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Title: Wau-bun - The "Early Day" of the North-West
Author: Kinzie, John H., Mrs.
Language: English
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Copyright Status: Not copyrighted in the United States. If you live elsewhere check the laws of your country before downloading this ebook. See comments about copyright issues at end of book.

*** Start of this Doctrine Publishing Corporation Digital Book "Wau-bun - The "Early Day" of the North-West" ***

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_The Publication Committee of the Caxton Club certify that this is one
of an edition of two hundred and fifty-six copies printed on hand-made
paper and three copies printed on Japanese vellum, and that the
printing was done from type which has been distributed._


                   THE "EARLY DAY" OF THE NORTH-WEST

               [Illustration: JULIETTE A. McGILL KINZIE.
        From oil portrait by G. P. A. Healy, painted in 1855,]


                        THE "EARLY DAY" OF THE


                          MRS. JOHN H. KINZIE

                              OF CHICAGO

                            WARFARE," ETC.



                            THE CAXTON CLUB

                        COPYRIGHT BY THE CAXTON
                        CLUB, NINETEEN HUNDRED
                                AND ONE



  Editor's Introduction                                           xiii

  Author's Preface                                                 xxv

                               CHAPTER I

  Departure from Detroit                                             1

                              CHAPTER II

  Michilimackinac--American Fur Company--Indian Trade--Mission
    School--Point St. Ignace                                         5

                              CHAPTER III

  Arrival at Green Bay--Mrs. Arndt--Gen. Root--Political
    Despatches--A Summerset--Shanty-town--Mr. Rolette--Indian
    Morning Song--Mr. Cadle's Mission--Party at Mrs. Doty's--Miss
    Grignons--Mrs. Baird's Party--Hamilton A.--Mrs. Beall           14

                              CHAPTER IV

  Arrangements for Travelling--Fox River--Judge Doty--Judge
    Réaume--M. Boilvin--Canadian Voyageurs; Their Songs--The
    Kakalin--Wish-tay-yun--Rev. Eleazer Williams--Passage through
    the Rapids--Grande Chûte--Christman                             25

                               CHAPTER V

  Beautiful Encampment--Winnebago Lake--Miss Four-Legs--Garlic
    Island--Wild Rice                                               40

                              CHAPTER VI

  Breakfast at Betty More's--Judge Law--Fastidiousness; What
    Came of It                                                      47

                              CHAPTER VII

  Butte des Morts--French Cognomens--Serpentine Course of Fox
    River--Lake Puckaway--Lac de Bœuf--Fort Winnebago            52

                             CHAPTER VIII

  Major and Mrs. Twiggs--A Davis--An Indian Funeral--Conjugal
    Affliction--Indian Chiefs; Talk English--The Wild Cat--The
    Dandy                                                           58

                              CHAPTER IX

  Housekeeping; The First Dinner                                    68

                               CHAPTER X

  Indian Payment--Pawnee Blanc--The Washington Woman--Raising
    Funds                                                           72

                              CHAPTER XI

  Louisa--Garrison Life--Dr. Newhall--Affliction--Domestic
    Accommodations--Ephraim--New Year's Day--Native
    Custom--Day-kau-ray's Views of Education--Capt. Harney's
    Mince-Pie                                                       80

                              CHAPTER XII

  Lizzie Twiggs--Preparations for a Journey--The Regimental
    Tailor                                                          91

                             CHAPTER XIII

  Departure from Fort Winnebago--Duck Creek--Upset in a
    Canoe--Pillon--Encamping in Winter--Four Lakes--Indian
    Encampment--Blue Mound--Morrison's--A Tennessee Woman           96

                              CHAPTER XIV

  Rev. Mr. Kent--Losing One's Way--A Tent Blown Down--Discovery
    of a Fence--Hamilton's Diggings--Frontier Housekeeping--Wm.
    S. Hamilton--A Miner--Hard Riding--Kellogg's Grove             107

                              CHAPTER XV

  Rock River--Dixon's--John Ogie--Missing the Trail--Hours of
    Trouble--Famine in the Camp--Relief                            118

                              CHAPTER XVI

  A Pottowattamie Lodge--A Tempest--Piché's--Hawley's--The
    Dupage--Mr. Dougherty--The Desplaines--Mrs. Lawton--Wolf
    Point--Chicago                                                 130

                             CHAPTER XVII

  Fort Dearborn--Chicago in 1831--First Settlement of Chicago--John
    Kinzie, Sen.--Fate of George Forsyth--Trading Posts--Canadian
   Voyageurs--M. St. Jean--Louis la Liberté                        140

                             CHAPTER XVIII

  Massacre at Chicago                                              155

                              CHAPTER XIX

  Massacre Continued--Mrs. Helm--Ensign Ronan--Capt. Wells--
    Mrs. Holt--Mrs. Heald--The Sau-ga-nash--Sergeant Griffith--
    Mrs. Burns--Black Partridge and Mrs. Lee--Nau-non-gee and
    Sergeant Hays                                                  171

                              CHAPTER XX

  Treatment of American Prisoners by the British--Captivity of
    Mr. Kinzie--Battle on Lake Erie--Cruelty of Gen. Proctor's
    Troops--Gen. Harrison--Rebuilding of Fort Dearborn--Red
    Bird--A Humorous Incident--Cession of the Territory Around
    Chicago                                                        192

                              CHAPTER XXI

  Severe Spring Weather--Pistol-Firing--Milk Punch--A Sermon--
    Pre-emption to "Kinzie's Addition"--Liberal Sentiments         201

                             CHAPTER XXII

  The Captives                                                     206

                             CHAPTER XXIII

  Capt. McKillip--Second Sight--Ball at Hickory Creek--Arrival
    of the "Napoleon"--Troubles of Embarkation                     224

                             CHAPTER XXIV

  Departure for Fort Winnebago--A Frightened Indian--Encampment
    at Dunkley's Grove--Horses Lost--Getting Mired--An Ague Cured
    by a Rattlesnake--Crystal Lake--Story of the Little Rail       233

                              CHAPTER XXV

  Return Journey Continued--Soldiers' Encampment--Big Foot
    Lake--Village of Maunk-suck--A Young Gallant--Climbing
    Mountain-Passes--Turtle-Creek--Kosh-ko-nong--Crossing a
    Marsh--Twenty-Mile Prairie--Hasting's Woods--Duck
    Creek---Brunêt--Home                                           245

                             CHAPTER XXVI

  The Agency--The Blacksmith's House--Building a Kitchen--
    Four-Legs, the Dandy--Indian Views of Civilization--Efforts
    of M. Mazzuchelli--Charlotte                                   260

                             CHAPTER XXVII

  The Cut-Nose--The Fawn--Visit of White Crow--Parting with
    Friends--Christman--Louisa Again--The Sunday-School            269

                            CHAPTER XXVIII

  Plante--Removal--Domestic Inconveniences--Indian Presents--Grand
    mother Day-kau-ray--Indian Customs--Indian Dances--The Medicine
    Dance--Indian Graves--Old Boilvin's Wake                       276

                             CHAPTER XXIX

  Indian Tales--Story of the Red Fox                               287

                              CHAPTER XXX

  Story of Shee-shee-banze                                         295

                             CHAPTER XXXI

  Visit to Green Bay--Disappointment--Return Journey--Knaggs'--
    Blind Indian--Mau-zhee-gaw-gaw Swamp--Bellefontaine            303

                             CHAPTER XXXII

  Commencement of Sauk War--Winnebago Council--Crély--Follett--
    Bravery--The Little Elk--An Alarm--Man-Eater and His Party--
    An Exciting Dance                                              314

                            CHAPTER XXXIII

  Fleeing from the Enemy--Mâtâ--Old Smoker--Meeting with
    Menomonees--Raising the Wind--Garlic Island--Winnebago
    Rapids--The Wau-bee-na-kees--Thunder-Storm--Vitelle--
    Guardapie--Fort Howard                                         326

                             CHAPTER XXXIV

  Panic at Green Bay--Tidings of Cholera--Green Bay Flies--Doyle,
    the Murderer--Death of Lieut. Foster--A Hardened Criminal--
    Good News from the Seat of War--Departure for Home--Shipwreck
    at the Grand Chûte--A Wet Encampment--An Unexpected Arrival--
    Reinforcement of Volunteers--La Grosse Americaine--Arrival
    at Home                                                        339

                             CHAPTER XXXV

  Conclusion of the War--Treaty at Rock Island--Cholera Among the
    Troops--Wau-kaun-kau--Wild-Cat's Frolic at the Mee-kan--
    Surrender of the Winnebago Prisoners                           353

                             CHAPTER XXXVI

  Delay in the Annual Payment--Scalp Dances--Groundless Alarm--
    Arrival of Gov. Porter--Payment--Escape of the Prisoners--
    Neighbors Lost--Reappearance--Robineau--Bellair                363

                            CHAPTER XXXVII

  Agathe--"Kinzie's Addition"--Tomah--Indian Acuteness--Indian
    Simplicity                                                     372

                            CHAPTER XXXVIII

  Famine--Day-kau-ray's Daughter--Noble Resolution of a Chief--
    Bread for the hungry--Rev. Mr. Kent--An Escaped Prisoner--The
    Cut-Nose Again--Leave-taking with Our Red Children--Departure
    from Fort Winnebago                                            380

  Appendix                                                         387

  Notes--By Reuben Gold Thwaites                                   393

  Index                                                            421



  Juliette A. McGill Kinzie                               Frontispiece
      From oil portrait by G. P. A. Healy, painted in 1855.

  John Harris Kinzie                                               xvi
    From copy of oil portrait by G. P. A. Healy, painted by
    Daisy Gordon, in possession of Chicago Historical Society.

  Title-Page to the Orginal Edition                             xxiii

  Michilimackinac                                                   6
    From sketch by Capt. S. Eastman, U. S. A., in Schoolcraft's
    "Indian Tribes," vol. iv., p. 188.

  Fort Howard in 1855                                              14
    From daguerreotype in possession of Wisconsin Historical

  Four-Legs' Village                                                42
    Entrance to Winnebago Lake (the present town of Neenah). From
    sketch by Mrs. Kinzie, in original edition.

  Fort Winnebago in 1831                                            56
    From sketch by Mrs. Kinzie, in original edition.

  A Typical Group of Winnebagoes                                    64
    From photograph in possession of Wisconsin Historical Society.

  Chicago in 1820                                                  140
    From sketch by H. R. Schoolcraft, in "Indian Tribes,"
    vol. iv., p. 192.

  Chicago in 1831                                                  142
    From sketch by Mrs. Kinzie in original edition.

  Map of Chicago in 1830                                           142
    (Original by James Thompson destroyed in Chicago fire,
    October 9, 1871.) From copy thereof, in possession of Chicago
    Historical Society.

  Mark Beaubien                                                    144
    From crayon portrait in possession of Chicago Historical

  The Chicago Portage                                              146
    From the first U. S. Government Survey of the region of the
    portage and site of Chicago, in possession of Chicago
    Historical Society.

  Residence of John Kinzie, Esq.                                   150
    (The first house built in Chicago.) From sketch by Mrs.
    Kinzie, in original edition.

  Old Fort Dearborn, 1803-1812                                     156
    From sketch by Charles H. Ourand, based upon plans drawn by
    Capt. J. Whistler, 1808, in possession of Chicago Historical

  Shaubena                                                         198
    (Chief of the Pottawattomies.) From photograph of oil portrait
    in possession of Chicago Historical Society.

  Big Foot's Village and Lake                                      250
    From sketch by Mrs. Kinzie, in original edition.

  The Grand Chûte--Fox River                                       346
    From sketch by Mrs. Kinzie, in original edition.

  Black Hawk                                                       354
    (Head-man of the Rock River Sacs.) From oil portrait by
    R. M. Sully, in possession of Wisconsin Historical Society.

  Fort Winnebago in 1834                                           353
    (Indian agency buildings on hill to left.) From oil painting,
    based upon plans and local traditions, by Isaac A. Ridgway.


The early history of Chicago has much to do with the Kinzies and
their connections. It is particularly fortunate that one of this
family should have given to the world, out of the abundance of her
recollections of the "early day," what has become a classic in
the historical literature of the Middle West--the Northwest of a
half-century ago.

Kinzie is but an abbreviated form of the old Scotch name of Mackenzie.
John Mackenzie must have been among the first subjects of Great Britain
to emigrate to Canada upon the downfall of the French regime; for his
son John (afterwards called Kinzie) was born in Quebec, in 1763, the
year of the Paris treaty. The family soon moved to Detroit, and there
the elder Mackenzie died, during John's infancy.

The widow had previously been married to a Mr. Haliburton, by whom she
had a daughter, a beautiful and accomplished girl, who in turn became
the mother of General Fleming, Nicholas Low, and Mrs. Charles King, of
New York. John Kinzie was the only issue of the second marriage. In due
time, Mrs. Mackenzie married a third husband--William Forsyth, another
Scotchman, who had come to New York in 1750, fought under Wolfe on the
Plains of Abraham, and was twice wounded. The Forsyths moved to New
York City, whither young John Kinzie was taken. When some ten or eleven
years of age, while at school at Williamsburg, on Long Island, with two
of his half-brothers, Kinzie, a restless, adventurous youth, ran away
to his native town, Quebec. There he was, when nearly starved, picked
up on the streets by a silversmith, and incidentally learned something
of the craft of his benefactor. There are evidences of his being in
Detroit, as a fur-trader, as early as 1795; and by the close of the
century this thrifty young Scotchman is known to have had trading
establishments on the Maumee, at Sandusky, and at St. Josephs, on Lake

Young Kinzie's life had been a continual romance, but it was no less
so than that of his first love. During one of the numerous forays over
the Virginia border, made by the Shawanese during Lord Dunmore's War
(1774), a band of these barbarians swooped down upon the rude cabin of
Isaac McKenzie, who had established himself at the junction of Wolf's
Creek with the Kanawha River. McKenzie's wife was killed, but their
two young and beautiful children, Margaret and Elizabeth, were borne
away to the great Shawanee town of Chillicothe, in what is now Ohio.
Here, in accordance with Indian custom, the girls were adopted into the
family of a chief, one of whose squaws was assigned to their tender

After eighteen years, when Margaret had developed into a young woman
of rare loveliness, she accompanied her foster-father upon a hunting
expedition to the vicinity of the present Fort Wayne, in Indiana. A
young Shawanee chief, present at the hunt, paid mad suit to this forest
beauty; but, still pining for civilization, she scorned her Indian
lover, and he set out to take her by force, as had ever been among his
people the custom of rejected suitors. At midnight, as the nomadic
village was echoing with the din made by the chief's followers, who
were preparing to assist in this intended capture of a wife, Margaret
silently stole from her wigwam, for it was a case in which custom
decreed that she must rely solely upon herself, and took refuge in the
depths of the forest. Her persistent lover was close at her heels. She
ordered her faithful dog to attack him, and while man and brute were
engaged in savage combat, flew through the woods to the stockade where
the ponies were kept. Leaping on the back of a favorite, Margaret plied
him with rope-end and voice, through seventy-five miles of wilderness,
all the way to her barbaric home in Chillicothe, where the poor animal
dropped dead. Here, at last, she was safe from her lover's attentions.

Not long after Margaret's thrilling experience, the two girls were
taken to Detroit by their foster-father, who proudly showed them to his
white friends. The old chief, however, recked not of the power of love.
A Scotchman named Clark became enamoured of Elizabeth, and John Kinzie
saw in Margaret his heart's desire. The two couples mated in Indian
fashion, and lived together in the woods for some five years--Elizabeth
bearing two children, and Margaret three (William, James, and

When the strength of Indian power in the country north-west of the Ohio
River was at last broken in the decisive battle at the Fallen Timbers,
followed by the treaty of Greenville (1795), and in another year by
the removal of British garrisons from the posts on the upper lakes,
communication was again possible between the American colonists and
the Northwest. Isaac McKenzie heard of the presence of his daughters
in the Michigan wilderness, and in his old age laboriously worked his
way thither to visit them. There was a pathetic reunion; and when
the white-haired frontiersman went back to Virginia, Margaret and
Elizabeth, declining the legal marriage proffered by their consorts,
followed him to the old home, Margaret leaving her children to be cared
for by their father.

Elizabeth in due course legally married a Virginian named Jonas
Clybourn, and Margaret also legally united domestic fortunes with one
Benjamin Hall of that state. Sons of these second unions eventually
came to Chicago, and took prominent parts in the drama of pioneer life
in Illinois and Wisconsin.

In 1800, John Kinzie married Eleanor (Lytle) McKillip, the widow of
a British officer, who had had by him a daughter named Margaret. The
Kinzies, with their infant son, John Harris (born at Sandwich, Ontario,
July 7, 1803), apparently settled at Chicago in the spring of 1804,
John Kinzie being the trader at Fort Dearborn, then just constructed.
Kinzie was also appointed sub-Indian agent, and later was a government
interpreter. His connection with the massacre at Fort Dearborn, in
1812, is best related in _Wau-Bun_ itself. In 1823, he was appointed a
justice of the peace; in 1825, agent at Chicago for the American Fur
Company; he died at Chicago in 1828, aged sixty-five. His four children
by Eleanor were: Jolm Harris (1803), Ellen Marion (1805), Maria Indiana
(1807), and Robert Allen (1810). His two children by Margaret McKenzie
were tenderly reared by Mrs. Kinzie, who, before her marriage, had
been fully informed of the circumstance of the earlier union under the
forest code of the day.

[Illustration: JOHN HARRIS KINZIE.

From copy of oil portrait by G. P. A. Healy, painted by Daisy Gordon,
in possession of Chicago Historical Society.]

It is with John Harris Kinzie that our immediate interest lies. His
early youth was spent in Chicago; he was nine years of age at the time
of the massacre in 1812; during the next four years the family remained
in Detroit, only returning to Chicago when (1816) the former town was
captured by General Harrison; in 1818, he was sent to Mackinac to be
apprenticed to the American Fur Company. Carefully trained to the
conduct of the fur trade, then the principal commercial interest in
the Northwest, young Kinzie was sent, in 1824, to Prairie du Chien,
where he learned the Winnebago language and thereof partly constructed
a grammar. Two years later, we find him installed as private secretary
to Governor Lewis Cass, in whose company he assisted in making numerous
treaties with the aborigines. It was while in this service that he went
to Ohio to study the language and habits of the Wyandots, of whose
tongue he also compiled a grammar. His remarkable proficiency in Indian
languages led to his appointment, in 1829, as Indian agent to the
Winnebagoes, at Fort Winnebago (Portage, Wisconsin). Upon the death of
his father, he fell heir to the Winnebago name, "Shawneeaukee," which
appears so frequently in the text of _Wau-Bun_.

August 9, 1830, Kinzie--now styled "Colonel" by courtesy, because of
his office as Indian agent--was married at Middletown, Connecticut,
to Juliette A. Magill, the authoress of the book of which this is a
new edition. Very little has been garnered concerning the early life
of Miss Magill. She was born in Middletown, September 11, 1806, but
appears to have lived much in the national metropolis, and to have
enjoyed a wide and intimate acquaintance with the "best families" of
the city; her education was certainly not neglected.

The honeymoon of the young pair was in part spent in New York City.
They were at Detroit a few weeks after the wedding, however, and thence
took the steamer "Henry Clay" for Green Bay. The text of _Wau-Bun_
commences with the departure from Detroit, and carries us forward
to their arrival at Green Bay, and later at Fort Winnebago; their
horseback trip to Chicago, the following March, is also interestingly
described. They appear to have permanently made their home in Chicago
in 1834.

In 1841, Colonel Kinzie was appointed registrar of public lands;
seven years later, he was canal collector at Chicago, occupying the
position until President Lincoln commissioned him as a paymaster in the
Union army, with the rank of major. He was still holding this office
when, in the early summer of 1865, being in failing health, he went to
Pennsylvania in company with his wife and son, but died in a railway
carriage near Pittsburg, upon the 21st of June. His widow, two sons,
and a daughter survived him; together with the reputation among his
contemporaries of possessing a lovable, sympathetic soul, broad enough
to appreciate the many good traits of the commonly despised savage,
concerning whom he knew more than most men.

Mrs. Kinzie's death came upon September 15, 1870, while spending the
season at Amagansett, on Long Island, New York. She had sent to a
druggist for some quinine, but through inadvertence he instead sent
morphine, in the taking of which she lost her life. The heroine of
_Wau-Bun_, besides wielding a graceful pen and a facile pencil, was
a woman with marked domestic virtues, and in every walk of life a
charming character.

The first public appearance of Mrs. Kinzie as an author was in 1844,
when there appeared from the press of Ellis & Fergus, Chicago, an
octavo pamphlet of thirty-four pages, with a plate, entitled _Narrative
of the Massacre at Chicago, August 15, 1812, and of Some Preceding
Events_. This publication was anonymous; but as it bore the name of
John H. Kinzie as the holder of the copyright, most readers assumed
that he was the author. In time, it came to be known that his wife had
written the work. The footnote to the opening page of chapter xviii of
_Wau-Bun_ (page 155 of our text) says that her story of the massacre
was first published in 1836; but apparently no copies of this early
publication are now extant. Mrs. Kinzie's narrative was of course
obtained from first hands, her husband and other members of her family
having been witnesses of the tragedy; it has been accepted by the
historians of Illinois as substantially accurate, and other existing
accounts are generally based upon this. With slight variation, the
contents of the pamphlet were transferred to the pages of _Wau-Bun_, of
which they constitute chapters xviii, xix, and xx.

_Wau-Bun_ itself first appeared in 1856 (8vo, pp. 498), from the press
of Derby & Jackson, New York. A second edition was published in 1857,
by D. B. Cooke & Co., of Chicago, the same plates being used, with
nothing changed but the title-page. Very likely it was printed by Derby
& Jackson, in New York, for the Chicago booksellers named--a familiar
device with the publishing trade. A third edition, an entire reset, in
cheap duodecimo form, without illustrations, was published in 1873 by
J. B. Lippincott & Co., Philadelphia (pp. 390). The Lippincotts had,
in 1869, the year before her death, published a novel by Mrs. Kinzie,
entitled _Walter Ogilby_, which apparently had a fair sale; and their
reprint of _Wau-Bun_, which by this time had become scarce and out
of copyright, was no doubt made to still further cultivate a market
created by the novel. Even this reprint is now rare.

_Wau-Bun_ gives us our first, and in some respects our best, insight
into the "early day" of the old Northwest.[A] The graphic illustrations
of early scenes which the author has drawn for us are excellent of
their kind, indicating an artistic capacity certainly unusual upon
the American frontier of seventy years ago. But better than these is
the text itself. The action is sufficiently rapid, the description is
direct, and that the style is unadorned but makes the story appear to
us the more vivid. Upon her pages we seem to see and feel the life at
the frontier military stockades, to understand intimately the social
and economic relations between the savages and the government officials
set over them, to get at the heart of things within the border country
of her day. It is the relation of a cultivated eye-witness, a woman
of the world, who appreciates that what she depicts is but a passing
phase of history, and deserves preservation for the enlightenment
of posterity. Many others have, with more or less success, written
narratives within the same field; Mrs. Kinzie herself occasionally
trips upon dates and facts, and sometimes she deliberately glosses
where the antiquarian would demand recital of naked circumstance; but
take _Wau-Bun_ by large and small, and it may safely be said that to
students of the history of the Middle West, particularly of Illinois
and Wisconsin, Mrs. Kinzie has rendered a service of growing value, and
of its kind practically unique.

[Footnote A: Similar reminiscences, almost as excellent in their
way, but more limited in scope, are: Mrs. Charlotte Ouisconsin Van
Cleve's _Three Score Years and Ten_ (Minneapolis, 1888), and Elizabeth
Thérèse Baird's articles in vols, xiv and xv, _Wisconsin Historical

It is fitting that the Caxton Club should publish a new edition of this
early Chicago classic, with the needed accessories of notes, index, and
additional illustrations. The book deserves to be better known of the
present generation, who will find in it a charming if not fascinating
narrative, giving them an abiding sense of the wonderful transformation
which seventy years have wrought in the development of the Old

The present writer has selected the illustrations and furnished the
Notes, Introduction, and Index to this edition, and exercised a general
oversight of its make-up; to others, however, have been left, by the
Caxton Club, the responsibility for the proof-reading of the text.

Mrs. Eleanor Kinzie Gordon, of Savannah, Ga., a daughter of Colonel and
Mrs. John H. Kinzie, has kindly read the proof-sheets of Introduction
and Notes, and offered several valuable suggestions, which have been
gratefully incorporated in the text.

  R. G. T.

  Madison, Wis., October, 1901.


[** Reproduction of Original Cover








With Illustrations.

H. W. DERBY & Co. 1856.]


Every work partaking of the nature of an autobiography, is supposed to
demand an apology to the public. To refuse such a tribute, would be
to recognize the justice of the charge, so often brought against our
countrymen--of a too great willingness to be made acquainted with the
domestic history and private affairs of their neighbors.

It is, doubtless, to refute this calumny that we find travellers, for
the most part, modestly offering some such form of explanation as this,
to the reader: "That the matter laid before him was, in the first
place, simply letters to friends, never designed to be submitted to
other eyes, and only brought forward now at the solicitation of wiser
judges than the author himself."

No such plea can, in the present instance, be offered. The record of
events in which the writer had herself no share, was preserved in
compliance with the suggestion of a revered relative, whose name often
appears in the following pages. "My child," she would say, "write
these things down, as I tell them to you. Hereafter our children,
and even strangers will feel interested in hearing the story of our
early lives and sufferings." And it is a matter of no small regret
and self-reproach, that much, very much, thus narrated was, through
negligence, or a spirit of procrastination, suffered to pass unrecorded.

With regard to the pictures of domestic life and experience (preserved,
as will be seen in journals, letters, and otherwise), it is true their
publication might have been deferred until the writer had passed away
from the scene of action; and such, it was supposed, would have been
their lot--that they would only have been dragged forth hereafter, to
show to a succeeding generation, what "The Early Day," of our Western
homes had been. It never entered the anticipations of the most sanguine
that the march of improvement and prosperity would, in less than a
quarter of a century, have so obliterated the traces of "the first
beginning," that a vast and intelligent multitude would be crying out
for information in regard to the early settlement of this portion of
our country, which so few are left to furnish.

An opinion has been expressed, that a comparison of the present times
with those that are past, would enable our young people, emigrating
from their luxurious homes at "the East," to bear, in a spirit of
patience and contentment, the slight privations and hardships they
are at this day called to meet with. If, in one instance, this should
be the case, the writer may well feel happy to have incurred even the
charge of egotism, in giving thus much of her own history.

It may be objected that all that is strictly personal, might have been
more modestly put forth under the name of a third person; or that the
events themselves and the scenes might have been described, while those
participating in them might have been kept more in the background. In
the first case, the narrative would have lost its air of truth and
reality--in the second, the experiment would merely have been tried of
dressing up a theatre for representation, and omitting the actors.

Some who read the following sketches, may be inclined to believe that
a residence among our native brethren and an attachment growing out of
our peculiar relation to them, have exaggerated our sympathies, and
our sense of the wrongs they have received at the hands of the whites.
This is not the place to discuss that point. There is a tribunal at
which man shall be judged, for that which he has meted out to his

May our countrymen take heed that their legislation shall never unfit
them to appear "with joy, and not with grief" before that tribunal!

Chicago, July, 1855.




It was on a dark, rainy evening in the month of September, 1830, that
we went on board the steamer "Henry Clay," to take passage for Green
Bay. All our friends in Detroit had congratulated us upon our good
fortune in being spared the voyage in one of the little schooners,
which at this time afforded the ordinary means of communication with
the few and distant settlements on Lakes Huron and Michigan.

Each one had some experience to relate of his own or of his friends'
mischances in these precarious journeys--long detentions on the St.
Clair flats--furious head winds off Thunder Bay, or interminable calms
at Mackinac or the Manitous. That which most enhanced our sense of
peculiar good-luck was the true story of one of our relatives having
left Detroit in the month of June, and reached Chicago in the September
following, having been actually three months in performing what is
sometimes accomplished by even a sail-vessel in four days.

But the certainty of encountering similar misadventures would have
weighed little with me. I was now to visit, nay more, to become a
resident of that land which had for long years been to me a region of
romance. Since the time when, as a child, my highest delight had been
in the letters of a dear relative, describing to me his home and mode
of life in the "Indian country," and still later, in his felicitous
narration of a tour with General Cass, in 1820, to the sources of the
Mississippi[1]--nay, even earlier, in the days when I stood at my
teacher's knee, and spelled out the long word Mich-i-li-mack-i-nac,[2]
that distant land, with its vast lakes, its boundless prairies, and its
mighty forests, had possessed a wonderful charm for my imagination. Now
I was to see it!--it was to be my home!

Our ride to the quay, through the dark by-ways, in a cart, the only
vehicle which at that day could navigate the muddy, unpaved streets of
Detroit, was a theme for much merriment, and not less so, our descent
of the narrow, perpendicular stair-way by which we reached the little
apartment called the Ladies' Cabin. We were highly delighted with
the accommodations, which, by comparison, seemed the very climax of
comfort and convenience; more especially as the occupants of the cabin
consisted, beside myself, of but a lady and two little girls.

Nothing could exceed the pleasantness of our trip for the first
twenty-four hours. There were some officers, old friends, among
the passengers. We had plenty of books. The gentlemen read aloud
occasionally, admired the solitary magnificence of the scenery around
us, the primeval woods, or the vast expanse of water unenlivened by a
single sail, and then betook themselves to their cigar, or their game
of euchre, to while away the hours.

For a time the passage over Thunder Bay was delightful, but alas!
it was not destined, in our favor, to belie its name. A storm came
on, fast and furious--what was worse, it was of long duration. The
pitching and rolling of the little boat, the closeness, and even the
sea-sickness, we bore as became us. They were what we had expected,
and were prepared for. But a new feature of discomfort appeared, which
almost upset our philosophy.

The rain, which fell in torrents, soon made its way through every seam
and pore of deck or moulding. Down the stair-way, through the joints
and crevices, it came, saturating first the carpet, then the bedding,
until, finally, we were completely driven, "by stress of weather,"
into the Gentlemen's Cabin. Way was made for us very gallantly, and
every provision resorted to for our comfort, and we were congratulating
ourselves on having found a haven in our distress, when lo! the seams
above opened, and down upon our devoted heads poured such a flood,
that even umbrellas were an insufficient protection. There was nothing
left for the ladies and children but to betake ourselves to the
berths, which, in this apartment, fortunately remained dry; and here
we continued ensconced the live-long day. Our dinner was served up to
us on our pillows. The gentlemen chose the dryest spots, raised their
umbrellas, and sat under them, telling amusing anecdotes, and saying
funny things to cheer us, until the rain ceased, and at nine o'clock in
the evening we were gladdened by the intelligence that we had reached
the pier at Mackinac.

We were received with the most affectionate cordiality by Mr. and Mrs.
Robert Stuart,[3] at whose hospitable mansion we had been for some days

The repose and comfort of an asylum like this can be best appreciated
by those who have reached it after a tossing and drenching such as ours
had been. A bright, warm fire, and countenances beaming with kindest
interest, dispelled all sensations of fatigue or annoyance.

After a season of pleasant conversation, the servants were assembled,
the chapter of God's word was solemnly read, the hymn chanted, the
prayer of praise and thanksgiving offered, and we were conducted to our
place of repose.

It is not my purpose here to attempt a portrait of those noble friends
whom I thus met for the first time. To an abler pen than mine, should
be assigned the honor of writing the biography of Robert Stuart. All
who have enjoyed the happiness of his acquaintance, or still more,
a sojourn under his hospitable roof, will carry with them, to their
latest hour, the impression of his noble bearing, his genial humor,
his untiring benevolence, his upright, uncompromising adherence to
principle, his ardent philanthropy, his noble disinterestedness. Irving
in his "Astoria," and Franchère in his "Narrative," give many striking
traits of his early character, together with events of his history of a
thrilling and romantic interest, but both have left the most valuable
portion unsaid, his after-life, namely, as a Christian gentleman.

Of his beloved partner, who still survives him, mourning on her
bereaved and solitary pilgrimage, yet cheered by the recollection of
her long and useful course as a "Mother in Israel," we will say no more
than to offer the incense of loving hearts, and prayers for the best
blessings from her Father in Heaven.



Michilimackinac! that gem of the Lakes! How bright and beautiful it
looked as we walked abroad on the following morning! The rain had
passed away, but had left all things glittering in the light of the
sun as it rose up over the waters of Lake Huron, far away to the east.
Before us was the lovely bay, scarcely yet tranquil after the storm,
but dotted with canoes and the boats of the fishermen already getting
out their nets for the trout and white-fish, those treasures of the
deep. Along the beach were scattered the wigwams or lodges of the
Ottawas who had come to the island to trade. The inmates came forth to
gaze upon us. A shout of welcome was sent forth, as they recognized
_Shaw-nee-aw-kee_, who, from a seven years' residence among them, was
well known to each individual.

A shake of the hand, and an emphatic "_Bon-Jour--bon-jour_," is the
customary salutation between the Indian and the white man.

"Do the Indians speak French?" I inquired of my husband. "No; this is
a fashion they have learned of the French traders during many years of

Not less hearty was the greeting of each Canadian _engagé_, as he
trotted forward to pay his respects to "Monsieur John," and to utter
a long string of felicitations, in a most incomprehensible _patois_.
I was forced to take for granted all the good wishes showered upon
"Madame John," of which I could comprehend nothing but the hope that I
should be happy and contented in my "_vie sauvage_."

The object of our early walk was to visit the Mission-house and school
which had been some few years previously established at this place,
by the Presbyterian Board of Missions. It was an object of especial
interest to Mr. and Mrs. Stuart, and its flourishing condition at this
period, and the prospects of extensive future usefulness it held out,
might well gladden their philanthropic hearts. They had lived many
years on the island, and had witnessed its transformation, through
God's blessing on Christian efforts, from a worldly, dissipated
community to one of which it might almost be said, "Religion was every
man's business." This mission establishment was the beloved child and
the common centre of interest of the few Protestant families clustered
around it. Through the zeal and good management of Mr. and Mrs. Ferry,
and the fostering encouragement of the congregation, the school was in
great repute, and it was pleasant to observe the effect of mental and
religious culture in subduing the mischievous, tricky propensities of
the half-breed, and rousing the stolid apathy of the genuine Indian.[4]

These were the palmy days of Mackinac. As the headquarters of the
American Fur Company,[5] and the entrepôt of the whole North-West,
all the trade in supplies and goods on the one hand, and in furs and
products of the Indian country on the other, was in the hands of the
parent establishment or its numerous outposts scattered along Lakes
Superior and Michigan, the Mississippi, or through still more distant


From a sketch by Capt. S. Eastman, U. S. A., in Schoolcraft's "Indian
Tribes," vol. iv., p. 188.]

Probably few are ignorant of the fact, that all the Indian tribes, with
the exception of the Miamis and the Wyandots, had, since the transfer
of the old French possessions to the British Crown, maintained a firm
alliance with the latter. The independence achieved by the United
States did not alter the policy of the natives, nor did our Government
succeed in winning or purchasing their friendship. Great Britain, it
is true, bid high to retain them. Every year the leading men of the
Chippewas, Ottawas, Pottowattamies, Menomonees, Winnebagoes, Sauks,
and Foxes, and even still more remote tribes, journeyed from their
distant homes to Fort Maiden in Upper Canada, to receive their annual
amount of presents from their Great Father across the water. It was
a master-policy thus to keep them in pay, and had enabled those who
practised it to do fearful execution through the aid of such allies in
the last war between the two countries.

The presents they thus received were of considerable value, consisting
of blankets, broadcloths or _strouding_, calicoes, guns, kettles,
traps, silver-works (comprising arm-bands, bracelets, brooches,
and ear-bobs), looking-glasses, combs, and various other trinkets
distributed with no niggardly hand.

The magazines and store-houses of the Fur Company were the resort
of all the upper tribes for the sale of their commodities, and the
purchase of all such articles as they had need of, including those
above enumerated, and also ammunition, which, as well as money and
liquor, their British friends very commendably omitted to furnish them.

Besides their furs, various in kind and often of great value--beaver,
otter, marten, mink, silver-gray and red fox, wolf, bear, and wild
cat, musk-rat, and smoked deer-skins--the Indians brought for trade
maple-sugar in abundance, considerable quantities of both Indian corn
and _petit-blé_,[B] beans and the _folles avoines_,[C] or wild-rice,
while the squaws added to their quota of merchandize a contribution
in the form of moccasins, hunting-pouches, mococks, or little boxes
of birch-bark embroidered with porcupine quills and filled with
maple-sugar, mats of a neat and durable fabric, and toy-models of
Indian cradles, snow shoes, canoes, &c., &c.

[Footnote B: Corn which has been parboiled, shelled from the cob, and
dried in the sun.]

[Footnote C: Literally, _crazy oats_. It is the French name for the

It was no unusual thing, at this period, to see a hundred or more
canoes of Indians at once approaching the island, laden with their
articles of traffic; and if to these we add the squadrons of large
Mackinac boats[6] constantly arriving from the outposts, with the furs,
peltries, and buffalo-robes collected by the distant traders, some idea
may be formed of the extensive operations and important position of the
American Fur Company, as well as of the vast circle of human beings
either immediately or remotely connected with it.

It is no wonder that the philanthropic mind, surveying these races
of uncultivated heathen, should stretch forward to the time when, by
an unwearied devotion of the white man's energies, and an untiring
sacrifice of self and fortune, his red brethren might rise in the scale
of social civilization--when Education and Christianity should go hand
in hand, to make "the wilderness blossom as the rose."

Little did the noble souls at this day rejoicing in the success of
their labors at Mackinac, anticipate that in less than a quarter
of a century there would remain of all these numerous tribes but
a few scattered bands, squalid, degraded, with scarce a vestige
remaining of their former lofty character--their lands cajoled or
wrested from them--the graves of their fathers turned up by the
ploughshare--themselves chased farther and farther towards the setting
sun, until they were literally grudged a resting place on the face of
the earth!

Our visit to the Mission school was of short duration, for the "Henry
Clay" was to leave at two o'clock, and in the meantime we were to see
what we could of the village and its environs, and after that, dine
with Mr. Mitchell, an old friend of my husband. As we walked leisurely
along over the white gravelly road, many of the residences of the old
inhabitants were pointed out to me. There was the dwelling of Madame
Laframboise,[7] an Ottawa woman, whose husband had taught her to read
and write, and who had ever after continued to use the knowledge she
had acquired for the instruction and improvement of the youth among
her own people. It was her custom to receive a class of young pupils
daily at her house, that she might give them lessons in the branches
mentioned, and also in the principles of the Roman Catholic religion,
to which she was deeply devoted. She was a woman of a vast deal of
energy and enterprise--of a tall and commanding figure, and most
dignified deportment. After the death of her husband, who was killed
while away at his trading-post by a Winnebago named _White Ox_, she was
accustomed to visit herself the trading-posts, superintend the clerks
and engagés, and satisfy herself that the business was carried on in a
regular and profitable manner.

The Agency-house, with its unusual luxuries of piazza and gardens, was
situated at the foot of the hill on which the fort was built. It was a
lovely spot, notwithstanding the stunted and dwarfish appearance of all
cultivated vegetation in this cold northern latitude.

The collection of rickety, primitive-looking buildings, occupied
by the officials of the Fur Company, reflected no great credit on
the architectural skill of my husband, who had superintended their
construction, he told me, when little more than a boy.

There were, besides these, the residences of the Dousmans, the Abbotts,
the Biddies, the Drews, and the Lashleys,[8] stretching away along the
base of the beautiful hill, crowned with the white walls and buildings
of the fort, the ascent to which was so steep, that on the precipitous
face nearest the beach staircases were built by which to mount from

My head ached intensely, the effect of the motion of the boat on the
previous day, but I did not like to give up to it; so after I had been
shown all that could be seen of the little settlement in the short time
allowed us, we repaired to Mr. Mitchell's.

We were received by Mrs. M., an extremely pretty, delicate woman, part
French and part Sioux, whose early life had been passed at Prairie du
Chien, on the Mississippi.[9] She had been a great belle among the
young officers at Fort Crawford; so much so, indeed, that the suicide
of the post-surgeon was attributed to an unsuccessful attachment he
had conceived for her. I was greatly struck with her soft and gentle
manners, and the musical intonation of her voice, which I soon learned
was a distinguishing peculiarity of those women in whom are united the
French and native blood.

A lady, then upon a visit to the Mission, was of the company. She
insisted on my lying down upon the sofa, and ministered most kindly to
my suffering head. As she sat by my side, and expatiated upon the new
sphere opening before me, she inquired:

"Do you not realize very strongly the entire deprivation of religious
privileges you will be obliged to suffer in your distant home?"

"The deprivation," said I, "will doubtless be great, but not _entire_;
for I shall have my Prayer-Book, and though destitute of a church, we
need not be without a _mode_ of worship."

How often afterwards, when cheered by the consolations of this precious
book in the midst of the lonely wilderness, did I remember this
conversation, and bless God that I could never, while retaining it, be
without "religious privileges."

We had not yet left the dinner-table, when the bell of the little
steamer sounded to summon us on board, and we bade a hurried farewell
to all our kind friends, bearing with us their hearty wishes for a safe
and prosperous voyage.

A finer sight can scarcely be imagined than Mackinac, from the water.
As we steamed away from the shore, the view came full upon us--the
sloping beach with the scattered wigwams, and canoes drawn up here
and there--the irregular, quaint-looking houses--the white walls of
the fort, and beyond one eminence still more lofty, crowned with the
remains of old Fort Holmes.[10] The whole picture completed, showed the
perfect outline that had given the island its original Indian name,
_Mich-i-li-mack-i-nack_, the Big Turtle.

Then those pure, living waters, in whose depths the fish might be seen
gliding and darting to and fro, whose clearness is such that an object
dropped to the bottom may be discerned at the depth of fifty or sixty
feet, a dollar lying far down on its green bed, looking no larger
than a half dime. I could hardly wonder at the enthusiastic lady who
exclaimed: "Oh! I could wish to be drowned in these pure, beautiful

As we passed the extreme western point of the island, my husband
pointed out to me, far away to the north-west, a promontory which he
told me was Point St. Ignace. It possessed great historic interest, as
one of the earliest white settlements on this continent. The Jesuit
missionaries had established here a church and school as early as 1607,
the same year in which a white settlement was made at St. Augustine, in
Florida, and one year before the founding of Jamestown, Virginia.[11]

All that remains of the enterprises of these devoted men, is the
remembrance of their labors, perpetuated, in most instances, only
by the names of the spots which witnessed their efforts of love
in behalf of their savage brethren. The little French church at
Sandwich, opposite Detroit, alone is left, a witness of the zeal and
self-sacrifice of these pioneers of Christianity.[12]

Passing "Old Mackinac," on the main land, which forms the southern
border of the straits, we soon came out into the broad waters of Lake
Michigan. Every traveller, and every reader of our history, is familiar
with the incidents connected with the taking of the old fort by the
Indians, in the days of Pontiac. How, by means of a game of ball,
played in an apparently friendly spirit outside the walls, and of which
the officers and soldiers had come forth to be spectators, the ball was
dexterously tossed over the wall, and the savages rushing in, under
pretext of finding it, soon got possession and massacred the garrison.

The little Indian village of L'Arbre Croche[13] gleamed far away south,
in the light of the setting sun. With that exception, there was no sign
of living habitation along that vast and wooded shore. The gigantic
forest-trees, and here and there the little glades of prairie opening
to the water, showed a landscape that would have gladdened the eye of
the agriculturist, with its promise of fertility; but it was evidently
untrodden by the foot of man, and we left it, in its solitude, as we
took our course westward across the waters.

The rainy and gusty weather, so incident to the equinoctial season,
overtook us again before we reached the mouth of Green Bay, and kept
us company until the night of our arrival upon the flats, about three
miles below the settlement. Here the little steamer grounded "fast and
hard." As almost every one preferred braving the elements to remaining
cooped up in the quarters we had occupied for the past week, we decided
to trust ourselves to the little boat, spite of wind, and rain, and
darkness, and in due time we reached the shore.



Our arrival at Green Bay was at an unfortunate moment. It was the time
of a treaty between the United States Government and the Menomonees
and Wau-ba-na-kees. Consequently, not only the commissioners of the
treaty, with their clerks and officials, but traders, claimants,
travellers, and idlers innumerable were upon the ground. Most of
these were congregated in the only hotel the place afforded. This
was a tolerably-sized house near the river-side, and as we entered
the long dining-room, cold and dripping from the open boat, we were
infinitely amused at the motley assemblage it contained. Various
groups were seated around. New comers, like ourselves, stood here and
there, for there were not seats enough to accommodate all who sought
entertainment. Judge Arndt, the landlord, sat calm and indifferent,
his hands in his pockets, exhibiting all the phlegm of a Pennsylvania

His fat, notable spouse was trotting round, now stopping to scold
about some one who, "burn his skin!" had fallen short in his duty,
now laughing good humoredly until her sides shook, at some witticism
addressed to her.

She welcomed us very cordially, but to our inquiry, "Can you
accommodate us?" her reply was, "Not I. I have got twice as many people
now as I know what to do with. I have had to turn my own family out of
their quarters, what with the commissioners and the lot of folks that
has come in upon us."

[Illustration: FORT HOWARD IN 1855.

From daguerreotype in possession of Wisconsin Historical Society.]

"What are we to do then? It is too late and stormy to go up to
Shanty-town[15] to seek for lodgings."

"Well, sit you down and take your supper, and we will see what we can

And she actually did contrive to find a little nook, in which we were
glad to take refuge from the multitudes around us.

A slight board partition separated us from the apartment occupied by
General Root, of New York, one of the commissioners of the treaty.
The steamer in which we came had brought the mail, at that day a rare
blessing to the distant settlements. The opening and reading of all the
dispatches, which the General received about bed-time, had, of course,
to be gone through with, before he could retire to rest. His eyes being
weak, his secretaries were employed to read the communications. He was
a little deaf withal, and through the slight division between the two
apartments the contents of the letters, and his comments upon them,
were unpleasantly audible, as he continually admonished his secretary
to raise his voice.

"What is that, Walter? Read that over again."

In vain we coughed and hemmed, and knocked over sundry pieces of
furniture. They were too deeply interested to hear aught that passed
around them, and if we had been politicians we should have had all the
secrets of the _working-men's party_ at our disposal, out of which to
have made capital.

The next morning it was still rain! rain! nothing but rain! In spite
of it, however, the gentlemen would take a small boat to row to the
steamer, to bring up the luggage, not the least important part of that
which appertained to us, being sundry boxes of silver for paying the
annuities to the Winnebagoes at the Portage.

I went out with some others of the company upon the piazza, to witness
their departure. A gentleman pointed out to me Fort Howard, on a
projecting point of the opposite shore, about three-quarters of a mile
distant--the old barracks, the picketed inclosure, the walls, all
looking quaint, and, considering their modern erection, really ancient
and venerable.[16] Presently we turned our attention to the boat, which
had by this time gained the middle of the river. One of the passengers
was standing up in the stern, apparently giving some directions.

"That is rather a venturesome fellow," remarked one; "if he is not
careful he will lose his balance." And at this moment we saw him
actually perform a summerset backward, and disappear in the water.

"Oh!" cried I, "he will be drowned!"

The gentlemen laughed. "No, there he is; they are helping him in again."

The course of the boat was immediately changed, and the party returned
to the shore. It was not until one disembarked and came dripping and
laughing towards me, that I recognized him as my own peculiar property.
He was pleased to treat the matter as a joke, but I thought it rather a
sad beginning of western experience.

He suffered himself to be persuaded to intrust the care of his effects
to his friends, and having changed his dress, prepared to remain
quietly with me, when just at this moment a vehicle drove up to the
door, and we recognized the pleasant, familiar face of our old friend.
Judge Doty.[17]

He had received the news of our arrival, and had come to take us at
once to his hospitable mansion. We were only too happy to gather
together our bags and travelling baskets, and accompany him without
farther ceremony.

Our drive took us first along the edge of Navarino, next through
Shanty-town (the latter a far more appropriate name than the former),
amid mud and mire, over bad roads, and up and down hilly, break-neck
places, until we reached the little brick dwelling of our friends.
Mrs. Doty received us with such true sisterly kindness, and everything
seemed so full of welcome, that we soon felt ourselves at home.

We found that, expecting our arrival, invitations had already been
prepared to assemble the whole circle of Green Bay society to meet us
at an evening party--this, in a new country, being the established mode
of doing honor to guests or strangers.

We learned, upon inquiry, that Captain Harney,[18] who had kindly
offered to come with a boat and crew of soldiers from Fort Winnebago,
to convey us to that place, our destined home, had not yet arrived; we
therefore felt at liberty to make arrangements for a few days of social
enjoyment at "the Bay."

It was pleasant to people, secluded in such a degree from the world at
large, to hear all the news we had brought--all the particulars of life
and manners--the thousand little items that the newspapers of that day
did not dream of furnishing--the fashions, and that general gossip, in
short, which a lady is erroneously supposed more _au fait_ of, than a

I well remember that, in giving and receiving information, the day
passed in a pretty uninterrupted stream of communication. All the party
except myself had made the journey, or rather voyage, up the Fox River
and down the Wisconsin to the Mississippi.

There were plenty of anecdotes of a certain trip performed by them in
company, along with a French trader and his two sisters, now making
their début as western travellers. The manner in which Mademoiselle
Julie would borrow, without leave, a fine damask napkin or two, to wipe
out the ducks in preparation for cooking--the difficulty of persuading
either of the sisters of the propriety of washing and rinsing their
table apparatus nicely before packing it away in the mess-basket, the
consequence of which was, that another nice napkin must be stealthily
whisked out, to wipe the dishes when the hour for meals arrived--the
fun of the young gentleman in hunting up his stray articles, thus
misappropriated, from the nooks and corners of the boat, tying them
with a cord, and hanging them over the stern, to make their way down
the Wisconsin to Prairie du Chien.

Then there was a capital story of M. Rolette[19] himself. At one point
on the route (I think in crossing Winnebago Lake), the travellers met
one of the Company's boats on its way to Green Bay for supplies. M. R.
was one of the agents of the Company, and the people in the boat were
his employés. Of course, after an absence of some weeks from home,
the meeting on these lonely waters and the exchanging of news was an
occasion of great excitement.

The boats were stopped--earnest greetings interchanged--question
followed question.

"_Eh! Bien_--have they finished the new house?"

"_Oui, Monsieur._"

"_Et la cheminée, fume-t-elle?_" (Does the chimney smoke?)

"_Non, Monsieur._"

"And the harvest--how is that?"

"Very fine, indeed."

"Is the mill at work?"

"Yes, plenty of water."

"How is Whip?" (his favorite horse).

"Oh! Whip is first-rate."

Everything, in short, about the store, the farm, the business of
various descriptions being satisfactorily gone over, there was no
occasion for farther delay. It was time to proceed.

"_Eh! Men--adieu! hon voyage!_"

"_Arrachez--mes gens!_" (Go ahead, men!)

Then suddenly--"_Arrétez--arrétez!_" (Stop, stop!)

"_Comment se portent Madame Rolette ct les enfans?_"

(How are Mrs. Rolette and the children?)

       *       *       *       *       *

This day, with its excitement, was at length over, and we retired to
our rest, thankful that we had not General Root and his secretary close
to our bed's head, with their budget of political news.

My slumbers were not destined, however, to be quite undisturbed. I was
awakened, at the first slight peep of dawn by a sound from an apartment
beneath our own--a plaintive, monotonous chant, rising and then falling
in a sort of mournful cadence. It seemed to me a wail of something
unearthly--so wild--so strange--so unaccountable. In terror I awoke my
husband, who reassured me by telling me it was the morning salutation
of the Indians to the opening day.

Some Menomonees had been kindly given shelter for the night in
the kitchen below, and having fulfilled their unvarying custom of
chanting their morning hymn, they now ceased, and again composed
themselves to sleep. But not so their auditor. There was to me
something inexpressibly beautiful in this morning song of praise
from the untaught sons of the forest. What a lesson did it preach to
the civilized, Christianized world, too many of whom lie down and
rise up without an aspiration of thanksgiving to their Almighty
Preserver--without even a remembrance of His care, who gives His angels
charge concerning them! Never has the impression of that simple act
of worship faded from my mind. I have loved to think that, with some,
these strains might be the outpouring of a devotion as pure as that of
the Christian when he utters the inspiring words of the sainted Ken--

"Awake, my soul! and with the sun," etc.

       *       *       *       *       *

Among the visitors who called to offer me a welcome to the West, were
Mr. and Miss Cadle,[20] who were earnestly engaged in the first steps
of their afterwards flourishing enterprise for the education of Indian
and half-breed children. The school-houses and chapel were not yet
erected, but we visited their proposed site, and listened with great
interest to bright anticipations of the future good that was to be
accomplished--the success that was to crown their efforts for taming
the heathen, and teaching them the knowledge of their Saviour, and the
blessings of civilized life. The sequel has shown how little the zeal
of the few can accomplish, when opposed to the cupidity of the many.

       *       *       *       *       *

Our evening party went off as parties do elsewhere. The most
interesting feature to me, because the most novel, was the conversation
of some young ladies to whom I was introduced, natives of Green Bay,
or its vicinity. Their mother was a Me-no-mo-nee, but their father was
a Frenchman, a descendant of a settler some generations back, and who,
there is reason to believe, was a branch of the same family of Grignon
to which the daughter of Madame de Sevigné belonged. At least, it is
said there are in the possession of the family many old papers and
records which would give that impression, although the orthography
of the name has become slightly changed. Be that as it may, the Miss
Grignons were strikingly dignified, well-bred young ladies, and there
was a charm about their soft voices, and original, unsophisticated
remarks, very attractive to a stranger.

They opened to me, however, a new field of apprehension; for, on my
expressing my great impatience to see my new home, they exclaimed, with
a look of wonder:

"_Vous n'avez done pas peur des serpens?_"

"Snakes! Was it possible there were snakes at Fort Winnebago?"

"At the Portage! oh! yes--one can never walk out for
them--rattle-snakes--copper-heads--all sorts!"

I am not naturally timid, but I must confess that the idea of the
_serpens sonnettes_ and the _siffleurs_ was not quite a subject of

There was one among these young ladies whose tall, graceful figure,
rich, blooming complexion, and dark, glancing eye, would have
distinguished her in any drawing-room--and another, whose gentle
sweetness and cultivated taste made it a matter of universal regret
that she was afterwards led to adopt the seclusion of a convent.[21]

Captain Harney and his boat arrived in due time, and active
preparations for the comfort of our journey commenced under the kind
supervision of Mrs. Doty. The mess-basket was stowed with good things
of every description--ham and tongue--biscuit and plum-cake--not to
mention the substantial of crackers, bread, and boiled pork, the latter
of which, however, a lady was supposed to be too fastidious to think of
touching, even if starving in the woods.

We had engaged three Canadian voyageurs to take charge of our tent,
mess-basket, and matters and things in general. Their business it was
to be to cut the wood for our fires, prepare our meals, and give a
helping hand to whatever was going forward. A messenger had also been
sent to the Kakalin, or rapids, twenty-one miles above, to notify
_Wish-tay-yun_ (the blacksmith), the most accomplished guide through
the difficult passes of the river, to be in readiness for our service
on a specified day.

In the meantime, we had leisure for one more party, and it was to
be a "real western hop." Everybody will remember that dance at Mrs.
Baird's.[22] All the people, young and old, that would be gathered
throughout, or, as it was the fashion to express it, _on_ Green Bay,
were assembled. The young officers were up from Fort Howard, looking
so smart in their uniforms. Treasures of finery, long uncalled
forth, were now brought to light. Everybody was bound to do honor
to the strangers by appearing in their very best. It was to be an
entertainment unequalled by any given before. All the house was put
in requisition for the occasion. Desks and seats were unceremoniously
dismissed from Mr. B.'s office, which formed one wing, to afford more
space for the dancers. Not only the front portion of the dwelling, but
even the kitchen was made fit for the reception of company, in case any
primitive visitor, as was sometimes the case, should prefer sitting
down quietly there and smoking his cigar. I do not know that this was
actually done, but it was an emergency that, in those days, had always
to be provided for.

Nothing could exceed the mirth and hilarity of the
company. No restraint, but of good manners--no excess of
conventionalities--genuine, hearty good-humor and enjoyment, such
as pleasant, hospitable people, with just enough of the French
element to add zest to anything like amusement, could furnish, to
make the entertainment agreeable. In a country so new, and where, in
a social gathering the number of the company was, in a slight degree
more important than the quality, the circle was not always, strictly
speaking, select. For instance, the connexions of each family must
be invited, even if there was something "a little peculiar" in their
appearance, manners, or perhaps vocation, which might make their
presence not quite desirable.

I was aware of this, and was therefore more amused than surprised when
a clumsy little man, with a broad, red, laughing face, waddled across
the room to where I had taken my seat after a dance, and thus addressed

"_Miss_ K ----, nobody hain't never introduced you to me, but I've seen
you a good many times, and I know your husband very well, so I thought
I might just as well come and speak to you--my name is A--dt."

"Ah! Mr. A----, good evening. I hope you are enjoying yourself. How is
your sister?"

"Oh! she is a great deal worse--her cold has got into her eye, and it
is all _shot up_."

Then turning full upon a lady[D] who sat near, radiant with youth and
beauty, sparkling with wit and genuine humor:

[Footnote D: A niece of James Fenimore Cooper.]

"Oh! Mrs. Beall,"[23] he began, "what a beautiful gown you have got on,
and how handsome you do look! I declare you're the prettiest woman in
the room, and dance the handsomest."

"Indeed, Mr. A----," replied she, suppressing her love of fun and
assuming a demure look, "I am afraid you flatter me."

"No, I don't--I'm in earnest. I've just come to ask you to dance."

Such was the penalty of being too charming. Poor A----, in a cotillion,
was not the least enlivening part of this evening's entertainment.



It had been arranged that Judge Doty should accompany us in our boat
as far as the Butte des Morts, at which place his attendant would be
waiting with horses to convey him to Mineral Point, where he was to
hold court.

It was a bright and beautiful morning when we left his pleasant home,
to commence our journey up the Fox River. Capt. Harney was proposing to
remain a few days longer at "the Bay," but he called to escort us to
the boat, and install us in all its comforts.

As he helped me along over the ploughed ground and other inequalities
in our way to the river-bank, where the boat lay, he told me how
impatiently Mrs. Twiggs,[24] the wife of the commanding officer,
who, since the past spring had been the only white lady at Fort
Winnebago, was now expecting a companion and friend. We had met in
New York shortly after her marriage, and were, therefore, not quite
unacquainted. I, for my part, felt sure that when there were two of
us--when my piano was safely there--when the Post Library which we
had purchased should be unpacked--when all should be fairly arranged
and settled, we should be, although far away in the wilderness, the
happiest little circle imaginable. All my anticipations were of the
most sanguine and cheerful character.

It was a moderate-sized Mackinac boat, with a crew of soldiers, and
our own three voyageurs in addition, that lay waiting for us--a
dark-looking structure of some thirty feet in length. Placed in the
center was a framework of slight posts, supporting a roof of canvas,
with curtains of the same, which might be let down at the sides and
ends, after the manner of a country stage-coach, or rolled up to admit
the light and air.

In the midst of this little cabin or saloon was placed the box
containing my piano, and on it a mattress, which was to furnish us
a divan through the day and a place of repose at night, should the
weather at any time prove too wet or unpleasant for encamping. The
boxes of silver were stowed next. Our mess-basket was in a convenient
vicinity, and we had purchased a couple of large square covered baskets
of the Waubanakees, or New York Indians, to hold our various necessary
articles of outward apparel and bedding, and at the same time to answer
as very convenient little work or dinner tables.

As a true daughter of New England, it is to be taken for granted I had
not forgotten to supply myself with knitting-work and embroidery. Books
and pencils were a matter of course.

The greater part of our furniture, together with the various articles
for housekeeping with which we had supplied ourselves in New York and
Detroit, were to follow in another boat, under the charge of people
whose business it professed to be to take cargoes safely up the rapids,
and on to Fort Winnebago. This was an enterprise requiring some three
weeks of time and a great amount of labor, so that the owners of the
goods transported might think themselves happy to receive them at last,
in a wet, broken, and dilapidated condition. It was for this reason
that we took our choicest possessions with us, even at the risk of
being a little crowded.

Until now I had never seen a gentleman attired in a colored shirt,
a spotless white collar and bosom being one of those "notions" that
"Boston," and consequently New England "folks," entertained of the
becoming in a gentleman's toilette. Mrs. Cass[25] had laughingly
forewarned me, that not only calico shirts, but patch-work pillow-cases
were an indispensable part of a travelling equipment; and, thanks to
the taste and skill of some tidy little Frenchwoman, I found our divan
pillows all accommodated in the brightest and most variegated garb.

The Judge and my husband were gay with the deepest of blue and pink.
Each was prepared, besides, with a bright red cap (a _bonnet rouge_, or
_tuque_, as the voyageurs call it), which, out of respect for the lady,
was to be donned only when a hearty dinner, a dull book, or the want of
exercise made an afternoon nap indispensable.

The Judge was an admirable travelling companion. He had lived many
years in the country, had been with General Cass on his expedition to
the head waters of the Mississippi, and had a vast fund of anecdote
regarding early times, customs, and inhabitants.

Some instances of the mode of administering justice in those days, I
happen to recall.

There was an old Frenchman at "the Bay," named Réaume,[26] excessively
ignorant and grasping, although otherwise tolerably good-natured. This
man was appointed justice of the peace. Two men once appeared before
him, the one as plaintiff, the other as defendant. The justice listened
patiently to the complaint of the one, and the defence of the other;
then rising, with dignity, he pronounced his decision:

"You are both wrong. You, Bois-vert," to the plaintiff, "you bring me
one load of hay; and you, Crély," to the defendant, "you bring me one
load of wood; and now the matter is settled." It does not appear that
any exceptions were taken to this verdict.

This anecdote led to another, the scene of which was Prairie du Chien,
on the Mississippi.

There was a Frenchman, a justice of the peace, who was universally
known by the name of "Col. Boilvin."[27] His office was just without
the walls of the fort, and it was much the fashion among the officers
to lounge in there of a morning, to find sport for an idle hour, and
to take a glass of brandy-and-water with the old gentleman, which he
called "taking a little _quelque-chose_."

A soldier, named Fry, had been accused of stealing and killing a calf
belonging to M. Rolette, and the constable, a bricklayer of the name of
Bell, had been dispatched to arrest the culprit and bring him to trial.

While the gentlemen were making their customary morning visit to the
justice, a noise was heard in the entry, and a knock at the door.

"Come in," cried the old gentleman, rising and walking toward the door.

_Bell._ Here sir, I have brought Fry to you, as you ordered.

_Justice._ Fry, you great rascal! What for you kill M. Rolette's calf?

_Fry._ I did not kill M. Rolette's calf.

_Justice_ (shaking his fist). You lie, you great rascal! Bell, take him
to jail. Come gentlemen, come, _let us take a leetle quelque-chose_.

The Canadian boatmen always sing while rowing, or paddling, and nothing
encourages them so much as to hear the "bourgeois"[E] take the lead in
the music. If the passengers, more especially those of the fair sex,
join in the refrain, the compliment is all the greater.

[Footnote E: Master--or to use the emphatic Yankee term--_boss_.]

Their songs are of a light cheerful character, generally embodying some
little satire or witticism, calculated to produce a spirited, sometimes
an uproarious chorus.[28]

The song and refrain are carried on somewhat in the following style:

  Bourgeois. Par derriere chéz ma tante, Par derriere chéz ma tante,
  Chorus. Par derriere chéz ma tante, Par derriere chéz ma tante.

  Bourgeois. Il-y-a un coq qui chante, Des pommes, des poires, des
  raves, des choux, Des figues nouvelles, des raisins doux. Chorus. Des
  pommes, des poires, des raves, des choux, Des figues nouvelles, des
  raisins doux.

  Bourgeois. Il-y-a un coq qui chante, Il-y-a un coq qui chante.
  Chorus. Il-y-a un coq qui chante, &c.

  Bourgeois. Demande une femme à prendre Des pommes, des poires, des
  raves, des choux, &c. Chorus. Des pommes, des poires, &c.

  Bourgeois. Demande une femme à prendre, Demande une femme à, &c.

And thus it continues until the advice is given successively.

  Ne prenez pas une noire. Car elles aiment trop à boire, Ne prenez pas
  une rousse. Car elles sont trop jalouses.

And by the time all the different qualifications are rehearsed and
objected to, lengthened out by the interminable repetition of the
chorus, the shout of the bourgeois is heard--

"Whoop la! à terre, à terre--pour la pipe!"

It is an invariable custom for the voyageurs to stop every five or six
miles to rest and smoke, so that it was formerly the way of measuring
distances--"so many pipes," instead of "so many miles."

The Canadian melodies are sometimes very beautiful, and a more
exhilarating mode of travel can hardly be imagined than a voyage
over these waters, amid all the wild magnificence of nature, with
the measured strokes of the oar keeping time to the strains of "_Le
Rosier Blanc_," "_En roulant ma Boule_," or "_Leve ton pied, ma jolie

The climax of fun seemed to be in a comic piece, which, however
oft-repeated, appeared never to grow stale. It was somewhat after this

  Bourgeois. Michaud est monté dans un prunier, Pour treiller des
  prunes. La branche a cassé-- Chorus. Michaud a tombé? Bourgeois. Ou
  est-ce qu-il est? Chorus. Il est en bas. Bourgeois. Oh! réveille,
  réveille, réveille, Oh! réveille, Michaud est en haut![F]

[Footnote F: Michaud climbed into a plum-tree, to gather plums. The
branch broke. _Michaud fell!_ Where is he? _He is down on the ground._
No, he is up in the tree.]

It was always a point of etiquette to look astonished at the luck
of Michaud in remaining in the tree, spite of the breaking of the
branch, and the joke had to be repeated through all the varieties of
fruit-trees that Michaud might be supposed able to climb.

By evening of the first day we arrived at _the Kakalin_, where another
branch of the Grignon family resided.[29] We were very pleasantly
entertained, although in my anxiety to begin my forest life, I would
fain have had the tent pitched on the bank of the river, and have
laid aside, at once, the indulgences of civilization. This, however,
would have been a slight, perhaps an affront, so Ave did much better,
and partook of the good cheer that was offered us in the shape of hot
venison steaks and crepes, and that excellent cup of coffee which none
can prepare like a Frenchwoman, and which is so refreshing after a day
in the open air.

The Kakalin is a rapid of the Fox River, sufficiently important to make
the portage of the heavy lading of a boat necessary; the boat itself
being poled or dragged up with cords against the current. It is one of
a series of rapids and _chûtes_, or falls, which occur between this
point and Lake Winnebago, twenty miles above.[30]

The next morning, after breakfast, we took leave of our hosts, and
prepared to pursue our journey. The bourgeois, from an early hour,
had been occupied in superintending his men in getting the boat and
its loading over the Kakalin. As the late rains had made the paths
through the woods and along the banks of the river somewhat muddy and
uncomfortable for walking, I was put into an ox-cart, to be jolted over
the unequal road; saluting, impartially, all the stumps and stones that
lay in our way, the only means of avoiding which seemed to be, when
the little, thick-headed Frenchman, our conductor, bethought him of
suddenly guiding his cattle into a projecting tree or thorn-bush, to
the great detriment, not only of my straw-bonnet, but of my very eyes.

But we got through at last, and arriving at the head of the rapids, I
found the boat lying there, all in readiness for our re-embarking.

Our Monomonee guide, _Wish-tay-yun_, a fine, stalwart Indian, with an
open, good-humored, one might almost say _roguish_ countenance, came
forward to be presented to me.

"_Bon-jour, bon-jour, maman_," was his laughing salutation. Again I
was surprised, not as before at the French, for to that I had become
accustomed, but at the respectable title he was pleased to bestow upon

"Yes," said my husband, "you must make up your mind to receive a very
numerous and well-grown family, consisting of all the Winnebagoes,
Pottowattamies, Chippewas, and Ottawas, together with such Sioux, Sacs,
and Foxes, and Iowas, as have any point to gain in applying to me. By
the first named tribe, in virtue of my office, and by the others as
a matter of courtesy, I am always addressed as '_father_'--you, of
course, will be their '_mother_.'"

Wish-tay-yun and I were soon good friends, my husband interpreting to
me the Chippewa language in which he spoke. We were impatient to be
off, the morning being already far advanced, and all things being in
readiness, the word was given.

"_Pousse au large, mes gens!_" (Push out, my men).

At this moment a boat was seen leaving the opposite bank of the river
and making towards us. It contained white men, and they showed by
signs that they wished to detain us until they came up. They drew
near, and we found them to be Mr. Marsh,[31] a missionary among the
Wau-ba-na-kees, or the New York Indians, lately brought into this
country, and the Rev. Eleazar Williams,[G] who was at that time living
among his red brethren on the left bank of the Fox River.[32]

[Footnote G: The supposed Dauphin of France.]

To persons so situated, even more emphatically than to those of "the
settlements," the arrival of visitors from the "east countrie" was
a godsend indeed. We had to give all the news of various kinds that
we had brought--political, ecclesiastical, and social--as well as a
tolerably detailed account of what we proposed to do, or rather what we
hoped to be able to do, among our native children at "the Portage."

I was obliged, for my part, to confess that, being almost entirely a
stranger to the Indian character and habits, I was going among them
with no settled plans of any kind--general good-will, and a hope of
making them my friends, being the only principles I could lay claim to
at present. I must leave it for time and a better acquaintance to show
me in what way the principle could be carried out for their greatest

Mr. Williams was a dark-complexioned, good-looking man. Having always
heard him spoken of, by his relations in Connecticut, as "our Indian
cousin," it never occurred to me to doubt his belonging to that race,
although I now think that if I had met him elsewhere, I should have
taken him for a Spaniard or a Mexican. His complexion had decidedly
more of the olive than the copper hue, and his countenance was grave,
almost melancholy. He was very silent during this interview, asking
few questions, and offering no observations except in reply to some
question addressed to him.

It was a hard pull for the men up the rapids. Wish-tay-yun, whose
clear, sonorous voice was the bugle of the party, shouted and
whooped--each one answered with a chorus, and a still more vigorous
effort. By-and-by the boat would become firmly set between two huge

"Whoop la! whoop! whoop!"

Another pull, and another, straining every nerve--in vain.

"She will not budge!"

"Men, overboard!" and instantly every rower is over the side and into
the water.

By pulling, pushing, and tugging, the boat is at length released from
her position, and the men walk along beside her, helping and guiding
her, until they reach a space of comparatively smooth water, when they
again take their seats and their oars.

It will be readily imagined that there were few songs this day, but
very frequent _pipes_, to refresh the poor fellows after such an
arduous service.

It was altogether a new spectacle to me. In fact, I had hardly ever
before been called upon to witness severe bodily exertion, and my
sympathies and sensibilities were, for this reason, the more enlisted
on the occasion. It seemed a sufficient hardship to have to labor in
this violent manner; but to walk in cold water up to their waists, and
then to sit down in their soaking garments without going near a fire!
Poor men! this was too much to be borne! What then was my consternation
to see my husband, who, shortly after our noon-tide meal, had surprised
me by making his appearance in a pair of duck trowsers and light
jacket, at the first cry of "fast, again!" spring over into the water
with the men, and "bear a hand" throughout the remainder of the day.

When he returned on board, it was to take the oar of a poor,
delicate-looking boy, one of the company of soldiers, who from the
first had suffered with bleeding at the nose on every unusual exertion.
I was not surprised, on inquiring, to find that this lad was a recruit
just entered the service. He passed by the name of Gridley, but that
was undoubtedly an assumed name. He had the appearance of having
been delicately nurtured, and had probably enlisted without at all
appreciating the hardships and discomforts of a soldier's life. This
is evident from the dissatisfaction he always continued to feel, until
at length he deserted from his post. This was some months subsequent
to the time of which I am writing. He was once retaken, and kept for
a time in confinement, but immediately on his release deserted again,
and his remains were found the following spring, not many miles from
the fort. He had died either of cold or starvation. This is a sad
interlude--we will return to our boating.

With all our tugging and toiling we had accomplished but thirteen miles
since leaving the Kakalin, and it was already late when we arrived in
view of the "Grande Chûte," near which we were to encamp.

We had passed the "Little Chûte" (the post where the town of Appleton
now stands) without any farther observation than that it required a
vast deal of extra exertion to buffet with the rushing stream, and come
off, as we did, victorious.

The brilliant light of the setting sun was resting on the high wooded
banks through which broke the beautiful, foaming, dashing waters of the
Chûte. The boat was speedily turned toward a little headland projecting
from the right bank, which had the advantage of a long strip of level
ground, sufficiently spacious to afford a good encamping ground. I
jumped ashore before the boat was fairly pulled up by the men, and with
the Judge's help made my way as rapidly as possibly to a point lower
down the river, from which, he said, the best view of the Chûte could
be obtained. I was anxious to make a sketch before the daylight quite
faded away.

The left bank of the river was to the west, and over a portion less
elevated than the rest the sun's parting rays fell upon the boat, the
men with their red caps and belts, and the two tents already pitched.
The smoke now beginning to ascend from the evening fires, the high
wooded bank beyond, up which the steep portage path could just be
discerned, and more remote still, the long stretch of waterfall now
darkening in the shadow of the overhanging forests, formed a lovely
landscape, to which the pencil of an artist could alone do justice.

This was my first encampment, and I was quite enchanted with the
novelty of everything about me.

The fires had been made of small saplings and underbrush, hastily
collected, the mildness of the weather rendering anything beyond what
sufficed for the purposes of cooking and drying the men's clothes,
superfluous. The soldiers' tent was pitched at some distance from our
own, but not too far for us to hear distinctly their laughter and
apparent enjoyment, after the fatigues of the day.

Under the careful superintendence of Corporal Kilgour, however, their
hilarity never passed the bounds of respectful propriety, and, by the
time we had eaten our suppers, cooked in the open air with the simple
apparatus of a teakettle and frying-pan, we were, one and all, ready to
retire to our rest.

The first sound that saluted our ears in the early dawn of the
following morning, was the far-reaching call of the bourgeois:

"How! how! how!" uttered at the very top of his voice.

All start at that summons, and the men are soon turning out of their
tents, or rousing from their slumbers beside the fire, and preparing
for the duties of the day.

The fire is replenished, the kettles set on to boil, the mess-baskets
opened, and a portion of their contents brought forth to be made
ready for breakfast. One Frenchman spreads our mat within the tent,
whence the bedding has all been carefully removed and packed up for
stowing in the boat. The tin cups and plates are placed around on the
new-fashioned table-cloth. The heavy dews make it a little too damp
for us to breakfast in the open air, otherwise our preparations would
be made outside, upon the green grass. In an incredibly short time
our smoking coffee and broiled ham are placed before us, to which are
added, from time to time, slices of toast brought hot and fresh from
the glowing coals.

There is, after all, no breakfast like a breakfast in the woods, with a
well-trained Frenchman for master of ceremonies.

It was a hard day's work to which the men now applied themselves, that
of dragging the heavy boat up the Chûte. It had been thought safest
to leave the piano in its place on board, but the rest of the lading
had to be carried up the steep bank, and along its summit, a distance
of some hundreds of rods, to the smooth water beyond, where all the
difficulties of our navigation terminated.

The Judge kindly took charge of me, while "the bourgeois" superintended
this important business, and with reading, sketching, and strolling
about, the morning glided away. Twelve o'clock came, and still the
preparations for starting were not yet completed.

In my rambles about to seek out some of the finest of the wild flowers
for a bouquet, before my husband's return, I came upon the camp fire
of the soldiers. A tall, red-faced, light-haired young man in fatigue
dress was attending a kettle of soup, the savoury steams of which were
very attractive.

Seeing that I was observing his occupation, he politely laded out a tin
cup full of the liquid and offered it to me.

I declined it, saying we should have our dinner immediately.

"They left me here to get their dinner," said he, apparently not
displeased to have some one to talk to; "and I thought I might as well
make some soup. Down on the German Flats, where I come from, they
always like soup."

"Ah! you are from the German Flats--then your name must be Bellinger or

"No it isn't--it's Christman."

"Well, Christman, how do you like the service?"

"Very well. I was only recruited last summer. I used to ride horse on
_the Canawl_, and as I can blow a horn first-rate, I expect I will soon
be able to play on a bugle, and then, when I get to be musician, you
know, I shall have extra pay."

I did not know it, but I expressed due pleasure at the information, and
wishing Christman all manner of success in his dreams of ambition, or
rather I should say, of avarice, for the hopes of "extra pay" evidently
preponderated over those of fame, I returned to my own quarters.

My husband, with his French tastes, was inclined to be somewhat
disappointed when I told him of this little incident, and my refusal
of Christman's soup; but we were soon gratified by seeing his tall,
awkward form bearing a kettle of the composition, which he set down
before the two gentlemen, by whom, to his infinite satisfaction, it was
pronounced excellent.

Every thing being at length in readiness, the tents were struck and
carried around the Portage, and my husband, the Judge, and I followed
at our leisure.

The woods were brilliant with wild flowers, although it was so late in
the season that the glory of the summer was well nigh past. But the
lupin, the moss-pink, and the yellow wallflower, with all the varieties
of the helianthus, the aster, and the solidago, spread their gay charms
around. The gentlemen gathered clusters of the bitter-sweet (celastrus
scandens) from the overhanging boughs to make a wreath for my hat, as
we trod the tangled pathway, which, like that of Christabelle, was

    "Now in glimmer and now in gloom,"

through the alternations of open glade and shady thicket. Soon, like
the same lovely heroine,

    "We reached the place--right glad we were,"

and without further delay, we were again on board our little boat and
skimming over the now placid waters.



Our encampment this night was the most charming that can be imagined.
Owing to the heavy service the men had gone through, in the earlier
part of the day, we took but a short stage for the afternoon, and
having pulled some seven or eight miles to a spot a short distance
below the "little Butte,"[33] we drew in at a beautiful opening among
the trees.

The soldiers now made a regular business of encamping by cutting down
a large tree for their fire, and applying themselves to the preparing
of a sufficient quantity of food for their next day's journey, a
long stretch, namely, of twenty-one miles across Winnebago Lake. Our
Frenchmen did the same. The fire caught in the light dry grass by which
we were surrounded, and soon all was blaze and crackle.

Fortunately the wind was sufficient to take the flames all in one
direction, and besides, there was not enough fuel to have made them a
subject of any alarm. We hopped upon the fallen logs, and dignified the
little circumscribed affair with the name of "a prairie on fire." The
most serious inconvenience was its having consumed all the dry grass,
some armfuls of which, spread under the bearskin in my tent, I had
found, the night before, a great improvement to my place of repose.

Our supper was truly delightful, at the pleasant sunset hour, under
the tall trees beside the waters that ran murmuring by; and when the
bright, broad moon arose, and shed her flood of light over the scene,
so wild yet so beautiful in its vast solitude, I felt that I might well
be an object of envy to the friends I had left behind.

But all things have an end, and so must at last my enthusiasm for the
beauties around me, and, albeit unwillingly, I closed my tent, and
took my place within, so near the fall of canvas that I might raise it
occasionally and peep forth upon the night.

In time all was quiet. The men had become silent, and appeared to have
retired to rest, and we were just sinking to our slumbers, when a heavy
tread and presently a bluff voice were heard outside.

"Mr. Kinzie--Mr. Kinzie!"

"Who is there? What is it?"

"I'm Christman; didn't you mean, sir, that the men should have any
liquor to-night?"

"Of course I did. Has not Kilgour given out your rations?"

"No! he says you did not say anything particular about it, and he was
not coming to ask you if you forgot it; but I thought I wouldn't be
bashful--I'd just come and ask."

"That is right. Tell Kilgour I should like to have him serve out a
ration apiece."

"Thank you, sir," in a most cheerful tone; "I'll tell him."

Christman was getting to be quite a character with us.

A row of a few miles, on the following morning, brought us to
Four-Legs' village,[H] at the entrance to Winnebago Lake, a picturesque
cluster of Indian huts, spread around on a pretty green glade, and
shaded by fine lofty trees.

[Footnote H: The site of the town of Nee-nah.]

We were now fairly in the Winnebago country, and I soon learned that
the odd-sounding name of the place was derived from the principal chief
of the nation, whose residence it was. The inhabitants were absent,
having, in all probability, departed to their wintering grounds. We
here took leave of our friend Wish-tay-yun, at the borders of whose
country we had now arrived.

"_Bon-jour, Chon!_" (John) "_Bon-jour, maman._" A hearty shake of the
hand completed his adieu, as we pushed off into the lake, and left him
smoking his kin-nee-kin-nick,[I] and waiting until the spirit should
move him to take up his long _Indian trot_ towards his home in the
Menomonee country.

[Footnote I: The bark of the red willow, scraped fine, which is
preferred by the Indians to tobacco.]

With him our sunshine seemed to have departed. The skies, hitherto so
bright and serene, became overcast, and instead of the charming voyage
we had anticipated over the silver waters of the lake, we were obliged
to keep ourselves housed under our canvas shelter, only peeping out now
and then, to catch a glimpse of the surrounding prospect through the
pouring rain.

It was what might have been expected on an autumnal day, but we were
unreasonable enough to find it tedious; so, to beguile the time and
lessen my disappointment, my husband related to me some incidents of
his early history, apropos to the subject of "Four-Legs."

While he was living at Prairie du Chien, in the employ of the American
Fur Company, the chiefs and other Indians, from the Upper Mississippi,
used frequently to come to the place to sell their furs and peltries,
and to purchase merchandise, ammunition, trinkets, &c.

[Illustration: FOUR-LEG'S VILLAGE

Entrance to Winnebago Lake (the present town of Neenah). From a sketch
by Mrs. Kinzie, in original Edition.]

As is usual with all who are not yet acclimated, he was seized with
chills and fever. One day, while suffering with an unusually severe
access of the latter, a chief of the Four-Legs family, a brother to
the one before-mentioned, came in to the Company's warehouse to trade.
There is no ceremony or restraint among the Indians, so hearing that
Shaw-nee-aw-kee was sick, Four-Legs instantly made his way to him, to
offer his sympathy and prescribe the proper remedies.

Every one who has suffered from ague and the intense fever that
succeeds it, knows how insupportable is the protracted conversation
of an inconsiderate person, and will readily believe that the longer
Four-Legs continued his pratings the higher mounted the fever of the
patient, and the more intolerable became the pain of head, back, and

At length the old man arrived at the climax of what he had to say. "It
was not good for a young man, suffering with sickness, and away from
his family, to be without a home and a wife. He had a nice daughter at
home, handsome and healthy, a capital nurse, the best hand in all the
tribe at trapping beaver and musk-rats. He was coming down again in the
spring, and he would bring her with him, and Shaw-nee-aw-kee should see
that he had told no falsehood about her. Should he go now, and bring
his daughter the next time he came?"

Stunned with his importunate babble, and anxious only for rest and
quiet, poor Shaw-nee-aw-kee eagerly assented, and the chief took his

So nearly had his disorder been aggravated to delirium, that the young
man forgot entirely, for a time, the interview and the proposal which
had been made him. But it was recalled to his memory some months
after, when Four-Legs made his appearance, bringing with him a squaw
of mature age, and a very Hecate for ugliness. She carried on her
shoulders an immense pack of furs, which, approaching with her awkward
_criss-cross_ gait, she threw at his feet, thus marking, by an Indian
custom, her sense of the relation that existed between them.

The conversation with her father now flashed across his mind, and he
began to be sensible that he had got into a position that it would
require some skill to extricate himself from.

He bade one of the young clerks take up the pack and carry it into the
magazine where the furs were stored, then he coolly went on talking
with the chief about indifferent matters.

_Miss Four-Legs_ sat awhile with a sulky, discontented air, at length
she broke out,

"Humph! he seems to take no more notice of me than if I was nobody!"

He again turned to the clerk--"Give her a calico shirt and half a dozen
bread tickets."

This did not dissipate the gloom on her countenance. Finding that he
must commence the subject, the father says,

"Well, I have brought you my daughter, according to our agreement. How
do you like her?"

"Ah! yes, she is a very nice young woman, and would make a first-rate
wife, I have no doubt. But do you know a very strange thing has
happened since you were here? Our father, Governor Cass,[J] has sent
for me to come to Detroit; that he may send me among the Wyandots and
other nations to learn their customs and manners. Now, if I go, as I
shall be obliged to do, I shall be absent two or three years--perhaps
four. What then? Why, the people will say, Shaw-nee-aw-kee has married
Four-Legs' daughter, and then has hated her and run away from her, and
so everybody will laugh at her, and she will be ashamed. It will be
better to take some good, valuable presents, blankets, guns, &c., and
to marry her to one of her own people, who will always stay by her and
take care of her."

[Footnote J: General Cass was then Governor of Michigan, and
Superintendent of the North-western Indians.]

The old man was shrewd enough to see that it was wisest to make the
best bargain he could. I have no doubt it cost a round sum to settle
the matter to the satisfaction of the injured damsel, though I have
never been able to ascertain how much. This, I know, that the young
gentleman took care not to make his next bargain while in a fit of the
ague. The lady up on the Mississippi is called, in derision, by his
name to this day.

About midway of the lake we passed Garlic Island[34]--a lovely spot,
deserving of a more attractive name. It belonged, together with
the village on the opposite shore, to "Wild Cat," a fat, jolly,
good-natured fellow, by no means the formidable animal his name would

He and his band were absent, like their neighbors of Four-Legs village,
so there was nothing to vary the monotony of our sail. It was too wet
to sing, and the men, although wrapped in their overcoats, looked like
drowned chickens. They were obliged to ply their oars with unusual
vigor to keep themselves warm and comfortable, and thus probably felt
less than we, the dullness and listlessness of the cold, rainy, October

Towards evening the sun shone forth. We had passed into the Fox River,
and were just entering that beautiful little expanse known as Butte des
Morts Lake, at the further extremity of which we were to encamp for the

The water along its shores was green with the fields of wild rice, the
gathering of which, just at this season, is an important occupation of
the Indian women. They push their canoes into the thick masses of the
rice, bend it forward over the side with their paddles, and then beat
the ripe husks off the stalks into a cloth spread in the canoe. After
this, it is rubbed to separate the grain from the husk, and fanned in
the open air. It is then put in their cordage bags and packed away for
winter use. The grain is longer and more slender than the Carolina
rice--it is of a greenish, olive color, and, although it forms a
pleasant article of food, it is far from being particularly nutritive.
The Indians are fond of it in the form of soup, with the addition of
birds or venison.[35]



The earth, the trees, and the shrubbery were all too much filled with
the heavy rain which had fallen to allow us to think of encamping, so
we made arrangements to bestow ourselves in our little saloon for the
night. It was rather a difficult matter to light a fire, but among the
underbrush, in a wild, undisturbed spot there will always be found some
fragments of dried branches, and tufts of grass which the rain has not
reached, and by the assistance of the spunk, or light-wood, with which
travellers always go well provided, a comforting fire was at length
blazing brightly.

After our chilling, tedious day, it was pleasant to gather round it, to
sit on the end of the blazing logs, and watch the Frenchmen preparing
our supper--the kettle, nestling in a little nook of bright glowing
coals--the slices of ham browning and crisping on the forked sticks,
or "broches," which the voyageurs dexterously cut, and set around the
burning brands--the savory messes of "pork and onions" hissing in the
frying pan, always a tempting regale to the hungry Frenchmen. Truly, it
needs a wet chilly journey, taken nearly fasting, as ours had been, to
enable one to enjoy to its full extent that social meal--a supper.

The bright sun, setting amid brilliant masses of clouds, such as are
seen only in our western skies, gave promise of a fine day on the
morrow, with which comforting assurance we were glad to take our leave
of him, and soon after of each other.

We had hardly roused up the following morning, in obedience to the
call of the bourgeois, when our eyes were greeted with the sight of an
addition to our company--a tall stalwart, fine-looking, young "mitiff,"
or half-breed, accompanied by two or three Indians. Vociferous and
joyous were the salutations of the latter to their "father" and their
new "mother." They were the first Winnebagoes I had seen, and they
were decidedly not the finest specimens of their tribe. The mitiff, a
scion of the wide-spreading tree of the Grignons, was the bearer of an
invitation to us from Judge Law,[36] who, with one or two Green Bay
friends, was encamped a few miles above, to come and breakfast with him
in his tent. We had not dreamed of finding white neighbors here, but
our vicinity could be no secret to them, as long as there was an Indian
in the neighborhood. So, delaying only for the soldiers to finish their
breakfast, we pushed on for the "Butte des Morts," or, as old Mrs.
Arndt always persisted in calling it, _Betty More's_.

The white tent of the Judge gleamed in the morning sun as we approached
the little rising ground on which it stood. The river was filled with
canoes paddled principally by squaws. Many Indians were to be seen
on the banks, all with their guns and hunting accoutrements, for the
air was filled in every direction with flocks of teal, which at this
season are most abundant and delicious. The immense fields of wild
rice abounding here and in the little lake below, make this vicinity
their favorite place of resort in the autumn months. The effect of this
nourishing food is, to make the flesh of the birds so fat, so white,
and so tender, that a caution is always given to a young sportsman to
fire only at such as fly very low, for if shot high in the air they are
bruised to pieces, and rendered unfit for eating by their fall to the

We were hemmed in by a little fleet of canoes which surrounded us, the
women chattering, laughing, and eagerly putting forward their little
wooden bowls of fresh cranberries as an offering of welcome to me.

I amused myself with tossing crackers to them, some of which would
reach them, others would fall into the water, and then such a
scrambling and shouting! Hands and paddles were in requisition, and
loud was the triumph of her who was successful in reaching a floating

Among the Indians with whom Shaw-nee-aw-kee was now engaged in shaking
hands, and who all seemed old friends, were some fine, straight,
well-formed figures, all of them exhibiting frames capable of enduring
fatigue and the hardships of their mode of life. One was describing
with much gesticulation the abundance of the game in the neighborhood,
and he seemed greatly delighted at receiving a quantity of ammunition,
with which he instantly departed to make good his boasts in the matter.

After walking a short distance we reached the tent, where I was
introduced to Judge Law and a pleasant little gray-haired French
gentleman of the name of Porlier.[37] Several voyageurs and half-breeds
were near, the former busily at work, the latter lounging for the
most part, and going through with what they had to do with a sort of
listless indifference.

The contrast between the "all-alive" air of the one class and the
apathetic manner of the other, was quite striking.

After a short conversation among the members of the party, breakfast
was announced, and we entered the tent and took our seats on the
ground around the Indian mat, which supplied the place of a table.

The post of honor, namely, the _head_ of the table, was of course given
to me, so that I could not only look around upon the circle of the
company, but also enjoy a fine view out of the open door of the tent,
and take an observation of all that was going on at the _side-table_
outside. Judge Doty sat opposite me, with his back to the opening
of the tent, and the other gentlemen on either hand. We had for our
waiter the tall "mitiff" who had been the messenger of the morning. He
was still in the same garb--calico shirt, bright colored scarf around
his waist, and on his head a straw hat encircled with a band of black
ostrich feathers, the usual dress of his class.

The tin cups which were to hold our coffee were duly set around,
then breakfast plates of the same metal, with knives and forks, then
followed the viands, among the most conspicuous of which was a large
tin pan of boiled ducks.

The Judge, wishing to show, probably, that although we were in the vast
wilderness, all fastidious nicety had not been left behind, took up
the plate which had been set before him, and seeing something adhering
to it which did not exactly please him, handed it over his shoulder
to Grignon, requesting him to wipe it carefully. Grignon complied by
pulling a black silk barcelona handkerchief out of his bosom, where it
had been snugly tucked away to answer any occasion that might present
itself, and giving the tin a furious polishing, handed it back again.
The Judge looked at it with a smile of approbation, and giving a glance
round the table as much as to say, "You see how I choose to have things
done," applied himself to his breakfast.

The trail for Fort Winnebago then led from the shore opposite Butte des
Morts, through _Ma-zhee-gaw-gaw_ swamp, and past Green Lake, and it
was well for the Judge that his horses stood waiting for him to "mount
and away" as early as possible after breakfast, or I am afraid the
story I should have been tempted to tell, would have made his ride an
uncomfortable one throughout the day.

We had hardly finished breakfast when our hunter, who had received the
ammunition, returned, bringing with him about fifty fine ducks, which
he had shot in little more than an hour. From that time until the close
of our journey, our supply of these delicate birds was never wanting.



The Butte des Morts, or Hillock of the Dead, was the scene long
since[K] of a most sanguinary battle between the French and the
Mis-qua-kees, or Foxes. So great was the carnage in this engagement,
that the memory of it has been perpetuated by the gloomy appellation
given to the mound where the dead were buried. The Foxes up to this
time had inhabited the shores of the river to which they had given
their name, but being completely overwhelmed and beaten in this
conflict, they retired to the neighborhood of the Mississippi, and
sought an asylum among their allies, the Saukies, or as they are now
called, the Sauks, with whom they became gradually incorporated, until
the combined tribes came to be known, as at present, by the name of
"Sauks and Foxes."[38]

[Footnote K: In the year 1714.]

Among the French inhabitants of the upper country, each tribe of
Indians has a particular appellation, descriptive of some peculiarity
of either their habits or their personal appearance. Thus the Chippewas
from their agility are denominated "Sauteurs" or Jumpers; the Ottawas,
the "Courtes-oreilles" or Short-ears. The Menomonees, from the wild
rice so abundant in their country, are called the "Folles Avoines"--the
Winnebagoes, from their custom of wearing the fur of a pole-cat on
their legs when equipped for war, are termed "les Puans"'[39]--the
Pottowattamies, from their uncleanly habits, "les Poux"--the Foxes,
are "les Renards," &c., &c.

Hence you will never hear a French or half-breed resident of the
country mention an Indian in any other style. "Such a person is a
'Court-oreille.'" "Is that woman a 'Winnebago?'" "No, she is a 'Folle
Avoine.'" In this manner a stranger is somewhat puzzled at first to
classify the acquaintances he forms.

All the native friends with whom we were here surrounded were
"les Puans," or to use their own euphonious application, the

Having with great regret said adieu to our friend Judge Doty, whose
society had contributed so much to the pleasure of our trip, and whose
example, moreover, had given us a valuable lesson to take things as we
find them, we bade good-bye at an early hour after breakfast to our
kind hosts, and set forward on our journey.

From Butte des Morts to the Portage, the distance by land is about
seventy miles; by water, it is not less than a hundred and thirty, so
serpentine is the course of the river through the low swampy prairies
which stretch over a great portion of this part of the country.

About six miles above the Butte, a tolerably broad stream called Wolf
River joins the Fox, and as it is much the more direct and promising
of the two, strangers have sometimes mistaken it for the main stream,
and journeyed up it a considerable distance before discovering to their
great chagrin that they must retrace their steps.

Beyond this place, the river begins to play its pranks with the
compass. As I was always looking out for pretty scenery to sketch,
I was at one spot much attracted by a picturesque group on a bank
quite close to the stream. There were broad overhanging trees, and
two or three wigwams nestled under their shade. Bright-looking
little children, quite unencumbered with clothing, were sporting
about, and their two mothers were sitting on the ground, engaged in
the manufacture of a mat for their lodge. It was a pretty scene, and
I commenced a sketch. As usual, the whole party on the bank set up
a shout when they recognized Shaw-nee-aw-kee--"Ee-awn-chee-wee-rah,
Hee-nee-kar-ray-kay-noo,"[L] It was an occasion on which they became
demonstrative. After a little time we proceeded, and I went on to
complete my drawing. The sun kept coming more and more into the wrong
place. He had been just behind me, presently he was on my left hand,
now he was straight ahead. I moved from time to time; at length the sun
was decidedly on my right hand. What could be the matter? I looked up.
"Oh, here is a pretty scene, I must have this too! But how surprisingly
like the one I have just finished, only in a different direction."
Again we were greeted with shouts and laughter; it was the same spot
which we had passed not an hour before, and having taken a circuit of
nearly four miles, we had returned to find that we had made an actual
progress of only the width of the bank on which the trees and wigwams
stood. Decidedly not very encouraging to an impatient traveller.

[Footnote L: Father! How do you do?]

We reached Lake Puckaway late in the evening of our second day from
Butte des Morts. Here lived a white man named Gleason, the same of
whom, owing to his vast powers of exaggeration, poor Hooe[40] was fond
of uttering his little pun, "All is not gold that Gleasons." We did not
seek shelter at his house, for late as the season was, we found the
shore so infested with musquitoes that we were glad to choose a spot as
far as possible from the bank, and make ourselves comfortable in our

This lake has its name from the long flags or rushes which are found
in its waters in great abundance, and of which the squaws manufacture
the coarse matting used in covering their wigwams. Their mode of
fabricating this is very primitive and simple. Seated on the ground,
with the rushes laid side by side, and fastened at each extremity,
they pass their shuttle, a long flat needle made of bone, to which is
attached a piece of cordage, formed of the bark of a tree, through each
rush, thus confining it very closely, and making a fine substantial
mat. These mats are seldom more than five or six feet in length, as a
greater size would be inconvenient in adjusting and preparing their

It is a species of labor usually assigned to the elder women of the
family. When they become broken down and worn out with exposure and
hardship, so that they cannot cut down trees, hoe corn, or carry heavy
burdens, they are set to weaving mats, taking care of the children, and
disciplining the dogs, with which every Indian lodge abounds.

Lac de Bœuf, or Buffalo Lake, into which our course next brought us,
is a lovely sheet of water. In some places its banks are exceedingly
picturesque, with beautiful headlands jutting out into the clear
depths, where they and the magnificent groups of trees which crown them
lie reflected as in a mirror. Now and then we would catch a glimpse of
deer darting across the glades, which at intervals opened through the
woodlands, or a pair of sand-hill cranes would rise, slowly flapping
their wings, and seek a place of more undisturbed repose. The flocks of
teal now skimming the surface of the water, now rising higher towards
the shelter of the forests, tempted our sportsman sorely; but as there
was little prospect of finding his game when it was brought down, he
did not give way to the wanton pleasure of shooting merely to destroy

In quitting this charming lake, and again entering the narrow, tortuous
course of the river, we bade adieu to everything like scenery, until we
should reach our journey's end.

We had now seventy miles to pass through a country perfectly monotonous
and uninteresting, the distastefulness of which was aggravated by the
knowledge that we could, had we been provided with horses or a carriage
of any kind, have crossed over to the Portage from Gleason's, through
a pleasant country, in little more than three hours. Even our great
resource, the cheering, animating songs of our voyageurs were out of
the question; for the river, though deep, is so narrow that, in many
places, there is no room for the regular play of the oars; and the
voices of Frenchmen can never "keep tune" unless their oars can "keep
time." Lapierre, one of our men, did his best with a paddle, or, as
he called it, the "_little row_," but it was to no purpose--it _would
not go_. Besides this, the wild rice abounds to that extent in many
places, that it almost completely obstructs the progress of even a
moderate-sized boat, so that a passage through its tangled masses is
with difficulty forced by the oars. Tedious and monotonous as was the
whole course of the two following days, the climax of impatience and
discouragement was only reached when we arrived in sight of the white
walls of Fort Winnebago, looking down from a rising ground upon the
vast expanse of low land through which the river winds.

[Illustration: FORT WINNEBAGO IN 1831.

From a sketch by Mrs. Kinzie, in original edition.]

The Indians have a tradition that a vast serpent once lived in the
waters of the Mississippi, and that taking a freak to visit the Great
Lakes, he left his trail through the prairies, which, collecting the
waters from the meadows and the rains of heaven as they fell, at length
became the Fox River.

The little lakes along its course were probably the spots where he
flourished about in his uneasy slumbers at night. He must have played
all the antics of a kitten in the neighborhood of the Portage. When the
Fort was first pointed out to me, I exclaimed with delight, "Oh, we
shall be there in half an hour!"

"Not quite so soon," said my husband, smiling. "Wait and see." We
sat and watched. We seemed approaching the very spot where we were
to disembark. We could distinguish the officers and a lady on the
bank waiting to receive us. Now we are turning our back on them, and
shooting out into the prairie again. Anon we approach another bank,
on which is a range of comfortable-looking log-houses. "That is the
Agency,--the largest house belongs to Paquette, the interpreter,[41]
and the others are the dwellings of our Frenchmen. The little building,
just at the foot of the hill, is the blacksmith's shop, kept there by
the Government, that the Indians may have their guns and traps mended
free of expense."

"But are we going to stop there?"

"No; do you not see we are going back to the fort?"

And, to be sure, our course was now turned, and we were setting in our
first direction. In this manner, after tacking to the right and left,
and putting backwards and forwards during the greater part of two
hours, we at length reached the little landing, on which the assembled
party stood ready to greet us.



Major and Mrs. Twiggs, and a few of the younger officers (for nearly
all of the older ones were absent), with our brother Robert, or, as he
is called throughout all the Indian tribes, "Bob," gave us a cordial
welcome--how cordial those alone can know who have come, like us, to
a remote, isolated home in the wilderness. The Major insisted on our
taking possession at once of vacant quarters in the fort, instead of at
"the Agency," as had been proposed.

"No--we must be under the same roof with them. Mrs. Twiggs had been
without a companion of her own sex for more than four months, and would
certainly not hear of a separation now. But we must be their guests
until the arrival of the boats containing our furniture," which, under
the care of our old acquaintance, Hamilton Arndt, was making its way
slowly up from Green Bay.

A dinner had been prepared for us. This is one of the advantages of the
zig-zag approach by the Fox River--travellers never take their friends
by surprise--and when the whole circle sat down to the hospitable
board, we were indeed a merry company.

After dinner Mrs. Twiggs showed me the quarters assigned to us, on the
opposite side of the spacious hall. They consisted of two large rooms
on each of the three floors or stories of the building. On the ground
floor the front room was vacant. The one in the rear was to be the
sleeping apartment, as was evident from a huge, unwieldy bedstead,
of proportions amply sufficient to have accommodated Og, the King of
Bashan, with Mrs. Og and the children into the bargain. We could not
repress our laughter, but the bedstead was nothing to another structure
which occupied a second corner of the apartment.

This edifice had been built under the immediate superintendence of
one of our young lieutenants, and it was plain to be seen that upon
it both he and the soldiers who fabricated it had exhausted all their
architectural skill. The timbers of which it was composed had been
grooved and carved; the pillars that supported the front swelled in and
out in a most fanciful manner; the doors were not only panelled, but
radiated in a way to excite the admiration of all unsophisticated eyes.
A similar piece of workmanship had been erected in each set of quarters
to supply the deficiency of closets, an inconvenience which had never
occurred, until too late, to the bachelors who planned them. The three
apartments of which each structure was composed, were unquestionably
designed for clothes-press, store-room, and china-closet; such, at
least, were the uses to which Mrs. Twiggs had appropriated the one
assigned to her. There was this slight difficulty, that in the latter
the shelves were too close to admit of setting in even a gravy-boat,
but they made up in number what was wanting in space. We christened the
whole affair, in honor of its projector, a "Davis;" thus placing the
first laurel on the brow of one who was afterwards to signalize himself
at Buena Vista, and in the Cabinet of his country.[42]

The bold promontory on which Fort Winnebago was built looked down upon
the extended prairie and the Fox River on one side, and on the other
stretched away into the thickly wooded ridge that led off to Belle
Fontaine and Lake Puckaway.

In front lay an extent of meadow, across which was the Portage road, of
about two miles in length, leading between the Fox and the Wisconsin
rivers. Teams of oxen and a driver were kept at the Agency by the
Government, to transport the canoes of the Indians across this place,
which at many seasons was wet, miry, and almost impassable.[43]

The woods were now brilliant with the many tints of autumn, and the
scene around was further enlivened by groups of Indians, in all
directions, and their lodges, which were scattered here and there, in
the vicinity of the Agency buildings. On the low grounds might be seen
the white tents of the traders, already prepared to furnish winter
supplies to the Indians, in exchange for the annuity money they were
about to receive.

A great concourse had been for many days assembling in anticipation
of the payment, which was expected to take place as soon as
Shaw-nee-aw-kee should arrive with the silver.

Preparatory to this event, the great chief of the nation, Four-Legs,
whose village we had passed at the entrance to Winnebago Lake, had
thought proper to take a little carouse, as is too apt to be the
custom when the savages come into the neighborhood of a sutler's
establishment. In the present instance, the facilities for a season of
intoxication had been augmented by the presence on the ground of some
traders, too regardless of the very stringent laws prohibiting the sale
of liquor to the Indians.

Poor Four-Legs could not stand this full tide of prosperity. Unchecked
by the presence of his "father," the agent, he carried his indulgence
to such excess that he fell a victim in the course of a few days. His
funeral had been celebrated with unusual pomp the day before our
arrival, and great was my disappointment at finding myself too late to
witness all the ceremonies.

His body, according to their custom, having been wrapped in a blanket,
and placed in a rude coffin, along with his guns, tomahawk, pipes, and
a quantity of tobacco, had been carried to the most elevated point of
the hill opposite the fort, followed by an immense procession of his
people, whooping, beating their drums, howling, and making altogether
what is emphatically termed a "_pow-wow_."

After the interment of the body a stake was planted at its head, on
which was painted in vermilion a series of hieroglyphics, descriptive
of the great deeds and events of his life. The whole was then
surrounded with pickets of the trunks of the tamarack trees, and hither
the friends would come for many successive days to renew the expression
of their grief, and to throw over the grave tobacco and other offerings
to the Great Spirit.

It was a consolation to find that, although delayed, we were yet in
time to furnish a quantity of white cotton for a flag to wave over
the grave, and also to pay a considerable bill at the sutler's, for
the different articles that had been found necessary for the funeral
parade--it being a duty expected of their father to bury the dead

The funeral observances in honor of the chief had not yet ceased.
Throughout the day, and all that night, the sound of instruments,
mingled with doleful lamentations, and with the discordant whoops and
yells of those in a partial state of intoxication, filled the air, and
disturbed our repose. To these were added occasionally the plaintive
sounds of the Indian flute, upon which the young savage plays when he
is in love. Grief and whiskey had made their hearts tender, and the
woods resounded to their melancholy strains.

Early the following morning, before I left my room, I was startled
by the sounds of lamentation and woe proceeding from the adjoining
apartment. On entering it, I found several squaws seated on the floor,
with downcast looks expressive of condolence and sympathy, while
in their midst sat a little ugly woman, in tattered garments, with
blackened face and dishevelled hair, sobbing and wailing bitterly.

Not doubting they were the family of the deceased chief, I was quite
troubled at my inability to express, otherwise than by gestures, my
participation in their sorrows.

Unacquainted as I was with their customs, I took it for granted from
their wretched appearance that poverty and destitution formed one of
the sources of their affliction. One of the party, at least, seemed
in the very depths of misery. "Can it be possible," said I to myself,
"that this poor creature has only these scanty rags to cover her?"

Stepping back to my own room, I brought out a pretty calico wrapper,
which I presented to the little dirty, blackened object. She took it,
and commenced a fresh series of sobbing and sighing. I made signs to
her to put it on, opening it and explaining to her how it was to be
worn, and recommending to her, by gestures, to lose no time in making
herself more comfortable.

At this, the other women burst into a laugh.

"Very mal-à-propos," thought I, "and somewhat unfeeling." At that
moment my husband entering, explained to me that the chief mourner was
Madame Four-Legs, the widow; that she had undoubtedly a comfortable
wardrobe at home, but that it was part of the etiquette of mourning
to go for a season with neglected persons and blackened faces. All
this was told me in the intervals of shaking hands, and offering and
receiving condolences in the most uncouth, guttural language I had ever
heard. Their "father" at length dismissed them, with a promise of some
presents to help dry up their tears. It must not be inferred that the
grief of the poor little widow was not sincere. On the contrary, she
was greatly attached to her husband, and had had great influence not
only with him but with the nation at large. She was a Fox woman, and
spoke the Chippewa, which is the court language among all the tribes,
so that she was often called upon to act as interpreter, and had, in
fact, been in the habit of accompanying her husband, and assisting
him by her counsels upon all occasions. She was a person of great
shrewdness and judgment, and as I afterwards experienced, of strong and
tenacious affections.

After breakfast I received a visit from the principal chiefs, who had
put on their best of apparel and paint, to receive their new "mother."

There was Naw-kaw, or Kar-ray-mau-nee, "the Walking Rain," now
the principal chief of the nation, a stalwart Indian, with a
broad, pleasant countenance, the great peculiarity of which was an
immense under lip, hanging nearly to his chin. There was the old
Day-kau-ray,[44] the most noble, dignified, and venerable of his own,
or indeed of any other, tribe. His fine Roman countenance, rendered
still more striking by his bald head, with one solitary tuft of long
silvery hair neatly tied and falling back on his shoulders; his
perfectly neat, appropriate dress, almost without ornament, and his
courteous demeanor, never laid aside, under any circumstances, all
combined to give him the highest place in the consideration of all who
knew him. It will hereafter be seen that his traits of character were
not less grand and striking, than were his personal appearance and

There was Black-Wolf, whose lowering, surly face was well described
by his name. The fierce expression of his countenance was greatly
heightened by the masses of heavy black hair hanging round it, quite
contrary to the usual fashion among the Winnebagoes. They, for the most
part, remove a portion of their hair, the remainder of which is drawn
to the back of the head, clubbed and ornamented with beads, ribbons,
cock's feathers, or, if they are so entitled, an eagle's feather for
every scalp taken from an enemy.

There was _Talk-English_, a remarkably handsome, powerful young Indian,
who received his name in the following manner. He was one of a party of
sixteen Winnebagoes, who had, by invitation accompanied their Agent and
Major Forsyth[45] (or the Chippewa as he was called), on a visit to the
President at Washington, the year previous.

On the journey, the question naturally addressed to them by people not
familiar with Western Indians was,

"Do you talk English?"

The young fellow being very observant, came to his "father." "What do
they mean by this? Everybody says to me, _talk English!_"

The Agent interpreted the words to him. "Ah, very well."

The next place they arrived at was Lockport, in the State of New York.
Jumping off the canal-boat upon the lock, he ran up to the first man he
met, and thrusting forward his face cried out, "Talk Eengeesh?"

"Yes," said the man; "do you talk English?"



From photograph in possession of Wisconsin Historical Society.]

From that time forward, he always bore the name of _Talk-English_, and
was registered on the pay-rolls by a title of which he was not a little

Hoo-wau-ne-kah, "the Little Elk," was another of the distinguished
men of the tribe. He had likewise been at Washington. Henry Clay,
when he visited them, after looking carefully at the countenances and
bearing of all the members of the deputation, had indicated him as the
one possessing the greatest talent; and he was greatly pleased when
informed that he was the principal orator of the nation, and decidedly
superior in abilities to any other individual of the tribe.

Wild-Cat, our Indian Falstaff, in all save the cowardice and falsehood,
I have already mentioned.

Then there was Kau-ray-kaw-saw-kaw, "the White Crow," or Rock River
Indian, who afterwards distinguished himself as the friend of the
whites during the Sauk war. He was called by the French "le Borgne,"
from having lost an eye; and the black silk handkerchief, which he wore
drooping over the left side of his face to disguise the blemish, taken
with his native costume, gave him a very singular appearance.[46]

There was a nephew of the defunct chief Four-Legs, to whom was with
justice given, by both whites and Indians, the appellation of "the
Dandy."[47] When out of mourning his dress was of the most studied and
fanciful character. A shirt (when he condescended to wear any) of the
brightest colors, ornamented with innumerable rows of silver brooches,
set thickly together; never less than two pairs of silver arm-bands;
leggings and moccasins of the most elaborate embroidery in ribbons
and porcupine quills; everything that he could devise in the shape of
ornament hanging to his club of hair behind; a feather fan in one
hand, and a mirror in the other, in which he contemplated himself every
five minutes; these, with the variety and brilliancy of the colors
upon his face, the suitable choice and application of which occupied
no small portion of the hours allotted to his toilet; such made up the
equipment of young Four-Legs.

This devotion to dress and appearance seemed not altogether out of
place in a youthful dandy, but we had likewise an old one of the same
stamp. Pawnee Blanc, or the White Pawnee, if possible surpassed his
younger competitor in attention to his personal attractions.

Upon the present occasion he appeared in all his finery, and went
through the customary salutations with an air of solemn dignity,
then entered, as did the others, into the parlor (for I had received
them in the hall), where they all seated themselves upon the floor.
Fortunately, the room was now bare of furniture, but "alas!" thought I,
"for my pretty carpet, if this is to be the way they pay their respects
to me!" I watched the falling of the ashes from their long pipes, and
the other inconveniences of the use of tobacco, or "kin-ni-kin-nick,"
with absolute dismay.

The visit of the chiefs was succeeded by one from the interpreter and
his wife, with all the Canadian and half-breed women, whose husbands
found employment at the Agency, or at the American Fur Company's

By this time my piano had been taken from its case and set up in our
quarters. To our great joy, we found it entirely uninjured. Thanks to
the skill of Nunns and Clark, not a note was out of tune.

The women, to whom it was an entire novelty, were loud in their
exclamations of wonder and delight.

"_Eh-h-h! regardez done! Quelles inventions! Quelles merveilles!_"[M]

[Footnote M: Only look! what inventions! what wonders!]

One, observing the play of my fingers reflected in the nameboard,
called in great exultation to her companions. She had discovered, as
she thought, the hidden machinery by which the sounds were produced,
and was not a little mortified when she was undeceived.



As the boats might be expected in a few days, it was thought best to
begin at once what preparations were in my power towards housekeeping.
These were simply the fitting and sewing of my carpets, in which
I was kindly assisted by Mrs. Twiggs; and the wife of one of our
Frenchmen having come over from the Agency, and made everything tidy
and comfortable, the carpets were soon tacked down, and ready for the
reception of the rest of the furniture.

I had made many fruitless attempts, both in Detroit and Green Bay, to
procure a servant-woman to accompany me to my new home. Sometimes one
would present herself, but, before we could come to a final agreement,
the thoughts of the distance, of the savages, the hardships of the
journey, or, perhaps, the objections of friends, would interfere to
break off the negotiation; so that I had at length been obliged to rest
satisfied with the simple hope held out by my husband, that one or the
other of his French employés, with his wife, would be contented to take
up their abode with us.

In this state of things, all difficulties seemed to be obviated by the
proposal of Major Twiggs, that we should take into our service a young
colored girl, whom he had brought from Buffalo, in the spring, to wait
on Mrs. T. until her own servants should arrive from the South.

Louisa was accordingly sent for, an uncommonly handsome young negress,
with an intelligent but very demure countenance, who called herself
fifteen years of age, but who, from the progress in vice and iniquity I
afterwards discovered her to have made, must have been at least several
years older. Be that as it may, she now seemed to have no fault but
carelessness and inexperience, of both of which I had great hopes she
would improve, under careful training.

My first week's visit with Mrs. Twiggs had just expired when word
was given that the boats were in sight--the boats that contained our
furniture--and the expected arrival of Louis Philippe to visit Queen
Victoria could scarcely have created a more universal sensation,
than did this announcement in our little community. Although we knew
that some hours must yet elapse before they could reach the spot for
disembarkation, we were constantly on the watch, and at length all the
young officers, followed by as many of the soldiers as were off duty,
accompanied Mr. Kinzie down the bank to the landing, to witness, and if
necessary, to assist in helping everything safe to land.

Sad was the plight in which matters were found. The water poured out of
the corners of the boxes as they were successively hoisted on shore.
Too impatient to wait until they could be carried up to the fort, the
gentlemen soon furnished themselves with hammers and hatchets, and fell
eagerly to work, opening the boxes to explore the extent of the damage.
Alas for the mahogany! not a piece from which the edges and veneering
were not starting. It had all the appearance of having lain under the
Grande Chûte for days. Poor Hamilton was loud in his protestations and

It was the fault of the men, of the weather, of the way the things
were packed. "Confound it! he had taken the best care of the things he
possibly could--better than he had ever taken before--it _would_ get

There was nothing but to be patient and make the best of it. And when
the pretty sideboard and work-table had been thoroughly rubbed and set
up, and all the little knickknacks arranged on the mantel-piece--when
the white curtains were hung at the windows, and the chairs and
dining-table each in its proper place in relation to the piano, our
parlor was pronounced "magnificent." At least so seemed to think
Hamilton, who came to give one admiring look, and to hear the music of
the piano, which was a perfect novelty to him. His description of it to
the young officers, after his return to the Bay, was expressive of his
admiration and wonder--"There it stood on its four legs! Anybody might
go up and touch it!"

In due time the dinner and tea sets were carefully bestowed in the
"Davis," together with sundry jars of sweetmeats that I had prepared
in Detroit; the iron and tin utensils were placed in a neat cupboard
in the kitchen, of which my piano-box supplied the frame; the barrel
of eggs and tubs of butter, brought all the way from Ohio, were
ranged in the store-room; a suitable quantity of salt pork and flour,
purchased from the Commissary; and there being no lack of game of
every description, the offering of our red children, we were ready to
commence housekeeping.

The first dinner in her own home is an era in the life of a young
housekeeper. I shall certainly never forget mine. While I was in the
lower regions superintending my very inexpert little cook, my husband
made his appearance to say that, as the payment (then the all-absorbing
topic of interest) would not commence until afternoon, he had invited
M. Rolette, Mr. Hempstead,[48] and four other gentlemen to dine with us.

"So unexpected--so unprepared for!"

"Never mind; give them anything you have. They have been living for
some days in tents, and anything will taste well to them."

My dinner had been intended to consist chiefly of a venison pasty, and
fortunately the only dish among my store was of very large proportions,
so that there was already smoking in the oven a pie of a size nearly
equal to the famous Norwich pudding; thus, with some trifling additions
to the bill of fare, we made out very well, and the master of the
house had the satisfaction of hearing the impromptu dinner very much
commended by his six guests.



There were two divisions of the Winnebago Indians, one of which was
paid by the Agent, at the Portage, the other at Prairie du Chien, by
Gen. Street.[49] The first, between four and five thousand in number,
received, according to treaty stipulations, fifteen thousand dollars
annually, besides a considerable amount of presents, and a certain
number of rations of bread and pork, to be issued in times of emergency
throughout the year.

The principal villages of this division of the tribe were at Lake
Winnebago, Green and Fox Lakes, the Barribault, Mud Lake, the Four
Lakes, Kosh-ko-nong, and Turtle Creek. Messengers were dispatched,
at or before the arrival of the annuity-money, to all the different
villages, to notify the heads of families or lodges to assemble at "the

When arrived, the masters of families, under their different chiefs,
give in their names, and the number in their lodges, to be registered.
As in paying a certain sum of money is apportioned to each individual,
it is, of course, an object to make the number registered as great as
possible. Each one brings his little bundle of sticks, and presents
it to the Agent to register. Sometimes a dialogue like the following

"How many have you in your lodge?"

The Indian carefully, and with great ceremony, counts his bundle of
sticks. "Fifteen."

"How many men?"

"Two." The Agent lays aside two sticks.

"How many women?"

"Three." Three more sticks are separated.

"How many children?"

"Eight." Eight sticks are added to the heap.

"What is the meaning of these two sticks that remain?"

The culprit, whose arithmetic has not served him to carry out his
deception, disappears amid the shouts and jeers of his companions, who
are always well pleased at the detection of any roguery in which they
have had no share.

The young officers generally assisted in counting out and delivering
the money at these payments, and it was no unusual thing, as the last
band came up, for the chiefs to take a quantity of silver out of the
box, and request their "father" to pay his friends for their trouble,
seeming really disturbed at his refusal. In this, as in almost every
instance, we see the native courtesy and politeness, which are never
lost sight of among them. If a party comes to their "father," to beg
for provisions, and food is offered them, however hungry they may
be, each waits patiently until one of the company makes an equal
distribution of the whole, and then, taking his share, eats it quietly,
with the greatest moderation. I never saw this rule violated, save in
one instance.

Our friend. Pawnee Blanc, _the Old Dandy_, once came with a party of
Indians, requesting permission to dance for us, in the open space
before the door. It was a warm, dusty afternoon, and as our friends
grew heated and fatigued with the violent and long-continued exercise,
a pitcher of raspberry negus was prepared and sent out to them. Pawnee
received the pitcher and tumbler, and pouring the latter about half
full, gave it to the first of the circle, then filled the same for the
next, and so on, until it suddenly occurred to him to look into the
pitcher. What he saw there determined his course of action, so, setting
the tumbler upon the ground, he raised the pitcher with both hands to
his lips and gave a hearty pull, after which he went on, giving less
and less, until he was called to have the pitcher replenished. All
present agreed it was the only instance they had ever witnessed, of an
Indian's appearing afraid of getting less of a thing than his share.

During the payment a good many kegs of whiskey find their way into
the lodges of the Indians, notwithstanding the watchfulness of both
officers and Agent. Where there is a demand there will always be a
supply, let the legal prohibitions be what they may. The last day of
the payment is, too often, one of general carousing.

When the men begin their _frolic_, the women carefully gather all the
guns, knives, tomahawks, and weapons of every description, and secrete
them, that as little mischief as possible may be done in the absence of
all restraint and reason. I am sorry to record that our little friend,
Pawnee Blanc, was greatly addicted to the pleasures of the bottle.

Among the presents for the chiefs, which Shaw-nee-aw-kee had brought
from the east, was a trunk of blue cloth coats, trimmed with broad
gold lace, and a box of round black hats, ornamented in a similar
manner. All who are familiar with Indians, of whatever tribe, will
have observed that their first step towards civilization, whether
in man or woman, is mounting a man's hat, decorated with tinsel,
ribbons, or feathers. Pawnee was among the happy number remembered in
the distribution, so donning at once his new costume, and tying a few
additional bunches of gay-colored ribbons to a long spear, that was
always his baton of ceremony, he came at once, followed by an admiring
train, chiefly of women, to pay me a visit of state.

The solemn gravity of his countenance, as he motioned away those who
would approach too near, and finger his newly-received finery--the
dignity with which he strutted along, edging this way and that
to avoid any possible contact from homely, e very-day wardrobes,
augured well for a continuance of propriety and self-respect, and a
due consideration of the good opinion of all around. But, alas, for
Pawnee! Late in the day we saw him assisted towards his lodge by two
stout young Indians, who had pulled him out of a ditch, his fine coat
covered with mud, his hat battered and bruised, his spear shorn of its
gay streamers, and poor Pawnee, himself, weeping and uttering all the
doleful lamentations of a tipsy Indian.

       *       *       *       *       *

Among the women with whom I early made acquaintance was the wife of
Wau-kaun-zee-kah, _the Yellow Thunder_.[50] She had accompanied her
husband, who was one of the deputation to visit the President, and from
that time forth she had been known as "the Washington woman." She had
a pleasant, old-acquaintance sort of air in greeting me, as much as
to say, "You and I have seen something of the world." No expression
of surprise or admiration escaped her lips, as her companions, with
child-like, laughing simplicity, exclaimed and clapped their hands at
the different wonderful objects I showed them. Her deportment said
plainly, "Yes, yes, my children, I have seen all these things before."
It was not until I put to her ear some tropical shells, of which I
had a little cabinet, and she heard it roaring in her ear, that she
laid aside her apathy of manner. She poked her finger into the opening
to get at the animal within, shook it violently, then put it to her
ear again, and finally burst into a hearty laugh, and laid it down,
acknowledging, by her looks, that this was beyond her comprehension.

I had one shell of peculiar beauty--my favorite in the whole
collection--a small conch, covered with rich, dark veins. Each of the
visitors successively took up this shell, and by words and gestures
expressed her admiration, evidently showing that she had an eye for
beauty--this was on the occasion of the parting visit of my red

Shortly after the payment had been completed, and the Indians had left,
I discovered that my valued shell was missing from the collection.
Could it be that one of the squaws had stolen it? It was possible--they
would occasionally, though rarely, do such things under the influence
of strong temptation. I tried to recollect which, among the party,
looked most likely to have been the culprit. It could not have been the
Washington woman--she was partly civilized, and knew better.

A few weeks afterwards Mrs. _Yellow Thunder_ again made her appearance,
and carefully unfolding a gay-colored chintz shawl, which she carried
rolled up in her hand, she produced the shell, and laid it on the
table before me. I did not know whether to show, by my countenance,
displeasure at the trick she had played me, or joy at receiving my
treasure back again, but at length decided that it was the best policy
to manifest no emotion whatever.

She prolonged her visit until my husband's return, and he then
questioned her about the matter.

"She had taken the shell to her village, to show to some of her people,
who did not come to the payment."

"Why had she not asked her mother's leave before carrying it away?"

"Because she saw that her mother liked the shell, and she was afraid
she would say--No."

This was not the first instance in which Madame Washington had
displayed the shrewdness which was a predominant trait in her
character. During the visit of the Indians to the eastern cities, they
were taken to various exhibitions, museums, menageries, the theatre,
&c. It did not escape their observation that some silver was always
paid before entrance, and they inquired the reason. It was explained to
them. The woman brightened up, as if struck with an idea.

"How much do you pay for each one?"

Her father told her.

"How do you say that in English?"

"Two shillings."

"_Two shinnin--humph_" (good).

The next day, when as usual, visitors began to flock to the rooms
where the Indians were sojourning, the woman and a young Indian, her
confederate, took their station by the door, which they kept closed.
When any one knocked, the door was cautiously opened, and the woman
extending her hand, exclaimed--"_Two shinnin._"

This was readily paid in each instance, and the game went on, until
she had accumulated a considerable sum. But this did not satisfy her.
At the first attempt of a visitor to leave the room, the door was held
close, as before, the hand was extended, and "_Two shinnin_" again
met his ear. He tried to explain that, having paid for his entrance,
he must now go out free. With an inexorable shake of the head, "_Two
shinnin_," was all the English she could understand.

The Agent who had entered a short time before, and who, overhearing
the dialogue, sat laughing behind his newspaper, waiting to see how
it would all end, now came forward and interfered, and the guests were
permitted to go forth without a further contribution.

The good woman was moreover admonished that it was far from the custom
of white people to tax their friends and visitors in this manner, and
that the practice must be laid aside in future.

Another instance of the disposition of the Indians to avail themselves
of all the goods that fortune throws in their way, was the following:

Upon the same trip, while passing through Ohio, one of the party
inquired of the Agent,

"Do you pay for all those provisions that are set before us at the

"Yes, why do you ask?"

"Nothing: I thought you perhaps paid for just what we ate of them."

At the next stopping place a fine breakfast was set upon the table, of
which, as usual, they partook plentifully. Just as they had finished,
the horn sounded for all to take their places in the stage-coaches.
Each sprang to his feet. One seized the plates of biscuits and poured
them into the corner of his blanket; another the remains of a pair of
chickens; a third emptied the sugar-bowls; each laid hold of what was
nearest him, and in a trice nothing was left upon the table but the
empty plates and dishes. The landlord and waiters, meanwhile, stood
laughing and enjoying the trick as much as any of the spectators.

Upon another occasion, their "father" had endeavored to impress upon
them the unseemliness of throwing their refuse pieces, bones, and
fragments of food about on the table-cloth, pointing out to them the
orderly manner of the whites at table, and the propriety of keeping
everything neat and nice around them.

At their next meal, they were served first with a chicken-pie, of which
they ate very heartily, and the accumulation of bones on their plates
was very abundant. Presently another and more favorite dish appeared.
A fine large roasted turkey. A gentleman sat near, and was evidently
preparing to carve it. No time was to be lost. What was to be done with
the bones? They looked around in some perplexity. A large apple-pie was
standing near. The most eager drew it towards him, and quick as thought
all the bones were deposited upon it, while with a triumphant laugh at
the happy idea, he coolly transferred the bird to his own dish, and
proceeded to distribute it among his companions. The amazed stranger
soon joined in the laugh at the unceremonious manner in which his share
of the dinner had vanished.



The payment was now over, and the Indians had dispersed and gone to
their wintering grounds. The traders too, had departed, laden with
a good share of the silver, in exchange for which each family had
provided itself, as far as possible, with clothing, guns, traps,
ammunition, and the other necessaries for their winter use. The
Indians are good at a bargain. They are not easily overreached. On
the contrary, they understand at once when a charge is exorbitant;
and a trader who tries his shrewdness upon them is sure to receive an
expressive _sobriquet_, which ever after clings to him.

For instance, M. Rolette was called by them "Ah-kay-zaup-ee-tah," _five
more_--because, as they said, let them offer what number of skins they
might, in bartering for an article, his terms were invariably "five

Upon one occasion a lady remarked to him, "Oh, M. Rolette, I would not
be engaged in the Indian trade; it seems to me a system of cheating the
poor Indians."

"Let me tell you, madame," replied he with great _naiveté_, "it is not
so easy a thing to cheat the Indians as you imagine. I have tried it
these twenty years, and have never succeeded!"

       *       *       *       *       *

We were now settled down to a quiet, domestic life. The military system
under which everything was conducted--the bugle-call, followed by the
music of a very good band, at "réveille;" the light, animated strains
for "sick-call," and soon after for "breakfast;" the longer ceremony of
guard-mounting; the "Old English Roast-beef," to announce the dinner
hour; the sweet, plaintive strains of "Lochaber no more," followed
most incongruously by "the Little Cock-Sparrow," at "retreat;" and
finally, the long, rolling tattoo, late in the evening, made pleasant
divisions of our time, which, by the aid of books, music, and drawing,
in addition to household occupations, seemed to fly more swiftly than
ever before. It was on Sunday that I most missed my eastern home. I had
planned beforehand what we should do on the first recurrence of this
sacred day, under our own roof. "We shall have, at least," said I to
myself, "the Sabbath's quiet and repose; and I can, among other things,
benefit poor Louisa by giving her some additional lessons of a serious

So, while she was removing the breakfast things, I said to her,

"Now, Louisa, get your work all finished, and everything put neatly
aside, and then come here to me again."

"Yes, ma'am."

We sat down to our books, and read and waited; we waited and read
another hour--no Louisa.

There was music and the sound of voices on the parade in front of
our windows, but that did not disturb us: it was what we were daily
accustomed to.

I must go at length, and see what could be keeping my damsel so.
I descended to the kitchen. The breakfast things stood upon the
table--the kettles and spider upon the hearth--the fire was out--the
kitchen empty.

Passing back into the hall, which extended the whole length of the
house, and opened in front upon the parade, I perceived a group
collected in the area, of all shades and colors, and in the midst, one
round, woolly head which I could not mistake, bobbing up and down, now
on this side, now on that, while peals of laughter were issuing from
the whole group.

"Louisa," I called, "come here; what are you doing there?"

"Looking at inspection."

"But why are not your breakfast tilings washed, and your kitchen swept?
Did I not tell you I wished you to come up and learn your lessons?"

"Yes, ma'am; but I had to see inspection first. Everybody looks at
'inspection' on Sunday."

I found it was in vain to expect to do more for Louisa than give her an
afternoon's lesson, and with that I was obliged to content myself.

I felt that it would be very pleasant, and perhaps profitable, for all
the inmates of the garrison to assemble on this day; one of our number
might be found who would read a portion of the church-service, and a
sermon from one of our different selections.

I approached the subject cautiously, with an inquiry to this effect:

"Are there none among the officers who are religiously disposed?"

"Oh, yes," replied the one whom I addressed, "there is S----; when he
is half-tipsy, he takes his Bible and 'Newton's Works,' and goes to bed
and cries over them; he thinks in this way he is excessively pious."

S---- was among the officers who had never called upon us; it was fair
to infer that if his religious principles did not correct his own evil
habits, they would not aid much in improving others; therefore, it
seemed useless to call in his co-operation in any scheme for a better
observance of the Lord's Day.

We had to content ourselves with writing to our friends at the east
to interest themselves in getting a missionary sent to us, who should
officiate as chaplain in the garrison, a plan that seemed to find favor
with the officers. The hope of any united religious services was, for
the present, laid aside.

The post-surgeon having obtained a furlough, his place was supplied by
Dr. Newhall, of Galena, and thus, by the addition of his gentle, quiet
wife, our circle of ladies was now enlarged to three. Here we were, in
a wilderness, but yet how contented and happy!

A gloom was soon to replace this envied tranquillity in our home. A
Frenchman, named Letendre, one day suddenly presented himself. He had
come from Chicago, with the distressing intelligence of the extreme,
indeed hopeless illness of our dear relative. Dr. Wolcott. My husband
immediately commenced his preparations for instant departure. I begged
to be permitted to accompany him, but the rapidity with which he
proposed to journey obliged him to refuse my entreaties. In a few hours
his provisions, horses, and all other things necessary for the journey
were in readiness, and he set off with Petaille Grignon, his usual
attendant on such expeditions, leaving Letendre to follow as soon as
recruited from his fatigue.

Sad and dreary were the hours of his absence, notwithstanding the
kind efforts of our friends to cheer me. In a few days I received the
news of the fatal termination of Dr. W.'s illness, brought by another
messenger. That noble heart, so full of warm and kindly affections,
had ceased to beat, and sad and desolate, indeed, were those who had
so loved and honored him.

As soon as he could possibly leave his family, my husband returned,
and it was fortunate that he had delayed no longer, for the winter now
began to set in, and with severity.

Our quarters were spacious, but having been constructed of the green
trees of the forest, cut down and sawed into boards by the hands of
the soldiers, they were considerably given to shrinking and warping,
thus leaving many a yawning crevice. Stuffing the cracks with cotton
batting, and pasting strips of paper over them, formed the employment
of many a leisure hour.

Then the chimneys, spite of all the currents of air, which might have
been expected to create a draught, had a sad habit of smoking. To
remedy this, a couple of gun-barrels had been sawed off and inserted in
the hearth, one on each side of the fire place, in the hope that the
air from the room below might help to carry the smoke into its proper
place, the chimney.

The next morning after this had been done, Louisa was washing the

"Pray, ma'am," said she, "what are these things put in here for?"

I explained their use.

"Oh, I am so glad it is only that. Uncle Ephraim (Major Twiggs'
servant) said they were to be filled with powder and fired off
Christmas Day, and he was terribly afraid they would blow the house up,
and we in it."

Ephraim, who was a most faithful and valuable servant, often amused
himself with playing upon the credulity of the younger portions of the
colored fraternity.

"Is it true," asked Louisa, one day, "that Pill on and Plante were once

"Prairie-wolves! what an idea! Why do you ask such a foolish question?"

"Because uncle Ephraim says they, and all the Frenchmen about here,
were once prairie-wolves, and that, living so near the white people,
they grew, after a time, to be like them, and learn to talk and dress
like them. And then, when they get to be old, they turn back into
prairie-wolves again, and that all the wolves that the officers bait
with their dogs used to be Frenchmen, once."

After a time, however, I ceased to straighten out these stories of
uncle Ephraim, for I was gradually arriving at the conviction that my
little colored damsel was by no means so simple and unsophisticated as
she would have me believe, and that I was, after all, the one who was
imposed upon.

The snow this winter was prodigious, and the cold intense. The water
would freeze in our parlors at a very short distance from the fire,
for, although the "fatigue parties" kept the hall filled with wood,
almost up to the ceiling, that did not counterbalance the inconvenience
of having the wide doors thrown open to the outer air for a great
portion of the day, to allow of their bringing it in. We Northerners
should have had wood-houses specially for the purpose, and not only
have kept our great hall-doors closed, but have likewise protected them
with a "hurricane house." But the Florida frontier was not a station
for our southern bachelors to have acquired the knowledge that would
have been available when the thermometer was twenty-five degrees below
zero--at a point that brandy congealed in the sideboard.

The arrival of Christmas and New Year's brought us our Indian friends
again. They had learned something of the observation of these holidays
from their French neighbors, and I had been forewarned that I should
see the squaws kissing every white man they met. Although not crediting
this to its full extent, I could readily believe that they would each
expect a present, as a "compliment of the season," so I duly prepared
myself with a supply of beads, ribbons, combs, and other trinkets.
Knowing them to be fond of dainties, I had also a quantity of crullers
and doughnuts made ready the day before, as a treat to them.

To my great surprise and annoyance, only a moderate share of the cakes,
the frying of which had been entrusted to Louisa, were brought up to be
placed in the "Davis."

"Where are the rest of the cakes, Louisa?"

"That great fellow, Hancock, came in with the fatigue party to fill the
water-barrels, and while I had just stepped into the store-room to get
some more flour, he carried off all I had got cooked."

And Louisa made a face and whined, as if she had not herself treated
every soldier who had set his foot in the premises.

At an early hour the next morning I had quite a levee of the
Ho-tshung-rah matrons. They seated themselves in a circle on the
floor, and I was sorry to observe that the application of a little
soap and water to their blankets had formed no part of their holiday
preparations. There being no one to interpret, I thought I would begin
the conversation in a way intelligible to themselves, so I brought out
of the sideboard a china dish, filled with the nice brown crullers,
over which I had grated, according to custom, a goodly quantity of
white sugar. I handed it to the first of the circle. She took the
dish from my hand, and deliberately pouring all the cakes into the
corner of her blanket, returned it to me empty. "She must be a most
voracious person," thought I, "but I will manage better the next time."
I refilled the dish, and approached the next one, taking care to keep
a fast hold of it as I offered the contents, of which I supposed she
would modestly take one. Not so, however. She scooped out the whole
with her two hands, and, like the former, bestowed them in her blanket.
My sense of politeness revolted at handing them out one by one, as we
do to children, so I sat down to deliberate what was to be done, for
evidently the supply would not long answer such an ample demand, and
there would be more visitors anon.

While I was thus perplexed those who had received the cakes commenced
a distribution, and the whole number was equitably divided among the
company. But I observed they did not eat them. They passed their
fingers over the grated sugar, looked in each other's faces, and
muttered in low tones--there was evidently something they did not
understand. Presently one more adventurous than the rest wet her
fingers, and taking up a few grains of the sugar put it cautiously to
her mouth.

"Tah-nee-zhoo-rah!" (Sugar!) was her delighted exclamation, and they
all broke out into a hearty laugh; it is needless to say that the
cakes disappeared with all the celerity they deemed compatible with
good-breeding. Never having seen any sugar but the brown or yellow
maple, they had supposed the white substance to be salt, and for that
reason had hesitated to taste it.

Their visit was prolonged until Shaw-nee-aw-kee made his appearance,
and then, having been made happy by their various gifts, they all took
their departure.

About this time, Mr. Kinzie received a letter from Col. Richard M.
Johnson, of Kentucky.[51] This gentleman had interested himself greatly
in a school established in that State, for the education of Indian
youths and children. The purport of his letter was to request the Agent
to use every endeavor to induce the Winnebagoes not only to send their
children to this institution for their education, but also (what was
still more important) to set apart a portion of their annuity money, to
assist in sustaining it.

There happened to be, at this holiday season, a number of the chiefs in
the neighborhood of the Portage, and a messenger was sent to convene
them all at the house of Paquette, the interpreter, that their "father"
might hold a talk with them.

On the day appointed they all assembled. The subject matter of the
letter was laid before them, and all the advantages of civilization
and education duly set forth--the benefits which would arise to their
nation, if even a small portion of the younger members could be
well-taught by the whites, and then return to their tribe, to instruct
them in the learning, the arts, manufactures, and habits of civilized
life. To each paragraph, as it was uttered to them, they gave a
unanimous "Humph!" (Good.)

When their "father's" address was ended, _Day-kau-ray_, the oldest and
most venerable among the chiefs, rose and spoke as follows:--

"Father,--The Great Spirit made the white man and the Indian. He did
not make them alike. He gave the white man a heart to love peace, and
the arts of a quiet life. He taught him to live in towns, to build
houses, to make books, to learn all things that would make him happy
and prosperous in the way of life appointed him. To the red man the
Great Spirit gave a different character. He gave him a love of the
woods, of a free life, of hunting and fishing, of making war with
his enemies and taking scalps. The white man does not live like the
Indian--it is not his nature. Neither does the Indian love to live like
the white man--the Great Spirit did not make him so.

"Father,--We do not wish to do anything contrary to the will of the
Great Spirit. If he had made us with white skins, and characters like
the white men, then we would send our children to this school to be
taught like the white children.

"Father,--We think that if the Great Spirit had wished us to be like
the whites, he would have made us so. As he has not seen fit to do so,
we believe he would be displeased with us, to try and make ourselves
different from what he thought good.

"Father,--I have nothing more to say. This is what we think. If we
change our minds, we will let you know."

It will be seen from these remarks of Day-kau-ray, that the Indians
entertain a conviction that the Great Spirit himself teaches the white
man the arts and sciences, and since he has given the red man no
instruction in these branches, it would be unbecoming in him to attempt
to acquire them in an irregular manner.

With little incidents of this kind, and with an occasional dinner
or tea-party to the young officers, sometimes given at the Major's
quarters, sometimes at our own, our course of life passed pleasantly
on. At times I would amuse myself by making "something very nice" in
the form of a fruit cake or pie, to send to the quarters of the young
officers as a present, it being supposed that possibly, without a
lady to preside over their mess, it might be sometimes deficient in
these delicacies. Mrs. Twiggs was so fortunate as to have well-trained
servants to do for her that which, thanks to my little dark handmaid,
always fell to my share.

One day I had made some mince pies, which the Major and my husband
greatly approved, and I thought I would send one to each of the young

It happened that my husband, that day, in returning from superintending
his men on the other side of the river, had occasion to call on some
errand at Captain Harney's quarters.

Dinner had just been placed upon the table, and the Captain insisted
on his visitor's sitting down and partaking Math him, and another
gentleman who was present. The pork and beans were pronounced
excellent, and being removed there followed a mince pie.

The Captain cut it, and helped his guests, then taking a piece himself,
he commenced tasting it. Pushing back his plate with an exclamation and
a sudden jerk, he called to his servant, a little thick-set mulatto who
waited--"David, you yellow rascal, how dare you put such a pie on my
table?" And turning to the company apologetically, he said--

"If there is anything on earth David _does_ understand, it is how to
make a mince pie, and here he has filled this with brandy, so we cannot
eat a morsel of it!"

"Please, sir," said David, modestly, "I did not make the pie--it is one
Mrs. Kinzie sent as a present."

The poor Captain was now in a predicament. He raved at himself, at the
same time conjuring my husband most earnestly not to tell me what a
mistake he had made--an injunction that was lost sight of as soon as he
returned to his home. As for the unlucky Captain, he did not venture to
call on me again until he felt sure I had forgotten the circumstance.



Early in January the snow fell in great abundance. We had an unusual
quantity at the Portage, but in "the diggings," as the lead-mining
country was called, it was of an unheard-of depth--five or six feet
upon a level.

An express had been dispatched to Chicago by the officers to take
our letters, and bring back the mail from that place. A tough, hardy
soldier, named Sulky, acted as messenger, and he had hitherto made
light of his burden or the length of the way, notwithstanding that his
task was performed on foot with his pack upon his shoulders. But now
Sulky had been absent some weeks, and we had given him up entirely,
persuaded that he must have perished with cold and starvation.

At length he appeared, nearly blind from travelling in the snow. He
had lain by three weeks in an Indian lodge, the snow being too deep to
permit him to journey. The account he gave put an end to the hopes I
had begun to entertain of being able to visit our friends at Chicago in
the course of this winter.

We had, before the last heavy fall of snow, been forming plans to that
effect. Captain Harney had kindly commenced preparing some trains, or
boxes placed on sledges, which it was thought would, when lined with
buffalo skins, furnish a very comfortable kind of vehicle for the
journey; and I was still inclined to think a good, deep bed of snow
over the whole country no great obstacle to a sleigh-ride. The whole
matter was, however, cut short by the commanding officer, who from the
first had violently opposed the scheme, declaring that he would order
the sentinels to fire on us if we attempted to leave the fort. So,
finding the majority against us, we were obliged to yield.

The arrival of sweet, lovely, little Lizzie Twiggs, before January
was quite past, was an event that shed light and joy in at least two
dwellings. It seemed as if she belonged to all of us, and as she
increased in size and beauty, it was hard to say who, among us all, was
most proud of her. If we had ever felt any languid hours before, we
could have none now--she was the pet, the darling, the joint-property
of both households.

       *       *       *       *       *

Whatever regret I might have had previous to this event, at the idea of
leaving my friend for the three weeks to which we proposed to limit our
visit to Chicago, I felt now that she would scarcely miss me, and that
we might hold ourselves in readiness to take advantage of the first
improvement in the weather, to put this favorite project in execution.

During the latter part of February the cold became less severe. The
snows melted away, and by the beginning of March the weather was so
warm and genial, that we were quite confident of being able to make the
journey on horseback without any serious difficulty.

Our plans once settled upon, the first thing to be provided was warm
and comfortable apparel. A riding-habit of stout broadcloth was
pronounced indispensable to my equipment. But of such an article I was
destitute. Nothing among my wedding travelling gear seemed in any way
to offer a substitute. What was to be done? The requisite material was
to be found in abundance at the sutler's store (_the shantee_ as it was
technically termed), but how to get it manufactured into a suitable
garment was the question.

The regimental tailor was summoned. He was cook to one of the
companies, and there were at first some doubts whether he could be
permitted to forsake the spit for the needle, during the time I should
require his services. All his tailoring-work had, heretofore, been
done at odd times on a bench in the company kitchen, and thither he
now proposed to carry the riding-habit. I suggested that, in order to
superintend the work, I should thus be driven to take up my abode for
the time being in the barracks, which would be a decided inconvenience.

To remedy the difficulty, he was finally so happy as to find a soldier
in "Company D," who consented to officiate in his place as cook until
his term of service to me should expire.

Behold, then, a little, solemn-looking man in his stocking feet, seated
cross-legged on an Indian mat by my parlor window. He had made all his
arrangements himself, and I deemed it wisest not to interfere with
him. The cutting-out was the most difficult part, and as he had never
made a lady's riding-habit, that task fell to my share. I was as great
a novice as himself, and I must admit that this, my first effort, was
open to criticism. But the little tailor was of a different opinion. He
was in an ecstasy with our joint performance.

"Upon my word, madam," he would exclaim, surveying it with admiring
eyes, "we shall have a very respectable garment!" I do not know how
many times he repeated this during the three days that the work was in

I believe he had not perfect confidence in the culinary powers of his
comrade of "Company D," for regularly a half-hour before beat of drum,
his work was folded and laid aside, his snips gathered up, and all
things being restored to order, he would slip out, resume his shoes,
which, _Turk-like_, he had left outside the door, and speed over to the
barrack-kitchen to see how matters were going on.

In the meantime, great preparations were making below, under the
supervision of our tidy, active, little French servant, Mrs.
Pillon, the wife of one of the _engagés_, by whom the irregular and
unmanageable Louisa had been replaced.

Biscuits were baked, a ham, some tongues, and sundry pieces of
salt-pork were boiled, coffee roasted and ground, sugar cracked,
isinglass cut in pieces of the size requisite for a pot of coffee. For
the reception of all these different articles cotton bags of different
sizes had been previously prepared. Large sacks of skin, called by
the Canadians _porches_, were also provided to hold the more bulky
provisions, for our journey was to be a long one.

The distance from Fort Winnebago to Chicago was not very formidable,
it is true, if the direct route were taken, but that we knew to be
impossible at this season of the year. The route by Kosh-ko-nong was
out of the question; all the Indians being absent from their villages
in the winter, and the ice being now gone, we could have no means of
crossing the Rock River at that place.

There remained therefore no alternative but to proceed south to Dixon,
or, as it was then called, Ogie's Ferry, the only certain means of
crossing this broad and rapid stream. This route being so much out of
our direct course that we could not hope to accomplish it in less than
six days, it was necessary to prepare accordingly.

While the wardrobe and provisions were thus in preparation,
arrangements were also to be made as to our retinue and mode of

Mr. Kinzie decided to take with him but two men: Plante and Pierre
Roy.[52] The former to act as guide, on the assurance that he knew
every mile of the way, from the Portage to Ogie's Ferry, and from
Ogie's Ferry to Chicago.

The claims of the different saddle-horses were discussed, and the most
eligible one selected for my use. We hesitated for a time between "Le
Gris" and "Souris," two much-vaunted animals, belonging to Paquette,
the interpreter. At length being determined, like most of my sex, by a
regard for exterior, I chose "Le Gris," and "Souris" was assigned to
young Roy; my own little stumpy pony, "Brunêt," being pronounced just
the thing for a pack-saddle. My husband rode his own bay horse "Tom,"
while Plante, the gayest and proudest of the party, bestrode a fine,
large animal called "Jerry," which had lately been purchased for my
use, and thus was our _cortège_ complete.



Having taken a tender leave of our friends, the morning of the 8th
of March saw us mounted and equipped for our journey. The weather
was fine--the streams, already fringed with green, were sparkling in
the sun--everything gave promise of an early and genial season. In
vain, when we reached the ferry at the foot of the hill on which the
fort stood, did Major Twiggs repeat his endeavors to dissuade us from
commencing a journey which he assured me would be perilous beyond what
I could anticipate. I was resolute.

Our party was augmented by an escort of all the young officers, who
politely insisted on accompanying us as far as Duck Creek, four miles
distant. Indeed, there were some who would gladly have prosecuted the
whole journey with us, and escaped the monotony of their solitary,
uneventful life. In our rear followed an ox-cart, on which was perched
a canoe, destined to transport us over the creek, and also an extensive
marsh beyond it, which was invariably, at this season, overflowed
with water to a considerable depth. We had much amusement in watching
the progress of this vehicle as it bumped and thumped over the road,
unconscious hitherto of the dignity of a wheeled carriage.

Our little shock-headed, sun-burnt, thick-lipped Canadian (who
happened most miraculously to be the husband of my pretty servant,
Mrs. Pillon), shouted vociferously as the animals lagged in their
pace, or jolted against a stump, "_Marchez, don-g_," "_regardez_,"
"_prenez-garde_," to our infinite diversion. I was in high spirits,
foreseeing no hardships or dangers, but rather imagining myself
embarked on a pleasure excursion across the prairies. It had not even
suggested itself to me that a straw bonnet and kid gloves were no
suitable equipment for such an expedition. Never having travelled at so
inclement a season, I was heedlessly ignorant of the mode of preparing
against it, and had resisted or laughed at my husband's suggestions
to provide myself with blanket socks, and a woollen _capuchon_ for my
head and shoulders. And now, although the wind occasionally lifted my
headgear with a rude puff, and my hands ere long became swollen and
stiffened with the cold, I persuaded myself that these were trifling
evils, to which I should soon get accustomed. I was too well pleased
with the novelty of my outfit, with my hunting-knife in a gay scabbard
hanging from my neck, and my tin cup at my saddle-bow, to regard minor

On reaching Duck Creek, we took leave of our young friends,
who remained on the bank long enough to witness our passage
across--ourselves in the canoe, and the poor horses swimming the
stream, now filled with cakes of floating ice.

Beyond the rising ground which formed the opposite bank of the stream,
extended a marsh of perhaps three hundred yards across. To this the men
carried the canoe which was to bear us over. The water was not deep, so
our attendants merely took off the pack from Brunêt and my side-saddle
from Le Gris, for fear of accidents, and then mounted their own steeds,
leading the two extra ones. My husband placed the furniture of the
pack-horse and my saddle in the centre of the canoe, which he was to
paddle across.

"Now, wifie," said he, "jump in, and seat yourself flat in the bottom
of the canoe."

"Oh, no," said I; "I will sit on the little trunk in the centre; I
shall be so much more comfortable, and I can balance the canoe exactly."

"As you please, but I think you will find it is not the best way."

A vigorous push sent us a few feet from the bank. At that instant two
favorite greyhounds whom we had brought with us, and who had stood
whining upon the bank, reluctant to take to the water as they were
ordered, gave a sudden bound, and alighted full upon me. The canoe
balanced a moment--then yielded--and quick as thought, dogs, furniture,
and lady were in the deepest of the water.

My husband, who was just preparing to spring into the canoe when the
dogs thus unceremoniously took precedence of him, was at my side in a
moment, and seizing me by the collar of my cloak, begged me not to be
frightened. I was not, in the least, and only laughed as he raised and
placed me again upon the bank.

The unfortunate saddle and little trunk were then rescued, but not
until they had received a pretty thorough wetting. Our merriment was
still further increased by the sight of the maladroit Pillon, who was
attempting to ride my spirited Jerry across the marsh. He was clinging
to the neck of the animal, with a countenance distorted with terror, as
he shouted forth all manner of French objurgations. Jerry pranced and
curvetted, and finally shot forward his rider, or rather his _burden_,
headforemost, a distance of several feet into the water.

A general outcry of mirth saluted the unfortunate Frenchman, which was
redoubled as he raised himself puffing and snorting from his watery
bed, and waddled back to his starting-place, the horse, meanwhile,
very sensibly making his way to join his companions, who had already
reached the further bank.

"Well, wifie," said Mr. Kinzie, "I cannot trust you in the canoe again.
There is no way but to carry you across the marsh like a pappoose. Will
you take a ride on my shoulders?"

"With all my heart, if you will promise to take me safely"--and I was
soon mounted.

I must confess that the gentleman staggered now and then under his
burden, which was no slight one, and I was sadly afraid, more than
once, that I should meet a similar fate to old Pillon, but happily we
reached the other side in safety.

There my husband insisted on my putting on dry shoes and stockings, and
(must I confess it) drinking a little brandy, to obviate the effects
of my icy bath. He would fain have made a halt to kindle a fire and
dry my apparel and wardrobe properly, but this I would not listen to.
I endeavored to prove to him that the delay would expose me to more
cold than riding in my wet habit and cloak, and so indeed it might
have been, but along with my convictions upon the subject there was
mingled a spice of reluctance that our friends at the fort should have
an opportunity, as they certainly would have done, of laughing at our
inauspicious commencement.

Soon our horses were put in order, and our march recommenced. The day
was fine for the season. I felt no inconvenience from my wet garments,
the exercise of riding taking away all feeling of chilliness. It was
to me a new mode of travelling, and I enjoyed it the more from having
been secluded for more than five months within the walls of the fort,
scarcely varying the tenor of our lives by an occasional walk of half
a mile into the surrounding woods.

We had still another detention upon the road, from meeting Lapierre,
the blacksmith, from Sugar Creek, who with one of his associates was
going into the Portage for supplies, so that we had not travelled
more than twenty-three miles when we came to our proposed encamping
ground. It was upon a beautiful, stream, a tributary of one of the Four
Lakes,[N] that chain whose banks are unrivalled for romantic loveliness.

[Footnote N: Between two of these lakes is now situated the town of
Madison--the capital of the State of Wisconsin.]

I could not but admire the sagacity of the horses, who seemed, with
human intelligence, to divine our approach to the spot where their
toils were to cease. While still remote from the "point of woods" which
foretold a halt, they pricked up their ears, accelerated their pace,
and finally arrived at the spot on a full gallop.

We alighted at an open space, just within the verge of the wood,
or, as it is called by western travellers, "the timber." My husband
recommended to me to walk about until a fire should be made, which was
soon accomplished by our active and experienced woodsmen, to whom the
felling of a large tree was the work of a very few minutes. The dry
grass around furnished an excellent tinder, which soon ignited by the
sparks from the flint (there were no _loco-focos_ in those days), and
aided by the broken branches and bits of light-wood, soon produced a
cheering flame. "The bourgeois," in the meantime, busied himself in
setting up the tent, taking care to place it opposite the fire, but in
such a direction that the wind would carry the smoke and flame away
from the opening or door. Within upon the ground were spread, first a
bearskin, then two or three blankets (of which each equestrian had
carried two, one under the saddle and one above it), after which, the
remainder of the luggage being brought in, I was able to divest myself
of all my wet clothing and replace it with dry. Some idea of the state
of the thermometer may be formed from the fact that my riding-habit,
being placed over the end of the huge log against which our fire was
made, was, in a very few minutes, frozen so stiff as to stand upright,
giving the appearance of a dress out of which a lady had vanished in
some unaccountable manner.

It would be but a repetition of our experience upon the Fox River to
describe the ham broiled upon the "broches," the toasted bread, the
steaming coffee--the primitive table furniture. There is, however,
this difference, that of the latter we carry with us in our journeys
on horseback only a coffeepot, a teakettle, and each rider his tin cup
and hunting-knife. The deportment at table is marked by an absence of
ceremony. The knife is drawn from the scabbard--those who remember to
do so, vouchsafe it a wipe upon the napkin. Its first office is to stir
the cup of coffee--next, to divide the piece of ham which is placed
on the half of a travelling biscuit, which is held in the left hand,
and fulfils the office of a plate. It is an art only to be acquired by
long practice, to cut the meat so skilfully as not at the same time to
destroy the dish.

We take our places around the mat to enjoy what, after our fatiguing
ride, we find delicious food. The Frenchmen are seated at a little
distance, receiving their supplies of coffee, meat, and bread, and
occasionally passing jokes with "the bourgeois," who is their demigod,
and for whom their respect and devotion are never lessened by any
affability or condescension.

The meal being finished, the table furniture is rinsed in hot water
and set aside until morning. A wisp of dry prairie-grass is supposed,
in most cases, to render the knife fit to be restored to the scabbard,
and there being, at this season of the year, no amusement but that
of watching the awkward movements of the spancelled horses, in their
progress from spot to spot in search of pasturage, we are usually soon
disposed to arrange our blankets and retire to rest.

At break of day we are aroused by the shout of "the bourgeois."

"How! how! how!"

All start from their slumbers. The fire which has been occasionally
replenished through the night, is soon kindled into a flame. The horses
are caught and saddled, while a breakfast, similar in kind to the
meal of the preceding evening is preparing--the tent is struck--the
pack-horse loaded--"_tout démanché_," as the Canadian says. The
breakfast finished, we rinse our kettles and cups, tie them to our
saddle-bows, and then mount and away, leaving our fire, or rather our
smoke, to tell of our visit.

March 9th. Our journey this day led us past the first of the Four
Lakes.[53] Scattered along its banks was an encampment of Winnebagoes.
They greeted their "father" with vociferous joy--"_Bon-jour, bon-jour,
Shawnee-aw-kee._" "_Hee-nee-karray-kay-noo?_" (how do you do?) To this
succeeded the usual announcement, "_Wys-kap-rah thsoonsh-koo-nee-no!_"
(I have no bread.)

This is their form of begging, but we could not afford to be generous,
for the uncertainty of obtaining a supply, should our own be exhausted,
obliged us to observe the strictest economy.

How beautiful the encampment looked in the morning sun! The matted
lodges, with the blue smoke curling from their tops--the trees and
bushes powdered with a light snow which had fallen through the
night--the lake, shining and sparkling, almost at our feet--even the
Indians, in their peculiar costume, adding to the picturesque!

I was sorry to leave it, as we were compelled to do, in all haste,
Souris, the pack-horse, having taken it into his head to decamp while
we were in conversation with our red friends. As he had, very sensibly,
concluded to pursue his journey in the right direction, we had the good
fortune to overtake him after a short race, and having received much
scolding and some blows from young Roy, whose charge he specially was,
he was placed in the middle of the cavalcade, as a mark of disgrace for
his breach of duty.

Our road, after leaving the lake, lay over a "rolling prairie," now
bare and desolate enough. The hollows were filled with snow, which,
being partly thawed, furnished an uncertain footing for the horses,
and I could not but join in the ringing laughter of our Frenchmen, as
occasionally Brunêt and Souris, the two ponies, would flounder, almost
imbedded, through the yielding mass. Even the vain-glorious Plante,
who piqued himself on his equestrian skill, was once or twice nearly
unhorsed, from having chosen his road badly. Sometimes the elevations
were covered with a thicket or copse, in which our dogs would generally
rouse up one or more deer. Their first bound, or "lope," was the signal
for a chase. The horses seemed to enter into the spirit of it, as
"halloo" answered "halloo;" but we were never so fortunate as to get a
shot at one, for although the dogs once or twice caught, they were not
strong enough to hold them. It was about the middle of the afternoon
when we reached the "Blue Mound." I rejoiced much to have got so far,
for I was sadly fatigued, and every mile now seemed two to me. In fact,
the miles are unconscionably long in this country. When I was told that
we had still seven miles to go, to "Morrison's," where we proposed
stopping for the night, I was almost in despair. It was my first
journey on horseback, and I had not yet become inured to the exercise.

When we reached Morrison's[54] I was so much exhausted that, as my
husband attempted to lift me from the saddle, I fell into his arms.

"This will never do," said he. "To-morrow we must turn our faces
towards Fort Winnebago again."

The door opened hospitably to receive us. We were welcomed by a lady
with a most sweet, benignant countenance, and by her companion, some
years younger. The first was Mrs. Morrison--the other, Miss Elizabeth
Dodge, daughter of General Dodge.

My husband laid me upon a small bed, in the room where the ladies had
been sitting at work. They took off my bonnet and riding-dress, chafed
my hands, and prepared me some warm wine and water, by which I was
soon revived. A half hour's repose so refreshed me that I was able
to converse with the ladies, and to relieve my husband's mind of all
anxiety on my account. Tea was announced soon after, and we repaired to
an adjoining building, for _Morrison's_, like the establishment of all
settlers of that period, consisted of a group of detached log-houses or
_cabins_, each containing one or at most two apartments.

The table groaned with good cheer, and brought to mind some that I had
seen among the old-fashioned Dutch residents on the banks of the Hudson.

I had recovered my spirits, and we were quite a cheerful party. Mrs.
Morrison told us that during the first eighteen months she passed in
this country she did not speak with a white woman, the only society she
had being that of her husband and two black servant-women.

A Tennessee woman had called in with her little son just before tea,
and we amused Mr. Kinzie with a description of the pair. The mother's
visit was simply one of courtesy. She was a little dumpy woman, with a
complexion burned perfectly red by the sun--hair of an exact tow-color,
braided up from her forehead in front and from her neck behind, then
meeting on the top of her head, was fastened with a small tin comb. Her
dress was of checkered homespun, a "very tight fit," and as she wore no
ruff or handkerchief around her neck, she looked as if just prepared
for execution. She was evidently awe-struck at the sight of visitors,
and seemed inclined to take her departure at once; but the boy, not
so easily intimidated, would not understand her signs and pinches
until he had sidled up to Mrs. Morrison, and drawing his old hat still
farther over his eyes, begged for a _whang_, meaning a narrow strip of
deer-skin. The lady very obligingly cut one from a large smoked skin,
which she produced from its receptacle, and mother and son took their
leave, with a smiling but rather a _scared_ look.

After tea we returned to Mrs. Morrison's parlor, where she kindly
insisted on my again reposing myself on the little bed, to recruit
me, as she said, for the ensuing day's journey. My husband, in the
meantime, went to look after the accommodation of his men and horses.

During the conversation that ensued, I learned that Mrs. Morrison
had passed much time in the neighborhood of my recent home in Oneida
county--that many of the friends I had loved and valued were likewise
her friends, and that she had even proposed to visit me at Fort
Winnebago on hearing of my arrival there, in order to commence an
acquaintance which had thus been brought about by other and unexpected

Long and pleasant was the discourse we held together until a late hour,
and mutual was the satisfaction with which we passed old friends and
by-gone events in review, much to the edification of Miss Dodge, and of
the gentlemen when they once more joined us.



The next morning, after a cheerful breakfast, at which we were joined
by the Rev. Mr. Kent, of Galena,[55] we prepared for our journey. I
had reconciled my husband to continuing our route towards Chicago, by
assuring him that I felt as fresh and bright as when I first set out
from home.

There seemed some apprehension, however, that we might have difficulty
in "striking the trail" to Hamilton's _diggings_, our next point of

The directions we received were certainly obscure. We were to
pursue a given trail for a certain number of miles, when we should
come to a crossing into which we were to turn, taking an easterly
direction--after a time, this would bring us to a deep trail leading
straight to "Hamilton's." In this open country there are no landmarks.
One elevation is so exactly like another, that if you lose your _trail_
there is almost as little hope of regaining it as of finding a pathway
in the midst of the ocean.[O]

[Footnote O: I speak, it will be understood, of things as they existed
a quarter of a century ago.]

The trail, it must be remembered, is not a broad highway, but a narrow
path, deeply indented by the hoofs of the horses on which the Indians
travel in single file. So deeply is it sunk in the sod which covers
the prairies, that it is difficult, sometimes, to distinguish it at a
distance of a few rods.[56]

It was new ground to Mr. Kinzie, whose journeys from the Portage to
Chicago had hitherto been made in the direct route by Kosh-ko-nong.
He therefore obliged Mr. Morrison to repeat the directions again and
again, though Plante, our guide, swaggered and talked big, averring
that "he knew every hill and stream, and point of woods from that spot
to Chicago."

We had not proceeded many miles on our journey, however, before we
discovered that Monsieur Plante was profoundly ignorant of the country,
so that Mr. Kinzie was obliged to take the lead himself, and make his
way as he was best able, according to the directions he had received.
Nothing, however, like the "cross trails" we had been promised met our
view, and the path on which we had set out diverged so much from what
we knew to be the right direction, that we were at length compelled to
abandon it altogether.

We travelled the live-long day, barely making a halt at noon to bait
our horses, and refresh ourselves with a luncheon. The ride was as
gloomy and desolate as could well be imagined. A rolling prairie,
unvaried by forest or stream--hillock rising after hillock, at every
ascent of which we vainly hoped to see a distant fringe of "_timber_."
But the same cheerless, unbounded prospect everywhere met the eye,
diversified only here and there by the oblong openings, like gigantic
graves, which marked an unsuccessful search for indications of a lead

So great was our anxiety to recover our trail, for the weather was
growing more cold, and the wind more sharp and piercing, that we were
not tempted to turn from our course even by the appearance, more than
once, of a gaunt prairie-wolf, peering over the nearest rising ground,
and seeming to dare us to an encounter. The Frenchmen, it is true,
would instinctively give a shout and spur on their horses, while the
hounds, Kelda and Cora, would rush to the chase, but the "bourgeois"
soon called them back, with a warning that we must attend strictly to
the prosecution of our journey. Just before sunset we crossed, with
some difficulty, a muddy stream, which was bordered by a scanty belt
of trees, making a tolerable encamping-ground; and of this we gladly
availed ourselves, although we knew not whether it was near or remote
from the place we were in search of.

We had ridden at least fifty miles since leaving "Morrison's," yet I
was sensible of very little fatigue; but there was a vague feeling
of discomfort at the idea of being lost in this wild, cold region,
altogether different from anything I had ever before experienced. The
encouraging tones of my husband's voice, however, "Cheer up, wifie--we
will find the trail to-morrow," served to dissipate all uneasiness.

The exertions of the men soon made our "camp" comfortable,
notwithstanding the difficulty of driving the tent-pins into the frozen
ground, and the want of trees sufficiently large to make a _rousing_
fire. The place was a _stony side-hill_, as it would be called in New
England, where such things abound; but we were not disposed to be
fastidious, so we ate our salt ham and toasted our bread, and lent a
pleased ear to the chatter of our Frenchmen, who could not sufficiently
admire the heroism of "Madame John," amid the vicissitudes that befell

The wind, which at bed-time was sufficiently high to be uncomfortable,
increased during the night. It snowed heavily, and we were every moment
in dread that the tent would be carried away; but the matter was
settled in the midst by the snapping of the poles, and the falling of
the whole, with its superincumbent weight of snow, in a mass upon us.

Mr. Kinzie roused up his men, and at their head he sallied into the
neighboring wood to cut a new set of poles, leaving me to bear the
burden of the whole upon my shoulders, my only safety from the storm
being to keep snugly housed beneath the canvas.

With some difficulty a sort of support was at length adjusted for the
tent covering, which answered our purpose tolerably well until the
break of day, when our damp and miserable condition made us very glad
to rise and hang round the fire until breakfast was dispatched, and the
horses once more saddled for our journey.

The prospect was not an encouraging one. Around us was an unbroken
sheet of snow. We had no compass, and the air was so obscured by the
driving sleet, that it was often impossible to tell in which direction
the sun was. I tied my husband's silk pocket handkerchief over my veil,
to protect my face from the wind and icy particles with which the air
was filled, and which cut like a razor; but although shielded in every
way that circumstances rendered possible, I suffered intensely from the

We pursued our way, mile after mile, entering every point of woods, in
hopes of meeting with, at least, some Indian wigwam at which we could
gain intelligence. Every spot was solitary and deserted, not even the
trace of a recent fire, to cheer us with the hope of human beings
within miles of us.

Suddenly, a shout from the foremost of the party made each heart bound
with joy.

"_Une cloture! une cloture!_"--(a fence, a fence).

It was almost like life to the dead.

We spurred on, and indeed perceived a few straggling rails crowning a
rising ground at no great distance.

Never did music sound so sweet as the crowing of a cock which at this
moment saluted our ears.

Following the course of the inclosure down the opposite slope, we came
upon a group of log-cabins, low, shabby, and unpromising in their
appearance, but a most welcome shelter from the pelting storm.

"Whose cabins are these?" asked Mr. Kinzie, of a man who was cutting
wood at the door of one.

"Hamilton's," was the reply; and he stepped forward at once to assist
us to alight, hospitality being a matter of course in these wild

We were shown into the most comfortable-looking of the buildings. A
large fire was burning in the clay chimney, and the room was of a
genial warmth, notwithstanding the apertures, many inches in width,
beside the doors and windows. A woman in a tidy calico dress, and
shabby black silk cap, trimmed with still shabbier lace, rose from
her seat beside a sort of bread-trough, which fulfilled the office of
cradle to a fine, fat baby. She made room for us at the fire, but was
either too timid or too ignorant to relieve me of my wrappings and
defences, now heavy with the snow.

I soon contrived, with my husband's aid, to disembarrass myself of
them; and having seen me comfortably disposed of, and in a fair way to
be thawed after my freezing ride, he left me to see after his men and

He was a long time absent, and I expected he would return accompanied
by our host; but when he reappeared, it was to tell me, laughing, that
Mr. Hamilton hesitated to present himself before me, being unwilling
that one who had been acquainted with some of his family at the east,
should see him in his present mode of life. However, this feeling
apparently wore off, for before dinner he came in and was introduced to
me, and was as agreeable and polite as the son of Alexander Hamilton
would naturally be.[57]

The housekeeper, who was the wife of one of the miners, prepared us a
plain, comfortable dinner, and a table as long as the dimensions of the
cabin would admit was set out, the end nearest the fire being covered
with somewhat nicer furniture and more delicate fare than the remaining

The blowing of a horn was the signal for the entrance of ten or twelve
miners, who took their places below us at the table. They were the
roughest-looking set of men I ever beheld, and their language was as
uncouth as their persons. They wore hunting-shirts, trowsers, and
moccasins of deer-skin, the former being ornamented at the seams with a
fringe of the same, while a colored belt around the waist, in which was
stuck a large hunting-knife, gave each the appearance of a brigand.

Mr. Hamilton, although so much their superior, was addressed by them
uniformly as "Uncle Billy;" and I could not but fancy there was
something desperate about them, that it was necessary to propitiate by
this familiarity. This feeling was further confirmed by the remarks of
one of the company who lingered behind, after the rest of the _gang_
had taken their departure. He had learned that we came from Fort
Winnebago, and having informed us that "he was a discharged soldier,
and would like to make some inquiries about his old station and
comrades," he unceremoniously seated himself and commenced questioning

The bitterness with which he spoke of his former officers made me quite
sure he was a deserter, and I rather thought he had made his escape
from the service in consequence of some punishment. His countenance
was fairly distorted as he spoke of Captain H., to whose company he
had belonged. "There is a man in the mines," said he, "who has been in
his hands, and if he ever gets a chance to come within shot of him, I
guess the Captain will remember it. He knows well enough he darsn't set
his foot in the diggings. And there's T. is not much better. Everybody
thought it a great pity that fellow's gun snapped when he so nearly
_had_ him at Green Bay."

Having delivered himself of these sentiments, he marched out, to my
great relief.

Mr. Hamilton passed most of the afternoon with us; for the storm raged
so without that to proceed on our journey was out of the question. He
gave us many pleasant anecdotes and reminiscences of his early life
in New York, and of his adventures since he had come to the western
wilderness. When obliged to leave us for a while, he furnished us with
some books to entertain us, the most interesting of which was the
biography of his father.

Could this illustrious man have foreseen in what a scene--the dwelling
of his son--this book was to be one day perused, what would have been
his sensations?

The most amusing part of our experience was yet to come. I had been
speculating, as evening approached, on our prospects for the night's
accommodation. As our pale, melancholy-looking landlady and her fat
baby were evidently the only specimens of the feminine gender about
the establishment, it was hardly reasonable to suppose that any of the
other cabins contained wherewithal to furnish us a comfortable lodging,
and the one in which we were offered nothing of the sort to view, but
two beds, uncurtained, extended against the farther wall. My doubts
were after a time resolved, by observing the hostess stretch a cord
between the two, on which she hung some petticoats and extra garments,
by way of a partition, after which she invited us to occupy one of them.

My only preparation was, to wrap my cloak around me and lie down with
my face to the wall; but the good people were less ceremonious, for
at the distance of scarcely two feet, we could not be mistaken in the
sound of their garments being, not "laid aside," but whipped over the
partition wall between us.

Our waking thoughts, however, were only those of thankfulness for so
comfortable a lodging after the trials and fatigues we had undergone;
and even these were of short duration, for our eyes were soon closed in

The next day's sun rose clear and bright. Refreshed and invigorated,
we looked forward with pleasure to a recommencement of our journey,
confident of meeting no more mishaps by the way. Mr. Hamilton kindly
offered to accompany us to his next neighbor's, the trifling distance
of twenty-five miles. From Kellogg's to Ogie's Ferry, on the Rock
River, the road being much travelled, we should be in no danger, Mr. H.
said, of again losing our way.

The miner who owned the wife and baby, and who, consequently, was
somewhat more humanized than his comrades, in taking leave of us
"wished us well out of the country, and that we might never have
occasion to return to it!"

"I pity a body," said he, "when I see them making such an awful mistake
as to come out this way, for comfort _never touched_ this western

We found Mr. Hamilton as agreeable a companion as on the preceding day,
but a most desperate rider. He galloped on at such a rate that had I
not exchanged my pony for the fine, noble Jerry, I should have been in
danger of being left behind.

Well mounted as we all were, he sometimes nearly distanced us. We were
now among the branches of the Pickatonick,[58] and the country had
lost its prairie character, and become more rough and broken. We went
dashing on, sometimes down ravines, sometimes through narrow passes,
where, as I followed, I left fragments of my veil upon the projecting
and interwoven branches. Once my hat became entangled, and had not my
husband sprung to my rescue, I must have shared the fate of Absalom,
Jerry's ambition to keep his place in the race making it probable he
would do as did the mule who was under the unfortunate prince.

There was no halting upon the route, and as we kept the same pace
until three o'clock in the afternoon, it was beyond a question that
when we reached "Kellogg's," we had travelled at least thirty miles.
One of my greatest annoyances during the ride had been the behavior of
the little beast Brunêt. He had been hitherto used as a saddle-horse,
and had been accustomed to a station in the file near the guide or
leader. He did not relish being put in the background as a pack-horse,
and accordingly, whenever we approached a stream, where the file
broke up to permit each horseman to choose his own place of fording,
it was invariably the case that just as I was reining Jerry into the
water, Brunêt would come rushing past and throw himself into our
very footsteps. Plunging, snorting, and splashing me with water, and
sometimes even startling Jerry into a leap aside, he more than once
brought me into imminent danger of being tossed into the stream. It was
in vain that, after one or two such adventures, I learned to hold back
and give the vexatious little animal the precedence. His passion seemed
to be to go into the water precisely at the moment Jerry did, and I was
obliged at last to make a bargain with young Roy to dismount and hold
him at every stream until I had got safely across.

"Kellogg's"[P] was a comfortable mansion, just within the verge of a
pleasant "grove of timber," as a small forest is called by western
travellers. We found Mrs. Kellogg a very respectable-looking matron,
who soon informed us she was from the city of New York. She appeared
proud and delighted to entertain Mr. Hamilton, for whose family, she
took occasion to tell us, she had, in former days, been in the habit of
doing needlework.

[Footnote P: It was at this spot that the unfortunate St. Vrain lost
his life, during the Sauk war, in 1832.]

The worthy woman provided us an excellent dinner, and afterwards
installed me in a rocking-chair beside a large fire, with the "Life
of Mrs. Fletcher" to entertain me, while the gentlemen explored the
premises, visited Mr. Kellogg's "stock," and took a careful look at
their own. We had intended to go to Dixon's the same afternoon, but the
snow beginning again to fall, obliged us to content ourselves where we

In the meantime, finding we were journeying to Chicago, Mr. Kellogg
came to the determination to accompany us, having, as he said, some
business to accomplish at that place, so Mrs. Kellogg busied herself
in preparing him to set off with us the following morning. I pleaded
hard to remain yet another day, as the following was Sunday, on which
I objected to travel; but in view of the necessities of the case, the
uncertainty of the weather, and the importance of getting as quickly as
possible through this wild country, my objections were overruled, and
I could only obtain a delay in starting until so late in the afternoon,
as would give us just time to ride the sixteen miles to "Dixon's"
before sunset.

No great time was required for Mr. Kellogg's preparations. He would
take, he said, only two days' provisions, for at his brother-in-law
Dixon's we should get our supper and breakfast, and the route from
there to Chicago could, he well knew, be accomplished in a day and a

Although, according to this calculation, we had sufficient remaining
of our stores to carry us to the end of our journey, yet Mr. Kinzie
took the precaution of begging Mrs. Kellogg to bake us another bag of
biscuits, in case of accidents, and he likewise suggested to Mr. K. the
prudence of furnishing himself with something more than his limited
allowance; but the good man objected that he was unwilling to burden
his horse more than was absolutely necessary, seeing that, at this
season of the year, we were obliged to carry fodder for the animals, in
addition to the rest of their load. It will be seen that we had reason
to rejoice in our own foresight.

My experience of the previous night had rendered me somewhat less
fastidious than when I commenced my journey, so that, when introduced
to our sleeping apartment, which I found we were to share with six men,
travellers like ourselves, my only feeling was one of thankfulness that
each bed was furnished with a full suit of blue checked curtains, which
formed a very tolerable substitute for a dressing-room.



It was late on the following day (March 13th), when we took leave of
our kind hostess. She loaded us with cakes, good wishes, and messages
to her sister Dixon and the children. We journeyed pleasantly along
through a country, beautiful, in spite of its wintry appearance.

There was a house at "Buffalo Grove,"[59] at which we stopped for half
an hour, and where a nice-looking young girl presented us with some
maple-sugar of her own making. She entertained us with the history of
a contest between two rival claimants for the patronage of the stage
wagon, the proprietors of which had not decided whether to send it by
Buffalo Grove or by another route, which she pointed out to us, at no
great distance. The _driver_, she took care to inform us, was in favor
of the former; and the blush with which she replied in the affirmative
to our inquiry, "Was he a young man?" explained the whole matter

At length, just at sunset, we reached the dark, rapid waters of the
Rock River. The "ferry" which we had travelled so far out of our way
to take advantage of, proved to be merely a small boat or skiff, the
larger one having been swept off into the stream, and carried down in
the breaking up of the ice, the week previous.

My husband's first care was to get me across. He placed me with the
saddles, packs, &c., in the boat, and as, at that late hour, no time
was to be lost, he ventured, at the same time, to hold the bridles of
the two most docile horses, to guide them in swimming the river.

When we had proceeded a few rods from the shore, we were startled
by a loud puffing and blowing near us, and looking around, to our
great surprise, discovered little Brunêt just upon our "weather-bow."
Determined not to be outdone by his model, Jerry, he had taken to the
water on his own responsibility, and arrived at the opposite shore as
soon as any of the party.

All being safely landed, a short walk brought us to the house of Mr.
Dixon.[60] Although so recently come into the country, he had contrived
to make everything comfortable around him, and when he ushered us into
Mrs. Dixon's sitting-room, and seated us by a glowing wood fire, while
Mrs. Dixon busied herself in preparing us a nice supper, I felt that
the comfort overbalanced the inconvenience of such a journey.

Mrs. Dixon was surrounded by several children. One leaning against the
chimney-piece was dressed in the full Indian costume--calico shirt,
blanket, and leggings. His dark complexion, and full, melancholy eyes,
which he kept fixed upon the ashes in which he was making marks with
a stick, rarely raising them to gaze on us, as children are wont to
do, interested me exceedingly, and I inquired of an intelligent little
girl, evidently a daughter of our host:

"Who is that boy?"

"Oh! that is John Ogie," answered she.

"What is the matter with him? he looks very sad."

"Oh! he is fretting after his mother."

"Is she dead then?"

"Some say she is dead, and some say she is gone away. I guess she is
dead, and buried up in one of those graves yonder"--pointing to two
or three little picketed inclosures upon a rising ground opposite the

I felt a strong sympathy with the child, which was increased when
the little spokeswoman, in answer to my inquiry, "Has he no father?"

"Oh, yes, but he goes away, and drinks, and don't care for his

"And what becomes of John, then?"

"He stays here with us, and we teach him to read, and he learns
_dreadful_ fast."

When the boy at length turned his large dark eyes upon me, it went
to my heart. It was such a _motherless_ look. And it was explained,
when long afterward, I learned his further history. His mother was
still living, and he knew it, although with the reserve peculiar to
his people, he never spoke of her to his young companions. Unable to
endure the continued ill-treatment of her husband, a surly, intemperate
Canadian, she had left him, and returned to his family among the
Pottowattamies. Years after, this boy and a brother who had also been
left behind with their father found their way to the Upper Missouri, to
join their mother, who, with the others of her tribe, had been removed
by the Government from the shores of Lake Michigan.

A most savoury supper of ducks and venison, with their accompaniments,
soon smoked upon the board, and we did ample justice to it. Travelling
is a great sharpener of the appetite, and so is cheerfulness, and the
latter was increased by the encouraging account Mr. Dixon gave us of
the remainder of the route yet before us.

"There is no difficulty," said he, "if you keep a little to the north,
and strike the great _Sauk trail_. If you get too far to the south,
you will come upon the Winnebago Swamp, and once in that, there is no
telling when you will ever get out again. As for the distance, it is
nothing at all to speak of. Two young men came out here from Chicago,
on foot, last fall. They got here the evening of the second day; and
even with a lady in your party, you could go on horseback in less time
than that. The only thing is to be sure and get on the great track that
the Sauks have made in going every year from the Mississippi to Canada,
to receive their presents from the British Indian Agent."

The following morning, which was a bright and lovely one for that
season of the year, we took leave of Mr. and Mrs. Dixon, in high
spirits. We travelled for the first few miles along the beautiful,
undulating banks of the Rock River, always in an easterly direction,
keeping the beaten path, or rather road, which led to Fort Clark, or
Peoria. The Sauk trail,[61] we had been told, would cross this road, at
the distance of about six miles.

After having travelled, as we judged, fully that distance, we came upon
a trail, bearing north-east, and a consultation was held as to the
probability of its being the one we were in search of.

Mr. Kinzie was of opinion that it tended too much to the north, and
was, moreover, too faint and obscure for a trail so much used, and by
so large a body of Indians in their annual journeys.

Plante was positive as to its being the very spot where he and "Piché"
in their journey to Fort Winnebago, the year before, struck into the
great road. "On that very rising-ground at the point of woods, he
remembered perfectly stopping to shoot ducks, which they ate for their

Mr. Kellogg was non-committal, but sided alternately with each speaker.

As Plante was "the guide," and withal so confident of being right, it
was decided to follow him, not without some demurring, however, on
the part of the "bourgeois," who every now and then called a halt, to
discuss the state of affairs.

"Now Plante," he would say, "I am sure you are leading us too far
north. Why, man, if we keep on in this direction, following the course
of the river, we shall bring up at Kosh-ko-nong, instead of Chicago."

"Ah! mon bourgeois," would the light-hearted Canadian reply, "would I
tell you this is the road if I were not quite certain? Only one year
ago I travelled it, and can I forget so soon? Oh! no--I remember every
foot of it."

But Monsieur Plante was convinced of his mistake when the trail brought
us to the great bend of the river with its bold rocky bluffs.

"Are you satisfied, now, Plante?" asked Mr. Kinzie. "By your leave, I
will now play pilot myself," and he struck off from the trail, in a
direction as nearly east as possible.

The weather had changed and become intensely cold, and we felt that the
detention we had met with, even should we now be in the right road,
was no trifling matter. We had not added to our stock of provisions
at Dixon's, wishing to carry as much forage as we were able for our
horses, for whom the scanty picking around our encamping grounds
afforded an insufficient meal. But we were buoyed up by the hope that
we were in the right path at last, and we journeyed on until night,
when we reached a comfortable "encampment," in the edge of a grove near
a small stream.

Oh! how bitterly cold that night was! The salted provisions, to which I
was unaccustomed, occasioned me an intolerable thirst, and my husband
was in the habit of placing the little tin coffeepot filled with water
at my bed's head when we went to rest, but this night it was frozen
solid long before midnight. We were so well wrapped up in blankets that
we did not suffer from cold while within the tent, but the open air was
severe in the extreme.

March 15th. We were roused by the "bourgeois" at peep of day to make
preparations for starting. We must find the Sauk trail this day at all
hazards. What would become of us should we fail to do so? It was a
question no one liked to ask, and certainly one that none could have

On leaving our encampment, we found ourselves entering a marshy tract
of country. Myriads of wild geese, brant, and ducks rose up screaming
at our approach. The more distant lakes and ponds were black with them,
but the shallow water through which we attempted to make our way was
frozen by the severity of the night, to a thickness not sufficient
to bear the horses, but just such as to cut their feet and ankles at
every step as they broke through it. Sometimes the difficulty of going
forward was so great that we were obliged to retrace our steps and make
our way round the head of the marsh, thus adding to the discomforts of
our situation by the conviction, that while journeying diligently, we
were, in fact, making very little progress.

This swampy region at length passed, we came upon more solid ground,
chiefly the open prairie. But now a new trouble assailed us. The
weather had moderated, and a blinding snow storm came on. Without
a trail that we could rely upon, and destitute of a compass, our
only dependence had been the sun to point out our direction, but the
atmosphere was now so obscure that it was impossible to tell in what
quarter of the heavens he was.

We pursued our way, however, and a devious one it must have been.
After travelling in this way many miles, we came upon an Indian
trail, deeply indented, running at right angles with the course we
were pursuing. The snow had ceased, and the clouds becoming thinner,
we were able to observe the direction of the sun, and to perceive
that the trail ran north and south. What should we do? Was it safest
to pursue our easterly course, or was it probable that by following
this new path we should fall into the direct one we had been so long
seeking? If we decided to take the trail, should we go north or south?
Mr. Kinzie was for the latter. He was of opinion we were still too far
north--somewhere about the Grand Marais, or Kish-wau-kee. Mr. Kellogg
and Plante were for taking the northerly direction. The latter was
positive his bourgeois had already gone too far south--in fact, that we
must now be in the neighborhood of the Illinois river. Finding himself
in the minority, my husband yielded, and we turned our horses' heads
north, much against his will. After proceeding a few miles, however, he
took a sudden determination. "You may go north, if you please," said
he, "but I am convinced that the other course is right, and I shall
face about--follow who will."

So we wheeled round and rode south again, and many a long and weary
mile did we travel, the monotony of our ride broken only by the
querulous remarks of poor Mr. Kellogg. "I am really afraid we are
wrong, Mr. Kinzie. I feel pretty sure that the young man is right. It
looks most natural to me that we should take a northerly course, and
not be stretching away so far to the south."

To all this, Mr. Kinzie turned a deaf ear. The Frenchmen rode on in
silence. They would as soon have thought of cutting off their right
hand as showing opposition to the bourgeois when he had once expressed
his decision. They would never have dreamed of offering an opinion or
remark unless called upon to do so.

The road, which had continued many miles through the prairie, at
length, in winding round a point of woods, brought us suddenly upon
an Indian village. A shout of joy broke from the whole party, but no
answering shout was returned--not even a bark of friendly welcome--as
we galloped up to the wigwams. All was silent as the grave. We rode
round and round, then dismounted and looked into several of the
spacious huts. They had evidently been long deserted. Nothing remained
but the bare walls of bark, from which everything in the shape of
furniture had been stripped by the owners and carried with them to
their wintering-grounds; to be brought back in the spring, when they
returned to make their cornfields and occupy their summer cabins.

Our disappointment may be better imagined than described. With heavy
hearts, we mounted and once more pursued our way, the snow again
falling and adding to the discomforts of our position. At length
we halted for the night. We had long been aware that our stock of
provisions was insufficient for another day, and here we were--nobody
knew where--in the midst of woods and prairies--certainly far from any
human habitation, with barely enough food for a slender evening's meal.

The poor dogs came whining around us to beg their usual portion, but
they were obliged to content themselves with a bare bone, and we
retired to rest with the feeling that if not actually hungry then, we
should certainly be so to-morrow.

The morrow came. Plante and Roy had a bright fire and a nice pot of
coffee for us. It was our only breakfast, for on shaking the bag and
turning it inside out, we could make no more of our stock of bread
than three crackers, which the rest of the party insisted I should put
in my pocket for my dinner. I was much touched by the kindness of Mr.
Kellogg, who drew from his wallet a piece of tongue and a slice of
fruitcake, which he said "he had been saving for _the lady_ since the
day before, for he saw how matters were a-going."

Poor man! it would have been well if he had listened to Mr. Kinzie, and
provided himself at the outset with a larger store of provisions. As it
was, those he brought with him were exhausted early the second day, and
he had been _boarding_ with us for the last two meals.

We still had the trail to guide us, and we continued to follow it until
about nine o'clock, when, in emerging from a wood, we came upon a broad
and rapid river. A collection of Indian wigwams stood upon the opposite
bank, and as the trail led directly to the water, it was fair to infer
that the stream was fordable. We had no opportunity of testing it,
however, for the banks were so lined with ice, which was piled up tier
upon tier by the breaking-up of the previous week, that we tried in
vain to find a path by which we could descend the bank to the water.

The men shouted again and again in hope some straggling inhabitant of
the village might be at hand with his canoe. No answer was returned
save by the echoes. What was to be done? I looked at my husband and
saw that care was on his brow, although he still continued to speak
cheerfully. "We will follow this cross-trail down the bank of the
river," said he. "There must be Indians wintering near in some of these
points of wood."

I must confess that I felt somewhat dismayed at our prospects, but I
kept up a show of courage, and did not allow my despondency to be seen.
All the party were dull and gloomy enough.

We kept along the bank, which was considerably elevated above the
water, and bordered at a little distance with a thick wood. All at
once my horse, who was mortally afraid of Indians, began to jump and
prance, snorting and pricking up his ears as if an enemy were at hand.
I screamed with delight to my husband, who was at the head of the file,
"Oh, John! John! there are Indians near--look at Jerry!"

At this instant a little Indian dog ran out from under the bushes by
the roadside, and began barking at us. Never were sounds more welcome.
We rode directly into the thicket, and descending into a little hollow,
found two squaws crouching behind the bushes, trying to conceal
themselves from our sight.

They appeared greatly relieved when Mr. Kinzie addressed them in the
Pottowattamie language--

"What are you doing here?"

"Digging Indian potatoes"--(a species of artichoke.)

"Where is your lodge?"

"On the other side of the river."

"Good--then you have a canoe here. Can you take us across?"

"Yes--the canoe is very small."

They conducted us down the bank to the water's edge where the canoe
was. It was indeed _very small_. My husband explained to them that
they must take me across first, and then return for the others of the

"Will you trust yourself alone over the river?" inquired he. "You see
that but one can cross at a time."

"Oh! yes"--and I was soon placed in the bottom of the canoe, lying flat
and looking up at the sky, while the older squaw took the paddle in her
hand, and placed herself on her knees at my head, and the younger, a
girl of fourteen or fifteen, stationed herself at my feet. There was
just room enough for me to lie in this position, each of the others
kneeling in the opposite ends of the canoe.

While these preparations were making, Mr. Kinzie questioned the woman
as to our whereabout. They knew no name for the river but "Saumanong."
This was not definite, it being the generic term for any large stream.
But he gathered that the village we had passed higher up, on the
opposite side of the stream, was Wau-ban-see's, and then he knew that
we were on the Fox River, and probably about fifty miles from Chicago.

The squaw, in answer to his inquiries, assured him that Chicago was
"close by."

"That means," said he, "that it is not so far off as Canada. We must
not be too sanguine."

The men sat about unpacking the horses, and I in the meantime was
paddled across the river. The old woman immediately returned, leaving
the younger one with me for company. I seated myself on the fallen
trunk of a tree, in the midst of the snow, and looked across the dark
waters. I am not ashamed to confess my weakness--for the first time
on my journey I shed tears. It was neither hunger, nor fear, nor cold
which extorted them from me. It was the utter desolation of spirit, the
sickness of heart which "hope deferred" ever occasions, and which of
all evils is the hardest to bear.

The poor little squaw looked into my face with a wondering and
sympathizing expression. Probably she was speculating in her own mind
what a person who rode so fine a horse, and wore so comfortable a
broadcloth dress, could have to cry about. I pointed to a seat beside
me on the log, but she preferred standing and gazing at me, with the
same pitying expression. Presently she was joined by a young companion,
and after a short chattering, of which I was evidently the subject,
they both trotted off into the woods, and left me to my own solitary

"What would my friends at the East think," said I to myself, "if they
could see me now? What would poor old Mrs. Welsh say? She who warned
me that _if I came away so far to the West, I should break my heart?_
Would she not rejoice to find how likely her prediction was to be

These thoughts roused me. I dried up my tears, and by the time my
husband with his party, and all his horses and luggage, were across, I
had recovered my cheerfulness, and was ready for fresh adventures.



We followed the old squaw to her lodge, which was at no great distance
in the woods. I had never before been in an Indian lodge, although I
had occasionally peeped into one of the many, clustered round the house
of the interpreter at the Portage on my visits to his wife.

This one was very nicely arranged. Four sticks of wood placed to form
a square in the centre, answered the purpose of a hearth, within which
the fire was built, the smoke escaping through an opening in the top.
The mats of which the lodge was constructed were very neat and new, and
against the sides, depending from the poles or framework, hung various
bags of Indian manufacture, containing their dried food and other
household treasures. Sundry ladles, small kettles, and wooden bowls
also hung from the cross-poles, and dangling from the centre, by an
iron chain, was a large kettle, in which some dark, suspicious-looking
substance was seething over the scanty fire. On the floor of the lodge,
between the fire and the outer wall, were spread mats, upon which my
husband invited me to be seated and make myself comfortable.

The first demand of an Indian on meeting a white man is for _bread_, of
which they are exceedingly fond, and I knew enough of the Pottowattamie
language to comprehend the timid "_pe-qua-zhe-gun choh-kay-go_" (I have
no bread), with which the squaw commenced our conversation after my
husband had left the lodge.

I shook my head, and endeavored to convey to her that, so far from
being able to give, I had had no breakfast myself. She understood me,
and instantly produced a bowl, into which she ladled a quantity of
Indian potatoes from the kettle over the fire, and set them before me.
I was too hungry to be fastidious, and owing partly, no doubt, to the
sharpness of my appetite, I really found them delicious.

Two little girls, inmates of the lodge, sat gazing at me with evident
admiration and astonishment, which was increased when I took my little
prayer-book from my pocket and began to read. They had, undoubtedly,
never seen a book before, and I was amused at the care with which they
looked _away_ from me, while they questioned their mother about my
strange employment and listened to her replies.

While thus occupied, I was startled by a sudden sound of "hogh!"
and the mat which hung over the entrance of the lodge was raised,
and an Indian entered with that graceful bound which is peculiar to
themselves. It was the master of the lodge, who had been out to shoot
ducks, and was just returned. He was a tall, finely-formed man, with a
cheerful, open countenance, and he listened to what his wife in a quiet
tone related to him, while he divested himself of his accoutrements in
the most unembarrassed, well-bred manner imaginable.

Soon my husband joined us. He had been engaged in attending to the
comfort of his horses, and assisting his men in making their fire,
and pitching their tent, which the rising storm made a matter of some

From the Indian he learned that we were in what was called "the Big
Woods,"[Q] or "Piché's Grove," from a Frenchman of that name living
not far from the spot--that the river we had crossed was the Fox
River--that he could guide us to _Piché's_, from which the road was
perfectly plain, or even into Chicago if we preferred--but that we had
better remain encamped for that day, as there was a storm coming on,
and in the meantime he would go and shoot some ducks for our dinner and
supper. He was accordingly furnished with powder and shot, and set off
again for game without delay.

[Footnote Q: Probably at what is now Oswego. The name of a portion of
the wood is since corrupted, into _Specie's Grove_.]

I had put into my pocket, on leaving home, a roll of scarlet ribbon,
in case a stout string should be wanted, and I now drew it forth, and
with the knife which hung around my neck I cut off a couple of yards
for each of the little girls. They received it with great delight, and
their mother, dividing each portion into two, tied a piece to each of
the little clubs into which their hair was knotted on the temples.
They laughed, and exclaimed "Saum!" as they gazed at each other, and
their mother joined in their mirth, although, as I thought, a little
unwilling to display her maternal exultation before a stranger.

The tent being all in order, my husband came for me, and we took leave
of our friends in the wigwam with grateful hearts.

The storm was raging without. The trees were bending and cracking
around us, and the air was completely filled with the wild-fowl
screaming and _quacking_ as they made their way southward before the
blast. Our tent was among the trees not far from the river. My husband
took me to the bank to look for a moment at what we had escaped. The
wind was sweeping down from the north in a perfect hurricane. The water
was filled with masses of snow and ice, dancing along upon the torrent,
over which were hurrying thousands of wild-fowl, making the woods
resound to their deafening clamor.

Had we been one hour later, we could not possibly have crossed the
stream, and there seems to have been nothing for us but to have
remained and starved in the wilderness. Could we be sufficiently
grateful to that kind Providence that had brought us safely through
such dangers?

The men had cut down an immense tree, and built a fire against it, but
the wind shifted so continually that every five minutes the tent would
become completely filled with smoke, so that I was driven into the open
air for breath. Then I would seat myself on one end of the huge log,
as near the fire as possible, for it was dismally cold, but the wind
seemed actuated by a kind of caprice, for in whatever direction I took
my seat, just that way came the smoke and hot ashes, puffing in my face
until I was nearly blinded. Neither veil nor silk handkerchief afforded
an effectual protection, and I was glad when the arrival of our
huntsmen, with a quantity of ducks, gave me an opportunity of diverting
my thoughts from my own sufferings, by aiding the men to pick them and
get them ready for our meal.

We borrowed a kettle from our Indian friends. It was not remarkably
clean; but we heated a little water in it, and _prairie-hay'd_ it out,
before consigning our birds to it, and with a bowl of Indian potatoes,
a present from our kind neighbors, we soon had an excellent soup.

What with the cold, the smoke, and the driving ashes and cinders, this
was the most uncomfortable afternoon I had yet passed, and I was glad
when night came, and I could creep into the tent and cover myself up in
the blankets, out of the way of all three of these evils.

The storm raged with tenfold violence during the night. We were
continually startled by the crashing of the falling trees around us,
and who could tell but that the next would be upon us? Spite of
our fatigue, we passed an almost sleepless night. When we arose in
the morning, we were made fully alive to the perils by which we had
been surrounded. At least fifty trees, the giants of the forest, lay
prostrate within view of the tent.

When we had taken our scanty breakfast, and were mounted and ready
for departure, it was with difficulty we could thread our way, so
completely was it obstructed by the fallen trunks.

Our Indian guide had joined us at an early hour, and after conducting
us carefully out of the wood, and pointing out to us numerous
bee-trees,[R] for which he said that grove was famous, he set off at a
long trot, and about nine o'clock brought us to _Piché's_, a log-cabin
on a rising ground, looking off over the broad prairie to the east. We
had hoped to get some refreshment here, Piché being an old acquaintance
of some of the party; but alas! the master was from home. We found his
cabin occupied by Indians and travellers--the latter few, the former

[Footnote R: The honey-bee is not known in the perfectly wild countries
of North America. It is ever the pioneer of civilization, and the
Indians call it "_the white man's bird_."]

There was no temptation to a halt, except that of warming ourselves at
a bright fire that was burning in the clay chimney. A man in Quaker
costume stepped forward to answer our inquiries, and offered to become
our escort to Chicago, to which place he was bound--so we dismissed our
Indian friend, with a satisfactory remuneration for all the trouble he
had so kindly taken for us.

A long reach of prairie extended from Piché's to the Du Page, between
the two forks of which, Mr. Dogherty, our new acquaintance, told us
we should find the dwelling of a Mr. Hawley, who would give us a
comfortable dinner.

The weather was intensely cold. The wind, sweeping over the wide
prairie with nothing to break its force, chilled our very hearts.
I beat my feet against the saddle to restore the circulation, when
they became benumbed with the cold, until they became so bruised I
could beat them no longer. Not a house or wigwam, not even a clump of
trees as a shelter, offered itself for many a weary mile. At length
we reached the west fork of the Du Page. It was frozen, but not
sufficiently so to bear the horses. Our only resource was to cut a way
for them through the ice. It was a work of time, for the ice had frozen
to several inches in thickness, during the last bitter night. Plante
went first with an axe, and cut as far as he could reach, then mounted
one of the hardy little ponies, and with some difficulty broke the ice
before him, until he had opened a passage to the opposite shore.

How the poor animals shivered as they were reined in among the floating
ice! And we, who sat waiting in the piercing wind, were not much
better. Probably Brunêt was of the same opinion; for with his usual
perversity, he plunged in immediately after Plante, and stood shaking
and quaking behind him, every now and then looking around him, as much
as to say, "I've got ahead of you, this time!" We were all across at
last, and spurred on our horses, until we reached Hawley's[S]--a large,
commodious dwelling, near the east fork of the river.

[Footnote S: It was near this spot that the brother of Mr. Hawley, a
Methodist preacher, was killed by the Sauks, in 1832, after having been
tortured by them with the most wanton barbarity.]

The good woman welcomed us kindly, and soon made us warm and
comfortable. We felt as if we were in a civilized land once more. She
proceeded immediately to prepare dinner for us; and we watched her with
eager eyes, as she took down a huge ham from the rafters, out of which
she cut innumerable slices, then broke any quantity of fine fresh eggs
into a pan, in readiness for frying--then mixed a _johnny-cake_, and
placed it against a board in front of the fire to bake. It seemed to
me that even with the aid of this fine bright fire, the dinner took
an unconscionable time to cook; but cooked it was, at last, and truly
might the good woman stare at the travellers' appetites we had brought
with us. She did not know what short commons we had been on for the
last two days.

We found, upon inquiry, that we could, by pushing on, reach Lawton's,
on the Aux Plaines, that night--we should then be within twelve miles
of Chicago. Of course we made no unnecessary delay, but set off as soon
after dinner as possible.

The crossing of the east fork of the Du Page was more perilous than the
former one had been. The ice had become broken, either by the force of
the current, or by some equestrians having preceded us and cut through
it, so that when we reached the bank, the ice was floating down in
large cakes. The horses had to make a rapid dart through the water,
which was so high, and rushing in such a torrent, that if I had not
been mounted on Jerry, the tallest horse in the cavalcade, I must have
got a terrible splashing. As it was, I was well frightened, and grasped
both bridle and mane with the utmost tenacity. After this we travelled
on as rapidly as possible, in order to reach our place of destination
before dark.

Mr. Dogherty, a tall, bolt upright man, half Quaker, half Methodist,
did his best to entertain me, by giving me a thorough schedule of his
religious opinions, with the reasons from Scripture upon which they
were based. He was a good deal of a perfectionist, and evidently looked
upon himself with no small satisfaction, as a living illustration of
his favorite doctrine.

"St. John says," this was the style of his discourse, "St. John says,
'He that is born of God, doth not commit sin.' Now, _if_ I am born of
God, I do not commit sin."

I was too cold and too weary to argue the point, so I let him have
it all his own way. I believe he must have thought me rather a dull
companion; but at least, he gave me the credit of being a good listener.

It was almost dark when we reached Lawton's. The Aux Plaines[T] was
frozen, and the house was on the other side. By loud shouting, we
brought out a man from the building, and he succeeded in cutting the
ice, and bringing a canoe over to us; but not until it had become
difficult to distinguish objects in the darkness.

[Footnote T: Rivière Aux Plaines was the original French designation,
now changed to _Desplaines_, pronounced as in English.]

A very comfortable house was Lawton's, after we did reach it--carpeted,
and with a warm stove--in fact, quite in civilized style. Mr. Weeks,
the man who brought us across, was the major-domo, during the temporary
absence of Mr. Lawton.

Mrs. Lawton was a young woman, and not ill-looking. She complained
bitterly of the loneliness of her condition, and having been "brought
out there into the woods; which was a thing she had not expected, when
she came from the East." We did not ask her with what expectations she
had come to a wild, unsettled country; but we tried to comfort her with
the assurance that things would grow better in a few years. She said,
"she did not mean to wait for that. She should go back to her family in
the East, if Mr. Lawton did not invite some of her young friends to
come and stay with her, and make it agreeable."

We could hardly realize, on rising the following morning, that only
twelve miles of prairie intervened between us and _Chicago le Desiré_,
as I could not but name it.

We could look across the extended plain, and on its farthest verge
were visible two tall trees, which my husband pointed out to me as
the planting of his own hand, when a boy. Already they had become so
lofty as to serve as landmarks, and they were constantly in view as
we travelled the beaten road. I was continually repeating to myself,
"There live the friends I am so longing to see! There will terminate
all our trials and hardships!"

A Mr. Wentworth joined us on the road, and of him we inquired after the
welfare of the family, from whom we had, for a long time, received no
intelligence. When we reached Chicago, he took us to a little tavern
at the forks of the river. This portion of the place was then called
_Wolf Point_, from its having been the residence of an Indian named
"_Moaway_," or "the Wolf."

"Dear me," said the old landlady, at the little tavern, "what dreadful
cold weather you must have had to travel in! Why, two days ago the
river was all open here, and now it's frozen hard enough for folks to
cross a-horseback!"

Notwithstanding this assurance, my husband did not like to venture, so
he determined to leave his horses and proceed on foot, to the residence
of his mother and sister, a distance of about half a mile.

We set out on our walk, which was first across the ice, then down the
northern bank of the river. As we approached the house we were espied
by Genéviève, a half-breed servant of the family. She did not wait to
salute us, but flew into the house crying.

"Oh! Madame Kinzie, who do you think has come? Monsieur John and Madame
John, all the way from Fort Winnebago on foot!"

Soon we were in the arms of our dear, kind friends. A messenger was
dispatched to "the garrison" for the remaining members of the family,
and for that day at least, I was the wonder and admiration of the whole
circle, "for the dangers I had seen."

[Illustration: CHICAGO IN 1820.

From a sketch by H. R. Schoolcraft, in "Indian Tribes," vol. iv., p.

[Illustration: Copy of the First Map of Chicago. The Original, Made by
James Thompson August 4, 1830, was Destroyed in Chicago Fire, October
9, 1871.

Copy in Possession of Chicago Historical Society.]

[Illustration: CHICAGO IN 1831.

From a sketch by Mrs. Kinzie, in original edition.]



Fort Dearborn at that day consisted of the same buildings as at
present.[62] They were, of course, in a better state of preservation,
though still considerably dilapidated. They had been erected in 1816,
under the supervision of Captain Hezekiah Bradley, and there was a
story current that, such was his patriotic regard for the interests of
the government, he obliged the soldiers to fashion wooden pins, instead
of spikes and nails, to fasten the timbers of the buildings, and that
he even called on the junior officers to aid in their construction
along with the soldiers, whose business it was. If this were true, the
captain must have labored under the delusion (excusable in one who
had lived long on the frontier) that the government would thank its
servants for any excess of economical zeal.

The fort was inclosed by high pickets, with bastions at the alternate
angles. Large gates opened to the north and south, and there were small
portions here and there for the accommodation of the inmates. The bank
of the river which stretches to the west, now covered by the lighthouse
buildings, and inclosed by docks, was then occupied by the root-houses
of the garrison. Beyond the parade-ground which extended south of the
pickets, were the company gardens, well filled with currant-bushes and
young fruit-trees.

The fort stood at what might naturally be supposed to be the mouth
of the river, yet it was not so, for in those days the latter took
a turn, sweeping round the promontory on which the fort was built,
towards the south, and joined the lake about half a mile below; so that
these buildings, in fact, stood on the right bank of the river, the
left being formed by a long spit of land extending from the northern
shore, of which it formed a part. After the cutting through of tills
portion of the left bank in 1833 by the United States Engineers
employed to construct a harbor at this point, and the throwing out
of the piers, the water overflowed this long tongue of land, and
continually encroaching on the southern bank, robbed it of many
valuable acres; while, by the same action of the vast body of the lake,
an accretion was constantly taking place on the north of the harbor.

The residence of Jean Baptiste Beaubien[63] stood at this period
between the gardens and the river-bank, and still further south was
a rickety tenement, built many years before by Mr. John Dean, the
sutler of the post. A short time after the commencement of the growth
of Chicago, the foundations of this building were undermined by the
gradual encroachment of the lake, and it tumbled backward down the
bank, where it long lay, a melancholy spectacle.

On the northern bank of the river, directly facing the fort, was the
family mansion of my husband. It was a long, low building, with a
piazza extending along its front, a range of four or five rooms. A
broad green space was inclosed between it and the river, and shaded
by a row of Lombardy poplars. Two immense cotton-wood trees stood in
the rear of the building, one of which still remains as an ancient
landmark. A fine, well-cultivated garden extended to the north of the
dwelling, and surrounding it were various buildings appertaining to the
establishment--dairy, bake-house, lodging-house for the Frenchmen, and

A vast range of sand-hills, covered with stunted cedars, pines, and
dwarf-willow trees, intervened between the house and the lake, which
was, at this time, not more than thirty rods distant.

Proceeding from this point, along the northern bank of the river,
we came first to the Agency House, "Cobweb Castle," as it had been
denominated while long the residence of a bachelor, and the _sobriquet_
adhered to it ever after. It stood at what is now the south-west
corner of Wolcott and N. Water streets. Many will still remember it, a
substantial, compact little building of logs hewed and squared, with
a centre, two wings, and, strictly speaking, two _tails_, since, when
there was found no more room for additions at the sides, they were
placed in the rear, whereon a vacant spot could be found.

These appendages did not mar the symmetry of the whole, as viewed from
the front, but when, in the process of the town's improvement, a street
was maliciously opened directly in the rear of the building, the whole
establishment, with its comical little adjuncts, was a constant source
of amusement to the passers-by. No matter. There were pleasant, happy
hours passed under its odd-shaped roof, as many of Chicago's early
settlers can testify.

Around the Agency House were grouped a collection of log-buildings,
the residences of the different persons in the employ of Government,
appertaining to that establishment--blacksmith, striker, and
laborers. These were for the most part Canadians or half-breeds, with
occasionally a stray Yankee, to set all things going by his activity
and enterprise.

There was still another house on the north side of the river, built by
a former resident of the name of Miller, but he had removed to "Rivière
du Chemin," or Trail Creek, which about this time began to be called
"Michigan City."[U] This house, which stood near the forks of the
river, was at this time vacant.

[Footnote U: I can now recall a petition that was circulated at the
garrison about this period, for "building a brigg over Michigan City."
By altering the orthography, it was found to mean, not the stupendous
undertaking it would seem to imply, but simply "building a bridge over
at Michigan City." An accommodation much needed by travellers at that

There was no house on the southern bank of the river, between the fort
and "The Point," as the forks of the river were then called. The land
was a low wet prairie, scarcely affording good walking in the dryest
summer weather, while at other seasons it was absolutely impassable. A
muddy streamlet, or as it is called in this country, a _slew_,[V] after
winding around from about the present site of the Tremont House, fell
into the river at the foot of State street.[W]

[Footnote V: The proper orthography of this word is undoubtedly
_slough_, as it invariably indicates something like that which
Christian fell into in flying from the City of Destruction. I spell it,
however, as it is pronounced.]

[Footnote W: A gentleman who visited Chicago at that day, thus speaks
of it: "I passed over the ground from the fort to the point, on
horseback. I was up to my stirrups in water the whole distance. I would
not have given sixpence an acre for the whole of it."]

At a point, on the south side, stood a house just completed by Mark
Beaubien, sen.[64] It was a pretentious white two-story building, with
bright blue wooden shutters, the admiration of all the little circle at
Wolf Point. Here a canoe ferry was kept to transport people across the
south branch of the river.

Facing down the river from the west was, first a small tavern kept
by Mr. Wentworth, familiarly known as "Old Geese," not from any
want of shrewdness on his part, but in compliment to one of his own
cant expressions. Near him were two or three log-cabins occupied by
Robinson, the Pottowattamie chief, and some of his wife's connexions.
Billy Caldwell, the Sau-ga-nash, too, resided here occasionally, with
his wife, who was a daughter of Nee-scot-nee-meg, one of the most
famous chiefs of the nation. A little remote from these residences was
a small square log building, originally designed for a school-house,
but occasionally used as a place of worship whenever any itinerant
minister presented himself.

The family of Clybourn had, previous to this time, established
themselves near their present residence on the North Branch--they
called their place _New Virginia_. Four miles up the South Branch was
an old building which was at that time an object of great interest as
having been the theatre of some stirring events during the troubles of
1812.[X] It was denominated Lee's Place, or Hardscrabble. Here lived,
at this time, a settler named Heacock.

[Footnote X: See Narrative of the Massacre, p. 155.]

Owing to the badness of the roads a greater part of the year, the usual
mode of communication between the fort and "The Point" was by a boat
rowed up the river, or by a canoe paddled by some skilful hand. By the
latter means, too, an intercourse was kept up between the residents of
the fort and the Agency House.

There were, at this time, two companies of soldiers in the garrison,
but of the officers one. Lieutenant Furman, had died the autumn
previous, and several of the others were away on furlough. In the
absence of Major Fowle and Capt. Scott, the command devolved on Lieut.
Hunter. Besides him, there were Lieuts. Engle and Foster--the latter
unmarried. Dr. Finley, the post surgeon, was also absent, and his place
was supplied by Dr. Harmon, a gentleman from Vermont.

[Illustration: MARK BEAUBIEN.

From crayon portrait in possession of Chicago Historical Society.]

My husband's mother, two sisters, and brother resided at the Agency
House--the family residence near the lake being occupied by J. N.
Bailey, the postmaster.

In the Dean House lived a Mr. and Mrs. Forbes, who kept a school.
Gholson Kercheval had a small trading establishment in one of the log
buildings at "Wolf Point," and John S. C. Hogan superintended the
sutler's store in the garrison.

There was also a Mr. Lee lately come into the country, living at the
Point, who sometimes held forth in the little school-house on a Sunday,
less to the edification of his hearers than to the unmerciful slaughter
of the "King's English."[65]

I think this enumeration comprises all the white inhabitants of
Chicago, at a period less than a quarter of a century ago. To many
who may read these pages the foregoing particulars will, doubtless,
appear uninteresting. But to those who visit Chicago, and still more,
to those who come to make it their home, it may be not without interest
to look back to its first beginnings; to contemplate the almost magical
change which a few years have wrought; and from the past to augur the
marvellous prosperity of the future.

The origin of the name Chicago is a subject of discussion, some of
the Indians deriving it from the fitch or pole-cat, others from the
wild onion with which the woods formerly abounded; but all agree that
the place received its name from an old chief, who was drowned in
the stream in former times. That this event, although so carefully
preserved by tradition, must have occurred in a very remote period, is
evident from an old French manuscript brought by Gen. Cass from France.

In this paper, which purports to be a letter from M. de Ligney, at
Green Bay, to M. de Siette, among the Illinois, dated as early as 1726,
the place is designated as "Chicagoux." This orthography is also found
in old family letters of the beginning of the present century.[66]

       *       *       *       *       *

In giving the early history of Chicago, the Indians say, with great
simplicity, "the first white man who settled here was a negro."

This was Jean Baptiste Point-au-Sable, a native of St. Domingo, who,
about the year 1796, found his way to this remote region, and commenced
a life among the Indians. There is usually a strong affection between
these two races, and Jean Baptiste imposed upon his new friends
by making them believe that he had been a "great chief" among the
whites. Perhaps he was disgusted at not being elected to a similar
dignity by the Pottowattamies, for he quitted this vicinity, and
finally terminated his days at Peoria, under the roof of his friend
"Glamorgan," another St. Domingo negro, who had obtained large Spanish
grants in St. Louis and its environs, and who, at one time, was in the
enjoyment of an extensive landed estate.

Point-au-Sable had made some improvements at Chicago, which were taken
possession of by a Frenchman named Le Mai, who commenced trading with
the Indians. After a few years Le Mai's establishment was purchased
by John Kinzie, Esq.,[67] who at that time resided at Bertrand, or
_Parc aux Vaches_, as it was then called, near Niles, in Michigan. As
this gentleman was, for nearly twenty years, with the exception of
the military, the only white inhabitant of Northern Illinois, some
particulars of his early life may not be uninteresting.

[Illustration: Map of Chicago Portage, from the First U. S. Government
Survey, Circa 1820.

In Possession of Chicago Historical Society.]

He was born in Quebec (L. C.) in 1763. His mother had been previously
married to a gentleman of the name of Haliburton. The only daughter
of this marriage was the mother of Gen. Fleming and Nicholas Low,
Esq., of New York. She is described as a lady of remarkable beauty and
accomplishments. Mr. Kinzie was the only child of the second marriage.
His father died in his infancy, and his mother married a third time a
Mr. Forsyth, after which they removed to the city of New York.

At the age of ten or eleven years he was placed at school with two of
his half-brothers at Williamsburg, L. I. A negro servant was sent from
the city every Saturday, to bring the children home, to remain until
the following Monday morning. Upon on occasion, when the messenger
arrived at the school he found all things in commotion. Johnny Kinzie
was missing! Search was made in all directions; every place was
ransacked. It was all in vain; no Johnny Kinzie could be found.

The heavy tidings were carried home to his mother. By some it was
supposed the lad was drowned; by others that he had strayed away,
and would return. Weeks passed by, and months, and he was at length
given up and mourned as lost. In the meantime the boy was fulfilling a
determination he had long formed, to visit his native city of Quebec,
and make his way in life for himself.

He had by some means succeeded in crossing from Williamsburg to the
city of New York, and finding at one of the docks on the North River
a sloop bound for Albany, he took passage on board of her. While on
his way up the river, he was noticed by a gentleman, who, taking an
interest in the little lonely passenger, questioned him about his

"He was going to Quebec, where he had some friends."

"Had he the means to carry him there?"

"Not much, but he thought he could get along."

It happened, fortunately, that the gentleman himself was going to
Quebec. He took the boy under his care, paid his expenses the whole
distance, and finally parted with him in the streets of the city, where
he was, in truth, a stranger.

He wandered about for a time, looking into various "stores" and
workshops. At length, on entering the shop of a silversmith, he was
satisfied with the expression he read in the countenance of the master,
and he inquired if he wanted an apprentice.

"What, you, my little fellow! What can you do?"

"Anything you can teach me."

"Well, we will make a trial and see."

The trial was satisfactory. He remained in the family of his kind
friend for more than three years, when his parents, who, in removing to
Detroit, had necessarily returned to Canada, discovered his place of
abode, and he was restored to them.

There were five younger half-brothers of the name of Forsyth. In the
old family Bible, we find the following touching record of an event
that occurred after the family had removed to Detroit:

"George Forsyth was lost in the woods 6th August, 1775, when Henry Hays
and Mark Stirling ran away and left him. The remains of George Forsyth
were found by an Indian the 2d of October, 1776, close by the Prairie

It seems a singular fatality that the unhappy mother should have been
twice called to suffer a similar affliction--the loss of a child in a
manner worse than death, inasmuch as it left room for all the horrors
that imagination can suggest. The particulars of the loss of this
little brother were these. As he came from school one evening, he met
the colored servant boy on horseback, going to the common for the cows.
The school-house stood quite near the old fort, and all beyond that,
all that now lies west of Fort street, was a wild, uncultivated tract
called "The Common." The child begged of the servant to take him up
and give him a ride, but the other refused, bidding him return home
at once. He was accompanied by two other boys, somewhat older, and
together they followed the negro for some distance, hoping to prevail
upon him to give them a ride. As it grew dark, the two older boys
turned back, but the other kept on. When the negro returned he had
not again seen the child, nor were any tidings ever received of him,
notwithstanding the diligent search made by the whole little community,
until, as related in the record, his remains were found the following
year by an Indian. There was nothing to identify them, except the
auburn curls of his hair, and the little boots he had worn. He must
have perished very shortly after having lost his way, for the Prairie
Ronde was too near the settlement to have prevented his hearing the
calls and sounding horns of those in search of him.

Mr. Kinzie's enterprising and adventurous disposition led him, as
he grew older, to live much on the frontier. He early entered into
the Indian trade, and had establishments at Sandusky and Maumee, and
afterwards pushed further west, about the year 1800, to St. Joseph's.
In this year he married Mrs. McKillip, the widow of a British officer,
and in 1804 came to make his home at Chicago. It was in this year that
the first fort was built.

By degrees more remote trading-posts were established by him, all
contributing to the parent one at Chicago; at Milwaukie with the
Meenomonees; at Rock River with the Winnebagoes and the Pottowattamies;
on the Illinois River and Kankakee with the Pottowattamies of the
Prairies, and with the Kickapoos in what was called "_Le Large_," being
the widely extended district afterwards erected into Sangamon County.

Each trading-post had its superintendent, and its complement of
engagés--its train of pack-horses and its equipment of boats and
canoes. From most of the stations the "fur and peltries" were brought
to Chicago on pack-horses, and the goods necessary for the trade were
transported in return by the same method.

The vessels which came in the spring and fall (seldom more than two
or three annually), to bring the supplies and goods for the trade,
took the furs that were already collected to Mackinac, a depôt of the
South-West and American Fur Companies. At other seasons they were sent
to that place in boats, coasting around the lake.[68]

       *       *       *       *       *

Of the Canadian voyageurs or engagés, a race that has now so nearly
passed away, some notice may very properly here be given.

They were unlike any other class of men. Like the poet, they seemed
born to their vocation. Sturdy, enduring, ingenious, and light-hearted,
they possessed a spirit capable of adapting itself to any emergency.
No difficulties baffled, no hardships discouraged them; while their
affectionate nature led them to form attachments of the warmest
character to their "bourgeois," or master, as well as to the native
inhabitants, among whom their engagements carried them.


(The first house built in Chicago.) From sketch by Mrs. Kinzie, in
original edition.]

Montreal, or according to their own pronunciation, _Marrialle_, was
their depôt. It was at that place that the agents commissioned to make
up the quota for the different companies and traders found the material
for their selections.

The terms of engagement were usually from four to six hundred livres
(ancient Quebec currency) per annum as wages, with rations of one quart
of lyed corn, and two ounces of tallow per diem, or "its equivalent in
whatever sort of food is to be found in the Indian country."

Instances have been known of their submitting cheerfully to fare upon
fresh fish and maple sugar for a whole winter, when cut off from other

It was a common saying, "Keep an engagé to his corn and tallow, he will
serve you well--give him pork and bread, and he soon gets beyond your
management." They regard the terms of their engagement as binding to
the letter. An old trader, M. Berthelet, engaged a crew at Montreal.
The terms of agreement were, that they should eat when their bourgeois
did, and what he did. It was a piece of fun on the part of the old
gentleman, but the simple Canadians believed it to be a signal instance
of good luck that had provided them such luxurious prospects. The
bourgeois stuffed his pockets with crackers, and when sure of being
quite unobserved, would slyly eat one. Pipe after pipe passed--the men
grew hungry, but observing that there were no preparations of a meal
for the bourgeois, they bore their fast without complaining.

At length the matter became too serious--they could stand it no
longer. In their distress they begged off from the bargain, and gladly
compounded to take the customary rations, instead of the dainty fare
they had been promising themselves with their master.

On arriving at Mackinac, which was the entrepôt of the Fur Trade, a
small proportion of the voyageur's wages was advanced him, to furnish
his winter's outfit, his pipes and tobacco, his needles and thread,
some pieces of bright-colored ribbons, and red and yellow gartering
(quality binding), with which to purchase their little necessaries from
the Indians. To these, if his destination were Lake Superior, or a post
far to the north, where such articles could not be readily obtained,
were added one or two smoked deer-skins for moccasins.

Thus equipped, he entered upon his three years' service, to toil by
day, and laugh, joke, sing, and tell stories when the evening hour
brought rest and liberty.

There was not wanting here and there an instance of obstinate adherence
to the exact letter of the agreement in regard to the nature of
employment, although, as a general thing, the engagé held himself ready
to fulfil the behests of his bourgeois, as faithfully as ever did
vassal those of his chief.

A story is told of M. St. Jean, a trader on the Upper Mississippi, who
upon a certain occasion ordered one of his Frenchmen to accompany a
party to the forest to chop wood. The man refused. "He was not hired,"
he said, "to chop wood."

"Ah! for what then were you hired?"

"To steer a boat."

"Very well; steer a boat, then, since you prefer it."

It was mid-winter. The recusant was marched to the river-side, and
placed in the stern of the boat, which lay fastened in the ice.

After serving a couple of hours at his legitimate employment, with the
thermometer below zero, he was quite content to take his place with the
chopping-party, and never again thought it good policy to choose work
for himself.

There is an aristocracy in the voyageur service which is quite amusing.
The engagement is usually made for three years. The engagé of the
first year, who is called a "_mangeur-de-lard_," or pork-eater, is
looked down upon with the most sovereign contempt by an "_hivernant_,"
or one who has already passed a winter in the country. He will not
only not associate with him, but if invited by him to join him in
a friendly glass, he will make some excuse for declining. The most
inveterate drunkard, while tortured by a longing to partake his
favorite indulgence, will yet never suffer himself to be enticed into
an infringement of this custom.

After the first winter, the _mangeur-de-lard_ rises from his freshman
class, and takes his place where he can in turn lord it over all

Another peculiarity of the class is their fancy for transforming
the names of their bourgeois into something funny, which resembles
it in sound. Thus Kinzie would be called by one "_Quinze nez_"
(fifteen noses), by another "_Singé_" (monkeyfied). Mr. Kercheval was
denominated "_Mons. Court-cheval_" (short horse), the Judge of Probate,
"_le Juge Trop-bête_" (too foolish), &c. &c. The following is an
instance in point.

Mr. Shaw, one of the agents of the Northwest Fur Company, had passed
many years on the frontier, and was by the voyageurs called Monsieur Le
Chat.[Y] On quitting the Indian country he married a Canadian lady and
became the father of several children. Some years after his return to
Canada, his old foreman, named Louis la Liberté, went to Montreal to
spend the winter. He had heard of his old bourgeois' marriage, and was
anxious to see him.

[Footnote Y: Mr. Cat.]

Mr. Shaw was walking in the Champ de Mars with a couple of officers
when La Liberté espied him. He immediately ran up, and seizing him by
both hands, accosted him--

"_Ah! mon cher Mons. le Chat; comment vous portez vous?_"

"_Tres bien, Louizon._"

"_Et comment se porte Madame la Chatte?_" (How is the mother cat?)

"_Bien, bien, Louizon; elle est tres bien._" (She is very well.)

"_Et tous les petits Chatons?_" (And all the kittens?)

This was too much for Mr. Shaw. He answered shortly that the kittens
were all well, and bidding him call at his house, turned away with
his military friends, leaving poor Louizon quite astonished at the
abruptness of his departure.

       *       *       *       *       *

Cut off, in the manner described, from the world at large, with no
society but the military, thus lived the family of Mr. Kinzie, in great
contentment, and in the enjoyment of all the comforts, together with
most of the luxuries of life.

The Indians reciprocated the friendship that was shown them, and formed
for them an attachment of no ordinary strength, as was manifested
during the scenes of the year 1812, eight years after Mr. Kinzie came
to live among them.

Some of the most prominent events of that year are recorded in the
following Narrative.



[Footnote Z: This Narrative is substantially the same as that published
in pamphlet form, in 1836. It was transferred with little variation to
Brown's "History of Illinois," and to a work called "Western Annals."
It was likewise made, by Major Richardson, the basis of his two tales,
"Hardscrabble," and "Wau-nan-gee."]

It was the evening of the 7th April, 1812. The children of Mr. Kinzie
were dancing before the fire to the music of their father's violin.
The tea-table was spread, and they were awaiting the return of their
mother, who had gone to visit a sick neighbor about a quarter of a mile
up the river.

Suddenly their sports were interrupted. The door was thrown open,
and Mrs. Kinzie rushed in, pale with terror and scarcely able to
articulate, "The Indians! the Indians!"

"The Indians? What? Where?" eagerly demanded they all.

"Up at Lee's place, killing and scalping!"

With difficulty Mrs. Kinzie composed herself sufficiently to give the
information, "That while she was up at Burns', a man and a boy were
seen running down with all speed on the opposite side of the river;
that they had called across to give notice to Burns' family to save
themselves, for _the Indians_ were at Lee's Place, from which they had
just made their escape." Having given this terrifying news, they had
made all speed for the fort, which was on the same side of the river
that they then were.

All was now consternation and dismay. The family were hurried into two
old _pirogues_, that were moored near the house, and paddled with all
possible haste across the river to take refuge in the fort.

All that the man and boy who had made their escape were able to tell,
was soon known; but in order to render their story more intelligible,
it is necessary to describe the scene of action.

_Lee's Place_, since known by the name of Hardscrabble, was a farm
intersected by the Chicago River, about four miles from its mouth. The
farm-house stood on the western bank of the south branch of this river.
On the same side of the main stream, but quite near its junction with
Lake Michigan, stood (as has already been described) the dwelling-house
and trading establishment of Mr. Kinzie.

The fort was situated on the southern bank, directly opposite this
mansion--the river, and a few rods of sloping green turf on either
side, being all that intervened between them.

The fort was differently constructed from the one erected on the same
site in 1816. It had two block-houses on the southern side, and on the
northern a sally-port, or subterranean passage from the parade ground
to the river. This was designed either to facilitate escape, in case of
an emergency, or as a means of supplying the garrison with water during
a siege.

The officers in the fort at this period were Capt. Heald, the
commanding officer, Lieut. Helm, the son-in-law of Mr. Kinzie, and
Ensign Ronan--the two last were very young men--and the surgeon. Dr.
Van Voorhees.

The command numbered about seventy-five men; very few of whom were

[Illustration: OLD FORT DEARBORN, 1803-1812.

From a sketch by Charles H. Ourand, based upon plans drawn by Capt. J.
Whistler, 1808, in possession of Chicago Historical Society.]

A constant and friendly intercourse had been maintained between these
troops and the Indians. It is true that the principal men of the
Pottowattamie nation, like those of most other tribes, went yearly to
Fort Maiden, in Canada, to receive a large amount of presents, with
which the British Government had, for many years, been in the habit
of purchasing their alliance; and it was well known that many of the
Pottowattamies, as well as Winnebagoes, had been engaged with the
Ottawas and Shawnees at the battle of Tippecanoe, the preceding autumn;
yet, as the principal chiefs of all the bands in the neighborhood
appeared to be on the most amicable terms with the Americans, no
interruption of their harmony was at any time anticipated.

After the 15th August, however, many circumstances were recollected
that might have opened the eyes of the whites, had they not been lulled
in a fatal security. One instance in particular may be mentioned.

In the spring preceding the destruction of the fort, two Indians of the
Calumet band came to the fort on a visit to the Commanding Officer. As
they passed through the quarters, they saw Mrs. Heald and Mrs. Helm
playing at battledoor.

Turning to the interpreter, one of them, Nau-non-gee, remarked: "The
white chiefs' wives are amusing themselves very much; it will not be
long before they are hoeing in our cornfields!"

This was considered at the time an idle threat, or at most, an
ebullition of jealous feeling at the contrast between the situation
of their own women and that of the "white chiefs' wives." Some months
after, how bitterly was it remembered!

       *       *       *       *       *

The farm at Lee's Place was occupied by a Mr. White, and three persons
employed by him in the care of the farm.

In the afternoon of the day on which our narrative commences, a
party of ten or twelve Indians, dressed and painted, arrived at the
house, and according to the custom among savages, entered and seated
themselves without ceremony.

Something in their appearance and manner excited the suspicions of one
of the family, a Frenchman, who remarked, "I do not like the appearance
of these Indians--they are none of our folks. I know by their dress and
paint that they are not Pottowattamies."

Another of the family, a discharged soldier, then said to the boy who
was present, "If that is the case, we had better get away from them if
we can. Say nothing; but do as you see me do."

As the afternoon was far advanced, the soldier walked leisurely towards
the canoes, of which there were two tied near the bank. Some of the
Indians inquired where he was going. He pointed to the cattle which
were standing among the haystacks on the opposite bank; and made signs
that they must go and fodder them, and then they should return and get
their supper.

He got into one canoe, and the boy into the other. The stream was
narrow, and they were soon across. When they had gained the opposite
side, they pulled some hay for the cattle--made a show of collecting
them--and when they had gradually made a circuit, so that their
movements were concealed by the haystacks, they took to the woods,
which were close at hand, and made for the fort.

They had run about a quarter of a mile, when they heard the discharge
of two guns successively, which they supposed to have been leveled at
the companions they had left behind.

They stopped not nor stayed until they arrived opposite Burns',[AA]
where, as before related, they called across to advise the family of
their danger, and then hastened on to the fort.

[Footnote AA: Burns' house stood near the spot where the Agency
building, or "Cobweb Castle," was afterwards erected.]

It now occurred to those who had secured their own safety, that the
family of Burns was at this moment exposed to the most imminent peril.
The question was, who would hazard his own life to bring them to a
place of safety? A gallant young officer. Ensign Ronan, volunteered,
with a party of five or six soldiers, to go to their rescue.

They ascended the river in a scow, took the mother, with her infant of
scarcely a day old, upon her bed to the boat, in which they carefully
conveyed her and the other members of the family to the fort.

A party of soldiers, consisting of a corporal and six men, had that
afternoon obtained leave to go up the river to fish.

They had not returned when the fugitives from Lee's Place arrived
at the fort, and fearing that they might encounter the Indians, the
commanding officer ordered a cannon to be fired, to warn them of danger.

They were at the time about two miles above Lee's Place. Hearing the
signal, they took the hint, put out their torches (for it was now
night), and dropped down the river toward the garrison, as silently as
possible. It will be remembered that the unsettled state of the country
since the battle of Tippecanoe, the preceding November, had rendered
every man vigilant, and the slightest alarm was an admonition to beware
of "the Indians."

When the fishing-party reached Lee's Place, it was proposed to stop
and warn the inmates to be upon their guard, as the signal from the
fort indicated danger of some kind. All was still as death around the
house. They groped their way along, and as the corporal jumped over the
small enclosure, he placed his hand upon the dead body of a man. By the
sense of touch he soon ascertained that the head was without a scalp,
and otherwise mutilated. The faithful dog of the murdered man stood
guarding the lifeless remains of his master.

The tale was now told. They retreated to their canoes and reached the
fort unmolested about eleven o'clock at night. The next morning a
party of the citizens and soldiers volunteered to go to Lee's Place,
to learn further the fate of its occupants. The body of Mr. White was
found pierced by two balls, and with eleven stabs in the breast. The
Frenchman, as already described, lay dead, with his dog still beside
Mm. Their bodies were brought to the fort and buried in its immediate

It was subsequently ascertained, from traders out in the Indian
country, that the perpetrators of this bloody deed were a party of
Winnebagoes, who had come into this neighborhood to "take some white
scalps." Their plan had been, to proceed down the river from Lee's
Place, and kill every white man without the walls of the fort. Hearing,
however, the report of the camion, and not knowing what it portended,
they thought it best to remain satisfied with this one exploit, and
forthwith retreated to their homes on Rock River.

The inhabitants outside the fort, consisting of a few discharged
soldiers and some families of half-breeds, now entrenched themselves in
the Agency House. This stood on the esplanade west of the fort, between
the pickets and the river, and distant about twenty rods from the

[Footnote AB: The present site of the lighthouse.]

It was an old-fashioned log-building, with a hall running through the
centre, and one large room on each side. Piazzas extended the whole
length of the building in front and rear. These were planked up, for
greater security, port-holes were cut, and sentinels posted at night.

As the enemy were believed to be lurking still in the neighborhood, or,
emboldened by former success, likely to return at any moment, an order
was issued prohibiting any soldier or citizen from leaving the vicinity
of the garrison without a guard.

One night a sergeant and private, who were out on a patrol, came
suddenly upon a party of Indians in the pasture adjoining the
esplanade. The sergeant fired his piece, and both retreated toward the
fort. Before they could reach it, an Indian threw his tomahawk, which
missed the sergeant and struck a wagon standing near. The sentinel from
the block-house immediately fired, and with effect, while the men got
safely in. The next morning it was ascertained, from traces of blood to
a considerable distance into the prairie, and from the appearance of
a body having been laid among the long grass, that some execution had
been done.

On another occasion the enemy entered the esplanade to steal horses.
Not finding them in the stable, as they had expected, they made
themselves amends for their disappointment by stabbing all the
sheep in the stable, and then letting them loose. The poor annuals
flocked towards the fort. This gave the alarm--the garrison was
aroused--parties were sent out, but the marauders escaped unmolested.

       *       *       *       *       *

The inmates of the fort experienced no further alarm for many weeks.

On the afternoon of the 7th August, Winnemeg, or _Catfish_, a
Pottowattamie chief, arrived at the post, bringing despatches from Gen.
Hull. These announced the declaration of war between the United States
and Great Britain, and that Gen. Hull, at the head of the North-Western
army, had arrived at Detroit; also, that the island of Mackinac had
fallen into the hands of the British.

The orders to Captain Heald were, "to evacuate the fort, if
practicable, and in that event, to distribute all the United States'
property contained in the fort, and in the United States' factory or
agency, among the Indians in the neighborhood."

After having delivered his despatches, Winnemeg requested a private
interview with Mr. Kinzie, who had taken up his residence in the
fort. He stated to Mr. K. that he was acquainted with the purport
of the communications he had brought, and begged him to ascertain
if it were the intention of Captain Heald to evacuate the post. He
advised strongly against such a step, inasmuch as the garrison was
well supplied with ammunition, and with provisions for six months.
It would, therefore, be far better, he thought, to remain until a
reinforcement could be sent to their assistance. If, however. Captain
Heald should decide upon leaving the post, it should by all means be
done immediately. The Pottowattamies, through whose country they must
pass, being ignorant of the object of Winnemeg's mission, a forced
march might be made, before those who were hostile in their feelings
were prepared to interrupt them.

Of this advice, so earnestly given, Captain Heald was immediately
informed. He replied that it was his intention to evacuate the post,
but that, inasmuch as he had received orders to distribute the United
States' property, he should not feel justified in leaving it until he
had collected the Indians of the neighborhood, and made an equitable
division among them.

Winnemeg then suggested the expediency of marching out, and leaving
all things standing--possibly while the Indians were engaged in
the partition of the spoils, the troops might effect their retreat
unmolested. This advice was strongly seconded by Mr. Kinzie, but did
not meet the approbation of the Commanding Officer.

The order for evacuating the post was read next morning upon parade.
It is difficult to understand why Captain Heald, in such an emergency,
omitted the usual form of calling a council of war with his officers.
It can only be accounted for by the fact of a want of harmonious
feeling between himself and one of his junior officers--Ensign Ronan,
a high-spirited and somewhat overbearing, but brave and generous young

In the course of the day, finding that no council was called, the
officers waited on Captain Heald to be informed what course he intended
to pursue. When they learned his intentions, they remonstrated with
him, on the following grounds:

First--It was highly improbable that the command would be permitted to
pass through the country in safety to Fort Wayne. For although it had
been said that some of the chiefs had opposed an attack upon the fort,
planned the preceding autumn, yet it was well known that they had been
actuated in that matter by motives of private regard to one family, and
not to any general friendly feeling toward the Americans; and that, at
any rate, it was hardly to be expected that these few individuals would
be able to control the whole tribe, who were thirsting for blood.

In the next place--their march must necessarily be slow, as their
movements must be accommodated to the helplessness of the women and
children, of whom there were a number with the detachment. That
of their small force, some of the soldiers were superannuated,
others invalid; therefore, since the course to be pursued was left
discretional, their unanimous advice was, to remain where they were,
and fortify themselves as strongly as possible. Succors from the other
side of the peninsula might arrive before they could be attacked by the
British from Mackinac, and even should there not, it were far better
to fall into the hands of the latter than to become the victims of the

Captain Heald argued in reply, "that a special order had been issued
by the war department, that no post should be surrendered without
battle having been given, and his force was totally inadequate to an
engagement with the Indians. That he should unquestionably be censured
for remaining, when there appeared a prospect of a safe march through;
and that, upon the whole, he deemed it expedient to assemble the
Indians, distribute the property among them, and then ask of them an
escort to Fort Wayne, with the promise of a considerable reward upon
their safe arrival--adding, that he had full confidence in the friendly
professions of the Indians, from whom, as well as from the soldiers,
the capture of Mackinac had been kept a profound secret."

From this time the officers held themselves aloof, and spoke but little
upon the subject, though they considered the project of Captain Heald
little short of madness. The dissatisfaction among the soldiers hourly
increased, until it reached a high pitch of insubordination.

Upon one occasion, as Captain Heald was conversing with Mr. Kinzie
upon the parade, he remarked, "I could not remain, even if I thought it
best, for I have but a small store of provisions."

"Why, captain," said a soldier who stood near, forgetting all etiquette
in the excitement of the moment, "you have cattle enough to last the
troops six months."

"But," replied Captain Heald, "I have no salt to preserve it with."

"Then jerk[AC] it," said the man, "as the Indians do their venison."

[Footnote AC: This is done by cutting the meat in thin slices, placing
it upon a scaffold, and making a fire under it, which dries it and
smokes it at the same time.]

The Indians now became daily more unruly. Entering the fort in defiance
of the sentinels, they made their way without ceremony into the
officers' quarters. On one occasion, an Indian took up a rifle and
fired it in the parlor of the Commanding Officer, as an expression
of defiance. Some were of opinion that this was intended among the
young men as a signal for an attack. The old chiefs passed backwards
and forwards among the assembled groups, with the appearance of the
most lively agitation, while the squaws rushed to and fro, in great
excitement, and evidently prepared for some fearful scene.

Any further manifestation of ill-feeling was, however, suppressed for
the present, and Captain Heald, strange as it may seem, continued to
entertain a conviction of having created so amicable a disposition
among the Indians, as would insure the safety of the command on their
march to Fort Wayne.

Thus passed the time until the 12th August. The feelings of the inmates
of the fort during this time may be better imagined than described.
Each morning that dawned seemed to bring them nearer that most
appalling fate--butchery by a savage foe--and at night they scarcely
dared yield to slumber, lest they should be aroused by the war-whoop
and tomahawk. Gloom and mistrust prevailed, and the want of unanimity
among the officers, debarred them the consolation they might have found
in mutual sympathy and encouragement.

The Indians being assembled from the neighboring villages, a council
was held with them on the afternoon of the 12th. Captain Heald only,
attended on the part of the military. He requested his officers to
accompany him, but they declined. They had been secretly informed that
it was the intention of the young chiefs to fall upon the officers and
massacre them while in council, but they could not persuade Captain
Heald of the truth of their information. They waited therefore only
until he had left the garrison, accompanied by Mr. Kinzie, when they
took command of the block-houses which overlooked the esplanade on
which the council was held, opened the port-holes, and pointed the
cannon so as to command the whole assembly. By this means, probably,
the lives of the whites who were present in council were preserved.

In council, the Commanding Officer informed the Indians that it was
his intention to distribute among them the next day, not only the
goods lodged in the United States' Factory, but also the ammunition
and provisions, with which the garrison was well supplied. He then
requested of the Pottowattamies an escort to Fort Wayne, promising them
a liberal reward on arriving there, in addition to the presents they
were now about to receive. With many professions of friendship and
good-will, the savages assented to all he proposed, and promised all he

After the council, Mr. Kinzie, who understood well, not only the
Indian character, but the present tone of feeling among them, had a
long interview with Captain Heald, in hopes of opening his eyes to the
present posture of affairs.

He reminded him that since the troubles with the Indians upon the
Wabash and its vicinity, there had appeared a settled plan of
hostilities toward the whites, in consequence of which it had been the
policy of the Americans to withhold from them whatever would enable
them to carry on their warfare upon the defenceless inhabitants of the

Mr. Kinzie recalled to Captain Heald how that he had himself left home
for Detroit the preceding autumn, but, receiving when he had proceeded
as far as De Charme's[AD] the intelligence of the battle of Tippecanoe,
he had immediately returned to Chicago, that he might dispatch orders
to his traders to furnish no ammunition to the Indians; in consequence
of which all they had on hand was secreted, and such of the traders as
had not already started for their wintering-grounds took neither powder
nor shot with them.

[Footnote AD: A trading establishment--now Ypsilanti.]

Captain Heald was struck with the impolicy of furnishing the enemy (for
such they must now consider their old neighbors) with arms against
himself, and determined to destroy all the ammunition except what
should be necessary for the use of his own troops.

On the 13th the goods, consisting of blankets, broadcloths, calicoes,
paints, etc., were distributed, as stipulated. The same evening the
ammunition and liquor were carried, part into the sally-port, and
thrown into a well which had been dug there to supply the garrison with
water in case of emergency; the remainder was transported as secretly
as possible through the northern gate, the heads of the barrels
knocked in, and the contents poured into the river.

The same fate was shared by a large quantity of alcohol belonging to
Mr. Kinzie, which had been deposited in a warehouse near his residence
opposite the fort.

The Indians suspected what was going on, and crept, serpent-like, as
near the scene of action as possible, but a vigilant watch was kept up,
and no one was suffered to approach but those engaged in the affair.
All the muskets not necessary for the command on the march were broken
up and thrown into the well, together with the bags of shot, flints,
gunscrews, and in short, everything relating to weapons of offence.

Some relief to the general feeling of despondency was afforded by the
arrival, on the 14th of August, of Captain Wells[AE] with fifteen
friendly Miamis.

[Footnote AE: Captain Wells when a boy was stolen from his friends, the
family of Hon. Nathaniel Pope, in Kentucky. Although recovered by them,
he preferred to return and live among his new friends. He married a
Miami woman, and became a chief of the nation. He was the father of the
late Mrs. Judge Wolcott, of Maumee, O.]

Of this brave man, who forms so conspicuous a figure in our frontier
annals, it is unnecessary here to say more than that he had been
residing from his boyhood among the Indians, and consequently possessed
a perfect knowledge of their character and habits.

He had heard, at Fort Wayne, of the order for evacuating the fort at
Chicago, and knowing the hostile determination of the Pottowattamies,
he had made a rapid march across the country, to prevent the exposure
of his relative, Captain Heald, and his troops to certain destruction.

But he came "all too late." When he reached the post he found that the
ammunition had been destroyed, and the provisions given to the Indians.
There was, therefore, now no alternative, and every preparation was
made for the march of the troops on the following morning.

On the afternoon of the same day, a second council was held with the
Indians. They expressed great indignation at the destruction of the
ammunition and liquor.

Notwithstanding the precautions that had been taken to preserve
secrecy, the noise of knocking in the heads of the barrels had betrayed
the operations of the preceding night; and, so great was the quantity
of liquor thrown into the river, that the taste of the water the next
morning was, as one expressed it, "strong grog."

Murmurs and threats were everywhere heard among the savages. It was
evident that the first moment of exposure would subject the troops to
some manifestation of their disappointment and resentment.

Among the chiefs were several, who, although they shared the general
hostile feeling of their tribe toward the Americans, yet retained a
personal regard for the troops at this post, and for the few white
citizens of the place. These chiefs exerted their utmost influence to
allay the revengeful feelings of the young men, and to avert their
sanguinary designs, but without effect.

On the evening succeeding the council _Black Partridge_, a conspicuous
chief, entered the quarters of the Commanding Officer.

"Father," said he, "I come to deliver up to you the medal I wear. It
was given me by the Americans, and I have long worn it, in token of our
mutual friendship. But our young men are resolved to imbrue their hands
in the blood of the whites. I cannot restrain them, and I will not wear
a token of peace while I am compelled to act as an enemy."

Had further evidence been wanting, this circumstance would
sufficiently have proved to the devoted band, the justice of their
melancholy anticipations. Nevertheless, they went steadily on with the
necessary preparations; and amid the horrors of their situation, there
were not wanting one or two gallant hearts, who strove to encourage in
their desponding companions, the hopes of escape they were far from
indulging themselves.

Of the ammunition there had been reserved but twenty-five rounds,
beside one box of cartridges, contained in the baggage-wagons. This
must, under any circumstances of danger, have proved an inadequate
supply, but the prospect of a fatiguing march, in their present
ineffective state, forbade the troops embarrassing themselves with a
larger quantity.



The morning of the 15th arrived. All things were in readiness, and nine
o'clock was the hour named for starting.

Mr. Kinzie had volunteered to accompany the troops in their march, and
had entrusted his family to the care of some friendly Indians, who had
promised to convey them in a boat around the head of Lake Michigan to a
point[AF] on the St. Joseph's river; there to be joined by the troops,
should the prosecution of their march be permitted them.

[Footnote AF: The spot now called Bertrand, then known as _Parc aux
Vaches_, from its having been a pasture ground to an old French fort in
the neighborhood.]

Early in the morning Mr. Kinzie received a message from To-pee-nee-bee,
a chief of the St. Joseph's band, informing him that mischief
was intended by the Pottowattamies who had engaged to escort the
detachment; and urging him to relinquish his design of accompanying
the troops by land, promising him that the boat containing himself and
family should be permitted to pass in safety to St. Joseph's.

Mr. Kinzie declined according to this proposal, as he believed that his
presence might operate as a restraint upon the fury of the savages, so
warmly were the greater part of them attached to himself and his family.

The party in the boat consisted of Mrs. Kinzie and her four younger
children, their nurse Grutte,[AG] a clerk of Mr. Kinzie's, two
servants and the boatmen, besides the two Indians who acted as their
protectors. The boat started, but had scarcely reached the mouth of the
river, which, it will be recollected was here half a mile below the
fort, when another messenger from _To-pee-nee-bee_ arrived to detain
them where they were.

[Footnote AG: Afterwards Mrs. Jean Baptiste Beaubien.]

In breathless expectation sat the wife and mother. She was a woman of
uncommon energy and strength of character, yet her heart died within
her as she folded her arms around her helpless infants, and gazed upon
the march of her husband and eldest child to certain destruction.

As the troops left the fort, the band struck up the Dead March. On they
came in military array, but with solemn mien. Captain Wells took the
lead at the head of his little band of Miamis. He had blackened his
face before leaving the garrison, in token of his impending fate. They
took their route along the lake shore. When they reached a point where
commenced a range of sand-hills intervening between the prairie and the
beach, the escort of Pottowattamies, in number about five hundred, kept
the level of the prairie, instead of continuing along the beach with
the Americans and Miamis.

They had marched perhaps a mile and a half, when Captain Wells, who had
kept somewhat in advance with his Miamis, came riding furiously back.

"They are about to attack us," shouted he; "form, instantly, and charge
upon them."

Scarcely were the words uttered, when a volley was showered from among
the sand-hills. The troops were hastily brought into line, and charged
up the bank. One man, a veteran of seventy winters, fell as they
ascended. The remainder of the scene is best described in the words of
an eye-witness and participator in the tragedy, Mrs. Helm, the wife of
Captain (then Lieutenant) Helm, and step-daughter of Mr. Kinzie.

       *       *       *       *       *

"After we had left the bank the firing became general. The Miamis fled
at the outset. Their chief rode up to the Pottowattamies and said:

"'You have deceived the Americans and us. You have done a bad action,
and (brandishing his tomahawk) I will be the first to head a party of
Americans to return and punish your treachery.' So saying, he galloped
after his companions, who were now scouring across the prairies.

"The troops behaved most gallantly. They were but a handful, but they
seemed resolved to sell their lives as dearly as possible. Our horses
pranced and bounded, and could hardly be restrained as the balls
whistled among them. I drew off a little, and gazed upon my husband
and father, who were yet unharmed. I felt that my hour was come,
and endeavored to forget those I loved, and prepare myself for my
approaching fate.

"While I was thus engaged, the surgeon. Dr. Van Voorhees, came up.
He was badly wounded. His horse had been shot under him, and he had
received a ball in his leg. Every muscle of his face was quivering with
the agony of terror. He said to me--'Do you think they will take our
lives? I am badly wounded, but I think not mortally. Perhaps we might
purchase our lives by promising them a large reward. Do you think there
is any chance?'

"'Dr. Van Voorhees,' said I, 'do not let us waste the few moments
that yet remain to us in such vain hopes. Our fate is inevitable. In
a few moments we must appear before the bar of God. Let us make what
preparation is yet in our power.'

"'Oh! I cannot die,' exclaimed he, 'I am not fit to die--if I had but a
short time to prepare--death is awful!'

"I pointed to Ensign Ronan, who though mortally wounded and nearly
down, was still fighting with desperation on one knee.

"'Look at that man,' said I, 'at least he dies like a soldier.'

"'Yes,' replied the unfortunate man, with a convulsive gasp, 'but he
has no terrors of the future--he is an unbeliever!'

"At this moment a young Indian raised his tomahawk at me. By springing
aside, I avoided the blow which was intended for my skull, but which
alighted on my shoulder. I seized him around the neck, and while
exerting my utmost efforts to get possession of his scalping-knife,
which hung in a scabbard over his breast, I was dragged from his grasp
by another and an older Indian.

"The latter bore me struggling and resisting towards the lake.
Notwithstanding the rapidity with which I was hurried along, I
recognized as I passed them the lifeless remains of the unfortunate
surgeon. Some murderous tomahawk had stretched him upon the very spot
where I had last seen him.

"I was immediately plunged into the water and held there with a
forcible hand, notwithstanding my resistance. I soon perceived,
however, that the object of my captor was not to drown me, for he held
me firmly in such a position as to place my head above water. This
reassured me, and regarding him attentively, I soon recognized, in
spite of the paint with which he was disguised. _The Black Partridge_.

"When the firing had nearly subsided, my preserver bore me from the
water and conducted me up the sandbanks. It was a burning August
morning, and walking through the sand in my drenched condition was
inexpressibly painful and fatiguing. I stooped and took off my shoes
to free them from the sand with which they were nearly filled, when a
squaw seized and carried them off, and I was obliged to proceed without

"When we had gained the prairie, I was met by my father, who told me
that my husband was safe and but slightly wounded. They led me gently
back towards the Chicago River, along the southern bank of which was
the Pottowattamie encampment. At one time I was placed upon a horse
without a saddle, but finding the motion insupportable, I sprang off.
Supported partly by my kind conductor, _Black Partridge_, and partly
by another Indian, Pee-so-tum, who held dangling in his hand a scalp,
which by the black ribbon around the queue I recognized as that of
Capt. Wells, I dragged my fainting steps to one of the wigwams.

"The wife of Wau-bee-nee-mah, a chief from the Illinois River, was
standing near, and seeing my exhausted condition she seized a kettle,
dipped up some water from a stream that flowed near,[AH] threw into it
some maple sugar, and stirring it up with her hand gave it me to drink.
This act of kindness, in the midst of so many horrors, touched me most
sensibly, but my attention was soon diverted to other objects.

[Footnote AH: Just by the present State street Market.]

"The fort had become a scene of plunder to such as remained after the
troops marched out. The cattle had been shot down as they ran at large,
and lay dead or dying around. This work of butchery had commenced just
as we were leaving the fort. I well remembered a remark of Ensign
Ronan, as the firing went on. 'Such,' turning to me, 'is to be our
fate--to be shot down like brutes!'

"'Well, sir,' said the Commanding Officer who overheard him, 'are you

"'No,' replied the high spirited young man, 'I can march up to the
enemy where you dare not show your face;' and his subsequent gallant
behaviour showed this to be no idle boast.

"As the noise of the firing grew gradually less and the stragglers
from the victorious party came dropping in, I received confirmation of
what my father had hurriedly communicated in our _rencontre_ on the
lake shore; namely, that the whites had surrendered after the loss of
about two-thirds of their number. They had stipulated, through the
interpreter, Peresh Leclerc, for the preservation of their lives, and
those of the remaining women and children, and for their delivery at
some of the British posts, unless ransomed by traders in the Indian
country. It appears that the wounded prisoners were not considered as
included in the stipulation, and a horrible scene ensued upon their
being brought into camp.

"An old squaw infuriated by the loss of friends, or excited by the
sanguinary scenes around her, seemed possessed by a demoniac ferocity.
She seized a stable-fork and assaulted one miserable victim, who lay
groaning and writhing in the agony of his wounds, aggravated by the
scorching beams of the sun. With a delicacy of feeling scarcely to have
been expected under such circumstances, Wau-bee-nee-mah stretched a mat
across two poles, between me and this dreadful scene. I was thus spared
in some degree a view of its horrors, although I could not entirely
close my ears to the cries of the sufferer. The following night five
more of the wounded prisoners were tomahawked.

"The Americans after their first attack by the Indians charged upon
those who had concealed themselves in a sort of ravine, intervening
between the sand banks and the prairie. The latter gathered themselves
into a body, and after some hard fighting, in which the number of
whites had become reduced to twenty-eight, this little band succeeded
in breaking through the enemy, and gaining a rising ground, not far
from the Oak Woods. The contest now seemed hopeless, and Lt. Helm sent
Peresh Leclerc, a half-breed boy in the service of Mr. Kinzie, who
had accompanied the detachment and fought manfully on their side, to
propose terms of capitulation. It was stipulated that the lives of
all the survivors should be spared, and a ransom permitted as soon as

"But, in the mean time, a horrible scene had been enacted. One young
savage, climbing into the baggage-wagon containing the children of the
white families, twelve in number, tomahawked the children of the entire
group. This was during the engagement near the Sand-hills. When Captain
Wells, who was fighting near, beheld it, he exclaimed:

"Is that their game, butchering the women and children? Then I will
kill too!'

"So saying, he turned his horse's head, and started for the Indian
camp, near the fort, where had been left their squaws and children.

"Several Indians pursued him as he galloped along. He laid himself
flat on the neck of his horse, loading and firing in that position,
as he would occasionally turn on his pursuers. At length their balls
took effect, killing his horse, and severely wounding himself. At this
moment he was met by _Winnemeg_ and _Wau-ban-see_, who endeavored to
save him from the savages who had now overtaken him. As they supported
him along, after having disengaged him from his horse, he received his
death-blow from another Indian, _Pee-so-tum_, who stabbed him in the

"The heroic resolution of one of the soldier's wives deserves to be
recorded. She was a Mrs. Corbin, and had, from the first, expressed the
determination never to fall into the hands of the savages, believing
that their prisoners were always subjected to tortures worse than death.

"When, therefore, a party came upon her, to make her a prisoner, she
fought with desperation, refusing to surrender, although assured, by
signs, of safety and kind treatment, and literally suffered herself to
be cut to pieces, rather than become their captive.

"There was a Sergeant Holt, who, early in the engagement, received a
ball in the neck. Finding himself badly wounded, he gave his sword
to his wife, who was on horseback near him, telling her to defend
herself--he then made for the lake, to keep out of the way of the
balls. Mrs. Holt rode a very fine horse, which the Indians were
desirous of possessing, and they therefore attacked her, in hopes of
dismounting her.

"They fought only with the butt-ends of their guns, for their object
was not to kill her. She hacked and hewed at their pieces as they were
thrust against her, now on this side, now on that. Finally, she broke
loose from them, and dashed out into the prairie. The Indians pursued
her, shouting and laughing, and now and then calling out:

"'The brave woman! do not hurt her!'

"At length they overtook her again, and while she was engaged with two
or three in front, one succeeded in seizing her by the neck behind,
and dragging her, although a large and powerful woman, from her horse.
Notwithstanding that their guns had been so hacked and injured, and
even themselves cut severely, they seemed to regard her only with
admiration. They took her to a trader on the Illinois River, by whom
she was restored to her friends, after having received every kindness
during her captivity.[AI]

[Footnote AI: Mrs. Holt is believed to be still living in the State of

"Those of the family of Mr. Kinzie, who had remained in the boat,
near the mouth of the river, were carefully guarded by Kee-po-tah
and another Indian. They had seen the smoke--then the blaze--and
immediately after the report of the first tremendous discharge sounded
in their ears. Then all was confusion. They realized nothing until they
saw an Indian come towards them from the battle-ground, leading a horse
on which sat a lady, apparently wounded.

"'That is Mrs. Heald,' cried Mrs. Kinzie. 'That Indian will kill her.
Run, Chandonnai,' to one of Mr. Kinzie's clerks, 'take the mule that is
tied there, and offer it to him to release her.'

"Her captor by this time, was in the act of disengaging her bonnet from
her head, in order to scalp her. Chandonnai ran up, offered the mule as
a ransom, with the promise of ten bottles of whiskey, as soon as they
should reach his village. The latter was a strong temptation.

"'But,' said the Indian, 'she is badly wounded--she will die. Will you
give me the whiskey, at all events?'

"Chandonnai promised that he would, and the bargain was concluded.
The savage placed the lady's bonnet on his own head, and after an
ineffectual effort on the part of some squaws to rob her of her shoes
and stockings, she was brought on board the boat, where she lay moaning
with pain from the many bullet wounds she had received in both arms.

"The horse she had ridden was a fine spirited animal, and, being
desirous of possessing themselves of it uninjured, the Indians had
aimed their shots so as to disable the rider, without injuring her

"She had not lain long in the boat, when a young Indian of savage
aspect was seen approaching. A buffalo robe was hastily drawn over Mrs.
Heald, and she was admonished to suppress all sound of complaint, as
she valued her life.

"The heroic woman remained perfectly silent, while the savage drew
near. He had a pistol in his hand, which he rested on the side of the
boat, while, with a fearful scowl, he looked pryingly around. Black
Jim, one of the servants who stood in the bow of the boat, seized an
axe that lay near, and signed to him that if he shot, he would cleave
his skull; telling him that the boat contained only the family of
_Shaw-nee-aw-kee_. Upon this, the Indian retired. It afterward appeared
that the object of his search was Mr. Burnett, a trader from St.
Joseph's, with whom he had some account to settle.

"When the boat was at length permitted to return to the mansion of Mr.
Kinzie, and Mrs. Heald was removed to the house, it became necessary to
dress her wounds.

"Mr. K. applied to an old chief who stood by, and who, like most of his
tribe, possessed some skill in surgery, to extract a ball from the arm
of the sufferer.

"'No, father,' replied he. 'I cannot do it--it makes me sick
here'--(placing his hand on his heart).

"Mr. Kinzie then performed the operation himself with his penknife.

"At their own mansion the family of Mr. Kinzie were closely guarded by
their Indian friends, whose intention it was, to carry them to Detroit
for security. The rest of the prisoners remained at the wigwams of
their captors.

"The following morning the work of plunder being completed, the Indians
set fire to the fort. A very equitable distribution of the finery
appeared to have been made, and shawls, ribbons, and feathers fluttered
about in all directions. The ludicrous appearance of one young fellow
who had arrayed himself in a muslin gown, and the bonnet of one of
the ladies, would, under other circumstances, have afforded matter of

"Black Partridge, Wau-ban-see, and Kee-po-tah, with two other Indians,
having established themselves in the porch of the building as
sentinels, to protect the family from any evil that the young men might
be excited to commit, all remained tranquil for a short space after the

"Very soon, however, a party of Indians from the Wabash made their
appearance. These were, decidedly, the most hostile and implacable of
all the tribes of the Pottowattamies.

"Being more remote, they had shared less than some of their brethren
in the kindness of Mr. Kinzie and his family, and consequently their
sentiments of regard for them were less powerful.

"Runners had been sent to the villages to apprise them of the intended
evacuation of the post, as well as of the plan of the Indians assembled
to attack the troops.

"Thirsting to participate in such a scene they hurried on, and
great was their mortification on arriving at the river Aux Plaines,
to meet with a party of their friends having with them their chief
Nee-scot-nee-meg, badly wounded, and to learn that the battle was over,
the spoils divided, and the scalps all taken.

"On arriving at Chicago they blackened their faces, and proceeded
towards the dwelling of Mr. Kinzie.

"From his station on the piazza Black Partridge had watched their
approach, and his fears were particularly awakened for the safety
of Mrs. Helm (Mr. Kinzie's step-daughter), who had recently come to
the post, and was personally unknown to the more remote Indians. By
his advice she was made to assume the ordinary dress of a French
woman of the country; namely, a short gown and petticoat, with a blue
cotton handkerchief wrapped around her head. In this disguise she
was conducted by Black Partridge himself to the house of Ouilmette,
a Frenchman with a half-breed wife, who formed a part of the
establishment of Mr. Kinzie, and whose dwelling was close at hand.

"It so happened that the Indians came first to this house, in their
search for prisoners. As they approached, the inmates, fearful that the
fair complexion and general appearance of Mrs. Helm might betray her
for an American, raised a large feather-bed and placed her under the
edge of it, upon the bedstead, with her face to the wall. Mrs. Bisson,
the sister of Ouilmette's wife, then seated herself with her sewing
upon the front of the bed.

"It was a hot day in August, and the feverish excitement of fear and
agitation, together with her position, which was nearly suffocating,
became so intolerable, that Mrs. Helm at length entreated to be
released and given up to the Indians.

"'I can but die,' said she; 'let them put an end to my misery at once.'

"Mrs. Bisson replied, 'Your death would be the destruction of us all,
for Black Partridge has resolved that if one drop of the blood of your
family is spilled, he will take the lives of all concerned in it, even
his nearest friends, and if once the work of murder commences, there
will be no end of it, so long as there remains one white person, or
half-breed, in the country.'

"This expostulation nerved Mrs. Helm with fresh resolution.

"The Indians entered, and she could occasionally see them from her
hiding-place, gliding about, and stealthily inspecting every part of
the room, though without making any ostensible search, until apparently
satisfied that there was no one concealed, they left the house.

"All this time Mrs. Bisson had kept her seat upon the side of the bed,
calmly sorting and arranging the patch-work of the quilt on which she
was engaged, and preserving an appearance of the utmost tranquillity,
although she knew not but that the next moment she might receive a
tomahawk in her brain. Her self-command unquestionably saved the lives
of all present.

"From Ouilmette's house the party of Indians proceeded to the dwelling
of Mr. Kinzie. They entered the parlor in which the family were
assembled with their faithful protectors, and seated themselves upon
the floor in silence.

"Black Partridge perceived from their moody and revengeful looks what
was passing in their minds, but he dared not remonstrate with them. He
only observed in a low tone to Wau-ban-see--

"'We have endeavored to save our friends, but it is in vain--nothing
will save them now.'

"At this moment a friendly whoop was heard from a party of new comers
on the opposite bank of the river. Black Partridge sprang to meet their
leader, as the canoes in which they had hastily embarked touched the
bank near the house.

"'Who are you?" demanded he.

"'A man--who are _you?_'

"' A man like yourself, but tell me _who_ you are'--meaning, tell me
your disposition, and which side you are for.

"'I am the _Sau-ga-nash!_"

"'Then make all speed to the house--your friend is in danger, and you
alone can save him.'

"'_Billy Caldwell_,[AJ] for it was he, entered the parlor with a calm
step, and without a trace of agitation in his manner. He deliberately
took off his accoutrements and placed them with his rifle behind the
door; then saluted the hostile savages.

[Footnote AJ: Billy Caldwell was a half-breed, and a chief of the
nation. In his reply, "_I am a Sau-ga-nash_," or Englishman, he
designed to convey, "I am a _white man_." Had he said, "_I am a
Pottowattamie_," it would have been interpreted to mean, "I belong to
my nation, and am prepared to go all lengths with them."]

"'How now, my friends! A good day to you. I was told there were enemies
here, but I am glad to find only friends. Why have you blackened your
faces? Is it that you are mourning for the friends you have lost in
battle?' (purposely misunderstanding this token of evil designs). 'Or
is it that you are fasting? If so, ask our friend here, and he will
give you to eat. He is the Indian's friend, and never yet refused them
what they had need of.'

"Thus taken by surprise, the savages were ashamed to acknowledge their
bloody purpose. They, therefore, said modestly that they came to beg
of their friends some white cotton in which to wrap their dead, before
interring them. This was given to them with some other presents, and
they took their departure peaceably from the premises.

"Along with Mr. Kinzie's party was a non-commissioned officer who had
made his escape in a singular manner. As the troops were about leaving
the fort it was found that the baggage-horses of the surgeon had
strayed off. The quarter-master-sergeant, Griffith, was sent to collect
them and bring them on, it being absolutely necessary to recover them,
since their packs contained part of the surgeon's apparatus, and the
medicines for the march.

"This man had been for a long time on the sick report, and for this
reason was given the charge of the baggage, instead of being placed
with the troops. His efforts to recover the horses being unsuccessful,
he was hastening to rejoin his party, alarmed at some appearances of
disorder and hostile indications among the Indians, when he was met and
made prisoner by To-pee-ne-bee.

"Having taken from him his arms and accoutrements, the chief put him
into a canoe and paddled Mm across the river, bidding him make for the
woods and secrete himself. This he did, and the following day, in the
afternoon, seeing from his lurking-place that all appeared quiet, he
ventured to steal cautiously into the garden of Ouilmette, where he
concealed himself for a time behind some currant-bushes.

"At length he determined to enter the house, and accordingly
climbed up through a small back window, into the room where the
family were. This was just as the Wabash Indians left the house of
Ouilmette for that of Mr. Kinzie. The danger of the sergeant was now
imminent. The family stripped him of his uniform and arrayed him in
a suit of deer-skin, with belt, moccasins, and pipe, like a French
engagé. His dark complexion and large black whiskers favored the
disguise. The family were all ordered to address him in French, and
although utterly ignorant of the language he continued to pass for
a _Weem-tee-gosh_,[AK] and as such to accompany Mr. Kinzie and his
family, undetected by his enemies, until they reached a place of safety.

[Footnote AK: Frenchman.]

"On the third day after the battle, the family of Mr. Kinzie, with
the clerks of the establishment, were put into a boat, under the care
of François, a half-breed interpreter, and conveyed to St. Joseph's,
where they remained until the following November, under the protection
of _To-pee-nee-bee's_ band. They were then conducted to Detroit, under
the escort of Chandonnai and their trusty Indian friend, _Ke-po-tah_,
and delivered up as prisoners of war, to Col. McKee, the British Indian

"Mr. Kinzie was not allowed to leave St. Joseph's with his family, his
Indian friends insisting on his remaining and endeavoring to secure
some remnant of his scattered property. During his excursions with them
for that purpose, he wore the costume and paint of the tribe, in order
to escape capture and perhaps death at the hands of those who were
still thirsting for blood. In time, however, his anxiety for his family
induced him to follow them to Detroit, where, in the month of January,
he was received and paroled by Gen. Proctor.

"Capt. and Mrs. Heald had been sent across the lake to St. Joseph's the
day after the battle. The former had received two wounds, the latter
seven in the engagement.

"Lieut. Helm, who was likewise wounded, was carried by some friendly
Indians to their village on the Au Sable, and thence to Peoria, where
he was liberated by the intervention of Mr. Thomas Forsyth, the
half-brother of Mr. Kinzie. Mrs. Helm had accompanied her parents to
St. Joseph, where they resided in the family of Alexander Robinson,[AL]
receiving from them all possible kindness and hospitality for several

[Footnote AL: The Pottowattamie chief, so well known to many of the
citizens of Chicago, now residing at Aux Plaines.]

"After their arrival in Detroit, Mrs. Helm was joined by her husband,
when they were both arrested by order of the British commander, and
sent on horseback, in the dead of winter, through Canada to Fort George
on the Niagara frontier. When they arrived at that post, there seemed
no official appointed to receive them, and notwithstanding their long
and fatiguing journey, in weather the most cold and inclement, Mrs.
H., a delicate woman of seventeen years, was permitted to sit waiting
in her saddle without the gate for more than an hour, before the
refreshment of fire or food, or even the shelter of a roof, was offered
them. When Col. Sheaffe, who had been absent at the time, was informed
of this brutal inhospitality, he expressed the greatest indignation.
He waited on Mrs. Helm immediately, apologized in the most courteous
manner, and treated both her and Lieut. H. with the most considerate
kindness, until, by an exchange of prisoners, they were liberated, and
found means to reach their friends in Steuben County, N. Y.

"Capt. Heald had been taken prisoner by an Indian from the Kankakee,
who had a strong personal regard for him, and who, when he saw the
wounded and enfeebled state of Mrs. H., released her husband that
he might accompany his wife to St. Joseph's. To the latter place
they were accordingly carried, as has been related, by Chandonnai
and his party. In the meantime, the Indian who had so nobly released
his prisoner returned to his village on the Kankakee, where he
had the mortification of finding that his conduct had excited
great dissatisfaction among his band. So great was the displeasure
manifested, that he resolved to make a journey to St. Joseph's and
reclaim his prisoner.

"News of his intention being brought to To-pee-nee-bee and Ke-po-tah
under whose care the prisoners were, they held a private council with
Chandonnai, Mr. Kinzie, and the principal men of the village, the
result of which was a determination to send Capt. and Mrs. Heald to the
island of Mackinac, and deliver them up to the British.

"They were accordingly put in a bark canoe, and paddled by Robinson and
his wife a distance of three hundred miles along the coast of Michigan,
and surrendered as prisoners of war to the Commanding Officer at

"As an instance of the procrastinating spirit of Capt. Heald it may be
mentioned that even after he had received certain intelligence that
his Indian captor was on his way from the Kankakee to St. Joseph's to
retake him, he would still have delayed another day at that place, to
make preparation for a more comfortable journey to Mackinac.

"The soldiers, with their wives and surviving children, were dispersed
among the different villages of the Pottowattamies upon the Illinois,
Wabash, Rock River, and at Milwaukie, until the following spring, when
they were, for the most part, carried to Detroit, and ransomed.

"Mrs. Burns, with her infant, became the prisoners of a chief, who
carried her to his village and treated her with great kindness. His
wife, from jealousy of the favor shown to "the white woman" and her
child, always treated them with great hostility. On one occasion she
struck the infant with a tomahawk, and narrowly missed her aim of
putting an end to it altogether.[AM] They were not left long in the
power of the old hag, after this demonstration, but on the first
opportunity carried to a place of safety.

[Footnote AM: Twenty-two years after this, as I was on a journey to
Chicago in the steamer Uncle Sam, a young woman, hearing my name,
introduced herself to me, and raising the hair from her forehead,
showed me the mark of the tomahawk which had so nearly been fatal to

"The family of Mr. Lee had resided in a house on the Lake shore, not
far from the fort. Mr. Lee was the owner of Lee's Place, which he
cultivated as a farm. It was his son who ran down with the discharged
soldier to give the alarm of "Indians" at the fort on the afternoon of
the 7th of April. The father, the son, and all the other members of the
family had fallen victims on the 15th of August, except Mrs. Lee and
her young infant. These were claimed by Black Partridge, and carried
to his village on the Au Sable. He had been particularly attached to a
little girl of Mrs. Lee's, about twelve years of age. This child had
been placed on horseback for the march, and as she was unaccustomed to
the exercise, she was tied fast to the saddle, lest by any accident she
should slip off or be thrown.

"She was within reach of the balls at the commencement of the
engagement, and was severely wounded. The horse set off on a full
gallop, which partly threw her, but she was held fast by the bands
which confined her, and hung dangling as the animal ran violently
about. In this state she was met by Black Partridge, who caught the
horse and disengaged her from the saddle. Finding her so much wounded
that she could not recover, and that she was suffering great agony, he
put the finishing stroke to her at once with his tomahawk. He afterward
said that this was the hardest thing he ever tried to do, but he did
it because he could not bear to see her suffer.

"He took the mother and her infant to his village, where he became
warmly attached to the former--so much so that he wished to marry her,
but, as she very naturally objected, he treated her with the greatest
respect and consideration. He was in no hurry to release her, for he
was in hopes of prevailing on her to become his wife. In the course of
the winter her child fell ill. Finding that none of the remedies within
their reach were effectual. Black Partridge proposed to take the little
one to Chicago, where there was now a French trader living in the
mansion of Mr. Kinzie, and procure some medical aid from him. Wrapping
up his charge with the greatest care, he sat out on his journey.

"When he arrived at the residence of M. Du Pin, he entered the room
where he was, and carefully placed his burthen on the floor.

"'What have you there?' asked M. Du Pin.

"'A young raccoon, which I have brought you as a present,' was the
reply, and opening the pack, he showed the little sick infant.

"When the trader had prescribed for its complaint, and Black Partridge
was about to return to his home, he told his friend his proposal
to Mrs. Lee to become his wife and the manner in which it had been

"M. Du Pin entertained some fears that the chief's honorable resolution
might not hold out, to leave it to the lady herself whether to accept
his addresses or not, so he entered at once into a negotiation for her
ransom, and so effectually wrought upon the good feelings of Black
Partridge that he consented to bring his fair prisoner at once to
Chicago, that she might be restored to her friends.

"Whether the kind trader had at the outset any other feeling in the
matter than sympathy and brotherly kindness we cannot say--we only know
that in process of time Mrs. Lee became Madame Du Pin, and that they
lived together in great happiness for many years after.

"The fate of Nau-non-gee, one of the chiefs of the Calumet village, and
who is mentioned in the early part of the narrative, deserves to be

"During the battle of the 15th of August the chief object of his attack
was one Sergeant Hays, a man from whom he had received many acts of

"After Hays had received a ball through the body, this Indian ran up
to him to tomahawk him, when the Sergeant, collecting his remaining
strength, pierced him through the body with his bayonet. They fell
together. Other Indians running up soon dispatched Hays, and it was
not until then that his bayonet was extracted from the body of his

"The wounded chief was carried after the battle to his village on
the Calumet, where he survived for several days. Finding his end
approaching, he called together his young men and enjoined them in
the most solemn manner, to regard the safety of their prisoners after
his death, and to take the lives of none of them from respect to his
memory, as he deserved his fate from the hands of those whose kindness
he had so ill-requited."



It had been a stipulation of Gen. Hull at the surrender of Detroit that
the inhabitants of that place should be permitted to remain undisturbed
in their homes. Accordingly the family of Mr. Kinzie took up their
quarters with their friends in the old mansion, which many will still
recollect as standing on the north-east corner of Jefferson avenue and
Wayne street.

The feelings of indignation and sympathy were constantly aroused in
the hearts of the citizens during the winter that ensued. They were
almost daily called upon to witness the cruelties practiced upon the
American prisoners brought in by their Indian captors. Those who could
scarcely drag their wounded, bleeding feet over the frozen ground,
were compelled to dance for the amusement of the savages, and these
exhibitions sometimes took place before the Government House, the
residence of Col. McKee. Some of the British officers looked on from
their windows at these heart-rending performances; for the honor of
humanity we will hope such instances were rare.

Everything that could be made available among the effects of the
citizens was offered to ransom their countrymen from the hands
of these inhuman beings. The prisoners brought in from the River
Raisin--those unfortunate men who were permitted after their surrender
to Gen. Proctor to be tortured and murdered by inches by his savage
allies, excited the sympathies and called for the action of the whole
community. Private houses were turned into hospitals, and every one
was forward to get possession of as many as possible of the survivors.
To effect this, even the articles of their apparel were bartered by
the ladies of Detroit, as they watched from their doors or windows the
miserable victims carried about for sale.

In the dwelling of Mr. Kinzie one large room was devoted to the
reception of the sufferers. Few of them survived. Among those spoken as
objects of the deepest interest were two young gentlemen of Kentucky,
brothers, both severely wounded, and their wounds aggravated to a
mortal degree by subsequent ill-usage and hardships. Their solicitude
for each other, and their exhibition in various ways of the most tender
fraternal affection, created an impression never to be forgotten.

The last bargain made was by black Jim, and one of children, who had
permission to redeem a negro servant of the gallant Col. Allen, with an
old white horse, the only available article that remained among their

A brother of Col. Allen afterwards came to Detroit, and the negro
preferred returning to servitude rather than remaining a stranger in a
strange land.

Mr. Kinzie, as has been related, joined his family at Detroit in the
month of January. A short time after suspicions arose in the mind of
Gen. Proctor that he was in correspondence with Gen. Harrison, who was
now at Fort Meigs, and who was believed to be meditating an advance
upon Detroit. Lieut. Watson of the British army waited upon Mr. Kinzie
one day with an invitation to the quarters of Gen. Proctor on the
opposite side of the river, saying he wished to speak with him, on
business. Quite unsuspicious, he complied with the invitation, when to
his surprise he was ordered into confinement, and strictly guarded in
the house of his former partner, Mr. Patterson of Sandwich. Finding
that he did not return to his home, Mrs. Kinzie informed some of the
Indian chiefs, his particular friends, who immediately repaired to
the headquarters of the Commanding Officer, demanded their "friend's"
release, and brought him back to his home. After waiting a time until a
favorable opportunity presented itself, the General sent a detachment
of dragoons to arrest him. They had succeeded in carrying him away, and
crossing the river with him. Just at this moment a party of friendly
Indians made their appearance.

"Where is the Shaw-nee-aw-kee?" was the first question. "There,"
replied his wife, pointing across the river, "in the hands of the
red-coats, who are taking him away again."

The Indians ran to the river, seized some canoes that they found there,
and crossing over to Sandwich, compelled Gen. Proctor a second time to
forego his intentions.

A third time this officer was more successful, and succeeded in
arresting Mr. Kinzie and conveying him heavily ironed to Fort Maiden,
in Canada, at the mouth of the Detroit River. Here he was at first
treated with great severity, but after a time the rigor of his
confinement was somewhat relaxed, and he was permitted to walk on the
bank of the river for air and exercise.

"On the 10th of September, as he was taking his promenade under the
close supervision of a guard of soldiers, the whole party were startled
by the sound of guns upon Lake Erie, at no great distance below. What
could it mean? It must be Commodore Barclay firing into some of the
Yankees. The firing continued. The time allotted the prisoner for his
daily walk expired, but neither he nor his guard observed the lapse of
time, so anxiously were they listening to what they now felt sure was
an engagement between ships of war. At length Mr. Kinzie was reminded
that the hour for his return to confinement had arrived. He petitioned
for another half-hour.

"Let me stay," said he, "till we can learn how the battle has gone."

Very soon a sloop appeared under press of sail, rounding the point, and
presently two gun-boats in chase of her.

"She is running--she bears the British colors," cried he--"yes, yes,
they are lowering--she is striking her flag! Now," turning to the
soldiers, "I will go back to prison contented--I know how the battle
has gone."

The sloop was the Little Belt, the last of the squadron captured by
the gallant Perry on that memorable occasion which he announced in the
immortal words:

"We have met the enemy, and they are ours!"

Matters were growing critical, and it was necessary to transfer all
prisoners to a place of greater security than the frontier was now
likely to be. It was resolved therefore to send Mr. Kinzie to the
mother country. Nothing has ever appeared, which would explain this
course of Gen. Proctor, in regard to this gentleman. He had been taken
from the bosom of his family, where he was living quietly under the
parole which he had received, and protected by the stipulations of the
surrender. He was kept for months in confinement. Now he was placed on
horseback under a strong guard, who announced that they had orders to
shoot him through the head, if he offered to speak to a person upon the
road. He was tied upon the saddle in a way to prevent his escape, and
thus they sat out for Quebec. A little incident occurred, which will
help to illustrate the course invariably pursued towards our citizens
at this period, by the British army on the North-western frontier.

The saddle on which Mr. Kinzie rode had not been properly fastened, and
owing to the rough motion of the annual on which it was, it turned,
so as to bring the rider into a most awkward and painful position.
His limbs being fastened, he could not disengage himself, and in this
manner he was compelled by those who had charge of him to ride until he
was nearly exhausted, before they had the humanity to release him.

Arrived at Quebec, he was put on board a small vessel to be sent
to England. The vessel when a few days out at sea was chased by an
American frigate and driven into Halifax. A second time she set sail,
when she sprung a leak and was compelled to put back.

The attempt to send him across the ocean was now abandoned, and he was
returned to Quebec. Another step, equally inexplicable with his arrest,
was now taken. This was his release and that of Mr. Macomb, of Detroit,
who was also in confinement in Quebec, and the permission given them
to return to their friends and families, although the war was not
yet ended. It may possibly be imagined that in the treatment these
gentlemen received, the British Commander-in-chief sheltered himself
upon the plea of their being "native born British subjects," and
perhaps when it was ascertained that Mr. Kinzie was indeed a citizen of
the United States, it was thought safest to release him.

In the meantime. General Harrison at the head of his troops had reached
Detroit. He landed on the 29th September. All the citizens went forth
to meet him--Mrs. Kinzie, leading her children by the hand, was of the
number. The General accompanied her to her home, and took up his abode
there. On his arrival he was introduced to Kee-po-tah, who happened to
be on a visit to the family at that time. The General had seen the
chief the preceding year, at the Council at Vincennes, and the meeting
was one of great cordiality and interest.

       *       *       *       *       *

In 1816, Mr. Kinzie and his family again returned to Chicago. The fort
was rebuilt on a somewhat larger scale than the former one. It was
not until the return of the troops that the bones of the unfortunate
Americans who had been massacred four years before, were collected and

An Indian Agency, under the charge of Charles Jewett, Esq., of
Kentucky, was established. He was succeeded in 1820 by Dr. Alexander
Wolcott, of Connecticut, who occupied that position until his death in

The troops were removed from the garrison in 1823, but restored in
1828, after the Winnebago war. This was a disturbance between the
Winnebagoes and white settlers on and near the Mississippi. After
some murders had been committed, the young chief. Red Bird, was taken
and imprisoned at Prairie du Chien to await his trial, where he died
of chagrin and the irksomeness of confinement. It was feared that
the Pottowattamies would make common cause with the Winnebagoes, and
commence a general system of havoc and bloodshed on the frontier.
They were deterred from such a step, probably, by the exertions of
Billy Caldwell, Robinson, and Shau-bee-nay, who made an expedition
among the Rock River bands, to argue and persuade them into remaining

The few citizens of Chicago in these days, lived for the most part
a very quiet unvaried life. The great abundance of game, and the
immense fertility of the lands they cultivated, furnished them with a
superabundance of all the luxuries of garden, cornfield, and dairy. The
question was once asked by a friend in the "east countrie:"

"How do you dispose of all the good things you raise? You have no
market?" "No." "And yet cannot consume it all yourselves?" "No." "What
then do you do with it?"

"Why, we manage, when a vessel arrives to persuade the Captain to
accept a few kegs of butter, and stores of corn and vegetables, as a
present, and that helps us to get rid of some of it."

The mails arrived, as may be supposed, at very rare intervals. They
were brought occasionally from Fort Clark (Peoria), but more frequently
from Fort Wayne, or across the peninsula of Michigan, which was still
a wilderness peopled with savages. The hardy adventurer who acted as
express was, not unfrequently, obliged to imitate the birds of heaven
and "lodge among the branches," in order to ensure the safety of
himself and his charge.

Visitors were very rare, unless it was a friend who came to sojourn
some time, and share a life in the wilderness. A traveller, however,
occasionally found his way to the spot, in passing to or from "parts
unknown," and such a one was sure of a hospitable and hearty welcome.

A gentleman journeying from the southern settlements once arrived late
in the evening at Wolf Point, where was then the small establishment
of George hunt and a Mr. Wallace. He stopped and inquired if he could
have accommodation for the night for himself and his horse. The answer
was, that they were ill provided to entertain a stranger--the house was
small, and they were keeping "bachelor's hall."

"Is there no place," inquired the traveller, "where I can obtain a

"Oh! yes--you will find a very comfortable house, Mr. Kinzie's, about
half a mile below, near the mouth of the river."

[Illustration: SHAUBENA.

(Chief of the Pottawattomies.) From photograph of oil portrait in
possession of Chicago Historical Society.]

The stranger turned his horse's head and took the road indicated.
Arrived at the spot, his first inquiry was:

"Is this the residence of Mr. Kinzie?"

"Yes, sir."

"I should be glad to get accommodation for myself and horse."

"Certainly, sir--walk in."

The horse was taken to the stable, while the gentleman was ushered
into a parlor where were two ladies. The usual preliminary questions
and answers were gone through, for in a new country people soon become
acquainted, and the gentleman ere long found himself seated at a
comfortable hot supper--we will venture to say a fine supper--since the
table in this domestic establishment has always been somewhat famous.

Apparently, the gentleman enjoyed it, for he made himself quite at
home. He even called for a boot-jack after tea, and drew off his boots.
The ladies were a little surprised, but they had lived a good while out
of the world, and they did not know what changes in etiquette might
have taken place during their retirement.

Before taking his leave for the night, the traveller signified what it
would please him to have for breakfast, which was duly prepared. The
next day proved stormy. The gentleman was satisfied with his quarters,
and having taken care to ascertain that there was no neglect, or
deficiency of accommodation so far as his horse was concerned, he got
through the day very comfortably.

Now and then, when he was tired of reading, he would converse with
the family, and seemed, upon the whole, by no means disposed to hold
himself aloof, but to indulge in a little becoming sociability, seeing
they were all there away in the woods.

The second day the weather brightened. The traveller signified his
intention to depart. He ordered his horse to the door--then he called
for his bill.

"My house is not a tavern, sir," was the astounding reply.

"Not a tavern! Good heavens! have I been making myself at home in this
manner in a private family?"

The gentleman was profuse in his apologies, which, however, were quite
unnecessary, for the family had perceived from the first the mistake he
had fallen into, and they had amused themselves during his whole visit
in anticipating the consternation of their guest when he should be

       *       *       *       *       *

It was in the year 1816 (the same year of the rebuilding of the fort,
after its destruction by the Indians), that the tract of land on which
Chicago stands, together with the surrounding country, was ceded to the
United States, by the Pottowattamies.[70] They remained the peaceful
occupants of it, however, for twenty years longer. It was not until
1836 that they were removed by Government to lands appropriated for
their use on the Upper Missouri.[71]

In the year 1830 the town of Chicago was laid out into lots by
commissioners appointed by the State. At this time the prices of these
lots ranged from ten to sixty dollars.[72]

       *       *       *       *       *

Mr. Kinzie, who from the geographical position of this place, and the
vast fertility of the surrounding country, had always foretold its
eventual prosperity and importance, was not permitted to witness the
realization of his predictions. He closed his useful and energetic life
on the 6th of January, 1828, having just completed his sixty-fifth



Chicago was not, at the period of my first visit, the cheerful, happy
place it had once been. The death of Dr. Wolcott, of Lieut. Furman, and
of a promising young son of Mr. Beaubien, all within a few weeks of
each other, had thrown a gloom over all the different branches of the
social circle.

The weather, too, was inclement and stormy, beyond anything that had
been known before. Only twice, during a period of two months, did the
sun shine out through the entire day. So late as the second week in
April, when my husband had left to return to Fort Winnebago, the storms
were so severe that he and his men were obliged to lie by two or three
days in an Indian lodge.

Robert Kinzie, Medard Beaubien, and Billy Caldwell had gone at the same
time to the Calumet to hunt, and as they did not make their appearance
for many days, we were persuaded they had perished with cold. They
returned at length, however, to our infinite joy, having only escaped
freezing by the forethought of Robert and Caldwell, in carrying each
two blankets instead of one.

Our only recreation was an occasional ride on horseback when the
weather would permit, through the woods on the north side of the river,
or across the prairie, along the lake shore on the south.

When we went in the former direction, a little bridle-path took us
along what is now Rush street. The thick boughs of the trees arched
over our heads, and we were often compelled, as we rode, to break away
the projecting branches of the shrubs which impeded our path. The
little prairie west of Wright's Woods was the usual termination of our
ride in this direction.

When we chose the path across the prairie towards the south, we
generally passed Dr. Harmon, superintending the construction of a _sod
fence_, at a spot he had chosen, near the shore of the lake. In this
inclosure he occupied himself, as the season advanced, in planting
fruit stones of all descriptions, to make ready a garden and orchard
for future enjoyment.

We usually stopped to have a little chat. The two favorite themes of
the Doctor were horticulture, and the certain future importance of
Chicago. That it was destined to be a great city, was his unalterable
conviction; and indeed, by this time, all forest and prairie as it was,
we half began to believe it ourselves.

On the pleasant afternoons which we occasionally enjoyed as the season
advanced, we found no small amusement in practising pistol-firing. The
place appropriated to this sport was outside the pickets, the mark
being placed on a panel in one of the bastions. The gentlemen must not
be offended if I record that, in process of time, the ladies acquired
a degree of skill that enabled them, as a general thing, to come off
triumphant. One of the ladies was a great shot, having brought down her
grouse on the wing, to the no small delight of Captain Scott[73]--with
regard to the others I am afraid it was more politeness than want of
skill, which induced the gentlemen to yield the palm to them.

Now and then there was a little excitement within the fort, aroused by
the discovery that _a settler_ had been engaged in selling milk-punch,
instead of milk, to the soldiers, thereby interfering in no small
degree with the regularity and perfect discipline of the service.
The first step was to "drum out" the offender with all the honors
of war--that is, with a party-colored dress, and the Rogue's March
played behind him. The next, to place all the victims of this piece
of deception in the guard-house, where the Commanding Officer's lady
supplied them bountifully with coffee and hot cakes, by way of opening
their eyes to the enormity of their offence. It was not to be wondered
at that the officers sometimes complained of its being more of a strife
with the soldiers who should get into the guard-house, than who should
keep out of it. The poor fellows knew when they were well off.

Once, upon a Sunday, we were rowed up to "the point" to attend a
religious service, conducted by Father S----, as he was called.

We saw a tall, slender man, dressed in a green frock coat, from the
sleeves of which dangled a pair of hands giving abundant evidence,
together with the rest of his dress, that he placed small faith in the
axiom--"cleanliness is a part of holiness."

He stepped briskly upon a little platform behind a table, and commenced
his discourse. His subject was, "The fear of God."

"There was a kind of fear," he told us, "that was very nearly
a_lee_-a-nated to love: so nearly, that it was not worth while
splitting hairs for the difference." He then went on to describe this
kind of fear. He grew more and more involved as he proceeded with
his description, until at length, quite bewildered, he paused and
exclaimed, "Come, let's stop a little while, and clear away the brush."
He unravelled, as well as he was able, the tangled thread of his
ideas, and went on with his subject. But soon again losing his way, he
came to a second halt. "Now," said he, wiping the perspiration from
his forehead with a red cotton handkerchief many degrees from clean,
"now, suppose we drive back a little piece." Thus he recapitulated
what he wished to impress upon us, of the necessity of cherishing a
fear that maketh wise unto salvation, "which fear," said he, "may we
all enjoy, that together we may soar away, on the rolling clouds of
æther, to a boundless and happy eternity, which is the wish of your
humble servant." And, flourishing abroad his hands, with the best of
dancing-school bows, he took seat.

It will be readily imagined that we felt our own religious exercises
at home to be more edifying than such as this, and that we confined
ourselves to them for the future.

The return of our brother, Robert Kinzie, from Palestine (not the Holy
Land, but the seat of the Land Office), with the certificate of the
title of the family to that portion of Chicago since known as "Kinzie's
Addition," was looked upon as establishing a home for us at some future
day, if the glorious dreams of good Dr. Harmon, and a few others,
should come to be realized. One little incident will show how moderate
were, in fact, the anticipations of most persons at that period.

The certificate, which was issued in Robert's name, he representing
the family in making the application, described only a fractional
quarter section of one hundred and two acres, instead of one hundred
and sixty acres, the river and Lake Michigan cutting off fifty-eight
acres on the southern and eastern lines of the quarter. The applicants
had liberty to select their complement of fifty-eight acres out of any
unappropriated land that suited them.

"Now, my son," said his mother, to Robert, "lay your claim on the
cornfield at Wolf Point. It is fine land, and will always be valuable
for cultivation--besides, as it faces down the main river, the
situation will always be a convenient one."

The answer was a hearty laugh. "Hear mother," said Robert. "We have
just got a hundred and two acres--more than we shall ever want, or know
what to do with, and now she would have me go and claim fifty-eight
acres more!"

"Take my advice, my boy," repeated his mother, "or you may live one day
to regret it."

"Well, I cannot see how I can ever regret not getting more than we can
possibly make use of." And so the matter ended. The fifty-eight acres
were never claimed, and there was, I think, a very general impression
that asking for our just rights in the case would have a very grasping,
covetous look. How much wiser five and twenty years have made us!

       *       *       *       *       *

During my sojourn of two months at Chicago, our mother often
entertained me with stories of her early life and adventures. The
following is her history of her captivity among the Senecas, which
I have put in the form of a tale, although without the slightest
variation from the facts as I received them from her lips, and those
of her sister, Mrs. William Forsyth, of Sandwich (C. W.), the little
Maggie of the story.



It is well known that previous to the war of the Revolution, the
whole of the western portion of Pennsylvania was inhabited chiefly by
different Indian tribes. Of these, the Delawares were the friends of
the whites, and after the commencement of the great struggle, took part
with the United States. The Iroquois, on the contrary, were the friends
and allies of the mother country.

Very few white settlers had ventured beyond the Susquehannah. The
numerous roving bands of Shawanoes, Nanticokes, &c., although sometimes
professing friendship with the Americans, and acting in concert with
the Delawares or Lenapé as allies, at others suffered themselves to be
seduced by their neighbors, the Iroquois, to show a most sanguinary
spirit of hostility.

For this reason, the life of the inhabitants of the frontier was one
of constant peril and alarm. Many a scene of dismal barbarity was
enacted, as the history of the times testifies, and even those who felt
themselves in some measure protected by their immediate neighbors, the
Delawares, never lost sight of the caution required by their exposed

The vicinity of the military garrison at Pittsburgh, or Fort Pitt,
as it was then called, gave additional security to those who had
pushed further west, among the fertile valleys of the Alleghany and
Monongahela. Among these were the family of Mr. Lytle, who, about two
years previous to the opening of our story, had removed from Path
Valley, near Carlisle, and settled himself on the banks of Plum River,
a tributary of the Alleghany. Here, with his wife and five children,
he had continued to live in comfort and security, undisturbed by any
hostile visit, and only annoyed by occasional false alarms from his
more timorous neighbors, who having had more experience in frontier
life, were prone to anticipate evil, as well as to magnify every
appearance of danger.

       *       *       *       *       *

On a bright afternoon in the autumn of 1779, two children of Mr. Lytle,
a girl of nine, and her brother, two years younger, were playing in
a little dingle or hollow in the rear of their father's house. Some
large trees, which had been recently felled, were lying here and there
still untrimmed of their branches, and many logs, prepared for fuel,
were scattered around. Upon one of these the children, wearied with
their sports, seated themselves, and to beguile the time they fell into
conversation upon a subject that greatly perplexed them.

While playing in the same place a few hours previous, they had imagined
they saw an Indian lurking behind one of the fallen trees. The Indians
of the neighborhood were in the habit of making occasional visits to
the family, and they had become familiar and even affectionate with
many of them, but this seemed a stranger, and after the first hasty
glance they fled in alarm to the house.

Their mother chid them for the report they brought, which she
endeavored to convince them was without foundation. "You know," said
she, "you are always alarming us unnecessarily--the neighbors' children
have frightened you to death. Go back to your play and learn to be more

So the children returned to their sports, hardly persuaded by their
mother's arguments. While they were thus seated upon the trunk of the
tree, their discourse was interrupted by the note, apparently, of a
quail not far off.

"Listen," said the boy, as a second note answered the first, "do you
hear that?"

"Yes," was the reply, and after a few moments' silence, "do you not
hear a rustling among the branches of the tree yonder?"

"Perhaps it is a squirrel--but look! what is that? Surely I saw
something red among the branches. It looked like a fawn popping up its

At this moment, the children who had been gazing so intently in the
direction of the fallen tree that all other objects were forgotten,
felt themselves seized from behind and pinioned in an iron grasp. What
was their horror and dismay to find themselves in the arms of savages,
whose terrific countenances and gestures plainly showed them to be

They made signs to the children to be silent, on pain of death, and
hurried them off, half dead with terror, in a direction leading from
their father's habitation. After travelling some distance in profound
silence, the severity of their captors somewhat relaxed, and as night
approached the party halted, after adopting the usual precautions to
secure themselves against a surprise.

In an agony of uncertainty and terror, torn from their beloved home
and parents, and anticipating all the horrors with which the rumors
of the times had invested a captivity among the Indians--perhaps even
a torturing death--the poor children could no longer restrain their
grief, but gave vent to sobs and lamentations.

Their distress appeared to excite the compassion of one of the party,
a man of mild aspect, who approached and endeavored to soothe them. He
spread them a couch of the long grass which grew near the encamping
place, offered them a portion of his own stock of dried meat and
parched corn, and gave them to understand by signs that no further evil
was intended them.

These kindly demonstrations were interrupted by the arrival of another
party of the enemy, bringing with them the mother of the little
prisoners with her youngest child, an infant of three months old.

It had so happened that the father of the family, with his serving-men,
had gone early in the day to a _raising_ at a few miles' distance,
and the house had thus been left without a defender. The long period
of tranquillity which they had enjoyed, free from all molestation or
alarm from the savages, had quite thrown them off their guard, and they
had recently laid aside some of the caution they had formerly found

These Indians, by lying in wait, had found the favorable moment for
seizing the defenceless family and making them prisoners. Judging from
their paint, and other marks by which the early settlers learned to
distinguish the various tribes, Mrs. Lytle conjectured that those into
whose hands she and her children had fallen were Senecas. Nor was she
mistaken. It was a party of that tribe who had descended from their
village with the intention of falling upon some isolated band of their
enemies, the Delawares, but failing in this, had made themselves amends
by capturing a few white settlers.

It is to be attributed to the generally mild disposition of this tribe,
together with the magnanimous character of the chief who accompanied
the party, that their prisoners in the present instance escaped the
fate of most of the Americans who were so unhappy as to fall into the
hands of the Iroquois.

The children learned from their mother that she was profoundly ignorant
of the fate of their remaining brother and sister, a boy of six and a
little girl of four years of age, but she was in hopes they had made
good their escape with the servant girl, who had likewise disappeared
from the commencement.

After remaining a few hours to recruit the exhausted frames of the
prisoners, the savages again started on their march, one of the older
Indians proffering to relieve the mother from the burden of her infant,
which she had hitherto carried in her arms. Pleased with the unexpected
kindness, she resigned to him her tender charge.

Thus they pursued their way, the savage who carried the infant
lingering somewhat behind the rest of the party, until finding a spot
convenient for his purpose, he grasped his innocent victim by the feet,
and with one whirl, to add strength to the blow, dashed out its brains
against a tree. Leaving the body upon the spot, he rejoined the party.

The mother, unsuspicious of what had passed, regarded him earnestly as
he reappeared without the child--then gazed wildly around on the rest
of the group. Her beloved little one was not there. Its absence spoke
its fate, yet, suppressing the shriek of agony, for she knew that the
lives of the remaining ones depended upon her firmness in that trying
hour, she drew them yet closer to her and pursued her melancholy way
without a word spoken or a question asked.

From the depths of her heart she cried unto Him who is able to save,
and He comforted her with hopes of deliverance for the surviving ones,
for she saw that if blood had been their sole object the scalps of
herself and her children would have been taken upon the spot where they
were made prisoners.

She read too in the eyes of one who was evidently the commander of
the party an expression more merciful than she had even dared to
hope. Particularly had she observed his soothing manner and manifest
partiality towards her eldest child, the little girl of whom we have
spoken, and she built many a bright hope of escape or ransom upon these
slender foundations.

After a toilsome and painful march of many days, the party reached the
Seneca village, upon the headwaters of the Alleghany, near what is
now called Olean Point. On their arrival the chief, their conductor,
who was distinguished by the name of the _Big-White-Man_,[AN] led his
prisoners to the principal lodge. This was occupied by his mother, the
widow of the head-chief of that band, and who was called by them the
_Old Queen_.

[Footnote AN: Although this is the name our mother preserved of
her benefactor, it seems evident that this chief was in fact
_Corn-Planter_, a personage well known in the history of the times.
There could hardly have been two such prominent chiefs in the same

On entering her presence, her son presented her the little girl, saying:

"My mother--I bring you a child to supply the place of my brother, who
was killed by the Lenapé six moons ago. She shall dwell in my lodge,
and be to me a sister. Take the white woman and her children and treat
them kindly--our father will give us many horses and guns to buy them
back again."

He referred to the British Indian agent of his tribe. Col. Johnson,[74]
an excellent and benevolent gentleman, who resided at Fort Niagara, on
the British side of the river of that name.

The old queen fulfilled the injunctions of her son. She received the
prisoners, and every comfort was provided them that her simple and
primitive mode of life rendered possible.

       *       *       *       *       *

We must now return to the place and period at which our story commences.

Late in the evening of that day the father returned to his dwelling.
All within and around was silent and desolate. No trace of a living
creature was to be found throughout the house or grounds. His nearest
neighbors lived at a considerable distance, but to them he hastened,
frantically demanding tidings of his family.

As he aroused them from their slumbers, one and another joined him in
the search, and at length, at the house of one of them, was found the
servant-maid who had effected her escape. Her first place of refuge,
she said, had been a large brewing-tub in an outer kitchen, under which
she had, at the first alarm, secreted herself until the departure of
the Indians, who were evidently in haste, gave her an opportunity of
fleeing to a place of safety. She could give no tidings of her mistress
and the children, except that they had not been murdered in her sight
or hearing.

At length, having scoured the neighborhood without success, Mr. Lytle
remembered an old settler who lived alone, far up the valley. Thither
he and his friends immediately repaired, and from him they learned
that, being at work in his field just before sunset, he had seen a
party of strange Indians passing at a short distance from his cabin.
As they wound along the brow of the hill, he could perceive that they
had prisoners with them--a woman and child. The woman he knew to be a
white, as she carried her infant in her arms instead of upon her back,
after the manner of the savages.

Day had now begun to break, for the night had been passed in fruitless
researches, and the agonized father after a consultation with his kind
friends and neighbors, accepted their offer to accompany him to Fort
Pitt to ask advice and assistance of the Commandant and Indian Agent at
that place.

Proceeding down the valley, as they approached a hut which the night
before they had found apparently deserted, they were startled by
observing two children standing upon the high bank in front of it. The
delighted father recognized two of his missing flock, but no tidings
could they give him of their mother and the other lost ones. Their
story was simple and touching.

They were playing in the garden, when they were alarmed by seeing
the Indians enter the yard near the house. Unperceived by them, the
brother, who was but six years of age, helped his little sister over
the fence into a field overrun with bushes of the blackberry and wild
raspberry. They concealed themselves among these for a while, and then,
finding all quiet, they attempted to force their way to the side of
the field furthest from the house. Unfortunately the little girl in
her play in the garden had pulled off her shoes and stockings, and the
briars tearing and wounding her tender feet, she with difficulty could
refrain from crying out. Her brother took off his stockings and put
them on her feet. He attempted, too, to protect them with his shoes,
but they were too large, and kept slipping off, so that she could not
wear them. For a time, they persevered in making what they considered
their escape from certain death, for, as I have said, the children had
been taught by the tales they had heard to regard all strange Indians
as ministers of torture, and of horrors worse than death. Exhausted
with pain and fatigue, the poor little girl at length declared she
could go no further.

"Then, Maggie," said her brother, "I must kill you, for I cannot let
you be killed by the Indians."

"Oh! no, Thomas," pleaded she, "do not, pray do not kill me--I do not
think the Indians will find us!"

"Oh! yes they will, Maggie, and I could kill you so much easier than
they would!"

For a long time he endeavored to persuade her, and even looked about
for a stick sufficiently large for his purpose, but despair gave the
little creature strength, and she promised her brother that she would
neither complain nor falter, if he would assist her in making her way
out of the field.

The idea of the little boy that he could save his sister from savage
barbarity by taking her life himself, shows what tales of horror the
children of the early settlers were familiar with.

After a few more efforts they made their way out of the field, into an
unenclosed pasture-ground, where to their great delight they saw some
cows feeding. They recognized them as belonging to Granny Myers, an old
woman who lived at some little distance, but in what direction from the
place they then were, they were utterly ignorant.

With a sagacity beyond his years, the boy said:

"Let us hide ourselves till sunset, when the cows will go home, and we
will follow them."

They did so, but to their dismay, when they reached Granny Myers'
they found the house deserted. The old woman had been called by some
business down the valley and did not return that night.

Tired and hungry they could go no further, but after an almost
fruitless endeavor to get some milk from the cows, they laid themselves
down to sleep under an old bedstead that stood behind the house. Their
father and his party had caused them additional terror in the night.
The shouts and calls which had been designed to arouse the inmates of
the house, they had mistaken for the whoop of the Indians, and not
being able to distinguish friends from foes, they had crept close to
one another, as far out of sight as possible. When found the following
morning, they were debating what course to take next, for safety.

The commandant at Fort Pitt entered warmly into the affairs of Mr.
Lytle, and readily furnished him with a detachment of soldiers, to aid
him and his friends in the pursuit of the marauders. Some circumstances
having occurred to throw suspicion upon the Senecas, the party soon
directed their search among the villages of that tribe.

Their inquiries were prosecuted in various directions, and always
with great caution, for all the tribes of the Iroquois, or, as they
pompously called themselves, the Five Nations, being allies of Great
Britain, were consequently inveterate in their hostility to the
Americans. Thus, some time had elapsed before the father with his
attendants reached the village of the _Big-White-Man_.

A treaty was immediately entered into for the ransom of the captives,
which was easily accomplished in regard to Mrs. Lytle and the younger
child. But no offers, no entreaties, no promises, could procure the
release of the little Eleanor, the adopted child of the tribe. "No,"
the chief said, "she was his sister; he had taken her to supply the
place of his brother who was killed by the enemy--she was dear to him,
and he would not part with her."

Finding every effort unavailing to shake this resolution the father was
at length compelled to take his sorrowful departure with such of his
beloved ones as he had the good fortune to recover.

We will not attempt to depict the grief of parents compelled thus to
give up a darling child, and to leave her in the hands of savages,
whom until now they had too much reason to regard as merciless. But
there was no alternative. Commending her to the care of their Heavenly
Father, and cheered by the manifest tenderness with which she had thus
far been treated, they sat out on their melancholy journey homeward,
trusting that some future effort would be more effectual for the
recovery of their little girl.

Having placed his family in safety at Pittsburgh, Mr. Lytle, still
assisted by the Commandant and the Indian Agent, undertook an
expedition to the frontier to the residence of the British agent. Col.
Johnson. His representation of the case warmly interested the feelings
of that benevolent officer, who promised him to spare no exertions in
his behalf. This promise he religiously performed. He went in person to
the village of the Big-White-Man, as soon as the opening of the spring
permitted, and offered him many splendid presents of guns and horses,
but the chief was inexorable.

Time rolled on, and every year the hope of recovering the little
captive became more faint. She, in the meantime, continued to wind
herself more and more closely around the heart of her Indian brother.
Nothing could exceed the consideration and affection with which she
was treated, not only by himself, but by his mother, the _Old Queen_.
All their stock of brooches and wampum was employed in the decoration
of her person. The principal seat and the most delicate viands were
invariably reserved for her, and no efforts were spared to promote her
happiness, and to render her forgetful of her former home and kindred.

Thus, though she had beheld, with a feeling almost amounting to
despair, the departure of her parents and dear little brother, and had
for a long time resisted every attempt at consolation, preferring even
death to a life of separation from all she loved, yet time, as it ever
does, brought its soothing balm, and she at length grew contented and

From her activity and the energy of her character, qualities for which
she was remarkable to the latest period of her life, the name was given
her of _The Ship under full sail_.

       *       *       *       *       *

The only drawback to the happiness of the little prisoner, aside from
her longings after her own dear home, was the enmity she encountered
from the wife of the Big-White-Man. This woman, from the day of her
arrival at the village, and adoption into the family as a sister, had
conceived for her the greatest animosity, which, at first, she had the
prudence to conceal from the observation of her husband.

It was perhaps natural that a wife should give way to some feelings of
jealousy at seeing her own place in the heart of her husband usurped,
as she imagined, by the child of their enemy, the American. But these
feelings were aggravated by a bad and vindictive temper, and by the
indifference with which her husband listened to her complaints and

As she had no children of her own to engage her attention, her mind
was the more engrossed and inflamed with her fancied wrongs, and with
devising means for their redress. An opportunity of attempting the
latter was not long wanting.

During the absence of the Big-White-Man upon some war-party, or hunting
excursion, his little sister was taken ill with fever and ague. She was
nursed with the utmost tenderness by the Old Queen, and the wife of
the chief, to lull suspicion, and thereby accomplish her purpose, was
likewise unwearied in her assiduities to the little favorite.

One afternoon, during the temporary absence of the Old Queen, her
daughter-in-law entered the lodge with a bowl of something she had
prepared, and stooping down to the mat on which the child lay, said, in
an affectionate accent:

"Drink, my sister, I have brought you that which will drive this fever
far from you."

On raising her head to reply, the little girl perceived a pair of eyes
peeping through a crevice in the lodge, and fixed upon her with a very
peculiar and significant expression. With the quick perception acquired
partly from nature, and partly from her intercourse with this people,
she replied faintly:

"Set it down, my sister. When this fit of the fever has passed, I will
drink your medicine."

The squaw, too cautious to use importunity, busied herself about in
the lodge for a short time, then withdrew to another, near at hand.
Meantime, the bright eyes continued peering through the opening, until
they had watched their object fairly out of sight, then a low voice,
the voice of a young friend and play-fellow, spoke:

"Do not drink that which your brother's wife has brought you. She
hates you, and is only waiting an opportunity to rid herself of you. I
have watched her all the morning, and have seen her gathering the most
deadly herbs. I knew for whom they were intended, and came hither to
warn you."

"Take the bowl," said the little invalid, "and carry it to my mother's

This was accordingly done. The contents of the bowl were found to
consist principally of a decoction of the root of the May-apple, the
most deadly poison known among the Indians.

It is not in the power of language to describe the indignation that
pervaded the little community when this discovery was made known. The
squaws ran to and fro, as is their custom when excited, each vying with
the other in heaping invectives upon the culprit. No further punishment
was, however, for the present inflicted upon her, but the first burst
of rage over, she was treated with silent abhorrence.

The little patient was removed to the lodge of the Old Queen, and
strictly guarded, while her enemy was left to wander in silence and
solitude about the fields and woods, until the return of her husband
should determine her punishment.

In a few days, the excursion being over, the Big-White-Man and his
party returned to the village. Contrary to the usual custom of savages,
he did not, in his first transport at learning the attempt on the
life of his little sister, take summary vengeance on the offender. He
contented himself with banishing her from his lodge, never to return,
and condemning her to hoe corn in a distant part of the large field or
enclosure which served the whole community for a garden.

Although she would still show her vindictive disposition whenever,
by chance, the little girl with her companions wandered into that
vicinity by striking at her with her hoe, or by some other spiteful
manifestation, yet she was either too well watched, or stood too much
in awe of her former husband, to repeat the attempt upon his sister's

       *       *       *       *       *

Four years had now elapsed since the capture of little Nelly. Her heart
was by nature warm and affectionate, so that the unbounded tenderness
of those she dwelt among had called forth a corresponding feeling of
affection in her heart. She regarded the Chief and his mother with love
and reverence, and had so completely learned their language and customs
as almost to have forgotten her own.

So identified had she become with the tribe, that the remembrance of
her home and family had nearly faded from her memory; all but her
mother--her mother whom she had loved with a strength of affection
natural to her warm and ardent character, and to whom her heart still
clung with a fondness that no time or change could destroy.

The peace of 1783 between Great Britain and the United States now took
place. A general pacification of the Indian tribes was the consequence,
and fresh hopes were renewed in the bosoms of Mr. and Mrs. Lytle.

They removed with their family to Fort Niagara, near which, on the
American side, was the great _Council Fire_ of the Senecas. Col.
Johnson readily undertook a fresh negotiation with the Chief, but in
order to ensure every chance of success, he again proceeded in person
to the village of the Big-White-Man.

His visit was most opportune. It was the "Feast of the Green Corn,"
when he arrived among them. This observance, which corresponds so
strikingly with the Jewish feast of Tabernacles that, together with
other customs, it has led many to believe the Indian nations the
descendants of the lost ten tribes of Israel, made it a season of
general joy and festivity. All other occupations were suspended to
give place to social enjoyment in the open air, or in arbors formed of
the green branches of the trees. Every one appeared in his gala dress.
That of the little adopted child consisted of a petticoat of blue
broadcloth, bordered with gay-colored ribbons; a sack or upper garment
of black silk, ornamented with three rows of silver brooches, the
centre ones from the throat to the hem being of large size, and those
from the shoulders down being no larger than a shilling-piece, and set
as closely as possible. Around her neck were innumerable strings of
white and purple wampum, an Indian ornament manufactured from the inner
surface of the muscle-shell. Her hair was clubbed behind, and loaded
with beads of various colors. Leggings of scarlet cloth, and moccasins
of deer-skin embroidered with porcupine quills, completed her costume.

Col. Johnson was received with all the consideration due to his
position, and to the long friendship that had subsisted between him and
the tribe.

Observing that the hilarity of the festival had warmed and opened all
hearts, he took occasion in an interview with the chief to expatiate
upon the parental affection which had led the father and mother of his
little sister to give up their friends and home, and come hundreds
of miles away, in the single hope of sometimes looking upon and
embracing her. The heart of the chief softened as he listened to this
representation, and he was induced to promise that at the Grand Council
soon to be held at Fort Niagara he would attend, bringing his little
sister with him.

He exacted a promise, however, from Col. Johnson, that not only
no effort should be made to reclaim the child, but that even no
proposition to part with her should be offered him.

The time at length arrived when, her heart bounding with joy, little
Nelly was placed on horseback to accompany her Indian brother to the
great Council of the Senecas. She had promised him that she would never
leave him without his permission, and he relied confidently on her word
thus given.

As the chiefs and warriors arrived in successive bands to meet their
father, the agent, at the council-fire, how did the anxious hearts of
the parents beat with alternate hope and fear! The officers of the fort
had kindly given them quarters for the time being, and the ladies,
whose sympathies were strongly excited, had accompanied the mother to
the place of council, and joined in her longing watch for the first
appearance of the band from the Alleghany river.

At length they were discerned, emerging from the forest on the opposite
or American side. Boats were sent across by the Commanding Officer,
to bring the chief and his party. The father and mother, attended by
all the officers and ladies, stood upon the grassy bank awaiting their
approach. They had seen at a glance that the _little captive_ was with

When about to enter the boat, the chief said to some of his young men,
"stand here with the horses, and wait until I return."

He was told that the horses should be ferried across and taken care of.

"No," said he, "let them wait."

He held his darling by the hand until the river was passed--until the
boat touched the bank--until the child sprang forward into the arms of
the mother from whom she had been so long separated.

When the Chief witnessed that outburst of affection he could withstand
no longer.

"She shall go," said he. "The mother must have her child again. I will
go back alone."

With one silent gesture of farewell he turned and stepped on board the
boat. No arguments or entreaties could induce him to remain at the
council, but having gained the other side of the Niagara, he mounted
his horse, and with his young men was soon lost in the depths of the

After a sojourn of a few weeks at Niagara, Mr. Lytle, dreading lest
the resolution of the Big-White-Man should give way, and measures be
taken to deprive him once more of his child, came to the determination
of again changing his place of abode. He therefore took the first
opportunity of crossing Lake Erie with his family, and settled himself
in the neighborhood of Detroit, where he continued afterward to reside.

_Little Nelly_ saw her friend the Chief no more, but she never
forgot him. To the day of her death she remembered with tenderness
and gratitude her brother, the Big-White-Man, and her friends and
playfellows among the Senecas.



At the age of fourteen the heroine of the foregoing story married
Captain McKillip, a British officer. This gentleman was killed near
Fort Defiance, as it was afterward called, at the Miami Rapids, in
1794. A detachment of British troops had been sent down from Detroit,
to take possession of this post. Gen. Wayne was then on a campaign
against the Indians, and the British Government thought proper to make
a few demonstrations in behalf of their allies. Having gone out with a
party to reconnoitre, Captain McKillip was returning to his post after
dark, when he was fired upon and killed by one of his own sentinels.
Mrs. Helm was the daughter of this marriage.

During the widowhood of Mrs. McKillip she resided with her parents
at Grosse Pointe, eight miles above Detroit, and it was during this
period that an event occurred, which from the melancholy and mysterious
circumstances attending it, was always dwelt upon by her with peculiar

Her second brother, Thomas Lytle, was, from his amiable and
affectionate character, the most dearly beloved by her of all the
numerous family circle. He was paying his addresses to a young lady who
resided at the river Trench,[AO] as it was then called, now the river
Thames, a stream emptying into Lake St. Clair, about twenty miles above
Detroit. In visiting this young lady, it was his custom to cross the
Detroit river by the ferry with his horse, and then proceed by land to
the river Trench, which was, at some seasons of the year, a fordable

[Footnote AO: From the French--_Tranche_, a deep cut.]

On a fine forenoon, late in the spring, he had taken leave of his
mother and sister for one of these periodical visits, which were
usually of two or three days' duration.

After dinner, as his sister was sitting at work by an open window which
looked upon a little side enclosure filled with fruit-trees, she was
startled by observing some object opposite the window, between her
and the light. She raised her eyes and saw her brother Thomas. He was
without his horse, and carried his saddle upon his shoulders.

Surprised that she had not heard the gate opening for his entrance, and
also at his singular appearance, laden in that manner, she addressed
him, and inquired what had happened, and why he had returned so soon.
He made her no reply, but looked earnestly in her face, as he moved
slowly along the paved walk that led to the stables.

She waited a few moments expecting he would reappear to give an account
of himself and his adventures, but at length, growing impatient at his
delay, she put down her work and went towards the rear of the house to
find him.

The first person she met was her mother. "Have you seen Thomas?" she

"Thomas! He has gone to the river Trench."

"No, he has returned--I saw him pass the window not fifteen minutes

"Then he will be in presently."

His sister, however, could not wait. She proceeded to the stables, she
searched in all directions. No Thomas--no horse--no saddle. She made
inquiry of the domestics. No one had seen him. She then returned and
told her mother what had happened.

"You must have fallen asleep and dreamed it," said her mother.

"No, indeed! I was wide awake--I spoke to him, and he gave me no
answer, but such a look!"

All the afternoon she felt an uneasiness she could not reason herself
out of.

The next morning came a messenger from the river Trench with dismal

The bodies of the young man and his horse had been found drowned a
short distance below the ford of the river.

It appeared that on arriving at the bank of the river, he found it
swollen beyond its usual depth by the recent rains. It being necessary
to swim the stream with his horse, he had taken off his clothes and
made them into a packet which he fastened upon his shoulders. It
was supposed that the strength of the rapid torrent displaced the
bundle, which thus served to draw his head under water and keep it
there, without the power of raising it. All this was gathered from the
position and appearance of the bodies when found.

From the time at which he had been seen passing a house which stood
near the stream, on his way to the ford, it was evident that he must
have met his fate at the very moment his sister saw, or thought she saw
him, passing before her.

I could not but suggest the inquiry, when these sad particulars were
narrated to me:

"Mother, is it not possible this might have been a dream?"

"A dream? No, indeed, my child. I was perfectly wide awake--as much so
as I am at this moment. I am not superstitious. I have never believed
in ghosts or witches, but nothing can ever persuade me that this was
not a warning sent from God, to prepare me for my brother's death."

And those who knew her rational good sense--her freedom from fancies or
fears, and the calm self-possession that never deserted her under the
most trying circumstances, would almost be won to view the matter in
the light she did.

       *       *       *       *       *

The order for the evacuation of the post, and the removal of the troops
to Fort Howard (Green Bay), had now been received.[75] The family
circle was to be broken up. Our mother, our sister Mrs. Helm, and her
little son, were to return with us to Fort Winnebago--the other members
of the family, except Robert, were to move with the command to Green

Before the time for our departure, however. Colonel Owen, the new
Indian Agent, arrived to take up his residence at the place. Col. R. J.
Hamilton, also, on a visit of business, expressed his determination to
make Chicago his future home. This may be considered the first impulse
given to the place--the first step towards its subsequent unexampled
growth and prosperity.

The schooner Napoleon was to be sent from Detroit to convey the troops
with their goods and chattels to their destined post. Our immediate
party was to make the journey by land--we were to choose, however,
a shorter and pleasanter route than the one we had taken in coming
hither. My husband with his Frenchmen, Petaille Grignon and Simon
Lecuyer, had arrived, and all hands were now busily occupied with the
necessary preparations for breaking up and removal.

I should be doing injustice to the hospitable settlers of Hickory Creek
were I to pass by, without notice, an entertainment with which they
honored our Chicago beaux about this time. The merry-making was to be
a ball, and the five single gentlemen of Chicago were invited. Mr.
Dole, who was a new-comer, declined--Lieut. Foster was on duty, but
he did what was still better than accepting the invitation, he loaned
his beautiful horse to Medard Beaubien, and he, with Robert Kinzie and
Gholson Kercheval, promised themselves much fun in eclipsing the beaux
and creating a sensation among the _belles_ of Hickory Creek.

Chicago was then, as now, looked upon as _the City_ par excellence. Its
few inhabitants were supposed to have seen something of the world, and
it is to be inferred that the arrival of the smart and dashing young
men was an event looked forward to with more satisfaction by the fair
of the little settlement than by the swains whose rivals they might

The day arrived and the gentlemen set off in high spirits. The took
care to be in good season, for the dancing was to commence at two
o'clock in the afternoon. They were well mounted, each priding himself
upon the animal he rode, and they wore their best suits, as became city
gallants who were bent on cutting out their less fashionable neighbors,
and breaking the hearts of the admiring country damsels.

When they arrived at the place appointed, they were received with great
politeness--their steeds were taken care of--a dinner provided them,
after which they were ushered into the dancing-hall.

All the beauty of the neighboring precincts was assembled. The ladies
were for the most part white, or what passed for such, with an
occasional dash of copper color. There was no lack of bombazet gowns
and large white pocket-handkerchiefs, perfumed with oil of cinnamon;
and as they took their places in long rows on the puncheon floor, they
were a merry and a happy company.

But the city gentlemen grew more and more gallant--the girls more
and more delighted with their attentions--the country swains, alas!
more and more scowling and jealous. In vain they pigeon-winged and
double-shuffled--in vain they nearly dislocated hips and shoulders at
"hoe corn and dig potatoes"--they had the mortification to perceive
that the smart young sprigs from Chicago had their pick and choose
among their very sweethearts, and that they themselves were fairly
danced off the ground.

The revelry lasted until daylight, and it was now time to think of
returning. There was no one ready with obliging politeness to bring
them their horses from the stable.

"Poor fellows!" said one of the party, with a compassionate sort of
laugh, "they could not stand it. They have gone home to bed!"

"Serves them right," said another, "they'd better not ask us down among
their girls again!"

They groped their way to the stable and went in. There were some
animals standing at the manger, but evidently not their horses. What
could they be? Had the rogues been trying to cheat them, by putting
these strange nondescripts into their place?

They led them forth into the gray of the morning, and then, such a trio
as met their gaze!

There were the original bodies, it is true, but where were their
manes and tails? A scrubby, picketty ridge along the neck, and a bare
stump projecting behind were all that remained of the flowing honors
with which they had come gallivanting down to "bear away the bell" at
Hickory Creek, or, in the emphatic language of the country, "to take
the rag off the bush."

Gholson sat down on a log and cried outright. Medard took the matter
more philosophically--the horse was none of his--it was Lieut.

Robert characteristically looked around to see whom he could knock down
on the occasion, but there was no one visible on whom to wreak their

The bumpkins had stolen away, and in some safe, quiet nook, were snugly
enjoying their triumph, and doubtless the deceitful fair ones were, by
this time, sharing their mirth and exultation.

The unlucky gallants mounted their steeds, and set their faces
homeward. Never was there a more crestfallen and sorry-looking
cavalcade. The poor horses seemed to realize that they had met the
same treatment as the messengers of King David at the hands of the
evil-disposed Hanun. They hung their heads, and evidently wished that
they could have "tarried at Jericho" for a season. Unfortunately there
was in those days no back way by which they could steal in, unobserved.
Across the prairie, in view of the whole community, must their approach
be made, and to add to their confusion, in the rarity of stirring
events, it was the custom of the whole settlement to turn out and
welcome the arrival of any new-comer.

As hasty a retreat as possible was beaten, amid the shouts, the jeers,
and the condolences of their acquaintances, and it is on record that
these three young gentlemen were in no hurry to accept, at any future
time, an invitation to partake of the festivities of Hickory Creek.

       *       *       *       *       *

In due time the Napoleon made her appearance. (Alas! that this great
name should be used in the feminine gender!) As there was at this
period no harbor, vessels anchored outside the bar, or tongue of land
which formed the left bank of the river, and the lading and unlading
were carried on by boats, pulling in and out, through the mouth of the
river, some distance below. Of course it always was a matter of great
importance to get a vessel loaded as quickly as possible that she might
be ready to take advantage of the first fair wind, and be off from such
an exposed and hazardous anchoring ground.

For this reason we had lived _packed up_ for many days, intending only
to see our friends safe on board, and then commence our own journey.

Our heavy articles of furniture, trunks, &c., had been sent on board
the Napoleon to be brought round to us by way of Fox River. We had
retained only such few necessaries as could be conveniently carried
on a pack-horse, and in a light dearborn wagon lately brought by Mr.
Kercheval from Detroit (the first luxury of the kind ever seen on the
prairies), and which my husband had purchased as an agreeable mode of
conveyance for his mother and little nephew.

It was a matter requiring no small amount of time and labor to
transport, in the slow method described, the effects of so many
families of officers and soldiers--the company's stores, and all the
various et ceteras incident to a total change and removal. It was all,
however, happily accomplished--everything, even the last article sent
on board--nothing remaining on shore but the passengers, whose turn it
was next.

It was a moment of great relief, for Capt. Hinckley had been in a fever
and a fuss many hours, predicting a change of weather, and murmuring
at what he thought the unnecessary amount of boat-loads to be taken on

Those who had leisure to be looking out toward the schooner which had
continued anchored about half a mile out in the lake, had, at this
crisis, the satisfaction to see her hoist sail and leave her station
for the open lake--those who were a little later could just discern
her bearing away to a distance, as if she had got all on board that she
had any idea of taking. Here we were and here we might remain a week or
more, if it pleased Capt. Hinckley and the schooner Napoleon, and the
good east wind which was blowing with all its might.

There was plenty of provisions to be obtained, so the fear of
starvation was not the trouble, but how were the cooking and the table
to be provided for? Various expedients were resorted to. Mrs. Engle,
in her quarters above stairs, ate her breakfast off a shingle with her
husband's jack-knife, and when she had finished, sent them down to
Lieut. Foster for his accommodation.

We were at the old mansion on the north side, and the news soon flew
up the river that the Napoleon had gone off with "the plunder," and
left the people behind. It was not long before we were supplied by Mrs.
Portier (our kind Victoire), with dishes, knives, forks, and all the
other conveniences which our mess-basket failed to supply.

This state of things lasted a couple of days, and then, early one fine
morning the gratifying intelligence spread like wild-fire that the
Napoleon was at anchor out beyond the bar.

There was no unnecessary delay this time, and at an early hour in the
afternoon we had taken leave of our dear friends, and they were sailing
away from Chicago.[AP]

[Footnote AP: It is a singular fact that all the martins, of which
there were great numbers occupying the little houses constructed for
them by the soldiers, were observed to have disappeared from their
homes on the morning following the embarkation of the troops. After an
absence of five days they returned. They had perhaps taken a fancy to
accompany their old friends, but, finding they were not Mother Carey's
chickens, deemed it most prudent to return and reoccupy their old



A great part of the command, with the cattle belonging to the officers
and soldiers, had a day or two previous to the time of our departure,
set out on their march by land to Green Bay, _via_ Fort Winnebago.
Lieut. Foster, under whose charge they were, had lingered behind that
he might have the pleasure of joining our party, and we, in turn, had
delayed in order to see the other members of our family safely on board
the Napoleon. But now, all things being ready, we set our faces once
more homeward.

We took with us a little _bound-girl_, Josette (a daughter of
Ouilmette, a Frenchman who had lived here at the time of the Massacre,
and of a Pottowattamie mother), a bright, pretty child of ten years of
age. She had been at the St. Joseph's mission-school, under Mr. McCoy,
and she was now full of delight at the prospect of a journey all the
way to the Portage with Monsieur and Madame Jolm.

We had also a negro boy, Harry, brought a year before from Kentucky,
by Mr. Kercheval. In the transfer at that time from a slave State to
a free one, Harry's position became somewhat changed--he could be no
more than an indentured servant. He was about to become a member of Dr.
Wolcott's household, and it was necessary for him to choose a guardian.
All this was explained to him on his being brought into the parlor,
where the family were assembled. My husband was then a young man, on a
visit to his home. "Now, Harry," it was said to him, "you must choose
your guardian;" and the natural expectation was that Harry would select
the person of his acquaintance of the greatest age and dignity. But,
rolling round his great eyes, and hanging his head on one side, he said,

"I'll have Master John for my guardian."

From that day forward Harry felt as if he belonged, in a measure, to
Master John, and at the breaking up of the family in Chicago he was,
naturally, transferred to our establishment.

There were three ladies of our travelling party--our mother, our sister
Mrs. Helm, and myself. To guard against the burning effect of the sun
and the prairie winds upon our faces, I had, during some of the last
days of my visit, prepared for each of us a mask of brown linen, with
the eyes, nose, and mouth fitted to accommodate our features; and to
enhance the hideousness of each, I had worked eye-brows, lashes, and
a circle around the opening for the mouth in black silk. Gathered in
plaits under the chin, and with strings to confine them above and
below, they furnished a complete protection against the sun and wind,
though nothing can be imagined more frightful than the appearance we
presented when fully equipped. It was who should be called the ugliest.

We left amid the good wishes and laughter of our few remaining
acquaintances, of whom we now took leave. Our wagon had been provided
with a pair of excellent travelling horses, and sister Margaret and
myself accommodated with the best pacers the country could afford, and
we set off in high spirits toward the Aux Plaines--our old friend,
Billy Caldwell (the Sau-ga-nash), with our brother Robert and Gholson
Kercheval, accompanying us to that point of our journey.

There was no one at Barney Lawton's when we reached there but a
Frenchman and a small number of Indians. The latter in their eagerness
to say "bonjour," and shake hands with Shaw-nee-aw-kee, passed us by,
apparently without observation, so my sister and I dismounted and
entered the dwelling, the door of which stood open. Two Indians were
seated on the floor smoking. They raised their eyes as we appeared,
and never shall I forget the expression of wonder and horror depicted
on the countenances of both. Their lips relaxed until the pipe of one
fell upon the floor. Their eyes seemed starting from their heads, and
raising their outspread hands, as if to wave us from them, they slowly
ejaculated, "_Manitou!_" (a spirit).

As we raised our masks, and, smiling, came forward to shake hands with
them, they sprang to their feet and fairly uttered a cry of delight at
the sight of our familiar faces.

"Bonjour, bonjour, Maman!" was their salutation, and they instantly
plunged out of doors to relate to their companions what had happened.

Our afternoon's ride was over a prairie stretching away to the
north-east. No living creature was to be seen upon its broad expanse,
but flying and circling over our heads were innumerable flocks of

    "Screaming their wild notes to the listening waste."

Their peculiar shrill cry of "crack, crack, crack--rackety, rackety,
rackety," repeated from the throats of dozens as they sometimes stooped
quite close to our ears, became at length almost unbearable. It seemed
as if they had lost their senses in the excitement of so unusual and
splendid a cortége in their hitherto desolate domain.

The accelerated pace of our horses as we approached a beautiful wooded
knoll, warned us that this was to be our place of repose for the night.
These animals seem to know by instinct a favorable encamping-ground,
and this was one of the most lovely imaginable.

The trees, which near the lake had, owing to the coldness and tardiness
of the season, presented the pale-yellow appearance of unfledged
goslings, were here bursting into full leaf. The ground around was
carpeted with flowers--we could not bear to have them crushed by the
felling of a tree and the pitching of our tent among them. The birds
sent forth their sweetest notes in the warm, lingering sunshine, and
the opening buds of the young hickory and sassafras filled the air with

Nothing could be more perfect than our enjoyment of this sylvan and
beautiful retreat[AQ] after our ride in the glowing sun. The children
were in ecstasies. They delighted to find ways of making themselves
useful--to pile up the saddles--to break boughs for the fire--to fill
the little kettles with water for Petaille and Lecuyer, the Frenchmen
who were preparing our supper.

[Footnote AQ: It is now known as Dunkley's Grove.]

Their amusement at the awkward movements of the horses after they were
spancelled knew no bounds. To Edwin everything was new, and Josette,
who had already made more than one horseback journey to St. Joseph's,
manifested all the pride of an old traveller in explaining to him
whatever was novel or unaccountable.

They were not the last to spring up at the call "how! how!" on the
following morning.

The fire was replenished, the preparations for breakfast commenced, and
the Frenchmen dispatched to bring up the horses in readiness for an
early start.

Harry and Josette played their parts, under our direction, in preparing
the simple meal, and we soon seated ourselves, each with cup and knife,
around the _table-mat_. The meal was over, but no men, no horses
appeared. When another half-hour had passed, my husband took Harry and
commenced exploring in search of the missing ones.

The day wore on, and first one of them and then another would make his
appearance to report progress. Petaille and Lecuyer at length brought
two of the horses, but the others could nowhere be found. In time, Mr.
Kinzie and Harry returned, wet to their knees by the dew upon the long
prairie grass, but with no tidings. Again the men were dispatched after
having broken their fast, but returned as unsuccessful as before.

The morning had been occupied by our party at the encampment in
speculating upon the missing animals.

Could they have been stolen by the Indians? Hardly--these people seldom
committed robberies in time of peace--never upon our family, whom they
regarded as their best friends. The horses would doubtless be found.
They had probably been carelessly fastened the preceding evening, and
therefore been able to stray further than was their wont.

A council was held, at which it was decided to send Grignon back to
Chicago to get some fresh horses from Gholson Kercheval, and return as
speedily as possible. If on his return our encampment were deserted,
he might conclude we had found the horses and proceeded to Fox River,
where he would doubtless overtake us.

Upon reflection, it was thought best to send him once more in the
direction of Salt Creek, when, if still unsuccessful, the former
alternative could be adopted.

He had not been gone more than an hour, before, slowly hopping out of
a point of woods to the north of us (a spot which each of the seekers
averred he had explored over and over again), and making directly for
the place where we were, appeared the vexatious animals. They came up
as demurely as if nothing had happened, and seemed rather surprised
to be received with a hearty scolding, instead of being patted and
caressed as usual.

It was the work of a very short half hour to strike and pack the tent,
stow away the mats and kettles, saddle the horses and mount for our

"Whoever pleases may take my place in the carriage," said our mother.
"I have travelled so many years on horseback, that I find any other
mode of conveyance too fatiguing."

So, spite of her sixty years, she mounted sister Margaret's pacer with
the activity of a girl of sixteen.

Lieut. Foster had left us early in the morning, feeling it necessary to
rejoin his command, and now, having seen us ready to set off, with a
serene sky above us, and all things "right and tight" for the journey,
our friend the Sau-ga-nash took leave of us, and retraced his steps
towards Chicago.

We pursued our way through a lovely country of alternate glade and
forest, until we reached the Fox River.[76] The current ran clear and
rippling along, and as we descended the steep bank to the water, the
question, so natural to a traveller in an unknown region, presented
itself, "Is it fordable?"

Petaille, to whom the ground was familiar, had not yet made his
appearance. Lecuyer was quite ignorant upon the subject. The troops
had evidently preceded us by this very trail. True, but they were on
horseback--the difficulty was, could we get the carriage through? It
must be remembered, that the doubt was not about the depth of the
water, but about the hardness of the bottom of the stream.

It was agreed that two or three of the equestrians should make the
trial first. My mother, Lecuyer and myself advanced cautiously across
to the opposite bank, each choosing a different point for leaving the
water, in order to find the firmest spot. The bottom was hard and firm
until we came near the shore, then it yielded a little. With one step,
however, we were each on dry ground.

"Est-il beau?" called my husband, who was driving.

"Oui, Monsieur."

"Yes, John, come just here, it is perfectly good."

"No, no--go a little further down. See the white gravel just there--it
will be firmer still, there."

Such were the contradictory directions given. He chose the latter, and
when it wanted but one step more to the bank, down sunk both horses,
until little more than their backs were visible.

The white gravel proved to be a bed of treacherous yellow clay, which
gleaming through the water, had caused so unfortunate a deception.

With frantic struggles, for they were nearly suffocated with mud and
water, the horses made desperate efforts to free themselves from the
harness. My husband sprang out upon the pole. "Some one give me a
knife," he cried. I was back in the water in a moment, and approaching
as near as I dared, handed him mine from the scabbard around my neck.

"Whatever you do, do not cut the traces," cried his mother.

He severed some of the side-straps, when just as he had reached the
extremity of the pole, and was stretching forward to separate the
head-couplings, one of the horses gave a furious plunge, which caused
his fellow to rear and throw himself nearly backwards. My husband was
between them. For a moment we thought he was gone--trampled down by
the excited animals, but he presently showed himself, nearly obscured
by the mud and water. With the agility of a cat, Harry, who was near
him, now sprung forward on the pole, and in an instant, with his sharp
jack-knife which he had ready, divided the straps that confined their

The horses were at this moment lying floating on the water--one
apparently dead, the other as if gasping out his last breath. But
hardly did they become sensible of the release of their heads from
bondage than they made, simultaneously, another furious effort to free
themselves from the pole to which they were still attached by the

Failing in this, they tried another expedient, and by a few judicious
twists and turns, succeeded in wrenching the pole asunder, and finally
carried it off in triumph across the river again, and up the bank,
where they stood waiting to decide what were the next steps to be taken.

Here was a predicament! A few hours before we had thought ourselves
uncomfortable enough, because some of our horses were missing. Now, a
greater evil had befallen us. The wagon was in the river, the harness
cut to pieces, and, what was worse, carried off in the most independent
manner, by Tom and his companion; the pole was twisted to pieces, and
there was not so much as a stick on that side of the river with which
to replace it.

At this moment, a whoop from the opposite bank, echoed by two or three
hearty ones from our party, announced the reappearance of Petaille
Grignon. He dismounted and took charge of the horses, who were resting
themselves after their fatigues under a shady tree, and by this time
Lecuyer had crossed the river and now joined him in bringing back the

In the meantime we had been doing our best to minister to our sister
Margaret. Both she and her little son Edwin had been in the wagon at
the time of the accident, and it had been a work of some difficulty
to get them out and bring them on horseback to shore. The effect of
the agitation and excitement was to throw her into a fit of the ague,
and she now lay blue and trembling among the long grass of the little
prairie, which extended along the bank. The tent, which had been packed
in the rear of the wagon, was too much saturated with mud and water to
admit of its being used as a shelter; it could only be stretched in the
sun to dry. We opened an umbrella over our poor sister's head, and now
began a discussion of ways and means to repair damages. The first thing
was to cut a new pole for the wagon, and for this, the master and men
must recross the river and choose an _iron-tree_ out of the forest.

Then, for the harness. With provident care, a little box had been
placed under the seat of the wagon, containing an awl, waxed-ends, and
various other little conveniences exactly suited to an emergency like
the present.

It was question and answer, like Cock Robin:

"Who can mend the harness?"

"I can, for I learned when I was a young girl to make shoes as _an
accomplishment_, and I can surely now, as a matter of usefulness and
duty, put all those wet, dirty pieces of leather together."

So, we all seated ourselves on the grass, under the shade of the only
two umbrellas we could muster.

I stitched away diligently, blistering my hands, I must own, in no
small degree.

A suitable young tree had been brought, and the hatchets, without which
one never travels in the woods, were all busy, fashioning it into
shape, when a peculiar hissing noise was heard, and instantly the cry,

"_Un serpent sonnette!_ A rattlesnake!"

All sprang to their feet, even the poor shaking invalid, just in time
to see the reptile glide past within three inches of my mother's feet,
while the men assailed the spot it had left with whips, missives, and
whatever would help along the commotion.

This little incident proved an excellent remedy for the ague. One
excitement drives away another, and by means of this, (upon the
homœopathic principle), sister Margaret was so much improved that
by the time all the mischiefs were repaired, she was ready to take her
place in the cavalcade, as bright and cheerful as the rest of us.

So great had been the delay occasioned by all these untoward
circumstances, that our afternoon's ride was but a short one, bringing
us no further than the shores of a beautiful sheet of water, now known
as Crystal Lake. Its clear surface was covered with Loons, and _Poules
d'Eau_, a species of Rail, with which, at certain seasons, this region

The Indians have, universally, the genius of Æsop for depicting animal
life and character, and there is, among them, a fable illustrative of
every peculiarity in the personal appearance, habits, or dispositions
of each variety of the animal creation.

The back of the little Rail is very concave, or hollow. The Indians
tell us it became so in the following manner:--


There is supposed, by most of the North-western tribes, to exist an
invisible being, corresponding to the "Genius" of oriental story.
Without being exactly the father of evil, _Nan-nee-bo-zho_ is a
mischievous spirit, to whose office it seems to be assigned to punish
what is amiss. For his own purposes too, he seems constantly occupied
in entrapping and making examples of all the animals that come in his

One pleasant evening, as he walked along the banks of a lake, he saw a
flock of ducks, sailing and enjoying themselves on the blue waters. He
called to them:

"Ho! come with me into my lodge, and I will teach you to dance!" Some
of the ducks said among themselves, "It is Nan-nee-bo-zho, let us not
go." Others were of a contrary opinion, and his words being fair, and
his voice insinuating, a few turned their faces towards the land--all
the rest soon followed, and with many pleasant quackings, trooped after
him, and entered his lodge.

When there, he first took an Indian sack, with a wide mouth, which
he tied by the strings around his neck, so that it would hang over
his shoulders, having the mouth unclosed. Then placing himself in the
centre of the lodge, he ranged the ducks in a circle around him.

"Now," said he, "you must all shut your eyes _tight_, whoever opens
his eyes at all, something dreadful will happen to him. I will take my
Indian flute and play upon it, and you will, at the word I shall give,
open your eyes, and commence dancing, as you see me do."

The ducks obeyed, shutting their eyes _tight_, and keeping time to the
music by stepping from one foot to the other, all impatient for the
dancing to begin.

Presently a sound was heard like a smothered "quack," but the ducks did
not dare to open their eyes.

Again, and again, the sound of the flute would be interrupted, and a
gurgling cry of "qu-a-a-ck" be heard. There was one little duck, much
smaller than the rest, who, at this juncture, could not resist the
temptation to open one eye, cautiously. She saw Nan-nee-bo-zho, as he
played his flute, holding it with one hand, stoop a little at intervals
and seize the duck nearest him, which he throttled and stuffed into
the bag on his shoulders. So, edging a little out of the circle, and
getting nearer the door which had been left partly open to admit the
light, she cried out:

"Open your eyes--Nan-nee-bo-zho is choking you all and putting you into
his bag!"

With that she flew, but the Nan-nee-bo-zho pounced upon her. His hand
grasped her back, yet, with desperate force, she released herself and
gained the open air. Her companions flew, quacking and screaming after
her. Some escaped, and some fell victims to the sprite.

The little duck had saved her life, but she had lost her beauty. She
ever after retained the attitude she had been forced into, in her
moment of danger--her back pressed down in the centre, and her head and
neck unnaturally stretched forward into the air.



The third day of our journey rose brilliantly clear, like the two
preceding ones, and we shaped our course more to the north than we had
hitherto done, in the direction of _Big-foot_ lake, now known by the
somewhat hackneyed appellation. Lake of Geneva.

Our journey this day was without mishaps or disasters of any kind.
The air was balmy, the foliage of the forests fresh and fragrant, the
little brooks clear and sparkling--everything in nature spoke the
praises of the beneficent Creator.

It is in scenes like this, far removed from the bustle, the strife, and
the sin of civilized life, that we most fully realize the presence of
the great Author of the Universe. Here can the mind most fully adore
his majesty and goodness, for here only is the command obeyed, "Let all
the earth keep silence before Him!"

It cannot escape observation that the deepest and most solemn devotion
is in the hearts of those who, shut out from the worship of God in
temples made with hands, are led to commune with him amid the boundless
magnificence that his own power has framed.

This day was not wholly without incident. As we stopped for our
noon-tide refreshment, and dismounting threw ourselves on the fresh
herbage just at the verge of a pleasant thicket, we were startled by
a tender _bleating_ near us, and breaking its way through the low
branches, there came upon us a sweet little dappled fawn, evidently in
search of its mother. It did not seem in the least frightened at the
sight of us. As poor Selkirk might have parodied,

    It was so unacquainted with man,
    Its tameness was charming to us.

But the vociferous delight of the children soon drove it bounding again
into the woods, and all hopes of catching it for a pet were at once at
an end.

We had travelled well this day, and were beginning to feel somewhat
fatigued when, just before sunset, we came upon a ridge, overlooking
one of the loveliest little dells imaginable. It was an oak opening,
and browsing under the shade of the tall trees which were scattered
around, were the cattle and horses of the soldiers who had got thus far
on their journey. Two or three white tents were pitched in the bottom
of the valley, beside a clear stream. The camp-fires were already
lighted, and the men, singly or in groups, were dispersed at their
various preparations for their own comfort, or that of their animals.

Lieut. Foster came forward[77] with great delight to welcome our
arrival, and accepted without hesitation an invitation to join our mess
again, as long as we should be together.

We soon found a pleasant encamping-ground, far enough removed from the
other party to secure us against all inconvenience, and our supper
having received the addition of a kettle of fine fresh milk, kindly
brought us by Mrs. Gardiner, the hospital matron, who with her little
covered cart formed no unimportant feature in the military group, we
partook of our evening meal with much hilarity and enjoyment.

If people are ever companionable, it is when thrown together under
circumstances like the present. There has always been sufficient
incident through the day to furnish a theme for discourse, and subject
of merriment, as long as the company feel disposed for conversation,
which is, truth to tell, not an unconscionable length of time after
their supper is over.

The poor Lieutenant looked grave enough when we sat out in advance of
him the next morning. None of his party were acquainted with the road,
but after giving him directions both general and particular, Mr. Kinzie
promised to _blaze_ a tree, or _set up a chip_ for a guide, at every
place which appeared unusually doubtful.

We now found ourselves in a much more diversified country than any we
had hitherto travelled. Gently swelling hills, and lovely valleys,
and bright sparkling streams were the features of the landscape. But
there was little animate life. Now and then, a shout from the leader
of the party, (for, according to custom, we travelled Indian file),
would call our attention to a herd of deer "loping," as the westerners
say, through the forest; or, an additional spur would be given to the
horses on the appearance of some small dark object, far distant on the
trail before us. But the game invariably contrived to disappear before
we could reach it, and it was out of the question to leave the beaten
track for a regular hunt.

Soon after mid-day, we descended a long, sloping knoll, and by a sudden
turn came full in view of the beautiful sheet of water denominated
Gros-pied by the French, _Maunk-suck_ by the natives, and by ourselves
Big-foot, from the chief, whose village overlooked its waters. Bold,
swelling hills jutted forward into the clear blue expanse, or retreated
slightly to afford a green, level nook, as a resting-place for the
foot of man. On the nearer shore stretched a bright, gravelly beach,
through which coursed here and there a pure, sparkling rivulet to join
the larger sheet of water.

On a rising ground, at the foot of one of the bold bluffs in the middle
distance, a collection of neat wigwams formed, with their surrounding
gardens, no unpleasant feature in the picture.

A shout of delight burst involuntarily from the whole party, as this
charming landscape met our view. "It was like the Hudson, only less
bold--no, it was like the lake of the Forest Cantons, in the picture of
the Chapel of William Tell! What could be imagined more enchanting? Oh!
if our friends at the east could but enjoy it with us!"

We paused long to admire, and then spurred on, skirting the head of the
lake, and were soon ascending the broad platform, on which stood the
village of Maunk-suck, or Big-foot.

The inhabitants, who had witnessed our approach from a distance, were
all assembled in front of their wigwams to greet us, if friends--if
otherwise, whatever the occasion should demand. It was the first
time such a spectacle had ever presented itself to their wondering
eyes. Their salutations were not less cordial than we expected.
"Shaw-nee-aw-kee" and his mother, who was known throughout the tribe
by the touching appellation "Our friend's wife," were welcomed
most kindly, and an animated conversation commenced, which I could
understand only so far as it was conveyed by gestures--so I amused
myself by taking a minute survey of all that met my view.

The chief was a large, raw-boned, ugly Indian, with a countenance
bloated by intemperance, and with a sinister, unpleasant expression. He
had a gay-colored handkerchief upon his head, and was otherwise attired
in his best, in compliment to the strangers.

It was to this chief that Chambly, or as he is now called Shau-bee-nay,
Billy Caldwell and Robinson were despatched, during the Winnebago
war, in 1827, to use their earnest endeavors to prevent him and his
band from joining the hostile Indians.[78] With some difficulty they
succeeded, and were thus the means, doubtless, of saving the lives of
all the settlers who lived exposed upon the frontier.

Among the various groups of his people, there was none attracted my
attention so forcibly as a young man of handsome face, and a figure
that was striking, even where all were fine and symmetrical. He too had
a gay handkerchief on his head, a shirt of the brightest lemon-colored
calico, an abundance of silver ornaments, and, what gave his dress a
most fanciful appearance, one leggin of blue, and the other of bright
scarlet. I was not ignorant that this peculiar feature in his toilette
indicated a heart suffering from the tender passion. The flute, which
he carried in his hand, added confirmation to the fact, while the
joyous, animated expression of his countenance showed with equal
plainness that he was not a despairing lover.

I could have imagined him to have recently returned from the chase,
laden with booty, with which he had, as is the custom, entered the
lodge of the fair one, and throwing his burden at the feet of her
parents, with an indifferent, superb sort of air, as much as to say,
"Here is some meat--it is a mere trifle, but it will show you what
you might expect with me for a son-in-law." I could not doubt that
the damsel had stepped forward and gathered it up, in token that she
accepted the offering, and the donor along with it. There was nothing
in the appearance or manner of any of the maidens by whom we were
surrounded to denote which was the happy fair, neither, although I
peered anxiously into all their countenances, could I there detect
any blush of consciousness, so I was obliged to content myself with
selecting the youngest and prettiest of the group, and go on weaving my
romance to my own satisfaction.

The village stood encircled by an amphitheatre of hills, so
precipitous, and with gorges so steep and narrow, that it seemed almost
impossible to scale them, even on horseback--how then could we hope
to accomplish the ascent of the four-wheeled carriage? This was the
point now under discussion between my husband and the Pottowattamies.
There was no choice but to make the effort, selecting the pass that the
inhabitants pointed out as the most practicable. Petaille went first,
and I followed on my favorite Jerry. It was such a scramble as is not
often taken. Almost perpendicularly, through what seemed the dry bed
of a torrent, now filled with loose stones, and scarcely affording one
secure foothold from the bottom to the summit! I clung fast to the
mane, literally at times clasping Jerry around his neck, and amid the
encouraging shouts and cheers of those below, we at length arrived
safely, though nearly breathless, on the pinnacle, and sat looking
down, to view the success of the next party.

The horses had been taken from the carriage, and the luggage it
contained placed upon the shoulders of some of the young Indians, to
be _toted_ up the steep. Ropes were now attached to its sides, and a
regular bevy of our red friends, headed by our two Frenchmen, placed
to man them. Two or three more took their places in the rear, to
hold the vehicle and keep it from slipping backwards--then the labor
commenced. Such a pulling! such a shouting! such a clapping of hands
by the spectators of both sexes! such a stentorian word of command
or encouragement from the bourgeois! Now and then there would be a
slight halt, a wavering, as if carriage and men were about to tumble
backwards into the plain below--but no--they recovered themselves, and
after incredible efforts they, too, safely gained the table land above.
In process of time all were landed there, and having remunerated our
friends to their satisfaction, the goods and chattels were collected,
the wagon repacked, and we set off for our encampment at Turtle


From sketch by Mrs. Kinzie, in original edition.]

The exertions and excitement of our laborious ascent, together
with the increasing heat of the sun, made this afternoon's ride
more uncomfortable than anything we had previously felt. We were
truly rejoiced when the "whoop" of our guide, and the sight of a
few scattered lodges, gave notice that we had reached our encamping
ground. We chose a beautiful sequestered spot, by the side of a clear,
sparkling stream, and having dismounted, and seen that our horses were
made comfortable, my husband, after giving his directions to his men,
led me to a retired spot where I could lay aside my hat and mask, and
bathe my flushed face and aching head in the cool, refreshing waters.
Never had I felt anything so grateful, so delicious. I sat down, and
leaned my head against one of the tall, overshadowing trees, and was
almost dreaming, when summoned to partake of our evening meal.

The Indians had brought us, as a present, some fine brook trout, which
our Frenchmen had prepared in the most tempting fashion, and before
the bright moon rose and we were ready for our rest, all headache and
fatigue had alike disappeared.

       *       *       *       *       *

One of the most charming features of this mode of travelling is the
joyous, vocal life of the forest at early dawn, when all the feathered
tribe come forth to pay their cheerful salutations to the opening day.

The rapid, chattering flourish of the bob-o'-link, the soft whistle of
the thrush, the tender coo of the wood-dove, the deep warbling bass of
the grouse, the drumming of the partridge, the melodious trill of the
lark, the gay carol of the robin, the friendly, familiar call of the
duck and the teal, resound from tree and knoll and lowland, prompting
the expressive exclamation of the simple half-breed,

    "Voila la fort qui parle!"[AR]

[Footnote AR: How the woods talk!]

It seems as if man must involuntarily raise his voice, to take part in
the general chorus--the matin song of praise.

Birds and flowers, and the soft balmy airs of morning! Must it not have
been in a scene like this that Milton poured out his beautiful hymn of

    "These are thy glorious works, Parent of Good."

This day we were journeying in hopes to reach, at an early hour, that
broad expanse of the Rock River which here forms the Kosh-ko-nong. The
appellation of this water, rendered doubly affecting by the subsequent
fate of its people, imports "_the lake we live on_."[80]

Our road for the early part of the day led through forests so thick
and tangled, that Grignon and Lecuyer were often obliged to go in
advance as pioneers with their axes, to cut away the obstructing shrubs
and branches. It was slow work, and at times quite discouraging, but
we were through with it, at last, and then we came into a country of
altogether a different description. Low prairies, intersected with
deep, narrow streams like canals, the passage of which, either by
horses or carriage, was often a matter of delay and even difficulty.

Several times in the course of the forenoon the horses were to be taken
from the carriage and the latter pulled and pushed across the deep,
narrow channels as best it might.

The wooded banks of the Kosh-ko-nong were never welcomed with greater
delight than by us, when they at length broke upon our sight. A ride
of five or six miles through the beautiful oak openings, brought us
to _Man-eater's_ village, a collection of neat bark wigwams, with
extensive fields on each side of corn, beans, and squashes, recently
planted, but already giving promise of a fine crop. In front was the
broad blue lake, the shores of which, to the south, were open and
marshy, but near the village, and stretching far away to the north,
were bordered by fine lofty trees. The village was built but a short
distance below the point where the Rock River opens into the lake, and
during a conversation between our party and the Indians at the village,
an arrangement was made with them to take us across at a spot about
half a mile above.

After a short halt, we again took up our line of march through the
woods, along the bank of the river.

A number of the Winnebagoes (for we had been among our own people since
leaving Gros-pied Lake), set out for the appointed place by water,
paddling their canoes, of which they had selected the largest and

Arrived at the spot indicated, we dismounted, and the men commenced the
task of unsaddling and unloading. We were soon placed in the canoes,
and paddled across to the opposite bank. Next, the horses were swum
across--after them was to come the carriage. Two long wooden canoes
were securely lashed together side by side, and being of sufficient
width to admit of the carriage standing within them, the passage was
commenced. Again and again the tottering barks would sway from side to
side, and a cry or a shout would arise from our party on shore, as the
whole mass seemed about to plunge sideways into the water, but it would
presently recover itself, and at length, after various deviations from
the perpendicular, it reached the shore in safety.

We now hoped that our troubles were at an end, and that we had nothing
to do but to mount and trot on as fast as possible to Fort Winnebago.
But no. Half a mile further on was a formidable swamp, of no great
width it is true, but with a depth of from two to three feet of mud
and water. It was a question whether, with the carriage, we could get
through it at all. Several of the Indians accompanied us to this place,
partly to give us their aid and _counsel_, and partly to enjoy the fun
of the spectacle.

On reaching the swamp, we were disposed to laugh at the formidable
representations which had been made to us. We saw only a strip of what
seemed rather low land, covered with tall, dry rushes.

It is true the ground looked a little wet, but there seemed nothing
to justify all the apprehensions that had been excited. Great was my
surprise, then, to see my husband, who had been a few minutes absent,
return to our circle attired in his duck trousers, and without shoes or

"What are you going to do?" inquired I.

"Carry you through the swamp on my shoulders. Come Petaille, you are
the strongest--you are to carry Madame Kinzie, and To-shim-nuck there,
(pointing to a tall stout Winnebago), he will take Madame Helm."

"Wait a moment," said I, and seating myself on the grass, I
deliberately took off my own boots and stockings.

"What is that for?" they all asked.

"Because I do not wish to ride with wet feet all the rest of the day."

"No danger of that," said they, and no one followed my example.

By the time they were in the midst of the swamp, however, they found
my precaution was by no means useless. The water through which our
bearers had to pass was of such a depth that no efforts of the ladies
were sufficient to keep their feet above the surface; and I had the
satisfaction of feeling that my burden upon my husband's shoulders was
much less, from my being able to keep my first position instead of
changing constantly to avoid a contact with the water.

The laugh was quite on my side when I resumed my equipment and mounted,
_dry-shod_, into my saddle.

It will be perceived that journeying in the woods is, in some degree,
a deranger of ceremony and formality; that it necessarily restricts
us somewhat in our conventionalities. The only remedy is, to make
ourselves amends by a double share when we return to the civilized
walks of life.

By dint of much pulling, shouting, encouraging and threatening, the
horses at length dragged the carriage through the difficult pass, and
our red friends were left to return to their village, with, doubtless,
a very exaggerated and amusing account of all that they had seen and
assisted in.

We had not forgotten our promise to Lieut. Foster to put up a
"guide-board" of some sort, for his accommodation in following us. We
had therefore, upon several occasions, carried with us from the woods
a few pieces, of three or four feet in length, which we had planted at
certain points, with a transverse stick through a cleft in the top,
thus marking the direction he and his party were to take.

We therefore felt sure that, although a few days later, he would
probably find our trail, and avail himself of the same assistance as we
had, in getting through the difficulties of the way.

Our encamping ground, this night, was to be not far distant from the
Four Lakes.[81] We were greatly fatigued with the heat and exercise of
the day, and most anxiously did we look out for the clumps of willows
and alders, which were to mark the spot were the water would be found.
We felt hardly equal to pushing on quite to the bank of the nearest
lake. Indeed, it would have taken us too much off our direct course.

When we, at a late hour, came upon a spot fit for our purpose, we
exchanged mutual congratulations that this was to be our last night
upon the road. The next day we should be at Winnebago!

Our journey had been most delightful--a continued scene of exhilaration
and enjoyment; for the various mishaps, although for the moment they
had perplexed, had, in the end, but added to our amusement. Still,
with the inconstancy of human nature, we were pleased to exchange its
excitement for the quiet repose of home.

Our next morning's ride was of a more tranquil character than any that
had preceded it; for at an early hour we entered upon what was known as
the "Twenty-mile Prairie," although it is, in fact, said to be no more
than sixteen or eighteen miles. I can only observe, that if this is the
case, the miles are wonderfully long on the prairies. Our passage over
this was, except the absence of the sand, like crossing the desert.
Mile after mile of unbroken expanse--not a tree--not a living object
except ourselves.

The sun, as if to make himself amends for his two months' seclusion,
shone forth with redoubled brilliancy. There is no such thing as
carrying an umbrella on horseback, though those in the wagon were able
to avail themselves of such a shelter.

Our mother's energies had sustained her in the saddle until this day,
but she was now fairly obliged to give in, and yield her place on
little Brunêt to Sister Margaret.

Thus we went on, one little knoll rising beyond another, from the
summit of each of which, in succession, we hoped to descry the distant
woods, which were to us as the promised land.

"Take courage," were the cheering words, often repeated, "very soon you
will begin to see the timber."

Another hour would pass heavily by.

"Now, when we reach the rising ground just ahead, look _sharp_."

We looked sharp--nothing but the same unvarying landscape.

There were not even streams to allay the feverish thirst occasioned by
fatigue and impatience.

At length a whoop from Shaw-nee-aw-kee broke the silence in which we
were pursuing our way.

"Le voila!" ("There it is!")

Our less practised eye could not at first discern the faint blue strip
edging the horizon, but it grew and grew upon our vision, and all
fatigue and discomfort proportionably disappeared.

We were in fine spirits by the time we reached "Hastings' Woods," a
noble forest, watered by a clear, sparkling stream.

Grateful as was the refreshment of the green foliage and the cooling
waters, we did not allow ourselves to forget that the day was wearing
on, and that we must, if possible, complete our journey before sunset,
so we soon braced up our minds to continue our route, although we would
gladly have lingered another hour.

The marsh of Duck Creek was, thanks to the heat of the past week, in a
very different state from what it had been a few months previous, when
I had been so unfortunately submerged in its icy waters.

We passed it without difficulty, and soon found ourselves upon the
banks of the creek.

The stream, at this point, was supposed to be always fordable; and even
were it not so, that to the majority of our party would have been a
matter of little moment. To the ladies, however, the subject seemed to
demand consideration.

"This water looks very deep--are you sure we can cross it on horseback?"

"Oh, yes! Petaille, go before and let us see how the water is."

Petaille obeyed. He was mounted on a horse like a giraffe, and,
extending his feet horizontally, he certainly managed to pass through
the stream without much of a wetting.

It seemed certain that the water would come into the wagon, but that
was of the less consequence, as in case of the worst, the passengers
could mount upon the seats.

My horse, Jerry, was above the medium height, so that I soon passed
over, with no inconvenience but that of being obliged to disengage my
feet from the stirrups, and tuck them up snugly against the mane of the

Sister Margaret was still upon Brunêt. She was advised to change him
for one of the taller horses, but while the matter was under debate,
it was settled by the perverse little wretch taking to the water most
unceremoniously, in obedience to the example of the other animals.

He was soon beyond his depth, and we were at once alarmed and diverted
at seeing his rider, with surprising adroitness, draw herself from the
stirrups, and perch herself upon the top of the saddle, where she held
her position, and navigated her little refractory steed safely to land.

This was the last of our adventures. A pleasant ride of four miles
brought us to the Fort, just as the sun was throwing his last beams
over the glowing landscape; and on reaching the ferry, we were at once
conducted, by the friends who were awaiting us, to the hospitable roof
of Major Twiggs.[82]



The companies of the first regiment which had hitherto been stationed
at Fort Winnebago,[83] had received orders to move on to the
Mississippi as soon as relieved by a portion of the fifth, now at Fort

As many of the officers of the latter regiment were married, we had
reason to expect that all the quarters at the post would be put in
requisition. For this reason, although strongly pressed by Major Twiggs
to take up our residence again in the Fort, until he should go on
furlough, we thought it best to establish ourselves at once at "the

It seemed laughable to give so grand a name to so very insignificant
a concern. We had been promised, by the heads of department at
Washington, a comfortable dwelling so soon as there should be an
appropriation by Congress sufficient to cover any extra expense in the
Indian Department. It was evident that Congress had a great spite at
us, for it had delayed for two sessions attending to our accommodation.
There was nothing to be done, therefore, but to make ourselves
comfortable with the best means in our power.

Major Twiggs had given Mr. Kinzie the old log barracks, which had been
built for the officers and soldiers on the first establishment of the
post, two years previous, and his Frenchmen had removed and put them up
again upon the little hill opposite the Fort. To these some additions
were now made in the shape of a dairy, stables, smoke-house, etc.,
constructed of the tamarack logs brought from the neighboring swamp.
The whole presented a very rough and primitive appearance.

The main building consisted of a succession of four rooms, no two of
which communicated with each other, but each opened by a door into the
outward air. A small window cut through the logs in front and rear,
gave light to the apartment. An immense clay chimney for every two
rooms, occupied one side of each, and the ceiling overhead was composed
of a few rough boards laid upon the transverse logs that supported the

It was surprising how soon a comfortable, homelike air was given
to the old dilapidated rooms, by a few Indian mats spread upon the
floor, the piano and other furniture ranged in their appropriate
places, and even a few pictures hung against the logs. The latter,
alas! had soon to be displaced, for with the first heavy shower the
rain found entrance through sundry crevices, and we saw ourselves
obliged to put aside, carefully, everything that could be injured by
the moisture. We made light of these evils, however--packed away our
carpets and superfluous furniture upon the boards above, which we
dignified with the name of attic, and contentedly resolved to await the
time when Government should condescend to remember us. The greatest
inconvenience I experienced, was from the necessity of wearing my straw
bonnet throughout the day, as I journeyed from bedroom to parlor, and
from parlor to kitchen. I became so accustomed to it, that I even
sometimes forgot to remove it when I sat down to table, or to my quiet
occupations with my mother and sister.

Permission was however, in time, received to build a house for the
blacksmith--that is, the person kept in pay by the Government at this
station to mend the guns, traps, &c. of the Indians.

It happened most fortunately for us that Monsieur Isidore Morrin was
a bachelor, and quite satisfied to continue boarding with his friend
Louis Frum, dit Manaigre, so that when the new house was fairly
commenced, we planned it and hurried it forward entirely on our own

It was not very magnificent, it is true, consisting of but a parlor
and two bedrooms on the ground-floor, and two low chambers under the
roof, with a kitchen in the rear; but compared with the rambling old
stable-like building we now inhabited, it seemed quite a palace.

Before it was completed, Mr. Kinzie was notified that the money for
the annual Indian payment was awaiting his arrival in Detroit to take
charge of it, and superintend its transportation to the Portage, and he
was obliged to set off at once to fulfil this part of his duty.

The workmen who had been brought from the Mississippi to erect the
main building, were fully competent to carry on their work without an
overseer, but the kitchen was to be the task of the Frenchmen, and
the question was, how could it be executed in the absence of _the

"You will have to content yourselves in the old quarters until my
return," said my husband, "and then we will soon have things in
order." It was to be a long and tedious journey, for the operations of
Government were not carried on by railroad and telegraph in those days.

After his departure I said to the men, "Come, you have all your logs
cut and hauled--the squaws have brought the bark for the roof--what is
to prevent our finishing the house and getting all moved and settled
to surprise Monsieur John on his return?"

"Ah! to be sure, Madame John," said Plante, who was always the
spokesman, "provided the one who plants a green bough on the
chimney-top is to have a treat!"

"Certainly. All hands fall to work, and see who will win the treat."

Upon the strength of such an inducement to the one who should put the
finishing stroke to the building, Plante, Pillon and Manaigre, whom
the waggish Plante persisted in calling "mon nègre," whenever he felt
himself out of the reach of the other's arm, all went vigorously to

Building a log-house is a somewhat curious process. First, as will
be conceived, the logs are laid one upon another and joined at the
corners, until the walls have reached the required height. The chimney
is formed by four poles of the proper length, interlaced with a
wicker-work of small branches. A hole or pit is dug, near at hand, and
with a mixture of clay and water, a sort of mortar is formed. Large
wisps of hay are filled with this thick substance, and fashioned with
the hands into what are technically called "_clay cats_," and then are
filled in among the framework of the chimney until not a chink is left.
The whole is then covered with a smooth coating of the wet clay, which
is denominated, "plastering."

Between the logs which compose the walls of the building, small bits of
wood are driven, quite near together; this is called "chinking," and
after it is done, clay cats are introduced, and smoothed over with the
plaster. When all is dry, both walls and chimney are white-washed, and
present a comfortable and tidy appearance.

The roof is formed by laying upon the transverse logs, thick sheets of
bark, and around the chimney, for greater security against the rain, we
took care to have placed a few layers of the palisades that had been
left, when Mr. Peach, an odd little itinerant genius, had fenced in our
garden, the pride and wonder of the surrounding settlement and wigwams.

While all these matters were in progress, we received frequent visits
from our Indian friends. First and foremost among them was "the young
Dandy," Four-Legs.

One fine morning he made his appearance accompanied by two squaws,
whom he introduced as his wives. He could speak a little Chippewa, and
by this means he and our mother contrived to keep up something of a
conversation. He was dressed in all his finery, brooches, wampum, fan,
looking-glass and all. The paint upon his face and chest showed that he
had devoted no small time to the labors of his toilet.

He took a chair, as he had seen done at Washington, and made signs to
his women to sit down upon the floor.

The custom of taking two wives is not very general among the Indians.
They seem to have the sagacity to perceive that the fewer they have to
manage, the more complete is the peace and quiet of the wigwam.

Nevertheless, it sometimes happens that a husband takes a foolish
fancy for a second squaw, and in that case he uses all his cunning
and eloquence to reconcile the first to receiving a new inmate in the
lodge. Of course it is a matter that must be managed adroitly, in order
that harmony may be preserved.

"My dear, your health is not very good, it is time you should have some
rest. You have worked very hard, and it grieves me that you should have
to labor any longer. Let me get you some nice young squaw to wait upon
you, that you may live at ease all the rest of your life."

The first wife consents--indeed, she has no option. If she is of a
jealous, vindictive disposition, what a life the new-comer leads!
The old one maintains all her rights of dowager and duenna, and the
husband's tenderness is hardly a compensation for all the evils the
young rival is made to suffer.

It was on Sunday morning that this visit of the Dandy was made to us.
We were all seated quietly, engaged in reading. Four-Legs inquired of
my mother, why we were so occupied, and why everything around us was so

My mother explained to him our observance of the day of rest--that
we devoted it to worshipping and serving the Great Spirit, as he had
commanded in his Holy Word.

Four-Legs gave a nod of approbation. That was very right, he said--he
was glad to see us doing our duty--he was very religious himself, and
he liked to see others so. He always took care that his squaws attended
to their duty, not reading perhaps, but such as the Great Spirit liked,
and such as he thought proper and becoming.

He seemed to have no fancy for listening to any explanation of our
points of difference. The impression among the Winnebagoes "that if the
Great Spirit had wished them different from what they are, he would
have made them so," seems too strong to yield to either argument or

Sometimes those who are desirous of appearing somewhat civilized will
listen quietly to all that is advanced on the subject of Christianity,
and coolly saying, "Yes, we believe that, too," will change the
conversation to other subjects.

As a general thing, they do not appear to perceive that there is
anything to be gained, by adopting the religion and the customs of the
whites. "Look at them," they say, "always toiling and striving--always
wearing a brow of care--shut up in houses--afraid of the wind and the
rain--suffering when they are deprived of the comforts of life! We,
on the contrary, live a life of freedom and happiness. We hunt and
fish, and pass our time pleasantly in the open woods and prairies. If
we are hungry, we take some game; or, if we do not find that, we can
go without. If our enemies trouble us, we can kill them, and there is
no more said about it. What should we gain by changing ourselves into
white men?"[AS]

[Footnote AS: It will be remembered that these were the arguments used
a quarter of a century ago, when the Indians possessed most of the
broad lands on the Upper Mississippi and its tributaries.]

I have never heard that Christian missionaries, with all their efforts
to convert them, have made much progress in enlightening their minds
upon the doctrines of the Gospel. Mr. Mazzuchelli, a Roman Catholic
priest, accompanied by Miss Elizabeth Grignon as interpreter, made a
missionary visit to the Portage during our residence there, and, after
some instruction to them, about forty consented to be baptized.[84]
Christian names were given to them with which they seemed much pleased;
and not less so, with the little plated crucifixes which each received,
and which the women wore about their necks. These they seemed to regard
with a devotional feeling; but I was not sufficiently acquainted with
their language to gather from them whether they understood the doctrine
the symbol was designed to convey. Certain it is, they expressed no
wish to learn our language, in order that they might gain a fuller
knowledge of the Saviour, nor any solicitude to be taught more about
him than they had received during the missionary's short visit.

One woman, to whom the name of Charlotte had been given, signified a
desire to learn the domestic ways of the whites, and asked of me as
a favor through Madame Paquette that she might be permitted to come
on "washing-day," and learn of my servants our way of managing the
business. A tub was given her, and my woman instructed her, by signs
and example, how she was to manage. As I was not a little curious to
observe how tilings went on, I proceeded after a time to the kitchen
where they all were. Charlotte was at her tub, scouring and rubbing
with all her might at her little crucifix. Two other squaws sat upon
the floor near her, watching the operation.

"That is the work she has been at for the last half hour," said
Josette, in a tone of great impatience. "_She'll_ never learn to wash."

Charlotte, however, soon fell diligently to work, and really seemed as
if she would tear her arms off, with her violent exertions.

After a time, supposing that she must feel a good deal fatigued and
exhausted with unaccustomed labor, I did what it was at that day
very much the fashion to do,--what, at home, I had always seen done
on washing-day,--what, in short, I imagine was then a general custom
among housekeepers. I went to the dining-room closet, intending to give
Charlotte a glass of wine or brandy and water. My "cupboard" proved to
be in the state of the luckless Mother Hubbard's--nothing of the kind
could I find but a bottle of orange shrub.

Of this I poured out a wine-glass full, and, carrying it out, offered
it to the woman. She took it with an expression of great pleasure;
but, in carrying it to her lips, she stopped short, and exclaiming
"Whiskee!" immediately returned it to me. I would still have pressed it
upon her; for, in my inexperience, I really believed it was a cordial
she needed; but, pointing to her crucifix, she shook her head and
returned to her work.

I received this as a lesson more powerful than twenty sermons. It was
the first time in my life that I had ever seen spirituous liquors
rejected upon a religious principle, and it made an impression upon me
that I never forgot.



Among the women of the tribe with whom we early became acquainted, our
greatest favorite was a daughter of one of the Day-kau-rays.[85] This
family, as I have elsewhere said, boasted in some remote generation
a cross of the French blood, and this fact may account for the fair
complexion and soft curling hair which distinguished our friend. She
had a noble forehead, full expressive eyes, and fine teeth. Unlike the
women of her people, she had not grown brown and haggard with advancing
years. Indeed, with the exception of one feature, she might be called

She had many years before married a Mus-qua-kee, or Fox Indian, and,
according to the custom among all the tribes, the husband came home to
the wife's family, and lived among the Winnebagoes.

It is this custom, so exactly the reverse of civilized ways, that makes
the birth of a daughter a subject of peculiar rejoicing in an Indian
family. "She will bring another hunter to our lodge," is the style of
mutual congratulation.

The Mus-qua-kee continued, for some few years, to live among his wife's
relations; but, as no children blessed their union, he at length became
tired of his new friends, and longed to return to his own people.
He tried, for a time, to persuade his wife to leave her home, and
accompany him to the Mississippi, where the Sacs and Foxes live, but
in vain. She could not resolve to make the sacrifice.

One day, after many fruitless efforts to persuade her, he flew into a
violent passion.

"Then, if you will not go with me," said he, "I will leave you; but you
shall never be the wife of any other man--I will mark you!"

Saying this, he flew upon her, and bit off the end of her nose. This,
the usual punishment for conjugal infidelity, is the greatest disgrace
a woman can receive--it bars her forever from again entering the pale
of matrimony. The wretch fled to his own people; but his revenge fell
short of its aim. Day-kau-ray was too well known and too universally
respected to suffer opprobium in any member of his family. This
bright, loving creature in particular, won all hearts upon a first
acquaintance--she certainly did ours from the outset.

She suffered much from rheumatism, and a remedy we gave her soon
afforded her almost entire relief. Her gratitude knew no bounds.
Notwithstanding, that from long suffering she had become partially
crippled, she would walk all the way from the Barribault, a distance of
ten miles, as often as once in two or three weeks, to visit us. Then,
to sit and gaze at us, to laugh with childish glee at everything new or
strange that we employed ourselves about--to pat and stroke us every
time we came near her--sometimes to raise our hand or arms and kiss
them--these were her demonstrations of affection. And we loved her in
return. It was always a joyful announcement when, looking out over the
Portage road, somebody called out, "the _Cut-nose_ is coming!" In time,
however, we learned to call her by her baptismal name of Elizabeth, for
she, too, was one of Mr. Mazzuchelli's converts.

She came one day, accompanied by a half-grown boy, carrying a young
fawn, she had brought me as a present. I was delighted with the pretty
creature--with its soft eyes and dappled coat; but having often heard
the simile, "as wild as a fawn," I did not anticipate much success in
taming it. To my great surprise, it soon learned to follow me like
a dog. Wherever I went, there Fan was sure to be. At breakfast, she
would lie down at my feet, under the table. One of her first tokens of
affection was to gnaw off all the trimming from my black silk apron, as
she lay pretending to caress and fondle me. Nor was this her only style
of mischief.

One day we heard a great rattling among the crockery in the kitchen.
We ran to see what was the matter, and found that Miss Fan had made
her way to a shelf of the dresser, about two feet from the ground, and
was endeavoring to find a comfortable place to lie down, among the
plates and dishes. I soon observed that it was the shelter of the shelf
above her head that was the great attraction, and that she was in the
habit of seeking out a place of repose under a chair, or something
approaching to an "umbrageous bower." So after this I took care, as the
hour for her morning nap approached, to open a large green parasol, and
set it on the matting in the corner--then when I called Fan, Fan, she
would come and nestle under it, and soon fall fast asleep.

One morning Fan was missing. In vain we called and sought her in
the garden--in the enclosure for the cattle--at the houses of the
Frenchmen--along the hill towards Paquette's--no Fan was to be found.
We thought she had asserted her own wild nature and sped away to the

It was a hot forenoon, and the doors were all open. About dinner
time, in rushed Fan, panting violently, and threw herself upon her
side, where she lay with her feet outstretched, her mouth foaming, and
exhibiting all the signs of mortal agony. We tried to give her water,
to soothe her, if perhaps it might be fright that so affected her;
but in a few minutes, with a gasp and a spasm, she breathed her last.
Whether she had been chased by the greyhounds, or whether she had eaten
some poisonous weed, which, occasioning her suffering, had driven her
to her best friends for aid, we never knew; but we lost our pretty pet,
and many were the tears shed for her.

       *       *       *       *       *

Very shortly after the departure of my husband, we received a visit
from "the White Crow," "the Little Priest," and several others of
the principal chiefs of the Rock River Indians. They seemed greatly
disappointed at learning that their father was from home, even though
his errand was to get "the silver." We sent for Paquette,[86] who
interpreted for us the object of their visit.

They had come to inform us that the Sac Chief, Black Hawk and his band,
who, in compliance with a former treaty, had removed sometime previous
to the west of the Mississippi, had now returned to their old homes and
hunting grounds, and expressed a determination not to relinquish them,
but to drive off the white settlers who had begun to occupy them.

The latter, in fact, he had already done, and having, as it was said,
induced some of the Pottowattamies to join him, there was reason to
fear that he might persuade some of the Winnebagoes to follow their

These chiefs had come to counsel with their father, and to assure him
that they should do all in their power to keep their young men quiet.
They had heard that troops were being raised down among the whites in
Illinois, and they had hopes that their people would be wise enough to
keep out of difficulty. Furthermore, they begged that their father, on
his return, would see that the soldiers did not meddle with them, so
long as they remained quiet and behaved in a friendly manner.

White Crow seemed particularly anxious to impress it upon me, that
if any danger should arise in Shawnee-aw-kee's absence, he should
come with his people to protect me and my family. I relied upon his
assurances, for he had ever shown himself an upright and honorable

Notwithstanding this, the thoughts of "Indian troubles" so near us,
in the absence of our guardian and protector, occasioned us many an
anxious moment, and it was not until we learned of the peaceable
retreat of the Sacs and Foxes, west of the Mississippi, that we were
able wholly to lay aside our fears.[87]

We were now called to part with our friends. Major Twiggs and his
family, which we did with heartfelt regret. He gave me a few parting
words about our old acquaintance, Christman.

"When I went into the barracks the other day," said he, "about the time
the men were taking their dinner, I noticed a great six-foot soldier
standing against the window-frame, crying and blubbering. 'Halloo,'
said I, 'what on earth does this mean?'

"'Why, that fellow there,' said Christman, (for it was he), 'has
scrowged me out of my place!' A pretty soldier your protege will make,

I never heard any more of my hero. Whether he went to exhibit his
prowess against the Seminoles and Mexicans, or whether he returned
to till the fertile soil of his native German Flats, and blow his
favorite boatman's horn, must be left for some future historian to tell.

There is one more character to be disposed of--Louisa. An opportunity
offering in the Spring, the Major had placed her under the charge of a
person going to Buffalo, that she might be returned to her parents. In
compliment to the new acquaintances she had formed, she shortened her
skirts, mounted a pair of scarlet leggins, embroidered with porcupine
quills, and took her leave of military life, having deposited with the
gentleman who took charge of her, sixty dollars, for safe keeping,
which she remarked "she had _saved up_, out of her wages at a dollar a
week through the winter."

       *       *       *       *       *

A very short time after we were settled in our new home at the Agency,
we attempted the commencement of a little Sunday School. Edwin, Harry
and Josette, were our most reliable scholars, but besides them, there
were the two little Manaigres, Therese Paquette, and her mother's half
sister, Florence Courville, a pretty young girl of fifteen. None of
these girls had even learned their letters. They spoke only French, or
rather, the Canadian _patois_,[88] and it was exceedingly difficult
to give them at once the sound of the words, and their signification,
which they were careful to inquire. Besides this, there was the
task of correcting the false ideas, and remedying the ignorance and
superstition which presented so formidable an obstacle to rational
improvement. We did our best, however, and had the satisfaction of
seeing them, after a time, making really respectable progress with
their spelling-book, and what was still more encouraging, acquiring a
degree of light and knowledge in regard to better things.

In process of time, however, Florence was often absent from her class.
"Her sister," she said, "could not always spare her. She wanted her
to keep house while she, herself, went over on Sunday to visit her
friends, the Roys, who lived on the Wisconsin."

We reasoned with Madam Paquette on the subject. "Could she not spare
Florence on some hour of the day? We would gladly teach her on a week
day, for she seemed anxious to learn, but we had always been told that
for that there was no time."

"Well--she would see. Madame Allum (Helm) and Madame John, were so

There was no improvement, however, in regularity. After a time Manaigre
was induced to send his children to Mr. Cadle's mission-school at Green
Bay.[89] Therese accompanied them, and very soon Florence discontinued
her attendance altogether.

We were obliged, from that time forward, to confine our instructions to
our own domestic circle.



Before we had any right to look for my husband's return, I one day
received a message inviting me to come up to the new house. We all went
in a body, for we had purposely staid away a few days, expecting this
summons, of which we anticipated the meaning.

Plante, in full glee, was seated astride of a small keg on the roof,
close beside the kitchen chimney, on the very summit of which he had
planted a green bough. To this he held fast with one hand, while he
exultingly waved the other and called out,

"_Eh! ban, Madame John! à cette heure, pour le rigal!_"

"Yes, Plante, you are entitled to a treat, and I hope you will not
enjoy it the less that Pillon and Manaigre are to share it with you."

A suitable gratification made them quite contented with their
"_bourgeoise_," against whom Plante had sometimes been inclined to
grumble, "because," as he said, "she had him called up too early in the
morning." He might have added, because, too, she could not understand
the philosophy of his coming in to work in his own garden, under the
plea that it was too wet and rainy to work in Monsieur John's.

It was with no ordinary feelings of satisfaction, that we quitted the
old log tenement for our new dwelling, small and insignificant though
it was.

I was only too happy to enjoy the luxury of a real bed-chamber, in
place of the parlor floor which I had occupied as such for more than
two months. It is true that our culinary arrangements were still upon
no improved plan. The clay chimney was not of sufficient strength to
hold the trammel and pot-hooks, which, at that day had not been quite
superseded by the cooking-stove and kitchen-range. Our fire was made
as in the olden time, with vast logs behind, and smaller sticks in
front, laid across upon the andirons or _dogs_. Upon the sticks were
placed such of the cooking-utensils as could not be accommodated on the
hearth, but woe to the dinner or the supper, if through a little want
of care or scrutiny one treacherous piece was suffered to burn away.
Down would come the whole arrangement--kettles, saucepans, burning
brands, and cinders, in one almost inextricable mass. How often this
happened under the supervision of Harry or little Josette, while the
mistress was playing lady to some visitor in the parlor, "'twere vain
to tell."

Then, spite of Mons. Plante's palisades round the chimney, in a hard
shower the rain would come pelting down, and, the hearth unfortunately
sloping a little the wrong way, the fire would become extinguished;
while the bark on the roof, failing to do its duty, we were now and
then so completely deluged, that there was no resource but to catch
up the breakfast or dinner and tuck it under the table until better
times--that is, till fair weather came again. In spite of all these
little adverse occurrences, however, we enjoyed our new quarters

Our garden was well furnished with vegetables, and even the currant
bushes which we had brought from Chicago with us, tied in a bundle at
the back of the carriage, had produced us some fruit.

The Indian women were very constant in their visits and their presents.
Sometimes it was venison--sometimes ducks or pigeons--whortleberries,
wild plums, or cranberries, according to the season--neat pretty mats
for the floor or table--wooden bowls or ladles, fancy work of deer-skin
or porcupine quills. These they would bring in and throw at my feet.
If through inattention I failed to look pleased, to raise the articles
from the floor and lay them carefully aside, a look of mortification
and the observation, "Our mother hates our gifts," showed how much
their feelings were wounded. It was always expected that a present
would be received graciously, and returned with something twice its

Meantime, week after week wore on, and still was the return of "the
master" delayed.

The rare arrival of a schooner at Green Bay, in which to take passage
for Detroit, made it always a matter of uncertainty what length of time
would be necessary for a journey there and back again--so that it was
not until the last of August that he again reached his home. Great was
his surprise to find us so nicely "moved and settled," and under his
active supervision, the evils of which we had to complain were soon

My husband had met at Fort Gratiot, and brought with him, my young
brother, Julian, whom my parents were sending, at our request, to
reside with us. Edwin was overjoyed to have a companion once more, for
he had hitherto been very solitary. They soon had enough to occupy
their attention, for, in obedience to a summons sent to the different
villages, the Indians very shortly came flocking in to the payment.

There was among their number this year, one whom I had never seen
before--the mother of the elder Day-kau-ray. No one could tell her
age, but all agreed that she must have seen upwards of a hundred
winters. Her eyes dimmed, and almost white with age--her face dark and
withered, like a baked apple--her voice tremulous and feeble, except
when raised in fury to reprove her graceless grandsons, who were fond
of playing her all sorts of mischievous tricks, indicated the very
great age she must have attained.

She usually went upon all fours, not having strength to hold herself
erect. On the day of the payment, having received her portion, which
she carefully hid in the corner of her blanket, she came crawling along
and seated herself on the door-step, to count her treasure.

My sister and I were watching her movements from the open window.

Presently, just as she had, unobserved as she thought, spread out her
silver before her, two of her descendants came suddenly upon her. At
first they seemed begging for a share, but she repulsed them with angry
gestures, when one of them made a sudden swoop, and possessed himself
of a tolerable handful.

She tried to rise, to pursue him, but was unable to do more than clutch
the remainder, and utter the most unearthly screams of rage. At this
instant the boys raised their eyes and perceived us regarding them.
They burst into a laugh, and with a sort of mocking gesture they threw
her the half-dollars, and ran back to the pay-ground.

I think there was but little earnest in their vexatious tricks, for she
seemed very fond of them, and never failed to beg something of "her
father," that she could bestow upon them.

She crept into the parlor one morning, when straightening herself up,
and supporting herself by the frame of the door, she cried in a most
piteous tone--"Shaw-nee-aw-kee! Wau-tshob-ee-rah Thsoonsh-koo-nee-noh!"
(Silverman, I have no looking-glass.) Her "father" smiling and taking
up the same little tone, cried in return,

"Do you wish to look at yourself, Mother?"

The idea seemed to her so irresistibly comic, that she laughed until
she was fairly obliged to seat herself upon the floor and give way to
the enjoyment. She then owned that it was for one of her boys that she
wanted the little mirror. When her father had given it to her, she
found that she had "no comb," then that she had "no knife," then that
she had "no calico shawl," until it ended, as it generally did, by
Shaw-nee-aw-kee paying pretty dearly for his joke.

       *       *       *       *       *

When the Indians arrived and when they departed, my sense of "woman's
rights" was often greatly outraged. The master of the family, as a
general thing, came leisurely bearing his gun and perhaps a lance in
his hand. The woman, with the mats and poles of her lodge upon her
shoulders, her pappoose, if she had one, her kettles, sacks of corn and
wild rice, and not unfrequently, the household dog perched on the top
of all. If there is a horse or pony in the list of family possessions,
the man rides, the squaw trudges after.

This unequal division of labor is the result of no want of kind,
affectionate feeling on the part of the husband. It is rather the
instinct of the sex to assert their superiority of position and
importance, when a proper occasion offers. When out of the reach of
observation, and in no danger of compromising his own dignity, the
husband is willing enough to relieve his spouse from the burden that
custom imposes on her, by sharing her labors and hardships.[90]

The payment had not passed without its appropriate number of
complimentary and medicine dances. The latter take place only at rare
intervals--the former whenever an occasion presents itself--demanding a
manifestation of respect and courtesy.

It is the custom to ask permission of the person to be complimented, to
dance for him. This granted, preparation is made by painting the face
elaborately, and marking the person, which is usually bare about the
chest and shoulders, after the most approved pattern. All the ornaments
that can be mustered, are added to the hair, or head dress. Happy is
he, who, in virtue of having taken one or more scalps, is entitled to
proclaim it by a corresponding number of eagle's feathers. The less
fortunate make a substitute of the feathers of the wild turkey, or,
better still, of the first unlucky "rooster" that falls in their way.
My poor fowls, during the time of payment, were always thoroughly

When their preparations are completed, the dancers assemble at some
convenient place, and then come marching to the spot appointed,
accompanied by the music of the Indian drum and shee-shee-qua or
rattle. They range themselves in a circle and dance with violent
contortions and gesticulations, some of them graceful, others only
energetical, the squaws, who stand a little apart, and mingle
their discordant voices with the music of the instruments, rarely
participating in the dance. Occasionally, however, when excited by the
general gaiety, a few of them will form a circle outside and perform a
sort of ungraceful, up and down movement, which has no merit, save the
perfect time which is kept, and for which, the Indians seem, without
exception, to possess a natural ear.

The dance finished, which is only when the strength of the dancers is
quite exhausted, a quantity of presents are brought and placed in the
middle of the circle, by order of the party complimented. An equitable
distribution is made, by one of their number; and the object of all
this display having been accomplished, they retire.

The medicine-dance is carried on chiefly to celebrate the skill of
the "Medicine-man," in curing diseases. This functionary belongs to a
fraternity who are supposed to add to their other powers some skill
in interpreting the will of the Great Spirit in regard to the conduct
of his people. He occasionally makes offerings and sacrifices which
are regarded as propitiatory. In this sense, the term "priest" may be
deemed applicable to him. He is also a "prophet" in so far as he is, in
a limited degree, an instructor, but does not claim to possess the gift
of foretelling future events.

A person is selected to join the fraternity of the "Medicine-man" by
those already initiated, chiefly on account of some skill or sagacity
that has been observed in him. Sometimes it happens that a person who
has had a severe illness which has yielded to the prescriptions of one
of the members, is considered a proper object of choice from a sort of
claim thus established.

When he is about to be initiated, a great feast is made, of course at
the expense of the candidate, for in the most simple, as in the most
civilized life, the same principle of politics holds good, "honors must
be paid for." An animal is killed and dressed, of which the people at
large partake--there are dances and songs and speeches in abundance.
Then the chief Medicine-man takes the candidate and privately
instructs him in all the ceremonies and knowledge necessary to make
him an accomplished member of the fraternity. Sometimes the new member
selected is still a child. In that case he is taken by the Medicine-man
so soon as he reaches a proper age, and qualified by instruction and
example to become a creditable member of the fraternity.

Among the Winnebagoes, there seems a considerable belief in magic. Each
Medicine-man has a bag or sack, in which is supposed to be enclosed
some animal, to whom in the course of their _pow-wows_, he addresses
himself, crying to him in the note common to his imagined species. And
the people seem to be persuaded that the answers which are announced
are really communications in this form, from the Great Spirit.

The Indians appear to have no idea of a retribution beyond this life.
They have a strong appreciation of the great, fundamental virtues of
natural religion--the worship of the Great Spirit, brotherly love,
parental affection, honesty, temperance and chastity. Any infringement
of the laws of the Great Spirit, by a departure from these virtues,
they believe will excite his anger, and draw down punishment. These
are their principles. That their practice evinces more and more, a
departure from them, under the debasing influences of a proximity to
the whites, is a melancholy truth, which no one will admit with so much
sorrow as those who lived among them, and esteemed them, a quarter of a
century ago, before this signal change had taken place.

       *       *       *       *       *

One of the first improvements that suggested itself about our new
dwelling, had been the removal of some very unsightly pickets
surrounding two or three Indian graves, on the esplanade in front of
the house. Such, however, is the reverence in which these burial-places
are held, that we felt we must approach the subject with great delicacy
and consideration.

My husband at length ventured to propose to Mrs. "Pawnee Blanc," the
nearest surviving relative of the person interred, to replace the
pickets with a neat wooden platform.

The idea pleased her much, for through her intimacy in Paquette's
family, she had acquired something of a taste for civilization.
Accordingly a little structure about a foot in height, properly
finished with a moulding around the edge, was substituted for the worn
and blackened pickets, and it was touching to witness the mournful
satisfaction with which two or three old crones would come regularly
every evening at sunset, to sit and gossip over the ashes of their
departed relatives.

On the fine, moonlight nights too, there might often be seen a group
sitting there, and enjoying what is to them a solemn hour, for they
entertain the poetic belief that "the moon was made to give light to
the dead."

The reverence of the Indians for the memory of their departed friends,
and their dutiful attention in visiting and making offerings to the
Great Spirit, over their last resting-places, is an example worthy of
imitation among their more enlightened brethren. Not so, however, with
some of their customs in relation to the dead.

The news of the decease of one of their number is a signal for a
general mourning and lamentation--it is also, in some instances, I am
sorry to say, when the means and appliances can be found, the apology
for a general carouse.

The relatives weep and howl for grief--the friends and acquaintances
bear them company through sympathy. A few of their number are deputed
to wait upon their "father," to inform him of the event, and to beg
some presents "to help them," as they express it, "dry up their tears."

We received such a visit one morning, not long after the payment was

A little drunken Indian, named by the French people around, "Old
Boilvin," from his resemblance to an Indian Agent of that name,[91]
at Prairie du Chien, was the person on account of whose death the
application was made. "He had been fishing," they said, "on the shores
of one of the little lakes near the Portage, and having taken a little
too much '_whiskee_,' had fallen into the water and been drowned."
Nothing of him had been found but his blanket on the bank, so there
could be no funeral ceremonies, but they were prepared to make a great
lamentation about him.

Their father presented them with tobacco, knives, calico and
looking-glasses, in proportion to what he thought might be their
reasonable grief at the loss of such a worthless vagabond, and they

There was no difficulty, notwithstanding the stringent prohibitions on
the subject, in procuring a keg of whiskey from some of the traders
who yet remained, so armed with that and their other treasures,
they assembled at an appointed spot, not far from the scene of the
catastrophe, and sitting down with the keg in their midst, they
commenced their affliction. The more they drank the more clamorous
became their grief, and the faster flowed their tears.

In the midst of these demonstrations a little figure, bent and
staggering, covered with mud and all in disorder, with a countenance
full of wonder and sympathy, approached them and began,

"Why's what? what? Who's dead?"

"Who! dead?" repeated they, looking up in astonishment. "Why, you're
dead! you were drowned in Swan Lake! Did not we find your blanket
there? Come, sit down and help us mourn."

The old man did not wait for a second invitation. He took his seat and
cried and drank with the rest, weeping and lamenting as bitterly as any
of them, and the strange scene was continued as long as they had power
to articulate, or any portion of the whiskey was left.



The Indians, of whatever tribe, are exceedingly fond of narrating or
listening to tales and stories, whether historical or fictitious.
They have their professed story-tellers, like the oriental nations,
and these go about, from village to village, collecting an admiring
and attentive audience, however oft-told and familiar the matter they

It is in this way that their traditions are preserved and handed down
unimpaired from generation to generation. Their knowledge of the
geography of their country is wonderfully exact. I have seen an Indian
sit in his lodge, and draw a map in the ashes, of the North-Western
States, not of its statistical but its geographical features, lakes,
rivers, and mountains, with the greatest accuracy, giving their
relative distances, by day's journeys, without hesitation, and even
extending his drawings and explanations as far as Kentucky and

Of biography they preserve not only the leading events in the life of
the person, but his features, appearance and bearing, his manners, and
whatever little trait or peculiarity characterized him.

The women are more fond of fiction, and some of their stories have a
strange mingling of humor and pathos. I give the two which follow as
specimens. The Indian names contained in them are in the Ottawa or
"Courte Oreilles" language, but the same tales are current in all the
different tongues and dialects.


This is an animal to which many peculiarities are attributed. He is
said to resemble the jackal in his habit of molesting the graves of the
dead, and the Indians have a superstitious dread of hearing his bark at
night, believing that it forebodes calamity and death. They say, too,
that he was originally of one uniform reddish-brown color, but that his
legs became black in the manner related in the story.

There was a chief of a certain village who had a beautiful daughter. He
resolved upon one occasion to make a feast, and invite all the animals.
When the invitation was brought to the red fox he inquired, "What are
you going to have for supper?"

"_Mee-dau-mee-nau-bo_," was the reply.

This is a porridge made of parched corn, slightly cracked. The fox
turned up his little sharp nose. "No, I thank you," said he, "I can get
plenty of that at home."

The messenger returned to the chief, and reported the contemptuous
refusal of the fox.

"Go back to him," said the chief, "and tell him we are going to have a
nice fresh body,[AT] and we will have it cooked in the most delicate
maimer possible."

[Footnote AT: The Indians in relating a story like this, apologise for
alluding to a revolting subject. "You will think this _unpleasant_,"
they say.]

Pleased with the prospect of such a treat, the fox gave a very hearty
assent to the second invitation.

The hour arrived, and he sat off for the lodge of the chief to attend
the feast. The company were all prepared for him, for they made common
cause with their friend who had been insulted. As the fox entered,
the guest next the door with great courtesy rose from his place, and
begged the new-comer to be seated. Immediately the person next him
also rose, and insisted that the fox should occupy his place, as it
was still nearer the fire--the post of honor. Then the third, with
many expressions of civility, pressed him to exchange with him, and
thus, with many ceremonious flourishes, he was passed along the circle,
always approaching the fire, where a huge cauldron stood, in which the
good cheer was still cooking. The fox was by no means unwilling to
occupy the highest place in the assembly, and besides, he was anxious
to take a peep into the kettle, for he had his suspicions that he might
be disappointed of the delicacies he had been expecting.

So, by degrees, he was ushered nearer and nearer the great blazing
fire, until by a dexterous push and shove he was hoisted into the
seething kettle.

His feet were dreadfully scalded, but he leaped out, and ran home
to his lodge, howling and crying with pain. His grandmother, with
whom, according to the custom of animals, he lived, demanded of him
an account of the affair. When he had faithfully related all the
circumstances (for, unlike the civilized animals, he did not think of
telling his grandmother a story), she reproved him very strongly.

"You have committed two great faults," said she. "In the first place
you were very rude to the chief who was so kind as to invite you, and
by returning insult for civility, you made yourself enemies who were
determined to punish you. In the next place, it was very unbecoming in
you to be so forward to take the place of honor. Had you been contented
modestly to keep your seat near the door, you would have escaped the
misfortune that has befallen you."

All this was not very consolatory to the poor fox, who continued to
whine and cry most piteously, while his grandmother, having finished
her lecture, proceeded to bind up his wounds. Great virtue is supposed
to be added to all medical prescriptions and applications by a little
dancing, so, the dressing having been applied, the grandmother fell to
dancing with all her might, round and round in the lodge.

When she was nearly exhausted, the fox said, "Grandmother, take off the
bandages and see if my legs are healed."

She did as he requested, but no--the burns were still fresh. She danced
and danced again. Now and then, as he grew impatient, she would remove
the coverings to observe the effect of the remedies. At length, towards
morning, she looked, and, to be sure, the burns were quite healed. "But
oh!" cried she, "your legs are as black as a coal! They were so badly
burned that they will never return to their color!"

The poor fox, who, like many another brave, was vain of his legs, fell
into a transport of lamentation.

"Oh! my legs! My pretty red legs! What shall I do? The young girls will
all despise me. I shall never dare to show myself among them again!"

He cried and sobbed until his grandmother, fatigued with her exercise,
fell asleep. By this time he had decided upon his plan of revenge.

He rose and stole softly out of his lodge, and pursuing his way rapidly
towards the village of the chief, he turned his face in the direction
of the principal lodge and barked. When the inhabitants heard this
sound in the stillness of the night, their hearts trembled. They knew
that it foreboded sorrow and trouble to some one of their number.

A very short time elapsed before the beautiful daughter of the chief
fell sick, and she grew rapidly worse and worse, spite of medicines,
charms, and dances. At length she died. The fox had not intended
to bring misfortune on the village in this shape, for he loved the
beautiful daughter of the chief, so he kept in his lodge and mourned
and fretted for her death.

Preparations were made for a magnificent funeral, but the friends of
the deceased were in great perplexity. "If we bury her in the earth,"
said they, "the fox will come and disturb her remains. He has barked
her to death, and he will be glad to come and finish his work of

They took counsel together, and determined to hang her body high in a
tree as a place of sepulture. They thought the fox would go groping
about in the earth, and not lift up his eyes to the branches above his

But the grandmother had been at the funeral, and she returned and told
the fox all that had been done.

"Now, my son," said she, "listen to me. Do not meddle with the remains
of the Chief's daughter. You have done mischief enough already--leave
her in peace."

As soon as the grandmother was asleep at night, the fox rambled forth.
He soon found the place he sought, and came and sat under the tree
where the young girl had been placed. He gazed and gazed at her, all
the live-long night, and she appeared as beautiful as when in life. But
when the day dawned, and the light enabled him to see more clearly,
then he observed that decay was doing its work--that instead of a
beautiful, she presented only a loathsome appearance.

He went home sad and afflicted, and passed all the day mourning in his

"Have you disturbed the remains of the Chief's beautiful daughter?" was
his parent's anxious question.

"No, grandmother,"--and he uttered not another word.

Thus it went on for many days and nights. The fox always took care to
quit his watch at the early dawn of day, for he knew that her friends
would suspect him, and come betimes to see if all was right.

At length he perceived that, gradually, she looked less and less
hideous in the morning light, and that she by degrees resumed the
appearance she had presented in life, so that in process of time, her
beauty and look of health quite returned to her.

One day he said, "Grandmother, give me my pipe, that I may take a

"Ah!" cried she, "you begin to be comforted. You have never smoked
since the death of the chief's beautiful daughter. Have you heard some
good news?"

"Never you mind," said he, "bring the pipe."

He sat down and smoked, and smoked. After a time he said, "Grandmother,
sweep your lodge and put it all in order, for this day you will receive
a visit from your daughter-in-law."

The grandmother did as she was desired. She swept her lodge, and
arranged it with all the taste she possessed, and then both sat down to
await the visit.

"When you hear a sound at the door," said the Fox, "you must give the
salutation, and say. Come in."

When they had been thus seated for a time, the grandmother heard a
faint, rustling sound. She looked towards the door. To her surprise,
the mat which usually hung as a curtain was rolled up, and the door was

"Peen-tee-geen n'dau-nis!"[AU] cried she.

[Footnote AU: Come in, my daughter.]

Something like a faint, faint shadow appeared to glide in. It took
gradually a more distinct outline. As she looked and looked, she began
to discern the form and features of the Chief's beautiful daughter, but
it was long before she appeared like a reality, and took her place in
the lodge like a thing of flesh and blood.

They kept the matter hid very close, for they would not for the world
that the father or friends of the bride should know what had happened.
Soon, however, it began to be rumored about that the chief's beautiful
daughter had returned to life, and was living in the Red Fox's lodge.
How it ever became known was a mystery, for, of course, the grandmother
never spoke of it.

Be that as it may, the news created great excitement in the village.
"This must never be," said they all. "He barked her to death once, and
who knows what he may do next time."

The father took at once a decided part. "The Red Fox is not worthy of
my daughter," he said. "I had promised her to the Hart, the finest and
most elegant among the animals. Now that she has returned to life, I
shall keep my word."

So the friends all went in a body to the lodge of the Red Fox. The
bridegroom, the bride and the grandmother, made all the resistance
possible, but they were overpowered by numbers, and the Hart having
remained conveniently, waiting on the outside where there was no
danger, the beautiful daughter of the chief was placed upon his back,
and he coursed away through the forest to carry her to his own home.
When he arrived at the door of his lodge, however, he turned his head,
but no bride was in the place where he expected to see her. He had
thought his burden very light from the beginning, but that he supposed
was natural to spirits returned from the dead. He never imagined she
had at the outset glided from her seat, and in the midst of the tumult
slipped back, unobserved, to her chosen husband.

One or two attempts were made by the friends, after this, to repossess
themselves of the young creature, but all without success. Then they
said, "Let her remain where she is. It is true the Red Fox occasioned
her death, but by his watchfulness and care he caressed her into life
again; therefore she rightfully belongs to him." So the Red Fox and his
beautiful bride lived long together in great peace and happiness.



There was a young man named Shee-shee-banze (the Little Duck), paddling
his canoe along the shore of the lake.

Two girls came down to the edge of the water, and seeing him, the elder
said to the younger, "Let us call to him to take us a sail."

It must be remarked that in all Indian stories where two or more
sisters are the dramatis personæ, the elder is invariably represented
as silly, ridiculous and disgusting--the younger, as wise and beautiful.

In the present case the younger remonstrated. "Oh! no," said she, "let
us not do such a thing. What will he think of us?"

But the other persevered, and called to him, "Ho! come and take us into
your canoe." The young man obeyed, and approaching the shore, he took
them with him into the canoe.

"Who are you?" asked the elder sister.

"I am _Way-gee-mar-kin_," replied he, "the great Chief."

This Way-gee-mar-kin was something of a fairy, for when surrounded by
his followers, and wishing to confer favors on them, he had a habit of
coughing slightly, when there would fly forth from his mouth quantities
of silver brooches, ear-bobs and other ornaments, for which it was the
custom of his people to scramble, each striving, as in more civilized
life, to get more than his share.

Accordingly, the elder sister said, "If you are Way-gee-mar-kin, let us
see your cough."

Shee-shee-banze had a few of these silver ornaments which he had got by
scrambling, and which he kept stowed away in the sides of his mouth in
case of emergency. So he gave some spasmodic coughs and brought forth a
few, which the girl eagerly seized.

After a time, as they paddled along, a fine noble elk came forth from
the forest, and approached the water to drink.

"What is that?" asked the spokeswoman; for the younger sister sat
silent and modest all the time.

"It is my dog that I hunt with."

"Call him to us, that I may see him."

Shee-shee-banze called, but the elk turned and fled into the woods.

"He does not seem to obey you, however."

"No, it is because you inspire him with disgust, and therefore he flies
from you."

Soon a bear made his appearance by the water's edge.

"What is that?"

"One of my servants."

Again he was requested to call him, and as the call was disregarded,
the same reason as before was assigned.

Their excursion was at length ended. There had been a little magic in
it, for although the young girls had supposed themselves to be in a
canoe, there was, in reality, no canoe at all. They only imagined it to
have been so.

Now Shee-shee-banze lived with his grandmother, and to her lodge he
conducted his young friends.

They stood outside while he went in.

"Grandmother," said he, "I have brought you two young girls, who will
be your daughters-in-law. Invite them into your lodge."

Upon this, the old woman called, "Ho! come in," and they entered. They
were made welcome and treated to the best of everything.

In the meantime, the real Way-gee-mar-kin, the great chief, made
preparations for a grand feast. When he was sending his messenger
out with the invitations, he said to him, "Be very particular to bid
Shee-shee-banze to the feast, for as he is the smallest and meanest
person in the tribe, you must use double ceremony with him, or he will
be apt to think himself slighted."

Shee-shee-banze sat in his lodge with his new friends, when the
messenger arrived.

"Ho! Shee-shee-banze," cried he, "you are invited to a great feast that
Way-gee-mar-kin is to give to-night, to all his subjects."

But Shee-shee-banze took no notice of the invitation. He only whistled,
and pretended not to hear. The messenger repeated his words, and
finding that no attention was paid to them, he went his way.

The young girls looked at each other, during this scene, greatly
astonished. At length the elder spoke.

"What does this mean?" said she. "Why does he call you Shee-shee-banze,
and invite you to visit Way-gee-mar-kin?"

"Oh!" said Shee-shee-banze, "it is one of my followers that always
likes to be a little impudent. I am obliged to put up with it
sometimes, but you observed that I treated him with silent contempt."

The messenger returned to the chief, and reported the manner in which
the invitation had been received.

"Oh!" said the good-natured chief, "it is because he feels he is poor
and insignificant. Go back again--call him by my name, and make a
flourishing speech to him."

The messenger fulfilled his mission as he was bid.

"Way-gee-mar-kin," said he, pompously, "a great feast is to be given
to-night, and I am sent most respectfully to solicit the honor of your

"Did I not tell you?" said Shee-shee-banze to the maidens. Then nodding
with careless condescension, he added, "Tell them I'll come."

At night, Shee-shee-banze dressed himself in his very best paint,
feathers and ornaments--but before his departure he took his
grandmother aside.

"Be sure," said he, "that you watch these young people closely until I
come back. Shut up your lodge tight, _tight_. Let no one come in or go
out, and above all things, do not go to sleep."

These orders given, he went his way.

The grandmother tried her best to keep awake, but finding herself
growing more and more sleepy, as the night wore on, she took a strong
cord and laced across the mat which hung before the entrance to the
lodge, as the Indians lace up the mouths of their bags, and having seen
all things secure and the girls quiet in bed, she laid down and soon
fell into a comfortable sleep.

The young girls, in the meanwhile, were dying with curiosity to know
what had become of Shee-shee-banze, and as soon as they were sure
the old lady was asleep, they prepared to follow him, and see what
was going on. Fearing, however, that the grandmother might awake and
discover their absence, they took two logs of wood, and putting them
under the blanket, so disposed them as to present the appearance
of persons sleeping quietly. They then cut the cords that fastened
the door, and, guided by the sounds of the music, the dancing, and
the merry-making, they soon found their way to the dwelling of

When they entered, they saw the chief seated on a throne, surrounded
by light and splendor. Everything was joy and amusement. Crowds of
courtiers were in the apartment, all dressed in the most brilliant
array. The strangers looked around for their friend Shee-shee-banze,
but he was nowhere to be seen.

Now and then the chief would cough, when a shower of silver ornaments
and precious things would fly in all directions, and instantly, a
scramble would commence among the company, to gather them up and
appropriate them. As they thus rushed forward, the brides elect saw
their poor little friend crowded up into a corner, where nobody took
any notice of him, except to push him aside, or step on him whenever he
was in the way. He uttered piteous little squeaks as one and another
would thus maltreat him, but he was too busy taking care of himself to
perceive that those whom he had left snug at home in the lodge were
witnesses of all that was going on.

At length the signal was given for the company to retire, all but the
two young damsels, upon whom Way-gee-mar-kin had set his eye, and to
whom he had sent, by one of his assistants, great offers to induce them
to remain with him and become his wives.

Poor Shee-shee-banze returned to his lodge, but what was his
consternation to find the door open!

"Ho! grandmother," cried he, "is this the way you keep watch?"

The old woman started up. "There are my daughters-in-law," said she,
pointing to the two logs of wood. Shee-shee-banze threw himself on
the ground between them. His back was broken by coming so violently
in contact with them, but that he did not mind--he thought only of
revenge, and the recovery of his sweethearts.

He waited but to get some powerful poison and prepare it, and then he
stole softly back to the wigwam of Way-gee-mar-kin. All was silent, and
he crept in without making the slightest noise. There lay the chief,
with a young girl on each side of him.

They were all sound asleep, the chief lying on his back, with his mouth
wide open. Before he was aware of it, the poison was down his throat,
and Shee-shee-banze had retreated quietly to his own lodge.

The next morning the cry went through the village that Way-gee-mar-kin
had been found dead in his bed. Of course it was attributed to
over indulgence at the feast. All was grief and lamentation. "Let
us go and tell poor Shee-shee-banze," said one, "he was so fond of

They found him sitting on a bank fishing. He had been up at peep of
day, to make preparation for receiving intelligence.

He had caught two or three fish, and, extracting their bladders, had
filled them with blood, and tied them under his arm. When the friends
of Way-gee-mar-kin saw him, they called out to him,

"Oh! Shee-shee-banze, your friend. Way-gee-mar-kin, is dead!" With a
gesture of despair, Shee-shee-banze drew his knife and plunged it, not
into his heart, but into the bladders filled with blood that he had
prepared. As he fell, apparently lifeless to the ground, the messengers
began to reproach themselves: "Oh! why did we tell him so suddenly?
We might have known he would not survive it. Poor Shee-shee-banze! he
loved Way-gee-mar-kin so."

To their great surprise, the day after the funeral, Shee-shee-banze
came walking toward the wigwam of the dead chief. As he walked, he
sang, or rather chanted to a monotonous strain[AV] the following:

    Way-gee-mar-kin is dead, is dead,
    I know who killed him.
    I guess it was I--I guess it was I.

[Footnote AV: The Indians sing these words to an air peculiar to

All the village was aroused. Everybody flew in pursuit of the murderer,
but he evaded them, and escaped to a place of safety.

Soon after, he again made his appearance, mincing as he walked, and
singing to the same strain as before.

    If you wish to take and punish me.
    Let the widows come and catch me.

It seemed a good idea, and the young women were recommended to go
and entice the culprit into the village, so that the friends of the
deceased could lay hold of him.

They went forth on their errand. Shee-shee-banze would suffer them to
approach, then he would dance off a little now he would allow them to
come quite near; anon he would retreat a little before them, all the
time singing.

    Come, pretty widows, come and catch me.

Thus he decoyed them on, occasionally using honied words and flattering
speeches, until he had gained their consent to return with him to his
lodge, and take up their abode with him.

The friends of the murdered chief were scandalized at such inconstancy,
and resolved to punish all three, as soon as they could catch them.

They surrounded his lodge with cries and threatenings, but
Shee-shee-banze and his two brides had contrived to elude their
vigilance and gain his canoe, which lay in the river, close at hand.

Hardly were they on board, when their escape was discovered. The
whole troop flew after them. Some plunged into the stream, and seized
the canoe. In the struggle it was upset, but immediately on touching
the water, whether from the magical properties of the canoe, or the
necromantic skill of the grandmother, they were transformed into ducks,
and flew quacking away.

Since that time, the water-fowl of this species are always found in
companies of three--two females and a male.

       *       *       *       *       *

The Canard de France, or Mallard, and the Brancheuse, or Wood Duck, are
of different habits from the foregoing, flying in pairs. Indeed, the
constancy of the latter is said to be so great that if he loses his
mate he never takes another partner, but goes mourning to the end of
his days.



The payment over, and the Indians dispersed, we prepared ourselves
to settle down quietly in our little home. But now, a new source of
disturbance arose.

My husband's accounts of disbursements as Agent of the Winnebagoes,
which he had forwarded to the Department at Washington, had failed to
reach there, of which he received due notice--that is to say, such
a notice as could reach us by the circuitous and uncertain mode of
conveyance by which intercourse with the eastern world was then kept
up. If the vouchers for the former expenditures, together with the
recent payment of $15,000, annuity money, should not be forthcoming, it
might place him in a very awkward position, so he decided to go at once
to Washington, and be the bearer himself of his duplicate accounts.

"Should you like to go and see your father and mother," said he to me,
one morning, "and show them how the west agrees with you?"

It was a most joyful suggestion after a year's separation, and in a few
days all things were in readiness for our departure.

There was visiting us, at that time, Miss Brush, of Detroit, who had
come from Green Bay with Mr. and Mrs. Whitney and Miss Frances Henshaw,
on an excursion to the Mississippi.[92] Our little india-rubber house
had contrived to expand itself for the accommodation of the whole
party during the very pleasant visit they made us.

The arrival of two young ladies, was, as may be imagined, quite a
godsend to the unmarried lieutenants, and when, tired of the journey,
or intimidated by the snow which fell eight inches on the 4th of
October, Miss Brush determined to give up the remainder of her
excursion, and accept our pressing invitation to remain with us, until
the return of her friends, we were looked upon as public benefactors.
She was now to accompany us to Green Bay, and possibly to Detroit.

Our voyage down the river was without incident, and we reached
Green Bay just as all the place was astir in the expectation of the
arrival of one of Mr. Newberry's schooners. This important event was
the subject of interest to the whole community, from Fort Howard
to "Dickenson's." To some its arrival would bring friends, to some
supplies--to the ladies, the fashions, to the gentlemen, the news, for
it was the happy bearer of the mails, not for that place alone, but for
all the "upper country."

In a few days the vessel arrived. She brought a mail for Fort
Winnebago, which in the winter season only was carried by land to that
place, via _Niles Settlement_ and Chicago.

In virtue of his office as Post Master, my husband opened the
mail-bag, and took possession of his own letters. One informed him
of the satisfactory appearance of the missing accounts, but oh! sad
disappointment, another brought the news that my parents had gone to
Kentucky for the winter--not to any city or accessible place, but up
"the Sandy," and over among the mountains of Virginia, hunting up old
land claims belonging to my grandfather's estate.

It was vain to hope to follow them. We might hardly expect to find them
during the short period we could be absent from home--not even were we
to receive the lucid directions once given my father by an old settler
during his explorations through that wild region.

"You must go up _Tug_," said the man, "and down _Troublesome_, and fall
over on to _Kingdom-come_."[AW]

[Footnote AW: Three streams or water-courses of that region.]

We did not think it advisable to undertake such an expedition, so we
made up our minds to retrace our steps to Fort Winnebago.

No boats were in readiness to ascend the river. Hamilton Arndt promised
to have one in preparation at once, but time passed by, and no boat was
made ready.

It was now the beginning of November. We were passing our time very
pleasantly with the Irwins and Whitneys, and at the residence of
Colonel Stambaugh, the Indian agent,[93] but still this delay was
inconvenient and vexatious.

I suggested undertaking the journey on horseback. "No, indeed," was the
answer I invariably received. "No mortal woman has ever gone that road,
unless it was on foot, nor ever could."

"But suppose we set out in the boat and get frozen in on the way. We
can neither pass the winter there, nor possibly find our way to a human
habitation. We have had one similar experience already. Is it not
better to take it for granted that I can do what you and others of your
sex have done?"

Dr. Finley, the post-surgeon at Fort Howard, on hearing the matter
debated, offered me immediately his favorite horse Charlie. "He was
very surefooted," the Doctor alleged, "and capital in a marsh or
troublesome stream."

By land, then, it was decided to go, and as soon as our old
Mee-no-mo-nee friend, "Wish-tay-yun," who was as good a guide by land
as by water, could be summoned, we set off, leaving our trunks to be
forwarded by Hamilton Arndt, whenever it should please him to carry out
his intention of sending up his boat.

We waited until a late hour on the morning of our departure for our
fellow-travellers, Mr. Wing, of Monroe,[AX] and Dr. Philleo, of
Galena; but finding they did not join us, we resolved to lose no time,
confident that we should all meet at the Kakalin in the course of the

[Footnote AX: At that time a delegate to Congress from the Territory.]

After crossing the river at what is now Despere,[94] and entering the
wild, unsettled country on the west of the river, we found a succession
of wooded hills, separated by ravines so narrow and steep that it
seemed impossible that any animals but mules or goats could make their
way among them.

Wish-tay-yun took the lead. The horse he rode was accustomed to the
country, and well trained to this style of road. As for Charlie, he was
perfectly admirable. When he came to a precipitous descent, he would
set forward his fore-feet, and slide down on his haunches in the most
scientific manner, while my only mode of preserving my balance was to
hold fast by the bridle, and lay myself almost flat upon his back. Then
our position suddenly changed, and we were scaling the opposite bank,
at the imminent risk of falling backward into the ravine below.

It was amusing to see Wish-tay-yun, as he scrambled on ahead, now and
then turning partly round to see how I fared. And when, panting and
laughing, I at length reached the summit, he would throw up his hands,
and shout with the utmost glee, "Mamma Manitou!" (My mother is a

Our old acquaintances, the Grignons, seemed much surprised that I
should have ventured on such a journey. They had never taken it,
although they had lived so long at the Ka-kalin,[95] but then there was
no reason why they should have done so. They could always command a
canoe or a boat when they wished to visit "the bay."

As we had anticipated, our gentlemen joined us at supper. "They had
delayed to take dinner with Col. Stambaugh--had had a delightful gallop
up from the bay--had seen no ravines, nor anything but fine smooth
roads--might have been asleep, but if so, were not conscious of it."
This was the account they gave of themselves, to our no small amusement.

From the Ka-kalin to the Butte des Morts,[96] where now lived a man
named Knaggs, was our next day's stage. The country was rough and wild,
much like that we had passed through the spring before, in going from
Hamilton's diggings to Kellogg's Grove, but we were fortunate in having
Wish-tay-yun, rather than Mr. H., for our guide, so that we could make
our way with some degree of moderation.

We had travelled but forty miles when we reached Knaggs', yet I was
both cold and fatigued, so that the sight of the cosy little room in
which we found Mrs. Knaggs, and the bright fire, were most cheering
objects; and as we had only broken our fast since morning, with a few
crackers we carried in our pockets, I must own we did ample justice to
her nice coffee and cakes, not to mention venison-steaks and bear's
meat, the latter of which I had never before tasted, and which, truth
to tell, I never wished to taste again.

Our supper over, we looked about for a place of repose. The room in
which we had taken our meal was of small dimensions, just sufficient to
accommodate a bed, a table placed against the wall, and the few chairs
on which we sat. There was no room for any kind of a "shake down."

"Where can you put us for the night?" inquired my husband of Mr.
Knaggs, when he made his appearance.

"Why, there is no place that I know of, unless you can camp down in the
old building outside."

We went to look at it. It consisted of one room, bare and dirty. A
huge chimney, in which a few brands were burning, occupied nearly one
side of the apartment. Against another was built a rickety sort of
bunk. This was the only vestige of furniture to be seen. The floor was
thickly covered with mud and dirt, in the midst of which, near the
fire, was seated an old Indian with a pan of boiled corn on his lap,
which he was scooping up with both hands, and devouring with the utmost

We soon discovered that he was blind. On hearing footsteps and voices,
he instinctively gathered his dish of food close to him, and began some
morose grumblings; but when he was told that it was "Shaw-nee-aw-kee"
who was addressing him, his features relaxed into a more agreeable
expression, and he even held forth his dish and invited us to share its

"But are we to stay here?" I asked. "Can we not sleep out of doors?"

"We have no tent," replied my husband, "and the weather is too cold to
risk the exposure without one."

"I could sit in a chair all night, by the fire."

"Then you would not be able to ride to Bellefontaine to-morrow."

There was no alternative. The only thing Mr. Knaggs could furnish in
the shape of bedding was a small bearskin. The bunk was a trifle less
filthy than the floor, so upon its boards we spread first the skin,
then our saddle-blankets, and with a pair of saddle-bags for a bolster,
I wrapped myself in my cloak, and resigned myself to my distasteful

The change of position from that I had occupied through the day,
probably brought some rest, but sleep I could not. Even on a softer and
more agreeable couch, the snoring of the old Indian and two or three
companions who had joined him, and his frequent querulous exclamations
as he felt himself encroached upon in the darkness, would have
effectually banished slumber from my eyes.

It was a relief to rise and prepare for the journey of the day. Where
our fellow-travellers had bestowed themselves I knew not, but they
evidently had fared no better than we. They were in fine spirits,
however, and we cheerfully took our breakfast and were ferried over the
river to continue on the trail from that point to Bellefontaine, twelve
miles from Fort Winnebago.

The great "bug-bear" of this road, Mau-zhee-gaw-gaw Swamp, was the next
thing to be encountered. We reached it about nine o'clock. It spread
before us a vast expanse of morass, about half a mile in width, and of
length interminable, partly covered with water, with black knobs rising
here and there above the surface, to afford a precarious foothold for
the animals in crossing it. Where the water was not, there lay in place
of it, a bed of black oozy mud, which threatened to give way under the
foot, and let it, at each step, sink into an unknown depth.

This we were now to traverse. All three of the gentlemen went in
advance of me, each hoping, as he said, to select the surest and
firmest path for me to follow. One and another would call, "Here,
madam, come this way!" "This is the best path, wifie--follow me," but
often Charlie knew better than either, and selected a path according to
his own judgment, which proved the best of the whole.

Once he went picking his way so slowly and cautiously, now pausing on
one little hillock, now on another, and anon turning aside to avoid a
patch of mud that seemed more than usually suspicious, that all the
company had got some little distance ahead of me. On raising my eyes,
which had been kept pretty closely on my horse's footsteps, I saw
my husband on foot, striving to lead his horse by the bridle from a
difficult position into which he had got, Mr. Wing and his great white
floundering animal, lying sideways in the mud, the rider using all
his efforts to extricate himself from the stirrups, and Dr. Philleo
standing at a little distance from his steed, who was doing his best
to rise up from a deep bog into which he had pitched himself. It was a
formidable sight! They all called out with one accord,

"Oh! do not come this way!"

"Indeed," cried I, "I have no thought of it. Charlie and I know
better"--and trusting to the sagacious creature, he picked his way
carefully along, and carried me safely past the dismounted company. I
could not refrain from a little triumphant flourish with my whip, as I
looked back upon them, and watched their progress to their saddles once

Three hours had we been thus unpleasantly engaged and yet we were not
over the "Slough of Despond." At length we drew near its farthest
verge. Here ran a deep stream of some five or six feet in width. The
gentlemen, as they reached it, dismounted, and began debating what was
to be done.

"Jump off, jump off, Madam," cried Mr. Wing, and "Jump off, jump off,"
echoed Dr. Philleo--"we are just consulting how we are to get you

"What do you think about it?" asked my husband. "Charlie will show
you," replied I. "Come, Charlie," and as I raised his bridle quickly,
with a pat on his neck and an encouraging chirp, he bounded over the
stream as lightly as a deer, and landed me safe on terra firma.

Poor Mr. Wing had fared the worst of the company; the clumsy animal he
rode seeming to be of opinion when he got into a difficulty that he had
nothing to do but to lie down and resign himself to his fate; while his
rider not being particularly light and agile, was generally undermost,
and half imbedded in the mire before he had quite made up his mind as
to his course of action.

It was therefore a wise movement in him, when he reached the little
stream, to plunge into it, and wade across, thus washing out, as much
as possible, the traces of the morning's adventures, from himself and
his steed, and the other gentlemen, having no alternative, concluded to
follow his example.

We did not halt long on the rising ground beyond the morass, for we had
a long stretch before us to Bellefontaine, forty-five miles, and those
none of the shortest.

Our horses travelled admirably the whole afternoon, Charlie keeping
a canter all the way, but it was now growing dark, and there were no
signs of the landmarks which were to indicate our near approach to the
desired haven.

"Can we not stop and rest us for a few moments under one of the
trees?" inquired I, for I was almost exhausted with fatigue, and to add
to our discomfort, a cold November rain was pouring upon us.

"If it were possible, we would," was the reply, "but see how dark it is
growing. If we should lose our way, it would be worse than being wet
and tired."

So we kept on. Just at dark we crossed a clear stream. "That," said my
husband, "is, I think, two miles from Bellefontaine. Cheer up--we shall
soon be there." Quite encouraged we pursued our way more cheerfully.
Mile after mile we passed, but still no light gleamed friendly through
the trees.

"We have certainly travelled more than six miles now," said I.

"Yes--that could not have been the two mile creek." It was eight
o'clock when we reached Bellefontaine.[97] We were ushered into a large
room made cheerful by a huge blazing fire. Mr. Wing and Dr. Philleo had
arrived before us, and there were other travellers, on their way from
the Mississippi. I was received with great kindness and volubility, by
the immense hostess, "la grosse Americaine," as she was called, and she
soon installed me in the arm-chair, in the warmest corner, and in due
time set an excellent supper before us.

But her hospitality did not extend to giving up her only bed for my
accommodation. She spread all the things she could muster on the hard
floor before the fire, and did what she could to make me comfortable;
then, observing my husband's solicitude lest I might feel ill from the
effects of the fatigue and rain, she remarked in tones of admiring
sympathy, "How kind your companion is to you!" An expression which, as
it was then new to us, amused us not a little.

Our travelling companions started early in the morning for the fort,
which was but twelve miles distant, and they were so kind as to take
charge of a note to our friends at home, requesting them to send Plante
with the carriage to take us the rest of the distance.

We reached there in safety, and thus ended the first journey by land
that any white woman had made from Green Bay to Fort Winnebago.



Late in the autumn, after our return, my husband took his mother
to Prairie du Chien for the benefit of medical advice from Dr.
Beaumont[98] of the U. S. Army. The journey was made in a large open
boat down the Wisconsin river, and it was proposed to take this
opportunity to bring back a good supply of corn for the winter's use of
both men and cattle.

The ice formed in the river, however, so early, that after starting
with his load, he was obliged to return with it to the Prairie, and
wait until the thick winter's ice enabled him to make a second journey,
and bring it up in sleighs--with so great an expense of time, labor,
and exposure, were the necessaries of life conveyed from one point to
another, through that wild and desolate region!

       *       *       *       *       *

The arrival of my brother Arthur from Kentucky, by way of the
Mississippi, in the latter part of April, brought us the uncomfortable
intelligence of new troubles with the Sauks and Foxes. Black Hawk had,
with the flower of his nation, recrossed the Mississippi, once more to
take possession of their old homes and cornfields.[AY]

[Footnote AY: See appendix.]

It was not long before our own Indians came flocking in, to confirm the
tidings, and to assure us of their intention to remain faithful friends
to the Americans. We soon heard of the arrival of the Illinois Rangers
in the Rock River country, also of the progress of the regular force
under Gen. Atkinson, in pursuit of the hostile Indians, who, by the
reports, were always able to elude their vigilance. It not being their
custom to stop and give battle, the Sauks soon scattered themselves
through the country, trusting to some lucky accident (and they arrived,
alas! only too often), to enable them to fall upon their enemies

The experience of the pursuing army was, for the most part, to make
their way, by toilsome and fatiguing marches to the spot where they
imagined the Sauks would be waiting to receive them, and then to
discover that the rogues had scampered off to quite a different part of
the country.

Wherever these latter went, their course was marked by the most
atrocious barbarities, though the worst had not, at this time, reached
our ears. We were only assured that they were down in the neighborhood
of the Rock river, and Kishwaukee, and that they lost no opportunity of
falling upon the defenceless inhabitants, and cruelly murdering them.

As soon as it became certain that the Sauks and Foxes would not pursue
the same course they had on the previous year, that is, retreat
peaceably across the Mississippi, Mr. Kinzie resolved to hold a council
with all the principal chiefs of the Winnebagoes, who were accessible
at this time. He knew that the Sauks would use every effort to induce
their neighbors to join them, and that there existed in the breasts
of too many of the young savages a desire to distinguish themselves
by "taking some white scalps." They did not love the Americans--why
should they? By them they had been gradually dispossessed of the broad
and beautiful domains of their forefathers, and hunted from place
to place, and the only equivalent they had received in exchange had
been a few thousands annually in silver and presents, together with
the pernicious example, the debasing influence, and the positive
ill-treatment of too many of the new settlers upon their lands.

With all these facts in view, therefore, their "father" felt that the
utmost watchfulness was necessary, and that the strongest arguments
must be brought forward, to preserve the young men of the Winnebagoes
in their allegiance to the Americans. Of the older members he felt
quite sure. About fifty lodges had come at the commencement of the
disturbances, and encamped around our dwelling, saying, that if the
Sauks attacked us, it must be after killing them; and, knowing them
well, we had perfect confidence in their assurances.

But their vicinity, while it gave us a feeling of protection, likewise
furnished us with a channel of the most exciting and agitating daily
communications. As the theatre of operations approached nearer and
nearer, intelligence was brought from one of their runners--now, that
"Captain Harney's head had been recognized in the Sauk camp, where it
had been brought the day previous," next, "that the Sauks were carrying
Lieut. Beall's head on a pole in front of them as they marched to meet
the whites." Sometimes it was a story which we afterwards found to be
true, as that of the murder of their agent, Mr. St. Vrain, at Kellogg's
Grove, by the Sauks themselves, who ought to have protected him.

It was after the news of this last occurrence, that the appointed
council with the Winnebagoes was to be held at the Four Lakes,
thirty-five miles distant from Fort Winnebago.

In vain we pleaded and remonstrated against such an exposure. "It was
his duty to assemble and talk to them," my husband said, "and he must
run the risk, if there were any. He had perfect confidence in the
Winnebagoes. The enemy, by all he could learn, were now far distant
from the Four Lakes--probably at Kosh-ko-nong. He would set off early
in the morning with Paquette, hold his council, and return to us the
same evening."

It were useless to attempt to describe our feelings during that long
and dreary day. When night arrived the cry of a drunken Indian, or even
the barking of a dog, would fill our hearts with terror.

As we sat, at a late hour, at the open window, listening to every
sound, with what joy did we at length distinguish the tramp of
horses--we knew it to be Griffin and Jerry ascending the hill, and
a cheerful shout soon announced that all was well. They had ridden
seventy miles that day, besides holding a long "talk" with the Indians.

The Winnebagoes in council had promised to use their utmost endeavors
to preserve peace and good order among their young men. They informed
their father that the bands on the Rock river, with the exception
of Win-no-sheek's were all determined to remain friendly, and keep
aloof from the Sauks. To that end, they were all abandoning their
villages and cornfields, and moving north, that their Great Father,
the President, might not feel dissatisfied with them. With regard to
Win-no-sheek and his people, they professed themselves unable to answer.

Time went on, and brought with it stories of fresh outrages. Among
these were the murders of Auberry, Green, and Force, at Blue Mound,
and the attack on Apple Fort. The tidings of the latter were brought
by old Crély,[99] the father of Mrs. Paquette, who rode express from
Galena, and who averred that he once passed a bush behind which the
Sauks were hiding, but that his horse smelt the sweet-scented grass
with which they always adorn their persons when on a war-party, and
set out on such a gallop that he never stopped until he arrived at the

Another bearer of news was a young gentleman named Follett, whose eyes
had become so protruded, and set, from keeping an anxious lookout
for the enemy, that it was many days after his arrival at a place of
safety, before they resumed their accustomed limits and expression.

Among other rumors which at this time reached us, was one that an
attack upon the fort was in contemplation among the Sauks. That this
was certainly in no state of defence, the Indians very well knew. All
the effective men had been withdrawn, upon a requisition from General
Atkinson, to join him at his newly-built fort at Kosh-ko-nong.[100]

Fort Winnebago was not picketed in--there were no defences to the
barracks or officers' quarters, except slight panelled doors and
Venetian blinds--nothing that would long resist the blows of clubs
or hatchets. There was no artillery, and the Commissary's store was
without the bounds of the fort, under the hill.

Mr. Kinzie had, from the first, called the attention of the officers to
the insecurity of their position, in case of danger, but he generally
received a scoffing answer.

"Never fear," they would say--"the Sauks are not coming here to attack

One afternoon we had gone over on a visit to some friends in the
garrison, and several officers being present, the conversation, as
usual, turned upon the present position of affairs.

"Do you not think it wiser," inquired I, of a blustering young officer,
"to be prepared against possible danger?"

"Not against these fellows," replied he, contemptuously--"I do not
think I would even take the trouble to fasten the blinds to my

"At least," said I, "if you some night find a tomahawk raised to cleave
your skull, you will have the consolation of remembering that you have
not been one of those foolish fellows who keep on the safe side."

He seemed a little nettled at this, and still more so when sister
Margaret observed:

"For my part, I am of Governor Cass' opinion. He was at Chicago during
the Winnebago war. We were all preparing to move into the fort on the
first alarm. Some were for being brave and delaying, like our friends
here. 'Come, come,' said the Governor, 'hurry into the fort as fast
as possible--there is no merit in being brave with the Indians. It is
the height of folly to stay and meet danger which you may by prudence

In a few days our friends waked up to the conviction that something
must be done at once. The first step was to forbid any Winnebago coming
within the garrison, lest they should find out what they had known as
well as ourselves for three months past--namely, the feebleness of the
means of resistance. The next was to send "fatigue-parties" into the
woods, under the protection of a guard, to cut pickets for enclosing
the garrison.

There was every reason to believe that the enemy were not very far
distant, and that their object in coming north was to break away into
the Chippewa country, where they would find a place of security among
their friends and allies. The story that our Indian runners brought in
most frequently was, that the Sauks were determined to fall upon the
whites at the Portage and Fort, and massacre all, except the families
of the Agent and Interpreter.

Plante and Pillon with their families had departed at the first word
of danger. There only remained with us Manaigre, whose wife was a
half-Winnebago, Isidore Morrin, and the blacksmiths from Sugar Creek,
Mâtâ, and Turcotte.

At night we were all regularly armed and our posts assigned us. After
every means had been taken to make the house secure, the orders were
given. Sister Margaret and I, in case of attack, were to mount with the
children to the rooms above, while my husband and his men were to make
good their defence as long as possible against the enemy. Since I had
shown my sportsmanship by bringing down accidentally a blackbird on the
wing, I felt as if I could do some execution with my little pistols,
which were regularly placed beside my pillow at night, and I was fully
resolved to use them, if necessity required it, and I do not remember
to have had the slightest compunction at the idea of taking the lives
of two Sauks, as I had no doubt I should do, and this explains to me
what I had before often wondered at, the indifference of the soldier on
the field of battle to the destruction of human life. Had I been called
upon, however, to use my weapons effectually, I should no doubt have
looked back upon it with horror.

Surrounded as we were by Indian lodges, which seldom became perfectly
quiet, and excited as our nerves had become by all that we were daily
in the habit of hearing, we seldom slept very soundly. One night, after
we had as much as possible composed ourselves, we were startled at a
late hour by a tap upon the window at the head of our bed, and a call
of "Chon! Chon!"[AZ] (John! John!)

[Footnote AZ: The Indians who had "been at Washington," were very fond
of calling their father thus. Black Wolf's son would go farther and
vociferate "K'hizzie," to show his familiarity.]

"Tshah-ko-zhah?" (What is it?)

It was Hoo-wau-ne-kah, the little Elk. He spoke rapidly, and in a tone
of great agitation. I could not understand him, and I lay trembling,
and dreading to hear his errand interpreted. Now and then I could
distinguish the words Sau-kee (Sauks) and Shoonk-hat-tay-rah (horse),
and they were not very reassuring.

The subject I soon learned was this: A fresh trail had been observed
near the Petit Rocher, on the Wisconsin, and the people at the villages
on the Barribault[101] were in a state of great alarm, fearing it might
be the Sauks. There was the appearance of a hundred or more horses
having passed by this trail. Hoo-wau-ne-kah had been dispatched at once
to tell their father, and to ask his advice.

After listening to all he had to communicate, his father told him the
trail was undoubtedly that of General Henry's troops, who were said
to have come North, looking for the enemy. That as the marks of the
horses' hoofs showed them, by this report, to have been shod, that was
sufficient proof that it was not the trail of the Sauks. He thought
that the people at the villages need not feel any uneasiness.

"Very well, father," replied Hoo-wau-ne-kah, "I will go back and tell
my people what you say. They will believe you, for you always tell them
the truth. You are not like us Indians, who sometimes deceive each
other." So saying, he returned to his friends, much comforted.

The completion of the picketing and other defences, together with
the arrival of a detachment of troops from Fort Howard under Lieut.
Hunter,[102] at our fort now seemed to render the latter the place of
greatest safety. We therefore regularly, every evening before dusk,
took up our line of march for the opposite side of the river, and
repaired to quarters that had been assigned us within the garrison,
leaving our own house and chattels to the care of the Frenchmen and our
friends, the Winnebagoes.

It was on one of these days that we were sitting at the windows which
looked out on the Portage--indeed, we seldom sat anywhere else, our
almost constant occupation being to look abroad and see what was coming
next--when a loud, long, shrill whoop from a distance gave notice
of something to be heard. "The news--halloo! what could it portend?
What were we about to hear?" By gazing intently towards the farthest
extremity of the road, we could perceive a moving body of horsemen,
which, as they approached, we saw to be Indians. They were in full
costume. Scarlet streamers fluttered at the ends of their lances--their
arms glittered in the sun. Presently, as they drew nearer, their
paint, and feathers and brooches became visible. There were fifty or
more warriors. What could it denote? They passed the road which turns
to the fort, and rode directly up the hill leading to the Agency.
Shaw-nee-aw-kee was absent. The Interpreter had been sent for on the
first distant appearance of the strangers, but had not yet arrived. The
party having ascended the hill, halted near the blacksmith's shop, but
did not dismount.

Our hearts trembled--it must surely be the enemy. At this moment my
husband appeared in the direction of the Interpreter's house. We called
to entreat him to stop, but he walked along towards the new comers.

       *       *       *       *       *

To our infinite joy we saw the Chief of the party dismount, and all the
others following his example, and approaching to shake hands.

A space was soon cleared around the leader and my husband, when the
former commenced an oration, flourishing his sword and using much
violent gesticulation. It was the first time I had seen an Indian armed
with that weapon, and I dreaded to perceive it in such hands. Sometimes
he appeared as if he were about to take off the head of his auditor at
a blow, and our hearts sank as we remembered the stratagems at Mackinac
and Detroit in former days. At length the speech was concluded, another
shaking of hands took place, and we saw my husband leading the way to
his storehouse, from which some of his men presently brought tobacco
and pipes, and laid them at the feet of the Chief.

Our suspense was soon relieved by being informed that the strangers
were Man-Eater, the principal Chief of the Rock River Indians, who had
come with his band to "hold a talk," and bring information.

These Indians were under the special care of Mr. Henry Gratiot,[103]
and his efforts had been most judicious and unremitting in preserving
the good feeling of this, the most dangerous portion of the Winnebagoes.

The intelligence that Man-Eater, who was a most noble Indian in
appearance and character, brought us, confirmed that already received,
namely, that the Sauks were gradually drawing north, towards the
Portage, although he evidently did not know exactly their whereabouts.

There was, soon after their departure, an arrival of another party of
Winnebagoes, and they requested permission to dance for their father.

The compliment having been accepted, they assembled, as usual, on the
esplanade in front of the house. My sister, the children and myself,
stationed ourselves at the open windows, according to custom, and my
husband sat on the broad step before the door, which opened from the
outer air directly into the parlor where we were.

The performance commenced, and as they proceeded, following each
other round and round in the progress of the dance, my sister, Mrs.
Helm, remarked to me, "Look at that small dark Indian, with the green
boughs on his person--that is _a Sauk!_ They always mark themselves in
this manner with white clay, and ornament themselves with leaves when
they dance!" In truth, I had never seen this costume among our own
Indians, and as I gazed at this one, with a green chaplet round his
head and his legs, and even his gun wreathed in the same manner, while
his body displayed no paint except the white transverse streaks with
which it was covered, I saw that he was, indeed, a stranger. Without
owing anything to the exaggeration of fear, his countenance was truly
ferocious. He held his gun in his hand, and every time the course of
the dance brought him directly in front of where we sat, he would turn
his gaze full upon us, and club his weapon before him with what we
interpreted into an air of defiance. We sat as still as death, for we
knew it would not be wise to exhibit any appearance of fear, but my
sister remarked in a low tone, "I have always thought that I was to
lose my life by the hands of the Indians--this is the third Indian war
I have gone through, and now, I suppose, it will be the last."

It was the only time I ever saw her lose her self-possession. She was
always remarkably calm and resolute, but now I could see that she
trembled. Still we sat there--there was a sort of fascination as our
imaginations became more and more excited. Presently, some raindrops
began to fall. The Indians continued their dance for a few minutes
longer, then, with whoopings and shoutings, they rushed simultaneously
towards the house. We fled into my apartment and closed the door, which
my sister at first held fast, but presently came and seated herself
by me on the bed, for she saw that I could not compose myself. Of all
forms of death that by the hands of savages is the most difficult to
face calmly, and I fully believed that our hour was come.

There was no interruption to the dance, which the Indians carried on
in the parlor, leaping and yelling as if they would bring down the
roof over our heads. In vain we tried to persuade my husband and the
children, through a crevice of the door, to come and join us. The
latter, feeling no danger, were too much delighted with the exhibition
to leave it, and the former only came for a moment to reassure me, and
then judged it wisest to return, and manifest his satisfaction at the
compliment by his presence. He made light of our fears, and would not
admit that the object of our suspicions was in fact a Sauk, but only
some young Winnebago, who had, as is sometimes the custom, imitated
them in costume and appearance.

It may have been "good fun" to him to return to his village and
tell how he frightened "the white squaws." Such a trick would not
be unnatural in a white youth, and perhaps, since human nature is
everywhere the same, it might not be out of the way in an Indian.



The danger now appeared to have become so imminent that my husband
determined to send his family to Fort Howard, a point which was
believed to be far out of the range of the enemy. It was in vain that I
pleaded to be permitted to remain--he was firm.

"I must not leave my post," said he, "while there is any danger. My
departure would perhaps be the signal for an immediate alliance of the
Winnebagoes with the Sauks. I am certain that as long as I am here,
my presence will act as a restraint upon them. You wish to remain
and share my dangers! Your doing so would expose us both to certain
destruction in case of attack. By the aid of my friends in both tribes,
I could hope to preserve my own life if I were alone, but surrounded
by my family, that would be impossible--we should all fall victims
together. My duty plainly is to send you to a place of safety."

An opportunity for doing this soon occurred. Paquette, the interpreter,
who was likewise an agent of the American Fur Company, had occasion
to send a boat load of furs to Green Bay, on their way to Mackinac.
Mr. Kinzie having seen it as comfortably fitted up as an open boat of
that description could be, with a tent-cloth fastened on a framework
of hoop-poles over the centre, and lined with a dark-green blanket;
and having placed on board an abundant store of provisions and other
comforts, he committed us to the joint care of my brother Arthur and
his faithful blacksmith, Mâtâ.

This latter was a tall, gaunt Frenchman, with a freckled face, a
profusion of crisp, sandy hair, and an inveterate propensity to speak
English. His knowledge of the language was somewhat limited, and he
burlesqued it by adding an _s_ to almost every word, and giving out
each phrase with a jerk.

"Davids," he was wont to say to the little yellow fiddler, after an
evening's frolic at the Interpreter's, "Davids, clear away the tables
and the glasses, and play _fishes hornspikes_."[BA] But he was a kind,
affectionate creature, and his devotion to "Monsieur Johns" and "Madame
Johns" knew no bounds.

[Footnote BA: Fisher's hornpipe.]

Besides these two protectors, three trusty Indians, the chief of whom
was called _Old Smoker_, were engaged to escort our party. The crew of
the boat consisted entirely of French engagés in the service of the Fur
Company. They were six gay-hearted, merry fellows, lightening their
labor with their pipe and their songs, in which they always esteemed it
a great compliment to be joined by any gentleman or lady who listened
to them--but our hearts, alas! were now too heavy to participate in
their enjoyment.

The Fourth of July, the day on which we left our home, was a gloomy one
indeed to those who departed, and to the one left behind. Who knew if
we should ever meet again? The experience which some of the circle had
had in Indian warfare, was such as to justify the saddest forebodings.
There was not even the consolation of a certainty that this step
would secure our safety. The Sauks might, possibly, be on the other
side of us, and the route we were taking might, perhaps, though not
probably, carry us into their very midst. It was no wonder then that
our leave-taking was a solemn one--a parting which all felt might be
for this world.

Not _all_, however, for the gay, cheerful Frenchmen laughed and sung
and cracked their jokes, and "assured Monsieur John that they would
take Madame Jolm and Madame Alum safe to '_the bay_,' spite of Sauks or
wind or weather."

Thus we sat out on our journey. For many miles the fort was in sight,
as the course of the river alternately approached and receded from its
walls, and it was not until nearly mid-day that we caught the last
glimpse of our home.

At the noon-tide meal, or "pipe,"[104] as it is called by the
voyageurs, an alarming discovery was made--no bread had been put on
board for the crew! How this oversight had occurred, no one could
tell. One was certain that a large quantity had been brought from the
garrison bakery for their use that very morning--another had even seen
the sacks of loaves standing in Paquette's kitchen. Be that as it
may, here we were, many miles on our journey, and with no provisions
for the six Frenchmen, except some salted pork, a few beans, and
some onions. A consultation was held in this emergency. Should they
return to the Portage for supplies? The same danger that made their
departure necessary, still existed, and the utmost dispatch had been
enjoined upon them. We found upon examination that the store of bread
and crackers with which our party had been provided, was far beyond
what we could possibly require, and we thought it would be sufficient
to allow of rations to the Frenchmen until we should reach Powell's,
at the Butte des Morts, the day but one following, where we should
undoubtedly be able to procure a fresh supply.

This decided on, we proceeded on our journey, always in profound
silence, for a song or a loud laugh was now strictly prohibited until
we should have passed the utmost limits of country where the enemy
might possibly be. We had been warned beforehand that a certain point,
where the low marshy meadows, through which the river had hitherto run,
rises into a more firm and elevated country, was the border of the
Menomonee territory, and the spot where the Sauks, if they had fled
north of the Wisconsin towards the Chippewa country, would be most
likely to be encountered.

As we received intimation on the forenoon of the second day that we
were drawing near this spot, I must confess that "we held our breath
for awe."

The three Winnebagoes were in the bow of the boat. Old Smoker, the
chief, squatted upon his feet on the bench of the foremost rowers. We
looked at him. He was gazing intently in the direction of the wooded
point we were approaching. Our eyes followed his, and we saw three
Indians step forward and stand upon the bank. We said in a low voice to
each other, "if they are Sauks, we are lost, for the whole body must
be in that thicket." The boat continued to approach--not a word was
spoken--the dip of the paddle, and perhaps the beating hearts of some,
were the only sounds that broke the stillness. Again we looked at the
chief. His nostrils were dilated--his eyes almost glaring.

Suddenly, with a bound, he sprung to his feet and uttered his long
shrill whoop.

"Hoh! hoh! hoh! neetchee (friend) _Mah-no-mo-nee!_"

All was now joy and gladness. Every one was forward to shake hands
with the strangers as soon as we could reach them, in token of our
satisfaction that they were Menomonees and not Sauks, of the latter of
whom, by the way, they would give us no intelligence.

By noon of that day, we considered ourselves to be out of the region
of danger. Still caution was deemed necessary, and when at the mid-day
pipe the boat was pushed ashore under a beautiful overhanging bank,
crowned with a thick wood, the usual vigilance was somewhat relaxed,
and the young people, under the escort of Arthur and Mâtâ were
permitted to roam about a little, in the vicinity of the boat.

They soon came back with the report that the woods were "alive with
pigeons,"[105]--they could almost knock them down with sticks, and
earnestly did they plead to be allowed to shoot at least enough for
supper. But no--the enemy might be nearer than we imagined, the firing
of a gun would betray our whereabouts--it was most prudent to give no
notice to friend or foe. So, very reluctantly, they were compelled to
return to the boat without their game.

The next morning brought us to Powell's, at the Butte des Morts.
Sad were the faces of the poor Frenchmen at learning that not a
loaf of bread was to be had. Our own store, too, was, by this time,
quite exhausted. The only substitute we could obtain, was a bag of
dark-looking, bitter flour. With this provision for our whole party,
we were forced to be contented, and we left the Hillock of the Dead
feeling that it had been indeed the grave of our hopes.

By dint of good rowing, our crew soon brought us to the spot where the
river enters that beautiful sheet of water, Winnebago Lake. Though
there was but little wind when we reached the lake, the Frenchmen
hoisted their sail, in hopes to save themselves the labour of rowing
across; but in vain did they whistle, with all the force of their
lungs--in vain did they supplicate _La Vierge_, with a comical mixture
of fun and reverence. As a last resource, it was at length suggested by
some one that their only chance lay in propitiating the goddess of the
winds with an offering of some cast-off garment.

Application was made all round by Guardapie, the chief spokesman of the
crew. Alas! not one of the poor voyageurs could boast a spare article.
A few old rags were at length rummaged out of the little receptacle of
food, clothing, and dirt, in the bow of the boat, and cast into the
waves. For a moment all flattered themselves that the experiment had
been successful--the sail fluttered, swelled a little, and then flapped
idly down against the mast. The party were in despair, until, after a
whispered consultation together, Julian and Edwin stepped forward as
messengers of mercy. In a trice they divested themselves of jacket and
vest and made a proffer of their next garment to aid in raising the

At first there seemed a doubt in the minds of the boatmen whether they
ought to accept so magnificent an offer, but finding, on giving them
a preparatory shake, that the value of the contribution was less than
they had imagined, they, with many shouts, and much laughter, consigned
them to the waves. To the great delight and astonishment of the boys,
a breeze at this moment sprung up, which carried the little vessel
beautifully over the waters for about half the distance to Garlic
Island. By this time the charm was exhausted, nor was it found possible
to renew it by a repetition of similar offerings. All expedients
were tried without success, and, with sundry rather disrespectful
reflections upon the lady whose aid they had invoked, the Frenchmen
were compelled to betake themselves to their oars, until they reached
the island.

Two or three canoes of Winnebagoes had arrived at the same moment,
and their owners immediately stepped forward with an offering of some
sturgeon which they had caught in the lake. As this promised to be an
agreeable variety to the noon-tide meal, (at least for the Frenchmen,)
it was decided to stop and kindle a fire for the purpose of cooking it.
We took advantage of this interval, to recommend to the boys to stroll
to the opposite side of the island, where the clear, shallow water
and pebbly beach offered temptation to a refreshing bath. While they
availed themselves of this, under the supervision of Harry, the black
boy, we amused ourselves with gathering the fine red raspberries with
which the island abounded.

Our enjoyment was cut short, however, by discovering that the whole
place, vines, shrubs, and even, apparently, the earth itself, was
infested with myriads of the wood-tick, a little insect, that, having
fastened to the skin, penetrates into the very flesh, causing a
swelling and irritation exceedingly painful, and even dangerous. The
alarm was sounded to bring the boys back in all haste, to the open
and more frequented part of the island. But we soon found we had not
left our tormentors behind. Throughout the day, we continued to be
sensible of their proximity. From the effects of their attacks we were
not relieved for several succeeding days; those which had succeeded in
burying themselves in the flesh, having to be removed with the point
of a penknife, or a large needle. After partaking of our dinner, we
stepped on board our boat, and the wind having risen, we were carried
by the breeze to the opposite verge of the lake, and into the entrance
of the river, or, as it was called, the Winnebago rapids.

On the point of land to the right stood a collection of neat bark
wigwams--this was Four-Legs' village.

It was an exciting and somewhat hazardous passage down the rapids
and over the Grande Chûte, a fall of several feet; but it was safely
passed, and at the approach of evening the boat reached the settlement
of the Wau-bee-na-kees at the head of the Little Chûte. These are the
Stockbridge or Brothertown Indians, the remains of the old Mohicans,
who had, a few years before, emigrated from Oneida County in the State
of New York, to a tract granted them by the United States, on the
fertile banks of the Fox River.[106] They had already cleared extensive
openings in the forest, and built some substantial and comfortable
houses near the banks of the river, which were here quite high, and
covered for the most part with gigantic trees.

It was determined to ask hospitality of these people, to the extent
of borrowing a corner of their fire to boil our tea kettle, and bake
the short-cake which had been now, for nearly two days, our substitute
for bread. Its manufacture had been a subject of much merriment. The
ingredients, consisting of Powell's black flour, some salt and a little
butter, were mixed in the tin box which had held our meat. This was
then reversed, and having been properly cleansed, supplied the place
of a dough-board. The vinegar bottle served the office of rolling-pin,
and a shallow tin dish, set upon the coals at our previous encamping
places, had formed the appliance for baking. The Wau-bee-na-kees were
so good as to lend us an iron bake-kettle, and superintend the cooking
of our cake after Harry had carried it up to their dwelling.

So kind and hospitable did they show themselves, that the crew of
the boat took the resolution of asking a lodging on shore, by way of
relief, after their crowded quarters in the boat for the last three
nights. Arthur and Mâtâ soon adopted the same idea, and we were invited
to follow their example, with the assurance that the houses were
extremely neat and orderly.

We preferred, however, at it was a fine night, and all things were so
comfortably arranged in the centre of the boat, to remain on board,
keeping Edwin and Josette with us.

The boat was tightly moored, for the Little Chûte was just below, and
if our craft should work loose in the rapid current, and drift down
over the falls, it would be a very serious matter. As an additional
precaution, one man was left on board to keep all things safe and in
order, and these arrangements having been made, the others ascended the
bank, and took up their night's lodgings in the Wau-bee-na-kee cabins.

It was a beautiful, calm, moonlight night, the air just sufficiently
warm to be agreeable, while the gentle murmur of the rapids and of the
fall at no great distance, soon lulled our party to repose. How long we
had slumbered we knew not, when we were aroused by a rushing wind. It
bent the poles supporting the awning, snapped them, and another gust
succeeding, tent and blanket were carried away on the blast down the
stream. The moonlight was gone, but a flash of lightning showed them
sailing away like a spectre in the distance.

The storm increased in violence. The rain began to pour in torrents,
and the thunder and lightning to succeed each other in fearful
rapidity. My sister sprang to waken the Frenchman. "Get up Vitelle,
quick," cried she, in French, "run up the bank for Mâtâ and Mr.
Arthur--tell them to come and get us instantly."

The man made her no reply, but fell upon his knees, invoking the Virgin
most vociferously.

"Do not wait for the Virgin, but go as quickly as possible. Do you not
see we shall all be killed?"

"Oh! not for the world, Madame, not for the world," said Vitelle,
burying his head in a pack of furs, "would I go up that bank in this
storm." And here he began crying most lustily to all the saints in the

It was indeed awful. The roaring of the thunder and the flashing of the
lightning around us, were like the continued discharge of a park of
artillery. I had with difficulty drawn forth my cloak, and enveloped
myself and Josette--sister Margaret had done the same with Edwin.

"Oh! Madame," said the poor little girl, her teeth chattering with cold
and fright, "won't we be drowned?"

"Very well," said my sister to the Frenchman, "you see that Madame John
is at the last agony--if you will not go for help I must, and Monsieur
John must know that you left his wife to perish."

This was too much for Vitelle. "If I must, I must," said he, and with a
desperate bound he leapt on shore and sped up the hill with might and

In a few minutes, though it seemed ages to us, a whole posse came
flying down the hill. The incessant lightning made all things appear
as in the glare of day. Mâtâ's hair fairly stood on end, and his eyes
rolled with ghastly astonishment at the spectacle.

"Oh! my God, Madame Johns! what would Monsieur Johns say, to see you
nows?" exclaimed he, as he seized me in his arms and bore me up the
hill. Arthur followed with sister Margaret, and two others with Edwin
and Josette. Nobody carried Vitelle, for he had taken care not to risk
his precious life by venturing again to the boat.

On arriving at the cabin where Arthur and Mâtâ had been lodged, a fire
was, with some difficulty, kindled, and our trunks having been brought
up from the boat, we were at length able to exchange our drenched
garments, and those of the children, for others more comfortable, after
which we laid ourselves upon the clean, but homely bed, and slept until

As it was necessary to ascertain what degree of damage the cargo of
furs had sustained, an early start was proposed. Apparently, the
inhabitants of the cottages had become weary in well doing, for they
declined preparing breakfast for us, although we assured them they
should be well compensated for their trouble. We, consequently, saw
ourselves compelled to depart with very slender prospects of a morning

When we reached the boat, what a scene presented itself! Bed-clothes,
cloaks, trunks, mess-basket, packs of furs, all bearing the marks of a
complete deluge! The boat ankle-deep in water--literally no place on
board where we could either stand or sit. After some bailing out, and
an attempt at disposing some of the packs of furs, which had suffered
least from the flood, so as to form a sort of divan in the centre of
the boat, nothing better seemed to offer than to re-embark, and endure
what "could not be cured."

Our position was not an enviable one. Wherever a foot or hand was
placed, the water gushed up, with a bubbling sound, and, oh! the state
of the bandboxes and work-baskets! Breakfast there was none, for on
examining the mess-basket everything it contained was found mingled in
one undistinguishable mass. Tea, pepper, salt, short-cake, all floating
together--it was a hopeless case.

But this was not the worst. As the fervid July sun rose higher in the
heavens, the steam which exhaled from every object on board was nearly
suffocating. The boat was old--the packs of skins were old--their
vicinity in a dry day had been anything but agreeable--now, it was
intolerable. There was no retreating from it, however, so we encouraged
the children to arm themselves with patience, for the short time that
yet remained of our voyage.

Seated on our odoriferous couch, beneath the shade of a single
umbrella, to protect our whole party from the scorching sun, we glided
wearily down the stream, through that long, tedious day. As we passed
successively the Kakalin, the Rapids, Dickinson's, the Agency, with
what longing eyes did we gaze at human habitations, where others were
enjoying the shelter of a roof, and the comforts of food, and how
eagerly did we count the hours which must elapse before we could reach
Fort Howard.

There were no songs from the poor Frenchmen this day. Music and fasting
do not go well together. At length we stopped at Shanteetown,[107]
where the boat was to be unloaded. All hands fell to work to transfer
the cargo to the warehouse of the Fur Company, which stood near the
landing. It was not a long operation, for all worked heartily. This
being accomplished, the voyageurs, one and all, prepared to take their
leave. In vain Mâtâ stormed and raved, in vain Arthur remonstrated.

"No," they said, "they had brought the boat and cargo to the
warehouse--that was all of their job," and they turned to go.

"Guardapie," said I, "do you intend to leave us here?"

"Bien, Madame! it is the place we always stop at."

"Does Monsieur John pay you for bringing his family down?"

"Oh, yes; Monsieur John has given us an order on the sutler, at the
fort down below."

"To be paid when you deliver us safe at the fort down below. It seems
I shall be there before you, and I shall arrange that matter. Monsieur
John never dreamed that this would be your conduct."

The Frenchmen consulted together, and the result was that Guardapie and
two others jumped into the boat, took their oars, and rather sulkily
rowed us the remaining two miles to Fort Howard.



We soon learned that a great panic prevailed at Green Bay on account
of the Sauks.[108] The people seemed to have possessed themselves with
the idea that the enemy would visit this place on their way to Canada
to put themselves under the protection of the British Government. How
they were to get there from this point--whether they were to stop and
fabricate themselves bark canoes for the purpose, or whether they were
to charter one of Mr. Newberry's schooners for the trip, the good
people did not seem fully to have made up their minds. One thing is
certain, a portion of the citizens were nearly frightened to death, and
were fully convinced that there was no safety for them, but within the
walls of the old dilapidated fort, from which nearly all the troops had
been withdrawn and sent to Fort Winnebago, some time previous.

Their fears were greatly aggravated by a report, brought by some
traveller, that he had slept at night on the very spot where the Sauks
breakfasted the next morning. Now, as the Sauks were known to be
reduced to very short commons, there was every reason to suppose that
if the man had waited half an hour longer, they would have eaten him;
so he was considered to have made a wonderful escape.

Our immediate friends and acquaintances were far from joining in these
fears. The utter improbability of such a movement was obvious to all
who considered the nature of the country to be traversed, and the
efficient and numerous body of whites by whom they must be opposed on
their entrance into that neighborhood. There were some, however, who
could not be persuaded that there was even any security but in flight,
and eagerly was the arrival of the "Mariner" looked for, as the anxiety
grew more and more intense.

The "Mariner" appeared at last. It was early in the morning. In one
hour from that time, the fearful news she brought had spread the
whole length of "the bay." The cholera was in this country! It was in
Detroit--it was among the troops who were on their way to the seat of
war! Whole companies had died of it in the river St. Clair, and the
survivors had been put on shore at Fort Gratiot, to save their lives as
best they might! We were shut in between the savage foe on one hand and
the pestilence on the other![109]

To those who had friends "at the East," the news was most appalling. It
seemed to unman every one who heard it. A relative, an officer who had
exhibited the most distinguished courage in the battle-field, and also
in some private enterprises demanding unequalled courage and daring,
was the first to bring us the news. When he had communicated it, he
laid his head against the window sill and wept like a child.

Those who wished to rejoin friends near and dear, left "the bay" in the
"Mariner"; all others considered their present home the safest, and so
it proved, for the dreadful scourge did not visit Green Bay that season.

The weather was intensely hot, and the musquitoes so thick that we
did not pretend to walk on the parade after sunset, unless armed with
two fans, or green branches to keep constantly in motion, in order to
disperse them. This, by the way, was the surest method of attracting
them. We had somehow forgotten the apathetic indifference which had
often excited our wonder in old Smoker, when we had observed him calmly
sitting and allowing his naked arms and person to become literally
_gray_ with the tormenting insects. Then he would quietly wipe off a
handful, the blood following the movement of the hand over his skin,
and stoically wait for an occasion to repeat the movement. It is said
that the mosquito, if undisturbed until he has taken his fill, leaves a
much less inflamed bite than if brushed away in the midst of his feast.

By day, the air was at this season filled with what is called the
Green Bay fly, a species of dragon-fly, with which the outer walls
of the houses are at times so covered that their color is hardly
distinguishable. Their existence is very ephemeral, scarcely lasting
more than a day. Their dead bodies are seen adhering to the walls and
windows within, and they fall without in such numbers that after a high
wind has gathered them into rows along the sides of the quarters, one
may walk through them and toss them up with their feet like the dry
leaves in autumn.

As we walked across the parade, our attention was sometimes called
to a tapping upon the bars of the dungeon in which a criminal was
confined--it was the murderer of Lieutenant Foster.

It may be remembered that this amiable young officer had been our
travelling companion in our journey from Chicago the preceding year.
Some months after his arrival at Fort Howard, he had occasion to
order a soldier of his company, named Doyle, into confinement for
intoxication. The man, a few days afterward, prevailed on the Sergeant
of the Guard to escort him to Lieutenant Foster's quarters on the plea
that he wished to speak to him. He ascended the stairs to the young
officer's room, while the sergeant and another soldier remained at the
foot, near the door.

Doyle entered, and addressing Lieutenant Foster, said, "Will you please
tell me. Lieutenant, what I am confined for?"

"No, sir," replied the officer, "you know your offence well enough;
return to your place of confinement."

The man ran down stairs, wrenched the gun from the sergeant's hand, and
rushing back, discharged it at the heart of Lieutenant Foster.

He turned to go to his inner apartment, but exclaiming, "Ah! me," he
fell dead before the entrance.

Doyle, having been tried by a civil court, was now under sentence,
awaiting his execution. He was a hardened villain, never exhibiting the
slightest compunction for his crime.

The commanding officer. Major Clark,[110] sent to him one day to
inquire if he wanted anything for his comfort.

"If the Major pleased," he replied, "he should like to have a light and
a copy of Byron's Works."

Some fears were entertained that he would contrive to make way with
himself before the day of execution, and to guard against it, he was
deprived of everything that could furnish him a weapon. His food was
served to him in a wooden bowl, lest a bit of broken crockery might be
used as a means of self-destruction.

One morning he sent a little package to the commanding officer as a
present. It contained a strong rope, fabricated from strips of his
blanket, that he had carefully separated, and with a large stout spike
at the end of it. The message accompanying it was: "He wished Major
Clark to see that if he chose to put an end to himself, he could find
means to do it in spite of him."

And this hardened frame of mind continued to the last. When he was led
out for execution, in passing beyond the gate, he observed a quantity
of lumber recently collected for the construction of a new Company's

"Ah! Captain, what are you going to build here?" inquired he of Captain
Scott,[111] who attended him.

"Doyle," replied his Captain, "you have but a few moments to live--you
had better employ your thoughts about something else."

"It is for that very reason, Captain," said he, "that I am
enquiring--as my time is short, I wish to gain all the information I
can while it lasts."

       *       *       *       *       *

We were not suffered to remain long in suspense in regard to the
friends we had left behind. In less than two weeks _Old Smoker_ again
made his appearance. He was the bearer of letters from my husband,
informing me that Gen. Dodge was then with him at Fort Winnebago--that
Generals Henry and Alexander[112] were likewise at the fort, and that
as soon as they had recruited their men and horses, which were pretty
well worn out with scouring the country after Black Hawk, they would
march again in pursuit of him towards the head waters of the Rock
river, where they had every reason, from information lately brought in
by the Winnebagoes, to believe he would be found.

As he charged us to lay aside all uneasiness on his account, and
moreover held forth the hope of soon coming or sending for us, our
minds became more tranquil.

Not long after this, I was told one morning, that "_a lady_" wished to
see me at the front door. I obeyed the summons, and, to my surprise,
was greeted by my friend, _Madame Four-Legs_. After much demonstration
of joy at seeing me, such as putting her two hands together over her
forehead, and then parting them in a waving kind of gesture--laughing
and patting me on my arms, she drew from her bosom a letter from my
husband, of which she was the bearer, to this effect--"Generals Dodge
and Henry left here a few days since, accompanied by Paquette; they met
the Sauks near the Wisconsin, on the 21st. A battle ensued in which
upwards of fifty of the enemy were killed--our loss was one killed,
and eight wounded. The _citizens_ are well pleased that all this has
been accomplished without any aid from _Old White Beaver_.[BB] The war
must be near its close, for the militia and regulars together will soon
finish the remaining handful of fugitives."

[Footnote BB: General Atkinson.]

The arrival of Lieut. Hunter, who had obtained leave of absence in
order to escort us, soon put all things in train for our return to Fort
Winnebago. No Mackinac boat was to be had, but in lieu of it a Durham
boat was procured. This is of a description longer and shallower than
the other, with no convenience for rigging up an awning, or shelter of
any kind over the centre; but its size was better fitted to accommodate
our party, which consisted of Mr. and Mrs. H., the wife of another
officer now stationed at Fort Winnebago, and our cousin. Miss Forsyth,
in addition to our own immediate family. We made up our minds, as will
be supposed, to pretty close quarters.

Our crew was composed partly of Frenchmen, and partly of soldiers, and
all things being in readiness, we set off one fine, bright morning, in
the latter part of July.

Our second day's rowing and poling brought us to the Grande Chûte[113]
early in the afternoon.

Here, it is the custom to disembark at the foot of the rapids, and,
ascending the high bank, walk around the fall, while the men pull the
boat up, through the foaming waters.

Most of our party had already stepped on shore, when a sudden thought
seized one of the ladies and myself.

"Let us stay in the boat," said we, "and be pulled up the Chûte."
The rest of the company went on, while we sat and watched with great
interest the preparations the men were making. They were soon overboard
in the water, and attaching a strong rope to the bow of the boat, all
lent their aid in pulling as they marched slowly along with their heavy
load. The cargo, consisting only of our trunks and stores, which were
of no very considerable weight, had not been removed.

We went on, now and then getting a tremendous bump against a hidden
rock, and frequently splashed by a shower of foam as the waves roared
and boiled around us.

The men kept as closely as possible to the high, precipitous bank,
where the water was smoothest. At the head of the _cordel_ was a merry
simpleton of a Frenchman, who was constantly turning to grin with
delight at our evident enjoyment and excitement.

We were indeed in high glee. "Is not this charming?" cried one--"I only

The wish, whatever it was, was cut short by a shout and a crash. "Have
a care, Robineau! Mind where you are taking the boat!" was the cry, but
it came too late. More occupied with the ladies than with his duty, the
leader had guided us into the midst of a sharp, projecting tree that
hung from the bank. The first tug ripped out the side of the boat,
which immediately began to fill with water.

My companion and I jumped upon the nearest rocks that showed their
heads above the foam. Our screams and the shouts of the men brought
Lieut. Hunter and some Indians, who were above on the bank, dashing
down to our rescue. They carried us in their arms to land, while
the men worked lustily at fishing up the contents of the boat, now
thoroughly saturated with water.

We scrambled up the high bank, in a miserable plight, to join in the
general lamentation over the probable consequences of the accident.

"Oh! my husband's new uniform!" cried one, and

"Oh! the miniatures in the bottom of my trunk!" sighed another--while,
"Oh! the silk dresses, and the ribbons, and the finery," formed the
general chorus.

No one thought of the provisions, although we had observed in our
progress to shore, the barrel of bread and the tub of ice, which Lieut.
Hunter had providently brought for our refreshment, sailing away on
the dancing waves. Among the boxes brought to land, and "toted" up the
steep bank, was one containing some loaves of sugar and packages of
tea, which I had bought for our winter's supply, from the sutler at
the post. The young Indian, who was the bearer of it, set it upon the
ground, and soon called my attention to a thick, white stream that was
oozing from the corners. I made signs for him to taste it. He dipped
his finger in it, and exclaimed with delight to his companions, when he
perceived what it was. I then pointed to his hatchet, and motioned him
to open the box. He did not require a second invitation--it was soon
hacked to pieces.


From a sketch by Mrs. Kinzie, in original edition.]

Then, as I beckoned up all the rest of the youngsters who were looking
on, full of wonder, such a scrambling and shouting with delight
succeeded as put us all, particularly the boys, into fits of laughter.
Bowls, dippers, hands, everything that could contain even the smallest
quantity were put in requisition. The squaws were most active. Those
who could do no better, took the stoutest fragments of the blue paper
in which the sugar had been enveloped, and in a trice, nothing remained
but the wet, yellow bundles of tea, and the fragments of the splintered
box which had contained it.

By this time, fires had been made, and the articles from the trunks
were soon seen covering every shrub and bush in the vicinity.
Fortunately, that containing the "new uniform," had been piled high
above the others, in the centre of the boat, and had received but
little damage, but sad was the condition of the wardrobes in general.

Not a white article was to be seen. All was mottled, blue-green, red,
and black, intermingling in streaks, and dripping from ends and corners.

To add to the trouble, the rain began to fall, as rain is apt to do, in
a wild, unsheltered country, and soon the half-dried garments had to
be gathered out of the smoke, and huddled away in a most discouraging

The tent was pitched, wet as it was, and the blankets, wrung out of
the water, and partially dried, were spread upon the ground for our
accommodation at night.

A Hamburgh cheese which had been a part of my stores, was voted to
me for a pillow, and, after a supper, the best part of which, was a
portion of one of the wet loaves which had remained in a barrel too
tightly wedged to drift away, we betook ourselves to our repose.

The next morning rose hot and sultry. The musquitoes, which the rain
had kept at bay through the night, now began to make themselves amends,
and to torment us unmercifully.

After our most uncomfortable and unpalatable breakfast, the first
question for consideration was, what we were to do with ourselves. Our
boat lay submerged at the foot of the hill, half way up the rapids. The
nearest habitation among the Wabeenakees was some miles distant, and
this there was no means of reaching, but by an Indian canoe, if some
of our present friends and neighbors would be so obliging as to bring
one for our use. Even then it was doubtful if boats could be found
sufficient to convey all our numerous party back to Green Bay.

In the midst of these consultations a whoop was heard from beyond the
hill, which here sloped away to the north, at the head of the rapids.

"There is John! that is certainly his voice!" cried more than one of
the company.

It was, indeed, my husband, and in a moment he was amongst us. Never
was arrival more opportune, more evidently providential.

Not having learned our plans, for the unsettled state of the country
had prevented our sending him word, he had come provided with a boat,
to take us to Fort Winnebago.

Our drying operations, which we had recommenced this morning, were soon
cut short. Everything was shuffled away in the most expeditious manner
possible, and in an incredibly short time we were transferred to the
other boat, which lay quietly above the Chûte, and were pulling away
towards Winnebago Lake.

We had resolved to go only so far as the vicinity of the lake, where
the breeze would render the musquitoes less intolerable, and then to
stop and make one more attempt at drying our clothing. Accordingly,
when we reached a beautiful high bank near the Little Butte, we stopped
for that purpose again, unpacked our trunks, and soon every bush and
twig was fluttering with the spoils of the cruel waves.

Hardly had we thus disposed of the last rag, or ribbon, when the tramp
of horses was heard, followed by loud shouts and cheers ringing through
the forest.

A company of about twenty-five horsemen, with banners flying, veils
fluttering from their hats, and arms glittering in the sun, rode into
our midst, and amid greetings and roars of laughter, inquired into the
nature and reasons of our singular state of confusion.

They were Colonel Stambaugh and Alexander Irwin of Green Bay, with
a company of young volunteers, and followed by a whooping band of
Menomonees, all bound for the seat of war.[114] We comforted them
with the assurance that the victories were by this time all won, and
the scalps taken; but, expressing the hope that there were yet a few
laurels to be earned, they bade us adieu, and rapidly pursued their

We crossed Lake Winnebago by the clear beautiful light of a summer
moon. The soft air was just enough to swell the sail, and thus save the
men their labor at the oar.

The witchery of the hour was not, however, sufficient to induce us
to forego our repose after the heat and annoyances of the day--we
therefore disposed ourselves betimes to be packed away in the centre of
the boat. How it was accomplished, no one of the numerous company could
tell. If any accident had occurred to disturb our arrangement, I am
sure it would have been a Chinese puzzle to put us back again in our
places. The men on the outside had much the best of it, and we rather
envied those who were off watch their ability to snore and change as
the humor took them.

We reached Powell's just in time to have gone ashore and prepare our
breakfast, had we had wherewithal to prepare it. We had hoped to be
able to procure some supplies here, for hitherto we had been living
on the remains of my husband's ample stock. That was now so nearly
exhausted that when we found the mess-basket could not be replenished
at this place, we began to talk of putting ourselves on allowance.

The wet bread, of which there had remained an ample store, had, as
may be readily imagined, soon fermented under the influence of a July
sun. The tea, too, notwithstanding our careful efforts at drying it on
newspapers and pieces of board, ere long became musty and unfit for
use. There was, literally, nothing left, except the sotted meat, and a
few crackers, hardly sufficient for the present day.

The men were therefore urged to make all the speed possible, that we
might reach Gleason's at Lake Puckway in good season on the following

At evening, when we stopped to take our tea at a beautiful little
opening among the trees, we found our old enemies the musquitoes worse
than ever. It was necessary to put on our cloaks and gloves, and tie
our veils close around our throats, only venturing to introduce a
cracker or a cup of tea under this protection in the most stealthy

The men rowed well, and brought us to Gleason's about eleven
o'clock the next day. We were greeted with the most enthusiastic
demonstrations by my old friend _La Grosse Americaine_ who had removed
here from Bellefontaine.

"Oh! Mrs. Armstrong," cried we, "get us some breakfast--we are

At that instant who should appear but our faithful Mâtâ, driving the
little old calash in which we were in the habit of making our little
excursions in the neighborhood of the fort. He had ridden over, hoping
to meet us, in the idea that some of us would prefer this method of
reaching our home.

With provident thoughtfulness he had brought tea, roasted coffee, fresh
butter, eggs, etc., lest we should be short of such luxuries in that
advanced stage of our journey.

His "Good morning, Madame Johns! How do you dos?" was a pleasant and
welcome sound.

We could not wait for our breakfast, but gathered round La Grosse
Americaine like a parcel of children while she cut and spread slices of
bread and butter for us.

After our regular meal was finished it was decided that sister Margaret
should take Josette and return with Mats to open the house and make
it ready for our reception. It had been the headquarters of militia,
Indians, and stragglers of various descriptions during our absence, and
we could easily imagine that a little "misrule and unreason" might have
had sway for that period.

We had yet seventy-two miles, by the devious winding course of the
river, over first the beautiful waters of Lac de Bœuf, and then
through the low marshy lands that spread away to the Portage. An
attempt was made on the part of one of the gentlemen to create a little
excitement among the ladies as we approached the spot where it had
been supposed the Sauks might pass on their way to the Chippewa country.

"Who knows," said he gravely, "but they may be lurking in this
neighborhood--yet if so, we shall probably have some signal--we must
be on the alert!" Some of the ladies began to turn pale and look about
them. After an interval of perfect silence, a low prolonged whistle
was heard. There was so much agitation, and actual terror, that the
mischievous author of the trick was obliged to confess at once, and
receive a hearty scolding for the pain he had caused.

Just before sunset of the second day from Gleason's we reached our
home. Everything was _radiant_ with neatness and good order. With the
efficient aid of our good Manaigre and his wife the house had been
white-washed from the roof to the door sill--a thorough scrubbing and
cleansing effected--the carpets unpacked and spread upon the floors,
the furniture arranged, and though last not least, a noble supper
smoked upon the board by the time we had made, once more, a civilized

Many of our friends from the fort were there to greet us, and a more
happy or thankful party has seldom been assembled.



The war was now considered at an end. The news of the battle of the
Bad Axe, where the regulars, the militia, and the Steamboat Warrior
combined, had made a final end of the remaining handful of Sauks,[115]
had reached us and restored tranquillity to the hearts and homes of the
frontier settlers.

It may seem wonderful that an enemy, so few in number, and so
insignificant in resources, could have created such a panic, and
required so vast an amount of opposing force to subdue them. The
difficulty had been simply in never knowing where to find them, either
to attack or guard against them. Probably at the outset every military
man thought and felt like the noble old veteran General Brady,[116]
"Give me two Infantry companies mounted," said he, "and I will engage
to whip the Sauks out of the country in one week!"

True, but to whip the enemy, you must first meet him; and in order to
pursue effectually, and _catch_ the Indians, a peculiar training is
necessary--a training which, at that day, but few, even of the frontier
militia, could boast.

In some portions of this campaign there was another difficulty. The
want of concert between the two branches of the service. The regular
troops looked with some contempt upon the unprofessional movements
of the militia--the militia railed at the dilatory and useless
formalities of the regulars. Each avowed the conviction that matters
could be much better conducted without the other, and the militia being
prompt to act, sometimes took matters into their own hands, and brought
on defeat and disgrace, as in the affair of "Stillman's Run."[117]

The feeling of contempt which some of the army officers entertained
for the militia, extended itself to their subordinates and dependents.
After the visit of the Ranger officers to Fort Winnebago, before the
battle of the Wisconsin, the officer of the mess where they had been
entertained, called up his servant one day to inquire into the Sutler's
accounts. He was the same little "Yellow David" who had formerly
appertained to Captain Harney.

"David," said the young gentleman, "I see three bottles of
cologne-water charged in the month's account of the mess at the
Sutler's. What does that mean?"

"If you please, Lieutenant," said David respectfully, "it was to
sweeten up the dining-room and quarters, after them milish officers
were here visiting."

Black Hawk and a few of his warriors had escaped to the north, where
they were shortly after captured by the One-eyed Day-kay-ray and
his party, and brought prisoners to General Street at Prairie du
Chien.[118] The women and children of the band had been put in canoes
and sent down the Mississippi, in hopes of being permitted to cross and
reach the rest of their tribe.

The canoes had been tied together, and many of them had been upset,
and the children drowned, their mothers being too weak and exhausted
to rescue them. The survivors were taken prisoners, and starving and
miserable, they were brought to Prairie du Chien. Our mother was at the
fort at the time of their arrival. She described their condition as
wretched and reduced, beyond anything she had ever witnessed. One woman
who spoke a little Chippewa gave her an account of the sufferings and
hardships they had endured--it was truly appalling.

[Illustration: BLACK HAWK.

(Head-man of the Rock River Sacs.) From oil portrait by R. M. Sully, in
possession of Wisconsin Historical Society.]

After having eaten such of the horses as could be spared they had
subsisted on acorns, elm-bark, or even grass. Many had died of
starvation, and their bodies had been found lying in their trail by
the pursuing whites. This poor woman had lost her husband in battle,
and all her children by the upsetting of the canoe in which they were,
and her only wish now was, to go and join them. Poor Indians! who can
wonder that they do not love the whites?

But a very short time had we been quietly at home, when a summons came
to my husband to collect the principal chiefs of the Winnebagoes and
meet Gen. Scott and Gov. Reynolds at Rock Island, where it was proposed
to hold a treaty for the purchase of all the lands east and south of
the Wisconsin. Messengers were accordingly sent to collect them, and,
accompanied by as many as chose to report themselves, he set off on his

He had been gone about two weeks, and I was beginning to count the days
which must elapse before I could reasonably expect his return, when,
one afternoon, I went over to pay a visit to my sister at the fort.
As I passed into the large hall that ran through the quarters, Lieut.
Lacy[119] came suddenly in, from the opposite direction, and almost
without stopping, cried,

"Bad news, madam! Have you heard it?"

"No. What is it?"

"The cholera has broken out at Rock Island, and they are dying by five
hundred a day. Dr. Finley has just arrived with the news." So saying,
he vanished without stopping to answer a question.

The cholera at Rock Island, and my husband there! I flew to the other
door of the hall, which looked out upon the parade ground. A sentinel
was walking near. "Soldier," cried I, "will you run to the young
officers' quarters and ask Dr. Finley to come here for a moment?"

The man shook his head--he was not allowed to leave his post.

Presently, Mrs. Lacy's servant girl appeared from a door under the
steps. She was a worthless creature, but where help was so scarce,
ladies could not afford to keep a scrupulous tariff of moral

"Oh! Catherine," said I, "will you run over and ask Dr. Finley to come
here a moment? I must hear what news he has brought from Rock Island."
She put on a modest look and said,

"I do not like to go to the young officers' quarters."

I was indignant at her hypocrisy, but I was also wild with impatience,
when to my great joy Dr. Finley made his appearance.

"Where is my husband?" cried I.

"On his way home, madam, safe and sound. He will probably be here
to-morrow." He then gave me an account of the ravages the cholera was
making among the troops, which were indeed severe, although less so
than rumor had at first proclaimed.

Notwithstanding the Doctor's assurance of his safety, my husband was
seized with cholera on his journey. By the kind care of Paquette and
the plentiful use of chicken-broth which the poor woman at whose cabin
he stopped administered to him, he soon recovered, and reached his home
in safety, having taken Prairie du Chien in his route and brought his
mother with him again to her home.

The Indians had consented to the sale of their beautiful domain.
Indeed, there is no alternative in such cases. If they persist in
retaining them, and become surrounded and hemmed in by the white
settlers, their situation is more deplorable than if they surrendered
their homes altogether. This they are aware of, and therefore, as a
general thing, they give up their lands at the proposal of Government,
and only take care to make the best bargain they can for themselves.
In this instance, they were to receive as an equivalent a tract of
land[BC] extending to the interior of Iowa, and an additional sum of
ten thousand dollars annually.

[Footnote BC: A belt of land termed the Neutral Ground of the different
opposing Nations.]

One of the stipulations of the treaty was, the surrender by the
Winnebagoes of certain individuals of their tribe accused of having
participated with the Sauks in some of the murders on the frontier, in
order that they might be tried by our laws, and acquitted or punished
as the case might be.

Wau-kaun-kau (the little Snake) voluntarily gave himself as a hostage
until the delivery of the suspected persons. He was accordingly
received by the Agent, and marched over and placed in confinement at
the fort, until the other seven accused should appear to redeem him.

It was a work of some little time on the part of the nation to persuade
these individuals to place themselves in the hands of the whites, that
they might receive justice according to the laws of the latter. The
trial of Red Bird, and his languishing death in prison,[120] were still
fresh in their memories, and it needed a good deal of resolution, as
well as a strong conviction of conscious innocence, to brace them up to
such a step.

It had to be brought about by arguments and persuasions, for the nation
would never have resorted to force to compel the fulfilment of their

In the mean time a solemn talk was held with the principal chiefs
assembled at the Agency. A great part of the nation were in the
immediate neighborhood, in obedience to a notice sent by Governor
Porter, who, in virtue of his office of Governor of Michigan Territory,
was also Superintendent of the North West Division of the Indians.[121]
Instead of calling upon the Agent to take charge of the annuity money,
as had heretofore been the custom, he had announced his intention
of bringing it himself to Fort Winnebago, and being present at the
payment. The time appointed had now arrived, and with it, the main body
of the Winnebagoes.

Such of the Indians as had not attended the treaty at Rock Island,
and been instrumental in the cession of their country, were loud
in their condemnation of the step, and their lamentations over it.
Foremost among these was Wild-Cat, the Falstaff of Garlic Island and
its vicinity. It was little wonder that he should shed bitter tears,
as he did, over the loss of his beautiful home on the blue waters of
Winnebago Lake.

"If he had not been accidentally stopped," he said, "on his way to the
treaty, and detained until it was too late, he would never, never have
permitted the bargain."

His "father," who knew that a desperate frolic into which Wild-Cat had
been enticed by the way was the cause of his failing to accompany his
countrymen to Rock Island, replied gravely,

"That he had heard of the chief's misfortune on this occasion. How
that, in ascending the Fox River, a couple of kegs of _whiskey_ had
come floating down the stream, which, running foul of his canoe with
great force, had injured it to such a degree that he had been obliged
to stop several days at the _Mee-kan_ to repair damages."

[Illustration: FORT WINNEBAGO IN 1834.

(Indian agency buildings on hill to left.) From oil painting, based
upon plans and local traditions, by Isaac A. Ridgway.]

The shouts of laughter which greeted this explanation were so
contagious that poor Wild-Cat himself was compelled to join in it, and
treat his misfortune as a joke.

The suspected Indians, having engaged the services of Judge Doty[122]
in their defence on their future trial, notice was at length given,
that on a certain day they would be brought to the Portage and
surrendered to their "father," to be by him transferred to the keeping
of the military officer appointed to receive them.

It was joyful news to poor Wau-kaun-kau, that the day of his release
was at hand. Every time that we had been within the walls of the fort,
we had been saluted by a call from him, as he kept his station at the
guardroom Window:

"Do you hear anything of those Indians? When are they coming, that I
may be let out?"

We had endeavored to lighten his confinement by seeing that he was
well supplied with food, and his "father" and Paquette had paid him
occasional visits, but notwithstanding this, and the kindness he had
received at the fort, his confinement was inexpressibly irksome.

On the morning of a bright autumnal day, notice was given that the
Chiefs of the Nation would present themselves at the Agency to deliver
the suspected persons as prisoners to the Americans.

At the hour of ten o'clock, as we looked out over the Portage road, we
could descry a moving concourse of people, in which brilliant color,
glittering arms, and, as they approached still nearer, certain white
objects of unusual appearance could be distinguished.

General Dodge, Major Plympton,[123] and one or two other officers took
their seats with Mr. Kinzie on the platform in front of the door to
receive them, while we stationed ourselves at the window where we could
both see and hear.

The procession wound up the hill, and then came marching slowly toward
us. It was a grand and solemn sight. First came some of the principal
chiefs in their most brilliant array. Next, the prisoners all habited
in white cotton, in token of their innocence, with girdles round
their waists. The music of the drum and the Shee-shee-qua accompanied
their death-song, which they were chanting. They wore no paint, no
ornaments--their countenances were grave and thoughtful. It might
well be a serious moment to them, for they knew but little of the
custom of the whites, and that little was not such as to inspire
cheerfulness. Only their "father's" assurance that they should receive
"strict justice," would probably have induced them to comply with the
engagements of the nation in this manner.

The remainder of the procession was made up of a long train of
Winnebagoes, all decked out in their holiday garb.

The chiefs approached and shook hands with the gentlemen who stood
ready to receive their greeting. Then the prisoners came forward, and
went through the same salutation with the officers. When they offered
their hands to their "father," he declined.

"No," said he. "You have come here accused of great crime--of having
assisted in taking the lives of some of the defenceless settlers. When
you have been tried by the laws of the land, and been proved innocent,
then, your 'father' will give you his hand."

They looked still more serious at this address, as if they thought it
indicated that their father, too, believed them guilty, and stepping
back a little, they seated themselves, without speaking, in a row upon
the ground facing their "father" and the officers. The other Indians
all took seats in a circle around them, except the one-eyed chief,
Kau-ray-kau-say-kah, or the White Crow, who had been deputed to deliver
the prisoners to the Agent.

He made a speech in which he set forth that, "although asserting their
innocence of the charges preferred against them, his countrymen were
quite willing to be tried by the laws of white men. He hoped they would
not be detained long, but that the matter would be investigated soon,
and that they would come out of it clear and white."

In reply he was assured that all things would be conducted fairly and
impartially, the same as if the accused were white men, and the hope
was added that they would be found to have been good and true citizens,
and peaceful children of their Great Father, the President.

When this was over, White Crow requested permission to transfer the
medal he had received from the President, as a mark of friendship, to
his son, who stood beside him, and who had been chosen by the nation
to fill his place as chief, an office he was desirous of resigning.
The speeches made upon this occasion, as interpreted by Paquette, the
modest demeanor of the young man, and the dignified yet feeling manner
of the father throughout, made the whole ceremony highly impressive,
and when the latter took the medal from his neck and hung it around
that of his son, addressing him a few appropriate words, I think no one
could have witnessed the scene unmoved.

I had watched the countenances of the prisoners as they sat on the
ground before me, while all these ceremonies were going forward.
With one exception they were open, calm, and expressive of conscious
innocence. Of that one I could not but admit there might be reasonable
doubts. One was remarkably fine-looking--another was a boy of certainly
not more than seventeen, and during the transfer of the medal he looked
from one to the other, and listened to what was uttered by the speakers
with an air and expression of even child-like interest and satisfaction.

Our hearts felt sad for them as, the ceremonies finished, they were
conducted by a file of soldiers and committed to the dungeon of the
guard-house, until such time as they should be summoned to attend the
Court appointed to try their cause.



The Indians did not disperse after the ceremonies of the surrender had
been gone through. They continued still in the vicinity of the Portage,
in the constant expectation of the arrival of the annuity money, which
they had been summoned there to receive. But the time for setting out
on his journey to bring it, was postponed by Gov. Porter from week to
week. Had he foreseen all the evils this delay was to occasion, the
Governor would, unquestionably, have been more prompt in fulfilling his

Many causes conspired to make an early payment desirable. In the first
place, the Winnebagoes, having been driven from their homes by their
anxiety to avoid all appearance of fraternizing with the Sacs, had
made this year no gardens nor cornfields. They had, therefore, no
provisions on hand, either for their present use, or for their winter's
consumption, except their scanty supplies of wild rice. While this was
disappearing during their protracted detention at the Portage, they
were running the risk of leaving themselves quite unprovided with food,
in case of a bad hunting season during the winter and spring.

In the next place, the rations which the Agent had been accustomed,
by the permission of Government, to deal out occasionally to them,
were now cut off by a scarcity in the Commissary's department. The
frequent levies of the militia during the summer campaign, and the
reinforcement of the garrison by the troops from Fort Howard had drawn
so largely on the stores at this post, that there was every necessity
for the most rigid economy in the issuing of supplies.

Foreseeing this state of things, Mr. Kinzie, as soon as the war was
at an end, commissioned Mr. Kercheval, then sutler at Fort Howard, to
procure him a couple of boat-loads of corn, to be distributed among the
Indians. Unfortunately, there was no corn to be obtained from Michigan;
it was necessary to bring it from Ohio, and by the time it at length
reached Green Bay, (for in those days business was never done in a
hurry,) the navigation of the Fox river had closed, and it was detained
there, to be brought up the following spring.

As day after day wore on and "the silver" did not make its appearance,
the Indians were advised by their father to disperse to their hunting
grounds to procure food, with the promise that they should be summoned
immediately on the arrival of Gov. Porter; and this advice they

While they had been in our neighborhood, they had more than once asked
permission to dance the _scalp dance_ before our door. This is the most
frightful, heart-curdling exhibition that can possibly be imagined. The
scalps are stretched on little hoops, or frames, and carried on the
end of a pole. These are brandished about in the course of the dance,
with cries, shouts and furious gestures. The women who commence as
spectators, becoming excited with the scene and the music which their
own discordant notes help to make more deafening, rush in, seize the
scalps from the hands of the owners, and toss them frantically about
with the screams and yells of demons.

I have seen as many as forty or fifty scalps figuring in one dance.
Upon one occasion one was borne by an Indian who approached quite near
me, and I shuddered as I observed the long, fair hair, evidently that
of a woman. Another Indian had the skin of a human hand, stretched and
prepared with as much care as if it had been some costly jewel. When
these dances occurred, as they sometimes did, by moonlight, they were
peculiarly horrid and revolting.

       *       *       *       *       *

Amid so many events of a painful character, there were not wanting
occasionally some that bordered on the ludicrous.

One evening, while sitting at tea, we were alarmed by the sound of guns
firing in the direction of the Wisconsin. All started up, and prepared,
instinctively, for flight to the garrison. As we left the house, we
found the whole bluff and the meadow below in commotion. Indians
running with their guns and spears across their shoulders, to the scene
of alarm; squaws and children standing in front of their lodges and
looking anxiously in the direction of the unusual and unaccountable
sounds--groups of French and half-breeds, all like ourselves, fleeing
to gain the bridge and place themselves within the pickets so lately

As one company of Indians passed us hurriedly, some weapon carelessly
carried hit one of our party on the side of the head. "Oh!" shrieked
she, "I am killed! an Indian has tomahawked me!" and she was only
reassured by finding she could still run as fast as the best of us.

When we reached the parade-ground, within the fort, we could not help
laughing at the grotesque appearance each presented. Some without hats
or shawls--others with packages of valuables hastily secured at the
moment--one with her piece of bread and butter in hand, which she had
not the presence of mind to lay aside when she took to flight.

The alarm was, in the end, found to have proceeded from a party of
Winnebagoes from one of the Barribault villages, who, being about to
leave their home for a long period, were going through the ceremony of
burying the scalps they and their fathers had taken.

Like the military funerals among civilized nations, their solemnities
were closed on this occasion by the discharge of several volleys over
the grave of their trophies.

       *       *       *       *       *

At length, about the beginning of November, Governor Porter,
accompanied by Major Forsyth and Mr. Kercheval, arrived with the
annuity money. The Indians were again assembled--the payment was made,
and having supplied themselves with a larger quantity of ammunition
than usual, for they saw the necessity of a good hunt to remedy past
and present deficiencies, they set off for their wintering grounds.

We were, ourselves, about changing our quarters, to our no small
satisfaction. Notwithstanding the Indian disturbances, the new Agency
House (permission to build which had at length been accorded by
Government) had been going steadily on, and soon after the departure of
the Governor and our other friends, we took possession of it.

We had been settled but a few weeks, when one morning Lieut.
Davies[124] appeared just as we were sitting down to breakfast, with a
face full of consternation. "_The Indian prisoners had escaped from the
black-hole!_ The commanding officer, Col. Cutler,[125] had sent for Mr.
Kinzie to come over to the fort, and counsel with him what was to be

The prisoners had probably commenced their operations in planning
escape very soon after being placed in the _black-hole_, a dungeon in
the basement of the guard-house. They observed that their meals were
brought regularly, three times a day, and that in the intervals they
were left entirely to themselves. With their knives they commenced
excavating an opening, the earth from which, as it was withdrawn, they
spread about on the floor of their prison. A blanket was placed over
this hole, and one of the company was always seated upon it, before
the regular time for the soldier who had charge of them to make his
appearance. When the periodical visit was made, the Indians were always
observed to be seated, smoking in the most orderly and quiet manner.
There was never anything to excite suspicion.

The prisoners had never read the memoirs of Baron Trenck, but they had
watched the proceedings of the badgers; so, profiting by their example,
they worked on, shaping the opening spirally, until, in about six
weeks, they came out to the open air beyond the walls of the fort.

That they might be as little encumbered as possible in their flight,
they left their blankets behind them, and although it was bitter cold
December weather, they took to the woods and prairies with only their
calico shirts and leggings for covering. We can readily believe that
hope and exultation kept them comfortably warm, until they reached an
asylum among their friends.

It would be compromising our own reputation as loyal and patriotic
citizens, to tell all the secret rejoicings this news occasioned us.

The question now was, how to get the fugitives back again. The agent
could promise no more than that he would communicate with the chiefs,
and represent the wishes of the officers that the prisoners should once
more surrender themselves, and thus free those who had had the charge
of them from the imputation of carelessness, which the Government would
be very likely to throw upon them.

When, according to their custom, many of the chiefs assembled at the
Agency, on New Year's day, their father laid the subject before them.

The Indians replied, that _if they saw the young men_, they would
tell them what the officers would like to have them do. They could,
themselves, do nothing in the matter. They had fulfilled their
engagement by bringing them once and putting them in the hands of the
officers. The Government had had them in its power once and could not
keep them--it must now go and catch them itself.

"The Government" having had some experience the past summer in
"catching Indians," wisely concluded to drop the matter.

About this time another event occurred which occasioned no small
excitement in our little community. Robineau, the striker from the
blacksmith establishment at Sugar Creek, near the Four Lakes, arrived
one very cold day at the Agency. He had come to procure medical aid
for Mâtâ's eldest daughter, Sophy, who, while sliding on the lake,
had fallen on the ice and been badly hurt. Her father was absent,
having gone to Prairie du Chien, to place his youngest daughter at
school. Two or three days had elapsed since the accident had happened,
but as a high fever had set in, and the poor girl was in a state of
great suffering, it had been thought best to send Robineau to us for
advice and aid, leaving Turcotte and a friendly Indian woman from a
neighboring lodge to take charge of poor Sophy.

The commanding officer did not think it prudent, when the subject was
laid before him, to permit the surgeon to leave the post, but he very
cheerfully granted leave of absence to Currie, the hospital steward, a
young man who possessed some knowledge of medicine and surgery.

As it was important that Sophy should have an experienced nurse, we
procured the services of Madam Bellaire, the wife of the Frenchman
who was generally employed as express to Chicago--and as an aid and
companion, Agatha, daughter of Day-kau-ray, who lived in Paquette's
family, was added to the party.

Of Agatha I shall have more to say hereafter, but at present I must
proceed with my story.

The weather was excessively cold when Robineau, Currie and the two
women set out for Sugar Creek, a distance of about forty miles. We had
taken care to provide them with a good store of rice, crackers, tea and
sugar, for the invalid, all of which, with their provisions for the
way, were packed on the horse Robineau had ridden to the Portage. It
was expected they would reach their place of destination on the second

What, then, was our surprise, to see Turcotte make his appearance on
the fourth day after their departure, to inquire why Robineau had
not returned with aid for poor Sophy! There was but one solution of
the mystery. Robineau had guided them as ill as he had guided the
boat at the Grande Chûte the summer before, and although he could not
shipwreck them, he had undoubtedly lost them in the woods or prairies.
One comfort was, that they could not well starve, for the rice and
crackers would furnish them with several days' provisions, and with
Agatha, who must be accustomed to this kind of life, they could not
fail in time of finding Indians, and being brought back to the Portage.

Still, day after day went on and we received no tidings of them.
Turcotte returned to Sugar Creek with comforts and prescriptions for
Sophy, and the commanding officer sent out a party to hunt for the
missing ones, among whom poor Currie, from his delicate constitution,
was the object of the greatest commiseration.

As the snow fell, and the winds howled, we could employ ourselves about
nothing but walking from window to window watching, in hopes of seeing
some one appear in the distance. No Indians were at hand whom we could
despatch upon the search, and by the tenth day we had almost given up
in despair.

It was then that the joyful news was suddenly brought us, "They
are found! They are at the Fort!" A party of soldiers who had been
exploring had encountered them at Hastings' Woods, twelve miles
distant, slowly and feebly making their way back to the Portage. They
knew they were on the right track, but had hardly strength to pursue it.

Exhausted with cold and hunger, for their provisions had given out two
days before, they had thought seriously of killing the horse and eating
him--nothing but Currie's inability to proceed on foot, and the dread
of being compelled to leave him in the woods to perish, had deterred

Agatha had from the first been convinced that they were on the wrong
track, but Robineau, with his usual obstinacy, persevered in keeping
it until it brought them to the Rock River, when he was obliged to
acknowledge his error, and they commenced retracing their steps.

Agatha, according to the custom of her people, had carried her hatchet
with her, and thus they had always had a fire at night, and boughs
to shelter them from the storms, otherwise they must inevitably have

There were two circumstances which aroused in us a stronger feeling
even than that of sympathy. The first was, the miserable Robineau
having demanded of Currie, first, all his money, and afterwards his
watch, as a condition of his bringing the party back into the right
path, which he averred he knew perfectly well.

The second was, Bellaire having given his kind, excellent wife a hearty
flogging "for going off," as he said, "on such a fool's errand."

The latter culprit was out of our jurisdiction, but Mons. Robineau was
discharged on the spot, and warned that he might think himself happy to
escape a legal process for swindling.

I am happy to say that Sophy Mâtâ, in whose behalf all these sufferings
had been endured, was quite recovered by the time her father returned
from "the Prairie."



Agatha was the daughter of an Indian who was distinguished by the name
of _Rascal_ Day-kau-ray. Whether he merited the appellation must be
determined hereafter. He was brother to the grand old chief of that
name, but as unlike him as it is possible for those of the same blood
to be.

The Day-kau-rays were a very handsome family, and this daughter was
remarkable for her fine personal appearance. A tall, well-developed
form, a round sweet face, and that peculiarly soft, melodious voice
which belongs to the women of her people, would have attracted
the attention of a stranger, while the pensive expression of her
countenance irresistibly drew the hearts of all towards her, and
prompted the wish to know more of her history. As I received it from
her friend, Mrs. Paquette, it was indeed a touching one.

A young officer at the fort had seen her and had set, I will not say
his heart--it may be doubted if he had one--but his mind upon her. He
applied to Paquette to negotiate what he called a marriage with her. I
am sorry to say that Paquette was induced to enter into this scheme. He
knew full well the sin of making false representations to the family of
Agatha, and he knew the misery he was about to bring upon her.

The poor girl was betrothed to a young man of her own people, and,
as is generally the case, the attachment on both sides was very
strong. Among these simple people, who have few subjects of thought or
speculation beyond the interests of their daily life, their affections
and their animosities form the warp and woof of their character. All
their feelings are intense, from being concentrated on so few objects.
Family relations, particularly with the women, engross the whole amount
of their sensibilities.

The marriage connection is a sacred and indissoluble tie. I have read,
in a recent report to the Historical Society of Wisconsin, that, in
former times, a temporary marriage between a white man and a Menomonee
woman was no uncommon occurrence, and that such an arrangement brought
no scandal. I am afraid that if such cases were investigated, a good
deal of deceit and misrepresentation would be found to have been added
to the other sins of the transaction; and that the woman would be found
to have been a victim, instead of a willing participant, in such a

At all events, no system of this kind exists among the Winnebagoes. The
strictest sense of female propriety is a distinguishing trait among
them. A woman who transgresses it, is said to have "forgotten herself,"
and is sure to be cast off and "forgotten" by her friends.

The marriage proposed between the young officer and the daughter of
Day-kau-ray, was understood as intended to be true and lasting. The
father would not have exposed himself to the contempt of his whole
nation by selling his daughter to become the mistress of any man. The
Day-kau-rays, as I have elsewhere said, were not a little proud of a
remote cross of French blood which mingled with the aboriginal stream
in their veins, and probably in acceding to the proposed connection,
the father of Agatha was as much influenced by what he considered
the honor to be derived, as by the amount of valuable presents which
accompanied the overtures made to him.

Be that as it may, the poor girl was torn from her lover, and
transferred from her father's lodge to the quarters of the young

There were no ladies in the garrison at that time. Had there been,
such a step would hardly have been ventured. Far away in the
wilderness, shut out from the salutary influences of religious and
social cultivation, what wonder that the moral sense sometimes becomes
blinded, and that the choice is made, "Evil, be thou my good!"

The first step in wrong was followed by one still more aggravated in
cruelty. The young officer left the post, as he said, on furlough, but
_he never returned_. The news came that he was married, and when he
again joined his regiment it was at another post.

There was a natural feeling in the strength of the "woe pronounced
against him" by more tongues than one. "He will never," said my
informant, "dare show himself in this country again! Not an Indian who
knows the Day-kau-rays but would take his life if he should meet him!"

Every tie was broken for poor Agatha but that which bound her to her
infant. She never returned to her father's lodge, for she felt that,
being deserted, she was dishonored. Her sole ambition seemed to be to
bring up her child like those of the whites. She attired it in the
costume of the French children, with a dress of bright calico, and a
cap of the same, trimmed with narrow black lace. It was a fine child,
and the only time I ever saw a smile cross her face, was when it was
commended and caressed by some member of our family.

Even this, her only source of happiness, poor Agatha was called upon
to resign. During our absence at Green Bay, while the Sauks were in
the neighborhood, the child was taken violently ill. The house at
Paquette's, which was the mother's home, was thronged with Indians, and
of course there was much noise and disturbance. A place was prepared
for her under our roof, where she could be more quiet, and receive the
attendance of the post physician. It was all in vain--nothing could
save the little creature's life. The bitter agony of the mother, as she
hung over the only treasure she possessed on earth, was described to
me as truly heart-rending. When compelled to part with it, it seemed
almost more than nature could bear. There were friends, not of her own
nation or color, who strove to comfort her. Did the father ever send a
thought or inquiry after the fate of his child, or of the young being
whose life he had rendered dark and desolate? We will hope that he
did--that he repented and asked pardon from above for the evil he had

Agatha had been baptized by M. Mazzuchelli. Perhaps she may have
acquired some religious knowledge which could bring her consolation in
her sorrows, and compensate her for the hopes and joys so early blasted.

She came, some months after the death of her child, in company with
several of the half-breed women of the neighborhood, to pay me a visit
of respect and congratulation. When she looked at her "little brother,"
as he was called, and took his soft tiny hand within her own, the tears
stood in her eyes, and she spoke some little words of tenderness, which
showed that her heart was full. I could scarcely refrain from mingling
my tears with hers, as I thought on all the sorrow and desolation that
one man's selfishness had occasioned.

Early in February, 1833, my husband and Lieut. Hunter, in company with
one or two others, sat off on a journey to Chicago. That place had
become so much of a town, (it contained perhaps fifty inhabitants),
that it was necessary for the proprietors of "Kinzie's Addition" to
lay out lots and open streets through their property. All this was
accomplished during the present visit.

While they were upon the ground with a surveyor, the attention of my
husband was drawn towards a very bright-looking boy in Indian costume,
who went hopping along by the side of the assistant who carried the
chain, mimicking him as in the course of his operations he cried,
"stick!" "stuck!" He inquired who the lad was, and to his surprise
learned that he was the brother of the old family servants, Victoire,
Geneveive and Baptiste. Tomah, for that was his name, had never been
arrayed in civilized costume; he was in blanket and leggins, and had
always lived in a wigwam. My husband inquired if he would like to go to
Fort Winnebago with him, and learn to be a white boy. The idea pleased
him much, and his mother having given her sanction to the arrangement,
he was packed in a wagon, with the two gentlemen and their travelling
gear, and they set forth on their return journey.

Tomah had been equipped in a jacket and pants, with the other articles
of apparel necessary to his new sphere and character. They were near
the Aux Plains, and approaching the residence of Glode (Claude)
Laframboise, where Tomah knew he should meet acquaintances. He asked
leave to get out of the wagon and walk a little way. When they next saw
him, he was in full Pottowattamic costume, and although it was bitter
winter weather, he had put on his uncomfortable native garb rather
than show himself to his old friends in a state of transformation.

On his arrival at Fort Winnebago, our first care was to furnish him
with a complete wardrobe, which, having been placed in a box in his
sleeping apartment, was put under his charge. Words cannot express his
delight as the valuable possessions were confided to him. Every spare
moment was devoted to their contemplation. Now and then Tomah would
be missing. He was invariably found seated by the side of his little
trunk, folding and refolding his clothes, laying them now lengthwise,
now crosswise, the happiest of mortals.

The next step was, to teach him to be useful. Such little offices were
assigned to him at first as might be supposed not altogether new to
him, but we soon observed that when there was anything in the shape of
work, Tomah slipt off to bed, even if it were before he had taken his
supper. Some fish were given him one evening to scale; it was just at
dark; but Tom, according to custom, retired at once to bed.

The cook came to inquire what was to be done. I was under the necessity
of calling in my husband's aid as interpreter. He sent for Tomah. When
he came into the parlor, Mr. Kinzie said to him in Pottowattamic:--

"There are some fish, Tomah, in the kitchen, and we want you to scale

"Now?" exclaimed Tom, with an expression of amazement, "it is very

A young lady. Miss Rolette, who was visiting us, and who understood
the language, could not refrain from bursting into a laugh at the
simplicity with which the words were uttered, and we joined her
for sympathy, at which Tom looked a little indignant, but when he
understood that it was the _white custom_ to scale the fish at night,
and put salt and pepper on them, he was soon reconciled to do his duty
in the matter.

His next office was to lay the table. There was a best service of
china, which was to be used when we had company, and a best set of
teaspoons, which I kept in the drawer of a bureau in my own room above
stairs. I was in the habit of keeping this drawer locked, and putting
the key under a small clock on the mantel-piece. The first time that I
had shown Tomah how to arrange matters for visitors, I had brought the
silver and put it on the table myself.

Soon after, we were to have company to tea again, and I explained
to Tomah that the best china must be used. What was my surprise, on
going through the dining-room a short time after, to see not only the
new china, but the "company silver" also on the table. I requested my
mother to inquire into the matter.

Tomah said, very coolly, "He got the silver where it was kept."

"Did he find the drawer open?"

"No--he opened it with a key."

"Was the key in the drawer?"

"No--it was under that thing on the shelf."

"How did he know it was kept there."

This was what Mr. Tomah declined telling. We could never ascertain
whether he had watched my movements at any time. No one had ever seen
him in that part of the house, and yet there could scarcely an article
be mentioned of which Tomah did not know the whereabout. If any one was
puzzled to find a thing it was always,

"Ask Tomah--he will tell you." And so in fact he did. He was a subject
of much amusement to the young officers. We were to have "a party"
one evening--all the families and young officers at the fort. To make
Tomah's appearance as professional as possible, we had made him a white
apron with long sleeves to put on while he was helping Mary and Josette
to carry round tea--for I must acknowledge that Tomah's clothes were
not kept in as nice order out of the trunk as in it.

Tom was delighted with his new costume, as well as with the new
employment. He acquitted himself to perfection, for he had never any
difficulty in imitating what he saw another do. After tea we had some
music. As I was standing by the piano at which one of the ladies was
seated, Lt. Vancleve[126] said to me in a low tone,

"Look behind you a moment."

I turned. There sat Tom between two of the company, as stately as
possible, with his white apron smoothed down, and his hands clasped
before him, listening to the music, and on the best possible terms
with himself and all around him. Julian and Edwin were hardly able to
restrain their merriment, but they were afraid to do or say anything
that would cause him to move before the company had had a full
enjoyment of the scene. It was voted unanimously that Tomah should
be permitted to remain and enjoy the pleasures of society for one
evening--but, with characteristic restlessness, he got tired as soon as
the music was over, and unceremoniously took his leave of the company.



What we had long anticipated of the sufferings of the Indians, began
to manifest itself as the spring drew on. It first came under our
observation by the accounts brought in, by those who came in little
parties begging for food.

As long as it was possible to issue occasional rations their father
continued to do so, but the supplies in the Commissary Department
were now so much reduced that Col. Cutler did not feel justified in
authorizing anything beyond a scanty relief, and this in extreme cases.

We had ourselves throughout the winter used the greatest economy with
our own stores, that we might not exhaust our slender stock of flour
and meal before it could be replenished from "below." We had even
purchased some sour flour which had been condemned by the commissary,
and had contrived by a plentiful use of saleratus, and a due proportion
of potatoes, to make of it a very palatable kind of bread. But as we
had continued to give to party after party, as they would come to us to
represent their famishing condition, the time at length arrived when we
had nothing to give.

The half-breed families of the neighborhood, who had, like ourselves,
continued to share with the needy as long as their own stock lasted,
were now obliged, of necessity, to refuse further assistance. These
women often came in to lament with us over the sad accounts that were
brought from the wintering grounds. It had been a very open winter.
The snow had scarcely been enough at any time to permit the Indians to
track the deer, in fact, all the game had been driven off by the troops
and war parties scouring the country through the preceding summer.

We heard of their dying by companies from mere destitution, and lying
stretched in the road to the Portage, whither they were striving to
drag their exhausted frames. Soup made of the bark of the slippery elm,
or stewed acorns, were the only food that many had subsisted on for

We had for a long time received our food by daily rations from
the garrison, for things had got to such a pass that there was no
possibility of obtaining a barrel of flour at a time. After our meals
were finished, I always went into the pantry, and collecting carefully
every remaining particle of food set it aside to be given to some of
the wretched applicants by whom we were constantly thronged.

One day as I was thus employed, a face appeared at the window with
which I had once been familiar. It was the pretty daughter of the elder
Day-kau-ray. She had formerly visited us often, watching with great
interest our employments--our sewing, or weeding and cultivating the
garden, or our reading. Of the latter, I had many times endeavored to
give her some idea, showing her the plates in the Family Bible, and
doing my best to explain them to her, but of late I had quite lost
sight of her. Now, how changed, how wan she looked! As I addressed her
with my ordinary phrase, "_Tshah-ko-zhah?_" (What is it?) she gave a
sigh that was almost a sob. She did not beg, but her countenance spoke

I took my dish and handed it to her, expecting to see her devour the
contents eagerly, but no--she took it, and making signs that she would
soon return, walked away. When she brought it back, I was almost sure
she had not tasted a morsel herself.

       *       *       *       *       *

The boats--the boats with the corn! Why did they not come? We both
wrote and sent to hasten them, but alas! everything and everybody moved
so slowly in those unenterprising times! We could only feel sure that
they would come when they were ready, and not a moment before.

We were soon obliged to keep both doors and windows fast, to shut out
the sight of misery we could not relieve. If a door was opened for the
admission of a member of the family, some wretched mother would rush
in, grasp the hand of my infant, and placing that of her famishing
child within it, tell us pleadingly, that he was imploring "his little
brother" for food. The stoutest-hearted man could not have beheld with
dry eyes the heart-rending spectacle which often presented itself. It
was in vain that we screened the lower portion of our windows with
curtains. They would climb up on the outside, and tier upon tier of
gaunt, wretched faces would peer in above, to watch us, and see if,
indeed, we were as ill-provided as we represented ourselves.

The noble old Day-kau-ray came one day, from the Barribault, to apprise
us of the state of his village. More than forty of his people, he
said, had now been for many days without food, save bark and roots.
My husband accompanied him to the commanding officer to tell his
story, and ascertain ii any amount of food could be obtained from that
quarter. The result was, the promise of a small allowance of flour,
sufficient to alleviate the cravings of his own family.

When this was explained to the chief, he turned away. "No," he said,
"if his people could not be relieved, he and his family would starve
with them!" And he refused, for those nearest and dearest to him, the
proffered succor, until all could share alike.

The announcement, at length, that "the boats were in sight," was a
thrilling and most joyful sound.

Hundreds of poor creatures were at once assembled on the bank, watching
their arrival. Oh! how torturing was their slow approach, by the
winding course of the river, through the extended prairie! As the first
boat touched the bank, we, who were gazing on the scene with anxiety
and impatience only equalled by that of the sufferers, could scarcely
refrain from laughing, to see old Wild-Cat, who had somewhat fallen off
in his huge amount of flesh, seize "the Washington Woman" in his arms,
and hug and dance with her in the ecstasy of his delight.

Their father made a sign to them all to fall to work with their
hatchets, which they had long held ready, and in an incredibly short
time, barrel after barrel was broken open and emptied, while even the
little children possessed themselves of pans and kettles full, and
hastened to the fires that were blazing around to parch and cook that
which they had seized.

From this time forward, there was no more destitution. The present
abundance was followed by the arrival of supplies for the Commissary's
Department; and refreshed and invigorated, our poor children departed
once more to their villages, to make ready their crops for the ensuing

In the course of the spring, we received a visit from the Rev. Mr.
Kent, and Mrs. Kent, of Galena.[127] This event is memorable, as being
the first occasion on which the Gospel, according to the Protestant
faith, was preached at Fort Winnebago. The large parlor of the hospital
was fitted up for the service, and gladly did we each say to the other,
"Let us go to the house of the Lord!"

For nearly three years had we lived here without the blessing of
a public service of praise and thanksgiving. We regarded this
commencement as an omen of better times, and our little "sewing
society" worked with renewed industry, to raise a fund which might be
available hereafter, in securing the permanent services of a missionary.

       *       *       *       *       *

Not long after this, on a fine spring morning, as we were seated at
breakfast, a party of Indians entered the parlor, and came to the door
of the room where we were. Two of them passed through, and went out
upon a small portico--the third remained standing in the door-way at
which he had at first appeared. He was nearly opposite me, and as I
raised my eyes, spite of his change of dress, and the paint with which
he was covered, I at once recognized him.

I continued to pour the coffee, and as I did so, I remarked to my
husband, "The one behind you, with whom you are speaking, is one of the
escaped prisoners."

Without turning his head, he continued to listen to all the directions
they were giving him about the repairing of their guns, traps, &c.,
which they wished to leave with the blacksmith. As they went on, he
cautiously turned his head towards the parlor door, and replied to the
one speaking to him from there. When he again addressed me, it was to

"You are right, but it is no affair of ours. We are none of us to look
so as to give him notice that we suspect anything. They are undoubtedly
innocent, and have suffered enough already."

Contrary to his usual custom, their father did not ask their names, but
wrote their directions, which he tied to their different implements,
and then bade them go and deliver them themselves to M. Morrin.

The rest of our circle were greatly pleased at the young fellow's
audacity, and we quite longed to tell the officers that we could have
caught one of their fugitives for them, if we had had a mind.

       *       *       *       *       *

The time had now come when we began to think seriously of leaving our
pleasant home, and taking up our residence at Detroit, while making
arrangements for a permanent settlement at Chicago.

The intelligence, when communicated to our Winnebago children, brought
forth great lamentations and demonstrations of regret. From the
surrounding country they came flocking in, to inquire into the truth
of the tidings they had heard, and to petition earnestly that we would
continue to live and die among them.

Among them all no one seemed so overwhelmed with affliction as
Elizabeth, our poor _Cut-nose_. When we first told her of our
intention, she sat for hours in the same spot, wiping away the tears
that would find their way down her cheeks, with the corner of the
chintz shawl she wore pinned across her bosom.

"No! never, never, never shall I find such friends again," she would
exclaim. "You will go away, and I shall be left here _all alone_."

Wild-Cat too, the fat, jolly Wild-Cat, gave way to the most audible

"Oh! my little brother," he said to the baby, on the morning of our
departure, when he had insisted on taking him and seating him on his
fat, dirty knee, "you will never come back to see your poor brother

And having taken an extra glass on the occasion, he wept like an infant.

It was with sad hearts that on the morning of the 1st of July, 1833,
we bade adieu to the long cortege which followed us to the boat, now
waiting to convey us to Green Bay, where we were to meet Governor
Porter and Mr. Brush, and proceed, under their escort, to Detroit.

When they had completed their tender farewells, they turned to
accompany their father across the Portage, on his route to Chicago, and
long after, we could see them winding along the road, and hear their
loud lamentations at a parting which they foresaw would be forever.


As I have given throughout the Narrative of the Sauk War, the
impressions we received from our own observation, or from information
furnished us at the time, I think it but justice to Black Hawk and his
party to insert, by way of Appendix, the following account, preserved
among the manuscript writings of the late Thomas Forsyth, Esq., of St.
Louis, who, after residing among the Indians many years as a trader,
was, until the year 1830, the Agent of the Sauks and Foxes.[128] The
manuscript was written in 1832, while Black Hawk and his compatriots
were in prison at Jefferson Barracks.

       *       *       *       *       *

"The United States troops under the command of Major Stoddard arrived
here,[BD] and took possession of this country in the month of February,
1804. In the spring of that year, a white person (a man or boy), was
killed in Cuivre Settlement, by a Sauk Indian. Some time in the summer
following, a party of United States troops were sent up to the Sauk
village on Rocky river, and a demand made of the Sauk Chiefs for the
murderer. The Sauk Chiefs did not hesitate a moment, but delivered him
up to the commander of the troops, who brought him down and delivered
him over to the civil authority in this place (St. Louis).

[Footnote BD: St. Louis, Mo.]

"Some time in the ensuing autumn some Sauk and Fox Indians came to this
place, and had a conversation with General Harrison (then Governor of
Indian Territory, and acting Governor of this State, then Territory of
Louisiana), on the subject of liberating their relative, then in prison
at this place for the above-mentioned murder.

"Quash-quame, a Sauk chief, who was the head man of this party, has
repeatedly said, 'Mr. Pierre Choteau, Sen., came several times to my
camp, offering that if I would sell the lands on the east side of
the Mississippi river, Governor Harrison would liberate my relation,
(meaning the Sauk Indian then in prison as above related), to which
I at last agreed, and sold the lands from the mouth of the Illinois
river up the Mississippi river as high as the mouth of Rocky river
(now Rock river), and east to the ridge that divides the waters of the
Mississippi and Illinois rivers, but I never sold any more lands.'
Quash-quame also said to Governor Edwards, Governor Clark and Mr.
Auguste Chouteau, Commissioners appointed to treat with the Chippewas,
Ottowas, and Pottowattamies of Illinois river, in the summer of 1816,
for lands on the west side of the Illinois river:

"'Your white men may put on paper what you please, but again I tell
you, I never sold any lands higher up the Mississippi than the mouth of
Rocky river.'

"In the treaty first mentioned, the line commences opposite to
the mouth of Gasconade river, and running in a direct line to the
headwaters of Jefferson[BE] river, thence down that river to the
Mississippi river--thence up the Mississippi river to the mouth of the
Ouisconsin river--thence up that river thirty-six miles--thence in a
direct line to a little lake in Fox river of Illinois, down Fox river
to Illinois river, down Illinois river to its mouth, thence down the
Mississippi river to the mouth of Missouri river, thence up that river
to the place of beginning. See Treaty dated at St. Louis, 4th November,

[Footnote BE: There is no such river in this country, therefore this
treaty is null and void---of no effect in law or equity. Such was the
opinion of the late Gov. Howard. (T. F.)]

"The Sauk and Fox nations were never consulted, nor had any hand in
this Treaty, nor knew anything about it. It was made and signed by two
Sauk chiefs, one Fox chief and one warrior.

"When the annuities were delivered to the Sauk and Fox nations of
Indians, according to the treaty above referred to (amounting to $1,000
per annum), the Indians always thought they were presents, (as the
annuity for the first twenty years was always paid in goods, sent on
from Georgetown, District of Columbia, and poor articles of merchandize
they were, very often damaged and not suitable for Indians), until I,
as their Agent, convinced them of the contrary, in the summer of 1818.
When the Indians heard that the goods delivered to them were annuities
for land, sold by them to the United States, they were astonished, and
refused to accept of the goods, denying that they ever sold the lands
as stated by me, their Agent. The Black Hawk in particular, who was
present at the time, made a great noise about this land, and would
never receive any part of the annuities from that time forward. He
always denied the authority of Quash-quame and others to sell any part
of their lands, and told the Indians not to receive any presents or
annuities from any American--otherwise their lands would be claimed at
some future day.

"As the United States do insist, and retain the lands according to the
Treaty of Nov. 4, 1804, why do they not fulfil _their_ part of that
Treaty as equity demands?

"The Sauk and Fox nations are allowed, according to that Treaty, 'to
live and hunt on the lands so ceded, as long as the aforesaid lands
belong to the United States.' In the spring of the year 1827, about
twelve or fifteen families of squatters arrived and took possession of
the Sauk village, near the mouth of the Rocky river. They immediately
commenced destroying the Indians' bark boats. Some were burned, others
were torn to pieces, and when the Indians arrived at the village, and
found fault with the destruction of their property, they were beaten
and abused by the Squatters.

"The Indians made complaint to me, as their Agent I wrote to Gen.
Clark,[BF] stating to him from time to time what happened, and giving a
minute detail of everything that passed between the whites (Squatters)
and the Indians.

[Footnote BF: Superintendent of Indian Affairs at St. Louis. (Ed.)]

"The squatters insisted that the Indians should be removed from their
village, saying that as soon as the land was brought into market they
(the squatters) would buy it all. It became needless for me to show
them the treaty, and the right the Indians had to remain on their
lands. They tried every method to annoy the Indians, by shooting
their dogs, claiming their horses; complaining that the Indians'
horses broke into their cornfields--selling them whiskey for the most
trifling articles, contrary to the wishes and request of the chiefs,
particularly the Black Hawk, who both solicited and threatened them on
the subject, but all to no purpose.

"The President directed those lands to be sold at the Land Office, in
Springfield, Illinois. Accordingly when the time came that they were to
be offered for sale (in the Autumn of 1828), there were about twenty
families of squatters at, and in the vicinity of the old Sauk village,
most of whom attended the sale, and but one of them could purchase a
quarter-section (if we except George Davenport, a trader who resides
in Rocky Island). Therefore, all the land not sold, still belonged to
the United States, and the Indians had still a right, by treaty, to
hunt and live on those lands. This right, however, was not allowed
them--they must move off.

"In 1830, the principal chiefs, and others of the Sauk and Fox Indians
who resided at the old village, near Rocky river, acquainted me that
they would remove to their village on Ihoway river. These chiefs
advised me to write to General Clarke, Superintendent of Indian Affairs
at this place (St. Louis), to send up a few militia--that the Black
Hawk and his followers would then see that everything was in earnest,
and they would remove to the west side of the Mississippi, to their own

"The letter, as requested by the chiefs, was written and sent by me to
General Clarke, but he did not think proper to answer it--therefore
everything remained as formerly, and, as a matter of course. Black Hawk
and his party thought the whole matter of removing from the old village
had blown over.

"In the Spring of 1831, the Black Hawk and his party were augmented
by many Indians from Ihoway river. This augmentation of forces made
the Black Hawk very proud, and he supposed nothing would be done about
removing him and his party.

"General Gaines visited the Black Hawk and his party this season, with
a force of regulars and militia, and compelled them to remove to the
west side of the Mississippi river, on their own lands.

"When the Black Hawk and party recrossed to the east side of the
Mississippi river in 1832, they numbered three hundred and sixty-eight
men. They were hampered with many women and children, and had no
intention to make war. When attacked by General Stillman's detachment,
they defended themselves like men, and I would ask, who would not do
so, likewise? Thus the war commenced. * * * *

"The Indians had been defeated, dispersed, and some of the principal
chiefs are now in prison and in chains, at Jefferson Barracks. * * * *

"It is very well known, by all who know the Black Hawk, that he has
always been considered a friend to the whites. Often has he taken into
his lodge the wearied white man, given him good food to eat, and a good
blanket to sleep on before the fire. Many a good meal has _the Prophet_
given to people travelling past his village, and very many stray horses
has he recovered from the Indians, and restored to their rightful
owners, without asking any recompense whatever. * * * *

"What right have we to tell any people, 'You shall not cross the
Mississippi river on any pretext whatever?' When the Sauk and Fox
Indians wish to cross the Mississippi, to visit their relations among
the Pottawattomies, of Fox river, Illinois, they are prevented by us,
_because we have the power!_"

I omit, in the extracts I have made, the old gentleman's occasional
comments upon the powers that dictated, and the forces which carried on
the warfare of this unhappy Summer. There is every reason to believe
that had his suggestions been listened to, and had he continued the
Agent of the Sauks and Foxes, a sad record might have been spared.
I mean the untimely fate of the unfortunate M. St. Vrain, who, a
comparative stranger to his people, was murdered by them, in their
exasperated fury, at Kellogg's Grove, soon after the commencement of
the campaign.



1 (page 2).--_Summary Narrative of an Exploratory Expedition to the
Sources of the Mississippi River in 1820; resumed and completed by
the Discovery of its Origin in Itasca Lake in 1832_, by Henry R.
Schoolcraft (Philadelphia: Lippincott, Grambo & Co., 1855--the year in
which _Wau-Bun_ was written).

2 (page 2).--The etymology of Michilimackinac (now abbreviated to
Mackinac) is generally given as "great turtle," and is supposed to
refer to the shape of the island. The Ottawa chief, A. J. Blackbird,
in his _History of the Ottawa and Chippewa Indians of Michigan_
(Ypsilanti, Mich., 1887), pp. 19, 20, gives a far different derivation;
he traces the name back to "Mishinemackinong," the dwelling-place of
the Mishinemackinawgo, a small tribe, early allies of the Ottawas,
but practically annihilated by the Iroquois, during one of the
North-western raids of the latter.

3 (page 3).---Robert Stuart, born in Scotland in 1784, was educated
in Paris; coming to America when twenty-two years of age, he went at
once to Montreal, connecting himself with the Northwest Fur Company.
In 1810, in connection with his uncle, David Stuart, he joined forces
with John Jacob Astor's American Fur Company, and was one of the party
which went from New York by sea to found Astoria, on the Pacific coast.
In 1812, in company with Ramsay Crooks, he was sent overland to New
York with important despatches for the company--a hazardous expedition,
which consumed nearly a year in its accomplishment. He arrived at
Mackinac in 1819, a partner with Astor in the American Fur Company,
and manager of its affairs throughout the wide expanse of country
which was then served from this entrepôt. After fifteen years upon the
island, where he was the leading resident, Stuart went to Detroit in
1834, upon the closing out of the company's affairs. At that place he
took prominent part in business and public affairs. In 1887 we find him
local director of the poor; in 1839, moderator of the school district;
in 1840-41, state treasurer of Michigan, and from 1841-45, United
States Indian agent for that state. Stuart also took active part in
church work, was insistent on discountenancing the rum traffic, which
always went hand in hand with the fur trade, and bore a high reputation
for personal probity. Dying suddenly in Chicago, in 1848, his body was
taken in a sailing-vessel around by the lakes to Detroit; at Mackinac
Island, en route, it lay in state for several hours.

4 (page 6).--Rev. William Montague Ferry organized the Presbyterian
church at Mackinac in 1822; it later developed into a mission school.
After suffering many trials and disappointments he was released from
service August 6, 1834, at once settling at Grand Haven, Mich., his
being the first white family at that place. He died December 30, 1867.
Williams's _The Old Mission Church of Mackinac Island_ (Detroit, 1895)
gives a history of this enterprise.

5 (page 6).--Upon the downfall of New France (1763), the fur trade of
the Northwest fell into the hands of citizens of Great Britain. In
1766, a few Scotch merchants reopened the trade, with headquarters
at Mackinac, employing French-Canadians as agents, clerks, and
_voyageurs_. In 1783-87, the Northwest Company was organized, also
with Mackinac as a center of distribution, as the chief rival of the
Hudson Bay Company and of the old Mackinaw Company. In 1809, John Jacob
Astor organized the American Fur Company. Two years later he secured a
half interest in the Mackinaw Company, which he renamed the Southwest
Company. In the war of 1812-15, Astor lost his Pacific post of Astoria,
which fell into the possession of the Northwest Company, and the trade
of the Southwest Company was shattered. In 1816, Congress decreed that
foreign fur-traders were not to be admitted to do business within the
United States. Under this protection Astor reorganized the American Fur
Company, which flourished until his retirement from business, in 1834.

6 (page 8).--Large bateaux, about thirty feet long, used by fur-traders
in the transportation of their cargoes upon the lakes and rivers of
the Northwest. The cargo was placed in the center, both ends being
sharp and high above the water. The crew generally consisted of seven
men (_voyageurs_), of whom six rowed and one served as steersman; in
addition, each boat was commanded by a clerk of the fur company, who
was called the _bourgeois_ (master). During rainstorms the cargo was
protected by snug-fitting tarpaulins, fastened down and over the sides
of the boat.

7 (page 9).--Madame Joseph Laframboise, a half-breed, was the daughter
of Jean Baptiste Marcotte, who died while she was an infant; her mother
was the daughter of Kewaniquot (Returning Cloud), a prominent chief
of the Ottawas. Joseph Laframboise, a devout man, of great force of
character, conducted a considerable trade with the Indians. In 1809,
while kneeling at prayer in his tent near Grand River, on the east
shore of Lake Michigan, he was shot dead by an Indian to whom he had
refused to give liquor.

His wife, who had generally accompanied him on his expeditions,
continued the business without interruption, and obtained a wide
reputation throughout the Mackinac district as a woman of rare business
talents, and capable of managing the natives with astuteness. Her
contemporaries among Americans described her as speaking a remarkably
fine French, and being a graceful and refined person, despite her
limited education. She invariably wore the costume of an Indian
squaw. Her children were placed at school in Montreal. One of her
daughters, Josette, was married at Mackinac to Captain Benjamin K.
Pierce, commandant of the fort, and brother of President Pierce. Madame
Laframboise closed her business with the American Fur Company in 1821,
and thereafter lived upon the island, where she lies buried.

8 (page 10).--Samuel Abbott was one of the officials of the American
Fur Company, and a notary and justice of the peace, for many years
being the only functionary on Mackinac Island vested with power to
perform marriage ceremonies.

Edward Biddle was a brother of Nicholas Biddle, president of the United
States Bank during Andrew Jackson's administration. Edward went to
Mackinac about 1818, and married a pretty, full-blooded Indian girl,
step-daughter of a French fur-trade clerk named Joseph Bailly. The
Biddies lived on the island for fifty years, and were buried there.
Their eldest daughter, Sophia, was carefully educated in Philadelphia
by Nicholas Biddle's family, but finally died on the island, of
consumption. She was, like her mother, a Catholic; but the other
children, also well educated, became Protestants.

9 (page 10).--For a character sketch of Mrs. David Mitchell, see
Mrs. Baird's "Early Days on Mackinac Island," _Wisconsin Historical
Collections_, vol. xiv, pp. 35-58.

10 (page 11).--British and Indian forces under Captain Charles
Roberts, from the garrison at St. Joseph, captured the American fort
on Mackinac Island, commanded by Lieutenant Porter Hanks, upon July
17, 1812. The ease with which this capture was made, induced the
British to throw up a strong earthwork on the high hill commanding the
fort, about a half-mile in its rear. This fortification was called
Fort George; August 4, 1814, an attempt was made by the Americans to
retake the island, which has great strategic importance, as guarding
the gateways to Lakes Michigan, Huron, and Superior. There were seven
war-vessels under Commodore Sinclair, and a land force of 750 under
Colonel Croghan. The vessels could effect only a blockade; the military
disembarked at "British Landing," where Roberts's forces had beached
two years before. In the consequent attack, which proved fruitless,
Major Andrew Hunter Holmes, second in command, and an officer of
great promise, was killed. When the island was surrendered to the
United States by the treaty of Ghent (February, 1815), Fort George was
rechristened Fort Holmes, a name which the abandoned ruins still bear.

11 (page 12).--The author was evidently misled by a typographical error
in some historical work which she had consulted. The date should be
1670. Father Jacques Marquette, driven with his flock of Hurons and
Ottawas from Chequamegon Bay (Lake Superior) by the Sioux of the West,
established himself at Point St. Ignace. There he remained for three
years, until he left with Louis Joliet to explore the Mississippi River.

12 (page 12).--When, in 1650, the Hurons fled before the great
Iroquois invasion, some of them took refuge with the French at
Quebec, and others migrated to the Mackinac region, and even as
far west as northern Wisconsin. The refugees to Lake Superior and
northern Wisconsin were driven back east again in 1670 (see Note
11), to Mackinac. When Cadillac founded Detroit (1701), some of them
accompanied him, and settled in the outskirts of that town. They
remained without a religious teacher until the arrival of the Jesuit La
Richardie. He established his mission on the opposite bank of the river
from Detroit, at where is now Sandwich, Ontario. This was in order to
avoid conflict of ecclesiastical jurisdiction with the Récollets in
charge at Detroit. The mission house built by La Richardie stood until
after the middle of the nineteenth century; that portion of his church
which was built in 1728 remained until the last decade of that century;
but the addition, built in 1743, is still in good condition, and used
as a dwelling.

13 (page 12).--Near the modern village of Harbor Springs, Mich. It is
frequently called "Cross Village" in early English-American documents.

14 (page 14).--John P. Arndt, a Pennsylvania German, arrived in Green
Bay in 1823. He was for many years the leader of the French fur-trading
element on the lower Fox River. He kept the first ferry at Green Bay
(1825), and was as well a miller and a lumberman.

15 (page 15).--In 1820, Colonel Joseph Lee Smith moved the garrison
from Fort Howard, on the west bank of Fox River, to new quarters,
called Camp Smith, three miles above, on the opposite bank. Camp
Smith was occupied for two years, when the garrison returned to
Fort Howard. A polyglot settlement sprang up between Camp Smith and
the river, popularly called Shantytown, but later (1829) platted
as Menomoneeville. Shantytown was afterward abandoned by the most
prosperous settlers in favor of a point lower down the river on the
same bank, and is but a suburb of the present Green Bay.

16 (page 16).--The site of Fort Howard (thus named from General
Benjamin Howard), on the west bank of Fox River, was selected in 1816
by Major Charles Gratiot, of the engineer corps, who prepared the
plans, and was present during the earlier portion of its construction;
its completion was, however, left to the superintendence of Colonel
Talbot Chambers. As per Note 15, the fort was abandoned in favor of
Camp Smith from 1820-22, but was otherwise continuously garrisoned
until 1841. It then remained ungarrisoned until 1849, when it was
occupied for two years. From 1852 forward the fort was unoccupied, save
for a brief period in 1863 by militiamen. The buildings are now for the
most part effaced.

17 (page 16).--James Duane Doty was born at Salem, N. Y., November 5,
1799. Having studied law, he settled at Detroit in his twentieth year,
and soon became clerk of the Michigan Supreme Court and secretary of
the territorial legislature. In 1820 he made a tour of the upper lakes
in company with Governor Lewis Cass, penetrating to the sources of the
Mississippi. In 1823 he was appointed United States district judge for
that portion of Michigan Territory lying west of Lakes Michigan and
Superior, and for ten years held court both at Green Bay and Prairie
du Chien. In 1834, as a member of the territorial legislature, he
drafted the act which made Michigan a state and Wisconsin a territory.
From 1837-41 he served as delegate to Congress from Wisconsin, and
from 1841-44 as governor of the new territory. Vigorously ambitious
in behalf of Wisconsin, he long though vainly sought to regain from
Illinois the strip of country north of a line drawn due westward from
the southernmost part of Lake Michigan, the ordinance of 1787 having
named this as the boundary between the two states to be erected to
the west of Lake Michigan and the Wabash River; had his contention
prevailed, Chicago would have been a Wisconsin city. Doty served in
the Wisconsin state constitutional convention (1846); was a member of
Congress (1850-53); in 1861 was appointed superintendent of Indian
affairs of Utah, and signed the first treaty ever made with the
Shoshones; and in May, 1863, was appointed governor of Utah, in which
office he died, June 13, 1865.

18 (page 17).--William Selby Harney, born in Louisiana, entered the
array in 1818 as a second lieutenant. He was made captain in the First
Infantry May 14, 1825, and major and paymaster May 1, 1833; promoted
to the lieutenant-colonelcy of the Second Dragoons August 15, 1836;
brevetted colonel December 7, 1840, for gallant and meritorious conduct
in successive Indian campaigns, and became colonel of his regiment
June 30, 1846. For conspicuous gallantry in the battle of Cerro
Gordo, he was brevetted brigadier-general April 18, 1847, and became
brigadier-general June 14, 1858. He was retired August 1, 1863, and two
years later was brevetted major-general for long and faithful service.
He died May 9, 1889.

19 (page 18).--Joseph Rolette was a prominent fur trader of Prairie du
Chien, and one of the most marked characters among the French Canadians
of Wisconsin during the first third of the nineteenth century. In the
War of 1812-15, he held a commission in the British Indian department,
and piloted the British troops in their attack on Prairie du Chien in

20 (page 20).--Rev. Richard Fish Cadle organized the Episcopalian
parish of St. Paul's, in Detroit, November 22, 1824. In 1828, his
health failing, he went to Green Bay in company with his sister Sarah,
and established an Indian mission school at the now abandoned barracks
of Camp Smith (see Note 15). During the winter of 1828-29, the United
States government granted a small tract of land for the purpose, and
the Domestic and Foreign Missionary Society of his church erected
suitable buildings thereon. In 1838 the Cadles withdrew from the
work, which had not met with great success. The Indians were either
indifferent to the scheme or bitterly opposed to it, objecting to rigid
discipline being applied to their children. The French also disliked
the enterprise, both because it was a Protestant mission and because
it did not accord with their notions of the fitness of things. Solomon
Juneau, the founder of Milwaukee, once wrote: "As to the little savages
whom you ask about for Mr. Cadle, I have spoken to several, and they
tell me with satisfaction that they are much happier in their present
situation than in learning geography." Mr. Cadle suffered greatly in
health because of the ceaseless worry of his untenable position; but no
doubt many of his troubles were the result of his own highly nervous
temperament. The mission was carried on by others until 1840, and then

21 (page 21).--Reference is here made to Ursula M. Grignon, daughter
of Louis Grignon, a Green Bay fur-trader, and grandson of Charles de
Langlade, the first permanent white settler in Wisconsin. Later, Miss
Grignon returned to her family at Green Bay, where she died February
22, 1887.

22 (page 22).--Elizabeth Thérèse Baird was born at Prairie du Chien,
April 24, 1810, a daughter of Henry Munro Fisher, a prominent Scotch
fur-trader in the employ of the American Fur Company. On her mother's
side she was a descendant of an Ottawa chief, Kewaniquot (Returning
Cloud), and related to Madame Laframboise (see Note 7). Marrying Henry
S. Baird, a young lawyer of Mackinac Island, in 1824, when but fourteen
years of age, the couple at once took up their residence at Green Bay.
Baird was the first regularly trained legal practitioner in Wisconsin,
and attained considerable prominence in the political life of the new
territory. He died in 1875. Mrs. Baird was one of the most remarkable
pioneer women of the Northwest; she was of charming personality and
excellent education, proud of her trace of Indian blood, and had a
wide acquaintance with the principal men and women of early Wisconsin.
Her reminiscences, published in vols. xiv and xv of the _Wisconsin
Historical Collections_, are as interesting and valuable of their kind
as _Wau-Bun_ itself. She died at Green Bay, November 5, 1890.

23 (page 23).--Mrs. Samuel W. Beall. Her husband was a lawyer from
Virginia, and she a niece of Fenimore Cooper, the novelist. In 1835,
the Bealls, who were prominent in the social life of Green Bay, became
rich through land speculation, but subsequently lost the greater
part of their fortune. Beall was shot dead, in the Far West, in some
border disturbance, and his wife devoted the remainder of her life to
charitable work.

24 (page 25)--Major David Emanuel Twiggs was born in Georgia, and
entered the army as captain of infantry in 1812. He became major
of the Twenty-eighth Infantry in 1814; lieutenant-colonel of the
Fourth Infantry in 1831; colonel of the Second Dragoons in 1836;
brigadier-general in June, 1846; and for gallant and meritorious
conduct at Monterey was brevetted major-general in September of
the same year. Twiggs was dismissed the service in March, 1861,
having while on command in the South surrendered army stores to the
Confederates. He served as major-general in the Confederate army from

25 (page 27).--Wife of Lewis Cass, then governor of Michigan.

26 (page 27).--Charles Réaume was born of good family about 1752, at La
Prairie, opposite Montreal. In 1778 we find him at Detroit as a captain
in the British Indian department, in which capacity he accompanied
Lieutenant-Governor Henry Hamilton in the expedition against Vincennes
in December of that year. When George Rogers Clark captured Vincennes
in the following February, Réaume was among the prisoners, but was
allowed to return to Detroit upon parole. He appears to have settled at
Green Bay about 1790, and it is thought received his first commission
as justice of the peace from the British authorities at Detroit. About
1801 he received a similar appointment from William Henry Harrison,
then governor of Indiana Territory, of which what is now Wisconsin was
then a part. In 1818, Governor Cass, of Michigan Territory, appointed
him one of the associate justices for Brown County, of which Green Bay
was the seat. In the same year he removed to Little Kaukaulin, ten
miles up Fox River from Green Bay, and there engaged in trade with the
Indians, in the course of which he fell into drunken habits. In the
spring of 1822 he was found dead in his lonely cabin. He was unmarried.
Réaume, as stated by Mrs. Kinzie, administered justice in a primitive
fashion. During much of his career as a petty magistrate, he was the
only civil officer west of Lake Michigan. Ungoverned by statutes or
by supervision, he married, divorced, even baptized, his people at
will, and was notary and general clerical functionary for the entire
population, white and red. He is one of the picturesque characters in
Wisconsin history.

27 (page 28).--The father of Nicholas Boilvin was a resident of Quebec
during the American Revolution. Upon the declaration of peace, Nicholas
went to the Northwest, and engaged in the Indian trade. He obtained
from the United States government the position of Indian agent, and
in 1810 went to Prairie du Chien. In 1814, when the British attacked
that post, Boilvin and his family, with other Americans, retired to a
gunboat in the Mississippi River and fled to St. Louis. In addition
to his Indian agency, Boilvin was a justice of the peace, his first
commission being issued by the authorities of Illinois Territory in
1809. He died in the summer of 1827 on a Mississippi River keel-boat,
while en route for St. Louis. At one time he furnished the war
department with a Winnebago vocabulary.

28 (page 29).--For other Canadian boat-songs, see _Hunt's Merchants'
Magazine_, vol. iii, p. 189; Bela Hubbard's _Memorials of a Half
Century_, and Ernest Gagnon's _Chanson Populaires du Canada_.

29 (page 30).--The Grignon family are prominently identified with
Wisconsin pioneer history. Their progenitor was Pierre, who had been
a _voyageur_ on Lake Superior at an early date, and an independent
fur-trader at Green Bay before 1763. For his second wife he married
Louise Domitilde, a daughter of Charles de Langlade, the first
permanent settler of Wisconsin (about 1750). By her, Pierre Grignon had
nine children--Pierre Antoine (1777), Charles (1779), Augustin (1780),
Louis (1783), Jean Baptiste (1785), Domitilde (1787), Marguerite
(1789), Hippolyte (1790), and Amable (1795). The elder Pierre died
at Green Bay in 1795, his widow subsequently marrying Jean Baptiste
Langevin. Of the sons of Pierre Grignon, most won prominence as
fur-traders--Augustin, whose valuable "Seventy-Two Years' Recollections
of Wisconsin" are given in vol. iii of _Wisconsin Historical
Collections_, is best known to students of Western history.

30 (page 31).--Variously spelled in contemporary documents, Grand
Kaccalin, Cacalin, Cockolin, Kackalin, Kakalin, and Kokolow; but later
crystallized into Kaukauna, the name of the modern manufacturing town
now situated upon the banks of this rapid. Dominic Du Charme was the
first white settler there (1793), being followed by Augustin Grignon
(1812). A Presbyterian Indian mission was established at the place in
1822 (see Note 31).

31 (page 32).--Rev. Cutting Marsh was born in Danville, Vt., July 20,
1800. Prepared for college at Phillips Academy, Andover, Mass., he
graduated from Dartmouth in 1826, and from Andover Theological Seminary
in 1829. In October, 1829, he departed for the Northwest as missionary
to the Stockbridge Indians, in the employ both of the American Board
of Commissioners for Foreign Missions and the Society in Scotland for
Propagating Christian Knowledge. The Stockbridges were originally a New
England tribe who had been moved to New York. In 1822-23, along with
Oneidas, Munsees, and Brothertowns, they went to the Fox River Valley
in Wisconsin. The mission to the Stockbridges was first established at
what is now South Kaukauna (see Note 30), and was called Statesburg;
later (1832), it was moved to Calumet County, east of Lake Winnebago,
the new village being called Stockbridge. Their first missionary in
Wisconsin was Jesse Miner, who died in 1829. Marsh served from 1830-48;
thereafter he was an itinerant Presbyterian missionary in northern
Wisconsin, and died at Waupaca July 4, 1873. Marsh's letter-books
and journals, a rich mine of pioneer church annals, are now in the
archives of the Wisconsin Historical Society; his annual reports to the
Scottish Society were published in Vol. XV of the _Wisconsin Historical
Collections_. They bear a curious resemblance in matter and style to
the _Jesuit Relations_ of New France, in the seventeenth century.

32 (page 32).--Rev. Eleazer Williams was an Episcopalian missionary
to the Oneida Indians, some of whom moved to Wisconsin from New York
in 1821-22. In 1853, Williams, who was imbued with a passion for
notoriety, suddenly posed before the American public as Louis XVII.,
hereditary sovereign of France, claiming to be that son of Louis XVI.
and Marie Antoinette who was officially reported to have died in prison
after his parents had been beheaded by the Paris revolutionists.
Although he was too young by eight years to be the lost dauphin, was
clearly of Indian origin, was stoutly claimed by his dusky parents,
and every allegation of his in regard to the matter was soon exposed
as false, many persons of romantic temperament believed his story, and
there are those who still stoutly maintain that his pretensions were
well founded. Williams died in 1858, discredited by his church, but
persisting in his absurd claims to the last. A considerable literature
has sprung up relative to this controversy, pro and con; the most
exhaustive account is W. W. Wight's monograph, Parkman Club _Papers_
(Milwaukee), No. 7.

33 (page 40).--Petit Butte des Morts (little hill of the dead) is a
considerable eminence rising from the shores of the Fox River in the
western outskirts of the present city of Menasha; a widening of the
river at this point bears the name of the _butte_. The hill, still a
striking feature of the landscape, although much reduced from railway
and other excavations, commanded the river for several miles in either
direction, and appears to have been used in early days as the site of
an Indian fort; as such, it was probably the scene of several notable
encounters during the Fox War, in the first third of the eighteenth
century. Because of these traditions, and the existence of a large
Indian mound on its summit, it was long supposed by whites that the
entire hill was a gigantic earthwork, reared to bury as well as to
commemorate the thousands of Indians whom the French are alleged to
have here slain. But this is now known to be mere fancy; the hill is
of glacial origin, although no doubt it was at one time used as an
Indian cemetery. Grand Butte des Morts, upon the upper waters of the
Fox River, above the present Oshkosh, has similar traditions as to its
inception, but is of like character; and does not appear to have been
the scene of any important fight.

34 (page 45).--The present Island Park, an Oshkosh summer resort.

35 (page 46).--See Gardner P. Stickney's "Use of Maize by Wisconsin
Indians," Parkman Club _Papers_, No. 13. This contains numerous
bibliographical citations. An exhaustive treatise on the use of wild
rice among the northern tribes, by Alfred E. Jenks, will soon be
published by the American Bureau of Ethnology.

36 (page 48).--John Lawe, whose father was an officer in the British
army. John came to Green Bay in 1797, when but sixteen years old, as
assistant to his uncle, Jacob Franks, an English Jew, who represented
at Green Bay the fur-trade firm of Ogilvie, Gillespie & Co., of
Montreal. On the outbreak of the War of 1812-15, Franks returned to
Montreal, turning over his large business to Lawe, who was, until his
death in 1846, one of the leading citizens of Green Bay; not only
conducting a large fur trade, but serving the public as magistrate and
in other capacities.

37 (page 49).--Jacques Porlier, a leading fur-trader, and chief justice
of Brown County court. He was a business partner of Augustin Grignon.

38 (page 52).--The Sacs and Foxes maintained an important confederacy
for about a hundred years, reaching between the routing of the Foxes
by the French, in the first third of the eighteenth century, and the
decimation of the Sacs by the Americans in the Black Hawk War (1832).

39 (page 52).--This is incorrect. The French popularly called the
Winnebagoes "Puants" (stinkards), a term long supposed to be a literal
translation of _Winepegou_, the name given this tribe by its neighbors.
But later investigation proves that Winepegou meant "men from the fetid
water," or "the fetids." At first, these people were called by the
French, "Tribe of the Sea," because it was thought that salt-water must
be meant by the term "fetid." As the continent was not then thought
to be as wide as it has since proved to be, the early French inferred
that the Winnebagoes must live on or near the ocean, and might be
Chinese. When Champlain sent Jean Nicolet to make a treaty with the
Winnebagoes, he equipped the latter with an ambassadorial costume
suitable for meeting mandarins. Nicolet was much disappointed to find
them at Green Bay, merely naked savages. Baye des Puans (or Puants) was
the French name for Green Bay, until well into the eighteenth century.
It is now thought that the Winnebagoes came to Wisconsin from the Lake
Winnipeg region, and obtained their name from sulphur springs in the
neighborhood of which they had lived. They are an outcast branch of the
Dakotan stock.

40 (page 54).--Alexander Seymour Hooe was born in Virginia, and
graduated from West Point Military Academy in 1827. At the time of Mrs.
Kinzie's visit, he was a first lieutenant in the Fifth Infantry; he
was made a captain in July, 1838. In 1846 he was brevetted major for
gallant and distinguished conduct at Palo Alto and Resaca de la Palma,
and died December 9, 1847.

41 (page 57).--Pierre Paquette, local agent of the American Fur
Company, and government interpreter. He was a French half-breed, and
attained wide reputation because of his enormous strength and his
almost despotic control over the Winnebagoes, to whom he was related.

42 (page 59).--Reference is here made to Jefferson Davis, at this time
second lieutenant in the First Infantry.

43 (page 60).--This portage was the one used by Joliet and Marquette
in their expedition towards the Mississippi in 1673, and thereafter
persistently followed as one of the chief pathways to the Mississippi,
by French, English, and Americans in turn, until the decline of the fur
trade, about 1840. A government canal now connects the two rivers at
this point; but it is seldom used, for the upper Fox is very shallow,
and the Wisconsin is beset with shifting sandbars, so that few steam
craft can now successfully navigate these waters, except at seasons of

44 (page 63).--Old Decorah (sometimes called "Grey-headed" Decorah, or
De Kauray) was a village chief of the Winnebagoes, who served in the
British campaign against Sandusky in 1813. At the time of his death,
soon after Mrs. Kinzie's visit, he was popularly alleged to be one
hundred and forty-three years old.

45 (page 64).--Robert A. Forsyth, an army paymaster, long engaged in
the Indian department. He died October 21, 1849.

46 (page 65).--Kawneeshaw (White Crow), sometimes called "The Blind,"
was a civil chief and orator of the Winnebagoes. His village was on
Lake Koshkonong. White Crow's devotion to the whites, during the Black
Hawk War, was open to suspicion; like most of his tribe, he was but a
fair-weather ally.

47 (page 65).--Dandy was the son of Black Wolf, a Winnebago village
chief. He died at Peten Well, on the Wisconsin River, near Necedah, in
1870, aged about seventy-seven years.

48 (page 71).--Stephen Hempstead, a Revolutionary soldier who had
served as a sergeant in the company of Captain Nathan Hale, moved from
Connecticut to St. Louis in 1811. His daughter Susan was married to
Henry Gratiot, a leading settler in the Wisconsin-Illinois lead region.
Hempstead had two sons, living at Galena, who attained prominence among
the pioneers of the lead region, Edward being a commission merchant and
lead-ore shipper, and Charles a lawyer of distinction. It is uncertain
as to which of these two is meant by Mrs. Kinzie.

49 (page 72).--Joseph M. Street was born in Virginia, about 1780.
Emigrating to Kentucky in 1805-6, he published the _Western World_
at Frankfort, and took a conspicuous part in political controversy.
In 1812 he became one of the first settlers of Shawnee-town. Ill. As
a result of his efforts as a Whig partisan, he obtained in 1827 an
appointment to the Winnebago Indian agency at Prairie du Chien, at a
salary of $1,200 per year, to succeed Nicholas Boilvin (see Note 27).
It was to him, as agent, that Winnebago spies delivered up Black Hawk
in 1832. In November, 1836, he was ordered to open a Sac and Fox agency
at Rock Island; and in the fall of 1837 accompanied Keokuk, Wapello,
Black Hawk, and other Indian chiefs and head men to Washington. He
died in office, May 5, 1840, at Agency City, on the Des Moines River,
Wapello County, Iowa. His military title came from a commission as
brigadier-general in the Illinois militia, which he held for a brief

50 (page 75).--Yellow Thunder, a Winnebago war chief, had his winter
camp at Yellow Banks, on Fox River, about five miles below Berlin, and
his summer camp about sixteen miles above Portage, on the Wisconsin
River. In the War of 1812-15, he took part with his tribe on the side
of the British. He died near Portage, in February, 1874, at the alleged
age of over one hundred years.

51 (page 88).--Richard M. Johnson was born in Kentucky in 1780. From
1807-19 he was a member of Congress from that State. In 1813 he raised
a volunteer cavalry regiment, of which he was colonel, to serve under
General William Henry Harrison. He distinguished himself at the battle
of the Thames, and was long thought to have killed Tecumseh by his own
hand; but to this doubtful honor he was probably unentitled. Appointed
an Indian commissioner in 1814, he was early in the region of the upper
Mississippi; he is known to have been at Prairie du Chien in 1819. In
that year he left the lower house of Congress to go into the Senate,
where he served until 1829. He was then re-elected to the house, in
which he held a seat until 1837, when he was elected Vice-President of
the United States. He died in Frankfort, November 19, 1850, while a
member of the Kentucky legislature. Johnson had the reputation of being
a courageous, kind-hearted, and talented man.

52 (page 95).--Apparently a son of François Roy, a Portage fur-trader.

53 (page 102).--Lake Kegonsa, or First Lake, in the well-known Four
Lakes chain. These lakes are numbered upward, towards the headwaters.
Among early settlers they are still known by the numbers given them by
the federal surveyors; but about 1856, Lyman C. Draper, then secretary
of the Wisconsin Historical Society, gave them the Indian names which
they now bear on the maps--Kegonsa (First), Waubesa (Second), Monona
(Third), and Mendota (Fourth). A fifth lake, called Wingra, also abuts
Madison, but is not in the regular chain.

54 (page 104).--Colonel James Morrison, who had in 1828 started a
trading establishment at what was called Morrison's (or Porter's)
Grove, nine miles from Blue Mounds. Later, Morrison became one of the
first settlers of Madison, where for many years he kept a hotel.

55 (page 107).--Rev. Aratus Kent was born at Suffield, Conn., January
15, 1794, and graduated from Yale in 1816. After serving pulpits in the
East, he was, in March, 1829, assigned to Galena, Ill., by the American
Home Missionary Society, having previously asked the society "for a
place so hard that no one else would take it." He organized at Galena
the first Presbyterian church in the lead mines, and there labored
zealously until December, 1848, when he withdrew to other fields. He
died November 8, 1869.

56 (page 107).--The villages and hunting and fishing grounds of the
Indians were connected by a network of such trails through the forests
and over the prairies. Many of the most important of these were no
doubt originally made by buffalo, in their long journeys between
pastures, or in their migrations westward in advance of oncoming
settlement. The buffalo traces were followed by the Indians upon their
hunts; and the best passes over both the Alleghanies and Rockies were
first discovered and trod by these indigenous cattle. The natural
evolution has been: First the buffalo trace, then the Indian trail,
next the pioneer's path, broadened and straightened at last for wagons,
then the military road, or the plank-road, and finally the railroad.
Broadly speaking, the continent has been spanned by this means. There
are still discoverable, in isolated portions of the Middle West,
remains of a few of the most important of the old Indian trails, such
as have not been adapted into white men's roads.

57 (page 112).--William Stephen Hamilton, the sixth child of the famous
Alexander Hamilton, was born August 4, 1797. In 1814 young Hamilton
entered the West Point Military Academy, but resigned in 1817, having
received an appointment on the staff of Colonel William Rector, then
surveyor-general of Illinois, Missouri, and Arkansas. He appears to
have resigned after a few years of service, and sought his fortune
in what is now Wisconsin. We first hear of him in Wisconsin in 1825,
when he bought a herd of cattle in Illinois and drove them overland to
Green Bay, via Chicago, for sale to the garrison at the former place.
Two years later he appeared in the lead mines, toward which was then
a heavy emigration, and settled at and founded what is now Wiota, La
Fayette County. He at once took high rank among the mine operators
of the region. In 1827 he commanded a company of volunteers in the
Red Bird uprising, and during the Black Hawk War (1832) commanded a
company of rangers. Emigrating to California in 1850, enticed thither
by the gold excitement, he settled on a large ranch near Red Bluff,
Tehama County, where he died about 1865. At first buried upon the
ranch, his remains were later removed to Sacramento, but the exact
location of the grave is now unknown. While at Wiota he was visited by
his aged mother and one of his sisters, then residing at Washington,
D. C. By his Wisconsin contemporaries, Hamilton was ranked as a
profound thinker; but his ambition to become a member of the state
constitutional convention failed, because his views were thought to be
too aristocratic to enable him to be a wise law-maker for a frontier
commonwealth. His various business enterprises were unfortunate in
their result.

58 (page 115).--The Pecatonica River.

59 (page 118).--Buffalo Grove was a small settlement, commenced about
1827-28 by O. W. Kellogg, ten miles north from Dixon's Ferry, on the
Galena road, or Kellogg's Trail; so called, because, in 1827, Kellogg
first opened this path from Peoria to the Galena lead mines. The trail
originally crossed the Rock River a few miles above the present Dixon;
but in 1828 was diverted to the site of what at first was called
Dixon's Ferry, but later was abbreviated to Dixon's, and finally to

60 (page 119).--John Dixon was born in Rye, Westchester County, N. Y.,
October 9, 1784. For several years he was a tailor and clothier in
New York City; but in 1820 emigrated to the West for the benefit of
his health. Settling near Springfield, Ill., he at first held several
public offices. He went to Peoria County as recorder of deeds--Galena
and Chicago being then included in territory attached to that new
county for administrative purposes. Taking the contract, in 1828, for
carrying the mail between Peoria and Galena, he induced Joseph Ogee,
a French Canadian half-breed, to establish a ferry at the Rock River
crossing (see Note 59). But two years later he bought out Ogee and
settled at the ferry himself, trading with the Indians, speculating in
wild lands, carrying the mail, and in general taking a prominent part
in pioneer enterprises. He died at Dixon, July 9, 1876.

61 (page 121).--The most important aboriginal highway was the great Sac
trail, extending in almost an air-line across the state, from Black
Hawk's village, at the mouth of Rock River, to the south shore of
Lake Michigan, and then through Michigan to Maiden, Canada. Over this
deep-beaten path, portions of which are still visible. Black Hawk's
band made frequent visits to the British Indian agency at Maiden.

62 (page 140).--The first Fort Dearborn was built in the summer and
autumn of 1803, by a company of regulars under command of Captain
John Whistler. See description and illustration in Blanchard's _The
Northwest and Chicago_ (Chicago, 1898), vol. i, pp. 333-336. This fort
was destroyed by Indians in 1812, at the time of the massacre. A new
fort was built on the same spot in 1816. A portion of the officers'
quarters in this second fort was still in existence in 1881.

63 (page 141).--Jean Baptiste Beaubien came to Chicago in 1817, as
local agent for Conant & Mack, a Detroit firm of fur-traders. A few
months later his employers sold out to the American Fur Company,
and Beaubien was displaced. He continued to reside at Chicago,
however, where he acquired considerable property, and married Josette
Laframboise, a French Ottawa half-breed, who had worked in John
Kinzie's family before the massacre. Several descendants of this couple
still reside in Chicago.

64 (page 143).--Mark Beaubien was a brother of Jean Baptiste. The
latter induced him to come to Chicago, from Detroit, in 1826. He at
once opened a small tavern, which by 1831 had grown to the dimensions
described by Mrs. Kinzie; it was named Sauganash Hotel. Mark was the
father of twenty-three children, sixteen by his first wife and seven by
his second.

65 (page 145).--Jonathan N. Bailey was appointed postmaster of Chicago,
March 31, 1831.

Stephen Forbes opened a private school there in June, 1830, assisted by
his wife, Elvira; they taught about twenty-five scholars in the simple
branches of English.

Hurlbut, in his _Chicago Antiquities_ (1881, p. 349), says that
Kercheval was merely a clerk for Robert Kinzie, not an independent

John Stephen Coats Hogan was born in New York City, February 5, 1805,
or 1806; his father, an Irishman, was a teacher of languages in New
York, who had married a French-Canadian woman. Early in his youth, John
was adopted by a Detroit family, and upon reaching maturity went into
trade. He had arrived in Chicago as early as 1830, being that year
elected a justice of the peace. He appears to have been a partner of
the Messrs. Brewster, Detroit fur-traders, and in connection with his
business conducted the sutler's store at Fort Dearborn. In 1832, while
postmaster of Chicago, he served as a lieutenant of militia in the
Black Hawk War. He was in California in 1849, and died at Boonville,
Mo., in 1868.

William Lee was not an ordained minister; he was a blacksmith by trade,
and an exhorter of the Methodist church. He was at the Calumet as early
as 1830, for in that year he was granted a right to maintain a ferry
there; but later in the year he was listed as a voter in Chicago. Lee
was first clerk of the commissioners' court of Cook County in 1831-32.
He removed to the rapids of Root River in 1835; but subsequently went
to Iowa County, Wis., dying at Pulaski in 1858.

66 (page 146).--The name is found, with many variants, on some of the
earliest French maps. In 1718, James Logan describes it in detail, in
a communication to the English Board of Trade; and it figures on the
English maps of that period as the "land carriage of Chekakou."

67 (page 146).--Father of John H. Kinzie, the author's husband.

68 (page 150).--It was early discovered by the French traders that a
strong current encircles Lake Michigan, going south along the west
shore, and returning northward along the east shore. For this reason
boats usually followed the Wisconsin bank up, and the Michigan bank

69 (page 197).--Billy Caldwell (Sauganash), an educated half-breed, and
in his later years a leading chief of the united Ottawas, Chippewas,
and Pottawattomies, was private secretary to Tecumseh at the council of
Greenville. In 1816 he was a captain in the British Indian department;
in 1826 a justice of the peace in Chicago; in 1832 an efficient friend
of the whites during the Black Hawk War, yet nevertheless devoted to
the interests of his people. He died at Council Bluffs in 1841, still
claiming to be a British subject.

Alexander Robinson was a Pottawattomie chief, much respected by the
whites. He long lived at Casenovia, on the Desplaines River, about
twelve miles north-west of Chicago.

Shaubena (Shabonee, Shaubeenay, etc.), was an Ottawa by parentage,
being born on the Kankakee River in what is now Will County, Ill.
He married into the Pottawattomie tribe, and became its principal
chief. He aided Tecumseh, and was in the Thames battle; but thereafter
devoted his energies to preserving peace between the races. As a
consequence, he greatly angered hostile chiefs, and in 1827 was for a
time a prisoner in the camp of Big Foot, the Pottawattomie chief at
Big Foot Lake (now Lake Geneva). During the Black Hawk War, Shaubena
was successful in keeping the majority of the Pottawattomies and
Winnebagoes from active participation, thereby rendering very valuable
service to the white settlers. He frequently visited Washington on
business for his tribe, and always received marked attention both there
and in the West. Shaubena died at his home on the Illinois River, two
miles above Seneca, July 17, 1859, aged eighty-four years.

70 (page 200).--Reference is here made to the treaty concluded at
St. Louis, August 24, 1816, with "the united tribes of the Ottawas,
Chippewas, and Pottawattomies, residing on the Illinois and Melwakee
rivers and their waters, and on the southwestern parts of Lake

71 (page 200).--Treaties were held with the Pottawattomies in 1836,
at Turkey Creek (March 26), Tippecanoe River (March 29 and April 11),
Indian Agency (April 22), Yellow River (August 5), and Chippewanaung
(September 20-23). The principal object of all was to secure the
emigration of the tribe to the west of the Mississippi within two years.

72 (page 200).--In 1827, Congress granted alternate sections of land
for six miles on each side of the line to aid in building the canal
between Lake Michigan and the Illinois River. One of these alternates
was section 9, town 39 north, range 13 east, embracing what is now
the Chicago business center. In 1830, the canal commissioners--Doctor
Jayne, Edmund Roberts, and Charles Dunn--proceeded to lay out a town
site upon this section; they employed for this purpose James Thompson,
a St. Louis surveyor; his plat covered about three-eighths of the
square mile. These commissioners named the original streets. The
north and south streets they called State, Dearborn, Clark, La Salle,
Wells, Franklin, Market, Canal, Clinton, Jefferson, and Desplaines;
the east and west streets named by them were Kinzie, Carroll, Water,
Lake, Randolph, Washington, and Madison. Many lots were sold at auction
in the first year, prices running from sixty to two hundred dollars.
The section immediately south was No. 16---the section granted by
the general government in every township as an endowment for public
education. Many wise citizens desired this school section reserved
from sale until neighboring settlement had brought up the price; but
land speculators secured the early sale of the lots, and the resulting
educational endowment was meager.

73 (page 202).--Martin Scott was born in Vermont, and entered the
army as a second lieutenant in 1814. In 1828 he was commissioned
captain of the Fifth Infantry, the post he was filling at the time of
which our author speaks. He was made major of his regiment in June,
1846, in recognition of gallant conduct at Palo Alto and Resaca de la
Palma; in September following he was brevetted lieutenant-colonel for
notable services in the several conflicts at Monterey, and was killed
September 8, 1847, in the battle of Molino del Rey. Captain Scott was
an eccentric character, of the misanthropic type, well known throughout
the country as an expert marksman; he had obtained his training among
the sharpshooters of the Green Mountains. His devotion to the chase
partook of the nature of a craze. At the various posts where he was
stationed, he maintained numerous kennels for his blooded dogs; those
at Fort Howard were pagoda-shaped, and presented so striking an
appearance that the little village of dog-houses was popularly styled
"Scott's four-legged brigade quarters."

74 (page 211).--Sir John Johnson, son and heir of the celebrated Sir
William. When a mere boy, during the Revolutionary War, he led the
Mohawks in forays against the New York settlers. After the war he was
made superintendent-general of Indian affairs in British North America,
and a colonel in the militia of Lower Canada. He died at Montreal,
January 4, 1830, with the rank of major-general.

75 (page 227) The troops were withdrawn from Fort Dearborn May 20,
1831; the post was re-occupied June 17, 1832, on account of the Black
Hawk uprising.

76 (page 238).--This is the Fox River of the Illinois; not to be
confounded with the Fox River of Green Bay.

77 (page 246).--Amos Foster was born in New Hampshire, and was
appointed second lieutenant in the Second Infantry, July 1, 1828. While
stationed at Fort Howard he was killed by a private soldier named
Doyle, February 7, 1832. The details of the tragedy are given by our
author upon pp. 341-343, _post_.

78 (page 249). [TN: Note 78 missing from this edition.]

79 (page 251).--The site of Beloit, Wis. This was a favorite camp of
the Turtle band of Winnebagoes.

80 (page 252).--Reference is here made to the fact that for several
weeks, in 1832, Black Hawk's party of Sac refugees dwelt upon the
shores of Lake Koshkonong. Some interesting prehistoric earthworks
surround the lake, showing that its banks were populated with
aborigines from the earliest times.

81 (page 256).--See Note 53.

82 (page 259).--See Note 24.

83 (page 260).--See Andrew J. Turner's "History of Fort Winnebago," in
_Wisconsin Historical Collections_, Vol. xiv; it contains illustrations
of the fort, the Indian Agency, etc., and portraits of several of the
principal military officers.

84 (page 266).--Reverend Samuel Carlo Mazzuchelli was born in Milan,
Italy, November 4, 1807, of an old and wealthy family. Becoming a
Dominican friar, he emigrated to Cincinnati in 1828, and two years
later was stationed at Mackinac. Being appointed commissary-general of
his order in the country west of Lake Michigan, he devoted ten years to
constant travel through what are now Wisconsin and Iowa, establishing
churches and schools. In 1843 he revisited Italy to raise funds for
an academy at Sinsinawa Mound, Wis.; seven years later this developed
into the provincial house of the Sisters of St. Dominic. The rest of
his life was spent as teacher here, and as parish priest for the large
neighborhood. He died in 1864, as the result of responding to distant
sick-calls. Mazzuchelli was a man of broad, generous temperament, and
in every way a worthy pioneer of the cross. In 1844 he published at
Milan, a now rare volume devoted to his experiences in the American

85 (page 269).--See Note 44.

86 (page 272).--See Note 41.

87 (page 273).--By the treaty of November 3, 1804, the Sacs and Foxes,
for the paltry sum of $1,000, ceded to the United States Government
50,000,000 acres of land in what are now Missouri, Illinois, and
Wisconsin; this tract included the lead region. Unfortunately, the
Indians were given permission to remain in the ceded territory until
the lands were sold to settlers. This privilege was the seed of the
Black Hawk War. Most of the Sac and Fox villages moved to the west
of the Mississippi River during the first quarter of the century.
Black Hawk's band, living at the mouth of Rock River, alone remained.
Settlement gradually encroached on them, and squatters sought to
oust the Indians from the alluvial river-bottom. Black Hawk did not
consider the squatters as legitimate settlers, and when they persisted
for several seasons in destroying his cornfields, stealing his crops,
and physically maltreating his people, he threatened vengeance. This
led, in 1831, to Governor John Reynolds, of Illinois, calling out
the militia, and in June making a demonstration before Black Hawk's
village. The Sacs thereupon withdrew to the west of the Mississippi,
and promised to remain there. But discouraged by lack of food, and
encouraged by promise of help from the Winnebagoes and Pottawattomies
of Illinois, Black Hawk recrossed the river at Yellow Banks, below
Rock Island, on April 6, 1832. Governor Reynolds again called out
the militia, and secured the aid of United States troops from Fort
Armstrong. The Black Hawk War ensued, ending disastrously for the Sac
leader and his people.

88 (page 274).--French-Canadian _patois_, so called, is but the
seventeenth-century speech of Normandy and Brittany, with some local
color derived from the Indians and the new conditions of the frontier.
It is a mistake to term this survival a rude dialect, as is so often
done by those English-speaking people who have learned only the modern
and somewhat artificial French of Paris and the Academy.

89 (page 275).--See Note 20.

90 (page 281).--Mrs. Kinzie here corrects a popular misconception
regarding the division of labor in an aboriginal household. In a
primitive stage, the Indian male of proper age and normal strength
devoted himself to the chase, to war, and the council, leaving to the
females the care of the household, which included the cultivation of
crops and the carrying of burdens. Aiding the females were those males
who were too young, or otherwise incapacitated for the arduous duties
of the warrior; also, slaves taken or bought from other tribes. Before
whites or strangers of their own race, the Indian warrior disdained to
be seen at menial occupations; but in the privacy of his own people he
not infrequently assisted his women.

91 (page 285).--See Note 27.

92 (page 303).--Daniel Whitney arrived at Green Bay in 1816, and was
the founder of Navarino (1830), on the site of the modern city of Green
Bay. He conducted an extensive fur trade in Wisconsin and Minnesota,
built numerous sawmills on Wisconsin waters, developed the shot-making
industry at Helena, Wis., and in many fields was one of the most
enterprising pioneers of Wisconsin.

Miss Henshaw was a sister of Mrs. Whitney.

Miss Brush was visiting her relative, Charles Brush, a resident of
Green Bay.

93 (page 305).--Colonel Samuel C. Stambaugh was Indian agent at
Green Bay in 1831-32. He had been a country newspaper publisher in
Pennsylvania, and received the office as a reward for political
services. The Senate refused confirmation of his appointment, and he
was withdrawn from the agency. He however served the department for
four or five years more as a special agent, when he retired from public

94 (page 306).--The name De Pere comes from _rapides des pères_,
referring to the early Jesuit mission (1671-87), at this the first
obstruction in ascending the Fox River. The modern manufacturing city
of De Pere lies on both sides of the rapids, about four miles above the
city of Green Bay. A memorial tablet of bronze was dedicated by the
Wisconsin Historical Society on the site of Father Allouez's mission at
De Pere, in September, 1899.

95 (page 307).--See Note 30.

96 (page 307).--Grand Butte des Morts, above Lake Winnebago, is meant;
the party had gone overland from Green Bay, and struck across country
to the south-west of Doty's Island.

James Knaggs was a Pottawattomie half-breed, who in 1835 became
ferryman, tavern-keeper, and fur-trader in a small way at Coon's Point,
Algoma, now in the city limits of Oshkosh. This was the year before the
arrival of Webster Stanley, the first white settler of Oshkosh.

97 (page 312).--Bellefontaine was the name of a farm and wayside tavern
owned by Pierre Paquette, the Portage half-breed fur-trader. At this
farm the specialty was live-stock, as Paquette had the government
contract for supplying most of the beef and horses to the Winnebago

98 (page 314).--Doctor William Beaumont was an army surgeon. While
stationed at Mackinac, in 1822, he was called to treat a young man
named Alexis St. Martin, who had received a gunshot wound in his left
side. The wound healed, but there remained a fistulous opening into
the stomach, two and a half inches in diameter, through which Beaumont
could watch the process of digestion. His experiments regarding the
digestibility of different kinds of food, and the properties of the
gastric juice, were continued through several years--indeed, until
Beaumont's death (1853); but the first publication of results was made
in 1833, and at once gave Beaumont an international reputation among
scientists. Through several years, Beaumont (who resigned from the army
in 1839) was stationed at Fort Crawford, where many of his experiments
were conducted.

99 (page 318).--Joseph Crélie was the father-in-law of Pierre Paquette.
He had been a _voyageur_ and small fur-trader at Prairie du Chien as
early as 1791, and in the early coming of the whites (about 1836)
obtained much notoriety from claiming to be of phenomenal age. He died
at Caledonia, Wis., in 1865, at a time when he asserted himself to be
one hundred and thirty years old; but a careful inquiry has resulted in
establishing his years at one hundred.

100 (page 318).--General Henry Atkinson, in charge of the regular
troops in the pursuit of Black Hawk (1832), had followed the Sac leader
to Lake Koshkonong. On the night of July 1 he commenced throwing up
breastworks at the junction of the Bark with the Rock River. These were
surmounted by a stockade. The rude fort was soon abandoned in the chase
of Black Hawk to the west; but the site was chosen in 1836 for the home
of the first settler of the modern city of Fort Atkinson, Wis.

101 (page 321).--Now called Baraboo River.

102 (page 322).--David Hunter, a native of the District of Columbia,
was then first lieutenant in the Fifth Infantry. He became captain of
the First Dragoons in 1833, and was made major and paymaster in 1842.
On the outbreak of the War of Secession he was at first appointed
colonel of the Sixth Cavalry; but later, in 1861, was commissioned as
major-general of volunteers. Because of gallant and meritorious service
in the battle of Piedmont, and during the campaign in the Valley of
Virginia, he was brevetted major-general. He retired from the service
in July, 1866.

103 (page 323).--Charles Gratiot, the father of Henry, was born in
Lausanne, Switzerland, in 1753, the child of refugee Huguenots from
La Rochelle, France. Trained to mercantile life in London, he came to
America when not yet of age, and opened a trading-post at Mackinac,
visiting Green Bay and Prairie du Chien as early as 1770. He was a
wide traveler by canoe through the heart of the continent. In 1774 he
opened establishments at Cahokia and Kaskaskia, and very materially
aided General George Rogers Clark with influence and fortune, in the
latter's celebrated expeditions for the capture of the Northwest. One
of his four sons was Henry, to whom our author refers. Henry became a
leader in the development of the Wisconsin-Illinois lead mines, and was
for many years Indian agent in that district, doing good service as
such in the Red Bird (1827) and Black Hawk (1832) uprisings. He died in
Baltimore, Md., April 27, 1836.

104 (page 328).--The term "pipe" was of more general application than
this, among _voyageurs_. It referred to the occasional stoppage of
work, in rowing, when pipes would be refilled, and perhaps other
refreshment taken. A canoe voyage along the lakes and rivers of the
West was measured by "pipes," which of course were more numerous going
against the current than with it. In the same manner a portage trail
was measured by the number of "pauses" necessary for resting; a rough
path having more such than a smooth, level trail.

105 (page 330).--Such huge flights of wild doves were still
occasionally to be seen in Wisconsin until about 1878. The present
writer has seen them, especially about 1868, in flocks of such size
as to darken the sun, as at a total eclipse; large fields in which
they would settle would seem to be solid masses of birds; and at night
they would roost upon trees in such numbers as to break the branches.
Farmers and pot-hunters easily killed great numbers with long sticks,
either as they rested upon the trees, or rose from the ground in
clouds, when disturbed.

106 (page 333).--See Note 31.

107 (page 337).--See Note 15.

108 (page 339).--This was during the Black Hawk War (1832). The
fleeing Sacs were retreating up Rock River, to the north-east, and
made a stand on Lake Koshkonong. The people at Green Bay were without
definite information regarding the fugitives, and their number and
capacity to do harm were greatly exaggerated. It was supposed that
they would continue going to the north-east, and seek an outlet
to Lake Michigan at Green Bay. This threw the people of the lower
valley of the Fox River into a panic, which was no less real because
ludicrous in character. See the diary during this flurry, of Cutting
Marsh, missionary to the Stockbridge Indians, in _Wisconsin Historical
Collections_, vol. xv.

109 (page 340).--General Winfield Scott had been ordered to the seat of
the Black Hawk War by way of the Great Lakes, with reinforcements for
Atkinson. Cholera among his troops had detained him first at Detroit,
then at Chicago, and lastly at Rock Island. Nearly one-fourth of his
force of a thousand regulars died with the pestilence.

110 (page 342).--Nathan Clark entered the army in 1813, as a second
lieutenant, and became a captain in the Fifth Infantry in 1824--the
rank he held at the time alluded to by Mrs. Kinzie. He was brevetted
major in 1834, for ten years' faithful service in one grade, and died
February 18, 1836. His daughter, now Mrs. Charlotte Ouisconsin Van
Cleve, is the author of a book of reminiscences, which covers much
of the ground traversed by Mrs. Kinzie, _Three Score Years and Ten_
(Minneapolis, 1888).

111 (page 343).--See Note 73.

112 (page 343).--Major Henry Dodge, afterward first territorial
governor of Wisconsin, was, during the Black Hawk War, in charge of the
Michigan militia west of Lake Michigan. Generals James D. Henry and M.
K. Alexander were in charge of brigades of Illinois volunteers. The
combined army of regulars and volunteers had followed Black Hawk to
Lake Koshkonong. While encamped there, Henry, Alexander, and Dodge had
been despatched (July 10) to Fort Winnebago for much needed provisions,
it being the nearest supply point. While they were absent, the fugitive
Sacs fled westward to the Wisconsin River. The troops followed on a hot
trail, and July 21 there ensued the battle of Wisconsin Heights, near
Prairie du Sac. Black Hawk, with sadly diminished forces, continued
his flight to the Mississippi; where, near the mouth of the Bad Ax,
occurred (August 1 and 2) the final battle of the war.

113 (page 345).--Site of the modern city of Appleton, Wis.

114 (page 349).--During the battle of Wisconsin Heights, a large party
of non-combatants in Black Hawk's party, composed mainly of women,
children, and old men, were sent down the Wisconsin River on a large
raft and in canoes borrowed from the Winnebagoes. A detachment of
regulars, sent out from Fort Crawford, fired into this party and killed
and captured many. The few who could escape to the woods were afterward
massacred by the band of Menomonee Indians of whom Mrs. Kinzie speaks;
the contingent had been organized in the neighborhood of Green Bay, by
Colonel Samuel C. Stambaugh, former Indian agent. This was the only
exploit in which Stambaugh's expedition participated, for the war was
practically ended before it arrived on the scene of action.

115 (page 353).--This refers to the so-called "battle of the Bad Ax"
(see last clause of Note 112). Black Hawk endeavored to surrender, but
the party of regulars on the steamer "Warrior" disregarded his white
flag, and he was caught between the land forces under Atkinson and the
fire of the steamer. The Indians were shot down like rats in a trap;
and those who finally managed to swim across the Mississippi, under
cover of the islands, were set upon by the Sioux, who had been inspired
to this slaughter by the authorities at Fort Crawford. The Black Hawk
War, from beginning to end, is a serious blot on the history of our
Indian relations.

116 (page 353).--General Hugh Brady, then colonel of the Second
Infantry. He had been brevetted brigadier-general in 1822, for ten
years' faithful service in one grade; and was brevetted major-general
in 1848 for meritorious conduct. Brady led the 450 regulars, upon the
trail of Black Hawk, from Wisconsin Heights to the Bad Ax.

117 (page 354).--May 14, 1832, Black Hawk and fifty or sixty of his
head men were encamped near the mouth of Sycamore Creek, a tributary
of the Rock River. Toward sunset of that day, there appeared, three
miles down the Rock, two battalions of Illinois volunteer troops, a
total of 341 men, under Majors Isaiah Stillman and David Bailey. The
whites had unlimbered for a night in camp, when three Indians appeared
with a white flag, messengers from Black Hawk, who tells us in his
autobiography that he wished at the time to offer to meet General
Atkinson in council, with a view to peaceful withdrawal to the west
of the Mississippi. The troopers, many of whom were in liquor, slew
two of the messengers, the third running back to warn Black Hawk. That
astute warrior drew up twenty-five securely mounted braves behind a
fringe of bushes, and when the whites appeared in disorderly array
fired one volley at them, and rushed forward with the war-whoop. The
troopers turned and fled in consternation, galloping madly toward their
homes, carrying the news that Black Hawk and two thousand blood-thirsty
warriors were raiding northern Illinois. Sycamore Creek was thereafter
known as Stillman's Run.

118 (page 354).--August 27, 1832, two Winnebago braves, Chætar and
One-Eyed Decorah, delivered up Black Hawk and his Prophet to the
Indian agent at Prairie du Chien, Joseph M. Street (see Note 49). The
fugitives had been found at the dalles of the Wisconsin River, above
Kilbourn City.

119 (page 355).--Edgar M. Lacey, a native of New York, was at this time
second lieutenant in the Second Infantry; he was commissioned first
lieutenant in 1835, and captain in 1838. From 1831-38 he served at
Forts Winnebago (Portage) and Crawford (Prairie du Chien). He died at
the latter post, April 2, 1839, aged thirty-two years.

120 (page 357).--Red Bird, a Winnebago village chief, was the leader
of what in Wisconsin history is indifferently called "The Winnebago
War," or "Red Bird's uprising," in 1827. The United States troops,
having quelled the disturbance, proposed to wreak summary vengeance on
the entire tribe unless it gave up the two principal offenders. Red
Bird and a brave named Wekau, who had escaped to the wilderness. The
two men voluntarily surrendered themselves to Major William Whistler,
at the Fox-Wisconsin portage, in July of that year. Red Bird's conduct
on this occasion was particularly brave and picturesque, and he won
the admiration of the troops. He was confined at Prairie du Chien,
and given ample opportunity to escape, for the military authorities
did not know what to do with him; but he proudly refused to break his
parole. After a few months he died from an epidemic then prevalent in
the village, and thus greatly relieved his unwilling jailers.

121 (page 358).--General George B. Porter, of Pennsylvania, was
appointed governor of Michigan Territory in 1831, to succeed Lewis
Cass. He died in office, in July, 1834.

122 (page 359).--See Note 17.

123 (page 360).--Joseph C. Plymton was a native of Massachusetts, and
at this time a captain in the Second Infantry, but held the brevet of
major for ten years' faithful service in one grade. His commission as
major came in 1840; he was made lieutenant-colonel in 1846, and colonel
in 1853; he died on Staten Island, June 5, 1860. Plymton won notice for
gallantry at Cerro Gordo and Contreras.

124 (page 366).--Apparently Camillus C. Daviess, of Kentucky, a second
lieutenant of the Fifth Infantry. He became a first lieutenant in 1836,
and resigned in 1838.

125 (page 366).--Enos Cutler, born at Brookfield, Mass., November 1,
1781, graduated at Brown University at the age of nineteen, was tutor
there a year, and then studied law in Cincinnati. He entered the army
in 1808 as lieutenant, was promoted to a captaincy in 1810, serving
through the War of 1812 as assistant adjutant-general and assistant
inspector-general; major in 1814; served under General Jackson in the
Creek War and on the Seminole campaign; made lieutenant-colonel in
1826; colonel in 1836; resigning in 1839, and dying at Salem, Mass.,
July 14, 1860.

126 (page 379).--Horatio Phillips Van Cleve, of New Jersey, was at
this time a brevet second lieutenant of the Second Infantry; he was
regularly commissioned as such in 1834. In 1836 he resigned from
the army to become a civil engineer in Michigan. During the War of
Secession he went out as colonel of the Second Minnesota, was severely
wounded at Stone River, but recovered and served with distinction until
the close of the war, retiring with the rank of major-general. In 1836
he married Charlotte Ouisconsin Clark, daughter of Major Nathan Clark
(see Note 110). Mrs. Van Cleve, who is still living (1901), was born at
Fort Crawford in 1819, and is said to have been the first woman of pure
white blood born within the present limits of Wisconsin.

127 (page 384).--See Note 55.

128 (page 387).--Major Thomas Forsyth, who had been a fur-trader on
Saginaw Bay, at Chicago, on an island in the Mississippi near Quincy,
and at Peoria, was appointed government Indian agent for the Illinois
district at the outbreak of the War of 1812-15. His headquarters were
at Peoria. At the close of the war he was appointed agent for the
Sacs and Foxes, resigning just previous to the Black Hawk War (1832).
Forsyth rendered valuable service to the government while Indian agent,
and has left behind many valuable MS. reports, of great interest to
historical students; a large share of these are in the archives of the
Wisconsin Historical Society.


  Abbott, Samuel, of American Fur Company, 10, 395.
  Agatha, daughter of Decorah, 369-371;
    her sad story, 372-375.
  Agency City, Iowa, Street at, 404;
    treaty of 1836, 409.
  Albach, James R., _Annals of the West_, 155.
  Alexander, Gen. Milton K., in Black Hawk War, 343, 416.
  Algoma, Wis., Knaggs at, 413.
  Alleghany Mountains, discovery of passes, 405, 406.
  Allen, Col. George W., has negro servant, 193.
  Allouez, Father Claude, Jesuit missionary, at De Pere, 413.
  American Board of Commissioners for Foreign Missions, operations in
      Wisconsin, 401.
  American Bureau of Ethnology, publications of, 402.
  American Fur Company, at Mackinac, 6-10, 150, 393-395;
    at Fort Winnebago, 66, 326, 327, 336, 337, 403;
    Fisher's agency, 398;
    John   Kinzie's agency, xvi;
    John H. Kinzie's agency, xvi, xvii, 42-45;
    Rolette's agency, 17-19;
    absorbs Conant & Mack, 407.
  American Home Missionary Society, sends out Kent, 405.
  Appleton, Wis., Mrs. Kinzie at site of, 35, 416.
  Atkinson, Gen. Henry, in Black Hawk War, 315, 318, 344, 414-417.
  Arkansas, early land surveys, 406.
  Armstrong, Mrs. ----, tavern keeper, 351.
  Arndt, Hamilton, freighter, 58, 69, 70, 305, 306.
  Arndt, John P., Green Bay tavern keeper, 14, 396;
    at a hop, 23, 24.
  Arndt, Mrs. John P., tavern keeper, 14, 15, 48.
  Astor, John Jacob, establishes American Fur Company, 393, 394.
  Astoria, founded, 393;
    fall of, 394.
  Auberry (Aubrey), William, killed in Black Hawk War, 317, 318.
  Aux Plaines. See River Desplaines.

  Bailey, Maj. David, raided by Black Hawk, 417.
  Bailey, Jonathan N., Chicago postmaster, 145, 408.
  Bailly, Joseph, fur-trade clerk, 395.
  Baird, Elizabeth Thérèse, entertains Mrs. Kinzie, 22;
    sketch, 398, 399;
    "Reminiscences," xix, 395.
  Baird, Henry S., Green Bay lawyer, 22, 398.
  Baptists, family servant, 376.
  Barclay, Commodore Robert H., British naval officer, 194.
  Baye des Puans (Puants). See Green Bay.
  Beall, Lieut. ----, in Black Hawk War, 316.
  Beall, Samuel W., Green Bay resident, 399.
  Beall, Mrs. Samuel W., at Green Bay hop, 23, 24;
    sketch, 399.
  Bear, in Northwest fur trade, 7.
  Beaubien, ----, death of, 201.
  Beaubien, Jean Baptiste, Chicago resident, 141;
    sketch, 407.
  Beaubien, Mrs. Jean Baptiste, in Chicago massacre, 171.
  Beaubien, Mark, residence of, 143; sketch, 407;
    portrait, 144.
  Beaubien, Medard, hunting, 201;
    at a ball, 228-230.
  Beaumont, Dr. William, at Fort Crawford, 314;
    sketch, 413.
  Beaver, in Northwest fur trade, 7.
  Bee trees, at Piché's, 134.
  Beloit, Wis., Mrs. Kinzie at, 411.
  Bell, ----, early constable, 28.
  Bellaire, ----, engagé, 371.
  Bellaire, Madame ----, wife of foregoing, 369-371.
  Bellefontaine, wayside tavern, 60, 351, 413;
    Mrs. Kinzie at, 308, 309, 312.
  Berthelet, ----, fur trader, 151, 152.
  Bertrand (Parc aux Vaches), in Chicago massacre, 171.
  Biddle, Edward, marries Indian girl, 10, 395.
  Biddle, Nicholas, educates Sophia Biddle, 395.
  Big Foot, Pottawattomie chief, 247-250;
    imprisons Shaubena, 409;
    view of village, 250.
  Bisson, Mrs. ----, befriends Mrs. Helm, 182-185.
  Blackbird, A. J., _History of Ottawa and Chippewa Indians_, 393.
  Black Hawk, Sac headman, opposes land cession, 389, 391, 392;
    uprising of, 272, 273, 407, 411, 414, 416, 417;
    capture of, 404, 417;
    portrait, 354.
    See also, Black Hawk War.
  Black Hawk War, causes of, 411, 412;
    murder of St. Vrain, 116;
    Stillman's Run, 354;
    at Lake Koshkonong, 411, 414, 415;
    battle of Wisconsin Heights, 344, 354, 416;
    battle of Bad Ax, 353, 354, 416;
    effect at Fort Winnebago, 363, 364;
    scare at Green Bay, 375;
    Stambaugh's expedition, 349;
    Winnebagoes in, 65, 404;
    Gratiot's services, 414;
    Hamilton's operations, 406;
    Scott's movements, 415;
    Pottawattomies in, 409;
    Hogan in, 408;
    Street's services, 404;
    comments on, 416;
    Mrs. Kinzie's account, 314-371;
    Thomas Forsyth's account, 387-392.
  Black Jim, a negro servant, 180, 193.
  Black Partridge, Pottawattomie chief, in Chicago massacre, 169, 174, 175,
      182-184, 189, 190;
    illustration of return of medal, 168.
  Black Wolf, Winnebago chief, 80, 321, 404.
  Blanchard, Rufus, _The Northwest and Chicago_, 407.
  Blue Mounds, near Morrison's, 405;
    Kinzies at, 103, 104;
    in Black Hawk War, 318.
  Boilvin, Nicholas, Indian agent and justice, 28, 285;
    removed, 404;
    sketch, 400.
  Boisvert, ----, Green Bay habitan, 27, 28.
  Bourgeois, meaning of term, 28, 394.
  Brush, Miss ----, sister of Charles, 412;
    accompanies Kinzies, 303, 304.
  Brush, Charles, Green Bay resident, 386, 412.
  Bradley, Capt. Hezekiah, erects Fort Dearborn II, 140.
  Brady, Gen. Hugh, in Black Hawk War, 353;
    sketch, 416, 417.
  Brewster, Messrs., fur traders, 408.
  Brothertown Indians, move to Wisconsin, 401;
    visited by Mrs. Kinzie, 333-336.

  Brown, Henry, _History of Illinois_, 155.

  Brown County, Wis., early court of, 402.

  Buffalo, hunted by Indians, 405, 406.

  Buffalo Grove, Ill., settled, 406;
    Mrs. Kinzie at, 118.

  Burnett, ----, fur trader, 180.

  Burns, ----, in Chicago massacre, 155, 159.

  Burns, Mrs. ----, held captive by Indians, 188, 189.

  Butte des Morts, Grand, legend of, 52;
    Mrs. Kinzie at, 48-53, 307-309, 328-330, 413;
    Doty at, 25.

  Butte des Morts, Petit, description and tradition, 401, 402;
    Mrs. Kinzie at, 40, 349.

  Cadillac, Antoine de la Mothe, founds Detroit, 396.

  Cadle, Richard Fish, mission school, 275;
    greets Mrs. Kinzie, 20;
    sketch, 398.

  Cadle, Sarah, at Green Bay mission school, 398;
    greets Mrs. Kinzie, 20.

  Cahokia, Ill., Charles Gratiot at, 414.

  Caldwell, Billy (the Sauganash), Pottawattomie chief, 144;
    befriends whites, 184, 197, 249;
    hunting, 201;
    accompanies Kinzies, 234-238;
    sketch, 408, 409.

  Caledonia, Wis., Crélie at, 414.

  Calumet County, Wis., Stockbridges in, 401.

  Camp Smith, established, 396, 397;
    site of Cadle mission, 398.

  Canada, Sac trail to, from Mississippi River, 121.

  Canadian boat songs, 23-30, 56, 327, 400.

  Canadian voyageurs, 150-154.

  Carlisle, Pa., settlement of, 207.

  Casenovia, Ill., Alexander Robinson at, 409.

  Cass, Lewis, tour to sources of Mississippi, 2, 27, 397;
    superintendent of Indians, xvii, 44, 146;
    governor of Michigan Territory, 399, 418;
    in Winnebago War, 319.

  Cass, Mrs. Lewis, advises Mrs. Kinzie, 27, 399.

  Catherine, a servant, 356.

  Catholics, at Mackinac, 9, 395.
    See also, Jesuits and Mazzuchelli.

  Caxton Club, republishes _Wau-Bun_, xx.

  Chætar, a Winnebago, 417.

  Chambers, Col. Talbot, completes Fort Howard, 397.

  Champlain, Samuel de, sends Nicolet to Wisconsin, 403.

  Chandonnai, John B., fur trade clerk, 179, 186, 188.

  Charlotte, a Winnebago woman, 267, 268.

  Chekakou. See Chicago.

  Chequamegon Bay, Marquette driven from, 396.

  Chicago, origin of name, 145, 146;
    on early maps, 408;
    map of portage, 146;
    early voyages to, 1;
    early French at, 146;
    arrival of Kinzie family, xvi, 138, 139;
    John Kinzie's career, 146-150;
    the massacre (1812), 155-191;
    return of John Kinzie (1816), 197;
    burial of massacre victims, 197;
    bas-reliefs from massacre monument, 168, 172, 174, 176;
    Indian agency, 197, 227;
    trail from Dixon's, 117, 121;
    from Piché's, 132;
    from Portage, 108;
    John H. Kinzie at, xvii, xviii, 92-139, 150, 385, 386;
    historical relation to Kinzie family, xviii;
    town site platted, 200, 409, 410;
    Kinzie's Addition platted, 204, 205, 376;
    conditions in 1831, 140-145, 197-205;
    early postal arrangements, 198, 304, 408;
    early sermon, 203, 204;
    Methodists at, 408;
    early school, 408;
    express from Fort Winnebago, 91, 369;
    early marketing, 197, 198;
    cattle for Fort Howard, 406;
    currant bushes from, 277;
    ferries, 143, 408;
    taverns, 143, 407;
    ball at Hickory Creek, 227-230;
    fur trade, 408, 419;
    early publishing, xviii;
    Beaubiens at, 407;
    Billy Caldwell at, 409;
    Pottawattomie cession, 200;
    cholera at, 415;
    land grant for canal, 409, 410;
    Wright's Woods, 202;
    in Peoria County, 407;
    site claimed by Wisconsin, 397;
    view in 1820, 140;
    in 1831, 142;
    map of 1830, 142;
    Historical Society furnishes illustrations, xvi, 142, 144, 146, 156,
      198, 228;
    Mrs. Kinzie's _Narrative of Massacre_, xviii, xix.
    See also, Fort Dearborn and Fur Trade.

  Chillicothe, Ohio, McKenzie girls at, xiv, xv.

  Chippewanaung, treaty of 1836, 409.

  Chippewa Indians, French appelation of, 52;
    language, 32, 68, 264, 355;
    relations to English, 7;
    treaty of 1816, 388, 409;
    Billy Caldwell, 408, 409;
    in Black Hawk War, 320, 329, 351;
    met by Mrs. Kinzie, 32;
    Blackbird's _History_, 393.

  Cholera, in Black Hawk War, 340, 355, 356, 415.

  Chouteau, Auguste, treats with Sacs, 388.

  Chouteau, Pierre, sr., treats with Sacs, 388.

  Christman, ----, a soldier, 37, 38, 41, 273, 274.

  Clark, ----, marries Elizabeth McKenzie, xv.

  Clark, Charlotte Ouisconsin, marries Lieut. Van Cleve, 418.
    See also, Mrs. H. P. Van Cleve.

  Clark, Gen. George Rogers, captures Vincennes, 399.

  Clark, Maj. Nathan, at Fort Howard, 342, 343;
    Fort Crawford, 418;
    sketch, 415.

  Clark, Gov. William, treats with Sacs, 388, 390, 391.

  Clay, Henry, visits Winnebagoes, 65.

  Clybourn, Archibald, Chicago resident, 144.

  Clybourn, Jonas, marries Elizabeth McKenzie, xvi.

  Conant & Mack, fur traders, 407.

  Cook County, Ill., commissioners' court, 408.

  Cooke & Co., D. B., publish _Wau-Bun_, xix.

  Cooper, Fenimore, novelist, 399.

  Corbin, Mrs. Phelim, heroism of, 178.

  Corn (maize), grown by Northwest Indians, 7, 8.

  Corn Planter (Big White Man), Seneca chief, 209, 211, 215-223.

  Council Bluffs, Iowa, Billy Caldwell at, 409.

  Courtes-oreilles. See Ottawa Indians.

  Courville, Florence, at Sunday school, 274, 275.

  Crélie (Crély), Joseph, Green Bay habitan, 27, 28;
    in Black Hawk War, 318;
    sketch, 414.

  Croghan, Col. George, attacks Mackinac Island, 395.

  Crooks, Ramsay, expedition from Astoria, 393.

  Cross Village. See L'Arbre Croche.

  Cuivre Settlement, Indian murder at, 387.

  Currie, ----, hospital steward, 369-371.

  Cut Nose (Elizabeth), a Winnebago woman, 269-271, 385.

  Cutler, Col. Enos, at Fort Winnebago, 366, 367, 380;
    sketch, 418.

  Dakotan Indians, Winnebagoes are offshoots from, 403.

  Dandy, son of Black Wolf, 404.

  Dandy, Winnebago chief, 65, 66.

  Davenport, George, purchases Sac Lands, 390, 391.

  David, negro servant, 90, 327, 354.

  Daviess, Lieut. Camillus C., at Fort Winnebago, 366;
    sketch, 418.

  Davis, Lieut. Jefferson, at Fort Winnebago, 59, 70, 403.

  Dean, John, sutler at Fort Dearborn, 141, 145.

  De Charme, ----, Michigan fur trader, 167.

  Decorah, Grey-headed (Old), Winnebago chief, 63, 64, 88, 89, 382;
    sketch, 403;
    his mother, 278-280;
    his daughter, 381, 382.

  Decorah, One-Eyed, a Winnebago, 417;
    captures Black Hawk, 354.

  Decorah, Rascal, his daughter Agatha, 369-375.

  Decorah (Day-kau-ray) family, Winnebagoes, 269, 270, 372-374.

  Deer, in Northwest fur trade, 7.

  De Langlade, Charles, first white settler in Wisconsin, 398, 400.

  De Langlade, Louise Domitilde, marries Pierre Grignon, 400.

  Delaware (Lenapé) Indians, friends of whites, 206, 207, 211.

  De Ligney, ----, letter to De Siette, 146.

  De Pere, Wis., origin of name, 413;
    Mrs. Kinzie at, 306.

  Derby & Jackson, publish _Wau-Bun_, xix.

  De Siette, ----, letter from De Ligney, 146.

  Detroit, founded by Cadillac, 396;
    Jesuit mission, 12, 396;
    Récollets at, 396;
    massacre, 323;
    Lytles, 223;
    John Kinzie, xiv, xv, 148, 181, 186;
    Kinzies, xvi, xvii, 1, 2, 26, 28, 44, 167, 262, 278, 304, 385, 386;
    Mackenzies, xiii, xv;
    Réaume, 399;
    surrendered by Hull, 162, 192;
    under English control, 188, 192-196, 224;
    lake schooner from, 227;
    early wagon from, 231;
    cholera at, 340, 345;
    Mark Beaubien, 407;
    Doty, 397;
    Hogan, 408;
    Robert Stuart, 393, 394.

  Dickenson's, gossip at, 304;
    Mrs. Kinzie at, 337.

  Dixon, John, founder of Dixon, Ill., 406;
    entertains Kinzies, 119-121;
    sketch, 407.

  Dixon, Mrs. John, entertains Kinzies, 118-121.

  Dixon, Ill. (Ogee's Ferry), genesis of, 406, 407;
    Mrs. Kinzie at, 94, 116-122.

  Dodge, Elizabeth, daughter of Henry, 104, 106.

  Dodge, Maj. Henry, in Black Hawk War, 104, 343, 344, 360, 416

  Dogherty, ----, a Quaker, 134, 136, 137.

  Dole, George W., Chicago settler, 228.

  Dominicans, in Wisconsin, 411.

  Doty, James Duane, entertains Kinzies, 16-27;
    accompanies Kinzies, 27, 35, 37, 38, 48, 50, 51, 53;
    defends Winnebago suspects, 359;
    sketch, 397.

  Doty, Mrs. James Duane, entertains Kinzies, 17, 21.

  Doty's Island, Mrs. Kinzie at, 413.

  Dousman family, residence at Mackinac, 10.

  Doyle, ----, a soldier, hanged for murder, 341-343, 410.

  Draper, Lyman Copeland, names Madison lakes, 405.

  Drew, ----, residence at Mackinac, 10.

  Du Charme, Dominic, settles Kaukauna, 400.

  Duck Creek, Kinzies on, 96, 97, 258, 259.

  Dunkley's Grove, Ill., Kinzies at, 236-238.

  Dunmore's War, McKenzie girls captured in, xiv.

  Dunn, Col. Charles, Chicago canal commissioner, 409.

  Du Pin, ----, French fur trader, 190, 191.

  Durham boats, described, 344.

  Eastman, Capt. S., view of Mackinac, 6.

  Education, at Chicago, 145, 408;
    reservation of school section, 410.
    See also, Cadle, Ferry, Mazzuchelli, Marsh, Miner,
      Williams, and the several denominations.

  Edwards, Gov. Ninian, treats with Sacs, 388.

  Ellis & Fergus, early Chicago printers, xviii.

  Engle, Lieut. James, at Fort Dearborn, 144.

  Engle, Mrs. James, at Fort Dearborn, 232.

  English, early maps by, 408;
    captivity of John Kinzie, 192-196;
    campaign against Sandusky, 403;
    in War of 1812-15, 186-188;
    Indian department, 399;
    relations with Iroquois, 206, 211, 215;
    relations with North-western Indians, 7, 121, 157, 176, 339, 407-409;
    removal of upper lake posts, xv;
    occupy Mackinac, 162, 164, 395, 396;
    capture Prairie du Chien, 398, 400;
    on Mississippi, 403;
    at Detroit, 188, 192-196, 224;
    fur trade of, 393, 394;
    emigration to Canada, xiii.

  Ephraim, Uncle, a negro servant, 84, 85.

  Episcopalians. See Cadle and Eleazer Williams.

  Fallen Timbers, battle of, xv.

  Ferries, at Chicago, 143, 408;
    across Desplaines, 137;
    at Detroit, 255.
    See also, J. P. Arndt, Dixon, Knaggs, and Ogee.

  Ferry, Rev. William Montague, Presbyterian missionary, 6, 9;
    sketch, 394.

  Finley, Dr. Clement A., post surgeon, 305;
    at Fort Dearborn, 145;
    at Fort Howard, 305;
    at Fort Winnebago, 355, 356.

  Fisher, Henry Munro, fur trader, 398.

  Fleming, Gen. ----, grandson of Haliburton, xiii, 147.

  Folles Avoines. See Menomonee Indians.

  Follett, Burley, in Black Hawk War, 318.

  Forbes, Elvira (Mrs. Stephen), schoolmistress, 145, 408.

  Force, George, killed in Black Hawk War, 318.

  Forsyth, Miss ----, accompanies Mrs. Kinzie, 344-352.

  Forsyth, George, lost in woods, 149, 150.

  Forsyth, Maj. Robert A., Indian agent, 64, 366;
    sketch, 403.

  Forsyth, Thomas, fur trader, 186;
    account of Black Hawk War, 387-392;
    sketch, 419.

  Forsyth, William, marries Mrs. Mackenzie, xiii, 147.

  Forsyth, Mrs. William, story of captivity, 205-223.

  Fort Apple River, in Black Hawk War, 318.

  Fort Armstrong, in Black Hawk War, 412.
    See also, Rock Island.

  Fort Atkinson, Wis., genesis of, 414.

  Fort Crawford, birth of Charlotte O. Clark, 418;
    in Black Hawk War, 416;
    Dr. Beaumont at, 413;
    Lieut. Lacey, 417;
    Mrs. Mitchell, 10.

  Fort Dearborn I (1803-12), built, 407;
    description, 156;
    John Kinzie, trader, xvi;
   Indian agency, 159;
    massacre, xvi, 156-191;
    views, 156, 172.

  Fort Dearborn II (1816), built, 140, 197, 407;
    description, 140-142, 197;
    Indian agency, 142, 144, 145, 160, 161, 197;
    Hogan, sutler, 408;
    garrison in 1831, 144, 145;
    offender drummed out, 202, 203;
    troops withdrawn (1831), 227, 230-233, 237, 238, 246, 247, 341;
    re-occupied (1832), 410.

  Fort Defiance, McKillip killed at, 224.

  Fort George, on Mackinac Island, 395, 396.

  Fort George, on Niagara frontier, the Helms at, 187.

  Fort Gratiot, John H. Kinzie at, 278; cholera, 340.

  Fort Holmes, on Mackinac Island, 11, 396.

  Fort Howard, built, 397;
    named from General Howard, 397;
    history, 397;
    Indian agency, 337, 413;
    murder of Lieut. Foster, 341-343, 410;
    Kinzies at, 16, 22;
    arrival of lake schooner, 304;
    imports Illinois cattle, 406;
    Col. Smith at, 396;
    Chicago troops removed to, 227, 230-233, 238, 246, 247;
    Capt. Scott's kennels, 410;
    Dr. Finley at, 305;
    Fifth regiment, 260;
    in Black Hawk War, 322, 326, 337-344, 364;
    view, 14.

  Fort Mackinac, Mrs. Kinzie at, 9, 10.
    See also, Mackinac Island.

  Fort Maiden, John Kinzie at, 194;
    North-western Indians, 7, 157, 407.

  Fort Niagara, Ont., English Indian agency at, 211, 220-223.

  Fort Pitt. See Pittsburg.

  Fort Wayne, Ind., Margaret McKenzie near, xiv;
    destination of Chicago garrison, 163-166, 168;
    Chicago mail, 198.

  Fort Winnebago, 104, 106, 112;
    site of, 59, 60;
    description, 260-264;
    receives troops from Fort Howard, 339;
    Chicago troops at, 233;
    Kinzies, xvii, 25, 26, 56-96, 139, 201, 227, 230-233, 260-305, 344-352;
    Indian agency, xvii, 57, 58, 60, 68, 72-80, 260-303, 358-386, 411;
    daily life, 80-87, 89, 90;
    First and Fifth regiments, 260;
    Winnebagoes, 60-66, 264-303;
    in Black Hawk War, 314-371, 387-392, 416, 417;
    surrender of Winnebago suspects, 357-363;
    escape of prisoners, 366-368, 384, 385;
    payment of Indian annuities, 363, 364, 366;
    Indian destitution, 380-383;
    first Protestant sermon, 384;
    trail from Butte des Morts, 51, 53;
    from Chicago, 121;
    mail via Green Bay, 304;
    land journey from Green Bay, 305-313;
    snakes, 21;
    Lieut. Davis, 403;
    Capt. Hooe, 403;
    Lieut. Lacey, 417;
    views, 56, 358;
    Turner's "History," 411.

  Foster, Lieut. Amos, at Fort Dearborn, 144, 145, 228, 229, 232;
    accompanies Kinzies, 233-238, 255, 341;
    at Lake Geneva, 246, 247;
    murder of, 341-343;
    sketch, 410.

  Four Lakes, at Madison, how named, 405;
    near Sugar Creek, 368;
    Winnebagoes on, 72;
    Kinzies at, 100, 102, 103, 256;
    in Black Hawk War, 316, 317.

  Four-Legs (Hootschope), Winnebago chief, 65;
    offers daughter to John H. Kinzie, 43-45;
    Mrs. Kinzie at village of, 41-45, 333;
    death, 60-63;
    view of village, 42.

  Four-Legs, Madame, at Fort Howard, 344;
    at husband's funeral, 62, 63.

  Four-Legs (Young Dandy), Winnebago chief, at Fort Winnebago, 264, 265.

  Fowle, Maj. John, jr., at Fort Dearborn, 144.

  Fox, in Northwest fur trade, 7.

  Fox Indians (Musquakees), French appellation of, 53;
    relations with French, 52, 53;
    with English, 7;
    allied to Sacs, 402;
    talk with Harrison, 387, 388;
    on Mississippi, 270, 391, 392;
    in treaty of 1804, 389, 390;
    in treaty of 1816, 411, 412;
    Forsyth's agency, 387, 419;
    one marries Winnebago woman, 269, 270;
    Madame Four-Legs, 62, 63, 344;
    met by Mrs. Kinzie, 32;
    in Black Hawk War, 314;
    at Rock Island, 404.

  Franchère, Gabriel, _Narrative of a Voyage_, etc., 4.

  François, half-breed interpreter, 186.

  Frankfort, Ky., _Western World_, 404.

  Franks, Jacob, fur trader, 402.

  French, early maps by, 408;
    rout Foxes, 53, 402;
    downfall of New France, xiii, 7;
    nature of French-Canadian _patois_, 412;
    names for Indians, 53, 54;
    as fur trade agents, 394;
    as voyageurs, 327-338, 344-352;
    as cooks, 31, 37, 47, 101, 102, 236, 251;
    related to Winnebagoes, 373, 374, 403;
    at Butte des Morts, 49, 402;
    Chicago, 142, 146, 158, 160, 407, 408;
    Fort Winnebago, 66, 68, 83, 85, 86, 94-97, 260, 262, 263, 269, 271,
      274-277, 285, 320, 322, 327, 365, 369-371, 403;
    Green Bay, 23, 398;
    in Kinzie's employ, 95-139, 227;
    at Barney Lawton's, 235;
    Mackinac, 5, 7, 8, 10, 12, 395;
    on Mississippi, 403;
    at Prairie du Chien, 398;
    on Rock River, 407;
    at Sandwich, 12;
    Eleazer Williams pretends to be dauphin, 401.

  Frum, Louis (_dit_ Manaigre), at Fort Winnebago, 262, 263, 274-276,
      320, 352.

  Fry, ----, tried by Boilvin, 28.

  Fur trade, features of voyageur service, 150-154;
    by English, 394;
    at Astoria, 393;
    Chicago, 145, 146, 156, 190, 191, 408;
    Detroit, 407, 408;
    Dixon, 407;
    Fort Winnebago, 80;
    Green Bay, 14, 396, 398, 402;
    on Mississippi, 403;
    at Morrison's Grove, 405;
    Portage, 405;
    Prairie du Chien, 414;
    St. Joseph's 180;
    operations by Boilvin, 400;
    Davenport, 391;
    Fisher, 398;
    Thomas Forsyth, 387, 419;
    Charles Gratiot, 414;
    Grignons, 400;
    John Kinzie, 146-150, 156;
    Knaggs, 413;
    Laframboises, 394, 395;
    Paquette, 326, 336, 337, 413;
    Réaume, 399;
    Rolette, 17-19, 398;
    Whitney, 412.
    See also, American Fur Co., Hudson Bay Co., Mackinaw Co.,
      Northwest Co., Southwest Co., and Scotch.

  Furman, Lieut John G., at Fort Dearborn, 144;
    death, 201.

  Gagnon, Ernest, _Chansons Populaires du Canada_, 400.

  Gaines, Gen. E. P., removes Black Hawk, 391.

  Galena, Ill., Kent at, 107, 384, 405;
    Hempsteads, 404;
    Philleo, 306;
    in Black Hawk War, 318;
    in Peoria County, 407;
    trail from Peoria, 406, 407.

  Gardiner, Mrs. ----, hospital matron, 246.

  Garlic Island (Island Park), near Oshkosh, 402;
    Wild Cat's village, 358;
    Mrs. Kinzie at, 45, 331-333.

  Genéviève, a half-breed servant, 138, 376.

  Glamorgan, ----, Dominican negro, 146.

  Gleason, Luther, settler on Fox River, 54, 56, 350-352.

  Gordon, Daisy, copies portrait of John H. Kinzie, xvi.

  Gordon, Mrs. Eleanor Kinzie, read proof-sheets, xxi.

  Grand Chûte, Mrs. Kinzie at, 35-39, 69, 333, 345-348, 369;
    view, 346.

  Grand Haven, Mich., settled, 394.

  Grand Marais, Kinzies near, 124.

  Gratiot, Charles, fur trader, sketch, 414.

  Gratiot, Maj. Charles, plans Fort Howard, 397.

  Gratiot, Henry, son of Charles, 414;
    Indian agent, 323;
    lead miner, 404.

  Green, Emerson, killed in Black Hawk War, 318.

  Green Bay, 70;
    named Baye des Puans, 403;
    arrival of Nicolet, 403;
    Réaume's career, 27, 28, 399, 400;
    fur trade, 396, 398, 402;
    hanging of Doyle, 341-343;
    in Black Hawk War, 339-344, 375, 415;
    Stambaugh's expedition, 349, 416;
    Doty's court, 397;
    first ferry, 396;
    arrival of Winnebago commissioners, 364;
    mosquitoes, 340;
    Green Bay fly, 341;
    residents met at Butte des Morts, 48;
    Bairds at, 398, 399;
    Bealls, 399;
    Cadle's mission, 398;
    Charles Gratiot, 414;
    Grignon family, 400;
    Ursula M. Grignon, 398;
    W. S. Hamilton, 406;
    Kinzies, xvii, 1, 13-30, 58, 68, 278, 303-306, 326, 344, 386;
    Rolette, 18;
    Stambaugh, 413;
    Whitney, 412.
    See also, Fort Howard, Navarino, and Shantytown.

  Greenville, Ohio, treaty of, xv, 408.

  Gridley, ----, a soldier, 35.

  Griffith, ----, a soldier, 185, 186.

  Grignon, ----, half-breed at Butte des Morts, 48, 50.

  Grignon, Misses, described by Mrs. Kinzie, 20, 21.

  Grignon, Amable, son of Pierre, 400.

  Grignon, Augustin, son of Pierre, 400;
    fur trader, 402;
    at Kaukauna, 400;
    "Recollections," 400.

  Grignon, Charles, son of Pierre, 400.

  Grignon, Domitilde, daughter of Pierre, 400.

  Grignon, Elizabeth, assists Mazzuchelli, 266.

  Grignon, Hippolyte, son of Pierre, 400.

  Grignon, Jean Baptiste, son of Pierre, 400.

  Grignon, Louis, son of Pierre, 400;
    fur trader, 20, 398.

  Grignon, Marguerite, daughter of Pierre, 400.

  Grignon, Petaille, engagé, 83, 227, 236-238, 240, 250, 252, 254, 258.

  Grignon, Pierre, fur trader, 400.

  Grignon, Mrs. Pierre, marries Langevin, 400.

  Grignon, Pierre Antoine, son of Pierre, 400.

  Grignon, Ursula M., described by Mrs. Kinzie, 21;
    sketch, 398.

  Grignon family, at Kaukauna, 30, 31, 307;
    at Butte des Morts, 48;
    sketch, 400.

  Grosse Pointe, near Detroit, 224.

  Guardapie, Alexis, a voyageur, 331, 338.

  Haliburton, ----, first husband of Mrs. Mackenzie, xiii, 147.

  Hall, Benjamin, marries Margaret McKenzie, xvi.

  Hamilton, Alexander, father of William Stephen, 406.

  Hamilton, Mrs. Alexander, visits Wisconsin, 406.

  Hamilton, Lieut. Gov. Henry, expedition against Vincennes, 399.

  Hamilton, Col. R. J., at Chicago, 227.

  Hamilton, William Stephen, entertains Kinzies, 107-116;
    escorts Kinzies, 307;
    sketch, 406.

  Hamilton's Diggings (Wiota), founded, 406;
    Mrs. Kinzie at, 107-114, 307.

  Hancock, ----, a soldier, 86.

  Hanks, Lieut. Porter, loses Mackinac, 395.

  Harbor Springs, Mich. See L'Arbre Croche.

  Hardscrabble, early name for Lee's Place, 144.

  Harmon, Dr. E., early Chicago physician, 145, 202, 204.

  Harney, Capt. William Selby, escorts Kinzies to Fort Winnebago, 21, 22,
    at Fort Winnebago, 17, 80, 91, 113, 354;
    in Black Hawk War, 316;
    sketch, 397.

  Harrison, Gen. William Henry, fights Indians, 404;
    at Detroit, xvi, 193, 196;
    governor of Indiana Territory, 399;
    talks with Sacs and Foxes, 387, 388.

  Harry, a negro servant, 233, 234, 236, 237, 240, 274, 277, 332, 334.

  Hastings's Woods, near Portage, 370;
    Mrs. Kinzie at, 257, 258.

  Hays, Sergt. ----, killed in Chicago massacre, 191.

  Hays, Henry, deserts George Forsyth, 148, 149.

  Heacock, Russell E., Chicago resident, 144.

  Heald, Capt. Nathan, in Chicago massacre, 156, 162-168, 186-188.

  Heald, Mrs. Nathan, in Chicago massacre, 157, 179-181, 186-188.

  Healy, G. P. A., portraits of Mr. and Mrs. John H. Kinzie,
      _frontispiece_, xvi.

  Helm, Edwin, son of Linai T., 236, 240, 241, 274, 278, 379;
    goes to Green Bay, 331, 332, 334-336.

  Helm, Lieut. Linai T., in Chicago massacre, 156, 173, 175, 177, 186, 187.

  Helm, Mrs. Margaret, wife of foregoing, a McKillip, xvi, 224;
    narrative of Chicago massacre, 157, 173-191;
    goes to Fort Winnebago, 227, 234-259;
    at Fort Winnebago, 275, 319, 320, 324, 325;
    goes to Fort Howard, 327-337;
    returns to Fort Winnebago, 344-352.

  Hempstead, ----, Galena resident, 71.

  Hempstead, Charles, Galena lawyer, 404.

  Hempstead, Edward, Galena resident, 404.

  Hempstead, Stephen, sketch, 404.

  Hempstead, Susan, marries Henry Gratiot, 404.

  Henry, Gen. James D., in Black Hawk War, 321, 343, 344, 416.

  "Henry Clay," early lake steamer, xvii, 1-3, 9, 11-13, 15.

  Henshaw, Miss Frances, visits Kinzies, 303, 412.

  Hickory Creek, early ball at, 227-230.

  Hinckley, Capt. ----, at Fort Dearborn, 231, 232.

  Hogan, John Stephen Coats, sutler at Fort Dearborn, 145;
    sketch, 408.

  Holmes, Maj. Andrew Hunter, killed on Mackinac Island, 395, 396.

  Holt, Sergt. ----, wounded in Chicago massacre, 178.

  Holt, Mrs. ----, wife of foregoing, heroism of, 178, 179.

  Hooe, Lieut. Alexander S., at Fort Winnebago, 54;
    sketch, 403.

  Hoo-wau-ne-kah (Little Elk), Winnebago chief, 65;
    in Black Hawk War, 321, 322.

  Howard, Gen. Benjamin, opinion of treaty of 1804, 388;
    name given to Fort Howard, 397.

  Hubbard, Bela, _Memorials of a Half Century_, 400.

  Hudson Bay Company, fur trade of, 394.

  Hull, Gen. William, arrives at Detroit, 162;
    surrender, 192.

  Hunt, George, at Wolf's Point, 198.

  _Hunt's Merchants' Magazine_, 400.

  Hunter, Lieut. David, at Fort Dearborn, 144, 376;
    escorts Mrs. Kinzie, 344-352;
    in Black Hawk War, 322;
    sketch, 414.

  Huron Indians, raided by Iroquois, 396;
    settle at Point St. Ignace, 396.

  Hurlburt, Henry H., _Chicago Antiquities_, 408.

  Illinois, embraces Wisconsin, 400;
    early land surveys, 406;
    Sac and Fox cession (1804), 411;
    furnishes cattle for Fort Howard, 406;
    in Black Hawk War, 273, 314, 315, 411, 412, 416, 417;
    _Wau-Bun_ as historical material for, xx.

  Illinois Indians, early French among, 146.

  Indians, customs and dances, 278-286, 364, 365;
    marriage customs, 264, 265, 372-375;
    medicine men, 282, 283;
    legend of little rail (_poule d'eau_), 242-244;
    of red fox, 287-294;
    of Sheesheebanze (little duck), 295-302;
    feast of green corn, 220, 221;
    scalp dance, 364, 365;
    dance at Fort Winnebago, 324;
    division of labor, 280, 281, 412;
    jerking of meat, 165;
    mat weaving, 54, 55;
    rice harvest, 46, 56;
    use of kinnikinick, 42, 66;
    mounds at Butte des Morts, 402;
    at Lake Koshkonong, 411;
    burial customs, 60-63, 284, 285;
    payment of annuities, 72-75, 80, 262, 272, 278-286, 363, 364, 366;
    in Pontiac's conspiracy, 12;
    Black Hawk War a blot on our relations with, 416;
    attitude of, to Cadle's mission, 398;
    Boilvin's agency, 400;
    Forsyth's, 419;
    Gratiot's, 414;
    Street's, 404;
    Stuart's, 393;
    at Mackinac, 9.
    See also, the several tribes.

  Indiana Territory, embraces Wisconsin, 399.

  Iowa, Mazzuchelli in, 411;
    Winnebago Indians in, 357.

  Iowa County, Wis., Hogan in, 408.

  Iowa Indians, met by Mrs. Kinzie, 32.

  Iroquois Indians, friendly to English, 206, 207, 215;
    raids of, 393, 396.

  Irving, Washington, _Astoria_, 4.

  Irwin, Alexander, in Black Hawk War, 349.

  Irwin family, at Green Bay, 305.

  Island Park, near Oshkosh. See Garlic Island.

  Jackson, Gen. Andrew, in Creek War, 418.

  Jayne, Dr. ----, canal commissioner, 409.

  Jefferson Barracks, Black Hawk at, 387, 392.

  Jenks, Alfred E., on wild rice, 402.

  Jesuits, Marquette's operations, 12, 396;
    at De Pere, 413;
    La Richardie at Sandwich, 396;
    _Relations_, 401.

  Jewett, Charles, Indian agent, 197.

  Jews, in fur trade, 402.

  Johnson, Sir John, English Indian agent, 211, 216, 218, 220-223, 410.

  Johnson, Col. Richard M., interested in Indian education, 88, 89;
    sketch, 404, 405.

  Johnson, Sir William, English Indian superintendent, 410.

  Joliet, Louis, explores Mississippi River, 396, 403.

  Juneau, Solomon, on Cadle's mission, 398.

  Justice, Réaume's administration of, 399, 400;
    Boilvin's, 400;
    Doty's, 397;
    Lawe and Porlier's, 402;
    at Chicago, 408, 409.

  Karraymaunee (Nawkaw), Winnebago chief, 63.

  Kaskaskia, Ill., Charles Gratiot at, 414.

  Kaukauna (Grand Kaccalin, Cacalin, Cockolin, Kackalin, Kakalin, Kokolow),
      first settlement at, 400;
    Presbyterian mission, 400, 401;
    Mrs. Kinzie, 22, 26, 30-35, 306, 307, 337.

  Keepotah (Kepotah) befriends Kinzies, 179, 181, 186, 188, 196, 197.

  Kellogg, O. W., settles Buffalo Grove, 406;
    entertains Kinzies, 116-118;
    accompanies Kinzies, 117-139.

  Kellogg, Mrs. O. W., entertains Kinzies, 116-118.

  Kellogg's Grove, Mrs. Kinzie at, 114-118, 307;
    St. Vrain killed at, 392;
    in Black Hawk War, 316.

  Kent, Rev. Aratus, Galena clergyman, 107, 384;
    sketch, 405.

  Kent, Mrs. Aratus, wife of foregoing, 384.

  Kentucky, R. M. Johnson's career, 404, 405;
    J. M. Street in, 404.

  Keokuk, Fox chief, 404.

  Kercheval, Gholson, 408;
    French nickname for, 153;
    fur trader, 145;
    sutler at Fort Howard, 364, 366;
    at Chicago, 231, 233, 237;
    at early ball, 228-230;
    accompanies Kinzies, 233, 234.

  Kewaniquot (Returning Cloud), Ottawa chief, 394, 398.

  Kickapoo Indians, fur trade of, 150.

  Kilbourn City, Wis., near Wisconsin River dalles, 417.

  Kilgour, Corporal ----, escorts Kinzies, 36, 41.

  King, Mrs. Charles, grandchild of Haliburton, xiii.

  Kinnikinick, Indian substitute for tobacco, 42, 66.

  Kinzie, Ellen Marion, daughter of John, xvi.

  Kinzie, Elizabeth, daughter of John, xv, xvi.

  Kinzie, James, son of John, xv, xvi.

  Kinzie, John, at Bertrand, Mich., 146, 408;
    early life in Chicago, 154, 407;
    in Chicago massacre, 154-191;
    captivity by English, 192-196;
    returns to Chicago (1816), 197;
    last years and death, 197-200;
    sketch, xiii-xvi.

  Kinzie, Mrs. John, wife of foregoing, 145;
    captivity among Senecas, 205-223;
    in Chicago massacre, 155;
    prophecy as to Chicago land values, 205;
    greets authoress, 139;
    at Fort Winnebago, 227 , 234-259, 264, 265, 378;
    at Prairie du Chien, 354, 356;
    has vision of brother's death, 224-227.

  Kinzie, John H., son of foregoing, residence in Chicago, 141, 142;
    canoe trip on Fox River, 25-27;
    at Fort Winnebago, 69, 71, 74, 76, 87-90, 95, 260-263, 272, 278-304,
    journey to Chicago, 94-139;
    returns to Fort Winnebago, 253-259, 306-313;
    sends family to Fort Howard, 326, 327, 335, 343;
    relieves return party, 348-352;
    at Rock Island, 355, 356;
    at Prairie du Chien, 314;
    in Black Hawk War, 314-371, 387-392;
    plats Kinzie's Addition, 376;
    not author of _Narrative of Massacre at Chicago_, xviii;
    sketch, xvi-xviii;
    portrait, xxiii;
    view of residence, 150.

  Kinzie, Mrs. John H. (Juliette A. Magill), journey to Green Bay, 1-13;
    at Green Bay, 13-24;
    canoe trip to Fort Winnebago, 25-57;
    at Fort Winnebago, 57-96;
    journey to Chicago, 96-139;
    in Chicago, 139-234;
    return to Fort Winnebago, 234-259;
    at the fort, 259-304;
    visit to Green Bay, 304-306;
    horseback trip to Portage, 306-313;
    again at Fort Winnebago, 314-326;
    fleeing to Green Bay, 326-338;
    return to Portage, 339-352;
    at the fort again, 353-386;
    account of Black Hawk War, 314-371;
    _Narrative of Massacre at Chicago_, xviii, xix;
    _Walter Ogilby_, xix;
    other literary work, xviii-xx;
    sketch, xvii, xviii;
    portrait, _frontispiece_.

  Kinzie, Maria Indiana, daughter of John, xvi.

  Kinzie, Robert Allen, son of John, xvi;
    fur trader, 408;
    at Chicago, 227-230;
    locates Kinzie's Addition, 204, 205;
    hunting, 201;
    accompanies John H., 234;
    at Fort Winnebago, 58.

  Kinzie, William, born, xv, xvi.

  Kinzie family, relation to Chicago history, xviii;
    French nickname for, 153.

  Kishwaukee, Kinzies near, 124;
    in Black Hawk War, 315.

  Knaggs, James, early tavern keeper, 307-309, 413.

  Lacey, Lieut. Edgar M., at Fort Winnebago, 355, 356, 417.

  La Fayette County, Wis., early emigration to, 406.

  Laframboise, Joseph, fur trader, 394.

  Laframboise, Madame Joseph, half-breed trader, 9;
    sketch, 394, 395, 398.

  Laframboise, Josette (of Chicago), marries J. B. Beaubien, 407.

  Laframboise, Josette (of Mackinac), marries Captain Pierce, 395.

  Laframboise, Glode (Claude), friend of Tomah, 376.

  Lake Buffalo (Lac de Bœuf), Mrs. Kinzie on, 55, 56, 351.

  Lake Butte des Morts, Mrs. Kinzie on, 45, 46.

  Lake Crystal, Kinzies on, 242.

  Lake Erie, crossed by Lytle, 223;
    Perry's battle on, 194, 195.

  Lake Fox, Winnebagoes on, 72.

  Lake Geneva (Big Foot, Gros-pied, Maunk-suck), Shaubena at, 409;
    Kinzies on, 245, 247-251, 253;
    view, 250.

  Lake Green, Winnebagoes on, 72;
    seen by Judge Doty, 51.

  Lake Huron, guarded by Mackinac Island, 395;
    early settlements on, 1;
    Mrs. Kinzie on, 2, 3, 5.

  Lake Kegonsa (First Lake), how named, 405.

  Lake Koshkonong, on Chicago trail, 94, 108, 122;
    Winnebagoes on, 72, 252-254, 404;
    in Black Hawk War, 317, 318, 411, 414-416.

  Lake Mendota (Fourth Lake), how named, 405.

  Lake Michigan, 156;
    guarded by Mackinac Island, 395;
    currents of, 408;
    touched by Sac trail, 407;
    Pottawattomies on, 120, 409;
    fur trade, 6, 394;
    early settlements, 1;
    in Chicago massacre, 171;
    as state boundary, 397;
    Mrs. Kinzie on, 12, 13;
    bounds Kinzie's Addition, 204;
    Dominicans west of, 411;
    in Black Hawk War, 415, 416;
    Chicago canal, 409.

  Lake Monona (Third Lake), how named, 405.

  Lake Mud, Winnebagoes on, 72.

  Lake Puckaway, Mrs. Kinzie on, 54, 55, 60, 350.

  Lake St. Clair, near Detroit, 224.

  Lake Superior, guarded by Mackinac Island, 395;
    fur trade on, 6, 152, 400.

  Lake Swan, near Portage, 286.

  Lake Waubesa (Second Lake), how named, 405.

  Lake Wingra (Dead Lake), at Madison, 405.

  Lake Winnebago, Mrs. Kinzie on, 31, 40-45, 60, 330-332, 348, 349, 413;
    Wild Cat's village, 358;
    Stockbridges on, 401;
    Winnebagoes, 72;
    Rolette, 18, 19.

  Lake Winnipeg, Winnebagoes probably from, 403.

  La Liberté, Louis, voyageur, 154.

  Lands, early surveys in Middle West, 406;
    public sales of, xviii;
    cession by Wisconsin Indians, 355, 357;
    Sac and Fox cessions, 387-391, 411, 412;
    grant in aid of Chicago canal, 409, 410.

  Langevin, Jean Baptiste, marries widow of Pierre Grignon, 400.

  Lapierre, ----, a blacksmith, 100.

  Lapierre, ----, a voyageur, 56.

  La Prairie, near Montreal, 399.

  L'Arbre Croche, Indian village, seen by Mrs. Kinzie, 12, 13, 396.

  La Richardie, Father Armand de, Jesuit missionary, 396.

  Lashley, ----, residence at Mackinac, 10.

  Lawe, John, Green Bay resident, meets Mrs. Kinzie, 48, 49;
    sketch, 402.

  Lawton, Barney, Illinois settler, 137, 138, 234, 235.

  Lead region. Sac and Fox land cession (1804), 411, 412;
    early emigration to, 406;
    Gratiot in, 404, 414;
    Presbyterian mission to, 405;
    in Black Hawk War, 412.

  Leclerc, Peresh, half-breed interpreter, 176, 177.

  Lecuyer, Simon, engagé, 227, 236-240, 252.

  Lee, ----, killed in Chicago massacre, 189.

  Lee, Mrs. ----, wife of foregoing, in Indian captivity, 189, 190;
    marries Du Pin, 191.

  Lee, William, early Chicago exhorter, 144, 145;
    sketch, 408.

  Lee's Place (Hardscrabble), in Chicago massacre, 155-157, 159, 160.

  Legends of Fox River (of Green Bay), 56, 57;
    story of the little rail, 242-244;
    story of the red fox, 287-294;
    story of Sheesheebanze (little duck), 295-302.

  Le Mai, ----, Chicago fur trader, 146.

  Letendre, Jean B., French messenger, 83.

  Lincoln, Abraham, commissions John H. Kinzie, xviii.

  Lippincott & Co., J. B., republish _Wau-Bun_, xix.

  "Little Belt," English war vessel, 195.

  Little Chûte, Mrs. Kinzie at, 35, 333-336.

  Little Kaukauna, Réaume at, 399.

  Little Priest, Winnebago chief, 272.

  Logan, James, mentions Chicago, 408.

  Louisa, negro domestic, 68, 69, 81, 82, 84-86, 90, 94, 274.

  Louisiana Territory, Harrison's governorship, 388.

  Low, Nicholas, grandson of Haliburton, xiii, 147.

  Lytle, ----, Pennsylvania frontiersman, family stolen by Senecas,
      207-209, 212-216, 220, 222, 223.

  Lytle, Mrs. ----, wife of foregoing, captured by Indians, 209-212, 215,
      216, 220-223;
    at Detroit, 225, 226.

  Lytle, Eleanor. See Mrs. John Kinzie.

  Lytle, Maggie, flees from Indians, 213-215.

  Lytle, Thomas, flees from Indians, 213-215;
    death of, 224-227.

  McCoy, ----, missionary, 233.

  McKee, Col. Alexander, British Indian agent, 186, 192.

  McKenzie, Elizabeth, adventures of, xiv-xvi.

  McKenzie, Isaac, daughters captured by Shawanese, xiv, xv.

  Mackenzie, John, father of John Kinzie, xiii.

  Mackenzie, Mrs. John, wife of foregoing, xiii;
    marries Haliburton and Forsyth, xiii.

  McKenzie, Margaret, adventures of, xiv-xvi.

  McKillip, Capt. ----, marries Eleanor Lytle, 224.

  McKillip, Eleanor (Lytle), widow of foregoing, marries John Kinzie, xvi,
      149, 150.

  McKillip, Margaret. See Mrs. Lieut. L. T. Helm.

  Mackinac Island (Michillimackinac), origin of name, 11, 393;
    Hurons at, 396;
    calms off, 1;
    fur trade of, 150, 152, 326, 394, 395;
    massacre at, 323;
    held by English, 162, 164, 395, 396;
    Presbyterian mission, 6, 9, 394;
    Abbott at, 395;
    Bairds, 398;
    Beaumont, 413;
    Edward Biddie's marriage, 395;
    Charles Gratiot, 414;
    Healds, 188;
    Kinzies, xvi, 3-12;
    Laframboise, 395;
    Mazzuchelli, 411;
    Capt. Pierce's marriage, 395;
    view, 6.

  Mackinac boats, described, 394;
    used in fur trade, 8, 25-27, 344.

  Mackinaw City (Old Mackinac), seen by Mrs. Kinzie, 12.

  Mackinaw Company, fur trade of, 394.

  Macomb, ----, released by English, 196.

  Madison, naming of lakes, 405;
    Kinzies near site of, 100;
    early tavern, 405.

  Magill, Arthur, at Fort Winnebago, 314;
    escorts Mrs. Kinzie, 327-337.

  Magill, Julian, at Fort Winnebago, 278, 379;
    goes to Fort Howard, 331, 332.

  Magill, Juliette A., marries John H. Kinzie, xvii.
    See also, Mrs. John H. Kinzie.

  Mail service, at early Chicago, 145, 198;
    Peoria to Galena, 407.

  Man Eater, Winnebago chief, 253;
    in Black Hawk War, 323.

  Manitoulin Islands, calms off, 1.

  Maple sugar, made by Indians, 7, 8.

  Marcotte, Jean Baptiste, father of Madame Laframboise, 394.

  "Mariner," early lake schooner, 339, 340.

  Marquette, Father Jacques, Jesuit missionary, 396;
    discovers Mississippi, 403.

  Marsh, Rev. Cutting, missionary to Stockbridges, 400, 401;
    diary of, 415;
    met by Mrs. Kinzie, 32, 33;
    sketch, 401.

  Marten, in Northwest fur trade, 7.

  Mary, a servant, 379.

  Mâtâ, a blacksmith, 320, 327, 330, 334-337, 351;
    injury of daughter, 368-371.

  Mâtâ, Sophy, injured on ice, 368-371.

  Mauzheegawgaw swamp, Mrs. Kinzie crosses, 51, 309-312.

  Mazzuchelli, Rev. Samuel Charles, Catholic missionary, 266, 270, 375;
    sketch, 411.

  Menomonee Indians, French name for, 8, 52;
    relations with English, 7;
    salutation of dawn, 19, 20;
    marriage customs, 373;
    treaty with New York Indians, 14, 15;
    fur trade of, 150;
    Grignons related to, 20;
    in Black Hawk War, 330, 349, 416.
    See also Wishtayyun.

  Menomoneeville. See Shantytown.

  Methodists, met by Mrs. Kinzie, 136, 137.

  Miami Indians, friendly in Chicago massacre, 168, 172, 173;
    relations to English, 6, 7.

  Miami Rapids, Fort Defiance at, 224.

  Michigan, Sacs in, 407;
    Cass's governorship, 44;
    Porter's, 358;
    early Chicago mail, 198;
    militia in Black Hawk War, 416.

  Michigan City, Mich., genesis of, 143.

  Michillimackinac. See Mackinac Island.

  Miller, ----, Chicago resident, 143.

  Milwaukee (Milwaukie), John Kinzie's trade at, 150;
    Chicago prisoners at, 188;
    Parkman Club _Papers_, 401, 402.

  Miner, Rev. Jesse, missionary to Stockbridges, 401.

  Mineral Point, Wis., Judge Doty at, 25.

  Mink, in Northwest fur trade, 7.

  Minnesota, fur trade in, 412.

  Mishinemackinawgo Indians, name-givers to Michillimackinac, 393.

  Missions, Protestant, at Mackinac, 6, 8-11;
    among Winnebagoes, 265-268.
    See also, Cadle, Ferry, Kent, Marsh, Mazzuchelli, Miner, Catholics,
      Jesuits, and the several Protestant denominations.

  Missouri, Sac and Fox cession (1804), 411;
    early land surveys, 406.

  Mitchell, David, resident of Mackinac, 9.

  Mitchell, Mrs. David, at Mackinac, 10, 395.

  Moaway (the Wolf), Pottawattomie Indian, 138.

  Mohawk (Mohican) Indians, in Revolutionary War, 410;
    descendants in Wisconsin, 333.

  Montreal, fur trade entrepôt, 151, 154, 393, 399, 402;
    Sir John Johnson at, 410;
    schools of, 395.

  Morrin, Isidore, government blacksmith at Fort Winnebago, 262, 320, 385.

  Morrison, Col. James, entertains Kinzies, 104-109;
    sketch, 405.

  Morrison, Mrs. James, entertains Mrs. Kinzie, 104-107.

  Morrison's (Porter's) Grove, settled, 405;
    Kinzies at, 104-107, 109.

  Munsee Indians, move to Wisconsin, 401.

  Muskrat, in Northwest fur trade, 7.

  Musquakees. See Fox Indians.

  Myers, Granny, frontier settler, 214.

  Nanneebozho, Indian sprite, 242-244.

  "Napoleon," lake schooner, 230-233, 277.

  Naunongee, Pottawattomie chief, killed by Hays, 191.

  Navarino, Wis., founded by Whitney, 412;
    Kinzies at, 16, 17.

  Navigation. See Durham boats, Mackinac boats, Portages, Steamers,
      Voyageurs, and Newberry.

  Necedah, Wis., Winnebagoes near, 404.

  Neenah, Wis., Mrs. Kinzie on site of, 41-45.

  Neescotneemeg, Pottawattomie chief, 144, 182.

  Negroes, at Chicago, 233, 234;
    at Fort Winnebago, 68, 69, 81, 82, 84-86, 90.
    See also, Black Jim, David, Ephraim, Harry, and Louisa.

  Newberry, Oliver, owner of Lake schooner, 304, 339.

  New France, downfall, xiii, 394.

  Newhall, Dr. ----, Galena physician, 83.

  New York, William Forsyth at, xiii.

  New York Indians, 26. See also, Waubanakees.

  Nicolet, Jean, discovers Northwest, 403.

  Niles, Mich., John Kinzie at, 146;
    on mail route, 304.

  Northwest Company, organized, 394;
    Shaw's agency, 153, 154;
    employs Robert Stuart, 393.

  Nunns & Clark, piano manufacturers, 66.

  Ogee (Ogie), John, Indian lad, 119, 120.

  Ogee (Ogie), Joseph, ferryman, 120, 407.

  Ogee's (Ogie's) ferry, Mrs. Kinzie at, 114.

  Ogilvie, Gillespie & Co., fur traders, 402.

  Old Boilvin, a Winnebago, 285, 286.

  Old Queen, mother of Corn Planter, 211, 216-220.

  Old Smoker, an Indian, 327, 329, 341, 343.

  Olean Point, N. Y., Seneca village at, 211.

  Oneida Indians, move to Wisconsin, 401.
    See also, Eleazer Williams.

  Oshkosh, Wis., 402;
    settled, 413.

  Oswego, Ill., Mrs. Kinzie at, 131.

  Ottawa Indians, French appellation of, 52, 53;
    language, 287;
    at Point St. Ignace, 396;
    at Mackinac, 5-12;
    relations to English, 7;
    at Tippecanoe, 157;
    treaty of 1816, 388, 409;
    related to J. P. Beaubien, 407;
    met by Mrs. Kinzie, 32;
    Blackbird's _History_, 393.

  Otter, in Northwest fur trade, 7.

  Ouilmette, Antoine, Chicago settler, 182, 183, 185, 233.

  Ouilmette, Josette, daughter of foregoing, bond servant, 233, 236, 267,
      274, 277, 334-336, 351, 379.

  Ourand, Charles H., sketch of Fort Dearborn I, 156.

  Owen, Col. T. J. V., Indian agent, 227.

  Paquette, Pierre, Winnebago interpreter, 57, 88, 95, 130, 272, 284;
    marries Miss Crélie, 414;
    at Fort Winnebago, 356, 359, 361, 369, 372, 375;
    in Black Hawk War, 317, 320, 322, 323, 326-328, 344;
    keeps Bellefontaine, 413;
    sketch, 403.

  Paquette, Mrs. Pierre, wife of foregoing, 267, 318, 372.

  Paquette, Thérèse, daughter of foregoing, at Sunday school, 274.

  Parkman Club _Papers_, 401, 402.

  Path Valley, Pa., settled, 207.

  Patterson, ----, fur trader, 194.

  Pawnee Blanc (White Pawnee, Old Dandy), Winnebago chief, 66, 73-75.

  Pawnee Blanc, widow of, 284.

  Peach, ----, at Fort Winnebago, 264.

  Peesotum, a Pottawattomie, 175, 178.

  Peoria, Ill., fur trade at, 419;
    death of Point-au-Sable, 146;
    Lieut. Helm at, 186;
    trail to Galena, 406, 407;
    Chicago mail, 198.

  Peoria County, Ill., embraces Galena and Chicago, 407.

  Perry, Commodore Oliver H., victory on Lake Erie, 195.

  Peten Well, Wis., Winnebagoes at, 404.

  Petit Rocher, Wis., in Black Hawk War, 321.

  Philleo, Dr. Addison, Galena physician, 306, 310-312.

  Piché, Pierre, a French settler, 121, 131, 132, 134.

  Pierce, Capt. Benjamin K., commandant at Mackinac, 395.

  Pillon, ----, an engagé, 85, 94, 96-99, 263, 276, 320.

  Pillon, Mrs. ----, wife of foregoing, a servant, 94, 96.

  Pipes, as units of measure, 30, 34, 328, 330, 414, 415.

  Pittsburg, protects Western settlers, 206;
    Lytle at, 213, 215, 216.

  Plante, ----, an engagé, 85, 95, 103, 108, 121, 122, 126, 263, 276, 277,
      313, 320.

  Plympton, Capt. Joseph C, at Fort Winnebago, 360;
    sketch, 418.

  Point-au-Sable, Jean Baptiste, settles at Chicago, 146.

  Point St. Ignace, Marquette at, 12, 396.

  Pontiac, at taking of Mackinac, 12.

  Portier, Jacques, fur trader, 402;
    met by Mrs. Kinzie, 49.

  Portage, Wis., winding of Fox River at, 57, 58;
    fur trade, 405;
    trail to Chicago, 108;
    surrender of Red Bird, 417;
    supplies for Sugar Creek, 100;
    Mazzuchelli at, 266.
    See also. Fort Winnebago, Kinzies, and Paquette.

  Portages, Chicago, 146, 408;
    Fox-Wisconsin, 60, 403;
    Grand Chûte, 85-38, 345-348;
    Kaukauna, 31-34;
    Little Kaukauna, 35.
    See also, the several localities.

  Porter, Gov. George B., Indian superintendent, 358, 363, 364, 366, 386;
    governor of Michigan Territory, 418.

  Portier (Porthier), Mrs. Joseph, at Chicago, 232.

  Pottawattomie Indians, French appellation of, 52, 53;
    language, 127, 128, 130;
    relations to English, 7;
    fur trade of, 150;
    Point-au-Sable among, 146;
    in Chicago massacre, 154-191;
    at Tippecanoe, 157;
    restrained by Shaubena, 197;
    at Chicago, 138;
    at Wolf Point, 138;
    treaty of 1816, 388, 409;
    met by Mrs. Kinzie, 32;
    in Black Hawk War, 272, 392, 412;
    treaties of 1836, 409;
    Ouilmette related to, 233;
    Tomah, 376-379;
    removal from Lake Michigan, 120.
    See also, Big Foot, Billy Caldwell, Black Partridge, Alexander
      Robinson, Shaubena, and other chiefs.

  Powell, William, fur trader, 329, 330, 333, 350.

  Prairie du Chien, Wis., fur trade at, 414;
    captured by British, 398;
    early justice at, 28;
    school, 368, 371;
    Doty's court, 397;
    imprisonment of Red Bird, 417, 418;
    Black Hawk's surrender, 354, 355, 417;
    Boilvin's agency, 285, 400;
    Street's agency, 404;
    Fisher at, 398;
    Charles Gratiot, 414;
    Johnson, 405;
    Kinzies, xvii, 42-45, 314, 354-356;
    Mrs. Mitchell, 10;
    Rolette, 18, 398.

  Prairie du Sac, in Black Hawk War, 416.

  Presbyterians. See Kent, Marsh, Miner, and Stockbridges.

  Proctor, Gen. Henry A., British commandant at Detroit, 186, 192-196.

  Prophet, Black Hawk's adviser, 392, 417.

  Protestants. See the several denominations.

  Puans (Puants). See Winnebago Indians.

  Quashquame, Sac chief, on land cessions, 388, 389.

  Quincy, Ill., fur trade near, 419.

  Quebec, Wolfe's victory, xiii;
    John Kinzie at, xiii, xiv, 147, 148, 195, 196.

  Réaume, Charles, Green Bay justice, 27, 28;
    sketch, 399, 400.

  Récollet missionaries, at Detroit, 396.

  Rector, Col. William, surveyor-general of Illinois, 406.

  Red Bird, Winnebago chief, uprising of, 197, 249, 319, 406, 414;
    imprisonment at Fort Winnebago, 357;
    sketch, 417, 418.

  Revolutionary War, 399, 400, 410.

  Reynolds, Gov. John, in Black Hawk War, 355, 412.

  Richardson, Maj. ----, _Hardscrabble_, and _Waunangee_, 155.

  Ridgway, Isaac A., view of Fort Winnebago, 358.

  River Alleghany, settlement on, 206, 207;
    captivity of Lytle family, 211.

  River Au Sable, friendly Indians on, 186, 189.

  River Bad Ax, battle of, 416, 417.

  River Baraboo (Barribault), Winnebagoes on, 72,270, 321, 366, 382, 414.

  River Calumet (at Chicago), Indians at, 157, 191;
    hunters, 201;
    Lee, 408.

  River Chicago, 144;
    in massacre of 1812, 175;
    portage, 146, 408.

  River Des Moines, street on, 404.

  River Desplaines (Aux Plaines), Pottawattomies on, 409;
    in Chicago massacre, 182, 187;
    Kinzies on, 137, 138, 234, 376.

  River Detroit, Fort Maiden on, 194;
    ferry, 225.

  River Du Page, Mrs. Kinzie on, 134-136.

  River Fox (of Green Bay), 410;
    Indian tradition of, 56, 57;
    Wolf confounded with, 53;
    at Portage, 58-60, 403;
    as a freight way, 231, 364;
    description and tradition of Grand Butte des Morts, 402;
    of Petit Butte des Morts, 401, 402;
    fur trade on, 396, 399;
    Jesuits, 413;
    Stockbridges, 333-336;
    Winnebagoes, 404;
    Fort Howard built, 397;
    Camp Smith, 396;
    Presbyterian mission on, 32, 33, 401;
    Episcopalian mission, 32, 33;
    in Black Hawk War, 415;
    Kinzies on, 13-60, 101, 327-337;
    Wild Cat, 358, 359.

  River Fox (of Illinois), in treaty of 1804, 388;
    Kinzies on, 182-134, 237, 238, 410.

  River Gasconade, in treaty of 1804, 388.

  River Grand, death of Laframboise, 394.

  River Illinois, fur trade on, 150;
    in treaty of 1804, 388;
    Chicago prisoners on, 188;
    Mrs. Holt, 179;
    Pottawattomies, 409;
    Chicago canal, 410.

  River Iowa (Ihoway), Sacs and Foxes on, 391.

  River Jefferson, in treaty of 1804, 388.

  River Kanawha, Isaac McKenzie on, xiv.

  River Kankakee, fur trade on, 150;
    Ottawas on, 409;
    hostile Indians from, 187, 188.

  River Maumee, John Kinzie on, xiv, 149.

  River Milwaukee (Melwakee), Pottawattomies on, 409.

  River Mississippi, discovered by Joliet and Marquette, 396, 403;
    Cass's expedition to sources of, 2, 27, 393, 397;
    Pottawattomies west of, 409;
    Sacs and Foxes on, 52, 269, 270, 272, 273, 391, 411, 412, 416, 417;
    Sac trail to Canada, 120, 121;
    Indian lands on, 266;
    Sac cessions, 388, 389;
    fur trade, 6, 152, 419;
    in War of 1812-15, 400;
    in Red Bird uprising, 197;
    in Black Hawk War, 314, 315, 354, 391, 392;
    canoe trips to, 17;
    First regiment ordered to, 260;
    workmen from, 262;
    Green Bay excursionists on, 303;
    travellers from, at Bellefontaine, 312;
    Boilvin on, 28;
    Johnson, 405;
    John H. Kinzie, 42-45;
    Mrs. Mitchell, 10.

  River Missouri, Pottawattomies on, 120, 200.

  River Monongahela, settlement on, 206.

  River Pecatonica, Mrs. Kinzie on, 115, 406.

  River Plum, settlement on, 207.

  River Raisin, massacre on, 192, 193.

  River Rock, fur trade on, 150;
    Chicago prisoners, 188;
    Sacs, 387-392;
    Winnebagoes, 160, 272;
    Black Hawk's village, 407;
    in Black Hawk War, 65, 315, 317, 323, 343, 411, 412, 415, 417;
    Dixon's ferry, 116-121, 406, 407;
    crossing at Lake Koshkonong, 94;
    Ogee's ferry, 114;
    Mrs. Kinzie on, 252-254.

  River Root, Hogan on, 408.

  River St. Clair, cholera on, 340.

  River St. Joseph's, in Chicago massacre, 171.

  River Susquehannah, limit of white settlement, 206.

  River Thames, Thomas Lytle on, 224-226;
    battle of, 404, 405, 409.

  River Tippecanoe, treaty of 1836, 409.

  River Trench. See River Thames.

  River Wabash, Indian troubles on, 167;
    hostile Pottawattomies from, 181, 185;
    Chicago prisoners on, 188;
    as state boundary, 397.

  River Wisconsin, at Portage, 60, 203, 365, 366;
    in treaty of 1804, 388;
    early canoe voyages on, 17, 18;
    Sacs on, 417;
    Winnebagoes, 404;
    John H. Kinzie, 314;
    Roys, 275;
    in Black Hawk War, 321, 329, 344, 355, 416, 417.

  River Wolf, mistaken for Fox, 53.

  River Yellow, treaty of 1836, 409.

  Roberts, Charles, canal commissioner, 409.

  Roberts, Capt. Charles, captures Mackinac, 395.

  Robineau, ----, a voyageur, 345;
    blacksmith's helper, 368-371.

  Robinson, Alexander, Pottawattomie chief, 144;
    befriends whites, 187, 197, 249;
    sketch, 409.

  Rock (Rocky) Island, Ill., Davenport at, 391;
    Street's agency, 404;
    Black Hawk at, 412;
    cholera, 355, 356, 415;
    treaty, 355, 357, 358.

  Rocky Mountains, discovery of passes, 405, 406.

  Rohl-Smith, Carl, artist of Chicago massacre monument, bas-reliefs by,
      168, 172, 174, 176.

  Rolette, Miss, ----, at Fort Winnebago, 377.

  Rolette, Joseph, Indian sobriquet for, 80;
    in Boilvin's court, 28;
    at Fort Winnebago, 71;
    stories, of, 17-19;
    sketch, 398.

  Ronan, Ensign George, in Chicago massacre, 156, 159, 163, 174, 176.

  Root, Gen. Erastus, treaty commissioner, 15, 19.

  Roy, François, fur trader, 405.

  Roy, Pierre, son of foregoing, 95, 103, 116, 126.

  Roy family, at Portage, 275.

  Rum traffic, opposed by Robert Stuart, 393.

  Sac (Sauk) Indians, allied with Foxes, 52, 402;
    relations to English, 7;
    great trail to Canada, 120, 121, 123, 124, 126, 407;
    in treaty of 1804, 411, 412;
    land session by, 387-391;
    at Rock Island, 404;
    on Mississippi, 269, 270;
    Forsyth's agency, 419;
    met by Mrs. Kinzie, 32;
    in Black Hawk War, 116, 272, 273, 314-371, 387-392, 402, 411, 414-417.

  St. Augustine, Fla., settlement of, 12.

  St. Jean, ----, fur trader, 152, 153.

  St. Joseph's, Ind., fur trade at, 180;
    in Chicago massacre, 186-188;
    John Kinzie at, xiv, 149;
    mission, 233, 236.

  St. Louis, Sac treaty of 1804, 389;
    in War of 1812-15, 400;
    treaty of 1816, 409;
    military post, 387, 391;
    treaties at, 387-391;
    Hempstead, 404;
    Surveyor Thompson, 404.

  St. Martin, Alexis, patient of Dr. Beaumont, 413.

  St. Vrain, Felix, Indian agent, killed in Black Hawk War, 116, 316, 392.

  Saginaw Bay, Mich., fur trade at, 419.

  Salt Creek, Kinzies on, 237.

  Sandusky, Ohio, John Kinzie at, xiv, 149.

  Sandwich, Ont., Jesuits at, 12, 396;
    John Kinzie, 194;
    Forsyths, 205.

  Sangamon County, Ill., fur trade of, 150.

  Sauteurs. See Chippewa Indians.

  Sawmills, established by Whitney, 412.

  Schoolcraft, Henry R., views from _Indian Tribes_, 6, 140;
    _Sources of the Mississippi_, 393.

  Schools. See Education.

  Scotch, in Northwest fur trade, xiii, xiv, 394, 398.

  Scott, Capt. Martin, at Fort Dearborn, 144, 202;
    at Fort Howard, 343;
    sketch, 410.

  Scott, Gen. Winfield, in Black Hawk War, 355, 415.

  Seneca Indians, captivity of Mrs. John Kinzie, 205-223.

  Seneca, Ill., Pottawattomies near, 409.

  Shantytown (at Green Bay) , genesis of, 396;
    Kinzies at, 15, 17, 337.

  Shaubena (Chambly, Shaubeenay, Shaubenah), Pottawattomie chief, befriends
      whites, 197, 249;
    portrait, 198;
    sketch, 409.

  Shaw, ----, fur trade agent, 153, 154.

  Shawanee (Shawnee) Indians, in Dunmore's War, xiv;
    capture McKenzie girls, xiv, xv;
    at Tippecanoe, 157.

  Shawneeaukee, John H. Kinzie's Indian name, xvii, 5, 43, 45, 49, 54, 60,
      74, 87, 102, 180, 194, 235, 248, 257, 273, 280, 308, 322.

  Shawneetown, Ill., Street at, 404.

  Sheaffe, Col. ----, English officer, 187.

  Sheesheebanze (little duck), story of, 295-302.

  Shoshone Indians, Doty treats with, 397.

  Shot-making, at Helena, 412.

  Sinclair, Commodore Arthur, attacks Mackinac Island, 395.

  Sinsinawa Mound, Dominican Academy at, 411.

  Sioux Indians, raid Chequamegon Bay, 396;
    Mrs. Mitchell related to, 10;
    met by Mrs. Kinzie, 32;
    in Black Hawk War, 416.

  Smith, Col. Joseph Lee, establishes Camp Smith, 396.

  Snakes, at Portage, 21.

  Society in Scotland for Propagating Christian Knowledge, 401.

  Songs, by French-Canadian voyageurs, 28-30, 56, 327, 400.

  South Kaukauna. See Kaukauna.

  Southwest Company, organized, 394;
    at Mackinac, 150.

  Spanish land grants at St. Louis, 146.

  Springfield, Ill., Sac lands sold at, 390, 391;
    Dixon, 407.

  Stages, at Buffalo Grove, 118.

  Stambaugh, Col. Samuel C., Indian agent, 305, 307;
    in Black Hawk War, 349, 416;
    sketch, 413.

  Stanley, Webster, founds Oshkosh, 413.

  Statesburg. See Kaukauna.

  Steamers, early, on great lakes, xvii;
    on Mississippi River, 353, 416.
    See also, "Henry Clay," "Uncle Sam," and "Warrior."

  Stickney, Gardner P., "Use of Maize by Wisconsin Indians," 402.

  Stillman, Maj. Isaiah, routed by Black Hawk, 417.

  Stillman's Run. See Sycamore Creek.

  Stirling, Mark, deserts George Forsyth, 148, 149.

  Stockbridge (Waubanakee, Waubeenakee) Indians, Presbyterian mission to,
      32, 348, 400, 401, 415;
    visited by Mrs. Kinzie, 26, 333-336.

  Stockbridge, Wis., Indian village, 401.

  Stoddard, Maj. ----, commandant at St. Louis, 387.

  Street, Gen. Joseph M., Indian agent at Prairie du Chien, 72, 354;
    receives Black Hawk, 417;
    sketch, 404.

  Stuart, David, with American Fur Company, 393.

  Stuart, Robert, fur-trade agent, entertains Kinzies, 3, 4;
    interest in missions, 6;
    sketch, 393, 394.

  Sulky, ----, a soldier, 91.

  Sully, R. M., portrait of Black Hawk, 354.

  Sugar Creek, Lapierre on, 100, 320;
    Sophy Mâtâ's accident at, 368-370.

  Sycamore Creek, Black Hawk's victory at, 354, 393, 417.

  Talk-English, a Winnebago, 64, 65.

  Taverns, at Bellefontaine, 60, 351, 413;
    at Chicago, 143, 144, 407;
    Madison, 405;
    Oshkosh, 413.

  Tecumseh, at treaty of Greenville, 408;
    killed at Thames, 405, 409.

  Thompson, James, surveys Chicago town site, 409;
    his map, 142.

  Thunder Bay, storms off, 1-3.

  Tippecanoe, battle of, 157, 159, 167.

  Tomah, an Indian lad, 376-379.

  Topeeneebee, Pottawattomie chief, befriends Kinzies, 171, 172, 185, 186,

  Toshunnuck, a Winnebago, 254, 255.

  Trails, evolution of Indian, 405, 406;
    great Sac, to Canada, 120, 121, 123, 124, 126, 407;
    Butte des Morts to Portage, 51, 53;
    Dixon's to Chicago, 117, 120-139;
    Dixon's to Peoria, 121;
    Fort Winnebago to Chicago, 94-139;
    Gleason's to Portage, 56;
    Hamilton's Diggings to Kellogg's, 114-116;
    Kellogg's to Ogee's, 114;
    Morrison's to Hamilton's Diggings, 107-111;
    Peoria to Galena, 406, 407;
    Piché's to Chicago, 132;
    at Portage, 322;
    Portage to Chicago, 108.
    See also, Portages.

  Trail Creek (Rivière du Chemin), Miller on, 143.

  Treaties, of Ghent, 396;
    Paris (1783), 220;
    Greenville, 408;
    with Sacs and Foxes (1804), 411, 412;
    St. Louis (1816), 409;
    Sac land cessions, 387-391;
    Menomonees and New York Indians (Waubanakees), 14, 15;
    at Rock Island, 355, 357, 358;
    with Pottawattomies (1836), 409;
    with Shoshones, 397.

  Tremont House, Chicago, 143.

  Turcotte, ----, a blacksmith, 320, 369, 370.

  Turkey Creek, treaty of 1836, 409.

  Turner, Andrew J., "History of Fort Winnebago," 411.

  Turtle Creek, at Beloit, 411;
    Winnebagoes on, 72;
    Kinzies, 251.

  Twenty-mile Prairie, Mrs. Kinzie on, 256, 257.

  Twiggs, Maj. David Emanuel, at Fort Winnebago, 58, 68, 84, 89, 90, 96;
    entertains Kinzies, 259, 260;
    leaves Fort Winnebago, 273, 274;
    sketch, 399.

  Twiggs, Mrs. David E., at Fort Winnebago, 25, 58, 68, 69, 89.

  Twiggs, Lizzie, birth of, 92.

  "Uncle Sam," early lake steamer, 189.

  Van Cleve, Lieut. Horatio Phillips, at Fort Winnebago, 379;
    sketch, 418.

  Van Cleve, Mrs. H. P. (Charlotte Ouisconsin Clark), wife of foregoing,
      _Three Score Years and Ten_, xix, 415.

  Van Voorhees, Dr. ----, in Chicago massacre, 156, 173, 174.

  Victoire, family servant, 376.

  Vincennes, Ind., Indian council at, 197;
    in War of Revolution, 399.

  Virginia, capture of McKenzie girls, xiv-xvi.

  Vitelle, ----, an engagé, 335, 336.

  Voyageurs, characteristics of service, 150-154;
    pipes as unit of measure, 30, 34, 328, 330, 414, 415;
    songs of, 28-30, 56, 327, 400;
    on Mackinac boats, 394;
    at Butte des Morts, 49;
    at Fort Winnebago, 66, 67;
    on Lake Superior, 400;
    at Prairie du Chien, 414;
    in service of Kinzies, 21, 22, 25-57, 327-337.

  Wallace, ----, at Wolf's Point, 198.

  Wapello, Fox chief, 404.

  War of 1812-15, fur trade in, 402;
    Sandusky campaign, 403;
    capture of Prairie du Chien, 400;
    Col. Cutler in, 418;
    Winnebagoes, 404.

  "Warrior," steamer in Black Hawk War, 353, 416.

  Washington, D. C., Shaubena at, 409;
    Winnebagoes, 264, 321, 404.

  Waubanakees. See Stockbridge Indians.

  Waubansee, Pottawattomie chief, 128;
    befriends whites, 178, 181, 183.

  Waubeeneenah, Pottawattomie chief, 175, 176.

  Waukaunkau (Little Snake), hostage for Winnebago suspects, 357-362.

  Waupaca, Cutting Marsh at, 401.

  Waygeemarkin, an Indian magician, 295-302.

  Wayne, Gen. Anthony, fights Indians, 224.

  Weeks, ----, entertains Kinzies, 187.

  Wekau, a Winnebago, friend of Red Bird, 417, 418.

  Wells, Capt. William, in Chicago massacre, 168, 172, 175, 177, 178;
    illustration of death of, 176.

  Wentworth, ----, Chicago tavern-keeper, 143, 144;
    met by Mrs. Kinzie, 138.

  Whigs, appoint Street, 404.

  Whistler, Capt. John, builds Fort Dearborn I, 407;
    sketch from plans, 156.

  Whistler, Maj. William, receives Red Bird's surrender, 417.

  White, ----, killed in Chicago massacre, 157, 160.

  White Crow (Kauraykausaykah, Kauraykawsawkaw, Kawneeshaw, Le Borgne),
      Winnebago chief, 65, 272, 273;
    delivers prisoners to whites, 361;
    sketch, 404.

  White Ox, a Winnebago murderer, 9.

  Whitney, Daniel, entertains Kinzies, 305;
    visits Kinzies, 303;
    sketch, 412.

  Wight, William W., on Eleazer Williams, 401.

  Wild Cat, Winnebago chief, 45, 65, 383, 386;
    opposes land cession, 358, 359.

  Wild cat (animal), in Northwest fur trade, 7.

  Wild doves, enormous flocks of, 415.

  Wild rice, grown by Northwest Indians, 8, 45, 56;
    bibliography, 402.

  Will County, Ill., Ottawas in, 409.

  Williams, Rev. Eleazer, missionary to Oneidas, met by Mrs. Kinzie,
      32, 33;
    sketch, 401.

  Williams, M. C., _Old Mission Church of Mackinac Island_, 394.

  Williamsburg, L. I., John Kinzie at, xiii, xiv.

  Wing, ----, accompanies Kinzies, 306, 311, 312.

  Winnebago (Puants) Indians, origin of name "Puants," 52, 53, 402, 403;
    vocabulary by Boilvin, 400;
    customs and dances, 278-286;
    scalp dance, 364, 365;
    gather wild rice, 46;
    marriage customs, 372-375;
    indifferent to education, 88, 89;
    effect of missions on, 265-268;
    fur trade of, 150;
    relations to English, 7;
    in Chicago massacre, 160;
    at Tippecanoe, 157;
    in Red Bird uprising, 197, 249, 319, 406, 417, 418;
    in Black Hawk War, 272, 273, 315-371, 387-392, 409, 412, 416, 417;
    capture Black Hawk, 404;
    surrender of suspects, 357-363;
    escape of prisoners, 366-368, 384, 385;
    starving time near Fort Winnebago, 380-383;
    visit Eastern cities, 64, 65, 75-78;
    payment of annuities to, 15, 262, 272, 278-286, 363, 364, 366;
    beef and horses, 413;
    principal villages of, 72;
    on Baraboo River, 72-80;
    at Butte des Morts, 48, 49;
    Fort Winnebago, 60-66, 72-80, 86-89, 264-303;
    Four Lakes, 102;
    on Lake Koshkonong, 253;
    at Prairie du Chien, 72;
    Turtle Creek band, 411;
    Street's agency, 404;
    White Ox, a murderer, 9;
    related to Paquette, 403;
    portrait of types, 64.
    See also, Fort Winnebago, John H. Kinzie, Mrs. John H. Kinzie, and the
        several chiefs.

  Winnebago rapids, Mrs. Kinzie at, 333.

  Winnebago swamp, 121, 123.

  Winnemeg (Catfish), Pottawattomie chief, befriends whites, 162, 163, 178.

  Winnosheek, Winnebago chief, 317.

  Wiota, Wis., founded, 406.

  Wisconsin, Hurons in, 396;
    first settled, 398;
    Sac and Fox cession (1804), 411, 412;
    _Wau-Bun_ as historical material for, xx.

  Wisconsin Heights, battle of, 416, 417.

  Wisconsin Historical Society, Secretary Draper names Madison lakes, 405;
    dedicates tablet to Allouez, 413;
    possesses Forsyth MSS., 419;
    Marsh MSS., 401;
    furnishes illustrations to this volume, 14, 64, 354;
    _Collections_, xix, 373, 395, 399, 400, 411, 415.

  Wishtayyun (blacksmith), Menomonee guide, 22, 32, 42, 306, 307.

  Wolcott, Dr. Alexander, Indian agent, 197;
    household of, 233;
    death of, 83, 84, 201.

  Wolcott, Mrs. Judge ----, 168.

  Wolf, in Northwest fur trade, 7.

  Wolf Point, 143-145;
    Mrs. Kinzie at, 138;
    Hunt and Wallace, 198.

  Wolf's Creek, McKenzie on, xiv.

  Wolfe, Gen. ----, on Plains of Abraham, xiii.

  Wright's Woods, at Chicago, 202.

  Wyandot Indians, relations to English, 6, 7;
    John H. Kinzie among, xvii, 44, 45.

  Yellow Banks, Black Hawk at, 412.

  Yellow Thunder (Waukaunzeekah), Winnebago chief, 75;
    sketch, 404.

  Yellow Thunder, Mrs. (Washington Woman), 75-78, 383.

  Young Dandy. See Four-Legs.

  Ypsilanti, Mich., genesis of, 167.


       *       *       *       *       *

Transcriber Notes

Illustrations were moved so that paragraphs were not split and the
illustrations between page 140 and 141 were moved in front of page 140
(start of Chapter XVII). The hyphenation (or lack thereof) and some
alternate spellings for native words and names (ex., Pottawattomie and
Pottowattamie) were left as printed. Other minor typos were corrected.

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