; but to remain about the Prairie a La 
Crosse, till further orders, and as soon as the 
Little Corbeau arrives there, he will send word 
and let me know, and Mr. Renville will return 
here as soon as possible. 

August 25th. — Ordered, that the Sauk chief, 
Thomas, leave this place to-morrow morning, 
for the Sauks at Rock river, to inform them, 
that an expedition will leave here on the 27th, 
for that place. Lieut. Graham will have every- 
thing ready to march at 8 o'clock on that day. 
The men in general, going on the expedition 
below, are destitute of shirts. It is, therefore, 
ordered, that the commanding officers will give 
to such as he finds in absolute want, an order 
on Mr. Brisbois, to furnish them such necessities, 
and it will be deducted from their pay, when 
they are paid. 

Aug. 26th. — Ordered, that the commissary aug 
meiit the rations for the expedition going below, 
giving each man ten -ounces of pork, and one 
and a half pounds of flour. Those that remain 
here, will have six ounces of pork, and two 
pounds of flour. 

Aug. 27th. — Ordered that do the 

duty of interpreter, from this date, till further 
orders, and that he receive the pay and allow- 
ances that other interpreters do. The Sioux 
and Renards will leave this place to-morrow 
morning, to go and join the e.xi)cdition to the 
Rock river. The commissary will furnish the 




Sioux six bushels of wheat, and the Renards 
four, for their provisions, till they reach the 

Aug. 28th. — Ordered that Capt. Grignon pre- 
pare himself to leave this place, to-raonow morn- 
ing at 10, for Mackinaw, with dispatches, and 
that an interpreter go, expressly to notify the 
Little Corbeau's band that the enemy are coming 
up, and direct him to camp somewhere about 
the Prairie a La Crosse, till further orders. The 
militia having been ordered to parade at 10 
o'clock this morning, many of them came with- 
out guns, and some of them did not come at all. 
It is, therefore, ordered that when in future 
the militia are called out, if they do not all ap- 
pear at the hour appointed, with their arms, 
those disobeying such orders shall be liable to 
a fine of fifteen dollars, to be levied on their 
goods and chattels, otherwise to be confined in 
the guard house, during the commanding offi- 
cer's pleasure. 

Aug. 29th. — Ordered that, as Capt. Grignon 
is now gone, and no officer of the bay volunteers 
here, what few of his company remain be in- 
cluded in Capt. Anderson's company, till fur- 
ther orders. 

Aug. 30th. — That two men be employed saw- 
ing boards and planks for the use of the garri- 

Aug. .31st. — Ordered that interpreter Frenier, 
with three mei), set off to-morrow morning, to 
go and inform the Little Corbeau, as mentioned 
in orders of the 28th inst., lest the express the 
Feuille sent should fail. 

Sept. 1st. — Ordered that the commissary tell 
the inhabitants, if they do not be more active in 
making flour for the use of the troops, that men 
will be placed in their barns and mills by the 
commanding officer to thrash and grind their 
wheat, for the use of the garrison. That the 
men so employed will be paid from the produce 
of their flour, and for the balance the govern- 
ment will be accountable to the different indi- 
vidual owners. 

Sept. 2d. — Ordered, that interpreter Grignon 
leave this place to-morrow morning with four 
men to take flour to the detachment gone to the 
Rock river. 

Sept. 3d. — Ordered, that the commissary ex- 
change with the inhabitants, as often as the 
opportunity may oflier, whisky for flour or wheat, 
till further orders. 

Sept. 4th. — Ordered, that no person be allowed 
to go into the fort, except those accustomed to 
do duty, without the permission of the officer of 
the day. 

Sept. 5th. — Ordered, that a mare and colt, 
belonging to one Fontaine, a Canadian, who left 
here three years ago, and ever since has resided 
in Illinois, be taken and broken in, for the use 
of the garrison. 

Sept. 6th. — Ordered, that the fort gate be 
shut every evening at 8 o'clock ; and the guards 
be changed at 7 o'clock in the morning, till fur- 
ther orders. 

Sept. Tth. — Ordered, that the four Sauks, who 
brought letters from Lieut. Graham, leave this 
place to-morrow morning, to return to the Rock 

Sept. 14th. — Ordered, that a barge leave this 
place under interpreter Rock's command, with 
eight volunteers, and the three men that came 
in the wooden canoe from the portage, to go 
and bring the ordnance stores, etc. Also, that 
Lance Corporal Heywood be attaclied to the 
guns, under Sergt. Keating, aud tlial the officers 
and men, from the detachment to the Rock 
river, return to their duty in the garrison, as 

Sept. 18th. — Ordered, that the Michigan fenci- 
bles, and Lance Corporal Haywood, of the 10th 
Volunteer band, with ten volunteers and seven 
militia, will be attached to the guns, and be 
drilled daily, and now and then practice firing, 
under Sergt. Keating, of the Royal artillery. A 
sufficient number of men will be selected from 
the volunteers and militia, as mentioned above, 
to man the six-pounder, and the two three- 



pounders. Such men will be exempt from other 
duty till otherwise ordered. 

Ordered, that eight of the volunteers, in- 
cluding one sergeant and one corporal, mount 
guard daily; that the guards be relieved at 
7 o'clock every morning. That the guards 
take up their quarters, in the garrison, for 
the time being, and not absent themselves, 
on any pretense, wathout the permission of 
the officer of the day, whose business it will 
be to attend when the guards are relieved 
and see that all the men are as clean as 
circumstances will admit of ; and see that they 
have on them a cartouchbox and bayonet, that 
their guns are in good order,and that the sentries 
are regularly relieved by the corporal. 

Ordered, that carpenters be employed, and a 
party of the volunteers, when not otherwise 
on duty, together with a party of militia, be 
kept on fatigue, in order to repair the fort. 
Wlien any of the inhabitants or militia are or- 
dered with a team of horses or oxen, a reasona- 
ble allowance will be made them for such team. 
The militia, when on fatigue (provisions being 
scarce), will furnish themselves with food, for 
which an e(|uiva1ent in pay will be made them. 
All men on actual duty will I'eceive one gill of 
whisky per day, till otherwise ordered. 

Lieut. Porlior, of the volunteers, and Lieuts. 
Graham and Brisbois of the Indian department, 
will each in turn, do the duty of officer of the 
day, having an eye on the garrison in general, 
keeping everything in order, and reporting to 
the commanding officer, the state of the new 
guards when mounted, as well as every other 
material circumstance coming to his knowledge. 

Sept. 19th. — Ordered, that the men drilling at 
the guns, under Sergt. Keating of the Royal artil- 
lery, be all present, at the hours of 7 o'clock 
in the morning, and .3 o'clock in the afternoon ; 
and should any be absent, Sergt. Keating will 
report them to the offiier of the day, who will 
report them to the commanding officer. 

Ordered, that the commissarj' attend at 7 
o'clock every morning at the fort, to issue ra- 

tions of whisky, agreeable to a requisition 
signed by the officer of the day. 

Sept. 23d. — Ordered that four shots be fired 
from each of the three guns, every Sunday, till 
otherwise ordered. A target will be placed in 
a convenie'it place to prevent any accident, and 
at the same time so placed as to be able to re- 
cover the round shot. 

Sept. '26th — Ordered, that a court of inquiry 
be held in Fort McKay, at 10 o'clock this 
morning, to inquire into the conduct of Pierre 
Emerie, of the volunteers, and Solomon Demai- 
raix, of the Michigans, both privates, who were 
confined in the guard house yesterday, for diso- 
bedience of orders. Also to examine Pierre 
Kennet and Pierre Grignon, Jr., both privates 
in the volunteers, for quarreling and fighting 
while on guard this morning. The court to 
consist of Lieuts. Graham and Brisbois, of the 
Indian department, and Lieut. Porlier of the 
volunteers, Lieut. Graham to be president. 

Ordered, that no whisky be exchanged for 
any other article; but what whisky now remains 
will be kept for the use of the guards and fa- 
tigue parties, unless the commissary may re- 
ceive other orders from the commanding officer. 

The court of inquiry finding that Demairaix, 
of the Michigans and Kennet and Grignon of 
the volunteers, who had been confined, were 
not guilty of a crime to merit punishment, they 
are therefore released from the guard-house. 
But Pierre Emerie, of the volunteers, acknowl- 
edging his crime, a court martial is ordered to 
be held to-morrow morning at 10 o'clock for his 
trial. The court to consist of Lieut Graham, 
of the Indian department, president, and Lieut. 
Brisbois of the Indian department, and Lieut. 
Porlier, of the volunteers, members. 

Sept. 28th. — A court martial, for the trial of 
Pierre Emerie, of the volunteers, having been 
held this day, of which Lieut. Graham was 
president, and Lieuts. Brisbois and Porlier, 
members, where he, the said Emerie, was found 
guilty of disobedience of orders, in refusing to 
mount guard. The court condemned the pris- 



oner to be sent in irons to Macliinaw,to lose bis 
pay for tbe time of his service, and to lose bis 
share of tlie prize money taken in tlie capitu- 
lation of Fort McKay. But being recommended 
to the clemency of tbe commanding officer, 
and tbe court being of the opinion that bis dis- 
obeying orders proceeded more through igno- 
rance, than a wish to be mutinous, the com- 
manding officer, therefore, orders, that be be 
released from confinement, and immediately 
return to bis duty. 

October,,lst. — Ordered, that on Monday next, 
every man not on guard, etc., be employed on 
fatigue, to finish as soon as possible, tbe re- 
pairing of the fort. Also that a court of inquiry 
be held on Monday next at 12 o'clock to exam- 
ine into the crimes, for which Pierre Vasseur 
and Jacques Hebert, of tbe Micbigans, were 
confined this morning, Lieut. Duncan Graham 
to be president, and Lieuts. Brisbois and Por- 
lier, members. 

Oct. 3d. — Ordered, from to-morrow morning, 
only half rations of liquor will be issued to tbe 

Oct. Vtb. Ordered, that Pierre "Vasseur and 
Jacques Hebert, both privates in the Michigan 
fencibles, be released from the guard-house, 
and both confined to tbe square at hard labor, 
tbe former for eight days, and tbe latter for six 
from this date. And that Pierre Provancall, of 
the volunteers, who was confined for having al- 
lowed the above mentioned Michigan fencibles 
to go out of the garrison at night without leave, 
be released from the guardhouse, and confined 
to hard labor in the square for four days, after 
which, all shall return to their duty, as soon as 
their respective terms of bard labor have ex- 

Oct. 8th. — Ordered, that one day's rations be 
issued as usual to the troops, and one of hulled 
Indian corn; that is, every other day one quart 
of corn be issued, in place of pork and flour, till 
further orders. 

Oct. 11th — Ordered, thatLient. Graham, with 
interpreter Berthe, and five men, namely, E. 

Piche, Bourdon, Langlos, La Honde and Le 
Mire, leave this place to-morrow morning with 
dispatches for Mackinaw,tobe delivered to Lieut. 
Grignon at Green Bay, from whence they will 
return here immediately. 

Ordered, tbnt there will be no more practic- 
ing witli the guns at a target,till further orders. 

Oct. 15tb. — Ordered, that an ox be bought 
and that four day's rations be issued at a time, 
that is, one pound of beef, and two pouiids of 
flour, for one day, and one quart of corn for the 
second day, and so on alternately. 

Oct. 18th. — Ordered, that at 4 o'clock this 
afternoon, a royal salute be fired, and that all 
the troops and Indians be present. Immedi- 
ately after which, a council will be held to in- 
form the troops and Indians tbe news from 

Oct. 20th. — Ordered, that the troops be mus- 
tered, on the 24th inst., at 10 o'clock in the 
morning; and on tbe 25th, as Mr. Rolette has 
offered to furnish money for that purpose, they 
will be paid up to the 24th. 

Oct. 21st. — Ordered, that Lieut. Brisbois, of 
the Indian department, act as overseer of the 
workmen at the fort, for which be shall be en- 
titled to receive an additional allowance of pay, 
until further orders, of five shillings per day. 

November 3d. — Ordered, that Mr. Honore, 
lately acting commissary, for which he re- 
ceived tbe pay of a lieutenant in tbe volun- 
teers, be suspended from that duty and pay till 
further orders. This is ordered, from bis hav- 
ing, when drunk, made use of most disre- 
spectful and abusive language to the command- 
ing officer, in defiance of all military order and 

Ordered, that Lieut. Brisbois, of tlie Indian 
department, receive to-morrow morning of Mr. 
Honore, all the accounts and .stores lately in 
his charge as commissary, till further orders. 

*This probably refers to the repulse of the Americans in 
their attack on that place, under Majs. Croirhan and 
Holmes, Aug-. 41h, 1814, and the subsequent capture of two 
American vessels enfrag:ed in blockading' Mackinaw, as men- 
tioned in Lient. Col. McDouall's letter to Capt. Anderson, 
Sept. a3d, 1814. 



Nov. 0th — Ordered, that the militia be ex- 
empt from appearing in parade in future on 
Sundaj's, till further orders. 

Nov. I2th.— Ordered, that no more drilling 
l)e practiced for the present, because the men 
are continually on fatigue, and the rainy season 
has made the parade-groun d too muddy. 

Nov. 17th. — Ordered, that a keg of high 
wines be bought, and that the acting commis- 
sary issue to each man on actual duty one gill 
of liquor, till further orders. Also, as bustard 
meat is not equal in bulk or sustenance to oilier 
meat, that one and a half pounds of that meat 
must be issued per ration, till further orders. 

Nov. ^Sth. — Ordered, that the troops at- 
tached to this garrison, when not on duty may, 
witli the permission of the officers of their re- 
s[>eclive corps, be allowed to work for the in- 
habitants of this post, till further orders. 


List of Canadian voyageurs who volunteered 
llieir services, at Mackinaw, June 21, 1814, to 
go to Prairie du Cliien, on an expedition against 
the xVniericans. 

Joseph Rolette, Thomas G. Anderson, Joseph 
Polvin, Benjamin Roy, Ed. Picke, (lit W. G. 
Stursman, Barnabe Sans Soisi, S. St. Germain, 
Pierre Grignon, Pierre Lambert, Jacques Sav- 
ard, Jean B. Snyer. Pierre Gauslin, Etienne 
Dyon, Ant. Gauthern, Amable Tourpin, Jacques 
Lemire, John Campbell, Ant. Asselin, P. Prov- 
ancall, Jean B. Emerie, Baptiste Berthe, An- 
toine Bercier, Louis Provancall, Francois La 
Chappelle, Gabriel La Londe, Jean M. Duch- 
arme, J. 15. Faribault, J. B. Parant, Gabriel 
Danie, Louis Bourdon, Etienne Serare, Joseph 
Ouitelle, Luke Dubois, Francois S<. Maurice, L. 
Dejrne, Sol. Bellangc, Louis Desognier, Fran- 
cois Frenere, Emanuel Ranger, Joseph Filion, 
Henry Fleure, Colin Campbell, Alexis Larose, 
Amable Gervais, Jean B. Bouchard, Francois 
Hoivin, Jacques Laurent, Michael Gravelle, 
Pierre Emerie, Colish Veaux, Antoine Felix, 
St. 1>. Philip, Joseph Dagenais, Joseph Minette, 
Prudent Langlois, Pierre Crocbier, Amable J. 

Durans, Antoine Dabin, Louis Genereux, An- 
toine Asselin, Jean Tivierge, Joseph Tivierge, 
Pierre Robedeau, Joseph Dechan, Louis Iloiiore, 
Jacques Joseph Porlier. 

The under named men were here present, or 
on command the 24th of August, 1814: 

Bombardier, Royal artillery. James Keat- 

Michigan Fencibles. Sergeant: Francis Roy. 
Corporal: Noel Bondvielle. 
Privates: Michael Donais, Louis Vasseur, Solo- 
mon Demairaix, Joseph Lariviere, Jacques Pari- 
siens, Oliver Degerdin, Jacques Hebert, La- 
cenne Dupuis, Francois Supernant. Pierre 

Canadian Volunteers from Mac/iinaw. Ser- 
geants: Amable Dusang, Henry Fleurie. 

Corporals: Antoine Dabins, Jean B. Emerie, 
Privates: Manuelle Pichi, Seraphin St. Ger- 
main, Pierre Lambert, Jacques Savard, Jean B. 
Loyer, Jacques Lamire, John Campbell, Antoine 
Asselin, Baptiste Berthe, Antoine Bercier, 
Louis Provancall, Francois La Cliapelle, Gabriel 
or William Lalonde, Jean M. Ducharme, Louis 
Bourdon, Etienne Serare, Luke Dubois, Fran- 
cois St. Maurice, Louis Dagenais, Solomon Bel- 
lange, Louis Desognier, Emanuel Range, Joseph 
Filion, Colin Campbell, Amable Gervais, Jean 
M. Bouchard, Francis Boivin, Jacques Laurent, 
Michael Gravelle, Pierre Emerie, Antoine Felix, 
Joseph Dagenais,. Joseph Minette, Prudent 
Langlois, Pierre Crochier, Louis Genereaux, 
Jean Tivierge, Joseph Tivierge, Pierre Robi- 
deau, Joseph Dechampes. 

Pierre Kennet, a man that volunteered his 
services for his country on the 2d of August, 
1814, at this place, is not included in the list 
sent to Mackinaw. 

Canadian Volmite&s from the Bay. Sar- 
geant: Laurent Filey. 

Corporal: Amable Grignon. 

Privates: Joseph Courvalle, Labonne Dorion, 
Alexis Crochier, .Joseph Deiieau, Narcis.-e De- 
laune, Pierre Chalifou, Jean B. Latouch, Pierre 



L'Allement, Etienne Bantiere, Francis Fren- 
iere, Pierre Grignon, Jr., Pierre Ocliu. 

Note of officers, etc., here present, or on 
command, the 24th of August, 1814. 

Captain: Thomas G. Anderson, Com'd'g the 

Lieutenants: Pierre Grignon, Sr., Joseph 
Jacques Porlier. 

Indian Department. Lieutenants: Duncan 
Graham, Michael Brisbois. 

Interpreter: Louis Honore, Acting Commis- 

Lieutenants: Joseph Renville, Jean B. Guill- 
roy, Pierre Grignon, Jr., Joseph Rock, Sr., 
Augustin Rock, Jr., Francois Bouche. 

Captain: Francis Dease, Prairie du Chien 

, The above is a correct statement of the forces 
in Fort McKay, on the 24th of August, 1814. 
Thos. G. Andekson, Capt. Com'd'g. 
Fort McKay, Sept. 18, 1814. 

[Endorsed on the back of the paper: ] 
Paul L'Allement, 
Claude Laframboise, 
Michael Armaed. 
Michillimackinac, 23d Sept., 1814. 
To Captain Anderson: 

Sir: — I have had the honor of receiving your 
letter of the 29th ult., by Capt. Grignon, com- 
municating the information of the enemy's 
indicating an intention of ^.ttacking your post. 
I, however, am inclined to believe that their 
object for the present is confined to revenging 
themselves on the Sauks by an attempt to de- 
stroy iheir corn fields and villages, and I am 
sanguine in my hopes, from the formidable body 
of Indians assembled at the Rock river, that it 
will be completely frustrated and punished, as 
it ought. 

I greatly approve of your having sent a de- 
tachment down the river in aid of the Indian 
force. I am convinced, it is the best mode of 
defending your post; and you cannot exert 
yourself too much in encouraging the Sauks, 
and affording them every assistance that is in 

your power to give. By that means you keep 
the war at a distance; and if the proper spirit 
is cherished and kept up amongst the Indians, 
I flatter myself the enemy will not be able to 
force such a formidable barrier. I fear it will 
be difficult to preserve unanimity, and that cor- 
dial co-operation with each other which is so 
necessary, and yet so hard to bring about, 
where they are numerous. You will, of course, 
see the necessity of making this your constant 
study. The ammunition sent by Corpl. Hey- 
wood will arrive very opportunely, and prove 
for the present a supply fully equal to the de- 
mand; but unfortunately we had neither arms 
nor tobacco to accompany it. I am in hopes 
we stall be able very soon to send supplies of 
those articles with Mr. Dickson, who remains 
here until the arrival of the Indian presents, 
which have been delayed in consequence of the 
attack and blockade of this island. The latter 
inconvenience we happily got rid of, by cap- 
turing, with our detachment of seamen, assisted 
by soldiers from the garrison, both the vessels 
which the enemy left for that purpose; for us a 
very fortunate event, which, I trust, will enable 
us to not only receive our Indian goods, but 
an adequate supply of provisions. As I am ex- 
pecting a re-inforcement in the course of a week 
or ten days, in which, I trust, I shall not be dis- 
appointed, it will then be in my power to de- 
tach an officer and about thirty men to Fort 
McKay to winter. 

You will observe that it will wholly depend 
on my getting the men which I wrote for, and 
fully expect. With them I shall strain every 
nerve to furnish you with whatever can be 
spared from this place, as well as Indian sup- 
plies, as arms, powder and tobacco. 

Mr. Rolette has contracted to supply the gar- 
rison, to the number of sixty men, with pro- 
visions for a year. When more, for any unfore- 
seen emergency, is required, it must be pro- 
vided on the best terms you can procure, taking 
care that you strictly conform to the mode 
pointed out for your guidance by Mr. Asst. 



Dept. Com. Gen. Monk, at this place; and that 
the utmost accuracy is observed in your certifi- 
cates as to the number of men victualed. To 
enable Mr. Rolette to fulfill his contract, you 
will transfer to him the salt now in possession, 
in whatever way you deem best, as you in your 
capacity of commandant must regulate every- 
thing as will most tend to the good of the ser- 
vice. What chimneys, fuel, or other indispen- 
sable articles may be required, you will direct 
to be furnished accordingly, never deviating 
from the established rule of procuring every- 
thing at the most reasonable rate. Mr. Rolette 
has been advanced £21)0, on account of his con- 
tract, the terms of which are sent you, and 
which must be scrupulously adhered to. You 
will, of course, ascertain that strict justice is 
done to the troops; and that the bills drawn 
upon the commissary here, are in conformity to 
the exact amount of provision supplied. 

The dissensions and disaffection, which you 
mention as existing among some of the Indians, 
must ever be expected among so many different 
tribes, and where the enemy are making contin- 
ual efforts to seduce them. Our efforts must be 
as great to reclaim such as have erred; or when 
that cannot be effected, to take any precaution 
to prevent their doing mischief. Hut above all 
you must not fail to pacify the murmuring and 
loyal part of them, who faithfully adhere to our 
interest, by pointing out to them the solid ad- 
vantages which cannot fail to result from a 
perseverance in such praiseworthy conduct; 
that the numerous forces and fleets of their 
Great Father, the King, are attacking the ene- 
my with decided advantage along the whole 
Line of their sea coast; that in the Canadas our 
troops are embodied in great numbers; that the 
American army at Fort Erie is surrounded by 
the British, with scarcely the (lossihility of es- 
caping, and this campaign has not only the pros- 
pect of ending gloriously, but the next still more 
so, there being little doubt that Detroit and 
Amhertsburgh will again fall into our hands. 

You will represent these particulars to them 
from me, in the most impressive manner you 
can, telling them my firm conviction that they 
will oppose the most determined resistance to 
the shameful encroachments of the'enemy, and 
signalize themselves in defense of their wives 
and children, and of the lands with which they 
are intrusted from their forefathers. You may 
assure them of my doing everything in my power 
to support them in so just a cause, and that from 
the recent circumstances of our blockade, I can- 
not this season supply their wants as I could 

Yet in ammunition, it will in some measure 
be made up, and next year much more will be 
in our power. Impress strongly on their 
minds the important fact, that the king, their 
Great father, is determined to see justice done 
them, and not to make peace with the enemy 
until their lands are restored, and complete 
security given that they are not again molested 
or invaded." 

These matters must necessarily give them 
courage. You will present my best wishes for 
their success to La Feuille and the Little Cor- 
heau, and that I have the fullest reliance upon 
their zeal and courage in so just a war; and that, 
if necessary, they will bring down all their 
young men to your assistance. I shall use 
every exertion to send Mr. Dickson with the 
Indian presents, I hope, accompanied by a de- 
tachment of troops, as soon as possible after the 
latter arrive. In the meantime, I send by Mr. 
Rolette four barrels of powder for the Indians. 
You will know it from his, that belonging to 
him being marked with his initials. 

With regard to the volunteers, those belong- 
ing to the bay being, I understand, greatly 
wanted, you will, if their services can be dis- 
pensed with, permit them to return, of course, 
omitting them in your pay-list from the 
day their service ceases. The remainder will 
certainly be required, at all events, till relieved; 
but you may render their garrison duty as easy 
and as little harassing to them, as possible, 



assuring them all at the same time, that I am 
higlily pleased with their behaviour and services 
they have rendered. As they so meritoriously 
contributed to llie recovery of the Prairie du 
Chien and Fort McKay, so, I doubt not, they 
will as gallantly exert themselves to defend 
their conquest. I am perfectly satisfied hitherto 
with your measures, but particularly with send- 
ing the gun and detachment to support the In- 

The war must be kept at as great a distance 
from you as possible. You must hold a high 
language to the Indians, such as our great power, 
and unparalleled successes in general, and our 
commanding attitude in the Canadas in particu- 
lar, justify and require. 

Let the bright prospect which we may fairly 
anticipate, leave not a thought amongst any of 
you but of success and victory, and animate the 
whole in such a manner as will prevent the 
enemy from ascending the Mississippi this sea- 

Next year we shall, I hope, be able to afford 
more effectual support, and the enemy will then 
find himself assailed in all directions, and have 
fully enough upon his hands. I have the honor, 

(Signed,) Rob't McDouaix, 

Lieut. Col. Com'd'g. 

P. S. As commandant, no person is to in- 
terfere with your command. I doubt not but 
you are well supported by the officers under you, 
particularly Lieuts. Graham and Brisbois, and 
Serg't Keating of the artillery. You will not 
fail to mention to me such as, from their zeal 
and good conduct, merit my approbation, and 
such rewards as may heretofore be in my power 
to bestow. 

Capt. Anderson to Lieut. Col. R. McDouali.. 
Peairie des Chiens, Fort McKay, 
Oct. 18th, 1814. 

Sir : — I had the honor to receive your favor 
of the 2-3d Sept., by Mr. Rolette, and as Lieut. 
Graham, whom I liad sent off with dispatches to 
you, on the 13th inst., haying returned with 

Mr. Rolette here, affords me an early opportu- 
nity of returning you my thanks for your ap- 
probation of the measures I have adopted in the 
defense of this post. 

Long ere this you will have received my detail 
of our successes at the Rock river. Though no 
prizes were made, yet the favorable result of that 
expedition has been of the first consequence in 
the preservation of this country ; for had the 
enemy put their design in execution, and had 
murdered the Sauks in that inhuman and 
American-like manner, as was their intention, 
as mentioned in my letter of the 1 Ith inst., the 
Indian tribes on the Mississippi would not have 
been easily brought to understand or believe 
that our government's intention to support 
tliem is real. In fact, the Indian character is 
such that when a promise is made them, and 
not fulfilled at the time appointed, they imme- 
diately, without paying attention to the circum- 
stances that cause the disappointment, attribute 
it to design, and a conditional promise with 
them is construed into a real or positive one. 

The unforeseen and unfortunate delay of the 
Indian goods, notwithstanding Capt. Dease's 
and my indefatigable endeavors to explain to 
the Indians from whence it proceeds, is seri- 
ously injurious to the confidence placed by 
them ; and if, unfortunately, anything should 
tu}n up to prevent Robert Dickson coming out 
here, and the supplies not reaching us, one-half 
of the Indians must inevitably starve to death. 
This last circumstance, which they themselves 
are continually observing to me, ought and 
would, to a set of rational beings in their situ- 
ation, convince them, that without the supplies 
they receive from the British government, they 
cannot exist. 

Mr. Rolette, having contracted for, and being 
able immediately to commence the supplying 
the garrison, is very opportunely ; for the com- 
missary stores were quite exhausted and the 
troops began to feed on Indian corn. There is still 
a barrel of pork remaining, which I ke[)t as a 
stand-by. I shall, as soon as these dispatches 



are gone, transfer to Mr. Rolette what small 
quantity of salt is remaining, say about forty 
pounds, and will imtuediately go about putting 
everything respecting the garrison, etc., in a 
regular way, according to the forms I have re- 

With respect to the payment of the troops, 
Mr. Rolette has offered to furnisii tlie money 
for that, they having been paid up to 
the 24th of August last. The cold weather set- 
ting in, and the absolute necessity they are in 
for some articles of clothing, will make it 
necessary for me to pay them up to the 24th 
inst., which I would not otherwise do till I re- 
ceive your orders to that effect. Whatever dis- 
bursements I have been obliged to make, shall 
be all transferred to Mr. Rolette, in order to 
give less trouble, being under one head. Mr. 
Rolette appears to wish to do everything in his 
power for the good of the service, and says he 
will at all times furnish what money he can for 
that purpose, and as to his contract, I am con- 
vinced he will do everything possible to com- 
plete it. The greatest inconvenience will be on 
account of salt, which cannot be procured here 
to preserve the summer's supply of meat. 

I am ])utting Fort McKay in as strong and 
comfortable a situation, and at as little expense, 
as possible, at the same time omitting nothing 
that may tend to the safety of the place. The 
four barrels of powder sent out by Mr. Rolette 
were received, as also some half-pound round 
shot, and the case of round shot mentioned as 
deficient in my letter of the 1 Ith inst. 

In conformity to your orders, I sent off the 
Green Hay Volunteers, and nitie of my own 
company, under Lieut. Graham, of the Indian 
department. I have given orders to Lieut. 
Graham to proceed with all possible haste till 
he meets Robert Dickson ; that should he meet 
the troops previous to meeting Mr. Dickson, 
to give them every assistance in his power. 
My motive; for doing this is because I under- 
stand they are greatly in need ; and as there 

are no appearances of the enemy's approach at 
present, the men are little wanted here. 

The troops here have been almost continually, 
more or less of them, on fatigue, for which I 
make them the usual allowance of ten pence 
per day. The militia, when on fatigue, will 
have the same allowance; and as circumstances 
made it necessary for me to oblige them to 
furnish themselves with provisions, they will 
have six pence per day for that; and for every 
team furnished they will receive five shillings 
— all of which, as well as every other account, 
shall be correctly stated, and Mr. Rolotte will 
pay them. With respect to the officers here, I 
am highly pleased with them all, and assure 
you they have rendered every service in their 
power. As to Sergt. Keating, of the artillery, 
from the zealous, courageous and handsome 
manner in which he has behaved himself since 
he left Mackinaw, I conceive him worthy of 
every advantage that merit in his profession de- 

Mr. Honore, of the Indian department, has, 
since we left Mackinaw, acted in the capacity of 
commissary, without whose assistance I would 
be badly off in this respect, for which Mr. 
Rolette informs me he has received your api)ro- 
bation of granting him the pay of a lieuten'int, 
which I hope may not be improper to continue, 
as his assistance in that capacity is indispen- 
sably necessary. It may be proper for me to ob- 
serve, that the high price of goods at this place 
would make it impossible for a private soldier 
to keep himself completely equipped, exclusive 
of his yearly clothing, even if he had a subal- 
tern officer's pay. It requires two and a half 
month.s' j)ay of a private to buy himself a pair 
of shoes, and other things in jn'oportion. 

The detachment of Michigan fencibles in 
this garrison have, till now, proved to be good 
soldiers; but they require severe officers. As 
this garrison is small, and not placed in an ad- 
vantageous situation for the defense of the 
place, it will be necessary for the officer com- 
manding here, as soon as possible, to have the 



requsite instructions on this head; and if an al- 
teration is allowed to be made, the materials 
necessary, such as wood and stone, must be got 
out to the spot on the snow. My determination 
and wish to act in every respect in conformity 
to your orders, and as exactly as possible, makes 
it necessary for me to trouble you much more 
on some heads than I perhaps ought to do; but 
as the good of the service requires, as long as I 
hold my present situation, that I should seek 
every information in this way, I take the liberty 
to ask you what authority I have with respect 
to the Indian department, and whether the 
necessary provisions, etc., for the Indians are 
furnished by the garrison, or whether the officers 
of that department make those purchases them- 

The Sauks or Mississippi Indian heroes have 
just arrived, and brought word that a party 
lately arrived from the Riviere Des Forts,* 
brought in ten scalps, and say they will continue 
to bring them in as they do ducks from the 
swamps. The want of provision s[^has been the 
cause of my not making an attempt there. 
Everything must be ready for a start in the 
spring. Should the re-inforcement of troops 
reach here in time, I should deem it best to 
make an attack this fall, as it wonld be an im- 
portant point for the defense of this, to obstruct 
their boats. I am impatient for instructions. 

I am informed that representations have been 
made at Mackinaw with respect to my conduct in 
the execution of my duty here; but as they pro- 
ceed from envy and meanness, I do not reganl 
them. My actions have ever been conducted by 
the purest motives for the good of the service; 
and if I did not give the command of the expe- 
dition to the Rock river to Capt Grignon, it 
was because his conduct in the pursuit of the 
American gun-boat, at the taking of this place, 
on the 19th of July last, would not authorize me 
to entrust a command of so much consequence 
to his charge. 

* So it appears in the manuscript; perhaps Des Moines 
river is the stream referred to . 

MiCHILLIMACKINAW, 28th Oct.,'l814. 

To Capt. Anderson: , 

Sie: — I was highly gratified on receiving your 
dispatch, announcing the defeat of another 
attempt of the enemy to ascend the Mississippi 
for an attack on your post. I also fully approve 
of the judicious measures you adopted to coun- 
teract their intentions, particularly in affording 
that prompt assistance to the Sauks which 
inspired them with such courage and confi- 
dence, and in the end was productive of such 
brilliant] results. Capt. Bulger, of the Royal 
Newfoundland regiment, being appointed by 
me to command at Fort McKay, and on the 
Mississippi, in resigning it to him, I should not 
do justice to the opinion I entertain of your 
merit, did I not testify my entire satisfaction 
with your conduct while you held it. I, there- 
fore doubt not that you will exhibit the same 
zeal for the good of the service, and afford 
Capt. Bulger the utmost assistance and support 
which may be in your power, and, in the event 
of being again attacked by the enemy, that your 
company of volunteers will distinguish them- 
selves by their gallantry and good conduct, of 
which, you may assure them, I have a high idea. 

I have directed Capt. Bulger to give every 
facility to you, duly receiving your pay, and the 
other allowances to which you and your officers 
are entitled. I have the honor, etc., 

(Signed) Rob't McDouall, 

Lieut. Col. Commanding. 
Praieie du Chien, Jan. 3, 1«]5. 

Robert Dickson, " agent of the western In- 
dians, and superintendent of the conquered 
countries," writes under the above date, to Capt. 
A. H. Bulger, commanding Fort McKay : 

Sir : — The sergeant on guard having informed 
me that the Indian chief who was then a pris- 
oner in Fort McKay, was sick, I thought proper 
to send the Sioux interpreter, Joseph Renville, 
to visit him, who returned with the following 
talk delivered by the Indian : 

"I am very sick. My Father apparently finds 
it necessary that I should die here. If I am 



longer kept a close prisoner, I will most surely 
die of disease. It troubles my spirit to think 
that I shall die of sickness. I request of my 
Father that I may suffer death from the hands 
of his soldiers. Dying by the hands of his 
soldiers, will be the means of saving my Nation 
from destruction ; and the Sioux chief, the 
Little C'orbeau, will know the manner of my 
death. The man who committed the murder 
of my band ; but I understand that it is not 
altogether for him that I am bound, but for the 
very bad conduct of my people before this hap- 
pened — therefore, I demand to die by the 
hands of your soldiers." 

On being interrogated by the interpreter re- 
specting the man who was first confined, and 
who had promised to return, he answered : 
"That he was not a man of his band; and 
knowing the evil disposition of his people, he 
was sure that they had killed him." He then 
added : "I am an old man. It was with diffi- 
culty that I got here. You know that I fell 
down often on the road, and principally when I 
descended the mountain ; but my courage .and 
force were renewed when I reflected that I was 
going to save the lives of my children by dying 
for them. Do not let my Father think, that by 
mean excuses and evasions, that I wish to save 
my life. No ! I am above such baseness. I 
not afraid of death. My Father has already 
done me honor in sending his first soldiers to 
bring me here. I did not think my old body 
was worth so much trouble." 

I think it necessary to make you the above 
communication, and in an hour hence 1 shall 
wait on you in order to give you some infor- 
mation I have just received. 


Le Corbeau Francois, on arriving at the gate 
of Fort McKay, with the prisoner who had 
killed the two men, said : "My Father! Here 
is the dog that bit you. In delivering him up, 
I trust that it will be the means of saving my 
hand froMi destruction." On coming into the 
commandant's room he again repeated : "This is 

the dog that bit you. Do with him as you 
please ; he deserves to die. I have one favor to 
request of you — that you will not kill hiiu until 
I gooff; he most surely merits death. In de- 
livering up this bad man, I also give up the 
marks [gifts insignia of friendship] of the 
Americans. Although we are not numerous, I 
think we can act as well as the other Indians, 
and henceforth I am resolved to follow your 
counsel. Some time ago you frightened me, 
and I then thought it was a bad business ; but 
I am now convinced that it was the best thing 
that could have happened, as it is the means of 
preserving the lives of our women and children. 
You are now busy; I will relate to you at another 
time what the Americans told me, the last time 
I went to see them." 

Le Corbeau Francois' talk January 7th, even- 
ing: "The reports that the Indian, lately ar- 
rived from the Americans, brought, were these: 
They told me, said he, that when they got angry 
that they would bring all the Nations from the 
Missouri, and sweep away everything in this 
quarter before them. Notwithstanding this, I 
have given up their marks and colors. I know 
what I do, and I shall in future act against them." 
He then repeated to the interpreter the substance 
of the letter of Robert Dickson, the superin- 
tendent, to Capt. Bulger. 

On the trial, being interrogated by the court, 
and pointing to the prisoner, asked if he was 
the man who killed one man and wounded the 
other? He answered — "He is truly the man." 
The chief then addressed the prisoner: "Why 
did you deny the bad act you have done? You 
ought to speak the truth. The Master of Life 
will take pity on you. There can be no pardon 
for you — prepare for death. You ought not to 
regret dying after committing the crime you 
have." To this the prisoner made no answer. 

When taken from the court to the guard- 
house, the prisoner requested to see two Indians, 
his relations, which was granted. On their 
coming into iho guard-house, the prisoner thus 
reproached tiiem: "You have betrayed me in 



bringing me here. I thought at least one of you 
woukl have consented to die with me; and far 
from that being the case, you have not even 
come to see me." They thus replied to tlie 
prisoner: "Do you think we have come so far 
in the cold for the love we bear you? You 
killed the people who came to save our lives, 
without any quarrel. If it depended on us to 
save your life, you would not live a single 

FoET McKay, l-5th January, 1815. 
Sir: — We beg of you to excuse us for the 
fault we committed towards your person, and 
the dignity of your commission; after wiiich 
we dare flatter ourselves that you would conde- 
scend to receive this new address. 

F. B., 
J. R. 
In the name of the inhabitants of the Dogs' 

To Capt. A. H.Bulger, Com'dg Fort McKay. 
Fort McKay, 15th January, 1815. 
Sir: — We, the citizens of the Dog Plains, 
not knowing in what manner to explain the 
sentiments with which we are penetrated, we 
pray that you will receive our thanks and ac- 
knowledgments for the protection thatyou as- 
sure to His Britannic Majesty's subjects. Your 
conduct and activity in rendering justice in an 
Indian country, which has been exposed to so 
many misfortunes hitherto, gives us hopes to live 
in quiet under your command; and permit us at 
the same time, more and more to testify our 
zeal and loyalty towards our sovereign. We 
beg of you to believe us, with profound respect, 

Your very humble servants, 

[Names not preserved.] 
To Capt. A. H. Bulger, Comd'g Fort McKay. 

MiCHILLIMACKINAC, 24th Feb., 1815. 

To Capt. Anderson — 

Sir: — I, this day, had the honor of your let- 
ter of the l7th ult., stating your having resigned 
the command of Fort McKay to Capt. Bulger. 
That gentleman speaks of you in such a manner 

that I have only to reiterate to you my thanks 
for the zeal and ability you displayed in your 
command at a very critical period ;and I have to 
beg of you to give to Cajjt. Bulger the most 
friendly and cordial support, and, by every assis- 
tance in yourpower,endeavor to aid in procuring 
those supplies which will still enable us to retain 
that most important country, upon which our 
Indian connection, and even the safety of this 
island so much depend. 

I am fully aware of the sacrifices you have 
made for the public service, and shall be ever 
ready, as far as it is in my power, to prove to 
you how desirous I am of your being recom- 
pensed, as you merit. I had before taken this 
into consideration, and in my last dispatch 
recommended you to His Excellency to be a 
captain in the Indian department from the 4th 
of September. This appointment,! have reason 
to believe, will afford you those permanent ad- 
vantages, which, as captain of the Michigan 
fencibles, you would probably enjoy but a short 
time. I well know your zeal for the service, 
and will always be ready to serve you as far as 
in ray power, and in the way most pleasing for 

Every human effort must be made by one and 
all of you, to preserve your important post, 
upon which so much depends. Do your utmost 
to conciliate and animate the Indians, for with 
their hearty co-operation, I trust that the enemy 
is again destined to defeat and disgrace. As it 
is ray wish that the utmost harmony should 
prevail at your garrison during this important 
crisis, I strongly recommend to you to forget 
what has passed, with regard to Mr. Rolette, and 
to be in future, on that friendly footing with 
him, which may, perhaps assist him in furnish- 
ing the supplies, which are of so much conse- 
quence in enabling Capt. Bulger to retain his 
important post. I have the honor, etc., 

(Signed): Robert McDouall, 

Lieut. Col. Com'd'g, and Commanding the In- 
dian Department thereof, and its dependen- 



Answer of La Feuille, or The Leaf, principal 
Sioux chief, to Thomas,* delivered to Cai>t. 
Anderson. [No date, in 1814 or 181 5. J 

INIy Brother! — T iiave heard your words and 
received your talk, and will use my endeavors 
to follow your advice. You are near our Great 
Father at ^Micliilliniaekmac, who gives us good 
counsels, and puts us in the road of our anc<!s- 
tors. Who would be foolish enough not to 
follow his advice? 

My Beother Thomas!— I regard you as a 
brot'aer. Take this pipe, (holding a pipe in his 
hand), and with it, talk to the Chippewas near 
me (the liereditary enemies of the Sioux); they 
are wild and stubborn. I wish to be as brethren 
with them. Tell them a parcel of foolish Renards 
(Foxes) went to war against them, though I 
used my endeavors to prevent them. It is my 
wish to be at peace with all Nations. I regard 
you as a brother, and hold you fast by the hand. 

Speech of L'Epervier, or Sparrow Hawk, bet- 
ter known as Black Hawk, principal war chief 
of the Sauks, delivered before peace was known, 
at Prairie du Chien, April 18, 1815, and taken 
down by Capt. T. G. Anderson: 

" Mv Father! — I am pleased- to hear you 
speak as you have done. I have been sent by 
our chiefs to ask for a large gun (cannon), to 
place in our village. The Big Knives are so 
treacherous, we are afraid that they may come 
up to deceive us. By having one of your large 
guns in our village, we will live in safety; our 
women will then be able to plaiitcorn,and hoe the 
ground unmolested, and our young men will be 
able to hunt for their families without dread of 
the Big Knives." 

Taking the war-belt in his hand, and advanc- 
ing a little, he continued: 

"My Father!— You see this belt. When 
my Great Father at Quebec gave it to me to be 
on terms of friend.ship with all his Red Children, 
to form but one body, to preserve our lands, 

•.\.i La Feuillo refers to Thomas whom he addresses ag re- 
sidiiiK "near" tn Mnc-tinaw, it must have reference to the 
Menomonce Chief Thoinus or Tomah, who lived near Green 
bay. rather than the Sank Chief Thomas, whoso home was 
doubtless with his people near the mouth of Rock river. 

and to make war against the Big Knives, who 
want to destroy us all, my Great Father said: 
'Take courage, my children, hold tight your 
war club, and destroy the Big Knives as much 
as you can. If the Master of Life favors us, 
you shall again find your lands as they formerly 
were. Your lands shall again become green — 
the trees green — the water green, and the sky 
blue. When your lands change color, you shall 
also change.' This, my Father, is the reason 
why we Sauks hold the war club tight in our 
hands, and will not let it go. 

" My Father!— I now see the time is draw- 
ing near when we shall all change color; but, 
my Father, our lands have not yet changed 
color— they are red — the water is red with our 
blood, and the sky is cloudy. I have fought the 
Big Knives, and will continue to tight them 
until they retire from our lands. Till then, my 
Father, your Red Children, cannot be happy." 

Then laying his tomahawk down before him, 
he continued: 

" My Father!— I show you this war club to 
convince you that we Sauks have not forgotten 
the words of our Great Father at Quebec. You 
see, my Father, that the club which you gave 
me is still red and that we continue to hold it 
fast. For what did you put it in my hands? 

"My Father!— When I lately came from 
war, and killed six of the enemy, I promised my 
warriors that I would get something for them 
from my Father, the Red Head ; but as he is 
not here, and you fill his place, I beg of you, 
my Father, to let me have .something to take 
back to them. 

" My Father! — I hope you will agree to what 
I ask, and not allow me to return to my warriors 
empty-handed,ashamod,and with a heavy heart." 

Speech of the Kickapoo chief, the Barbou- 
i Her, addressed to Capt. Anderson, at Prairie 
du Chien, Aug. 3, isio. 

"My Father! — You suppose within yourself: 
What has this old fellow got to say? I have 
not much to say. My chief and warriors sent 
me to listen to your words, as the voice of our 



Great Father at Mchillimackinac. I hear the 
news from below (meaning St. Louis), and 
from you. From below I hear, but do not re- 
tain it; from you I hear with satisfaction, and 
my ears and heart are open, and retain what 
you say. The Sauks and my Nation make one; 

and whatever they say, I hearken to it. The 
Great Spirit hears us talk to-day under a clear 
sky, and we must tell truth. I squeeze my 
Father's hand, am obedient to his word, and 
will not forget the charity he now bestows 
upon us." 





During the winter of 1825-6, there were con- 
fined in the guard house of Fort Crawford, at 
Prairie du Chien, because of some alleged dis- 
honest act, two Winnebago Indians. In Octo- 
ber, 1826, the fort was abandoned and the gar- 
rison removed to Fort Snelling. The com- 
mandant took with him the two Winnebagoes. 
During the spring of 1827, the reports, about 
the two Indiana, around Prairie du Cliien, was 
to the effect that tliey had been killed. It was 
soon apparent that a spirit of enmity between 
the tribe and the settlers in southwestern Wis- 
consin was effectually stirred up. In addition 
to this, were the daily encroachments of miners 
in the lead region; for these miners had, by 
tliis time, overrun the mining country from 
Galena to the Wisconsin river. Finally the 
difficulties led to an open rupture. 


On the 28th of June, 1827, two Winnebago 
Indians, Red Bird and Wo-Kaw and three of 
their companions, entered the house of Rigeste 
Gagnier, about two miles from Prairie du 
Ciiien, where they remained several hours. At 
last, when Mr. Gagnier least expected it. Red 
Bird leveled his gun and shot him dead on his 
hearthstone. A person in the building by the 
name of Lipcap, who was a hired man, was 
slain at the same time by We-Kaw. Madame 
Gagnier turned to fly with her infant of eigh- 
teen months. As she was about to leap through 
the window, the child was torn from her arms 
by We-Kaw, stabbed, scalped and thrown vio- 
lently on the floor as dead. The murderer then 
attacked the woman, but gave way when she 

snatched up a gun that was leaning against the 
wall, and presented it to his breast. She then 
effected her escape. Her eldest son, a lad of 
ten years, also shunned the murderers, and they 
both arrived in the village at the same time. 
The alarm was soon given ; but, when the 
avengers of blood arrived at Gagnier's house, 
they found in it nothing living but his mangled 
infant. It was carried to the village, and, in- 
credible as it may seem, it recovered. 


Red Bird and his companions immediately 
proceeded from the scene of their crime to the 
rendezvous of their band. During their ab- 
sence, thirty-seven of the warriors who ac- 
knowledged the authority of Red Bird, had as- 
sembled with their wives and children, near the 
mouth of the Bad Ax river, in what is now 
Vernon county. They received the murderers 
with joy and loud approbations of their exploit. 
A keg of liquor which they had secured was set 
abroach, and the Indians began to drink and as 
their spirits rose, to boast of what they had al- 
ready done and intended to do. They continued 
their revel for two days, b'lt on the third the 
source of their excitement gave out — their 
liquor was gone. They were, at about 4 o'clock 
in the afternoon, dissipatint; the last fumes of 
their excitement in the scalp-dance, when they 
descried one of the keel-boats, which had a few 
days before passed up the river with provisions 
for the troops at Fort Snelling, on her return, 
in charge of Mr. Lindsay. Forthwith a pro- 
posal to take her and massacre the crew was 
made and carried by acclamation. They count- 



ed on doing this without risk, for they had ex- 
amined her on her way up and supposed there 
were no arms on board. But in this they were 
mistaken as the sequal shows. 


There were indications of hostilities on the 
part of the Sioux on the upper Mississippi, and 
the boats wlien tliey left Fort Snelling had been 
supplied with arms. In descending tiie river 
they expected an attack at Wabashaw, where 
the Sioux were dancing the war dance, and 
hailed their approach with insults and menaces, 
but did not offer to attack the boats, or obstruct 
their passage. The whites now supposed the 
danger over, and, a strong wind at that moment 
beginning to blow up stream, the boats jjarted 
company So strong was the wind that all the 
force of the sweeps could scarcely stem it; and 
by the time the foremost boat was near the en- 
campment, at the mouth of the Bad Ax, the 
crew were very willing to stop and rest. One 
or two Frenchmen, or half-breeds, who were on 
board observed hostile appearances on shore, 
and advised the rest to keep the middle of the 
stream witii the boat, but their counsel was dis- 
regarded. They urged the boat directly toward 
the camp with all the force of the sweeps. 
There were sixteen men on deck. 

The men were rallying their French com- 
panions on their apprehensions, as the boat 
approached the shore; but when within thirty 
yards of the bank, suddenly the trees and rocks 
rang with the blood-chilling, ear-piercing tones 
of the war whoop, and a volley of rifle balls 
rained upon the deck. Happily, the Winneba- 
goes had Tiot yet recovered from the effects of 
their debauch, and their arms were not steady. 
One man only fell. He was a little negro 
named Peter. His leg was dreadfully shattered 
and he afterward died of the wound. A second 
volley soon came from the shore; but, as the 
men we e lying at the bottom of the boat, they 
all escaped but one, who was shot through the 
heart. Encouraged by the non-resistance, the 
Winnebagoes rushed to their canoes with in- 

tent to board. The boatmen having recovered 
from their first panic, seized their guns and the 
savages were received with a severe discharge. 
In one canoe two savages were killed with the 
same bullet and several wounded. The attack 
was continued until night, when one of the par- 
ty named Mandeville, who had assumed com- 
mand, sprang into the water, followed by 
four others, who succeeded in setting the boat 
afloat, and then went down the stream. 

Thirty-seven Indians were engaged in this 
attack, which may be called the first "Battle of 
Bad Ax;" the second being fought just below 
this point, five years after, between the Ameri- 
cans and Indians of another tribe, of which an 
account will be given in another chapter. Of 
the Winnebagoes seven were killed and four- 
teen wounded. They managed to put 693 shots 
into and through the boat. Two of the crew 
were killed outright, and four wounded — two 
mortally. The presence of mind of Mande- 
ville undoubtedly saved the rest, as well as the 
boat. Mr. Lindsay's boat, the rear one, did not 
reach the mouth of the Bad Ax until midnight. 
The Indians opened fire upon her, which was 
promptly returned. Owiiig to the darkness no 
injury was done to the boat, and she passed 
safely on. Consideri ng the few that were en- 
gaged in the attack on the first boat and in its 
defense, the contest was indeed a spirited and 
sanguinary one. 


Great was the alarm at Prairie du Chien 
when the boats arrived there. The people left 
their houses and farms and crowded into the 
dilapidated fort. An express was immediately 
sent to Galena, and another to Fort Snelling, 
for assistance. A company of upwards of a 
hundred volunteers soon arrived from Galena, 
and the minds of the inhabitants were quieted. 
In a few days four imperfect companies arrived 
from Fort Snelling. The consternation of the 
people of the lead mines was great, and in all 
the frontier settlements. This portion of the 
country then contained, as is supposed, about 



5,000 inhabitants — tliat is south of the Wiscon- 
sin river and at Prairie dii Ciiien, and extending 
into Illinois. A great many of tlieso tied from 
their homes. 


On the 1st of September, 1827, Maj. William 
Whisller, with government troops arrived at 
the portage (now Portage, Columbia Co., Wis.), 
and while there an express arrived from Gen. 
H. Atkinson, announcing his approach, and di- 
recting him to halt and fortify himself and wait 
his arrival. Tlie object of the joint expedition 
of Gen. Atkinson from Jefferson barracks below 
St. Louis, and of Maj. Whistler from Fort How- 
ard, at Green Bay, was to capture those who 
had committed the murders at Prairie du Chien, 
and ])ut a stop to any further aggression. And 
this march of tlie t^vo into the Winnebago coun- 
try from o])positt' clirections was well cilculated 
to overawe the disaffected amongthe Winneba- 
goes. These Indians were soon advised that 
tlie seiuirity of llieir people lay in the surrender 
of the murderers of the Gagnier family. Ac- 
cordingly, Red Bird and We-Kaw were surren- 
dered up to !\Iaj. Whistler, at the portage and 
the Winnebago war was ended. The two In- 
dians were taken to Prairie du Chien for safe- 
keeping, to await their in the regular courts 
of justice for murder. 


The next spring (1 828), Rod Bird, We-Kaw 
and another Winnelaago prisoner were tried at 
Prairie du Chien, before Judge James Duane 
Dnty, who went from Green Bay there for that 
purpose. They were found guilty and sen- 
tenced to death. lied Bird died in prison. A 
deputation of the tribe went to Washington to 
solicit from the President of the United States, 
John Quincy Adams, a pardon for the others. 
I'resident Adams granted it on the implied con- 
dition that the tribe would cede the lands then 
the possession of the miners, in the lead re- 
gion, to the General Government. The Winne- 
bagoes agreed to this. Madame Gagnier was 
compensated for the loss of her husband and ; 

the mutilation of her infant. At the treaty 
with the Winnebagoes held at Prairie du Chien 
in 1829, provision was made for two sections of 
land to lier and her two children. The United 
States agreed to pay her the sum of #50 per an- 
num for fifteen years to be deducted from the 
annuity of the Winnebagoes. 

de-kau-ray's imprisonment. 
In closing this account of the "Winnebago 
War" we give an anecdote, which places the 
Winnebago character in an amiable light. The 
militia of Prairie du Chien, immediately after 
the affair of the boats at the mouth of the Bad 
Ax river, seized an old Winnebago chief named 
De-kau-ray and four other Indians. The chief 
was informed that if Red Bird was not given 
up within a certain time he and the others were 
to die in his place. This De-kau-ray steadfastly 
believed. A messenger, a young Indian, was 
sent to inform the tribe of the state of affairs, and 
several days had elapsed and no information 
was received of the murderers. The dreadful 
day was near at hand, and De-kau-ray, being in 
bad health, asked permission of the officer to go 
to the river and indulge in his long-accustomed 
habit of bathing in order to improve his physi- 
cal condition, upon which Col. Snelliug told 
him that if he would promise on the honor of a 
chief that he woidd not leave town, he might 
have his liherty and enjoy all his privileges un- 
til the day appointed for his execution. Ac- 
cordingly, he first gave his hand to the colonel, 
thanking him for his friendly offer, then raised 
both hands aloft, and, in the most solemn adjii- 
r.ation, promised that he would not leave the 
bounds prescribed, and said if he had a hundred 
lives he would sooner lose tliem all than for- 
feit his word. He was then set at liberty. He 
was advised to flee to the wilderness and make 
his escape. "Do you think," said he, "I prize 
life above honor?" He then complacently re- 
mained until nine days of the ten which he had 
to live had passed, and still nothing was heard 
of the murderers or of their being apprehended. 
No alteration could be seen in the countenance 




of the chief. It so happened that on that day 
Gen. Atkinson arrived with his troops from 
Jefferson barracks, and the order for the execu- 
tion was countermanded and the Indians per- 
mitted to return to their homes. 


No tribe considers revenge a more sacred 
duty llian the Winnebagoes. It was their an- 
cient custom to take five lives for one, and it is 
notorious on the frontiers, that no blood of 
theirs has been shed, even in modern days, that 
has not been fully avenged. They used, too, to 
wear some part of the body of a slain enemy 
about them as a testimonial of prowess. We 
well remember a grim Winnebago, who was 
wont to present himself before the whites, who 
passed the portage of the Fo.x and Wisconsin 
rivers, with a human hand hanging on his breast. 
He had taken it from a Yankee soldier at Tip- 

It was not ditficult to stir up such a people to 
hostility, and, moreover, circumstances favored 
the design of the Dakotas. There is, or was, a 
village of Winnebagoes on the Black river, not 
far from the Dakota town of which Warba-shaw 
is chief. The two tribes are descended from 
the same stock, as their languages abundantly 
prove, and the claims of common origin have 
been strengthened by frequent intermarriages. 
Now, it happened, that at the time when Too- 
pun-kah Zeze was put to death at Fort Snelling, 
the Red Bird was absent from his Winnebago 
village, on an expedition against the Ohippe- 
was. He returned unsuccessful, and, conse- 
quently, sullen and malcontent. Till this time, 
he had been noted among his tribe for his 
friendly disposition towards the "men with 
hats, " as the Indians call the whites, and 
among the traders, for his scrupulous honesty. 
However, this man, from whom no white per- 
son beyond the frontier would have anticipated 
injury, was easily induced to commit a bloody 
and unprovoked outrage. 

Certain Dakota ambassadors arrived at the 
Red Bird's village, with a lie in their mouths. 

" You have become a by-word of reproach 
among us," said they; "you have just given the 
Chippewas reason to laugh at you, and the Big 
Knives also laugh at you. Lo! while they were 
among you they dared not offend you, but now 
they have caused Wa-man-goos-ga-ra-ha, and his 
companion to be put to death, and they have 
cut their bodies into pieces not bigger than the 
spots in a bead garter." The tale was believed, 
and a cry for vengeance arose throughout the 
village. It was decided that something must 
be done, and the Dakota envoys promised to 
lend a helping hand. 

A few days before, two keel-boats had .as- 
cended the river, laden with provisions for the 
troops at Fort Snelling. They passed the mouth 
of Black river with a full sheet, so that a few 
Winnebagoes, who were there encamped, had 
some difficulty in reaching them with their 
canoes. They might have t.aken both boats, for 
there were but three fire-locks on board; never- 
theless they offered no injury. H^hey sold fish 
and venison to the boatmen, on amicable terms, 
and suffered them to pursue their journey un- 
molested. We mention this trifling circum- 
stance, merely because it was afterwards re- 
ported in the St Louis papers, that the crews of 
these boats had abused these Winnebagoes 
shamefully, which assuredly was not the case.* 
The wind died away before the boats reached 
the village of Wa-ba-shaw, f which is situated 
on the west bank of the Mississipjii, twelve or 
fifteen miles above the mouth of the Black 
river. Here the Dakotas peremptorily com- 
manded them to put ashore, which they did. 
No reason was assigned for the order. Upwards 

* To page 162, vol. il, of our Collections, we appended a 
note from Gov. Keynold's Life and Times, which probably 
embodied the newspaper accounts of the pretended "shame- 
ful abuse of the Winnebagoes"— that the crews of these boats, 
on their upward trip, bad stopped at a Winnebago camp, 
got them all drunlt. and then forced six or seven stupefied 
squaws on t)oard tnv corrupt and brutal purposes, and Itept 
them during the voyige to Fort Snelling, and on their re- 
turn. Hence the Httrtck on the boats by the Winnebagoes 
when thoy became sober and conscious of the iniquity done 
them. Rut this emphatic denial by Mr. Snelling, of this 
infamous charge, and the fact that Judge LocUwood, in his 
narrative, and' Gen. Smith and Mr, Neill in their histories, 
are silent on the subject, should brand it as utterly without 

+ The site of the present town of Winona. 



of 500 warriors immediately crowded on board. 
A passenger, who was well acquainted with the 
Dakotas, observed that they brought no women 
with them as usual; that they were painted 
black, which signifies either grief or hostility; 
that they refused to shake hands with the boat- 
men, and that their speech was brief and sul- 
len. He instantly communicated his observa- 
tion to Mr. Lindsay, who commanded the boats, 
and advised him to push on, before the savages 
should have discovered that the party were 
wholly unarmed. Lindsay, a bold-hearted Keii- 
tuckinn, assumed the tone of command, and 
peremptorily ordered the Dakotas ashore. They, 
probably, thouj^iil that big words would be 
seconded with hard blows, and complied. The 
boats pushed on, several Indians pursued them 
along the shore fur several miles, with speech 
of taunt and <leHance, but they offered no fur- 
ther molestation. 

'Ihe D.ikota villages"' higher up showed much 
ill-will, but no disposition, or rather no courage, 
to attack. Altogetlier apjtearances were so 
threatening, that on his arrival at Fort Snellinij, 
Mr. Linilsay communicated wiiathe had seen to 
the ciiminandingi>fflcer, and .-isked that his crew 
should be furnished with arms and ammunition. 
1 he reipiest was granted; his thirty-two men 
were provided with thirty-two muskets, and a 
barrel of ball-cartridges. Thus secured against 
attack, the boats commenced the descent of the 

Li the meanwhile, the Red Bird had cogi- 
tated upon what he hail heard, every tittle of 
which he believed, and had come to the conclu- 
sion that the honor of his race required the 
liliKid of two Americans at least. He, there- 
fore, got into his canoe with Wekaw, or the 
Sun, and two otiiers, and paddled to Prairie du 
Ciiien. When he got there he waited upon Mr. 
Hoilvin, in the most friendly manner, and 
begged to be regarded as one of the staunchest 
friends of the Americans. Tlie venerable agent 
admitted his claims, but absolutely refused to 

•Red Wing and Kaposia, saysNeill. 

give him any whisky. The Winnebago chief 
then applied to a trader in the town, who, relying 
on iiisgeneral good character, did nothesitate to 
furnish him with an eight gallon keg of spirits, 
the value of which was to be paid in furs in tlie 
succeeding autumn. 

There was an old colored woman in the vil 
lage, whose five sons had never heard that they 
were inferior beings, either from the Lidians or 
the Canadian French. Therefore, having never 
considered themselves degraded, they were not 
degraded; on the contrary, they ranked with 
the most respectable inhabitants of the i)Iace. 
We knew them well. One of them was the vil- 
lage blacksmith; the others were substantial 
farmers. Their father was a Frenchman, and 
their name was Gagnier. 

One of these men owned a farm three miles 
from Prairie du Chien, where he lived with his 
wife, who was a white woman, two children and 
a hired man named Lipcap. Thither the Red 
Bird repaired with his three companions, sure 
of a fair reception, for Registre Gagnier had 
always been noted for his humanity to the poor, 
especially the Indians. 

Registre Gagnier invited his savage visitors 
to enter, hung the kettle over the fire, gave them 
to eat and smoked the pipe of peace with them. 
The Red Bird was the last man on earth whom he 
would have feared; for they were well acquainted 
with each other and had reciprocated good oflices. 
The Indians remained several hours under 
Gagnier's hospitable roof. At last, when the 
farmer least expected it, the Winnebago chief 
leveled his gun and shot him down dead on his 
hearth-stone. Lipcap was slain at the same 
instant by Wekaw. Madame Gagnier turned to 
flv with her infant of eighteen months. As she 
was about to leap through the window, the 
child was torn from her arms by Wekaw, stabbed, 
scalped and thrown violently on the fioor 
as dead. The murderer then attacked the 
woman; but gave way wlien she snatched up a 
gun that was leaning against the wall and pre- 
sented it to his breast. She then effected her 



escape. Her eldest son, a lad of ten years, also 
shunned the murderers, and they both arrived 
in the village at about the same time. The 
alarm was soon given; but when the avengers 
of blood arrived at poor Registre Gagnier's 
house, they found in it nothing living but his 
mangled infant. It was carried to the village, 
and, strange as it may seerp, recovered.* 

The Red Bird and his companions immedi- 
ately proceeded from the scene of their crime to 
the rendezvous of their band. During their ab- 
sence, thirty-seven of the warriors, who acknowl- 
edged the authority of Red Bird, had assem- 
bled, with their wives and children, near the 
mouth of Bad Ax river. They received the 
murderers with exceeding great joy, and loud 
approbation of their exploit. The keg of liquor 
was immediately set abroach, the red men began 
to drink, and, as their spirits rose, to boast of 
what they had already done, and intended to do. 
Two days did they continue to revel; and on 
the third, the source of their excitement gave 
out. They were, at about 4 in the afternoon, 
dissipating the last fumes of their excitement in 
the scalp dance, when they descried one of the 
keel-boats before mentioned, approaching. 
Forthwith a proposal to take her, and massacre 
the crew, was made and carried by acclamation. 
They counted upon doing this without risk; for 
they had examined her on the way up, and sup- 
posed that there were no arms on bo.ard. 

Mr. Lindsay's boats had descended the river 
together as far as the village of Wa-ba-sliaw, 
where they expected an attack. The Dakolas 
on shore were dancing the war-dance, and hailed 
their approach with insults and menaces; but 
did not, nevertheless, offer to obstruct their 
passage. The whites now supposed the danger 
over, and a strong wind at that moment begin- 
ning to blow up stream, the boats parted com- 
pany. That which sat deepest in the water had 

* Gen Smith, on the authority of Jud^e Doty, states that 
this tragedy occurred on the 28th of June, 1S37; Judge Locli- 
wood sa^•s the 26th and Niles Register says the 24th. Neill 
follows Locliwood's chronology. 

the advantage of the under current, and, of 
course, gained several miles in advance of the 

So strong was the wind, that all the force of 
sweeps could scarcely stem it, and, by the time 
the foremost boat was near the encampment, at 
mouth of the Bad Ax, the crew were very will- 
ing to stop and rest. One or two Frenchmen, 
or half breeds, who were on board, observed 
hostile appearances on shore, and advised the 
rest to keep the middle of the stream; but their 
counsel was disregarded. Most of the crew were 
Americans, who, as usual with our countrymen, 
combined a profound ignorance of Indian char- 
acter with a thorough contempt for Indian 
prowess. They urged the boat directly toward 
the camp, with all the force of the sweeps. 
There were sixteen men on deck. It may be 
well to observe here, that this, like all keel-boats 
used in the Mississippi valley, was built almost 
exactly on the model of the Erie and Middlesex 
canal boats. 

The men were rallying their French compan- 
ions on their apprehensions, and the boat* was 
within thirty yards of the shore, when suddenly 
the trees and rocks rang with the blood-chilling, 
ear-piercing tones of the warwhoop, and a volley 
of rifle balls rained upon the deck. Happily, 
the Winnebagoes had not yet recovered from 
the effects of their debauch, and their arms were 
not steady. One man only fell by their fire. 
He was a little negro named Peter. His leg 
was dreadfully shattered, and he afterwards 
died of the wound. Then Peter began to curse 

and swear, d g his fellows for leaving him 

to be shot at like a Christmas turkey; but finding 
that his reproaches had no effect, he also man- 
aged to drag himself below. All this passed 
in as little time as it will take to read this par- 

Presently a voice hailed the boat in the Sac 
tongue demanding to know if the crew were 
Englisli? A half-Ureed Sac, named Beancliamp, 

* This advance boat was the Oliver H. Perry, according to 
Geo. Smith's History of Wisconsin. 



answered in the affirmative. "Then," said the 
querist, "come on shore, and we will do you no 
harm, for we are your brethren, the Sacs." 
"Dog," retorted Beauchamp, "no Sac would 
attack us thus cowardly. If you want us on 
shore, you must come and fetch us." 

With that, a second volley came from the 
shore; but as the men were now lying prone in 
the bottom of the boat, below the water line, 
they all escaped but one. One man, an American 
named Stewart, fell. He had risen to return 
the first fire, and the muzzle of his musket pro- 
truding through a loop-hole, showed some Win- 
nebago where to aim. The bullet struck liim 
under the left arm, and passed directly through 
his heart. He feil dead, with his finger on the 
trigger of his undischarged gun. It was a hot 
day, and before the fight was over, the scent of 
the gunpowder could not overpower the stench 
of the red puddle around him. 

The Winnebagoes encouraged by the non- 
residence, now rushed to their canoes, with in- 
tent to l)()ard. One venerable old man endeavored 
to dissuade them. He laid hold on one of the 
canoes, and would, perhaps, have succeeded in 
retaining it; but in the heat of his argument, a 
bail from the boat hit him in the middle finger 
of the peace-making hand. Very naturally en- 
raged at such unkind treatment from his friends, 
he loosed tiie canoe, hurried to his wigwam for 
his gun, and took an active part in the remain- 
der of the action. In the meanwhile, the white 
men had recovered from their first panic, and 
seized their arms. The boarders were received 
with a very severe discharge. In one canoe, 
two savages were killed with the same bullet. 
Their dying struggles upset the canoe, and the 
rest were obliged to swim on shore, where it 
was sometime before they could restore their 
arms to fighting order. Several more were 
wounded, and those who remained unhurt, put 
back, satisfied that a storm was not the best 
mode of attack. 

Two, however, persevered. They were together 
in one canoe, and approached the boat astern. 

where there were no holes through which the 
whites could fire upon them. They soon leaped 
on board. One seized the long steering oar, or 
rudder. The other jumped upon deck, where 
he halted, and discharged five muskets, which 
had been left there by the crew, fled below 
through the deck into the bottom of the boat. 
In this manner he wounded one man very se- 
verely. After this exploit, he hurried to the 
bow, where he seized a long pole, and with the 
assistance of the steersman, succeeded in 
grounding the boat on a sand-bar, and fixing 
her fast under the fire of his people. The two 
Winnebago boatmen then began to load and 
fire, to the no small annoyance of the crew. 
He at the stern was soon dispatched. One of 
the whites observed his position through a 
crack, and gave him a mortal wound through 
the boards. Still, he struggled to get overboard, 
])robably to save his scalp. But his struggles 
were feeble, and a second bullet terminated 
them before he could effect his object. After 
the fight was over, the man who slew him took 
his scalp. 

The bow of the boat was open, and the war- 
rior there still kept his station, out of sight, 
excepting when he stooped to fire, which he 
did five times. His third shot broke the arm, 
and passed through the lungs, of the brave 
Beauchamp. At this sight, one or two began 
to speak of surrender. "No, friends," cried the 
dying man ; "you will not save your lives so. 
Fight to the last ; for they will show no mercy. 
If they get the better of you, for God's sake 
throw me overboard. Do not let them get ray 
hair." He continued to exhort them to resist- 
ance long as his breath lasted, and died with 
the words "fight on," on his lips. Before this 
time, however, his slayer had also taken his 
leave of life. A sailor, named Jack Mande- 
ville, shot him through the head, and he fell 
overboard, carrying his gun with him. 

Frem that moment Mandeville assumed the 
command of the boat. A few had resolved to 
take the skifif, and leave the rest to their fate. 



They had already cast off the rope. Jack in- 
terposed, declaring that he would shoot the 
first man, and bayonet the second, who would 
persevere. They submitted. Two more had 
hidden themselves in the bow of the boat, out 
of sight, but not out of danger. After a while 
the old tar missed them, sought them, and 
compelled them by threats of instant death, 
enforced by pricks of his bayonet, to leave their 
hiding place, and take share in the business in 
hand. Afterwards they fought like bull dogs. 
It was well for them that Mandeville acted as 
he did ; fur they had scarcely risen when a 
score of bullets, at least, passed through the 
place where they had been lying. 

After the two or three first volleys tlie fire 
had slackened, but it was not, therefore, the 
less dangerous. The Indians had the ad- 
vantage of superior numbers, and could 
shift their positions at pleasure. The whites 
were compelled to lie in the bottom of the 
boat, below the water mark, for its sides 
were without bulwarks. Every bullet passed 
through and through. It was only at intervals, 
and very warily, that they could rise to fire ; 
for the flash of every gun showed the position 
of the marksman, and was instantly followed 
by the reports of two or three Indian rifles. On 
the other hand they were not seen, and being 
thinly scattered over a large boat, the Winm- 
bagoes could but guess their positions. The 
fire, was therefore, slow ; for none on either 
side cared to waste ammunition. Thus, for up- 
wards of three hours, the boatmen lay in blood 
and bilge-water, deprived of the free use of 
their limbs, and wholly unable to extricate 

At last, as the night fell, Mandeville came to 
the conclusion that darkness would render the 
guns of his own party wholly useless, while it 
would not render the aim of the Winnebagoes 
a jot less certain. He, therefore, as soon as it 
was dark, stoutly called for assistance, and 
sprang into the water. Four more followed 
him. The balls rained around them, passing 

through their clothes; but tiiey persisted, and 
the boat was soon afloat. Seeing their prey 
escaping, the Winnebagoes raised a yell of 
mingled rage and despair, atid gave the whites 
a f.arewell volley. It was returned, with three 
hearty cheers, and ere a gun could be re-loaded, 
the boat had floated out of shooting distance. 

For half tiie night, a wailing voice, apparent- 
ly that of an old man, was heard, following the 
boat, at a safe distance, however. It was con- 
jectured that it was the father of him whose 
body the boat was bearing away. Subsequently 
inquiry proved this supposition to be correct. 

Thirty-seven Indians were engaged in this 
battle, seven of whom were killed, and fourteen 
were wounded. They managed to put 69.3 balls 
into and through the boat. Two of the crew 
were killed outright, two mortally, and two 
slightly wounded. Jack Mandeville's courage 
and presence of mind undoubtedly saved the 
rest, as well as the boat ; but we have never 
heard that he was rewarded in any way or 

Mr. Lindsay's boat, the rear one, reached the 
mouth of the Bad Ax about midnight. The 
Indians opened a fire upon her, which was 
promptly r turned. There was a light on 
board, at which the first gun was probably 
aimed, for that ball only hit the boat. All the 
rest passed over harmless in the darkness.* 

Great was the alarm at Prairie du Chien 
when the boats arrived there. The people left 
their houses and farms, and crowded into the 
dilapidated fort. Nevertheless, they showed 
much spirit, and speedily established a very 
effective discipline. An express was immedi- 
ately sent to Galega, and another to Fort Snel- 
ling, for assistance. A company of upwards of 

*It is stated in Neill's Minnesota, that among- the passen- 
gers on Lindsa.v's boat was Joseph Snelling, a talented son of 
the Colonel, who wrote a story of deep interest, based on 
the taets narrated. This we presume was William J. Snel- 
iing. the writer of this narrative As for the date of the 
attack on these keel boats, ,ludg:e Lookwood gives it as June 
:;6th, which Neill follows; Gen. Smith, on Judge Doty's au- 
thority, we presume, says the 30th. Whatever was the real 
date, one thing is quite certain, that the murder of Gagniers 
family and the boat attack, transpired the same day, and the 
1 ext day the first of the keel boats arrived at Prairie du 
Chien, increasing the war panic among the people. 



100 volunteers soon arrived from t4alena, and 
the minds of the inhabitants were quieted. 

In a few days, four imperfect companies of 
tlie 5lh Infantry arrived from Fort Snelling. 
Tht' commandinor officer ordered a march on the 
lied Uird's village; but as tlie volunteers re- 
fused to obey, and determined to return lioine, 
he was obliged to countermand it. 

Tlie consternation of the people of the lead 
mines was great Full half of them tied from 
the country. Shortly after, however, when 
Gen. Atkinson arrived with a full regiment, a 
consideral)le body of volunteers joined him 
from Galena, and accompanied him to the port- 
age of Wisconsin, to fight with or receive the 
submission of the Winnebagoes. 

Tlie Red Bird there appeared, in all the pai-a- 
[ihernalia of an Indian chief and warrior, and 
surrendei'ed himself to justice, together with 
his companions in the murder of Gagnier, and 
one of his 1):im(1, who had taken an active part 
in tlie atttick on the boats. They >vere incarcer- 
atjcl at Prairie dii Cliien. A dreadfnl epidemic 
broke out there about this time, ami he died in 
prison. He knew that his death was certain, 
and did not shrink from it. 

In the course of a year, tlie people of the 
lead mines increased in number and in strength 
and encroached upon the Winnebago lands. 
The Winnebagoes complained in vain. The 
next spring, the murderers of Methode, and the 
other Indian jirisoners, were tried, convicted, 
and sentenced to death. A deputation of the 
tribe went to Washington to solicit their par- 
don. President Adams granted it, on the im- 
plied condition that the tribe would cede the 
lands then in possession of the miners. The 
Winnebagoes have kept their word — the land 
has been ceded, and Madame Gagnier has been 
compensated for the loss of her husband, and 
the mutilation of her infant. We believe that 
she received, after waiting two years, the mag- 
nificent sum of $2,000.* 

•At the treaty helil «t Prairie du f 'hien with the Winneba- 
Boes. in 1829, provision was made for two seittions of land 
toTiiGRESE Qaqnier and her two ohildron, Krancoi» a»d 

We will close this true account of life be- 
yond the frontier, with an anecdote which 
places the Winnebago character in a more ami- 
ble light than anything already related. The 
militia of Prairie du Chieii, immediately after 
the affair of the boats, seized the old chief De 
Kau-ray — the same who has already been men- 
tioned. He was told that if the Red-Bird 
should not be given up within a certain time, he 
was to die in his stead. This he steadfastly 
believed. Finding that confinement injured 
his health, he requested to be permitted to 
range the country on his parole. The demand 
was granted. He was bidden to go whither he 
pleased during the day, but at sunset he was 
re(piired to return to the fort on pain of being 
consideied an old woman. He observed the 
condition religiously. At the first tap of the re- 
treat, De Kau-ray was sure to present himself 
at the gate; and this he continued to do till 
Gen. Atkinson set him at liberty. 


The following incident, found in the Western 
Courier, published at Ravenna, Ohio, Feb. 26, 
1 8.30, was read by the secretary at a meeting of 
the Wisconsin Historical Society, in Decem- 
ber, 1862: 

"There is no class of human beings on earth 
who hold a pledge more sacred and binding, 
than do the North American Indians. An in- 
stance of this was witnessed during the Winne- 
bago war of 1827, in the person of De Kau-ray, 
a celebrated chief of that Nation, who, with 
four other Indians of his tribe, was taken prisoner 
at Prairie du Chien. Col. Snelling, of the 
."ith regiment of Infantry, who then com- 
manded that garrison, dispatched a young In- 
dian into the Nation, with orders to inform the 
other chiefs of De Kau-ray's band, that unless 
those Indians who were the perpetrators of the 
horrid murders of some of our citizens, were 
brought to the fort and given up within ten 
days, De Kau-ray and the other four Indians, 

Louise; and for the United States to pay Tiiekbse GAONisit 
I I he sum of J3I) per annum for fifteen years, to be deducted 
from the annnity to said Indians. 



who were retained as hostages, would be shot 
at the end of that time. The awful sentence 
was pronounced in the presence of De Kau-ray, 
who, though proclaiming his own innocence of 
the outrages which had been committed by 
others of his Nation, declared that he feared 
not death, though it would be attended with 
serious consequences, inasmuch as he had two 
affectionate wives, and a large family of small 
children, who were entirely dependent on him 
for their support; but, if necessary, he was 
willing to die for the honor of his Nation. 

"The young Indian had been gone several 
daj's, and no intelligence was yet received 
from the murderers. The dreadful day being 
near at hand, and De Kau-ray being in a bad 
state of health, asked permission of the col- 
onel to go to the river to indulge in his 
long-accustomed habit of bathing in order 
to improve his health. Upon which, Col. 
Snelling told him if he would promise, on the 
honor of a chief, that he would not leave the 
town, he might have his liberty and enjoy all 
his privileges, until the day of the appointed ex- 
ecution. Accordingly, he first gave his hand 
to the colonel, thanking him for his friendly 
offer, then raised both his hands aloft, and in 
the most solemn adjuration, promised that he 
would not leave the bounds prescribed, and 
said 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 il-^ 
boasted honor. He was then set at liberty. He 
was advised to flee to the wilderness and make 
his escape. "But no," said he, "do you think 
I prize life above lionor ? or, that I would be- 
tray a confidence reposed in me, for the sake of 
saving my life ?" He then complacently re- 
mained until nine days of the ten which he had 
to live had elapsed, and nothing heard from the 
Nation with regard to the apprehension of the 
murderers, his immediate death became appar- 
ent; but no alteration could be seen in the 
co\intenance of the chief. It so happened that 
on that day Gen. Atkinson arrived with his 

troops from Jefferson barracks, and the order 
for the execution was countermanded, and the 
Indians permitted to repair to their homes." 


In a speech. Gen. Lewis Cass, at Burlington, 
Iowa, in June, 1855, made the following refer- 
ence to the Winnebago outbreak in 1827 : 

"Twenty-eight years have elapsed," said the 
venerable statesman, "since I passed along the 
borders of this beautiful State. ''JMme and 
chance happen to all men,' says the writer of 
old ; and time and chance have happened to 
me, since I first became identified with the 
west. In 1827 I heard that the Winnebagoes 
had assumed an attitude of hostility toward the 
whites, and that great fear and anxiety pre- 
vailed among the border settlers of tiie north- 
western frontier. I went to Green Bay, where 
I took a canoe with twelve voyagers and went 
up the Fox river and passed over the portage 
into the Wisconsin. We went down the Wiscon- 
sin until we met an ascending boat in the 
charge of Ramsay Crooks, who was long a resi- 
dent of the northwest. Here we ascertained 
that the Winnebagoes had assumed a hostile 
attitude, and that the settlers of Prairie du 
Chien were apprehensive of being suddenly 
attacked and massacred. After descending 
about seventy miles further, we came in sight 
of the Winnebago camp. It was situated upon 
a high prairie, not far from the river, and as he 
approached the shore he saw the women and 
children running across the prairie, in an oppo- 
site direction, which he knew to be a bad sign. 
After reaching the shore he went up to 
the camp. At first the Indians were sul- 
len, particularly the young men. He talked 
with them awhile, and they finally consented to 
smoke the calumet. He afterwards learned 
that one of the young Indians cocked his gun, 
and was about to shoot him, when he was forci- 
bly prevented by an old man, who struck down 
his arm. He passed down to Prairie du Chien, 
wher« he found the inhabitants in the greatest 



state of alarm. After organizing the militia, he 
had to continue his voyage to St. Louis. He 
stoppfd at (Taiena. There were then no wliite 
iiiiiahitants on either baiilv of tlie Mississippi, 
nortli of the Missouri line. Arrived at St. 
Louis, after organizing a force under Gen. Clark 
and Gen. Atkinson, he ascended the Illinois in 
his canoe, and passed into Lake Michigan with- 
out getting out of it. The water had tilled tlie 
swamps at the liead of Chicago river, whicii 
enabled the Doi/dgu'irs to navigate his canoe 
through witiiout seri(jus ilifticulty. Where Chi- 
cago now is lie found two families, one of wliich 
was that of his old friend Kinzie. This was 
the first and last time he had been at Burling- 
ton. New countries have their disadvantages 
of which tliose who come at a later day know 
little. Forty years ago flour sold at ^'2. a barrel, 
and there were liundreds of acres of corn in the 
west that were not harvested. The means of 
transportation were too expensive to allow of 
their being carried to market." 


Galena, Aug. 26, 1827. 
Dear Gkseral: — Capt. Henry, the ciiairman 
of the committee of safety, will wait on you 
at Prairie du Chien, before your departure from 
tliat place. C^apt. Henry is an intelligent gen- 
tleman, wlio understands well the situation of 
the country The letter accompanying Gov. 
Cass' communication to you has excited in some 
measure the people in tliis part of the country. 
As the principal part of the efficient force is 
preparing to accompany you on your expedition 
up the Ouisconsin, it might have a good effect 
to seiul a small regular force to tliis part of t''e 
country, and in our absence they might render 
protection to this region. 

I feel tlie importance of your having as many 
mounted men as the country can afford, to aid 
in punishing those insolent Winnebagoes who 
are wishing to unite, it would seem, in common 
all the disaffected Indians on our borders. 
From information received last night, some 

straggling Indians have been seen on our fron- 

Your friend and obedient servant, 

II. Dodge. 
To Gen. II. Atkin.son, Prairie du Chien. 

There lias repeatedly, during the past dozen 
or fifteen years, appeared in ihe papers an arti- 
cle purporting to be An Indian's li ace for Life. 
It stated, that soon after the Winnebago diffi- 
culties in 1827, that a Sioux Indian killed a 
Winnebago Indian while out hunting near the 
mouth of Root river; that the Winnebagoes 
were indignant at the act, and 2,000 of them 
assembled at Prairie du Chien, and demanded 
of Col. Taylor, commanding there, the procure- 
ment and surrender of the murderer. An officer 
was sent to the Sioux, and demanded the mur- 
derer, who was given up ; and finally was sur- 
rendered to the Winnebagoes, on condition that 
he should have a chance for his life — givingr 
him ten paces, to run at a given signal, and 
twelve Winnebagoes to pursue, each armed only 
with a tomahawk and scalping knife — but he 
out-ran them all, and saved his life. 

H. L. Dousman and B. W. Brisbois, have 
always declared that no such incident ever oc- 
curred there, and that there is 'not one word of 
truth in the statement." This note is appended 
here that future historians of our State may un- 
derstand that it is only a myth or fanciful storv. 
DANIEL M. Parkinson's kecollections of the 


[From "Collections of the Slate Historical Society of Wis- 
consin, " Vol. II. 185U.] 

In the year 1822 considerable excitement was 
created in relation to the lead mines near Ga- 
lena, and a number of persons went there from 
Sangamon county, among whom was Col. Ebe- 
nezer Brigliam, now of Blue Mounds, Dane Co., 
Wis. In 1826 the excitement and interest rela- 
tive to the lead mine country became consider- 
ably increased, and in 1827, it became intense, 
equalling almost anything pertaining to the 
California gold fever. People from almost all 
portions of the Union inconsiderately rushed to 
the mining region. 



With Col. William S. Hamilton, D. 
Brents and two otliers, I arrived at Galena on 
the 4th of July, 182'7, and on the same day ar- 
rived also a boat from St. Peter's, which had 
been attacked by the Indians a short distance 
above Prairie dvi Chien, bringing on board one 
man killed and two men wounded. In the en- 
counter with the Indians they killed two of 
them. ***»*«* 

Upon the reception of the alarming intelli- 
gence of the attack on this boat and also upon 
some of the inhabitants near Prairie du Chien 
and the reports being spread over the country, 
a scene of the most alarming and disorderly 
confusion ensued — alarm and consternation were 
depicted in every countenance — thousands 
flocking to Galenafor safety, when in fact it was 
the most exposed and unsafe place in the whole 
country. All were without arms, order or con- 
trol. The roads were lined in all directions 
with frantic and fleeing men, women and chil- 
dren, expecting every moment to be overtaken, 
tomahawked and scalped by the Indians. It 
was said, and 1 presume with truth, that the 
encampment of fugitives at \he head of Apple 
river on the first night of tlie alarm was four 
miles in extent and numbered 3,000 persons. 

In this state of alarm, confusion and disorder 
it was extremely difficult to do anything; almost 
every man's object was to leave the country, if 
possible. At length a company of riflemen was 
raised at Galena, upon the requsition of Gov. 
Cass of Michigan, who arrived there on the sec- 
ond daj after the alarm. This company was 
commanded by Abner Fields, of Vandalia, III., 
as captain and one Smith and William .S. Ham 
ilton as lieutenants, and was immediately put 
in motion for Prairie du Chien, by embarking 
on board the keel-boat Maid of Fevre river. On 
our way up the river, I acted as sergeant of the 
company, and we made several reeonnoitering 
expeditions i|ito the woods near the river., where 
Indian encampments were indicated by the ris- 
ing of smokq. In these reconnoissances we run 
the hazard of some danger, but fortunately all 

the Indians that we met were friendly disposed, 
and did not in the least sympathize with those 
who had made hostile demonstrations. 

When we arrived at Prairie du Chien we 
took possession of the barncks, under the prior 
orders of Gov. Cass, and remained there for 
several days until we gave way to Col. Snell- 
ing's troops who arrived from Fort Snelling. 
While we remained there, a most serious difficulty 
occurred between Col. Snelling, of the regular 
army, and Capt. Fields and Lieut. Smith of our 
volunteers, which eventuated in Lieut. Smith 
sending Col. Snelling a challenge and Capt. 
Fields insisted upon doing so likewise, but Col. 
Hamilton and I at length dissuaded him from 
it. Col. Snelling declined accepting Lieut. 
Smith's challenge, and immediately sent a 
corporal with a file of men to arrest Mr. Scott, 
the bearer of Smith's communication. The 
volunteers refused to surrender Scott into the 
hands of the guard, but Col. Hamilton wrote a 
note to Col. Snelling stating, in effect, that Scott 
should immediately appear before him. Accord- 
ingly Col. Hamilton and I conducted Mr. Scott 
into the presence of Col. Snelling, who inter- 
rogated him as to his knowledge of the con- 
tents of Lieut. Smith's communication; and 
upon Mr. Scott's assuring the colonel that he 
was entirely ignorant of the subject-matter, he 
was dismissed. 

Col. Snelling then addressed the volunteers 
in a pacific and conciliatory manner, which 
seemed to dispose of the matter amicably; but 
the colonel, nevertheless, refused to furnish us 
with any means of support or any mode of con- 
veyance back to Galena — as the boat in which 
we came, returned there immediately after our 
arrival. But for the noble generosity of Mr. 
Lockwood, who kindly furnished us with a boat 
and provisions, we would have been compelled 
to have made our way back to Galena on foot, 
or as best we could, without provisions. During 
our entire stay at the garrison, we received the 
kindest treatment and most liberal hospitality 
at the hands of Mr. Lockwood. At the time of 



our arrival at Prairie du Chien, the citizens had 
in their custody as hostages for the good con- 
duct of their Nation, three Indians, one of 
whom was the well-known chief De-Kau-iay. 
lie disclaimed on the part of his Nation as a 
whole, any intention to engage in hostilities 
with the whites; he was, however, retained 
some time as a hostage before being released. 

During our absence, another volunteer com- 
j)any was raised, commanded by Gen. Dodge, 
who was constantly in the field with his mounted 
force, keeping in check the approach of the 
enemy. During his rangings, he took young 
Win-iie-shiek, son of. the chief Win-ne-shiek, 
who was detained as a hostage for some time. 
No farther disturbances of a serious character 
took place that season; and in tlie succeeding 
autumn, (^ens. Atkinson and Dodge held a 
council or treaty with the Winnebagoes. After 
this we had no more Indian troubles till 1832. 


In the winter of 1825-26, the wise men at 
Washington took it into their heads to remove 
the troops from Fort Crawford to Fort Snelling, 
and abandon the former. 'J'his measure was 
then supposed to have been brought about on 
the representation of Col. Snelling of Fort 
Snelling, who disliked Prairie du Chien for 
difficulties he had with some of the principal 
inhabitants. During the winter there were 
confined in the guar<lhouse at Fort Crawford 
two Winnebago Indians, for some of their su])- 
posed dishonest acts; but what they were 
charged with, I do not now recollect. At that 
time, as already mentioned, our mails from St. 
Louis, the east and south, came via Springfield 
to Galena, and the postmaster at Prairie du 
Chien sent to Galena for the mails of tbat place 
and Fort Snelling. An order would frequently 
arrive by steamboat countermanding a previous 
ordir for the abandonment of the fort, before 
the arrival of first order by mail, and this mat- 
ter cnniiiiued during the summer of 18-26, and 
until Ociol)er, when a positive order arrived, 

directing the commandant of Fort Crawford to 
abandon the fort, and proceed with the troops 
to Fort Snelling; and if he could not procure 
ransportation, to leave the provisions, ammu- 
nition and fort in charge of some citizen. 

But a few days previous to this order, there 
had been an alarming report circulated, that the 
Winnebagoes were going to attack Fort Craw- 
ford, and the commandant set to work repairing 
the old fort, and making additional defenses. 
During this time the positive order arrived, and 
the i)recipitancy with which the fort was aban- 
doned during the alarm was communicated to 
the Indians through the half-breeds residing at 
or visiting the pUce, which naturally caused 
the Winnebagoes to believe that the troops liad 
fled through fear of them. The commandant 
took with him to Fort Snelling the two Winne- 
bagoes confined in Fort Crawford, leaving be- 
hind some provisions, and all the damaged 
arms, with a brass swivel and a few wall pieces, 
in charge of John Marsh, the then sub-agent at 
this place. 

The Winnebagoes, in the fall of 182G, ob- 
tained from the traders their usual credit for 
goods, and went to their hunting grounds ; but 
early in the winter a report became current 
among the traders that the Winnebagoes had 
heard a rumor that the Americans and English 
were going to war in the spring ; and lieuce 
they were holding councils to decide upon the 
course they should adopt, hunting barely 
enough to obtain what they wanted to subsist 
upon in the meantime. 

Mr. Brisbois said to me several times dur- 
ing t'le winter, that he feared some outrages 
from the Winnebagoes in the spring, as from 
all he could gather they were bent on war, 
which I ought to have believed, as Mr. Bri-sbois 
had been among them engaged in trade over 
forty years. But I thought it im])Ossible that 
the Winnebagoes, surrounded, as they were by 
Americans, and troops in the country, should 
for a moment seriously entertain such an idea. 
I supposed it a false alarm, and gave myself 



very little uneasiness about it ; but in the 
spring, when they returned From their hunts, I 
found that they paid much worse than usual, 
although they were not celebrated for much 
punctuality or honesty in paying their debts. 
It was a general custom with. the traders, » hen 
an Indian paid his debts in the spring pretty 
well, on his leaving, to let him have a little 
ammunition, either as a ])reseMt or on credit. 
A Winnebago by the name of Wah-wah-peck- 
ah, had taken a credit from me, and paid me 
but a small part of it in the spring ; and when 
I reproached him, lie was disposed to be impu- 
dent about it ; and when his party were about 
going, he applied to rae as usual for ammunition 
for the summer, and insisted upon liaving some, 
but I told him if he had behaved well, and paid 
me his credit better, that I would have given 
him some, but that he had behaved so bad that 
I would not give him any, and he went away 
in a surly mood. 

A man by the name of Methode, I think, a 
half-breed of some of the tribes of the north, 
had arrived here, sometime in the summer of 
1826, with his wife, and, I think, five children ; 
and, sometime in March of 1827, he went witli 
his family, up the Yellow or Painted Rock creek, 
about twelve miles above tlie Prairie, on the 
Iowa side of the Mississijipi river, to make 
sugar. The sugar season being over, and he 
not returning, and hearing nothing from him, 
a party of his friends went to look for him, and 
found his camp consumed, and himself, wife 
and children burned nearly to cinders, and she 
at the time enciente. They were .so crisped 
and cindered that it was impossible to deter- 
mine whether they had been murdered and then 
burned, or whether their camp had accidentally 
caught on tire and consumed them. It was 
generally believed that the Winnebagoes had 
murdered and burnt them, and Red Bird was 
suspected to have been concerned in it; but I 
am more inclined to think, that if murdered by 
Indians, it was done by some Fox war party 
searchinfir for Sioux. 

In the spring of this year, 1827, while a Chip- 
pewa chief called Hole-in-the-day, with a part 
of bis band, visited Fort Snelling on business 
with the government, and while under the guns 
of the fort, a Sioux warrior shot one of the 
Chippewas. The Sioux was arrested by the 
troops, and confined in the guard-house. The 
Chippewas requested Col. Snelling to deliver 
the Sioux to them, to be dealt with after their 
manner; to which he agreed, provided they 
would give him a chance to run for his life. To 
this they acceded. The Sioux was sent outside 
of the fort, where the Chippewas were armed 
with tomahawks and war clubs. He was to be 
allowed a fair start, and at a signal started, 
and one of the swiftest of the Chippewas 
armed with a club and tomahawk after him, to 
overtake and kill him if he could, which lie soon 
effected, as the Sioux did not run fast,and when 
overtaken made no resistance. 'I'he Winneba- 
goes hearing a rumor of this, got the news 
among them that the two Winnebagoes con- 
fined there (for the murder of Methode and 
family) had been executed. 

During the spring of 1827, the reports about 
the Winnebagoes bore rather a threatening as- 
|iect; but, as I said before, situated as they 
were I did not believe they would commit any 
depredations. Under this belief, and having 
urgent business in New York to purchase my 
goods, I started for that city on the 2.5th of 
June; it then took about six months to go and 
return. Mine was the only ]Mirely American 
f.imily at the prairie, after the garrison left. 
There was Thomas McNair, who had married a 
French girl of the prairie, and John Marsh, the 
sub-Indian agent, who had no family, and there 
were besides three or four Americans who had 
been discharged from the army. Without ap- 
piehension of danger from the Indians, I left 
my family, which consisted of Mrs. Lockwood, 
and her brother, a young man of between six- 
teen and seventeen years of age, who was clerk 
in charge of the store, and a servant girl be- 



longing to one of the tribes of New York civi- 
lized Indians settled near Green Bay. 

I started to go by way of Green bay and the 
lakes for New York, in a boat up the Wiscon- 
sin, and down the Fox river to Green Bay; 
thence in a vessel to Buffalo, and down the 
canal to Albany, and thence by steamboat to 
New York city. About 4 o'clock in the after- 
noon of the first day's journey up the Wiscon- 
sin, I came to an island where were sitting 
three Winnebagoes smoking, the oldest called 
Wah-wah-peck-ah, who had a credit of me the 
fall previous and had paid but little of it in 
the spring; the other two were young men not 
known to me by name. They had some venison 
hanging on a pole, and we stopped to purchase 
it. As I stepped on shore I discovered an ap- 
pearance of cold reserve unusual in Indians in 
such meetings, and as I went up to them I said, 
'bonjour'' the usual French salutation, which 
they generally understood; but Wah-wah-peck- 
ah said that he would not say '■bonjour'' to me. 
Upon which I took hold of his hand and shook 
it, asking him why he would not say, bonjour, to 
me? H(> inquired what the news was. I told 
him I had no news. He told me that the Win- 
nebagoes confined at Fort Snelling had been 
killed. I assured him that it was not ti'ue, that 
I had seen a person lately from that fort, who 
told me of the death of the Sioux, but that the 
Winnebagoes were alive. He then gave nu; to 
understand tliat if such was the case, it was well; 
but if the Winiicljagoes were killed, tliey would 
avenge it. I succeeded in jiurchasing the venison, 
giving thorn some powder in exchange, and as 
I was about to step on board of my boat, Wah- 
wah-peck-ah wanted some whisky, knowing 
that we always carried some for our men. 

I directed one of the men to give them each a 
drink, which Wah-wah-peck-ah refused, and 
taking up his cup that he had by him, he 
showed by signs that he wanted it filled; and 
believing that the Indians were sefeking some 
pretense for a quarrel as an excuse for doing 

mischief, I thought it most prudent under the 
circumstances to comply. 

There were among the boats' crew some old 
iioyff(/<3?<r«, well acquainted with Indian manners 
and customs, who, from the conduct of these 
Indians, became alarmed. We, however, em- 
barked, watching the Indians, each of whom 
stood on the bank with his gun in his hand. 
As it was late in the day, we proceeded a few 
miles up the river and encamped for the night. 
As soon as the boat left the island, the three 
Indians each got into his hunting canoe, and 
the two young Indians came up on either side 
opposite the bow of the boat, and continued 
thus up the river until we encamped while 
Wah-wah-peck-ah ke])t four or five rods behind 
the boat. They encamped with us, and com- 
menced running and )>laying with the men on 
the sand beach; and after a little the young 
Indians proposed to go hunting deer by candle- 
light, and asked me to give them some candles to 
hunt with, which I did, with some ammunition, 
and they promised to return with venison in 
the morning. After they had gone, Wah-wah- 
peck-ah proposed also to go hunting, and begged 
some candles and ammunition, but remained in 
camp over night. Morning came, but the young 
Indians did not return, and I saw no more of 
them. In the morning, after Wah-wah-peck-ah 
had begged something more, he started, pre- 
tending to go down the river, and went as we 
sup]iosed; but about an hour afterward, as we 
were passing on the right of the upper end of 
the island on which we had encamped, I saw 
Wah-wah-jiock-ali coming up on the left. He 
looked very surly, ami we exchanged no words, 
but we were all satisfied that he was seeking 
some good opportunity to shoot me, and from 
the singular conduct of the Indians, I and my 
men were considerably alarmed. But about 9 
o'clock in the morning, meeting a band of In- 
dians from the portage of Wisconsin, who ap- 
peared to be glad to see me, and said they were 
going to Prairie du Chiou, my fears with those 
of the men were somewhat allayed. I wrote 



with my pencil a hasty line to my wife, which 
the Indians promised to deliver, but they never 
did, as they did not go there. 

This day, the "ibth of June, we proceeded up 
the Wisconsin without seeing any Indians until 
we came near Prairie du Baic, when an Indian, 
alone in a hunting canoe, came out of some nook 
and approached us. He was gullen, and we 
could get no talk out of him. We landed on 
Prairie du Bale, and he stopped also; and a few 
moments thereafter, a canoe of Menomonees 
arrived from Prairie du (hien, bringing a brief 
note from John Marsh, saying the Winnebagoes 
had murdered a man of mixed French and negro 
blood, named Rijeste Gagnier, and Solomo}i 
Lipcap, and for me, for God's sake, to return. 
I immediately got into the canoe with the Me- 
nomonees, and directed my men to i:)roceed to 
tlie portage, and if I did not overtake' them to 
go on to Green BaJ^. I proceeded down the 
river with the Menoraoiues, and when we had 
descended to the neighborhood where we had 
fallen in with the Indians the day before, we 
met Wah-wah-peck-ali coming up in his hunting 
canoe a'one, having with him his two guns. 
He inquired if I was going to tiie Prairie. I 
tiild hira I was. He then told me that the 
whiskey at the Prairie was .shut up, but did not 
tell nie of the murders, and asked me that should 
lie come to the Prairie whether I would let him 
have some whiskey? I told hira I certainly 
would if he brought some furs, not wishing then 
to make any explanation, or to enter into any 
argument with him. 

About this time, we heard back of an island, 
and on the southern shore of the Wisconsin, the 
Winnebagoes singing their war songs and danc- 
ing, with which I was familiar; and so well 
satisfied was I that Wah-wah-peck-ah was only 
seeking a favorable opportunity to shoot me, 
that if I had had a gun where he met us, I be- 
lieve that I should have shot him. After talk- 
ing with him the Menomonees moved down the 
river, and arrived at tlie mouth of the VV^iscon- 
sin about dark without seeing any more Winne- 

bagoes. It was so dark that the Menomonees 
thought that we had better stop until morning, 
and we accordingly crawled into the bushes 
without a fire and fought mosquitoes all night, 
and the next morning, the 27th, proceeded to 
the Prairie. I went to my house and found it 
vacant, and went to the old village where I 
found my family and most of the inhabitants of 
the Prairie, assembled at the house of Jean 
Brunet, who kept a tavern. Mr. Brunet had a 
quantity of square timber about him, and the 
people proposed building breast-works with it. 

I learned on my arrival at the Prairie that 
on the preceding day, the 26th, Red Bird, (wlio, 
when dressed, always wore a red coat and called 
himself English), went to my house with two 
other Indians, and entering the cellar kitchen, 
loaded their guns in the presence of the servant 
girl, and went up through the hall into Mrs. 
Lockwood's bed-room where she was sitting 
alone. The moment the Indians entered her 
room she believed they came to kill her, and 
immediately passed into and through the parlor, 
and crossed the hall into the store to her broth- 
er, where she found Duncan Graham, who had 
been in the country about forty years as a trader, 
and was known by all the Indians as an Eng- 
lishman. He had been a captain in the British 
Indian de]iartment during the War of 1812, and 
a part of the time was commandant at Prairie 
du (hien. The Indians followed Mrs. Lock- 
wood into the store, and Mr. Graham by some 
means induced them to leave the house. 

They then proceeded to McNair's Coulee, about 
two miles from the village, at the lower end of 
Prairie du Chien, where lived Rijeste Gagnier; 
his « ife was a mixed blood of French and Sioux 
extraction, ith two children ; and living with 
him was an old discharged American soldier by 
the name of Solomon Lipcap. The Winneba- 
goes commenced a quarrel with Gagnier, and 
finally shot him, I believe, in the house. Lip- 
cap, at work hoeing in the garden near the 
house, they also shot. During the confusion, 
Mrs. Gagnier seized a gun, got out at the back 



window with her boy about three years old on 
her back, and proceeded to the village with the 
startling news. The cowardly Indians followed 
lier a part of the way, but dared not attack her. 
On her arrival at the village a party wont to 
the scene of murder, and found and brought 
away the dead, and the daughter of Mr. Gagnier, 
about one year old, whom the mother in her 
fright had forgotten. The Indians had scalped 
her and inflicted a severe wound in her neck, 
and left her for dead, and had thrown iier un- 
der the bed, but she was found to be still alive. 
She got well, and arriving at womanhood got 
married, and has raised a family of children ; 
she is yet alive and her eldest daughter was but 
recently married. 

The peo])Ie had decided not to occupy the old 
fort, as a report had been circulated that the 
Indians had said that they intended to burn it 
if the inhabitants should take refuge there. 
During the day of the 2'7th, the people occupied 
themselves in making some breast-works of the 
timber about IMr. Biunet's tavern getting the 
swivel and wall ]iieces from the fort, and the 
condemned muskets and repairing them, and 
concluded they would defend themselves, each 
commanding, none obeying, but every one giv- 
ing liis opitiion freely. 

About sunset one of the two keel-boats ar- 
rived that had a few days previously gone to 
Fort Snelling with supplies for the garrison, 
having on board a dead Indian, two dead men 
of the crew and four wounded. The dead and 
wounded of the crew were inhabitants of Prairie 
du Cliien who had shipped on the up-bound 
tri|). They reported that they had been attacked 
the evening before, about sunset, by the Win- 
nebago *Indians, near the mouth of Bad Ax 

•Ex-Gov. Keynolrts. of Illinois, in his volume of his Life. 
and Timc^, thus states the iuiraerliivte cause of this attack. 
That somewhere al)ove Prairie l>u Chien on their upward trip, 
they stopped at a lartre camp of Winnelia^^o Indians, gave 
them some tiijuor freely and pot Iheni drunk, when they 
forced six or seven srjuaws, stupelie^l with liquor, on board 
the Itoats, for cnrntiA. anil linital pur]i'i.vcs, and kept them 
during their voyage to Kort Snelling and on their return. 
When the Winnebago Indians became sober, and fully con- 
scious of the injury done them, the.v mustered ail (heir 
forces, amounting to several hundred and attacked the fore- 
most of the descending boats in which their squaws were 
contined. But this story has since been proven to be without 

river, and the boat received about 500 shots, 
judging from the marks on its bow and sides. 
The Indians were mostly on an island on the 
west of the chautiel, near to which the boat 
had to pass, and the wind blowing strong from 
the east, drifted llie boat towards the shore, 
where the Indians were, as the steering oar had 
been abandoned by tlie steersman. During this 
time, two of the Indians succeeded in getting 
on board of the boat. One of them mounted the 
roof, and fired in from the fore part; but he was 
soon shot and fell off into the river, 'i'he other 
Indian took the steering oar and endeavored to 
steer the boat to the island. He was also shot 
and brought down in the boat where he fell. 
During all this time the Indians kept up a 
lot fire. The boat was fast drifting towards 
a sand bar near the sliore, and tliey would 
all have been murdered had it not been for 
the brave, resolute conduct of an old soldier 
on board, called Saucy Jack (his surname I do 
not remember), who, during the hottest of the 
fire, jumped over at the bow and pushed the 
boat off, and where he must have stood the boat 
was literally covered with ball marks, so that 
his escape seemed a miracle. They also report- 
ed that early the day before the attack, they 
were lashed to the other boat drifting, and that 
they liad grounded on a sand bar and separated, 
since which time they Iiad not seen or heard 
anything of the other boat, and thought proba- 
bly that it had fallen into the hands of the In- 

This created an additional alarm among the 
inhabitants. The same evening my boat re- 
turned, the men becoming too much alarmed to 
proceed. That night sentinels were posted by 
the inhabitants within the breast-work.s, who 
saw, in imagination, a great many Indians prowl- 
ing about in the darkness ; and in the morning 
there was a great variety of opinion as to what 
was best to be done for the safety of the place, 
and appearances betokened a great deal of un- 
easiness in the mindti of all classes. 



On the morning of the 28th I slept rather 
late, owing to the fatigue of the preceding day. 
My brother-in-law awakened me, and told me 
the people had got into some difficulty, and that 
they wished me to come out and see if I could 
not settle it. I went out on the gallery, and 
inquired what the difficulty was ; and heard the 
various plans and projects of defense proposed 
by different persons. Some objected to stayiTig 
in the village and protecting tl e property of 
the villagers while theirs, outside the village, 
was equally exposed to the pillage of the In- 
dians. Others were for remaining and fortify- 
ing where thoy were, and others still urged the 
repairing of the old fort. As the eminence on 
which my house stood overlooked tiie most of 
the prairie, some were for concentrating our 
people there and fortifying it. After hearing 
these different projects, I addressed them some- 
thing as follows: "As to your fortifying my 
house, you can do so, if it is thought best, but I 
do not wish you to go there to protect it ; I have 
abandoned it, and if the Indians burn it, so be 
it; but there is one thing, if we intend to pro- 
tect ourselves from the Indians, we must keep 
together, and some one must command." 

Some one then nominated me as commander, 
but I said: "No, I would not attempt to com- 
mand you, but here is Thomas McNair, who 
holds from the governor a commission of cap- 
tain over the militia of this place and has a 
right to command; if you will agree to obey 
him implicitly, I will set the example of obedi- 
ence to his orders, and will, in that case, furnish 
you with powder and lead as long as you want 
to shoot (I being the only person having those 
articles in the place)^ but unless you agree to 
obey McNair, I will put my family and goods 
into my boats and go down the river, as I will 
not risk myself with a mob under no control." 
Upon this they agreed to acknowledge Mr. Mc- 
Nair as commander, and I was satisfied that he 
would take advice upon all measures undertaken. 
Joseph Brisbois was lieutenant, and Jean Erunet 
was ensign, both duly commissioned by the 

governor. Capt. McNair ordered a move of all 
the families, goods wiih the old guns, to the 
fort, and it was near sunset before we had all 
got moved there. 

About that time we discovered the skiff of 
the other keel-boat coming around a point of 
an island near Yellow river, about three miles 
distant; but we could not discover whether they 
were white men or Indi:uis in the canoe, and of 
course it created an alarm, but in a few moments 
tiiereafter, the keel-boat iiove in sight and the 
alarm ceased. It soon arrived, reporting that 
they had received a few shots in passing the 
places where the other boat had been attacked, 
but had received no injury. On this boat 
Joseph Snelling, son of Col. Snelling, returned 
to Prairie du Ciiien. Joseph Snelling and my- 
self acted as sujjernumeraries under Capt. Mc- 
Nair. The government of Fort Crawford was 
conducted by a council of the captain and those 
wdio acted under him. It was immediately re- 
solved to repai the old fort as well as possible 
for defense, and the fort and block-house were 
put in as good order as circumstances and ma- 
terials would admit. Dirt was thrown up two 
or three feet high around the bottom logs of 
the fort, which w ere rotten and dry, and would 
easily ignite. Joseph Snelling was put in coni- 
mand of one of the block-houses, and Jean Bru- 
nei of the other, with a few picked men in each, 
who were trained to the use of the swivel and 
wall pieces that were found and mounted tlieie- 
in; and a number of baiivls were ])laced around 
the quarters tilled with « ater, with orders, in 
case of an attack, to cover the roof of the 
building with blankets, etc., and to keep them 
wet. All the blacksmiths were put in requisition 
to repair the condemned muskets fotmd in the 
fort, and, musteiing our force, we found of men 
and women about ninety that could handle a 
musket in case of an attack. 

The next day after taking possession of the 
fort, J. 15. Loyer, an old voyageiir, was engaged 
to cross the Mississippi and go back through 
the country, now the State of Iowa, to inform 



Col. Snelling, commanding Fort Snelling, of 
our situation. For this service Loyer was prom- 
ised fifty dollars, and furnished with a horse 
to ride and i)rovisions, and Duncan Graham 
was engaged to accompany him, for which he 
was to receive twenty dollars, provisions and 
a horse to ride; and for these payments, I be- 
came personally responsible. 

Gov. Cass, who had come to Butte des Morts, 
on the Fox river, to hold a treaty with the Win- 
nebagoes, learned from rumer that there was 
dissatisfaction among thom, and starting in his 
canoe,' arrived at Prairie du Chien on the 
morning of the 4th of July. He ordered the 
company of militia into the service of the 
United States, and appointed me quarter-mas- 
ter and commissary, with tlie request that I 
would use my uwii funds for the supply of the 
department, and that he would sec it refunded; 
and, fiirtliermorc, assumed the debt for anmiii- 
nition and provisions already advanced, and 
also the expenses of the express to Fort Snell- 
ing, and direc^ted me to issue to the troops a 
keel-boat load of tiour, that I previously receijit- 
ed for to one of the agents of the contractors foi 
Fort Snelling, who feared to go farther with it. 

After these arrangements had been made, 
Gov. Cass proceeded iu his canoe to Galena, 
and raised a volunteer company under the late 
Col Abner Fields as captain, and assigned him 
to the command of Fort Crawford. Lieut. Mar- 
tin Thomas, of the United States ordnance de- 
partment, and then stationed at the arsenal 
near Si. Louis, who happened to be at Galena, 
came up and mustered the two companies of the 
militia into the sei^vice of the United States; 
and contracted with Phineas Black, of the vil- 
lage of Louisiana, in Missouri, wliom he found 
at Galena, for a quantity of pork which was 
sent up by the boat tjiat brought the volunteer 
company. Gov. Cass proceeded from Galena to 
St. Louis to confer with Gen. Atkinson, then 
in command of JeflFersm l)arracks and of the 
wcMern military department. This resulted in 
Gen. Atkinson's moving up the Mississippi with 

the disposable force under command at Jef- 
ferson barracks. During this time Col. Snell- 
ing came down th« Mississippi with two com- 
panies of the 5th regiment of United States In- 
fantry, and assumed the command of Fort 
Crawford, and soon after discharged the Galena 
volunteer company, as they could not well be 
brought under military discipline. But the 
Prairie du Chien company was retained in ser- 
vice until some time in the month of August, 
for whicli service, through the fault of some 
one, they never received any pay. 

During this time Gen. Atkinson arrived with 
the troops from Jefferson barracks, having on 
his way up dispatched a volunteer force under 
Gen. Dodge from Galena, to proceed by land 
to tlie portage of Wisconsin. When Gen. At- 
kinson, with great difficulty, owing to the low 
state of the water in the Wisconsin, arrived at 
tlie portage, he mot old grey-headed Day-Kau- 
Ray, with his Viand, who, finding himself sur- 
rounded by the volunteers in the rear, and 
Gen. Atkinson's force of regulars in front, and 
a coin]iany of volunteers from Green Bay, con- 
cluded to disclaim any unfriendly feelings to- 
wards the United States, and disavowed any 
(ionnection with the murders on the Mississip|)i. 
Gen. Atkinson, on these assurances of Day- 
Kau-Ray, returned, but ordered the occupation 
of Fort Crawford by two companies of trooj>s. 
Notwithstanding these murders of our citizens 
and movements of troops, the wise men at 
Washington, with about as much judgment as 
they generally decide upon Indian affairs, de- 
cided that this was not an Indian war. 

After the people had taken possession of the 
fort, and before the arrival of Gen. Cass, Indi- 
ans were seen in the village, and a guard was 
sent out to take them and bring them to the 
fort. They made no resistance, but siiripndered 
themselves and were brought to the guard 
house. One proved to be the famous Red Bird, 
who headed the party fliat murdered Gagnier 
and liipcap ; another was Wali-wah-peck-ah, the 
Indian 1 had met up the Wisconsin river, and 




whose conduct had so much alarmed me and my 
men ; the other was a young Indian whose 
name I do not recollect. There heing no charge 
of crime against Wah-wah-peck-ah and the 
young Indian, after the United States troops 
were stationed at Fort Crawford, they were dis- 
charged ; and Red Bird was retained in the 
guard-house, where he died before he was tried 
for the murder of Gagnier and Lipcap. 


On the 1st of September, 1827, Maj. Wil- 
liam Whistler, with government troops, arrived 
at the portage ; and, while there, an express 
arrived from Gen. Atkinson, announcing his ap- 
proach, and directing him to halt and fortify 
himself, and await his arrival. The object of 
the joint expedition of Gen. Atkinson from Jef- 
ferson barracks, below St. Louis, and of Maj. 
Whistler, from Fort Howard, at Green Bay, 
was to capture those who had committed the 
murders at Prairie du Chien, and put a stop to 
any further aggression. The Winnebagoes 
were advised that the security of their people 
lay in the surrender of the murderers of the 
Gagnier family. While Maj. Whistler was at 
the portage, he received a call in a mysterious 
way. An Indian came to his tent and informed 
him that, at about 3 o'clock the next day, "they 
will come in." In reply to the question, "who 
will come in ?" he said, "Red Bird and We- 
Kau." After making this answer he retired by 
the way he came. At 3 o'clock the same day, 
another Indian came and took position in nearly 
the same place and in the same way, when to 
like questions he gave like answers; and at sun- 
down a third came, confirming what the two 
had said, adding, that he had, to secure that ob- 
ject, given to the families of the murderers near- 
ly all his property. 

There was something heroic in this voluntary 
surrender. The giving away of property to the 
families of the guilty parties had nothing to do 
with their determination to devote themselves 
for the good of their people, but only to recon- 

cile those who were about to be bereaved to the 
dreadful expedient. The heroism of the pur- 
pose is seen in the fact that the murders com- 
mitted at Prairie du Chien were not wanton, 
but in retaliation for wrongs committed on this 
people by the whites. The parties murdered at 
the prairie were doubtless innocent of the 
wrongs and outrages of which the Indians com- 
plained; but the law of Indian retaliation does 
not require that he alone who commits a wrong 
shall suffer for it. One scalp is held due for an- 
other, no matter whose head is taken, provided 
it be torn from the crown of the family, or peo- 
ple who may have made a resort to this law a 

About noon of the day following there were 
seen descending the mound on the portage a 
body of Indians. Some were mounted and 
some were on foot. By the aid of a glass the 
Americans could discern the direction to be to- 
wards their position. They bore no arms,and no 
one was at a loss to understand that the promise 
made by the three Indians was about to be ful- 
filled. In the course of half an hour they had 
aproached within a short distance of the cross- 
ing of Fox river, when on a sudden singing was 
heard. Those who were familiar with the air 
said, "It is a death song." When still nearer 
some present who knew him said, "It is Red 
Bird singing his death song." The moment a 
halt was made, preparatory to crossing over, two 
scalp yells were heard. The Menomonees and 
other Indians who had accompanied the troops 
were lying carelessly about the ground, regard; 
less of what was going on; but when the "scalp 
yells" were uttered, they sprang to their feet 
as one man, seized their rifles, and were ready 
for battle. They were at no loss to know what 
these yells were; but they had not heard with 
suflicient accuracy to deci-de whether they indi- 
cated scalps to be taken or given, but doubtless 
inferred the first. 

Barges were sent across to receive and an 
escort of military to accompany them within 



the lines. The white flag which had been seen 
in the distance was borne by Red Bird. 

And now the advance of the Indians liad 
reached half up the ascent of the bluff on which 
was the encampment. In the lead wasCar-i-mi- 
nie, a distinguished chief. Arriving on the 
level upon which was the encampment of tlie 
Americans, order being called, Car-i-mi-nie 
spoke, saying, "They are here. Like braves 
they have come in; treat them as braves; do 
not put.thera in irons." This address was made 
to Col. McKenney. The latter told him he 
was not the big captain. His talk must be 
made to Maj. Whistler, who would do what was 
right. Mr. jNIarsli, the sub-agent, being there, 
an advance was made to him, and a hope ex- 
]iressed that the prisoners might be turned over 
to him. 

The military had been previously drawn 
out in line. The Menoraonee and Wabatickii 
(Oneida) Indians were in groups uijon tlicir 
haunches, on the left tlank. On the right was 
the band of music, a little in advance of tlic 
liiir. In front of the center, about ten paci> 
ilistant, were the murderers. On their right 
and left were those who had accompanied them, 
forming a semi-circle; the magnificent Red 
l^ird and the miserable looking We-Kau, a little 
in advance of the center. All eyes were fixed 
on Red Bird. In height he was about six feet, 
straight, but without restraint. His jiroportions 
Were those of most exact symmetry; and these 
embraced the entire man from his head to his 

He and We-Kau were told to sit down. At 
this moment the band struck up Plcyel's hymn. 
Everything was still. Red Bird turned his 
eyes toward the band. The music having 
ceased, he took up his pouch, and taking from 
it kinnikinnic and tobacco, cut the latter in the 
palm of his hand, after tiie Indian fashion, 
then rubbing the two together, filled the bowl 
of his calumet, struck fire on a bit of punk with 
his flint and steel, lighted and smoked it. All 

sat except the speaker. The substance of what 
they said was as follows: 

They were required to bring in the mur- 
derers. They had no power over any except 
two; the third had gone away; and these bad 
voluntarily agreed to come in and give them- 
selves up. As their friends they had come 
with them. They hoped their white brother 
would agree to accept the horses, of which 
there were perhaps twenty; the meaning of 
which was, to take them in commutation for 
the lives of their two friends. They asked 
kind treatment for them, and earnestly besought 
that they might not be put in irons, and con- 
cluded by asking for a little tobacco and some- 
thing to eat. 

They were answered and told in substance 
that they had done well thus to come in. By 
having done so they had turned away our guns 
and saved their peo])lc. They were admonished 
against placing themselves in a like sit\iation 
in the future, and advised, when they were 
aggrieved, not to resort to violence, but to go 
to their agent, who would inform the Great 
Father of their complaints, and he would re- 
dress their grievances; that their friends should 
be treated kindly, and tried by the same laws, 
by which their Gieat Father's white children 
were tried; that for the present Red Bird and 
We-Kau should not be put in irons; that they 
should all have something to eat and tobacco 
to smoke. 

Having heard this, Red Bird stood up; tlie 
commanding officer, ]Maj. Whistler, a few paces 
in front of the center of the line facing liim. 
After a moment's pause and a quick surve)- of 
the troops, he spoke, saying: "I am ready." 
Then advancing a step or two, lie paused say- 
ing, "I do not wish to be put in irons; let me 
be free. I have given away my life; it is gone" 
(stooping and taking some dust between his 
thumb and finger and blowing it away), "like 
that," eyeing.the dust as it fell and vanished 
from his sight, adding, "I would not take it 
back, it is gone." Having thus spoken, he 



threw bis hands behind him and marched up to 
Maj. Whistler, breast to breast. A platoon 
was wlieeled backward from the center of the 
line, when, the major stepping aside, Red Bird 
and We-Kau marched through the line, in 
charge of a file of men, to a tent provided for 
them in the rear, where a guard was set over 
them. The comrades of the two captives then 
left the ground by the way they had come, tak- 
ing with them our advice and a supply of meat, 
Hour and tobacco. 

We-Kau, the miserable looking being, the ac- 
complice of Red Bird, was in all things the 
oj>positeof that unfortunate brave. Never were 
two persons so totally unlike. The one seemed 
a prince, and as if born to command and wor- 
thy to be obeyed; the other as if he had been 
born to be hanged; meager, cold, dirty in his 
person and dress, crooked in form like the 
starved wolf; gaunt, hungry, and blood-thirsty; 
his entire appearance indicating the presence of 
a spirit wary, cruel and treacherous. The pris- 
oners were committed into safe keeping at 
Prairie du Chien to wait their trial in the reg- 
ular courts of justrice for murder. 

last act in the winnebago war. 
John Quincy Adams,Pbesident of the United 

States of Amekica. 
To all wJiO shall see these presents, Greeting: 

Whereas, at a court of Oyer and Terminer, 
held at the village of Prairie du Chien, in the 
month of September, A. D. 1828. Wa-ni-ga, 
otherwise called the Sun, and Chick-hong-sic, 
otherwise called Little Beuffe, were convicted 
of the offense of murder in the second degree, 
and the said Chick-hong-sic, otherwise called 
Little Beuflfe, was also convicted of another 
offense of murder in the second degree; And, 
whereas, also it appears satisfactorily to me 
that the clemency of the executive may be ex- 
tended to the said convicts without injury to 
the public; 

Now, therefore, I, John Quincy Adams, Presi- 
dent of the United States of America, in con- 
sideration of the promises,divers other good and 

sufficient causes one hereunto moving, have 
granted and do hereby grant to the said Wa-ni- 
ga, otherwise called the Sun, and to the said 
Chick-hong-sic, otherwise called Little Beuffe, 
my full and free pardon for the offenses afore- 

In testimony whereof I have hereunto subscribed 
my name, and caused the seal of the LTnited 
States to be affixed to these presents. Given 
at the city of Washington this third day of 
November, A. D. , 1828 and of the Indepen- 
dence of the United States the fifty-third. 
By the President; J. Q. Adams. 

H. Clay, Secretary of State.* 


My father was born in St. Louis; he came 
to Prairie du Chien about the time of the last 
war with England. 

My mother Theresa Chalefau, was born in 
Prairie du Chien; her father came to Prairie du 
Chien from Canada, before the last war with 

I was born in this place (now called French- 
town) Aug. 15, 1826. The following spring 
my father moved his family to a house on what 
is now known as the Ackerly place, a short dis- 
tance below the limits of " Lower Town. " 
The house had only one room. It was there 
that the murder of father and Lipcap, and the 
terrible mutilation of myself occurred. 

I will tell the story as learned from my mother. 
June 10, 1827, my father visited the village of 
Prairie du Chien; the afternoon of that day 
mother noticed there were skulking Indians on 
the bluff east of the house, partially concealed, 
but being accustomed to seeing Indians almost 
daily, was not alarmed. Father did not return 

*Copied from the original pardon. 

t The autobio8:rahical account which follows was taken 
from the lips of Louisa Cherrler mcc Gagnier). wife of Coasm 
(usually known as Comb) Cherrier. Mr. Cherrler, wife and 
children, reside in what is usually known as "French Town, " 
in the town of Prairie du Chien. What Mrs. Cherrier re- 
lates is the story often told her by her mother, Theresa Gaer- 
nier, wife of Ri'geste Gaf^nier. It will be noticed that the 
narrative differs in some important particulars from that 
given previously in this chapter; but there are so many ad- 
ditional and exceedingly interesting statements that, iu the 
main, are doubtless correct, as to justif.v the insertion of 
this relation as a sequel to the so-called "Winnebago War." 



liome until about noon of the next day, (June 
11). He was accompanied by his half brother, 
Paschal Menoir, after dinner the family con- 
sisting of father, mother, Lipcap (an old man 
living with us), my brother Frank, three yenrs 
old, myself, nearly ten months old, and Paschal 
Menoir (visitor), were having an after dinner 
chat. Young Menoir was sitting in the open 
window on the west side of the house, facing 
the door. My father was sitting on a trunk 
against the wall, to the right of the window, 
and also facing the door. My mother had re- 
turned to the work of the day, family washing. 
My brother Frank was amusing himself. Lip- 
cap had gone to his work in the corn patch not 
very far from the house. I had creeped to my 
father's feet and lifted myself by his clothing, 
and was standing with my hands on his knees. 
At this moment four Indians, who had reached 
the door unnoticed, entered the room. Mother 
placed four chairs, and bade them be seated; 
they complied, the table being as left. Mother 
asked them to have dinner; they replied; "We 
are not hungry, but thirsty." She satisfied their 
wants, and watching them closely, she said to 
fatlier in French: "These Indians mean to do us 
some harm." Father made no reply. My father's 
gun was hanging in fastenings to a joist directly 
over h| three of the Indians had guns in 

their hands, the fourth, a chief, whose Indian 
name signified "Little Sun," was seated the 
nearest to my father, with his side toward him. 
This Indian had, unknown to the family, a 
shorter gun concealed under his blanket, and it 
was held in such a position as to bring my 
father in range. One of the other Indians left 
his chair, and took down my father's gun. 
Father instantly rose, seized and wrenched the 
gun from him, and stood it by the trunk, then 
both were seated again. My father spoke to 
mother, saying: "Come take this little girl." 
At this moment, at a signal from one of the 
other Indians, "Little Sun" fired his concealed 
gun, the bullet entering the right breast of my 
father, who had not changed his position. At 

almost the same instant another Indian shot his 
gun at Paschal Menoir, who was still sitting in 
the window, but missed him. Young Menoir, 
with great presence of mind, fell backward, 
through the window. He was undoubtedly sup- 
posed by the Indians to have been killed, and 
was not immediately looked after. He made 
his escape into the timber, which stood close up 
to that side of the house. 

The house was filled with powder smoke; my 
little brother was crying and calling for mother. 
Mother picked him up and ran out of the house. 
The Indians had preceded her, and leaped over 
the fence near the house. Mother, -with Frank, 
made her way over the fence, and dropped di- 
rectly in front of one of the Indians, who was 
crouching, unnoticed by her, on that side. Drop- 
ping the child, she seized his gun, and with un- 
natural strength, wrenched it away from him, 
and instantly cocked it, with the intention of 
killing him; some irresistible impulse compelled 
her at the moment of firing, to give an upward 
inclination, sufficient to carry the bullet over 
the Indian's head. She threw the gun after the 
Indians, who had started to kill Lipcap. My 
mother then returned to the house. I had 
creeped Under the bed. The house was par- 
tially cleared from smoke. Father was not 
dead, but could not speak or move, but made 
motions with his eyes, which she clearly under- 
stood as saying: "Make your escape." She then 
ran out, and through a picket fence, which di- 
vided their grounds from those of a man named 
Joseph Lambeire, who was eating his dinner in 
his cabin, which he occupied alone. He had 
heard the shots fired, but did not know their 

My mother who had not been to Prairie du 
Chien since they moved to the place, did not 
even know the way. She hurriedly told him 
what had occurred, and asked him to help her 
escape. Lambeire whose horse was tied to a 
fence near by, told her to bring the horse. She 
did so, when he mounted and rode cowardly 
and rapidly away, without a word to her, who 



then returned to the house. Fatlier, wlio still 
liveJ, agaiu with expressive look, plainly sig- 
naled "get away." Mother then with my little 
brother, made her way into the timber close to 
the house, into which Menoir had escaped. 
(All this occurred in a little time). While 
doing this, she discovered that Lipcap was 
being chased by the Indians, and making his 
way toward her, shouting, "wait for me." In 
her flight, she noticed a large soft maple tree, 
which had been blown down, and that the 
place where it had stood, was surrounded by a 
dense new growth of brush. She crept into 
this, and into the cavity made by uprooting the 
tree, placed Frank, and crouching low over 
him, remained almost breathless, until within 
twelve feet of her hiding place, the Indians 
overtook Lipcap and killed him with their 
knives, mutilating him and taking his scalp. 
My mother was not discovered. 

The Indians then returned to the house. 
Paschal Menoir, who from his jjlace of conceal- 
ment, had kept a close watch, noticing this, 
took the opportunity to make his way to the 
village. He reached exhausted, the house of 
Julian Lariviere; he there found Frank Dechu- 
quette, who mounted his horse and alatmed tlie 
people, who turned out to the rescue "ent)iasse" 

My mother in the meantime, alive to the 
necessity of making her escape, liad left licr 
hiding place, and unnoticed by tlie Indians, 
found fathers horse, and with Frank h;id 
mounted, and was searching for the road to the 
village, when she saw the people coming to the 
relief. The Indians after killing Lipcap, made 
their last return to the house. I had creeped 
from under the bed, to the door. Of khe brutal 
treatment of myself, "Little Sun," in his testi- 
mony given at the trial of himself and the chief, 
"Red Bird," for these murders said, "that he 
first gave the child a kick on the left hip, and 
then with his gun barrel in his hands, struck 
her with the breech of the gun on the riglit 
shoulder, and with his knife struck her across 
the back of the neck, intending to behead her, 

and carry the liea<l away with him," at this 
moment the other Indians outside of the house 
shouted, that "people are coming." He said, "I 
then took her scalp and with it part of the 
skull," he then scalped my father, down whose 
dying face, he said the tears were flowing, at 
witnessing the horrid butchery of myself. 

When the people from the village reached 
the house, my father was dead. The Indians 
were gone. I was lying in a pool of my own 
blood, and supposed to be dead. Julian, son of 
Julian Lariviere, wrapped me in his handker- 
chief, and carried me to his fathers house, 
where some hours later, when being washed 
preparatory to burial, I was first discovered to 
be alive, and by careful nursing and tender 
care, under kind Providence, was restored to 

The motives which actuated the Indians to 
commit these terrible murders, are not fully 
understood. The family believed that an in- 
dignity received by "Little Sun," at the hands 
of Rigiste Gagnier, was the immediate cause. 
The facts on which this belief is based, are told 
by Mrs. Cherrier, as follows: "In those years 
whenever a Catholic priest would visit Prairie 
du Chien, to celebrate mass, a procession 
would be formed by all of our Catholic people, 
and would march in line to the house devoted 
to the services of the day. Upon one of these 
occasions, among the lookers on was the 
Winnebago chief, "Little Sun" intentionally or 
otherwise. He was in the line of march, and 
as the head of the procession reached him, re- 
fused to move. Some confusion ensued. My 
father leaving his place in the line, advanced to 
the front, and seizing tlie chief, threw him one 
side with such force as caused him to fall to the 
ground. Arising with a murderous look and 
tone, "Little Sun" said, "you have thrown me 
down, but when I throw you down, you will 
never get up again." 

My first husband's name was Moreaux. He 
died in 1855. By that marriage, we had ten 



children, seven of whom are now living. I 
was married to Mr. Cherrier, March 1, 1862. 
We have had three children — Magdalene, born 
Dec. 6, 1863; Felix, born Oct. 7, 1865; and 
Louisa, born Feb. 29, 1868. The last named 
died in infancy. 

My mother married again in 1831. Her 
second husband's name was St. Germain. They 
had two children — David and Hattie. My 
mother died in 1836 with the small-pox. My 
st«p-father died in January, 1882. Pascal 
Menoir died in Prairie du Chien, in 1882. 





To the people of Crawford county the brief 
contest between a portion of the Sac and 
Fox Indians and the Americans, in 1832, known 
from the name of the leader of the savages as 
the Black Hawk War, promises more than 
usual interest, for the reason that, within the 
limits of the county, as then constituted, oc- 
curred one of the principal incidents of the war. 
In the outline history of Wisconsin, previously 
given, a brief sketch of the hostile movements of 
both parties engaged in the work of death, will 
be found ; but, at this point, it is proposed to 
enter more into detail. 

Black Hawk's return from the west side of 
the Mississippi, and his moving up Rock river, 
caused the mustering into the service of the 
United States, in Illinois, of about 800 volun- 
teers, who were sent in pursuit. Gen. II. At- 
kinson, brevet brigadier general in the United 
States Army, followed the militia with his reg- 
ulars, but at too great a distance to afford sup- 
port. On the 12th of May the volunteers 
reached Dixon's ferry, where they were joined 
by 275 men from the northern counties of the 
State. The latter force, however, were imme- 
diately sent out on scouting duty. But the two 
battalions still moved along together until 
Stillman's run was reached ; the creek then be- 
ing known as Kishwaukee, about thirty miles 
above the ferry. 


Black Hawk now made advances for peace, 
but two his messengers being killed, the ne- 
gotiations were broken off. That chief at this 

time had but forty men under his immediate 
command, most of his party being some ten 
miles away; nevertheless, with his handful of 
warriors, he started back to meet his pursuers. 
Raising the war-whoop, he rushed in upon the 
volunteers and scattened them in every direc- 
tion. The fugitives, in their flight, did not 
stop until the ferry was reached. This was 
afterward known as "the battle of Stillman's 
Run," of May U, 1832. The governor of Illi- 
nois issued a proclamation immediately after, 
calling foran additional force of 2,000 mounted 
volunteers. These incidents caused throughout 
the west the greatest alarm. The loss of the 
Indians in this, the first battle of the war, 
was none. Of the volunteers, one major, one 
captain and nine of the rank and file were 
killed, and five men wounded. 

On the 17th of May, Gen. Atkinson reached 
Dixon's ferry with his regulars and a supply of 
provisions ; and on the 19th, with 2,400 men, 
advanced up Rock river. On the 27th and 28th 
of the month, the volunteers were disbanded 
by the governor, leaving the defense of the 
frontiers in the hands «f the regular troops and 
a few citizens who had volunteered temporarily. 
Meanwhile the savages were waging war in 
earnest against the exp'^sed settlements. Their 
war parties were scattered from Chicago to 
Galena; from the Rock river to the lead mines. 
It was a warfare in regular Indian style ; there 
was success first on one side, then on the other; 
until on the 24th of June, Black Hawk made an 
unsuccessful attack on Apple River Fort, near 



the ])resent village of Elizabeth, 111. Mean- 
while the volunteers called out by the governor 
of Illinois were assembling and ordered to ren- 
dezvous at Dixon's ferry, where they were mus- 
tered into the service of the United States and 
formed into three brigades. The contest now 
began to assume somewhat the appearance of 
regular war. But, before we ])roeeed to nar- 
rate the aggressive movements of the Ameri- 
cans up the Rock river valley in pursuit of 
Black Hawk and his band, it is proper to more 
particularly describe the incident which oc- 
curred in various localities where the savages 
carried on their depredations previously. 

In the night of the I7th of June a volunteer 
company encamped near Burr Oak Grove, 
thirty-five miles east of Galena, was fired on by 
the enemy. The next morning they started in 
pursuit of the savages, and succeeded in killing 
all of them — four in number — with the loss on 
their part of only one man. However, later in 
the day they were attacked Vjy the Indians in 
considerable force, losing two killed and one 
wounded ; but they beat off the assailants and 
killed their leader. 


On the 14th of June a party of men were 
attacked in a cornfield near the mouth of Spof- 
ford's creek, and five killed. Two days after 
Col. Henry Dodge, with twenty-eight men, 
struck the trail of the savages, overtaking them 
on the bank of the Pecatonica in what is now 
Lafayette Co., Wis. The savages numbered 
seventeen, and all were killed. Dodge's loss 
was three killed. This was, all things consid- 
ered, the most spirited and effective fighting 
done during "the war." Capt. James W. Ste- 
phenson, at the head of the Galena volunteers, 
being on the lookout for Indians near the head 
of Yellow creek, lost three of liis men and was 
obliged to retreat. This ended what may be 
cdled the irregular lighting of the campaign. 
We now return to Rock river, up the valley of 

which Black Hawk and his force had moved 
and the Americans just commencing pursuit. 


A bittalion of spies was the first body or- 
dered forward. They reached Kellogg's grove, 
and were informed on the morning of the 25th 
of June that a heavy trail was to be seen of the 
enemy not far away. Twenty-five men went 
out to reconnoitre, and were defeated, leaving 
five killed and three wounded, though the 
enemy's loss is said to have been nine killed. 
The enemy now retired up the river in the di- 
rection of Lake Koshkonong, in Wisconsin ; 
and the fighting in Illinois was ended. The 
first halt made by Black Hawk was at what was 
afterward known as "Black Hawk Grove," just 
outside of the present city of Janesville, Rock 
Co., Wis., where his forces remained some time 
in camp. It must not be understood that they 
were now at their former homes. This was 
not the case. It was not then the country 
claimed by the Sacs, but by the Rock River 

Gen. Atkinson having arrived at the mouth 
of the Pecatonica, in pursuit of the savages, 
and hearing that the Sac chief was further up 
Rock river, determined to follow him with the 
intention of deciding the campaign by a general 
battle if possible. Black Hawk, judging of his 
intentions from the report of his spies, broke 
up his camp and retreated still further up the 
river, to the foot of Lake Koshkonong, where 
on the west side of the river, in what is now 
the town of Milton, he again formed a camp. 
Here he remained some time, when he again 
moved, this time to an island in tlie lake, still 
known as Black Hawk's island. It is in the 
southeast corner of the town of Sumner, in Jef- 
ferson Co., Wis. Black Hawk afterward made 
his way still further up the valley of Rock 

But now let us return to the army under 
Gen. Atkinson, in its march from the mouth of 
the Pecatonica to Lake Koshkonong, where he 
found the Sac chief had eluded him. The re- 



cital is best given in the words of one who was 
in the army at the time and marched under At- 

"The .30th of Juno, 1832, we passed through 
the Turtle village [now the city of Beloit, Rock 
Co., Wis.] which is a considerable Winnebago 
town, but it was deserted. We marched on 
about a mile and encamped on the open prairie 
near enough to Rock river to get water from it. 
We here saw very fresh signs of the Sac In- 
dians, where they had apparently been fishing 
on that day. Gen. Atkinson believed we were 
close to them and apprehended an attack that 
night. The sentinels tired several times, and 
we were as often paraded and prepared to receive 
the enemy, but they never came, though from 
the accounts given by the sentinels to the officers 
of the day, there was no doubt that Indians had 
been prowling about the camp. 

"July 1. — We had not marched but two or 
three miles before an Indian was seen across 
Rock river at some distance off, on a very high 
prairie, which, no doubt, was a spy, and likely 
was one that had been prowling about our en- 
campment the night before. We proceeded a 
few miles further, and came to the place where 
the Indians, who had taken the two Misses Hall 
prisoners, had staid for several days [near the 
site of the present city of Janesville]. It was a 
strong position where they could have with- 
stood a very powerful force. We afterward 
discovered they always encamped in such 
places. We had not marched but a few miles 
from this place before one of our front scouts 
came back meeting the army in great baste, and 
stated that they had discovered a fresh trail of 
Indians, where they had just gone along in front 
of us. Maj. Ewing, who was in front of the main 
army some distance, immediately formed his 
men in line of battle, and marched in that order 
in advance of the main army, about three- 
quarters of a mile. We-had a very thick wood 
to march through, where the under-growlh 
stood very high and thick; the signs looked 
very fresh and we expected every step to be 

fired upon from the thickets. We marched in 
this order about two miles, not stopping for 
the unevenness of the ground or anything else, 
but keeping in line of battle all the time, until 
we found the Indians had scattered; then we 
resumed our common line of march, which was 
in three divisions. Soon after we had formed 
into three divisions, the friendly Indians that 
were with us raised an alarm, by seven or eight 
of them shooting at a deer, some little in ad- 
vance of the army. The whole army here 
formed for action; but it was soon ascer- 
tained that these children of the forest had been 
at what their whole race seems born for, shoot- 
ing at the beasts of tiie woods. 

"We here encamped by a small lake [Storr's] 
this night, and had to drink the water, which 
was very bad, but it was all that could be found. 
Here a very bad accident happened. One of 
the sentinels, mistaking another that was on 
post, with a blanket wrapped around him, for 
an Indian, shot him just below the groin, in 
the thick of the thigh. At first the wound was 
thought mortal. I understood before I left the 
army that the man was nearly well. Here Gen. 
Atkinson had, on this night, breastworks thrown 
up, which was easily done, as we were encamped 
in thick, heavy timber. This was a precaution 
which went to show that he set a great deal by 
the lives of his men, and by no means was any 
mark of cowardice; for generalship consists 
more in good management than anything else. 

"July 2 — We started this morning at the 
usual time, but went only a few miles before 
Maj. Ewing, who was still in front with his 
battalion (of scouts), espied a very fresh trail, 
making off at about a left angle. He dispatched 
ten men from the battalion, in company with 
Capt. George Walker and a few Indians, to pur- 
sue it and see, if possible, where it went to. He 
moved on in front of his battalion a short dis- 
tance further, when he capie to the main Sac 
trail of Black Hawk's whole army, which ap- 
peared to be about two days old. 



"Capt. Early, who commanded a volunteer 
independent company, and had got in advance 
this morning, called a halt; so did Maj. Ewing 
with his battalion. Then Maj. Ewing sent hack 
one of his staff officers for the main army to call 
a hall for a few minutes. He, with Maj. Ander- 
son, of the infantry, Capt. Early and Jonathan 
H. Pugh, went a little in advance, when Maj. 
Anderson, with a telescope, took a view across 
the lake, as we had now got to Lake Kosliko- 
nong. [The army entered what is now Jeffer- 
son county, very nearly where, in going north, 
its south line is crossed by the Chicago <fc North- 
western Railway. The trail, after leaving the 
southeast quarter of section 35, in township 5 
north, of range 13 east, ran nearly due north to 
the southeast corner of section 26, in the same 
township and range, where the army reached 
the lake in what is now the town of Koshko- 
nong]. Tliey then discovered three Indians ap- 
parently in their canoes. 

'Maj. Ewing went himself and informed 
Gen. Atkinson what discovery was made, and 
requested Gen. Atkinson to let him take his 
battalion around through a narrow defile that 
was between two of those lakes, where we sup- 
posed the Indians were. I>y this time our scouts, 
who had taken the trail that led off on our left, 
returned, bringing with them five white men's 
st-alpa. They followed the Indian trail until it 
took them to a large Indian encampment that 
they had left a few days before. They reached 
it; tiie scalps were sticking against some of the 
wigwams; some of them were identified; but I 
do not recollect the names of any, except one, 
which was said to be an old gentleman by the 
name of Hall. 

"Maj. Ewing then marched his battalion 
about a mile, where the pass on the side of the 
lake appeared so narrow that he dismounted his 
men and had the horses all tied, and a few men 
left to guard them. The rest of us marched on 
foot about one mile through a narrow defile on 
the (oait) bank of the Koshkonong lake. This 
was considered a dangerous procedure, but Maj. 

Ewing, who was in front with Maj. Anderson, 
would have been first in danger. He now found 
that we were getting too far in advance of our 
horses; so Maj. Ewing seftt a ))art of the men 
back for them. ^Vhen we mounted our horses, 
we were joined by Capt. Early and bis inde- 
pendent corps. We then marched some distance 
around the (Koshkonong) lake and went in be- 
tween two of them, in ajiarrow defile until we 
found another deserted encampment. We now 
saw clearly ihat the Indians were gone from the 
Koshkonong lake; so, the next thing to be done 
was to find in which direction they had steered 
their course. 

"Gen. Atkinson having been re-enforced by 
Gen. Alexander, took up his line of march, ar- 
riving at the burnt village on the Gth of July. 
That evening. Gen. Posey's brigade, in compa- 
ny with Col. Dodge's squadron, joined Atkin- 
son. Col. John Ewing and his regiment came 
within a mile and a half of the main army and 
encamped. On the 10th, Gen. Atkinson sent 
Col. Ewing with his regiment down Rock river 
to Dixon's; Gen. Posey, with the rest of liis 
brigade, was diapatched to Fort Hamilton; 
while Col. Henry and his brigade, Gen. Alex- 
ander's brigade and Col. Dodge's squadron 
were sent to Fort Winnebago, now Portage, 
Columbia Co., Wis., for provisions. Atkinson 
dropped down a short distance from the burnt 
village and built a stockade fort, which he called 
Fort Koshkonong. It was located on the 
south side of Rock river in the eastern outskirts 
of the present village of Fort Atkinson, Jeffer- 
son Co., AVis. Alexander returned from Fort 
WiTinebago by the direct route, while Dodge 
and Henry took a more easterly one, striking 
Rock river at a point where there was a small 
Winnebago village, now Hustisfcrd, Dodge 
county,which point was reached July 18. Infor- 
mation was here obtained that Black Hawk was 
at Cranberry lake, farther up the river. This 
was believed to be reliable, and an express was 
started down the stream at once, to inform Gen. 
Atkinson of the Sac chief's whereabouts. The 



express came very unexpectedly, 'at a dis- 
tance not more than eight miles from the start- 
ing point, upon the trail of Black Hawk, mak- 
ing his way down thg river. The express re- 
turned to the army with the news, and the next 
morning, July 19, the pursuit began." 


In the march in j)ursuit of the enemy, the 
Americans crossed the Crawfish near what is 
now Aztalan, in Jefferson Co., Wis., and were 
of course soon in what is now Dane county. 
But the account of the march is best told by 
one who participated in the pursuit: 

"July 19, 1832.— This day we had for about 
twelve miles, the worst kind of a road. To 
look at it appeared impossible to march an army 
through it. Thickets and swamps of the worst 
kind we had to go through, but the men had 
something now to stimulate them. They saw 
the Sac trail fresh before them, and the pros- 
pect of bringing our campaign to an end. Tliere 
was no murmuring, no excuses were made, none 
getting on the sick report. If we came to a 
swamp that our horses were not able to carry 
us through, we dismounted, turned our horses 
before us and stepped in ourselves, sometimes 
up to our arm-pits in mud and water. In this 
way we marched with great celerity. In the 
evening of this day, it commenced thundering, 
lightning and raining tremendously. We 
stopped not, but pushed on. The trail appeared 
to be still getting fresher and the ground bet- 
ter, which still encouraged us to overcome every 
difficulty found in the way. It continned rain- 
ing until dark, and, indeed, until after dark. 
We now saw the want of ourtents, a great num- 
ber of us having left this necessary article be- 
hind in the morning, in order to favor our 

" The rain ceased before day, and it turned 
cold and chilly. In the morning we rose early, 
at the well-known sound of the bugle, and pi-e- 
pared in a very short time our rude breiikfast, 
dried our clothes a little, and by 7 o'clock, [July 
20th], were on the march at a quick pace. On 

this day some of our scouts took an Indian as a 
prisoner. On examination he \v:as found to be 
a Winnebago. He stated that Black Hawk was 
but a little distance ahead of us; and that he had 
seen some of his party not more than two miles 
ahead. But it was a bad piece of conduct on our 
part that this Indian was not kept as a prisoner 
of war, but was set at liberty and let go, no 
doubt, that he might inform the Sacs of our 

"We halted and the order of battle was formed 
as we expected we would overtake them 
this evening. The order was as follows: 
Gen. Dodge and Maj. Ewing were to bring on 
the battle. Maj. Ewing was placed in the cen- 
ter with his spy battalion, Capt. Gentry and 
Capt. Clark's companies on our right, and Capt. 
Camp and Capt. Parkinson on our left. Our 
own battalion [Maj. Ewing's] was reduced to 
two companies [as Capt. Wells and his com- 
pany had been left at Fort Dixon]; Capt. Lind- 
say, of our own battalion, was placed on the 
right and Capt. Huston's company on the left; 
Col. Fry and his regiment on the right, and Col. 
.fones, with his regiment, on the left, and Col. 
Collins in the center. In this order we marched 
in quick time, with all possible speed, in 
hope ti at we would overtake the enemy on that 
evening. We were close to the Four lakes (in 
what is now Dane Co., Wis.) and we wished to 
come up with them before they could reach 
that place, as it was known to be a stronghold 
for the Indians ; but the day was not long 
enough to accomplish this desirable object. 

"We reached the first of the Four lakes 
[now known as Lake Monona, or Third lake] 
about sun-down. Gen. Henry here called a halt 
and consulted with Pouquet [Peter Pauquette], 
our pilot, as to the country we were approaching. 
Pauquette, who was well acquainted with this 
country, told him he could not get through af- 
ter night ; that we had to niarcli close to the 
margin of the lake for some distance, as the 
underwood stood so thick one man could not 
see another ten steps. Gen. Henry concluded 



to encamp here until the break of day. Gen. 
Dodge sent Capt. Dixon on ahead with a few 
men to see if they could make any discovery of 
the enemy, who returned in a very short time 
and stated that they had seen the enemy's rear 
guard about one mile and a half distant. Gen 
Henry gave strict orders for every man to tie up 
his horrie, so as to be ready to start as soon as 
it was d.aylight. The order was strictly obeyed; 
and after we took our frugal supper all re- 
tired to rest except those who had to mount 
guard, for we had marched a great way that 
day, and many were still wet by the rain that 
fell the preceding night ; but being very much 
fatigued, we were all soon lost in sleep, except 
those on guard. 

".Tuly 21, at the break of day, the bugle 
sounded, and all were soon up and in a few 
miiuites had breakfast ready, and, after taking 
a little food, we mounted our horses and .again 
commenced the pursuit. We soon fomnd that 
the pilot liad told us no lie, for we found the 
country that the enemy was leading us into to 
be worse, if possible, than what he told us. 
We could turn neither to the rigiit nor left, but 
were compelled to follow the trail the Indians 
had made, and that, too, for a great distance at 
the edge of the water of the lake. VVe had not 
marched more than five miles before Dr. Pliil- 
leo came back, meeting us, with the scalp of an 
Indian. . He had been on ahead with the front 
sconts, and came on this Indian, who had been 
left as a rear guard to watch our movements. 
There were several shots fired at him about the 
same time, ami I suppose all hit him, from the 
number of bullet holes that were in him ; but 
Dr. Philleo had scalped him, so he was called 
Philli'o's Indian, which reminds me of the 
liunlers : 'lie who draws the first blood is en- 
titled to the skin, and the remainder to the car- 
cass, if there are several in the chase,' which 
was the case at this time." 

Leaving our journalist for a moment, we will 
describe tiie jiarticulars of the march from the 
time the Catfish creek, or rather the Yahara, as 

it is legally called, was reached until the army 
left the Fourth lake, the most northerly of the 
Four lakes, properly called Lake Mendota. In 
the timber skirting the Yahara, the Americans 
overtook the rear guard of the flying foe, where 
an Indian was wounded, who crept away and 
hid himself in the thick willows, where he died. 
A scouting party of fourteen men was sent for- 
ward and preceded the main body about two 
miles. When they arrived at the point now 
the site of Madison, the capital of Wisconsin, 
an Indian was seen coming up from the water's 
edge, who seated himself upon the bank, appar- 
ently indifferent to his fate. In a moment after 
his body was pierced with bullets, one of which 
passed in at the temple and out of the back 
part of his head. On examination it was found 
that he was sitting upon a newly made grave, 
probably that of his wife, who had perhaps died 
of fatigue, hunger and exhaustion, and her dis- 
consolate companion had resolved to await the 
advancing foe and die there also. The trail 
was followed around the southern end of Lake 
Jlendota (or Fourth lake), passing a little north 
of what is now the Capital Park, and along the 
lake r.cross the University grounds. A few 
miles brought them to what appeared an ad- 
mirable position for a battle field with natural 
defenses and places of ambush. It had been 
chosen by the enemy and here they' had lain 
apparently the previous night. This spot was 
afterward laid out as the city of Four Lakes. 
It is about three-fourths of a mile north of the 
present village of Pheasant Branch, in Dane 
county. We now return to the journal, from 
wiiich we broke off to relate these particulars. 

"But I am not done with Dr. Philleo yet. I 
will show you that he is a good soldier, and 
something of an Indian fighter. The signs now 
began to get very fresh, and we mended our 
pace very much. We had not proceeded more 
than ten or fifteen miles further before our 
fighting doctor ran afoul of two more Indians; 
he showed his bravery by assisting to kill them. 



I suppose he killed one and Sample Journey 
the other, so there was a scalp for each. 
But one of those miserable wretches sold his 
life as dear as possible. He, in the act of fall- 
ing, after he was shot, fired and shot three balls 
into a gentleman who himself was in tlie act of 
shooting at him. The balls were all small; one 
went through his thigh, one through his leg, 
and the other through his foot. I am sorry I 
liave forgotten tlie gentleman's name; he be- 
longed to Gen. Dodge's squadron. 

"We now doubled our speed, all were anx- 
ious to press forward, and a< our horses were 
nearly worn out, we carried nothing only what 
was actually necessary for us to eat; camp ket- 
tles and many such articles were thrown away. 
The trail was now literally, in many places, 
strewn with Indian trinkets, such as mats, ket- 
tles, etc., which plainly told us that they knew 
we were in pursuit. We, too, saw from the 
face of the country that we were drawing close 
to the Wisconsin river, and our object was to 
overtake them before they reached it; so now 
we went as fast as our horses were able to carry 
us. But this was too severe for our poor horses; 
they began to give out. But even this did not 
stop a man. Wheflever a horse gave out, the 
rider would dismount, throw off his saddle and 
bridle and jiursue on foot, in a run, without a 
muimur. I think the number of horses left 
this day was about forty. The rear guard of 
the enemy began by this time [about 3 o'clock 
p. SI.] to make feint stands; and as the timber 
stood thick, we did not know but what the 
whole army of Black Hawk was forming for 
action; in consequence of which we got down 
and formed as often as twice, before we found 
out that their object was to keep us back until 
tliey could gain some strong position to fight 
from. Our front scouts now determined not to 
be deceived any more: but the next they came 
to, they Slopped not for their feigned maneu- 
ver, but pursued them to the main body of the 
enemy. They returned to us in great haste and 

informed Gen. Henry that the Indians were 
forming for action. 


"We all dismounted in an instant. The line 
of battle was then formed in the same order 
that it had been laid off the preceding day, 
Gen. Dodge's corps and Maj. Ewing's spy bat- 
talion still in front. The horses were left and 
every fourth man detailed to hold them; which 
gave seven horses to each man to hold. We had 
scarcely time to form on foot before the Indians 
raised the war-whoop, screaming and yelling fu- 
riously, and rushed forward meeting us with a 
heavy charge. Gen. Dodge and Maj. Henry met 
them also with a heavy charge, which produced 
a halt on the part of the enemy. Our men tiien 
opened a tremendous volley of musketry upon 
them, and accompanied it with the most terrific 
yells that ever came from the head of mortals, 
except from the savages themselves. They 
could not stand this. They now tried their 
well known practice of flanking; but here they 
were headed again by the brave Col. Jones and 
his regiment, who were on our left, where he 
met them in the most fearless manner, and 
opened a heavy fire upon them. Col. Fry was 
placed on the extreme right. They tried his 
Hue, but were soon repulsed. Their strong 
position was on the left, or near the center, 
where Cols. Jones, Dodge and Ewing kept up 
a constant fire upon them for something like half 
an hour. 

"The enemy here had a strong position. They 
had taken shelter in some ver}' high grass, wliere 
they cou'd lie down and load and bo entirely 
out of sight. After fighting them in this posi- 
tion for at least thirty minutes, during which 
time Col. Jones had his horse shot from under 
him, and one of his me:i killed and several 
wounded, Cols. Dodge, Ewing and Jones all 
requested Gen. Henry to let them charge iijion 
them at the point of the bayonet, which Gen. 
Henry readily assented to, and gave the order 
"Charge!" which was obeyed by Ijoth men and 
officers in a most fearless manner. All were in- 



tent upon the charge. We had to charge up 
a rising piece of ground. When we got on the 
top, we then fired perfectly abreast. They could 
not stand tiiis They had to quit their liiding 
place and maile good their retreat. When they 
commenced retreating we killed a great number. 

"Their commander, who, it was said, was 
Napope, was on a white pony on the top of a 
mountain in the rear of his Indians; he certainly 
had one of the best voices for command I ever 
heard. He kept up a constant yell, until his 
men began to retreat, when he was heard no 
more. Col. Collins was kept, during the en- 
gagement, in the rear, as a reserve, and to keep 
the enemy from flanking and coming in upon 
us in the rear, which was a very good arrange- 
ment of Gen. Henry. It was now nearly 
sun-down, and still raining, as it had been all 
the evening, but so slow that we made shift 
to keep our guns dry. The enemy retreated 
toward the river with considerable speed. 
The ground they were retreating to, appeared to 
be low and swampy, and on the bank of the river 
there appeared to be a heavy body of timber, 
which the enemy could reach before we could 
bring them to another stand. So Gen. Henry 
concluded not to pursue them any further that 
night, but remain on the battle ground until 
next morning, and then he would not be in dan- 
ger of losing so many of his men, knowing 
that in the dark, he would have to lose a num- 
ber; for the Indians would have the timber to 
fight from while we would have to stand in liie 
open prairie. [The battle ground was on the 
east side of the northeast quarter of section 24, 
in what is now the town of Mazomanie, Dane 
Co., Wis.] 

"Next morning, July 22, the troops were pa- 
raded and put in battle order on foot, except 
(/ol. Fry's regiment, and took up the line of 
march to tlie river, leaving Col. Collins, regi- 
ment to guard the horses and baggage, and take 
care of the wounded. We marched dowti to 
the river, which was about one mile .nid m half 
off; but, before we reached the banks, wo liad a 

very bad swamp to go through, fifty or sixty 
yards on this side the timber, which stood very 
higli on the bank of the river. We now saw 
that Gen. Henry had acted very prudently. If 
he had attemi)ted to follow them the evening 
l)efi)re, he would have lost a great many of his 
men. When we got to the bank, we found they 
had made their retreat across the river during 
the night, leaving a great many articles of 
trumpery behind. We also saw a good deal of 
blood, where their wounded had bled. We now 
returned to the camp,seeiug there was no chance 
to follow them this day across th e river. 

"We, in this battle (known in histor}' as the 
Battle of Wisconsin Heights), were very fortu- 
nate indeed. We had only one man killed and 
eight wounded; and we have learned since the 
battle that we killed sixty-eight of the enemy 
(but Ulack Hawk declared afterward that he 
lost only six), and wounded a considerable num- 
ber, twenty-five of whom they report died soon 
after the battle. We were now nearly out of 
provisions, and to take up the line of march 
against them, in the condition our horses were 
in, told us plainly that we would suffer for 
something to eat before we could get it. We 
buried the brave young man, who was killed, 
with the honors of war. It was stated that he 
had just shot down an Indian when he received 
the mortal wound himself. His name was John 
Short, and he belonged to Capt. Briggs' com- 
pany from Randolph Co., III. He had a brother 
and a brother-in-law in the same company, who 
witnessed his consignment to the mother earth. 
The wounded were all well examined and none 
pronounced mortal. We continued tliis day on 
the battle ground and prepared litters for the 
wounded to be carried on. We spent this day 
in a more cheerful manner than we had done 
any other day since we had been on the cam- 
paign. We felt a little satisfaction for our toils, 
and thought we had, no doubt, destroyed a 
number of the very same monsters that had so 
lately been imbruing their hands with the blood 
of our fair sex, the hel|)less mother and un- 



ofifending infant. We dried our clothes, which 
then had been wet for several days. This day 
we spent in social chat between men and 
officers. There were no complaints made ; all 
had fought bravely; each man praised his officers, 
and all praised our general. Late in the even- 
ing, some of our men, who had been out to see 
if there were any signs of the enemy remaining 
near us, returned and stated that they saw 
smoke across the river." 

From this time until the Wisconsin river was 
crossed there were not many incidents of im- 
portance worthy of record; so we leave the 
journal, from which we have been copying, to 
relate only such events as will preserve the 
chain of our narrative until that time. On the 
2od of July the army was put in motion, not in 
pursuit of Black Hawk, but to go to the Blue 
Mounds for supplies of provisions. And just 
here we must go back in our relation to the 
time when the army left the Rock river, July 
19. On this day,- the same express that had 
discovered the trail of Black Hawk the day pre- 
vious, again started for Gen. Atkinson's camp, 
or Fort Koshkonong, where the general was 
with his infantry. That officer, as soon as he 
was informed that Black Hawk's trail was dis- 
covered, directed the same express to return at 
once to Gen. Henry with orders to the latter to 
pursue on the trail of the Sac chief until he 
could overtake him, and to defeat or capture 
him. However, before these orders had reach- 
ed Gen. Henry, they had been anticipated. 
Black Hawk had been pursued, overtaken and 
defeated, but not captured. Gen. Atkinson 
also notified Gen. Henry that he would start 
himself with the infantry and Gen. Alexander's 
brigade ; that the rest of the volunteers wlio 
were with him would be left to guard the fort ; 
and that he would go by way of Blue Mounds. 
He also directed Gen. Henry, if he got out of 
provisions, to go to that place for a supply. 
This explains why the army, after the battle of 
Wisconsin Heights, marched for the Blue 
Mounds. Not only Geu. Henry's command, 

but also those of Gen. Atkinson, reached the 
Blue Mounds without any mishap ; so, also, a 
part of Gen. Posey's brigade from Fort Hamil- 
ton, who passed on to Helena, in what is now 
Iowa Co., Wis., where the Wisconsin river was 
to be crossed by the whole army. By the 26th 
of June all the corainands had reached that 
place and preparations were made to cross the 
stream on rafts made for that purpose. 


On the 2lth and 28tli of July, Gen. Atkinson 
with his select body of troops, consisting of the 
regulars under Col. Taylor, 400 in number, part 
of Henry's, Posey's and Alexander's brigades, 
and Dodge's battalion of mounted volunteers, 
amounting in all to 1,300 men, crossed the 
Wisconsin river and immediately fell u])on the 
trail of the enemy. They were in what is now 
Sauk Co., Wis. Pursuing this trail first down 
the river, then to the northward, they finally 
struck off in a west-northwest direction through 
what is now Richland county, until the Kicka- 
poo river was reached near the present Soldier's 
Grove, in what is now Crawford county. 

Before entering upon the particulars of the 
march through Vernon county, as given in the 
journal from which extracts have already been 
so liberally made, it will be well to glance at 
the route taken from the Kickapoo to the Mis- 
sissippi. After the Kickapoo was crossed, Black 
Hawk, followed closely by Gen. Atkinson, 
was soon in what is now Vernon county, pass- 
ing, in a direction north of west, near the farm 
at present owned by Anson G. Tainter, in the 
town of Franklin; thence across West Prairie 
to the brakes or ravines leading into the head 
of Battle creek; thence down that creek through 
sections 2 and 3, in township 11, range "7, in the 
town of Wheatland, to the point where he was 
overtaken and compelled to fight the battle 
known in history as the battle of Bad Ax. 
Keeping this general description of the flight 
of the savages through Vernon county and the 
pursuit of them by the Americans in view, the 



following narrative will prove of interest to tlie 

"About 12 o'clock this day (August 1, 183l'), 
we came to a small river called the Kickapoo. 
We here found that the country was about to 
change. A short distance before we got to 
this stream, we came to a beautiful body of 
pine timber, which was tall and large. As 
soon as we crossed this stream, we found the 
mountains were covered with prairie grass. 
We here found the Indian trail was getting 
fresher. They had encamped at this creek. 
We had now been three days in those moun- 
tains and our horses had lived on weeds, except 
those that became debilitated and were left be- 
hind; for a gre;U number had become so, and 
were left to stai've in this dreary waste. We 
here for the first lime in three days had an op- 
portunity of lu ruing our horses out to graze. 
Accordingly we left them to^graze for about an 
hour, which they made good use of and during 
which we took a cold lunch. About 1 o'clock 
we started, at a faster gait than usual. We 
found from the face of the country tliatwew-ere 
not a great way from the Mississippi. 'J'he 
country was still hilly, but hills of a small size, 
and almost barren; so we could get along with 
more speed. It gave the men new spirits. We 
now saw that our horses would not have to 
starve, as we had begun to think it probable 
that tliey would. 

"On this evening, we came across the grave 
of an Indian chief, who was buried in the 
grandest style of Imlian burials; painted and 
otherwise decorated as well as those wretched 
beings were able to do. He was placed on the 
ground, with his head resting the root 
of a tree; logs were placed around him and 
covered over with bark; and on the top of 
wiiich, green bushes were laid; so intended 
that we might j)ass bj' without iliscovoring the 
gr.ive. He was exiniiriod a iid found to have 
been shot. It was now late in the evening, and 
we hid proceeded but a 8!u)rt distance from here, 
before some of our front spies came across an 

Indian that had been left behind from some 
cause or other. The spies interrogated him 
about Black Hawk and his band. He stated 
that they would get to the river that day and 
wou'd cross over on the next morning. The 
old sinner then plead for quarters; but that 
being no time to be plagued with the charge of 
prisoners, they had to leave the unhappy- 
wretch behind, which appeared to be a hard 
case. But, no doubt, he had been at the mas- 
sacre of a number of our own citizens, and 
deserved to die for the crimes which he had 
perpetrated in taking the lives of harmless and 
unoffending women and children. 

"We this day made a tolerable push, having 
marched until 8 o'clock at night before we 
stopped. We then halted and formed our en- 
campment. But it was for a short time only. 
Ocn. Atkinson gave orders for all to confine 
iheir horses and be ready to march by 2 o'clock 
in pursuit of the enemy. We were now all 
tired and hungry and something to eat was 
indispensibly necessary. We had a long way 
to go after water, and the worst kind of a preci- 
pice to go down and up to procure it. All 
was now a bustle for awhile, to prepare some- 
thing to sustain nature, and to do it in time to 
ofet a little rest before we would have to marcli. 
About 9 o'clock the noise began to die away, 
so that by 10 o'clock all were lost in sleep but 
the sentinel, who was at his post. 

"At the appointed hour [2 o'clock in the 
morning of August 2] the bugle sounded; all 
were soon up and made preparations for a march 
at quickstep, moving on to comjilcte the woik 
of death upon those unfortunate children of tlie 
forest. Gen. Atkinson tiiis morning had tlie 
army laid off and arranged in the following 
manner: Gen. Dodge, with Ms squadron, was 
placed in front, the infantry next, the second 
brigade next, under the command of Gen. Alex- 
ander; the first brigade next, under the com- 
mand of Gen. Posey; the thinl brigade next, 
under command of Gen. Ilenrv. 



"In this order the march had commenced. 
We had not proceeded more tlian four or five 
miles before there was a herald sent back, in- 
forming us that the front spies had come in 
sight of the enemy's rear guard [in reality their 
outpost]. The intelligence was soon conveyed 
to Gen. Atkinson, and then to all the command- 
ers of the different brigades. The celerity of 
the march was then doubled and it was but a 
short time before the firing of the front spies 
commenced, about half a mile in front of the 
main army. The Indians retreated towards the 
Mississippi, but kept up a retreating fire upon 
our front spies for some time, until Gen. Dodge, 
who commanded, began to kill them very fast. 
The Indians then retreated more rapidly and 
sought refuge in their main army, which was 
lying on the bank of the Mississippi [which river 
they had, in fact, reached the day before]." 


While Black Hawk and his band and their 
pursuers were traversing the rugged country 
across what is now Richland county into Ver- 
non, intelligence was conveyed to Prairie du 
Chien, by express, of the battle of Wisconsin 
Heights and of the retreat of the enemy across 
thp Wisconsin river. The commander of the 
American forces at Prairie du Chien at once 
came to the conclusion that the savages would 
soon reach the Mississippi, and by crossing that 
stream escape the army in pursuit of them; so 
he engaged a steamboat, placed some regulars 
upon it and a six-pounder, with orders to cruise 
up and 'down the Mississippi to cut off the 
retreat of the Sac chief and his people. The 
steamer proving to be a slow one was with- 
drawn and a faster one armed in its place — the 

On the 1st of August, the Warrior discovered 
the Indians on the bank of the Mississippi 
where they had just arrived, not far below the 
mouth of the Bad Ax, making preparations to 
cross to the west side. A flag raised by Black 
Hawk was not respected by the Warrior, but a 
fire was opened from the boat upon the Indians 

with not only the small arms of the regulars 
but the six-pounder. The fire was returned by 
Black Hawk's party. The contest was kept up 
until the steamboat was compelled to drop 
down the river to Prairie du Chien for fuel. 
The loss of the enemy was twenty-three killed. 
On board the War7-ior none were killed and 
but one wounded. But the presence of the 
steamboat and the firing of course wholly in- 
terrupted the preparations of the savages to 
cross the river, while Atkinson and his army 
were marching rapidly ujjon their rear. 

It was the next morning, as we have already 
seen, that the Americans under Gen. Atkinson 
came in sight of what was supposed by them to 
be the rear guard of the Indians, but which 
was, in reality, one of their outposts. It ap- 
pears that the savages raised a white flag for 
the purpose of surrendering, which was either 
not seen or was not regarded, and the firing on 
both sides soon became spirited, the Indians re- 
tiring slowly to their main force on the bottom 
of the river, where the latter were busily em- 
ployed transporting their women and children 
and the aged and infirm across the Mississippi 
[the Warrior not having returned to again cut 
off their retreat]. 

Let us now return to the American army in 
keen pursuit of the fugitives. It will be remem- 
bered that Gen. Henry had early in the morning 
been put in the rear, btit he did not remain 
there long. Maj. Ewing, who commanded the 
spy battalion,sent his adjutant back to the gen- 
eral informing him that he was on the main 
trail; he at the same time formed his men in 
order of battle and awaited the arrival of the 
brigade which marched up in quick time. 
When they came up, Gen. Henry had his men 
formed as soon as possible for action; he placed 
Col. Jones and Maj. Ewing in front. Gen. At- 
kinson called for a regiment from Gen. Henry's 
brigade to cover his rear. Col. Collins formed 
on the right of Col. Jones and Maj. Ewing, 
when all were dismounted and marched on foot 
in the main trail, down the bluff into the bot- 



torn. Soon the fire was opened on the main 
force of the enemy, at which time Gen.' Henry 
sent back an officer to bring up Col. Fry with 
his regiment. Col; Collins was by this time in 
the heat of the action with his regiment. Capt. 
Gentry, from Gen. Dodge's corps, was by this 
time also up, and opened a heavy fire. He fell 
into the lines of Col. Jones and Maj. Ewing. 
Capts. Gruer and Richardson, from Gen. Alex- 
ander's brigade, with their companies and a few 
scattering gentlemen from Gen. Dodge's corps, 
were also up; who all joined Gen. Henry and 
fought bravely. Col. Fry obeyed the call of his 
general and was soon where the conflict raged 
with his regiment. By this time the savages 
were falling rapidly. 

It was about half an hour after the battle 
commenced before Col. Zaehary Taylor with 
his infantry and (4en. Dodge with his scpiadron 
got 071 the ground and joined in the battle. 
They had been thrown on the extreme right, by 
following the enemy's rear guard as was su| - 
posed, but which was, as already explained, 
their retreating out])ost. Gens. Posey aiid 
Alexander had been stationed up the river on 
the extreme right, in order to prevent the In- 
dians from making their escape in that direc- 
tion, so they did not participate in the slaughter 
of the savages. The victory, of course, with 
such overpo'vering numbers, was complete; but 
those of the Indians who escaped death from 
the Americans had most of them made good 
their retreat to one of the islands in the river, 
when, at an ii]i])orlun<' moment for the attack- 
ing parties the ICi'/n-/'/;' ajipeared in the river 
and opened fire upon the fugitives with her 
cannon, at the same time sending her two boats 
to the shore to transport troops to the island 
also, to attack the now distressed savages. Col. 
Taylor sent a detachment in the boats and the 
Indians were soon all killed on the island but 
one. There were of Black Hawk's entire force, 
besides a few who had succeeded in reaching 
the west side of the Missis-ipj^i, only himself 
and ten warriors with thirty-live women and 

children who made their escape. About 150 
were killed. The loss of the Americans was 
twenty-seven killed and wounded. Such was 
the liattle of Bad Ax. Black Hawk was soon 
brought in a prisoner by the Winnebagoes, and 
the war was ended. 

official report of the battle. 

Headquarters, 1st Army Corps, 
Northwestern Army, Prairie du Chien, 
Augusts, 1832. 

"Sir: — I have the honor to report to you that 
I crossed the Wisconsin on the 27th and 2^th 
ult., with a select body of troops, consisting of 
regulars under Col. (Zaehary) Taylor, 400 in 
number; part of Henry Posey's and Alexan- 
der's brigades; and Dodge's battalion of 
mounted volunteers; amounting in all to 1,.300 
men; and immediately fell upon the trail of the 
enemy aTid pursued it by forced marches 
through a mountainous and difficult country, 
till the morning of the 2d instant, when he 
came up with his main body on the left bank of 
the .Mississipjii, nearly opposite the mouth of 
the luwa, which we attacked, defeated and dis- 
persed with a loss on his part of about 150 men 
killed and thirty-nine «omen and children piis- 
oners. The precise number of the killed could 
not be ascertained, as the greater portion were 
slain after being forced into the river. Our 
loss in killed and wounded, which is stated be- 
low, is very small in comparison with the lo.vs 
of the enemy, which may be attributed to the 
enemy's being forced from his positions by a 
rapid charge at the commencement, and through 
the engagement. The remnant of the enemy, 
cut up and disheartened, crossed to theop|)osite 
side of the river, and has fled into the interior, 
with a view, it is supposed, of joining Keokuk 
and Wappilo's bands of Sacs and Foxes. 

"The horses of the volunteer troo|)s being 
exhausted bj' long marches, and the regular 
troops without shoes, it was not thought advisa- 
ble to continue the pursuit. Indeed a stop to 
the further effusion of Idood seemed to be 



called for, until it might be ascertained if the 
enemy would not surrender. 

"It is ascertained from our prisonei's, that the 
the enemy lost in the battle of the Ouisconsin 
[Wisconsin Heights], sixty-eight killed, and a 
very large number wounded. His whole loss 
does not fall short of 300. After the battle of 
the Ouisconsin, the enemy's women and chil- 
dren, and some who were dismounted, attempted 
to»make their escape by descending that river, 
but judicious measures being taken here by 
Capt. Loomis and Gen. Street, an Indian agent, 
thirty-two women and children, and four men 
have been captured, and some fifteen killed by 
the detachment under Lieut. Ritner. 

"The day after the battle on this river I fell 
down with the regular troops to this place by 
water, and the mounted men will join us to-day. 
It is now my purpose to direct Keokuk to de- 
mand the surrender of the remaining principal 
men of the hostile party ; which, from the large 
number of women and children we hold as 
prisoners, I have every reason to believe will 
be complied with. Should it not, they should 
be pursued and subdued ; a step Maj. Gen. 
Scott will no doubt take on his arrival. 

"I cannot speak too highly of the conduct of 
the regular and volunteer forces engaged in the 
last battle [Bad Ax], and the fatiguing march 
that preceded it. 

" As soon as the reports of the ofiicers of 
brigades and corps are handed in, they shall 
be submitted with further remarks. 

I have the honor to be, with great respect, 
your obedient servant, 

H. Atkinson, 
B't. Brig. Gen U. S. A. 

Maj. Gbn. Macomb, 

Commander-in-Chief, Washington City. 


In May, 1831, Joseph M. Street, Indian agent 
at Prairie du Chien, left the agency in care 
of sub-agent, Thomas P. Burnett. The latter 
reported to Gen. William Clark, superintendent 

of Indian affairs, at St. Louis, on the 18th of 
that month, that "the Indian relations among 
the different tribes of this quarter, have not a 
very amicable appearance. , The threatenings 
of the Sauks and Foxes, and occasional acts of 
mischief committed by them against the whites 
in the vicinity of Rock Island, have doubtless 
been communicated to you before this time. 

"The Sioux chief, Wabashaw, and a consid- 
erable number of his tribe, are now here [at 
Prairie du Chien]. A small party of them who 
came across the country from Red Cedar, state 
that within their country north of the line of_ 
the purchase of last summer, they came upon a 
war road of the Sauks and Foxes. They fol- 
lowed the trail leading out of the country sev- 
eral days, and from the signs remaining at their 
camps, they have no doubt, that three or more 
of the Sioux have been murdered by the Sauks 
and Foxes! Among other appearances that 
confirmed them in this belief, was a painted buf- 
falo robe, such as no Indians in this quarter but 
the Sioux make or use, cut in pieces at one of 
their camps. They pursued their trail until 
they came upon their camp, a few miles north 
of the old Red Cedar fort ; but finding them 
double their own number, did not make an at- 
tack. They say that they have made peace 
and promised to keep it, and will not in any 
case be the aggressors. 

"Col. Morgan informed me, two days since, 
that he had sent down to the Sauks and Foxes 
to send up ten or twelve of their men to see 
him, and have a talk with him. They were ex- 
pected here on yesterday, but have not yet ar- 
rived. The Sioux are waiting their arrival, and 
are, I believe, ready to meet them, either as 
friends or enemies. When they were informed 
that the Foxes were coming, they put their arms 
in order. They say that if the Sauks and Foxes 
come and deport themselves peaceably, they 
will not molest them, but if they see any hostile 
manifestations, they will strike them. My own 
opinion is that if the Sauks and Foxes have had 
a war party out against the Sioux, they will not 



come here upon Col. Morgan's invitation, know- 
ing as they do, tliat the Sioux always visit this 
place about this season in considerable num- 

"A part of the Menomonees have been to see 
me since Gen. Street's departure. They re- 
newed their promise not to go against the Chip- 
pewas for the present, but to wait a while longer 
to hear from their Great Father. 

"The squally appearance of Indian affairs 
called for the watchful attention alike of agents 
and officers of the army. But it became a ques- 
tion of etiquette, which should take the lead in 
the matter. Tlie military seems to have claimed 
that right, while the agents claimed at least to 
know what had been done in the premises, both 
being then under the superintendence of the 
war department, the military considered the 
Indian department [as subordinate to theirs. 
Hut Mr. Burnett thought otherwise, claiming 
that each branch of the public service had its 
appropriate duties with which the other should 
not interfere, while in case of necessity one 
.should assist tlie other, both acting in unison. 
And as the Sauks and Foxes alluded to in his 
letter to Gen. Clark, did come to the place, with 
whom Col. Morgan held a council, without the 
knowledge or co-operation of the agent, Mr. 
Burnett claimed to be informed of the nature 
and extent of the proceedings, and addressed a 
note dated May 23, 1831, to Col. Morgan, as 

"Sir:-I was informed yesterday that you held, 
on the morning of that day, a council with a 
party of Sioux and a party of Fox Indians which 
you had assembled in the village of Prairie du 
Chien. As the acting Indian agent at this place, 
it properly concerns me to know what takes 
place at this post in relation to Indian affairs. 
I should therefore be glad to be informed of 
the circumstances that required such council. 
The objects to be effected and the results accom- 
plished; also the names of the chiefs or men 
of influence of either tribe, who were present. 
Will you please to communicate to me as early 

as may be convenient, the desired informa 
tion, and likewise whether Gen. Street was ap- 
prised previous to his departure, of the contem- 
plated meeting of those Indians." 

This brought from Col. Morgan the following 
tart reply, and raised the question of preroga- 

"Sir — I acknowledge in you no right to call 
on me to render an account of my proceedings 
to you, though if you will do me the favor to 
call at my quarters on my return from St. Peter's, 
for which place I am just about to set 
out. I will explain to you the object of the 
council and tell you what passed. You were 
apprised yourself of the Foxes having been in- 
vited and you knew they had arrived. Why 
stay four or live miles off? I stated to the In- 
dians that you should have been to the council 
if you had been there." 

Mr. Burnett informed Gen. Clark of the 
transaction of Col. Morgan, May 28, 1831: "In 
my letter of the 18th inst., I informed you that 
Col. Morgan had sent for the Sauks and Foxes 
to visit this post. On the 21st inst., about 
fifteen men of the Foxes, of Dubuque mines, 
arrived at the village, and on the next day Col. 
Morgan held a council with them and the Sioux, 
who were here. I presume that whatever took 
place at the council, or was affected by the 
meeting of the Indians, of any importance, will 
be communicated to you through the proper 
channel, by Col. Morgan who acted alone in the 

"The Sioux had been waiting the arrival of 
the Foxes for several days. The Foxes landed 
at the village on Saturday evening, not later I 
think than 4 o'clock. The council was opened 
the next morning, as I am informed, at 10 
o'clock; yet no intimation of either time or 
place of meeting, or that my presence was at all 
desired, was given, although there was ample 
time to do so. Throughout the transaction, 
there has been no consultation had, or co-opera- 
tion had with the agency. The only communi- 
cation upon the subject previous to the council 



and clei)avtiire of thy luJians, was the simple 
fact that he had sent for the F. xes, of which I 
apprised you. I suppose that if anything oc- 
curred of sufficient importance to found a re- 
port upon, he will communicate the facts, and 
in tliat case, it must appear that the measure 
was undertaken and carried through without 
any connection or co-operation with thisagenc}". 
I have, therefore, given the above statement of 
facts to show that the absence of cooperation 
in this affair was not from neglect of duty or 
inattention on the part of this agency." 

'J'he information that I have collected on 
the subject, is this: "Some fifteen Foxes from 
Dubuque mines, all young men except one or 
two, came up and had a talk with the Sioux and 
Col. Morgan, in which each expressed a desire 
to continue the j>eace which had been concluded 
between them the last year. The Foxes denied 
any knowledge of a war party having gone 
against the Sioux. They said they wished to 
be at peace, and would not do any act of hos- 
tility, but they could not answer for those be 
low — they spoke for themselves only. They 
smoked and danced together and parted in ap- 
parent friendship and harmony. 

"The extent of the frontier and the number 
of tribes within the agency kept up an almost 
incessant excitement as to their affairs, and to 
keep the government advised of all their move- 
ments, required constant vigilance and the writ- 
ing of numerous letters. Under date of Jiiik* 
13, 1831, Mr. Burnett writes to Gen. Clark: 'I 
have received since the last mail from this 
place information which 1 consider entitled to 
credit, that a war party of Sioux is now heing 
organized among Washaba's band to go against 
the Chippewas, by a warrior of some note in 
that band. I have also understood that there 
are a few Menomonees, relatives of those who 
were killed by the Chippewas in the fall and 
winter past, now with the band of Sioux. Hut 
I have not been able to learn whether they in- 
tend joining the Sioux in their expedition or 

not, but think it probable that some of them 
will do so.' 

"Under date of .Tune 29th he wrote: 'I am 
informed by Maj. Langham, who arrived here 
from below a few days since, that the VVinne- 
bagoes of the Prophet's village on Rock river, 
have united with the Sauks and Foxes. Tiie 
Winnebagoes of the Wfsconsin and Upper Mis- 
sissippi are still peaceable. They are most 
likely waiting to see the first results of the 
movements below, and intend to act afterwards 
according to circumstances. 

"Until within two or three weeks past, very 
few of those Indians have visited this place for 
a length of time, fewer, I am told, than usual 
at this season of the year. Lately a great many 
of them have been here, the most pf whom 
came down the Wisconsin and have gone up 
the Mississippi. A great portion of them are 
old men, women and children. They continue 
to pass by daily. Many rumors are in circula- 
tion as to their present disposition and inten- 
tion; very few of which are, perhaps, entitled 
to implicit belief. 'I hey have served, however, 
to give considerable alarm to many of the in- 
habitants of the prairie, and many of them be- 
gin to think themselves in ilanger. 1 have 
spare<l no pains to ascertain the disposition of 
the ^N'innebagoes here and have found no evi- 
dence of a disposition to hostilities on their 
part, unless their sending so many of their old 
men, women and children up the river and pur- 
chasing powder in larger quantities than usual 
for ordinary hunting, should indicate something 
of the kind. 

"I also learned a few days since that the one- 
eyed Decori had left his village at Prairie La 
Crosse and gone down to the Sauks and Foxes. 
This was accidentally communicated to my in- 
formant by a Winnebago and is probably true. 
Decori was down about two weeks since and 
called to see me on his return home. His de- 
portment was as usual; I saw no change. In 
fact, I have not discovered any change in the 
deportment or appearance of any of them that 



I have seen. They all appear to be perfectly 
friendly. None of the traders here think they 
have any hostile intentions. 

"Col. Morgan left the fort for Rock Island on 
the morning of the 27th inst., with two compa- 
nies from his post, and two more from Fort 
Winnebago, under Maj. Twiggs. He had pre- 
viously called in all fatigue parties and put his 
whole force under a course of training. Much 
alarm prevails in the mines. The people are 
arming and preparing for their defense. I do 
not consider that there is any immediate dan- 
ger either here or in t'ais vicinity. Much, how- 
ever, will doubtless depend on the result below. 
The Sioux and Menomonees are certainly 
friendly, and against the Sauks and Foxes, 
would willingly unite with the whites if per- 
mitted to do so. I have heard nothing since 
my last of a war party of those Indians against 
tile Chippewas. 

"In February, 18:52, Mr. Burnett was in Ken- 
tucky, when Gen. Street wrote him that 'the 
Menomonees and Sioux are preparing for a re- 
talitory war against the Sauks and Foxes in 
the s])ring. 'I'lie Menomonees have made peace 
with the Chippewas, in order to have no fears 
from that quarter. The two tribes met above 
the mill on the Chippewa and made their peace. 
I have advised the superintendent so as to have 
the earliest interference, if any is intended. 
Tlie Sauks and Foxes, I learn, expect retaliation 
and will be prepared to meet them. If the 
government is not early in stopping them, they 
will certainly go in considerable force, and a 
bloody contest may be expected." 

About the 1st of April Mr. Burnett received 
instructions, while yet in Shelbyville, to "pro- 
coed to the agency at Prairie du Chieti, by way 
of St. Louis, and call on Gen. Clark for the 
funds allotted to the agency for 1832, or such 
portion thereof as he shall determine to forward. 
The receipts will be forwarded to you at St. 
Louis as soon as a conveyance by steamboat 
shall occur." Mr. Burnett reached the agency 
about the 1st of May. At that time the Sauks 

and Foxes under Black Hawk were in hostile 
movements on Rock river, with Gen. Atkinson 
in pursuit. To aid in the defense of the country, 
Gen. Atkinson, from Dixon's ferry. May 26, 
1832, addressed Gen. Street as follows: 

"Sir:— I have to request that you send me at 
this place, with as little delay as possible, as 
many Menomonee and Sioux Indians as can be 
collected, within striking distance of Prairie du 
Chien. I want to employ them in conjunction 
with the troops against the Sauks and Foxes, 
who are now some fifty miles above us in a 
state of war against the whites. I understand 
the Menomonees, to the number of 300 warriors, 
who were with you a few days ago, are anxious 
to take part with us. Do encourage them to do 
so, and promise them rations, blankets, pay, etc. 
I have written to Capt. Loomis to furnish them 
some arms, if they can be spared, and ammuni- 
tion. If there are none at Prairie du Chien, I 
must procure some in this quarter. Col. Ham- 
ilton, who has volunteered his services to lead 
the Indians to this place, will hand you this let- 
ter; and if the Indians can be prevailed on to 
come, will perform the duty. I have to desire 
that Mr. Marsh may be sent with Col. Hamilton 
and the Indians, and an interpreter of the Me- 
nomonee language." In accordance with this 
requirement. Gen. Street gave, on May 30, to 
Mr. Burnett the following instructions: 

"Sir: — You will please proceed with John 
Marsh, who goes express to the nearest 
Sioux village, and render him such aid as may 
be necessary in obtaining as many Indians as 
possible, to come down with you, and proceed 
under the command of Mr. Marsh to join Gen. 
Atkinson. The letter of Gen. Atkinson will be 
your guide in the business. Use every means 
to expedite the object; and hasten your return, 
as much depends upon the expedition." 

The nearest Sioux village was 130 miles up the 
river from the seat of the agency, which had to 
be ascended in canoes, there being no steamer 
then to be had. Yet in six days after receiving 



llii- order, .Mr. Burnett made the following re- 
port to Gen. Street: 

"Sir: — In obedience to your order of the 
30th ult., I set out immediately from this place, 
in company with Mr. Marsh, in a canoe, with 
eight hands, to visit tlie nearest village of the 
Sioux Indians. From recent indications among 
the Winuebagoes of the upper Mississippi of a 
disposition to engage in hostilities with the 
Sauks and Foxes, Mr. Marsh and myself thought 
best to call at their village on the river La 
Crosse, and invite so many as might be disposed 
to join us on our return, and go witli the Sioux 
and Menomonees to join Gen. Atkinson's army 
on Rock river. We arrived at the Winnebago 
village on the evening of the next day after 
leaving this post, and that night liad a talk 
with the chiefs and braves upon tiie subject. 
Win-o-a-she-kan was opposed to the measure, 
and declined having anything to do with it. He 
said the Sauks had twice, this season, presented 
the red wampum to the Winnebagoes at Port- 
age, and that they had as often washed it white, 
and handed it back to them; that he did not 
like that red thing, he was afraid of it. Waudgh- 
ha-ta-kan took the wampum, and said that he, 
with all the young men of the viUage, would go; 
that they were anxious to engage in the expe- 
dition, and would be ready to accompany us on 
our return. 

" The next day we reached Prairie Aux Ailes 
[Wabasha], and found the Sioux extensively 
anxious and ready to go against the Sauks and 
Foxes. They were intending to make a de- 
scent upon them in a few days, if they had imt 
l)een sent for. They engaged with alaciity in 
their preparations, but we found it necessary to 
wait till Monday morning to give them time. 
We left their village on our return, at 9 o'clock 
in the forenoon, accompanied by the whole ef- 
fective force of the band, and at La Crosse were 
joined by twenty warriors of the Winnebagoes, 
the remainder of their village to follow the 
next day, and reached this place to-day, at 2 
o'clock p. M., with 100 warriors, eighty of whom 

are Sioux, and tucni \, Winnebagoes. I tUiidc, 
from the disp.jsitio?i manifested by the Winue- 
bagoes, that fifty or sixty more of them will be 
here before the expedition leaves the prairie, 
making a force of 130 or 140. The Indians 
with whom I have met appear well effected 
towards the whites, are in tine spirits and seem 
anxious to engage with the Sauks and Foxes. 

" I made the promise authorized to the In- 
dians of subsistence, pay, etc., and told them 
that their families should be supplied with pro- 
visions during their absence from home. The 
most of the families of the warriors have accom- 
panied them thus far to take a supply of pro- 
visions home with them, when the expedition 
shall have left this place. It is due to Mr. 
Marsh to say that he has displayed great zeal 
and energy in effecting the object of our visit, 
and that his exertions had the effect of bring- 
ing out the greatest possible force from the 
bands we have called upon." 

Mr. Burnett greatly desired and strongly 
urged Gen. Street to allow him to accompany 
these Indians and take part in the war. But 
the general thought his services were needed 
at and near the agency, and, therefore, declined 
to comply with the request. 

In the meantime the Sauks and Foxes re- 
treated from the Rock river to the Wisconsin, 
where they were routed, "horse, foot and 
dragoons." The news of this defeat of the In- 
dians soon reached Prairie duChien, and it was 
thought probable that if the Sauks and Foxes 
could get canoes, or even rafts, that they would 
attempt to escape from their pursuers by de- 
scending the Wisconsin river. To prevent this, 
some volunteer troops were stationed on that 
river at the ferry, now Barrett's. But the In- 
dians took across the country towards Bad Ax. 


As soon as it was ascertained that the hostile 
Indians under lilack Hawk were weTiding their 
way to the Mississippi, after the battle of Wis- 
consin Heights, Joseph M. Street, Indian agent, 
wrote to Thomas P. Burnett, sub-Indian agent, 



with a view to adopt means to intercept the 
savages, the following letter, on the 25th of 
July, 1832 : 

"Sir: — You will proceed up the Mississippi to 
the Winnebagoes, twenty-iive or thirty miles 
above this place, and inform tiiera * * * of 
the crossing of the Sauks to the north side of 
the Wisconsin, and that their chiefs, Carraraana 
and Decori are here, and that I want all of the 
Winnebagoes to come down with you immedi- 
ately ; tell them it is the wish of their chiefs 
also. One object of this is, to get them out of 
the way with their canoes, to prevent their 
crossing the Sauks over the river. Send on 
word, if you can, to the u]iper villages, that the 
Sauks have been defeated, and have crossed the 
Wisconsin. And should the Winnebagoes hesi- 
tate, tell them if they do not come, I will not 
pay the annuity to any who refuse. The time 
is now near and they will lose their money. 
Hasten back as soon as possible." 

The next day, July 26, Mr. Burnett reported: 
"Sir : — In obedience to your order of yesterday, 
I set out from this ])lace in a bark canoe late 
last evening to visit the \V^innebagoes, supposed 
to be encamped twenty-five or thirty miles 
above Praii'ie du C'hicii. This morning before 
day the steamlioat Enter ih-iae, with a military 
command, came by my encampment and took 
myself and crew on board. Before arriving at 
the place where the Indians had been encamped, 
we found tliat they had been gone for several 
days, and had removed some distance above. 

"We tlierefore continued on up a considerable 
distance, j)assing several lodges at different 
])oinls until we came to the princijjal camp, on 
the east side of tiie river, supposed to be sixty 
miles above I'rairie du t'iiien. I communicated 
your message to all the Indians I saw on the 
w ly, who readily promised to ol>ey your iii- 

"At the principal cam]) I found ^Vasi)ington 
Decori with a considerable part of the tribe 
from the Wisconsin and Kickapoo river. I 
ininicdiately informed them of your request, and 

desired tliem to get ready as soon as possible 
and go to the agency. They manifested entire 
willingness to do so, but said some of their 
party were out hunting, and would be in at 
night, for wliom they wislied to wait, so that 
all might come together. They promised very 
positively, that they would start as soon as the 
hunters shoidd arrive, and would certainly see 
you by the middle of the afternoon tomorrow. 
After some conversation about their starting 
this evening, and their still objecting to do so 
until the hunters came in, Lieut. Abercrombie 
told them that he would wait until sunset for 
them to get ready, and if they did not start by 
that time, he would take all their cauoes and 
bring them down witli tlie steamboat. About 
two hours after this they concluded to start 
and let the hunters come on after them; and 
after seeing all the canoes move off, we started 
on our return, and reached this place at 9 
o'clock this evening. The Indians whom 1 saw 
will be here to-morrow by 12 o'clock. They 
had not heard of the battle on the Wisconsin, 
but appeared to be highly gratified and pleased 
at the news." 

The next day, July 27, Gen. Street ordered 
Mr. Burnett to "proceed with Washington De- 
cori to La Crosse, and such other points as you 
may deem important, and tell liic Winnebagoes 
I wish to see them at the agency. I wish Win- 
neshiek certainly to come. Much must be left 
to your own judgment in the case. The object 
is to get what information you can relative to 
the Sauks and Foxes, and to draw all the Win- 
nebagoes from the Upper Mississi])pi, and with 
them the means of passing the river. If you 
can, cxtt'nd tiie news to the Sioux." 

The following day Mr. Burnett reported to 
Gen. Street: "In obedience to your order of 
yesterday, I went on l)oard the steamer Knler- 
prise last evening, and started for La Crosse. 
We arrived early this morning at the entrance 
of the lower mouth of Black river and found 
the Winnebagoes encamped on the shore. I 
took Wekon Decori, and went on shore immedi- 



ately to see the Indians. I found the one-eyed 
Decori, and the Little Thuiidev at the lodges, 
but found that most of the band had left the 
village sometime since. Winneshiek :ind Wau- 
marnarsar, with about fifteen men and their 
families, had been gone near a month to hunt 
and dry meat about fifty miles up La Crosse and 
Black rivers. The rest of the band were in the 
camp. I told them that you wished to see 
them immediately; that the Americans under 
Gen Dodge had defeated the Sauks and Foxes 
on the Wisconsin, and after killing a groat 
many, had driven them across the rivei-; that 
the defeated Indians were endeavoring to 
make their escape to the 31issi»sippi for the 
purpose of crossing it and regaining their own 
country; and that it was probable they wouM 
attempt to reach that point, that they might 
get the Winnebago canoes to cross in, and that 
they must get away from that place before the 
Sauks and Foxes arrived. 

"They said they would come down immedi- 
ately on the return of the absent party; that 
they were afraid of the Sauks, and did nut wish 
to leave a small part of their band behind, who 
were too few to resist if they would meet them. 
I then told ihem to send two of their best 
young men on horseback to bring in the hunt- 
ing party. They very promptly complied, and 
in a short time the young men were mounted 
and on their way. I charged the express to 
carry to the absent Indians the message I had 
delivered, and to tell Winneshiek especially, 
that his presence was required at the agenc}". 
The chiefs present told me that they thought 
they would all be here certainly in six days, 
and probably sooner. I told them it was of 
great importance to them to come as soon as 
possible, and bring all their canoes on the river; 
that if the Sauks should come to that pointthe}' 
were not strong enough to prevent them from 
taking their canoes (if they did not kill tiu-ni), 
and crossing over the river ; that shouKl they 
effect a passage to the west side of the river, at 
any point above this place, within their couutry, 

they would be suspected of assisting them, and 
if it should be known that they had done so, 
they would lose their annuities and be treated 
as allies of the Sauks and Foxes. They prom- 
ised to start for tliis place on the return of the 
absent party and bring all their canoes with 
thetn. From their apparent anxiety, I think 
they will be here in three or four days at the 
farthest, though they said it might be six. 

"The Sioux chief, L'Ark, who left this place 
on the evening of the 25lli inst., passed Black 
river this morning before our arrival, and will 
reach his people with the news (which he re- 
ceived from here) to-day. Having done all we 
could, we left La Crosse at 10 a. M.,and reached 
tills place at 3 p. m., making ninety miles in 
five hours." 

It was but a few days after this the 2d of August, 
18.32, that Gen. Atkinson over-hauled the broken 
fragments of Black Hawk's army, fatigued, 
hungry and dispirited, and attacked them on the 
bottoms of the Mississippi, a few miles below 
the mouth of Bad Ax river, about forty-five 
miles above Prairie du Chien, and totally de- 
feated and scattered them, as related in a pre- 
vious chapter. Black Hawk was soon after 
taken prisoner by a company of Winnebagoes. 
Mr. Burnett met them soon after the capture, 
to whom Black Hawk gave a piece of red rib- 
bon which was tied to his hair. 

[By John A. Wakefield. 18.33.] 

As soon as the battle was over, all the 
wounded were collected to one place, and, with 
those of our enemy, were examined and their 
wounds dressed ; there was no difference here 
between our men and our enemy. The differ- 
ent surgeons did their best for both. They 
were no longer able to do us any harm, but 
were in our power and begging for mercy, and 
we acted like a civiiizeil )ieople, although it was 
with the worst kind of enemies, and one that 
had done so much mischief and had taken away 
so many of the lives of our fellow citizens. 



We had killed and wounded a great many of 
these wretched wanderers, that have no home 
in the world, but are like the wild beasts, more 
llian man, wandering from forest to forest, and 
not making any improvement in the natural 
mind. All their study is how to proceed in the 
eliuse, or take t;calps in time of war. But, 
although they are a raiseiable race of people, 
anil live a wretched life, they are much fright- 
ened when they see death staring them in the 
face, which was the case at this time. When 
we came upon the squaws and children, they 
raised a scream and cry loud enough to affect 
the stoutest man upon earth. If they liad 
shown themselves they would have come off 
much better, but fear prevented them, and 
in their retreat, trying to hide from us, many 
of them were killed, but contrary to the wish 
of every man, as neither officer nor private 
intended to have spilt the blood of those squaws 
and children. But sucli was their fate ; some 
of them were killed, but imt intentionally by 
any man, as all were mcTi of too much sense of 
honor an<l feeling to have killed any but those 
who were able to harm us. We all well knew 
the squaws and children could do us no harm 
and could not hel[> what the old Black Hawk 
and the other chiefs did. 

The prisoners we took seemed to lament their 
ever having raised arras against the United 
States, and appeared to blame the Black Hawk 
and tl)e Prophet for the miserable condition 
tiiat their tribe was then in, but at the same 
time appeared to rejoice that they were pris- 
oners of war, which jjlainly showed that they 
ha 1 some faith in our humanity and that they 
wiiuld exchange the life they were then living 
for any other. 'I'hey appeared to manifest 
every token of honesty in their examination. 
Thi-y staled tliat Black Hawk had stolen off up 
the river at the commencement of the battle, 
witii s me few of his warriors and a few squaws 
and children. I think the number of warriors 
was Ion, and thirty-five women and children, or, 
in other word.-, four lodges, which is the Indian 

phrase, as they do not know how to count by 
numbers They were examined respecting tlie 
first battle we had with thi-m on the Wisconsin 
and they stated that we killed sixty-eight on 
the field of action, and that twenty-five had died 
since from their wounds, making in all ninety- 
three that we are certain we killed in that 
battle, beside.^ a number more that there is no 
doubt still lingered and died with their wounds. 
Putting together what were killed in the two 
battles, and all the little skiimishes, we must 
have destroyed upwards of 4U0of these unhapjjy 
and miserable beings, which was occasioned, no 
doul)t by the superstitious ideas which were in- 
stilled into their minds by the Prophet. Al- 
though I have already stated that those unhappy 
wanderers make no improvement in the natural 
mind, thej still, by instinct, believe in an over- 
ruling Providence, and are the most credulous 
people upon earth. They pay much atteution 
to their dreams, and if one of their Nation 
dreams mucli, he soon takes the name of 
prophet, as they believe it to be a visitation of 
the Great Spirit. One morning I chanced to 
rise very early, and taking a walk through the 
encaigpment, accidentally wandered to where 
the Indians were encamped. It was just at 
the dawn of day, and they were just beginning 
their morning worship of the Great Spirit. I 
had often heard that these uninformed children 
of the forest believed that there was a God, 
and tried to worship Him, which made me call 
a halt to see if what I had beard respecting this 
unhappy people was true. They commenced 
by three of them standing up witli their faces 
to the east; one of them commenced a kind of 
talk, as though he was talking to some person 
at a distance, at the same time shaking a gourd, 
which from the rattling, I should have taken to 
be full of pebbles or beans. The other two 
stood very still, looking towards tlie east; the 
others were all sitting around in the most perfect 
silence, when the old prophet, priest, or what- 
ever they called him, commenced a kind of 
song, which I believe is the common one sung 



by the Indians on all occasions. It was as near 
as I could make it out, in the following words: 
"He-aw-aw-he-aw-how-he-aw-hnm," with a great 
many elevations and falls in their tone, and 
beating time with the gourd of pebbles. When 
this song was sung, they commenced a kind of 
prayer, which I thought the most soleinn thing 
I had witnessed. It was a long monotonous 
note, occasionally dropping by a number of 
tones at once, to a low and unearthly murmur. 
When he had done he handed the gourd of peb- 
bles to one of the two that stood by him, who 
went, as near as I could ascertain through the 
same ceremony, still shaking the gourd. When 
he had done he handed it to the third, who 
went through the same motions, and making 
use of the same words that the first two had 
done, which I suppose was a supplication or 
prayer to the Great Spirit to give them plenty 
to eat, and strength to conquer their enemies. 
It is stated by those who are acquainted with 
this race of people, that they are very much 
afraid of offending the Great Spirit. If they 
have bad luck in hunting, they think it is 
caused by their having offended the Great Sjiii'it, 
and they make an atonement, by offering up or 
making sacrifice of something that they set 
much store by, such as burning their tobacco, or 
something else that they dote upon very much, 
but there is nothing in this world that they 
think more of than tobacco, as smoking they 
think is almost as indispensibly necessary as 

I must now return to the battle ground with 
my subject. After the battle was all over, and 
the wounded all attended to the prisonei's and 
the wounded of both parties were put on board 
of the seamboat IVfirrior, and taken down to 
Prairie duChien, where the wounded vveie taken 
to the hospital and the prisoners put in contiiie- 

The boat returned to us the next morning. 
We are still at the battle ground, or near it; 
whilst we lay there our men were still picking 
up scattering Indians. * They brought in an old 

chief who was wounded. He was very poor 
was between six and seven feet high, what hair 
was on his head was gray, but that was not 
much, as the most of it was shaved off, just 
leaving enough for hand-hold to scalp him by, 
as these supertitious beings think it would be 
a mark of cowardice to cut off this tuft of hair, 
which they call their scalp. These superstitious 
being believe that if they are maimed or dis- 
figured in this world they will appear in the 
same form, which is the reason they scarcely 
ever bury their dead. If he should chance to 
lose his scalp they think that it would show in 
the next world that he had been conquered and 
scalped by an enemy which would go to show 
that he was not a great warrior. 

Gen. Atkinson now thought he had taken 
just retriluition for the blood these Indians had 
spiit on our frontiers, and saw that it would be 
useless to cross the river in pursuit of those 
wretched beings for they were now scattered 
and hid in the swamps, so ttiatit was an impossi- 
ble thing to take many of them. He finally came 
to the conclusion to drop down to Prairie du 
Chien and have a talk with the Winneba- 
goes, for it was now manifest that they had 
been allie.'s to the Sacs and Foxes for the prison- 
ers that we took in this action put ail doubts to 
rest on this score. We had a long time be- 
lieved that they were acting treacherously and 
Gen. Atkinson now thought that it was time to 
l)ring them to an account for their conduct. He 
accordingly on the second day after the bat- 
tle, which was the 4th of Augu'^t, took up the 
line of march for Prairie du Chien, but before 
Gen. Atkinson left the battle ground he provis" 
ioned a number of Sioux and some Winnebagoes 
and sent them in search of Black I'awk to see 
if they could not capture him, and bring him in 
as a prisoner, which the Sioux appeared to be 
anxious to do as the Sacs and they had been at 
variance a long time and they saw tliat there 
was no chance of taking levenge for the many 
injuries the Sacs had dom; them. Gen. 
Atkinson and the infantry went down on the 



steamboat Warrior Sind reached Prairie du Chien 
tbe same daj' we started. The mounted men, bag- 
gage and all went down by land and reaclie<i 
Prairie du Chien the next day, which was the oth 
of August. On entering the settlement of 
Prairie duChien we witnessed a very novel scene. 
The Monomonoe Indians were rejoicing at the 
defeat of the Sacs and Foxes, and were express- 
ing it by music and dancing. They had ob- 
tained several scalps, amongst which were some 
of the squaws, which they always gave to their 
squaws. They had given their squaws several 
of them and were making music for tliem 
to dance around them. It was, as near as 
I could observe, in the following way: The 
men all stood in a row with gourds in their 
liandi", shaking them in a very regular order, 
while one old fellow was beating on the head a 
kind of drum, which is generally a deer skin 
stretched over a hollow gum, sawed to the 
length of our drums. They never use but one 
stick and that very slow. The squaws were 
all paraded in front of the men, facing them, 
and the squaws, who were related to those 
whom the Sacs and Foxes killed in 1831, held 
scalps of the Sacs and Foxes squaws, on long 
poles and stood in the center between the two 
lines, shaking them while the other squaws and 
the men danced around them, apparently try- 
ing to keep time with the rattling of the gourds 
and the sound of the drum and all at the same 
time singing the song usually sung by all Na- 
tions of Indians, consisting only of a few simple 
words that I have already repeated; but they 
rise and fall very singularly and always beat 
time to the song with their feet; when the song 
gets to the highest pitch they jump up very 
high and sometimes stamp with their feet. 
They generally bend forward toward each other, 
sometimes with their noses so close as to touch. 
The squaws appeared to exert all the power 
they were master of in shaking the scalps, and 
using their feet at the same time with the drum- 
mer and the gourd shaker, and from tlieir coun- 
tenances they appeared to be perfectly happy. 

Gen. Atkinson, on the second day after we 
arrived at Prairie du Chien, had the principal 
chiefs of the Winncbagoes, and a few of the 
Menomonees, at Gen. Street's, the Indian agent 
at Prairie du Chien, and had a talk with them, 
lie told them that they had given him reason to 
think they were not true to him, as he had 
caught them in many lies, which tiiey tried to 
deny. lie then accused Winneshiek of aiding 
the Sacs, and inquired of him where his two 
sons were. The answer of Winneshiek was, 
that he did not know where they were. Gen. 
Atkinson then asked him if they were not with 
]>lack Hawk. His answer was that one had 
been with him, but he did not know where he 
was then. Gen. Atkinson then ordered him to 
be put in prison until his sons could be pro- 
duced. He then had a talk with the Menomo- 
nees, who had never been at war with the 
United States. They professed all the friend- 
ship in the world for our government; and stated 
that they had never done us any harm, and did 
not tell lies, and that if the)' wanted to do any 
harm now that they would not know how. 'Ihis 
was a little Menomonee chief, whose name I do 
not recollect. Gen. Atkinson talked very friendly 
to him and advised him to pursue the same 
friendly course towards the United States, and 
they would be well treated. Wheil this chief 
was done he made a request of Gen. Atkinson, 
whom he termed father, to give each of his 
young men a pair of shoes, and stated that their 
feet were worn out with walking. He then went 
on to explain that wlien he said shoes he meant 
horses, and stated that his young men had been 
promised a horse apiece, and had not got them. 
Gen. Atkinson promised that they should have 
them, or that he would see to it, I do not recol- 
lect which. On the next day, about 1 1 o'clock, 
Winneshiek's sons were brought in, both badly 
wounded, which went to confirm that he and 
his sons were allies to tlie Sacs and Foxes. 
Tiiey had been wounded in the battle on the 
Mississippi. They were put in confinement 
August 7. 



Gen. Scott and suite arrived this morning in 
tlie steamboat Warrior, and assumed tlio com- 
mand of tlie whole army, to wliich station lie 
haiJ been appointed some time previous, but 
was unable to come on sooner, in consequence 
of cholera breaking out in his army. He came 
past several posts and discharged the men 
wherever he found them. 

Gen. Scott concluded to discharge the army 
(or the mounted vohinteers) that were then in 
the field, and demanded Black Hawk, of Keo- 
kuk, as both men and Iiorses were nearly worn 
out with fatigue. Accordingly, on the 8th day 
of August, we left the tented fields and took up 
our line of march to Dickson's, on Rock river, the 
place appointed for us to be discharged at (or 
mustered out of the service of the United States). 
Ail now were eager to press forward. We had 
turned our faces toward our respective homes, 
and notwithstanding that we, as well as our 
horses, were nearly worn out with the fatiguing 
marclies, through the swamps and over the 
mountains, yet all were cheerful, and every 
heart seemed to leap for joy, at the thought of 
being free from the toils and hardships of a 
soldier, to return again to the embraces of a 
wife and children, or a father and mother, 
brotlieis and sisters, and to mingle, once more, 
in the walks and society of the fair sex, which 
appears to be a sovereign balm to man in all 
his alHictions. 

On this day, just at night, we met about 
300 Menomonee Indians in company of an 
American officer from Green Bay, coming to 
join in puisuit of the Sac and Fox Indians. We 
happened to meet tliem in a pi-airie. The offi- 
cer advanced and met us, or we certainly would 
have tired upon them. When we came np to 
them they appeared almost to lament that they 
had not got in before we had the last battle, in 
order that they could liave had an opportunity 
of assisting us in tlie work of death to our com- 
mon enemy. For they are, as I have already 
stated, great enemies to tlie Menomonee In- 
dians. Wlien they left us they seemed to press 

forward with more vigor, as it was their object 
to pursue the balance of the Sacs and Foxes, 
who had made their escape. 

On the next day we began to reach the set- 
tlements in tlie mining country. This was 
again a solemn scene. The farms had mostly 
been sown in grain of some kind or other. 
Those that were in small grain were full ripe 
for tlie sickle; but behold! the liusl)andnian 
was not there to enjoy the benefits of his 
former labor by thrusting in the scythe and 
sickle and gathering in his grain; whicli was 
fast going to destruction. All appeared to be 
solitary, and truly presented a state of mourn- 
ing. But as we advanced a little further into 
the more thickly settled parts we would occa- 
sionally see the smoke just beginning to make 
its appearance from the tops of the chimneys; 
as some of the inhabitants thought that it would 
be as well to risk dying by the tomahawk and 
scalping knife as to lose their grain and die by 
famine; and others had received information 
that we had. slain in battle their troublesome 
enemy, who had driven them from their homes 
and slain many of their neighbors. Whenever 
we approached a house there is no telling the 
joy it would give to the desolate man who had 
lately emerged from some fort, and had left his 
wife and children still in it while he ventured to 
his home to save something for thein to subsist 

I must confess that it filled my heait with 
gratitude and joy to think that I had been in- 
strumental, with many others, in delivering my 
country of those merciless savages, and restor- 
ing those people again to their peaceful homes 
and firesides, there to enjoy in safely the sweets 
of a retired life; for a fort is to a hiisl)an(Inian 
what jail is to a prisoner. The inhabitants of 
this district of country had been shut up in 
forts for the last three months, through fear of 
becoming a prey to Indian barbarity. 

Nothing very interesting occurred on our 
march to Dixons. Lieut. Anderson, of the 
United States army, met us at this point, and 



by til e 17th of August mustered us all out of 
the service of the United States. We sheathed 
our swords and buried our tomahawks and each 
man again became his own commander and 
shaped his own course towards his home, to enjoy 
the social society of his relatives and friends, in 
the j)ursuit of their different avocations in life. 


After the battle of Bad Ax, when Black 
Hawk's band was totally defeated, Brevet Brig- 
adier-General H.Atkinson, of the United States 
army, and J<>seph M. Street, agent for the Win- 
nebagoesat Prairie du <'hien, told the principal 
chiefs of that Nation, that if they would bring 
in the Black Hawk and the Prophet, it would 
be well for them, and that the government of 
the United States would hold them in future as 
friends and treat them kindly, and that they 
would not, ty so doing, be considered any longer 
the friends of the hostile Sacs and Foxes. 

On this declaration, the one-eyed chief, called 
the Decori, and Cheater took some of their 
men with them and went in pursuit of these 
Sac chiefs, in order, if possible, to take them 
prisoners and bring them and deliver them up 
til the Indian agent at Prairie du Chien. On 
the '2'i'lh of August, these two Winnebago chiefs 
returned, bringing with them the Black Hawk 
and the Prophet, the principal movers and in- 
stigators fif the war. The interview with them 
at Prairie du Chien, I have been told, was 
a very interesting scene. I will give the reader 
the substance of their talk with Indian Agent 
Street and Col. Zachary Taylor, which will go 
to show how vigilant and with what perse- 
verence these Winnebago chiefs acted to take 
these prisoners. They were upwards of twentj' 
days gone, after they left Prairie du Chien, 
before they returned with them. 

When they arrived, Black Hawk desired to 
speak to Indian Agent Street. The amount of 
what he said was, that he was not the originator 
of the war ; that he was going where he would 
meet Keokuk, and then he would tell the truth ; 
that he would then tell all aboitt this war which 

had caused so much trouble ; that there were 
chiefs and braves of the Nation who were the 
cause of the continuance of the war ; that he 
did not want to hohl any council with him; 
that when he got where Keokuk was he would 
tell the whole of the origin of the difficulties 
an<l of those who committed it ; that he wanted 
to surrender long ago, Imt others refused ; tliat 
he wanted to surrender to the steamboat War- 
rior, and tried to do so until the second fire; 
that he then ran and went up the river and 
never returned to the battle ground; and his 
determination then was to escape if he could; 
that he did not intend to surrender after that, 
but that when the Winnebagoes came upon 
him, he gave up ; and that he would tell all 
about the disturbance when he got to Rock 

The one-eyed Decori and the Cheater both 
in like manner addressed Mr. Street, whom 
they term their father; which almost all the 
Indians do their agents. The one-eyed Decori 
rose first and addressed him in the following 
manner : 

"My father, I now .-^tand before you. When 
we parted I told you we would return soon; but 
I could not come any sooner. We had to go a 
great distance [to the dales, dells, on the Wis- 
consin river above the portage] ; you see we 
have done what you sent us to do. These are 
the two you told us to get (pointing to Black 
Hawk and the Prophet). We always do what 
you tell us to do, beeatise we know it is for our 
good. My father, you told us to get these men, 
and it would be the cause of much good to the 
Winnebagoes. We have brought them, but it 
has been very hard for us to do it. That one — 
IMacatamish Kakacky — was a great way off. You 
told us to bring them alive ; we have done so. 
If you had told us to l)ring their heads alone, 
we would have done so ; and it would have 
been less difficult for us to do, than what we 
have done. My father, we deliver these men 
into your hands ; we would not deliver them 
even to our brother, the chief of the warriors, 



but to you, because we know you and believe 
you are our friend. We want you to keep them 
safe. If tbey arc to be hurt, we do not wish to 
see it ; wait until we are gone before it is done. 
My father, many little birds have been flying 
about our ears of late, and we thought they 
whispered to us that there was evil intended for 
us; but now we ho])e the evil birds will let 
our ears alone. 

"My father, we know you are our friend, 
because you take our part; tiiis is the reason 
we do what you tell us to do. My father, you say 
you love your red children ; we tliink we love 
you as much or more than you love us. My 
father, we have been promised a great deal if 
we would take these men, that it would do much 
good for otir people ; we now hope to see what 
will be done for us. My father, we have come 
in haste, aud are tired and hungry; we now put 
these men in your liands. We have done all 
you told us to do." 

Mr. Street, the agent of the Winnebagoes 
then said: 

"My children ! you have done well. I told 
you to bring these men to me, and you have 
done so. I am pleased at what you have done. 
It will tend to your good; and, for this reason, 
I am well pleased. I assured the great chief of 
the warriors that, if these men were in your 
country, you would And them and bi'ing them 
to me; that I believed you would do what I 
directed you to do. Now I can say much for 
your good. I will go down to Rock Island with 
ihe prisoners; and I wish you who have brought 
these men especially to go with me, and such 
other cliiefs and warriors as you may select. 
My children! the great cliief of the warriois, 
when he left tliis place, directed me to deliver 
these and all other prisoners to the cliief of the 
warriors. Col. Taylor, who is by my side. 

"Some of the Winnebagoes on the south side 
of the Wisconsin river have befriended the 
Sacs, and some of the Indians of my agency 
have given them aid; this was wrong and dis- 
pleased the great chief of the warriors and 

your great father, the President, and was calcu- 
lated to do much harm. My children! your 
great father, the President at Washington, 
has sent a great war chief from the far east — 
Gen. Scott — with a fresh army of soldiers, who 
is now at Rock Island. 

"Your great father has sent liim and the 
governor of Illinois to hold a council with the 
Indians at Rock Island; he has sent a speech to 
you; and he wishes the chiefs and warriors of 
the Winnebagoes to meet him in council on 
the 10th of September next. I wish you to be 
ready to go along with me to Rock Island. 

"My children! I am well pleased that you 
have taken Black Hawk and the Prophet and 
so nianv others, because it will enable me to 
say much for you to the great cliief of the war- 
riors and your great father the President. I 
shall nowdeliver these two men, Black Hawk 
and the Prophet, to the chief of the warriors 
here. Col. Taylor, who will take good care of 
them until we start to Rock Island." 

Col. Taylor then said: 

"The great chief of the warriors told me to 
take the prisoners when you should bring them 
and send tliem to Rock Island to him. I will 
take them and keep them safe, but use them 
well, and will send them by you and Mr. Street 
when you go down to the council, which will 
be in a few days. Your friend, Mr. Street ad- 
vised you to get ready and go down soon, and 
so do. I tell you again, I will take the prisoners 
and kee]>them safe, but will do them no Iinrm. 
I will deliver them to the gieat chief of the 
warriors, and lie will do with them in such 
manner as he may be ordered by your great 
father, the President." 

Cheater, a Winnebago, said to Mr. Street, the 

"My father! I am young and don't know how 
to make speeches. This is the second time I 
ever spoke to you before the people. My 
father! I am no chief, I am no oratoi-, but I 
have been allowed to speak to you. My father! 



If I sliall not speak as well as others, still you 
must listen to me. 

"My father! when you made the speech to 
Ihe chiefs, Waut^h-kan-decorri, Carimanee, the 
one-eyed Deeorri, and others, the other day, 1 
was there. I heard you. I thoui^ht what you 
said to them you also said to me. You said if 
these two (pointing to Black Hawk and the 
Prophet) were taken by us and brought to you 
there would never any more a l)lack cloud hang 
over your Winnebagoes. My father! your 
words entered into my ears, into my brain and 
into my heart. I left here that very night, 
and you know you have not seen me since, until 
now. My father! I have been a great way. I 
had much trouble; but when I remembered 
what you said I knew you were right. 'Iliis 
made me keep on and do what you told me. 
Near the dale [dells] on the Wisconsin river 1 
took Black Hawk. No one did it but me. 1 
say this in the ears of all present, and tliey 
know it; and now I appeal to the Great Spiiii. 
our Grand Mother, for the truth of what I say. 
My father! I am no chief, but what I liave doni 
is for the benefit of my own Nation, and I hopt 
for tiie good that has been promised us. My 
father! that one, Waboki-shick, is my relation. 
If he is to be hurt I do not wish to see it. My 
father! soldiers sometimes stick the ends of 
their guns [bayonets] into the back of Indian 
inisoners when they are going about in the 
hands of the guard. I hope this will not be 
done to these men." 


Hiack Hawk was sent as a prisoner from 
Prairie du Chien to Jefferson barracks, under 
cliarge of Lieut. Jefferson Davis — then in the 
United States army at Prairie du Chien, and 
thirty years later President of the Confederate 
States. Ulack Hawk was kept a close prisoner 
until April, is.3:{, when he was taken to Wash- 
ington, together with some of his family and 
the Prophet. After an interview with Presi- 
dent Jack.son, and being emphatically told by him 
that the government would compel the red men 

to be at peace, they were sent as prisoners to 
Fortress Monroe, for "levying war," as Davis 
was, thirty-two years later, for the same offense. 
On June -t, 183'1, by order of the President, 
Jilack Hawk and his fellow prisoners were lib- 
erated and sent home, under otlicers appointed 
to conduct them through the principal cities 
of the Union, in order to impress them with a 
proper sense of the power of the whites and of 
the hopelessness of any conflict on the part of the 
Indians with the government of the United 
States. Black Hawk ever after remained quiet, 
lie died Oct. 3, 1S38, and was buried on the 
banks of the Mississippi, in the State of Iowa, 
near the head of the Des Moines rapids, where 
the village of Montrose is located. 

JOHN H. Fonda's narrative. 

The Black Hawk war commenced this year, 
[1832]. Some of Dodge's recruiting officers 
were drumming around here. I met and got 
acquainted with one, named White, and enlisted 
dui'ing the war. A quartermaster was up here 
buying horses. He purchased near 500 head, 
and 1 went with them down to the mouth of 
Rock river, where the ainiy under Atkinson 
was encamped. 

I was under Dodge'.s ci>niman<l of Illinois 
volunteers, and a wilder, more independent set 
of dare-devils I never saw. They had a free- 
and-easy, devil-may-care appearance about them, 
that is never seen in the regulars, and Gen. 
Dodge of all others, was the officer to lead them. 
A number of Sioux, Winnebagoes and some 
Menomonces joined the forces on Rock river. 
I was in the ranks, and my opportunities for 
knowing and seeing the movements of the 
army, from the encampment on Kock river to 
the Four lakes, and to the Wisconsin bluffs, 
were limited. 

Gens. Atkinson, Dodge, Henry and Ale.x- 
ander, lead the different commands. The force 
under Dodge, consisted of 200 or ;iOO men, and 
we jtrocecded to the lakes, through tlie swamps 
towards Black Hawk's camp on Rock river. 
Gen. Dodge was impatient to engage the Ii-- 




dians, and urged the men on ; but orders came 
for our men to proceed to head quarters, where 
we immediately went. 

From Gen. Atkinson's camp we were marched 
to Fort Winnebago, from where we started in 
pursuit of the Indians, who there held the two 
Hall girls prisoners, and were camped at Rock 
River Rapids. Gen. Henry's and Dodge's men 
reach the Rapids, but the Indians had retreated. 
Information was received that the Indians were 
making westward, and getting on their trail, 
we followed them rapidly for two days ; the 
scouts discovered many Indians on the second 
day about camp near the lake. The pursuit 
was renewed on the day after reaching the 
lakes, where one or more of the Indians was 
killed. Our men led the chase, next after the 
scouts, who were continually firing at the In- 
dians The Indians continued to retreat, until 
they reached the Wisconsin river, where some 
made a stand and showed fight, while the others 
crossed the river. Here we were fired on by 
the Indians, and one man was killed and several 
wounded. We returned their fire with effect, 
and then charged them, killing a good many, 
all of whom were scalped by the wild Sucker 

Soon after the skirmish on Wisconsin bluffs, 
Gen. Atkinson came up, and the entire army 
crqssed the river at Pine Bend, (Helena), and 
took the trail on the opposite side, and followed 
it seven or eight miles, in the direction of Prai- 
rie du Chien. When it was discovered that the 
Indians were making for the Mississippi, Gen. 
Atkinson sent me ■■ith little Boiseley to carry a 
dispatch to Fort Crawford, that the inhabitants 
might be ready to prevent the Indians crossing 
in any canoes or boats belonging to the citizens. 
Boiseley and I traveled day and night, and ar- 
rived at the fort without seeing an Indim. 
Black Hawk and his people, with the army in 
pursuit, hnd turned northward, intending to 
ford the Kickapoo high up. 

It \^ as on the 1 St day of August when Boise- 
ley and I reached the Sugar Loaf, at the south 

end of the prairie. As we were taking a look 
over the prairie, previous to starting for the fort, 
we saw the smoke and steam of a boat coming up 
the river, just off the mouth of the Wisconsin. 
We hastened on, and reached the fort as the 
steamer Warrior made the government landing. 
I reported myself to Capt. Loomis, and was di- 
rected to go up the river in the boat. I assisted 
to get a six-pounder from the fort on to the 
Warrior, which cannon was managed by five 
other persons and myself, and was the only 
cannon fired .at the Indians — if not the only one 

The steamboat Warrior was commanded by 
Thoekmorton, and Lieut. Kingsbury was aboard 
with a body of regulars. The cannon was placed 
on the forward part of the boat, without a de- 
fense of any kind; and I have the names of the 
five persons who assisted to manage it, for they 
got on at the prairie when I did. 

The boat steamed up stream with all onboard 
anxious to get a pop at the Indians. Just above 
where Lansing is, we picked up a soldier, who 
had been discharged from Fort Snelling, and 
was coming down the river in a canoe. He had 
come down the west channel, on the Minnesota 
side opposite Bad Ax, and, fortunately for him, 
he did not meet the Indians. We came in sight 
of the Indians south of the Bad Ax river; they 
were collected together on a bench of the land 
close to the Mississippi, and were making efforts 
to get their women across. 

Capt. Dickson's scouts had not come up yet, 
and the Indians raised a white flag and endeav- 
ored to induce the boat to approach the eastshore, 
and succeeded in bringing her close enough to 
pour a shower of balls into her. The cannon 
sent a shower of canister amongst the Indians, 
which was repeated three times, each time 
moving a swath clean through them. After 
discharging the gun three times, (there was only 
three charges of canister shot aboard), the Indians 
retreated to the low ground back from the 
shore, where, lying on their bellies, they were 
safe from us, 


A continual firing of small arms was kept up 
between the persons on board tbe boati and the 
Indians ashore, until the fire-«ood gave out, 
when we were obliged to put back to Prairie du 
Chien to wood up — for there were no woodyards 
on the Mississippi as now. The village was 
roused to carry wood aboard, and we soon 
had a sufficient quantity of that article. A 
lot of Menomonee Indians were also taken on, 
and then, under a full head of steam, we put 
back to the scene of the battle. 

Before we rounded the island, and got within 
sight of the battle-ground, we could hear the 
report of musketry, and then it was that I heard 
Thockmorton say: "Dodge is giving them 
h — 11!" And he guessed right, for as we reached 
the scene of action, the wild volunteers under 
Gen. Do Ige were engaged in a fierce conflict 
with the Indinns. The Indians were driven 
down to the river edge; some of them unde: 
shelter of the bank were firing at the volun 
teers, who had command of the b]nfi"s. Tb' 
Suckers and Hoosiers, as wo calle<l them, fougl i 
like perfect tigers, and carried everytliing befo; 

The troops and Indians on board the Warrim 
kept up a brisk fire on the Indians ashore, who 
fought with a desperation that surpassed every- 
thing I ever saw, during an Indian fight.-and 
T have seen more than one. The Indians were 
between two fires; on the bluffs above them 
were Dickson and his rangers, and Dodge lead- 
ing on his men, wlio needed no urging; while 
we kept steaming back and forth on the river, 
running down those who attempted to cross, and 
shooting at the Indians on shore . 

The soldier we picked up helped to man the 
gun, and during the engagement be was wounded 
in the knee by a rifle ball. The Indians' shots 
would hit the water or patter against the boat, 
but occasionally a rifle ball si'ut with more force, 
«ould whistle through botli sides. Some of the 
Indians, naked to the breech-cloth, slid down 
into the water, where they lai'd. with only tlieir 
mouth and nostrils above the surface; but by 

running the boat closer in to the east shore our 
McMomonees were enabled to make the water 
too hot for them. One after another, they 
jumped nj), and were shot down in attempting 
to gain' cover on the bank above. One warrior, 
more brave than the others, or, perhaps, more 
accustomed to the smell of gun-powder, kept 
his position in the water until the balls fell 
around him like hail, when he also concluded 
to ]}>/gh-a-shee* and commenced to creep up the 
bank. But he never reached the top for Thock- 
morton had his eye upon him, and drawing up 
bis heavy rifle, he sent a ball through the ribs 
of the Indian, who sprang into the air with an 
t((/h/ and fell dead. There was only one per- 
son killed of those who came up on the TTarrior, 
and that was an Indian. The pilot was fired at 
many times, but escaped unharmed, though the 
pilot house was riddled with balls. 

One incident occurred during the battle tliat 
came under my observation, which I must not 
omit to relate. An old Indian brave and his 
five sons, all of whom I had seen on the prairie 
and knew, had taken a stand behind a prostrate 
log, in a little ravine, midway up the bluff; 
from whence they fired on the regulars with 
deadly aim. The old man loaded the guns as 
fast as his sons discharged them, and at each sliot 
a man fell. They knew they could not expect 
quarter, and they sold their lives as dear as pos- 
sible; making the best show of fight, and held 
their ground the firmest of any of the Indians. 
But they could never withstand the men under 
Dodge, for as the volunteers poured over the 
bluff, they each shot a man, and in return, encli 
of the braves were shot down .iiid scaljied by 
the wild volunteers, who out witli their knives, 
and cutting two ]>arallel gashes down their 
backs, would strip the skin from tbe qui\eririg 
flesh, to make razor strops of. In this manner 
I saw the old brave and his five sons lr(at(d, 
and afterward bad a ])iece of ibeir bide. 

* Pugh-<i-8hef — he off—escapr—ip tiuitc n ooiiinion word with 
several of the wcetorn Indian trilies. The Phnwanors usc(' It. 



After the Indians had been completely routed 
on the east side, we carried Col. Taylor and 
his force across the river, to islands opposite, 
which we raked with grape and round shot. 
Taylor and his men charged through the islands 
to the right and left, but they only took a few 
prisoners; mostly women and children. I landed 
with the troops, and was moving along the 
shore to tlie north, when a little Indian boy, 
with one of his arms shot most off, came out of 
the bushes and made signs for something to eat. 
He seeraed perfectly indifferent to pain, and 
only sensible of hunger, for when I carried the 
little naked fellow aboard, some one gave him 
a piece of hard bread, and he stood and ate it, 
with the wounded arm dangling by the torn 

flesh; and so he remained until the arm was 
taken off. 

Old Wa-ba-shaw, with a band of his warriors 
and Menomonees, were sent in pursuit of those 
of Black Hawk's people who crossed the Mis- 
sissippi, and very few of the Sauk and Fox In- 
dians ever reached their own country. The 
Warrior carried down to the Prairie, after the 
fight, the regular troops, wounded men and 
prisoners; among the latter was an old Sauk 
Indian, who attempted to destroy himself by 
pounding his own head with a rock, much to the 
amusement of the soldiers. 

Soon after Black Hawk was captured, the 
volunteers were discharged, and I received a 
land warrant for my two month's service, set- 
tled down and got married. 





The first surveys by the general government 
of lands in Wisconsin, were made south of the 
Wisconsin river and the Fox river of Green 
bay. The northern boundary line of the State 
of Illinois, fixed April 11, 1618, on the parallel 
of 42 degrees 30 minutes north latitude, became, 
properly enough, the base line of these surveys, 
(as indeed of all the surveys afterwards made by 
the United States in this State). A principal 
north and south line, known as the fourth me- 
ridian, was run at right angles, of course with 
the base line, and extending from it to Lake 
Superior. This meridian line is east of all the 
tirritory in Crawford county. It runs south 
through the center of Richland, and continues 
on to the base line on the east boundary of 
Grant and on the west boundary of Lafayette 
and Iowa counties. It extends north, through 
Vernon county, through the eastern part of 
Monroe, Jackson, Clark and other counties; 
until it strikes Lake Superior a short distance 
to the westward of the mouth of Montreal 

Parallel lines to the fourth meridan were 
run every six miles, on the east and west sides 
of it. The intervening six miles between 
lines are called ranges. Range 1 east, is the 
first six miles of territory east of the fourth 
meridian ; range 2 east, is the second six miles ; 
and so on, to Lake Michigan. However, on the 
west side of the fourth meridian, the ranges 
ure numbered consecutively westward. Range 
1 west, is the first six miles of territory west of 
that line ; range 2 west, is the second six miles, 
and so on, to the Mississippi river. Therefore 

it is that Crawford county lies in ranges -3, 4, 5, 
6 and 7 west. 


Parallel lines north of the base line (the north 
boundary line of the State of llHnois) were run 
every six miles, which crossing the ranges at 
right angles, cut the whole into blocks six miles 
square, called townships. These townships are 
numbered by tiers going north, from the base 
line; the first tier being known as township 
north, the second tier, as township 2 north, and 
so on until the extreme north boundary of the 
State (not covered by water) is reached, which 
is of course the extreme north side of the most 
northern of the Apostle islands, in Bayfield 
county. Now, if we begin at the base line and 
count the tiers of townships until Crawford 
county is reached, we discover that we have 
numbered six of them. 

Looking upon the map of the county, we find 
that the first tier of townships on the south is 
numbered the 6th ; but in this tier, there are 
only three townships, and these fractional 
They are townships 6, in ranges 5, 6 and V west 

The next tier is numbered 7. In this are five 
townships — all fractional, except one. They 
are townships 7, in ranges 3, 4, 5, 6 and 7 west. 
The third tier going north is numbered 8. In 
this are five townships — two whole ones and 
three fractional. They are townships 8, in 
ranges 3, 4, 5,6 and 7 west. The fourth tier in 
the county is numbered 9. In this are three 
whole and one fractional township. They are 
townships 9, in ranges 3, 4, 5 and 6 west. The 
fifth tier of townships is numbered 10. In this 



tier are three whole and two fractional town- 
ships. They are townships 10, in ranges 3, 4, 
5, 6 and 7 west. The sixth tier is cut in twain, 
the south half being in Crawford county, while 
the north half is in Vernon county. The tier 
(as a whole) is numbered 11. In it are four 
half townships, and one fractional half. They 
are (half) townships 1 1, in ranges 3, 4, 5, 6 and 
7 west. 

After the several township lines were run, 
then each township was sub-divided into sec- 
tions and quarter sections, called, in surveying 
language, "sectionized." As a section is a mile 
square, there is, of course, in every whole town- 
ship, thirty-six sections of land. Fur conven- 
ience, these are always numbered as follows: 






































In each whole section, there are 640 acres ; 
and, when a section is divided into four parts, 
each quarter section contains 100 acres. It is 
usually in quarter sections that the land of the 
United States is disposed of ; although, if de- 
sired, it will be divided into eighty acre tracts, 
or even forty acres. 


Only two of the civil towns of Crawford 
county contain each a surveyed township — no 
more or less; these are the towns of Haney and 
Scott. The towns of Freeman, Utica, Clayton, 
Seneca, Eastman, Marietta, Wauzeka and Prairie 

du Chien, contain each more lli:ui one Miivuyed 
township; while the town of Bridgeport con- 
tains less than one. 

'J^he town of Haney has, for its territory, 
township !), in range 4 west; while that, of Scott 
has township 9, in range 3 west. All the other 
towns have territory so irregular in their shape, 
that a reference to the map is necessary to un- 
derstand their size and outlines. 


From the field notes of the surveyors and the 
government i)lats, many items of interest are 
obtained. These sources furnish the following 
facts: — The townsliip lines in Crawford county 
were run by \V. A. Hurt, Ira B. Brunson,Pizarro 
Cook and John Ryan, in the years 1839, 1?40, 
1841, 1854, 1857 and 1881, mostly in 1839. 

The sectional lines were run by Orson Lyon, 
Iia B. Brunson, Samuel C. Wiltse, A. L. Haren, 
W. Barrows and John Ryan, in the years 1840, 
1843, 1854, 1857,1881 and 1882, mostly in 1840 
and 1843. 

The first surveying was done by Wm. A. 
Burt, who ran nearly nil the township lines in 
Crawford county in the 4th quarter of 1839. 

The last surveying was done by Pizarro 
Cook, who re-surveyed the town of Haney iu 

Township 6 north, of range 5 west (south- 
western part of Wauzeka) was surveyed by 
Orson Lyon assisted by Truman B. Gorton, 
Samuel Kirkpatrick, chainman, and I. K. Vin- 
derburgh, in the 2d quarter of 1840. 

Township 6 north, of range 6 west (part of 
the town of Bridgeport and a portion of the 
city of Prairie du Chien) was surveyed by 
Orson Lyon, United States deputy surveyor, in 
March, 1840. He was assisted by Trumau B. 
Gorton, Samuel Kirkpatrick, chainman, and I. 
K. Vinderburgh. The surveyor says: "Suiface 
of this townsliip is hilly, rocky and poor second 
rate. Except the river bottom, which is low, 
level, wet, and not fit for cultivation. A\'ell 
timbered with oak, maple, ash and elm. The 



upland is thinly timbered with white, black and 
burr oak, and some hickory undergrowth." 

Township 7 north, of range 3 west (a fraction 
of section 6 only). Orson Lyon surveyed this 
township in April, 1840. He was assisted by 
T. B. Gorton and S. D. Kirkpatrick. 

Township 7 north, of range 4 west (in Mari- 
etta and Wauzeka) was surveyed by Orson Lyon, 
assisted by T. B. Gorton, S. D. Kirkpatrick, 
chainman, and F. Cox. The surveyor has this 
to say of this township: 

"Tiie surface of this township is hilly and 
well timbered, north and east of the Kickapoo 
river. Timber is oak, lynn, elm and sugar 
tree. The river bottoms of the Wisconsin and 
Kickapoo, are low, swampy and third rate. 

"The u[)land between the river bottom and 
bluff is rolling and good second rate land, with 
some first rate. The land in the hills is rocky, 
and poor second and third rate. 

"West and south of the Kickapoo river the 
land is hilly and thinly timbered with white 
and black oak, with an undergrowth of grape 

"The river bottom is level, swampy and third 

Township 7 north, of range 5 west (Wau- 
zeka) was surveyed in the •2d quarter of 1840, 
by Orson Lyon, United States deputy surveyor, 
who was assisted by Truman B. Gorton, S. D. 
Kirkpatrick, chainmen, and Isaac K. Vinder- 
burgh. This township, says the surveyor, "is 
hilly and broken, soil third rate and poor sec- 
ond rate, also some little first rate land. Tim- 
bered with black oak, with but little under- 

"J^ownship 7 north, of range 6 west (part of 
Bridgeport, and of the city and town of Prairie 
du Chien) was surveyed in the )st quarter of 1840 
by Orson Lyon, assisted by T. B. Gorton, hind 
cliainman; S. D. Kirkpatrick, fore chainman; 
J. B. Cartz, marker. 

In his field notes, Mr Lyon says: "The sur- 
face of this township is hilly, and in many 
l>laces broken and rocky. The soil with few 

exceptions is poor second and third rate lands. 
"The timber is principally white oak, with lit- 
tle undergrowth. 

The hollows are mostly without timber. Soil, 
first rate." 

Township 7 north, of range 7 west (town and 
city of Prairie du Chien, in part) was, some por- 
tions of it, surveyed in March and July, 1857, 
by Ira Brunsou. 

Township 8 north, of range 3 west (part of 
Marietta) was surveyed in the 2d and 3d quar- 
ters of 1840 by Orson Lyon, assisted by T. Cox 
and John Corley. The surveyor says: "Surface 
hilly, soil broken, bushy and might be called 
third rate. 

"The timber is oak, lynn and sugar-tree, ex- 
cei)ting on the river and creek bottom, where 
the timber is elm, ash, maple and oak, with an 
undergrowth of the same." 

Township 8 north, of range 4 west (parts of 
Marietta, Wauzeka and Eastman), was sur- 
veyed in the 3d quarter of 1S40, by Orson Lyon, 
assisted by John Corley and T. Cox. In his 
notes Mr. Lyon states that the surface is hilly, 
soil broken and poor second rate. 

"East of the Kickapoo river, is well timbered 
with lynn, sugar-tree and oak, with an under- 
growth of the same, with prickly-ash, briars 
and grapevines. In that part of the township 
lying west of the Kickapoo river the soil is sec- 
ond rate, liilly and broken, thinly timbered 
with oak." 

Township 8 north, of range 5 west (parts of 
Eastman and Wauzeka) was surveyed by Orson 
Lyon, in the 2d quarter of 1840; he was assisted 
by chainman S. D. Kirkpatrick and marker, I. 
K. Vinderburgh. The notes of the surveyor are 
as follows: "Surface hilly and broken, in many 
places, and might be called poor second rate 
land. Is thinly timbered with white, black and 
burr oak. The creek bottoms are prairie and 
first rate land." 

Township 8 north, of range 6 west (a part of 

Eastman) was surveyed by Orson Lyon, dejmty 

I surveyor, in March and April, 1840, assisted by 



T. B. Gorton, S. D. Kirkpatrick, chainman,and 
J. B. Chartz, marker. 

Township 8 norfi, of range 1 west (a part of 
Eastman) was surveyed in March and July, 
1857, by Ira B. Brunson. 

Township 9 north, of range 3 west (Scott) was 
surveyed in the 2d quarter of 184 8, by Samuel C. 
Wi'tse, deputy suryeyor. "Majority of this 
township, "says the surveyor, "is composed of 
first and second rate qualities of laud. Whole 
township is heavily timbered, maple and oak 
predominating. Every section contains a capi- 
tal 'sugar orchard' and some of them are cov- 
ered with little else. The streams which are 
all bordered with a dense undergrowth are per- 
manent and full of mountain trout. The water 
is clear, cold and soft, running over pebbly 

Townsliip 9 north, of range 4 west (Haney) 
was surveyed July 2-11, 1843, by Samuel C. 
Wiltse, deputy surveyor, assisted by J. B. Mc 
FarJin, W. J. Curtiss, chainmen, and E. D. 
Smith, marker. Re-surveyed by Pizarro Cook, 
November and December, 1881. 

Township 9 north, of range 5 west (part of 
Seneca) was surveyed in the 2d quarter of 1843 by 
A. L. Haren, deputy surveyor, assisted by Aust n 
Wilder, C. C. Carter, chainman, and C. Ham- 
ilton, marker. The surveyor says: "Surface 
broken. Timber of an inferior quality, with 
the exception of a few groves on the west side 
of the township." 

Township 9 north, range 6 west (part of Sen- 
eca), was surveyed by A. L. Haren, in the 4th 
quarter of 1843. He was assisted by S. P. 
Folsom, S. N. Lester, chainmen, L. Davis, 

TownshiplO north, of range 3 west (aportionof 
Clayton), was surveyed by Samuel C. Wiltse, in 
tlie 3d quarter of 1S43, assisted by J. B. McFar- 
din, W. T. Curtiss, chainmen, and E. D. Smith, 
marker. The surface of this township says Mr. 
Wiltse, "is uneven, the soil shallow. Is valua- 
ble chiefly as a grazing district. Water excel- 
lent and abundant." 

Township 10 north, of range 4 west (parts of 
Utica and Clayton), was surveyed by S. C. 
Wiltse in the 3d quarter of 1843. He was assisted 
J. B. McFardin,W. T. Curtiss, chainmen and E. 
D. Smith, marker. The surveyor says: "Surface 
of this township is hilly, timber and land of 
little value." This township was re-surveyed by 
Pizarro Cook Dec. 7, 1881— Jan. 13, 1882. 

Township 10 north, of range 5 west (parts of 
Utica and Seneca)was_'surveyed in the 3d quarter 
of 1843, by A. L. Haren, assisted by Austin 
Wilder, C. C. Carter, chainmen, C.Hamilton, 
marker. This township is mostly broken, says 
the surveyor, and hilly. The prairie in the south- 
eastern part is rolling first-rate land. The soil 
excepting on the hill sides is a rich sandy loam. 
The hill sides are covered with loose rock and 
flint. Township is exceedingly well watered, 
on the west by streams running into tlie Missis- 
sippi and on the east by streams running into 
ihe Kickapoo. 

Township 10 north, of range 6 wes.t (parts of 
Freeman and Seneca) was surveyed in tlie 4th 
quarter of 1843 by A. ]j. Haren, assisted by L. 
Davis, S. N. Lester and S. P. Folsom. The sur- 
veyor says: "Township is l)roken and hilly and 
is mostly fertile, excepting the steep side iiills 
and bluffs. Upland generally well timbered." 

'i'ownship 11 north, of range 3 west (a part of 
Seni ca) was surveyed in the 3d quarter of 1843, 
hy W. Barrows deputy surveyor, assisted by Ed. 
Fitzpatrick, W. V. Anderson, chainmen, and W. 
P. Easley marker. 

Township 11 north, of range 4 west (parts of 
Clayton and Utica) was surveyed in the 3d 
quarter of 1843, by S. C. Wiltse, assisted by J. 
B. McFardin, W. T. Curtiss, chainmen, E. D. 
Smith, marker. 

Township 11 north, of range 5 west (parts of 
Ulica and Freeman) was surveyed in the 3d 
quarter of 1843, by A. L. Haren, assisted by 
Austin Wilder, C. C. Carter, chainmen, Louis 
Davis, marker. The surveyor says: "Soil most- 
ly rolling, first-rate land or good second-rate 
land. Soil sandy loam." 

i : 



Township 11 north, of range 6 west (a part 
of Eastman) was surveyed in the 3d quarter of 
1843, by A. L. Haren, deputy surveyor, assisted 
by Austin Wilder, C. C. Carter, chainmen, and 
Louis Davis, marker. "Surface extremely 
broken and hilly." 

Township 1 1 north, of range 7 west (a part of 
Freeman) was surveyed in the 4th quarter of 
1843, by A. L. Haren, deputy surveyor, assisted 
by S. P. Folsom, S. N. Lester, chainmen, Louis 
Davis, marker. 


The first land offices in Wisconsin were es- 
tablished under an act of Congress approved 
June 26, 1834, creating additional land districts 
in the States of Illinois and Missouri, and in 
the territory north of the State of Illinois. The 
first section provides "thai all that tract lying 
north of the State of Illinois, west of Lake 
Michigan, south and southeast of the Wisconsin 
and Fox rivers, included in the present territory 
of Michigan, xliall be divided by a north and 
south line, drawn from the northern boundary 
of Illinois along the range of the township line 
west of Fort Winnebago to the Wisconsin 
river, and to be called — the one on the west 
side, the Wisconsin land district, and that on 
the east side the Green Bay land district of the 
territory of Michigan, which two districts shall 
embrace the country north of said rivers when 
the Indian title shall be extinguished, and the 
Green Bay district may be divided so as to form 
two districts, when the President shall deem it 
proper;" and by section three of said act, the 
President was authorized to appoint a register 
and receiver for such office, as soon as a suffi- 
cient number of townships are surveyed. 

An act of Congress, approved June 15, 1836, 
divided the Green Bay land district, as estab- 
lished in 1834, "by a line commencing on the 
western boundary of said district, and iiinning 
thence east between townships 10 and 1 1 north, 
to the line between ranges 17 and 18 east, 
thence north between said ranges of townsliips 
to tlic line between townships 12 and 13 north, 

thence east between said townships 12 and 13 
to Lake Michigan; and all the country bounded 
north by the division line here described; south 
by the base line, east by Lake Michigan and 
west by the division line V)etweeii ranges 8 and 
9 east," to be constituted a separate district, 
and known as the "Milwaukee land'district." 
It included the present counties of Racine, 
Kenosha, Rock, Jefferson, Waukesha, Wal- 
worth and Milwaukee and parts of Green, Dane, 
Washington, Ozaukee, Dodge and Columbia. 

An act was approved March 3, 1 847, creating an 
additional land district in the territory. All 
that portion of the public lands lying north and 
west of the following boundaries, formed a dis- 
trict to be kijown as the Chippewa land district: 
Commencing at the Mississippi river on the line 
between townships 22 and 23 north, running 
thence east along said line to the fourth prin- 
cipal meridian, thence north along said meridian 
line to the line dividing townships 29 and 30, 
thence east along such township line to the 
Wisconsin river, thence up the main channel 
of said river to the boundary line between the 
State of Michigan and the territory of Wiscon- 
sin. The Counties now included in this district 
are: Pepin, Clark, Eau Claire. Dunn, Pierce, 
St Croix, Polk, Barron, Burnett, Douglas, Bay- 
field, Ashland, 'I'aylor, Chippewa and parts of 
Buffalo, Trempealeau and Jackson. 

An act of Congress, approved March 2, 1849, 
changed the location of the land office in the 
Chippewa district from the falls of St. Croix to 
Stillwater, in the county of St. Croix, in the 
proposed territory of Minnesota; and by section 
two of the act, ui additional land office and dis- 
trict was created, comprising all the lands in 
Wisconsin not included in the districts of land 
subject to sale at Green Bay, Milwaukee, or 
Mineral Point, wliich was to be known as tlie 
Western land district, and the President was 
authorized to designate the site where the office 
should be located. Willow river, now Hudson, 
was selected. The district was usually known 
as the St. Croix and Chippewa district, and in- 



eluded St. Croix, La Pointe and parts of Chip- 
pewa and Marathon counties. 

By an act of Congress, approved July 30, 1 852, 
so much of the public lands in Wisconsin as lay 
within a boundary line commencing at the 
southwest corner of township 15 north, of range 
2 east of the fourth principal meridian, thence 
running due east to the southeast corner of 
township 15 north, of range 11 east, of the 
fourth principal meridian, thence north along 
such range line to the north line of the State of 
Wisconsin, thence westwardly along said north 
line to the line between ranges 1 and 2 east of 
fourth principal meridian, thence south to the 
place of beginning, were formed into a new 
district, and known as the Stevens Point land 
district, and a land office located at that place. 
The boundaries enclosed the present counties of 
Juneau, Adams, Marquette, Green Lake, Wau- 
shara, Waupacca, Portage, Wood, Marathon, 
Lincoln and Shawano. 


It will be remembered that the Wisconsin 
land district, by the organic act of the territory, 
was to be extended north of the Wisconsin 
river "when the Indian title should be extin- 
guished." Now, as that event took place in 
1837, it follows that when what is now Craw- 
ford county was surveyed into townships by 
the United States surveyors, it was in the Wis- 
consin land district, the land office being at 
Mineral Point. It was usually called the "Min- 
eral Point land district." The surveys into sec- 
tions and quarter sections were nearly all madi; 
while in the same district; hence the early set- 
tlers went to Mineral Point to enter their land. 


An act of Congress, approved March 2, I 849, 
formed the La Crosse laud district, including 
within its limits the following territory : 

"Commencing at a point where the line be- 
tween townships 10 and 11 touches tlie Mis- 
sissippi river, [in the present county of Craw- 
ford,] and running thence due east of the fourth 
principal meridian; thence north to the line be- 

tween townships 14 and 15 north; thence east 
to the southeast corner of township 15 north, or 
range 1 east of the fourth principal meridian ; 
thence north on the range line to the south line 
of township 31 north; thence west on the line 
between townships 30 and 31 to the Chippewa 
river; thence down said river to the junction 
with the Mississippi river, thence down said 
river to the place of beginning." 

This included, though it has since been les- 
sened, so much of Crawford as lies north of the 
line between townships 10 and 11, all of the 
present county of Vernon, likewise that of La 
Crosse, Monroe, BufEalo, Trempealeau, Eau 
Claire, Clark and parts of Juneau and Chippe*a 

By act of Congress, approved Feb. 24, 1855, 
an additional district was formed of all that 
portion of the Willow river land district lying 
north of the line dividing townships 40 and 41, 
to be called the Fond du Lac district, the office 
to be located by the President as he might 
from time to time direct. The present counties 
of Douglas, Bayfield, Ashland and part of Bur- 
nett were included within its boundaries. 

By an act of Congress, approved March 3, 
1857, so much of the districts of land subject to 
sale at La Crosse and Hudson, in the State of 
Wisconsin, contained in the. following bound- 
aries, were constituted a, new district, to be 
known as the Chippewa land district. North 
of the lit.e dividing townships 24 and 25 north; 
south of the line dividing townships 40 and 41 
north; west of the line dividing ranges 1 and 2 
east; and east of the line dividing ranges 11 
and 12 west. The location of the office was to 
be designated by the President as the public 
interest might require. The present counties 
of Chippewa, Taylor, Eau Claire and Clark 
were in this district. 


There are at the present time six land offices 
in the State. They are located at Menasha, 
Falls of St. Croix, Wausau, La Crosse, Bayfield 
and Eau Claire. By the provisions of law, 



when the number of acres of land iu any one 
district is reduced to 100,000 acres, subject to 
])rivate entry, tlie secretary of tlie interior is 
required to discontinue the office, and the lands 
remaining unsold are transferred to the nearest 
land office, to be tliere subject to sale. Under 
this provision, Crawford county is in the La 
Crosse laud office. 

PIZAKRO cook'.s re-survey is ckawfori) county. 

Under an act of Congress, of Feb. 9, 1880, 
for the survey of all that portion of township 9 
north, of range 4 west, lying east of the Kicka- 
poo river in Crawford county, also township 10 
north of the same range, east of that stream, 
Pizarro Cook, county surveyor of Crawford 
county, was employed by the United States to 
do the work, under the direction of the com- 
missioner of the general land office. The town- 
ship lines had been run ; but the land had not 

been "sectionized." However, as it bad origi- 
nally been returned as hnving been run into 
sections, the work of Mr. Cook is called a re- 
survey. He began work Oct. 2'), 18f 1, and fin- 
ished about the middle of January, 1882. Con- 
gress appropriated, by the act already men- 
tioned, the sum of $1,000 for the work. Mr. 
Cook's bill amounted to -$984.18. 


When the United Stales surveyors crossed 
the Wisconsin river to enter upon the survey, 
in this region of public lands, they found, upon 
their arrival, within what are now the limits of 
Crawford county, certain tracts that were in 
fact not United States lands and had already 
been surveyed. Of course, these tracts were 
not again surveyed. They were the private 
land claims already treated of very fully in the 
previous chapter, which were surveyed by Mr. 
Lyon, deputy United States surveyor, in 1828. 





While it is ti'ue that every man's title to land 
in Crawford county is derived from the United 
States, as in other parts of Wisconsin, yet 
these are not, all of them, thus derived, because 
of purchases fi-om the general government. To 
understand this anomolous state of things, and 
why there are exceptions to the general rule, it 
must be explained that there were residents 
occupying tracts within this county so long 
before the United States had actual possession 
of it, as to entitle them, in strict justice, to be 
considered as the real owners; and, as we shall 
soon see, they were, in many cases, adjudged to 
be the owners — not by purchase from the United 
States, but by. occupation at a certain period. 
In short, these certain individuals, or their 
legal representatives, had their lands confirmed 
to them under certain acts of Congress ; and 
that confirmation started their respective titles 
from the United States as fully and oomjiletely 
as though they had been purchasers of their re- 
spective tracts. 

Mention is made in the ch.apter on the mili- 
tary occupation of the county, of evictions hav- 
ing frequently been made, by the commanders 
of Fort Crawford, of settlers on the "prairie." 
This caused the people to appeal to the Uniled 
States government for protection in the p^sses- 
sion of their property. Congress passed an act 
for their relief, under which the secretary of 
Michigan territory, the register and receiver of 
the Detroit land -office, were commissitmed to 
examine and report upon the matter. Ti e pro 
vision of the Jay treaty of I'TOG, by which the 
inhabitants of Prairie du Chien were received 

into citizenship and guaranteed protection in 
the possession of their lands and other property, 
was made the basis of the settlement, and the 
commissioners were empowered to confirm the 
claims to all farm and village lots that had been 
continuously occupied since the treaty went into 
operation. Isaac Lee was sent from Detroit to 
collect testimony during the summer of 1820. 
In addition to the claims continually occupied 
since 11%%, a number which at that time were 
occupied as a village common, but were subsi- 
quently appropriated by individuals, were re- 
ported favorably. The evicted persons were 
restored to their rights. This settlement was 
co^ifirmed by Congress, and the people of the 
Prairie who had hitherto been compelled to 
rest content witn mere occupation, were guaran- 
teed a reliable title. Some effort was n'ade by 
United States officers to interrupt the confirma- 
tion in a few instances by representing that 
claimanls had taken up arms for Great Britain 
(luring the War of 1812, and thereby incurred 
the penalty of treason. Delay was thus occa- 
sioned in some instances, but the government 
wisely concluded to overlook the offense, in- 
asmuch as they had been made citizens without 
their own volition, and had been drawn into the 
hostile attitude without choice of their own, 
through the peculiar circumstances of their 
situation, and all the claims were eventually 
settled without discrimination upon that poitit. 
The village of Prairie du Cliien also entered a 
claim to an additional tract extending to the 
Kickapoo river, based on the .Sinclair [uirchase 
and a subsequent ratification by the Fox In- 



dians at Caliokia , but the United States refused 
to recognize tlie validity of the purcliase hy 
Sinclair, as the territory was beyond the juris- 
diction of the British crown at the time, and 
denied this additional claim. 

"At the session of Congress of 1819-20," 
says Mr. Lockwood, "an act was passed to take 
testimony relative to the private land claims at 
Sault St. Marys, Mackinaw, Green Bay and 
Prairie du Chien, that were reserved to subjects 
of the British government under Jay's treaty; 
and in the fall of 1820, commissioners were 
dispatched to the different places to take testi- 
mony. A Mr. -Lee came to Prairie du Chien. 
The most of those claims at Prairie du Chien 
were found to come under Jay's treaty, but 
there were several that wanted a year or more 
of coming under it. These facts being reported 
to Congress, they at a subsequent session passed 
an act giving to every settler who was in pos- 
session of land at the date of the declaration of 
war in 1812 against Great Britain, and who had 
continued to submit to the laws of the United 
States, the lands he claimed. 

"It is a matter of history, that the British 
took Mackinaw and subjected its dependences 
to their government, including all the afore- 
named places, and the most part of these claim- 
ants were ignorant Canadians and supposed 
themselves British subjects, not aware that if 
they did not within a year choose, as stipulated 
in the treaty, to continue Hritish subjects, they 
became American citizens; and when the Brit- 
ish government took military possession of the 
country during the War of 1812-15, the mili- 
tary officers in command considered them as 
British subjects, and ordered them to do mili- 
tary duty as militia. Tliey were a comjuered 
people, and feeling that they owed no allegiance 
to the United States, took up arms in obedience 
to the orders of the British oflicers. There were 
some among them intelligent enough to know 
their position, but had they claimed to be 
American citizens and refused to take up arms, 

surrounded as they were by hostile Indians, 
they would not have been safe; especially as 
the British officers did not believe in a British 
subject expatriating himself, and of course 
there was no law of the United States in the 
•onquered country to submit to. Notwith- 
standing all these circumstances being known 
to the officers of the army stationed at Sault 
St. Marys under Maj. Cutler, they got up a 
remonstrance to the government, representing 
these people as traitors; inconsequence of which 
the patents were delayed, to the great annoy- 
ance and sometimes to the great injury of the 

the cosimissioners acts of qtjai.ificatiojt. 

Territory of Michigan, } 
District of Detroit, f 

We, William Woodbridge, Secretary of the 
Territory of Michigan, Peter Audrain, Register, 
and Jonathan Kearsley, Receiver of the Land 
Office of the Land District of Detroit, do, and 
each of us doth solemnly swear, that we will 
impartially exercise and discharge the duties 
imposed upon us by an act of Congress, entitled 
"An act regulating the grants of land in the 
Territory of Michigan," i)assed the 3d day of 
March, 1807; and also "An act to revive the 
powers of the commissioners for ascertaining 
and deciding on claims to land in the District 
of Detroit, and for settling the claims to land at 
Green B.ay and Prairie des Chiens, in the Terri- 
tory of Michigan," passed the 11th day of May, 
1820. So help us God. 

William Woodbridge, 
Peter Audrain, 
J. Kearsley. 

Territory of Michigan, ] 

County of Wayne. \ *''"*'^= 

Personally appeared before me, John McDon- 
ell, one of the Associate Justices of the Court 
of the county of Wayne, and Territory afore- 
said, William Woodbridge, Peter Audrain, and 
Jonathan Kearsley, Esquires, wlio took and 
subscribed the foregoing oath in my presence. 



Given under my hand, at the city of Detroit, 
the 8th of August, 1820. 

John McDonell, 
Associate Justice of the Court of the 
County of Wayne, Territory of Mich. 

Territory of Michigan, ) ^ 

T\ T-w ■ to-wit: 

District of Detroit ) 

I, Henry B. Brevoort, Register of the Land 
Office for the District of Detroit, do solemnly 
swear that I will impartially exercise and dis- 
charge the duties imposed on me by an act of 
Congress entitled "An act regulating the grants 
of land in tlie Territory of Michigan," passed 
on the 3d day of March, 1807; and also "An act 
to revive the powers of the commissioners for 
ascertaining and deciding on claims to land in 
the District of Detroit, and for settling the 
claims to land at Green Bay and Prairie des 
Chiens, in the Territory of Michigan," passed 
the 1 1th day of May, 1820. So help me God. 
Henry B. Beevooet, 

Territory of Michigan, ) 
Land District of Detroit. [ 

Personally appeared before me, this 14th day 
of May, A. D. 1821 [1820] the above-named 
Henry B. Brevoort, Esquire, Register of the 
Land District of Detroit, who took and sub- 
scribed the above written affidavit in my pres- 

Given under my hand the day and year above 

George McDocgali,, 

Justice of the Peace, 
County of Wayne, M. T. 


The following are the instructions to the Agent 
appointed to receive claims and take evidence 
concerning land claims at Green Bay and Prai- 
rie des Chiens. 
Territory of Michigan, } 
Land District of Detroit, \ 

August 8th, 1821 [1820.] 

Sir: — You are hereby notified of your appoint- 
ment (with the approbation of the Secretary of 
the Treasury), and in copformity with the pro- 

visions of the act entitled "An act to revive the 
powers of the Commissioners for ascertaining 
and deciding on claims to land in the District of 
Detroit, and for settling the claims to land at 
Green Bay and Prairie des Chiens, in the Terri- 
tory of Michigan," passed the 11th of May, 1820, 
as agent for the purpose of ascertaining the 
titles and claims to land at the settlements of 
Green Bay and Prairie des Chiens. 

The Secretary of the Treasury has given gen- 
eral directions that you proceed, with as little 
delay as possiblo, taking the various laws which 
relate to your duties as your guide in the exe- 
cution of the trust reposed. 

The evidence of titles and claims which it is 
presumed you will receive, are such as are 
founded upon legal grant made or authorized 
prior to the treaty of Paris (Feb. 10, 176.3), by 
the French government, or subsequent to that 
period and prior to the treaty of peace between 
the LTnited States and Great Britain (Sept. 3, 
1783), or such as may be deducible from some 
act of Congress . 

The whole system heretofore applicable to 
the Land District of Detroit, is presumed to 
have been reinstated in its full extent, except so 
far as controlled by the late law, and made 
specially applicable to the settlements of Green 
Bay and Prairie des Chiens. You will therefore 
not fail to notice that occupancy and possession 
of tracts within either of those settlements, be- 
tween the 1st day of July, 1796, and the 3d day 
of March, 1807, by the present claimants, or 
those under whom they may successively make 
claim, are, by the act of the 3d of March, 18Q7, 
recognized as conferring just claims for confirm- 
ation. And you will also see, by reference to 
the 4th section of the act of the 25th of April, 
1808, that so much of the act of March 3d, 1807, 
as limited the claim to one tract, is repealed. 

These references arc given you that your 
records may not be needlessly burdened: it is 
nevertheless believed that you cannot of riglit 
refuse to receive and record any evidence of 
title, of whatsoever nature that maybe offered, 



for the law clearly contemplates that the power 
of rejecting, as well as confirming all claims, 
resides in the first instance, in the commission- 
ers, and not in the agent. 

It is presumed to he the intention of the law 
that all the evidence of title and claims shall 
be recorded in the English language ; yet, it is 
recommended in all cases of doubtful or tech- 
nical expressions, that you preserve the original 
expression used ; also, in all cases where it is 
desired by the claimants, that yoi. record also 
true copies of entire documents in their original 
language. After being recorded with every 
proof of authentication which is offered, it is 
considered, that the claimants will be entitled 
to receive again of you their deeds or other 
documents. The originals, it is believed, are not 
required to be brought here, unless by the con- 
sent and desire of the claimants. 

A doubt occurs how far it may be competent 
for you to aihninistcr oaths ; that power is not 
expressly given you by law ; it is there given 
only to those who have the right to examine and 
decide. Such implied ]>ovvers only can be sup- 
posed to have been given you as arc really nec- 
e'ssary to enable you conveniently to receive 
the notices and record the evidences of the 
titles and claims ad<luced. The commissioners 
do not deem it necessary, at this time, to ex- 
press an opinion on that point, as they are ad- 
vised that you will receive commissions as 
justice of the peace for each of the two coun- 
ties of Crawford and IJrown, before your de- 
parture, in virtue of which, under the territo- 
rial laws, you will be qualified to administer all 
necessary oaths ; and take all proper affidavits. 

As it is feared (from the characteristic want 
of caution of the Canadian French, as it regards 
the presentation of their title deeds) that most 
of their claims will be attempted to be supported 
by proving continued possession, this proof 
will, of course, consist principally of affidavits