Native American Biographies

Appanoose

Appanoose was a chief who presided over a band of the Sacs. His name, in the language of that tribe, signified "A Chief When a Child," indicating that he inherited his position. It was said he was equal in rank with Keokuk, but he did not possess the influence of the latter. He was one of the "peace chiefs" during the Black Hawk War. During the last occupation of Iowa soil by the Sacs and Foxes, Appanoose had his village near the site of the present city of Ottumwa. His people cultivated a portion of the ground on which that city is located. He was one of the delegation sent to Washington in 1837, at which time he visited with the other chiefs the city of Boston, where they were invited to a meeting in Fanueil Hall. On that occasion he made the most animated speech, both in manner and matter that was delivered by the chiefs. After Keokuk had spoken, Appanoose arose and said:

"You have heard just now what my chief has to say. All our chiefs and warriors are very much gratified by our visit to this town. Last Saturday they were invited to a great house, and now they are in the great council-house. They are very much pleased with so much attention. This we cannot reward you for now, but shall not forget it, and hope the Great Spirit will reward you for it. This is the place which our forefathers once inhabited. I have often heard my father and grandfather say they lived near the sea-coast where the white man first came. I am glad to hear all this from you. I suppose it is put in a book, where you learn all these things. As far as I can understand the language of the white people, it appears to me that the Americans have attained a very high rank among the white people. It is the same with us, though I say it myself. Where we live beyond the Mississippi, I am respected by all people, and they consider me the tallest among them. I am happy that two great men meet and shake hands with each other."

As Appanoose concluded his speech, he suited the action to the word by extending his hand to Gov. Everett, amid the shouts of applause from the audience, who were not a little amused at the self-complacency of the orator. But few of the incidents in the life of this chief have passed into history. His name has been perpetuated in that of one of the Iowa counties.

[History of Keokuk County, Iowa, 1880; submitted by cddd]


Black Hawk

Black Hawk, the most relentless foe to the whites, and one of the very last to smoke with them the calumet of peace, was born at the Sac village on Rock River, in Illinois, in 1767.

At fifteen years of age, having wounded an enemy, he was permitted to paint, wear feathers, and to join the braves in their war-dances and on the war-path. Shortly after, he succeeded in "killing his man" in battle, and then he was accounted a brave, and permitted to join in the "scalp-dance," an honor of which he was extremely proud.

Not long after, the Northwestern Territory came into the possession of the United States, and the fears of the Indians were aroused with the belief that the white men were determined to wrest their territory from their possession, a fear which history shows was too well-founded.

There were a few brave and patriotic spirits who resolved to stain the graves of their forefathers with their own blood, before they would yield their burial and hunting grounds to the ruthless invaders and spoilers. Among the foremost of these was the Prophet and Black Hawk, who traveled and visited all the Western tribes, stirring them up to mortal hate and strife against the whole race of white men.

From this time until he fell into the hands of the Americans, he pursued them with the most determined and savage barbarity. This conflict has been designated as the "Black Hawk War."

Conquered at length, a treaty of peace was negotiated, and five million acres of land purchased of the Indians by the Government, for twenty-three cents per acre.

Thus parting with his old hunting-grounds, Black Hawk turned, with a mournful spirit, to those remote prairies whither civilization compelled the reluctant steps of the "poor Indian."

While traveling through the cities of the Union, at a ball given in honor of Washington's birthday, he was complimented, to which he replied as follows:

"It has pleased the Great Spirit that I am here today. The earth is our mother, and we are permitted upon it. A few snows ago, I was fighting against the white people: perhaps I was wrong. But that is past—it is buried; let it be forgotten. I love my towns and corn-fields on the Rock River; it was a beautiful country. I fought for it, but now it is yours; keep it as the Sacs did. I was once a warrior, but now I am poor KeoKuk has been the cause of what I am; do not blame him. I love to look upon the Mississippi; I have looked upon it from a child; I love that beautiful river; my home has always been upon its banks. I thank you for your friendship. I will say no more."

Not long after, this famous old Chief, worn out with sorrow and exposure to the chill winds of the Western States, ended his checkered life at the camp on the Des Moines River, Iowa, on the 3d of October, 1838, in the seventy-fourth year of his age.

[Biographies of Two Hundred & Fifty Distinguished National Men, 1871, submitted by Cathy Danielson]

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Black Hawk; Treaty of 1804; Black Hawk's account of the Treaty; Lieut. Pike; Ft. Edwards; Ft. Madison; Black Hawk and the British; Keokuk recognized as Chief; Ft. Armstrong; Sac and Fox Villages; Black Hawk's "British Band"; Black Hawk War; Black Hawk's old age; His death in Iowa; His remains carried away, but recovered.

THIS renowned chief, the "noblest Roman of them all," was born at the Sac village on Rock river, about the year 1767. His first introduction to the notice of the whites seems to have been in 1804, when William Henry Harrison, then the Governor of Indiana Territory, concluded his treaty with the Sac and Fox nation for the lands bordering on Rock river. Black Hawk was then simply a chief, though not by election or inheritance, of his own band of Sac warriors, but from that time he was the most prominent man in the Sac and Fox nation. He considered the action of the four chiefs who represented the Indians in making this treaty as unjust and refused to consider it binding. The territory ceded embraced over fifty-one millions of acres, extending almost from opposite St. Louis to the Wisconsin river. He claimed that the chiefs or braves who made the treaty had no authority to make it, and that they had been sent to St. Louis, where the treaty was negotiated, for quite a different purpose, namely: to procure the release of one of their people who was held there as a prisoner on charge of killing a white man. The United States regarded this treaty as a bona fide transaction, claiming that the lands were sold by responsible men of the tribes, and that it was further ratified by a part of the tribes with Gov. Edwards and Auguste Choteau, in September, 1815, and again with the same commissioners in 1816. They claimed that the Indians were only to occupy the lands at the Sac village on Rock river until they were surveyed and sold by the government, when they were to vacate them. The treaty of St. Louis was signed by five chiefs instead of four, although Black Hawk claimed that the latter number only were sent to St. Louis for a different purpose. One of these was Pash-e-pa-ho, a head chief among the Sacs. Black Hawk himself thus describes the return of the chiefs to Rock Island after the treaty:

"Quash-qua-me and party remained a long time absent. They at length returned, and encamped a short distance below the village, but did not come up that day, nor did any person approach their camp. They appeared to be dressed in fine coats, and had medals. From these circumstances we were in hopes that they had brought good news. Early the next morning the council lodge was crowded. Quash-qua-me came up and said that on their arrival in St. Louis they met their American father, and explained to him their business, and urged the release of their friend. The American chief told them he wanted land, and that they had agreed to give him some on the west side of the Mississippi, and some on the Illinois side, opposite the Jeffreon; that when the business was all arranged, they expected their friend released to come home with them. But about the time they were ready to start, their friend was let out of prison, who ran a short distance, and was shot dead! This was all myself or nation knew of the treaty of 1804. It has been explained to me since. I find, by that treaty, that all our country east of the Mississippi, and south of the Jeffreon, was ceded to the United States for one thousand dollars a year!"

The treaty was doubtless made in good faith on the part of the commissioners, and with the full conviction that it was by authority of the tribes. From this time forward Black Hawk seems to have entertained a distrust of the Americans.

Although Spain had ceded the country west of the Mississippi to France in 1801, the former power still held possession until its transfer to the United States by France. Black Hawk and his band were at St. Louis at this time, and he was invited to be present at the ceremonies connected with the change of authorities. He refused the invitation; and in giving an account of the transaction, said:

"I found many sad and gloomy faces, because the United States were about to take possession of the town and country. Soon after the Americans came, I took my band and went to take leave of our Spanish father. The Americans came to see him also. Seeing them approach, we passed out of one door as they entered another, and immediately started in our canoes for our village on Rock river, not liking the change any more than our friends appeared to at St. Louis. On arriving at our village, we gave the news that strange people had arrived at St. Louis, and that we should never see our Spanish father again. The information made all our people sorry."

In August, 1805, Lieut. Zebulon M. Pike ascended the river from St. Louis, for the purpose of holding councils with the Indians, and selecting sites for military posts within the country recently acquired from France. At the mouth of Rock river he had a personal interview with Black Hawk, the latter being favorably impressed with the young lieutenant. Speaking of this interview, Black Hawk himself said:

"A boat came up the river with a young American chief, and a small party of soldiers. We heard of them soon after they passed Salt river. Some of our young braves watched them every day, to see what sort of people he had on board. The boat at length arrived at Rock Island, and the young chief came on shore with his interpreter, and made a speech, and gave us some presents. "We, in turn, presented them with meat and such other provisions as we had to spare. We were well pleased with the young chief. He gave us good advice, and said our American father would treat us well."

Lieut. Pike's expedition was soon followed by the erection of Fort Edwards and Fort Madison, the former on the site of the present town of Warsaw, Illinois, and the latter on the site of the present town of Fort Madison, Iowa. When these forts were being erected, the Indians sent down delegations, headed by some of their chiefs, to have an interview with the Americans. Those who visited Fort Edwards returned apparently satisfied with what was being done. The erection of Fort Madison they claimed was a violation of the treaty of 1804. In that treaty the United States had agreed that if "any white persons should form a settlement on their lands, such intruders should forthwith be removed." Fort Madison was erected within the territory reserved for the Indians, and this they considered an intrusion. Sometime afterward a party under the leadership of Black Hawk and Pash-e-pa-ho attempted its destruction. They sent spies to watch the movements of the garrison. Five soldiers who came out were fired upon by the Indians, and two of the soldiers were killed. They kept up the attack for several days. Their efforts to destroy the fort being unsuccessful, they returned to Rock river.

When the war of 1812 broke out, Black Hawk and his band allied themselves with the British, which was the origin of his party, at a later date, being known as the "British Band." In narrating the circumstances which induced him to join the British, he says:

"Several of the chiefs and head men of the Sacs and Foxes were called upon to go to Washington to see the Great Father. On their return they related what had been said and done. They said the Great Father wished them, in the event of a war taking place with England, not to interfere on either side, but to remain neutral. He did not want our help, but wished us to hunt and support our families and live in peace. He said that British traders would not be permitted to come on the Mississippi to furnish us with goods, but that we should be supplied by an American trader. Our chiefs then told him that the British traders always gave them credit in the fall for guns, powder and goods to enable us to hunt and clothe our families. He replied that the trader at Fort Madison would have plenty of goods; that we should go there in the fall, and he would supply us on credit, as the British traders had done."

According to Black Hawk, this proposition pleased his people, and they went to Fort Madison to receive their promised outfit for the winter's hunt, but notwithstanding the promise of the Great Father, at Washington, the trader would not give them credit. In reference to their disappointment, Black Hawk says:

"Few of us slept that night; all was gloom and discontent. In the morning a canoe was seen descending the river; it soon arrived, bearing an express, who brought intelligence that a British trader had landed at Rock Island, with two boats loaded with goods, and requested us to come up immediately, because he had good news for us, and a variety of presents. The express presented us with tobacco, pipes and wampum. The news ran through our camp like fire on a prairie. Our lodges were soon taken down, and all started for Rock Island. Here ended all hopes of our remaining at peace, having been forced into the war by being deceived."

Black Hawk and his band then espoused the cause of the British, who, as in the ease of Tecumseh, gave him the title of "Gen. Black Hawk." But a large portion of the Sacs and Foxes, at the head of whom was Keokuk, chose to remain neutral, as well as to abide by the treaty of 1804. Of this party Keokuk was the recognized chief. The nation was divided into the "war party" and "peace party." Black Hawk maintained his fidelity to the British until the end of the war, and was the intimate friend and supporter of Tecumseh, until the death of the latter at the battle of the Thames.

At the close of the war of 1812, Black Hawk returned to his village on Rock river, to find Keokuk still the friend of the Americans, and the recognized war chief of that portion of the Sac and Fox nation which had remained neutral. As stated elsewhere, a new treaty was concluded in September, 1815, in which, among other matters, the treaty of St. Louis was ratified. This treaty was not signed by Black Hawk, or any one representing his band, but was signed by chiefs of both the Sacs and Foxes, who were fully authorized to do so. This treaty was held at Portage des Sioux, and was a result of the war of 1812, with England. In May, 1816, another treaty was held at St. Louis, in which the St. Louis treaty of 1804 was recognized. This treaty was signed by Black Hawk and twenty other chiefs and braves. The same year Fort Armstrong was erected upon Rock Island, a proceeding very distasteful to the Indians. Of this Black Hawk says:

"We did not, however, object to their building the fort on the island, but we were very sorry, as this was the best island on the Mississippi, and had long been the resort of our young people during the summer. It was our garden, like the white people have near their big villages, which supplied us with strawberries, blackberries, plums, apples and nuts of various kinds; and its waters supplied us with pure fish, being situated in the rapids of the river. In my early life, I spent many happy days on this island. A good spirit had care of it, who lived in a cave in the rocks, immediately under the place where the fort now stands, and has often been seen by our people. He was white, with large wings like a swan's, but ten times larger. We were particular not to make much noise in that part of the island which he inhabited, for fear of disturbing him. But the noise of the fort has since driven him away, and no doubt a bad spirit has since taken his place."

The expedition which was sent up the river to erect a fort at or near Rock Island, consisted at first of the Eighth United States Infantry, and started from St. Louis in September, 1815, under the command Col. R. C. Nichols. They reached the mouth of the Des Moines, where they wintered. In April, 1816, Gen. Thomas A. Smith arrived and took command of the expedition. They reached Rock Island on the 10th of May, and, after a careful examination, the site for the fort was selected. The regiment being left under the command of Col. Lawrence, the work on the fort immediately commenced. It was named in honor of John Armstrong of New York, who had recently been Secretary of War.

After the establishment of the fort and garrison at Rock Island settlements began to be made at and near the mouth of Rock river, on the east side of the Mississippi. Keokuk, as the head chief of the Foxes, with his tribe, in accordance with the treaties they had made with the United States, left in 1828 and established themselves on Iowa river, but Black Hawk and his "British Band" of about 500 warriors remained in their village and persistently refused to leave. The settlers began to complain of frequent depredations at the hands of Black Hawk's people, and feared that the neighboring tribes of Kickapoos, Pottawattamies, and Winnebagoes, might be induced to join Black Hawk in a war of extermination. Finally, in the spring of 1831, Black Hawk warned the settlers to leave. These troubles culminated in the "Black Hawk War," and the final capture of the chief and some of his principal men, as related elsewhere. The Black Hawk War ended hostilities with the Indians at or near Rock Island. A garrison, however, was maintained there until 1836, when the troops were sent to Fort Snelling. The fort was left in charge of Lieut. John Beach, with a few men to take care of the property.

After his capture, Black Hawk and several of his principal men were taken to Jefferson Barracks, where they were kept until the spring of 1833. They were then sent to Washington, where they arrived on the 22d of April, and on the 26th were confined in Fortress Monroe. On the 4th of June, 1833, they were set at liberty by order of the government and permitted to return to their own country.

In the fall of 1837 Black Hawk, accompanied by Keokuk, Wapello, Poweshiek, and some forty of the principal chiefs and braves of the Sac and Fox nations, again visited Washington, in charge of Col. George Davenport, who by his influence with the Indians assisted the government in making another, large purchase of territory in Iowa. This tract adjoined the "Black Hawk Purchase," and embraced 1,250,000 acres.

After Black Hawk's release from captivity in 1833, he seemed unwilling to reside in any of the villages of the tribe. His band was broken up and dispersed, as stipulated in the treaty of peace, and he seemed to seek seclusion from his people. While the garrison remained at Rock Island, he usually lived near it, and often put up his wigwam close to the fort, where his vision could take in the beautiful country on the east bank of the Mississippi, which had been his home for more than half a century.

But the time came when he must go with his people to the new reservation on the banks of the Des Moines. He was then in the waning years of his life, and the other chiefs of the nation seemed disposed to pay him but little attention. His family consisted of his wife, two sons and one daughter. He established his lodge on the east bank of the Des Moines, about three miles below the site of the present town of Eldon. Gen. Street presented the family with a cow, which was a piece of property which exacted much solicitude and care at the hands of Madame Black Hawk. His lodge was near the trading post of Wharton McPherson; and James Jordan, who was also at that time connected with the post, had his cabin within a few rods of Black Hawk's lodge. This was in the summer of 1838, and the old chief who had defied the power of the United States and caused the expenditure of millions of treasure to subdue him, was nearing his departure for a final remove beyond the power of earthly governments. Near his lodge, on the bank of the river, stood a large elm tree, with its spreading branches overhanging the stream, and flowing from its roots was a crystal spring of pure water. Here during the sultry summer days of that year Black Hawk was wont to repose and dream over the years of his former greatness and the wrongs that his people had suffered. At last, on the 3d of October, 1838, death came to his relief, and, according to the Indian idea, his Spirit passed away to the happy hunting grounds.

The remains of Black Hawk were interred by his family and friends near his cabin on the prairie, a short distance above the old town of Iowaville. The body was placed on a board, or slab, set up in an inclining position, with the feet extending into the ground some fifteen inches and the head elevated above the surface some three feet or more. This was enclosed by placing slabs around it with the ends resting on the ground and meeting at the top, forming a kind of vault. The whole was then covered with dirt and neatly sodded. At the head of the grave was placed a flag-staff thirty feet high, from which floated the American flag until it was worn out by the wind. Interred with the body were a number of his prized and long-treasured relics, including a military suit presented by Jackson's cabinet; a sword presented by Jackson himself; a cane presented by Henry Clay, and another by a British officer; and three silver medals, one presented by Jackson, one by John Quincy Adams, and the other by citizens of Boston. Near the grave a large post was set in the ground, on which were inscribed in Indian characters, emblems commemorating many of his heroic deeds.

The grave and flag-staff were enclosed by a rude picket fence in circular form, ere the body remained until July, 1839, when it disappeared. On complaint being made by Black Hawk's family, the matter was investigated, and it was finally traced to one Dr. Turner, who then resided at a place called Lexington, in Van Buren county. The remains had been taken to Illinois, but at the earnest request of Black Hawk's relatives, Gov. Lucas interposed and had them sent to Burlington. The sons were informed that the remains were in Burlington and went to that place to obtain them. While there it was suggested to them that if taken away they would only be stolen again, and they concluded to leave them where they thought they might be more safely preserved. They were finally placed in a museum in that city, and years after, with a large collection of other valuable relics, were destroyed by the burning of the building. In the meantime the relatives of the renowned chief removed westward with the rest of the tribe, and were finally lost to all knowledge of the white man.

[History of Keokuk County, Iowa, 1880; submitted by cddd]


Chos-chun-ca or Big Wave

When, in 1834, Gen. Henry Dodge made a treaty with the Winnebagoes for the country occupied by them in Wisconsin, they were transferred to a strip of land extending west from the Mississippi, opposite Prairie du Chien, to the Des Moines river, being a tract forty miles in width. The chief of the Winnebagoes at that time was Chos-chun-ca, or Big Wave.

Soon after their removal to this reservation, they were visited by Willard Barrows, one of the pioneers of Davenport, who had an interview with Chos-chun-ca. He found him clothed in a buffalo overcoat, and wearing a high crowned hat. His nose was surmounted by a pair of green spectacles. Mr. Barrows held his interview with the chief just south of the lower boundary of the reservation. Chos-chun-ca was quite reticent as to the affairs of his people, and refused permission to Mr. Barrows to explore the Winnebago reservation, being impressed with the idea that the whites had sent him to seek out all the fine country, and that if their lands were found desirable, then the Indians would be compelled to remove again. Mr. Barrows, however, without the chief's permission, passed safely through their territory.

[History of Keokuk County, Iowa, 1880; submitted by cddd]


Indian "Prophet"

The "PROPHET," or Wah-pe-kee-suit, signifying "White Cloud,” was a brother of the celebrated Black Hawk, and the prime instigator of the war that bears the name of this chief. He was born on the Rock River, in Illinois, about the year 1780.

The blood of two races runs in his veins—the Winnebago and the Sac, or Sauk, tribes.All that can be learned of his early life is, that he was an unmitigated savage.A relentless foe to the whites, he pursued them with the most untiring zeal, forgetting to eat or sleep in his eager thirst for their blood. The bullet or the tomahawk was the only mercy he was known to show to those who fell into his hands.

Like his brother-prophets, of the Shawnees and the Seminoles, he laid claim to supernatural powers, and pretended to have revelations from the Great Spirit. He gained such complete ascendency over the mind of Black Hawk, as to make that credulous Chief believe that he would become the glorious instrument in the hands of the Great Spirit of relieving the whole country of their white-faced enemies, who were so fast encroaching upon their hunting-grounds. In the same manner was the shrewd Tecumseh imposed upon by the Shawnees' prophet.

The Prophet traveled the country through, from the Gulf to the Rocky Mountains, stirring up the various tribes to mutiny and massacre; and when the hour came for the stroke of war, his hand was the readiest among the savage hordes.

At the final treaty with the Sacs and Poxes, in 1833, the Prophet and Black Hawk were in disgrace, and the Americans would not treat with them. They were deposed, and KeoKuk was made Chief of this double tribe, with whom all the subsequent negotiations were conducted.

After the convention, the tribe removed west of the Mississippi; and the Prophet, after making a tour of the Union with his brethren, took up his residence in the same village with KeoKuk, on the Des Moines River, about seventy miles from its confluence with the Mississippi, where ho spent the rest of his days in peace.

He is described as having a large, broad face; short, blunt nose; large, full eyes; wide mouth, and thick lips, with a full head of hair—the whole man exhibiting a savage nature, and marking him as the very high priest of assassination and murder.

[Biographies of Two Hundred & Fifty Distinguished National Men, 1871, submitted by Cathy Danielson]


Ink-pa-du-tah

Ink-pa-du-tah; Spirit Lake Massacre; Expedition from Ft. Dodge; Death of Capt. Johnston and William Burkholder.

Ink-pa-du-tah, it is said, was the brother, and became the successor, of the chief who was murdered by Henry Lott. He is known to the whites chiefly in connection with the horrible outrages committed at Spirit and Okoboji Lakes in Northern Iowa, and at Springfield in Southern Minnesota. He, in connection with U-tan-ka-sa-pa (Black Buffalo), headed a band of about eighteen lodges of Sioux, who, in the spring of 1857, robbed the settlers and committed the most inhuman outrages, culminating in the massacres of the 8th and 9th of March of that year. During the year 1856 a dozen or more families had settled about the lakes, while along the valley of the Little Sioux river at Smithland, Cherokee, and Rock Rapids there were settlements,

Ink-pa-du-tah and his band commenced their depredations at Smithland, and passing up the Little Sioux made hostile demonstrations both at Cherokee and Rock Rapids, killing stock and carrying away whatever they saw proper to take, but committed no murders until they reached the infant settlement at the lakes. There, and at Springfield, a small settlement in Minnesota a few miles northeast, they killed forty-one, wounded three, and took with them as captives four women, Mrs. Howe, Mrs. Thatcher, Mrs. Marble, and Miss Gardner. Twelve persons were missing, some of whose remains were afterward found, having been killed while attempting to escape. Of the four women taken, captives, two were killed on their night, Mrs. Howe and Mrs. Thatcher. The other two, Mrs. Marble and Miss Gardner, were some months after, through the efforts of Gov. Madarie, of Minnesota, and the Indian agent at Laqua Parle, purchased from Ink-pa-du-tah by employing friendly Indians to affect the purchase. By this raid and massacre the settlement at the lakes was entirely swept away. All the houses were burned, and all the stock either killed or taken away. At Springfield the settlers were somewhat prepared to defend themselves, having heard of the slaughter at the lakes. Seven or eight persons, however, were killed at Springfield.

The winter preceding these massacres had been unusually severe, and snow had fallen to the depth of from one to two feet. In March all the ravines were filled with drifted snow, with a thick and heavy crust, so that travel in that region was almost impossible. For this reason those infant settlements were almost cut off from intercourse with the thickly inhabited parts of the country.

It was, therefore, sometime before the news of the massacres reached Fort Dodge, the nearest settlement. The messengers who conveyed the intelligence were Messrs. Bell and Williams, who lived on Little Sioux river. Messrs. Howe, Snyder and Parmenter, of Newton, who had attempted to relieve the inhabitants at the lakes with provisions, also upon arriving there found all the settlers murdered. They, too, hastened as rapidly as possible to Fort Dodge and reported. Messengers were at once sent to Webster City and Homer to request the citizens to turn out for the relief of the frontier, and they responded promptly. Those two places furnished forty men and Fort Dodge eighty. The force of 120 men was formed into three companies of forty men each, under Captains C. B. Richards, John F. Duncombe, and J. C. Johnston. The battalion was commanded by Major W. Williams. On the 25th of March the battalion started from Fort Dodge, the snow still covering the ground and all the ravines being so gorged with drifted snow that in places it was necessary to cut their way through snow-banks from ten to twenty feet deep. After marching thirty miles ten men had to be sent back, reducing the force to 110 men. In the meantime a force from Fort Ridgely was approaching from the north. The Indians, expecting these movements, had taken their flight across the Big Sioux river to join the Yanktons, in what is now Dakota. The troops, after almost incredible hardships and sufferings for eighteen days and nights, being without tents, failed to get sight of a single hostile Indian. They found and buried the bodies of twenty-nine persons. A. number were burned in the houses by the savages, and their remains were found in the ashes. The expedition lost two valuable citizens, Captain J. C. Johnston, of Webster City, and William Burkholder, of Fort Dodge, the latter being a brother of Mrs. Gov. C. C. Carpenter. They were frozen to death on their return from the lakes. Eighteen others were more or less frozen, and some did not recover for a year after. Several years after his death the remains of young Burkholder were found on the prairie, being recognized by the remains of his gun and clothing. When overcome by the cold he was separated from his companions, and his fate was for sometime unknown.

From this brief account of Ink-pa-du-tah, it will be conceded that there is no reason to cherish his memory with any degree of admiration. He was the leader of a band comprising even the worst element of the Sioux nation, the best of which is bad enough, even for savages. The germ of the band of which he was chief, was a family of murderers, known as Five Lodges, who, it was said, having murdered an aged chief, wandered away and formed a little tribe of their own, with whom rogues from all the other bands found refuge. At the time of these hostilities against the whites under Ink-pa-du-tah, they numbered probably over 150 lodges. They were constantly roving about in parties, stealing wherever they could from trappers and settlers. The subsequent career of Ink-pa-du-tah has been west of the borders of Iowa and Minnesota.

[History of Keokuk County, Iowa, 1880; submitted by cddd]


Keokuk

KEOKUK, or the "Running Fox," a powerful Chief of the Sac and Fox Indians, was born at the very commencement of the present century.

He early gave indications of his shrewdness and courage—the traits of Indian character most in esteem with his tribe; and while he was a mere youth, he was admitted to the more manly sports and dances, for which no mere papoose is esteemed fit.

On the breaking out of Black Hawk's war, he was a subordinate Chief under that renowned warrior, and showed himself a brave and careful soldier. He aided, both by his counsels and prowess in battle, to shorten that cruel and bloody struggle.He was among the earliest to acknowledge his error, and afterward became a friend of the white man, and did all he could to bring about a fair and honorable peace.

When Black Hawk and the Prophet were taken prisoners, General Harrison, who had experienced the duplicity and treachery of these malignant Chiefs in many ways, and had lost all confidence in their promises, desirous of negotiating terms of reconciliation with some competent person among the tribes of hostile Indians, at once deposed Black Hawk, and raised KeoKuk to his place; and it is but justice to this Chief to say, that he maintained the terms of the convention inviolate himself, and did what he could to enforce it among the warriors of his tribe.

The negotiation of that important treaty was a scene of great interest. KeoKuk was the principal speaker on the occasion, while the dethroned Black Hawk stood upon the outside of the circle, not allowed to speak or sign the treaty, with the Prophet and his principal aid, Nah-Pope, standing by his side, in scowling silence and painful submission.

After peace was made with the Indians, KeoKuk, together with Black Hawk, the Prophet, and some twenty others of the most powerful Chiefs among them, visited the principal cities of the Union.

On the return of KeoKuk to his native wilds, he, in company with his tribe, migrated to the west side of the Mississippi, and established a village on the Des Moines River, about seventy miles from its mouth. Here he held his court. He sustained his rank among his fallen braves with the same ceremony and grandeur as ever, but still under the restraint and power of his white foes.

"I found KeoKuk," says Catlin, who visited his village in 1835,"to be a Chief of fine and portly figure, with a good countenance, and great dignity and grace in his manners. He is a man of a great deal of pride, and makes truly a splendid appearance when mounted on his beautiful black warhorse." Catlin painted his portrait in this guise, as well as full length on foot. He was proud of the pictures, and excessively vain of his own appearance.

[Biographies of Two Hundred & Fifty Distinguished National Men, 1871, submitted by Cathy Danielson]

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KEOKUK, or the "Running Fox," a powerful Chief of the Sac and Fox Indians, was born at the very commencement of the present century.

He early gave indications of his shrewdness and courage—the traits of Indian character most in esteem with his tribe; and while he was a mere youth, he was admitted to the more manly sports and dances, for which no mere papoose is esteemed fit.

On the breaking out of Black Hawk's war, he was a subordinate Chief under that renowned warrior, and showed himself a brave and careful soldier. He aided, both by his counsels and prowess in battle, to shorten that cruel and bloody struggle.He was among the earliest to acknowledge his error, and afterward became a friend of the white man, and did all he could to bring about a fair and honorable peace.

When Black Hawk and the Prophet were taken prisoners, General Harrison, who had experienced the duplicity and treachery of these malignant Chiefs in many ways, and had lost all confidence in their promises, desirous of negotiating terms of reconciliation with some competent person among the tribes of hostile Indians, at once deposed Black Hawk, and raised KeoKuk to his place; and it is but justice to this Chief to say, that he maintained the terms of the convention inviolate himself, and did what he could to enforce it among the warriors of his tribe.

The negotiation of that important treaty was a scene of great interest. KeoKuk was the principal speaker on the occasion, while the dethroned Black Hawk stood upon the outside of the circle, not allowed to speak or sign the treaty, with the Prophet and his principal aid, Nah-Pope, standing by his side, in scowling silence and painful submission.

After peace was made with the Indians, KeoKuk, together with Black Hawk, the Prophet, and some twenty others of the most powerful Chiefs among them, visited the principal cities of the Union.

On the return of KeoKuk to his native wilds, he, in company with his tribe, migrated to the west side of the Mississippi, and established a village on the Des Moines River, about seventy miles from its mouth. Here he held his court. He sustained his rank among his fallen braves with the same ceremony and grandeur as ever, but still under the restraint and power of his white foes.

"I found KeoKuk," says Catlin, who visited his village in 1835,"to be a Chief of fine and portly figure, with a good countenance, and great dignity and grace in his manners. He is a man of a great deal of pride, and makes truly a splendid appearance when mounted on his beautiful black warhorse." Catlin painted his portrait in this guise, as well as full length on foot. He was proud of the pictures, and excessively vain of his own appearance.

[Biographies of Two Hundred & Fifty Distinguished National Men, 1871, submitted by Cathy Danielson]

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Keokuk (Watchful Fox) belonged to the Sac branch of the nation, and was born on Rock river, in 1780. He was an orator, but was also entitled to rank as a warrior, for he possessed courage and energy, but at the same time a cool judgment. He had an intelligent appreciation of the power and greatness of the United States, and saw the futility of Black Hawk's hope to contend successfully against the government. In his first battle, while young, he had killed a Sioux, and for this he was honored with a feast by his tribe.

At the beginning of the Black Hawk War an affair transpired which was dignified by the name of the "Battle of Stillman's Run," in which some three hundred volunteers under Maj. Stillman took prisoners, five of Black Hawk's men, who were approaching with a flag of truce. One of the prisoners was shot by Stillman's men. Black Hawk had also sent five other men to follow the bearers of the flag. The troops came upon these and killed two of them. The other three reached their camp and gave the alarm. Black Hawk's warriors then charged upon Stillman's advancing troops and completely routed them. This failure to respect the flag of truce so exasperated the Indians that it was with great difficulty that Keokuk could restrain his warriors from espousing the cause of Black Hawk. Stillman's defeat was followed by a war-dance, in which Keokuk took part. After the dance he called a council of war, and made a speech in which he admitted the justice of their complaints. The blood of their brethren slain by the white men, while bearing a flag of truce, called loudly for vengeance. Said he:

"I am your chief, and it is my duty to lead you to battle, if, after fully considering the matter, you are determined to go. But before you decide on taking this important step, it is wise to inquire into the chances of success. But if you do determine to go upon the war path, I will agree to lead you on one condition, viz.: that before we go we will kill all our old men and our wives and our children, to save them from a lingering death of starvation, and that every one of us determine to leave our homes on the other side of the Mississippi."

Keokuk so forcibly portrayed in other parts of this speech the great power of the United States, and of the hopeless prospect before them, that his warriors at once abandoned all thought of joining Black Hawk.

The name Keokuk signified "Watchful Fox. As we have seen, he eventually superseded Black Hawk, and was recognized by the United States as the principal chief of the Sac and Fox nation, which, indeed, had much to do in stinging the pride of the imperious Black Hawk. In person he was strong, graceful and commanding, with fine features and an intelligent countenance. He excelled in horsemanship, dancing, and all athletic exercises. He was courageous and skillful in war, but mild and politic in peace. He had a son, a fine featured, promising boy, who died at Keokuk's village on the Des Moines. Keokuk himself became somewhat dissipated during the later years of his life in Iowa. It was reported that after his removal with his people to the Indian Territory west of the Mississippi, he died of delirium tremens, Iowa has honored his memory in the name of one of her counties, and one of her principal cities.

[History of Keokuk County, Iowa, 1880; submitted by cddd]


Ma-has-kah or White Cloud

One of the most noted chiefs of the Iowas was Ma-has-kah (White Cloud), a descendent of Mau-haw-gaw. He led his warriors in eighteen battles against the Sioux on the north, and the Osages on the south, but never failed to achieve a victory. He made his home on the Des Moines river, about one hundred miles above the mouth, and must have been something of a Mormon, for it is said he had seven wives.

In 1824 he was one of a party of chiefs who visited Washington. He left his home on the Des Moines to go down the river on his way to join his party, and when near where the city of Keokuk is now located, he stopped to prepare and eat his venison. He had just commenced his meal when some one struck him on the back. Turning round, he was surprised to see one of his wives, Rant-che-wai-me (Female Flying Pigeon), standing with an uplifted tomahawk in her hand. She accosted him with, "Am I your wife ? Are you my husband ? If so, I will go with you to Maw-he-hum-ne-che (the American big house), and see and shake the hand of In-co-ho-nee", meaning the Great Father, as they called the President. Ma-has-kah answered: "Yes, you are my wife; I am your husband; I have been a long time from you; I am glad to see you; you are my pretty wife, and a brave man always loves to see a pretty woman." Ma-has-kah went on to "Washington accompanied by his "pretty wife", Rant-che-wai-mie, who received many presents, but saw many things of which she disapproved. When she returned, she called together the matrons and maidens of the tribe, and warned them against the vices and follies of their white sisters. This good Indian woman was killed by being thrown from her horse, some time after her return from Washington.

In 1834 Ma-has-kah was also killed about sixty miles from his home, on the Nodaway, by an enemy who took a cowardly advantage of him. At the time of his death he was fifty years of age. After his death all his surviving wives went into mourning and poverty, according to the custom of the tribe, except one named Mis-so-rah-tar-ra-haw (Female Deer that bounds over the prairie), who refused to the end of her life to be comforted, saying that her husband "was a great brave, and was killed by dogs", meaning low, vulgar fellows.

Soon after the death of Ma-has-kah, his son of the same name, at the age of twenty-four, became the chief of the Iowas. His mother was Rant-che-wai-me, whose tragic death is mentioned above. He also visited Washing ton in the winter of 1836-7, for the purpose of obtaining redress for injustice, which he claimed had been done to his people by the government, in failing to keep intruders from their lands, and in disregarding other stipulations of the treaty made with his father in 1825.

[History of Keokuk County, Iowa, 1880; submitted by cddd]


Mau-haw-gaw

The greater portion of the territory embraced within the limits of Iowa, was once occupied by a tribe, or nation of Indians, known in history as the Iowas (or Ioways), who for many years maintained an almost constant war-fare with the Sioux, a powerful rival who lived to the north of them. The Iowas were originally the Pau-hoo-chee tribe, and lived in the region of the lakes, to the northeast, but about the year 1700 they followed their chief, Mau-haw-gaw, to the banks of the Mississippi, and crossing over, settled on the west bank of Iowa river, near its mouth, and there established a village, They called the river on which they established their empire, Ne-o-ho-nee, or "Master of Rivers." For some years they prospered and multiplied, but the Sioux began to envy them the prosperity which they enjoyed, and with no good intentions came down to visit them. Sending to Mau-haw-gaw the pipe of peace, with an invitation to join them in a dog feast, they made great professions of friendship. The Iowa chief, having confidence in their protestations of good feeling, accepted the invitation. In the midst of the feast the perfidious Sioux suddenly attacked and killed the unsuspecting Mau-haw-gaw. This outrage was never forgiven by the Iowas.

[History of Keokuk County, Iowa, 1880; submitted by cddd]


Pash-e-pa-ho

Pash-e-pa-ho, called also the Stabbing Chief, at the time of the treaty of 1804, and until after the Black Hawk war, was head chief among the Sacs. He was also present in St. Louis at the making of that treaty, and was even then well advanced in years. It has been related that he laid a plan to attack Fort Madison, not long after its erection. His plan was to gain an entrance to the fort with concealed arms under their blankets, under a pretense of holding a council. A squaw, however, had secretly conveyed intelligence to the commandant of the garrison of the intended attack, so that the troops were in readiness for them. When Pash-e-pa-ho and his warriors advanced in a body toward the closed gate, it suddenly opened, revealing to the astonished savages a cannon in the passage-way, and the gunner standing with lighted torch in hand ready to fire. Pash-e-pa-ho deemed "discretion the better part of valor", and retreated.

Some time after the plot against Fort Madison, Pash-e-pa-ho made an attempt to obtain a lodgement in Fort Armstrong, though in quite a different way. Several of his braves had the year before, while out hunting, fell in with a party of their enemies, the Sioux, and had lifted several of their scalps.

The Sioux complained of this outrage to the Department at "Washington, and orders were issued demanding the surrender of the culprits. They were accordingly brought and retained as prisoners in Fort Armstrong, where they had comfortable quarters and plenty to eat during the winter. Having fared sumptuously for several months, without effort on their part, they were released on the payment of a small amount out of the annuities of their tribes, to the Sioux. The next fall Pash-e-pa-ho thought he might avoid the trouble of stocking his larder for the winter. So he voluntarily called on the commandant of Fort Armstrong, and informed him that while on a recent hunt he had unfortunately met a Sioux, and had yielded to the temptation to get his scalp. He confessed that he had done a very wrongful act, and wished to save the Great Father at "Washington the trouble of sending a letter ordering his arrest; therefore he would surrender himself as a prisoner. The commandant saw through his scheme to obtain comfortable quarters and good boarding for the winter, and so told him he was an honorable Indian, and that his voluntary offer to surrender himself was a sufficient guarantee that he would appear when sent for. That was the last that was heard of the matter. Pash-e-pa-ho was never sent for.

During the first quarter of the present century the Sacs and Foxes were frequently at war with the Iowas. The latter had one of their principal villages on the Des Moines river, near where Black Hawk died many years afterward. It was here that the last great battle was fought between these tribes. Pash-e-pa-ho was chief in command of the Sacs and Foxes. Black Hawk was also a prominent actor in this engagement, but was subject to his senior, Pash-e-pa-ho. Accounts conflict as to the date, but the evidences of the conflict were plainly visible as late as 1824. The Sacs and Foxes surprised the Iowas while the latter were engaged in running their horses on the prairie, and therefore unprepared to defend themselves. The result was that Pash-e-pa-ho achieved a decisive victory over the Iowas.

Pash-e-pa-ho was among the chiefs present at the making of the treaty of 1832, when the "Black Hawk Purchase" was made. He was very much given to intemperate habits whenever he could obtain liquor, and it is probable that, like Keokuk, he died a drunkard.

[History of Keokuk County, Iowa, 1880; submitted by cddd]


Poweshiek

Poweshiek was a chief of the same rank with Wapello, and near the same age. He also was one of the chiefs who visited Washington in 1837. When the greater portion of the Sac and Fox nation removed to the Des Moines river, he retained his village on the Iowa river, where he presided over what was known as the Musquawkie band of the Sacs and Foxes. In May, 1838, when Gen. Street organized a party to examine the new purchase made the fall before, with a view of selecting a site for the agency, the expedition was accompanied by about thirty braves, under the command of Poweshiek. At that time the Sacs and Foxes were at war with the Sioux, and after leaving their reservation these men were very fearful that they might be surprised and cut off by the Sioux. A small remnant of his band make their-home on Iowa river, in Tama county, at this time. He also remained the friend of the whites during the Black Hawk war, and the people of Iowa have honored his memory by giving his name to one of their counties.

[History of Keokuk County, Iowa, 1880; submitted by cddd]


Si-dom-i-na-do-tah

Si-dom-i-na-do-tah; Henry Lott; A Tragedy in Humboldt County.

When the whites began to make settlements on the upper Des Moines, the region about Fort Dodge and Spirit Lake was inhabited by Sioux Indians, made up principally of that division of the great Sioux or Dacotah nation known by the name of Sisiton Sioux. When, in 1848, the government surveys of the lands purchased north of the Raccoon Forks were in progress, Mr. Marsh, of Dubuque, set out with his party to run the correction line from a point on the Mississippi, near Dubuque, to the Missouri river. In this work he was not molested until he crossed the Des Moines, when on the west bank of the river, he was met by a party of Sioux, under the leadership of their chief, Si-dom-i-na-do-tah, who notified Mr. Marsh and his party that they should proceed no farther, as the country belonged to the Indians. The Sioux then left, and Mr. Marsh concluded to continue his work. He had not proceeded more than a mile when Si-dom-i-na-do-tah and his band returned and surrounded the party, robbing them of everything. They took their horses, destroyed their wagons and surveying instruments, destroyed the land-marks, and drove the surveying party back to the east side of the river. This, and other outrages committed on families who, in the fall of 1849, ventured to make claims on the upper Des Moines, led to the establishment of a military post at Fort Dodge in 1850.

In the winter of 1846-7 one Henry Lott, an adventurous border character, had, with his family, taken up his residence at the mouth of Boone river, in what is now Webster county, and within the range of Si-dom-i-na-do-tah's band. Lott had provided himself with some goods and a barrel of whisky, expecting to trade with the Indians, and obtain their furs and robes. In a short time he was waited upon by the chief and six of his braves and informed that he was an intruder and that he must leave within a certain time. The time having expired, and Lott still remaining, the Indians destroyed his property, shooting his stock and robbing his bee-hives. Lott and his step-son made their way to the nearest settlement, at Pea's Point, about 16 miles south, and reported that his family had been murdered by the Indians, as he doubtless thought they would be after he left. John Pea and half a dozen other white men, accompanied by some friendly Indians of another tribe, who happened to be in that vicinity, set out with Lott for the mouth of Boone river. When they arrived they found that the family had not been tomahawked, as he had reported. One little boy, however, aged about twelve years, had attempted to follow his father in his flight, by going down the Des Moines river on the ice. Being thinly clad, the little fellow, froze to death after traveling on the ice a distance of about twenty miles. The body of the child was subsequently found. The sequel shows that Lott was determined on revenge.

In November, 1853, Lott ventured about thirty miles north of Fort Dodge, where he pretended to make a claim, in what is now Humboldt county. He took with him several barrels of whisky and some goods, and he and his step-son built a cabin near what is now known as Lott's creek in that county. Si-dom-i-na-do-tah had his cabin on the creek about a mile west of Lott's. In January, 1854, Lott and his step-son went to the cabin of the old chief and told him that they had seen, on their way over, a drove of elk feeding on the bottom lands, and induced the old man to mount his pony, with gun in hand, to go in pursuit of the elk. Lott and his step-son followed, and when they had proceeded some distance they shot and killed Si-dom-i-na-do-tah. That same night they attacked and killed six of the chief's family, including his wife and two children, his aged mother, and two young children she had in charge, including with the chief, seven victim s in all. Two children, a boy of twelve, and a girl of ten years of age, escaped by hiding themselves. Some days after, the Indians reported the murders at Fort Dodge, thinking at first that the slaughter had been perpetrated by some of' their Indian enemies. Investigation soon revealed the fact that Lott and his step-son had committed the deed. Their cabin was found burned down, and a slight snow on the ground showed the track of their wagon in a circuitous route southward, avoiding Fort Dodge. Intelligence of them was received at various points where they had been trying to sell furs and other articles, and where the chief's pony was noticed to be in their possession. Having several days start, they made their way across the Missouri and took the plains for California, where, it was subsequently learned, Lott was killed in a quarrel. It is believed by many of the old settlers of Northern Iowa that this outrage of Henry Lott was the cause of that other tragedy, or rather series of tragedies, in the history of Northern Iowa, known as the "Spirit Lake Massacre."

[History of Keokuk County, Iowa, 1880; submitted by cddd]


Wapello

Wapello, or Waupellow, was one of the minor chiefs of the Sac and Fox Nation. He was born at Prairie du Chien, in 1787. At the time of the erection of Fort Armstrong (1816) he presided over one of the three principal villages in that vicinity. His village there was on the east side of the Mississippi, near the foot of Rock Island, and about three miles north of the famous Black Hawk village. In 1829 he removed his village to Muscatine Slough, and then to a place at or near where the town of Wapello, in Louisa county, is now located. Like Keokuk, he was in favor of abiding by the requirements of the treaty of 1804, and opposed the hostilities in which Black Hawk engaged against the whites. He was one of the chiefs that visited Washington in 1837, and his name appears to several treaties relinquishing lands to the United States. He appears to have been a warm personal friend of Gen. Jos. M. Street, of the Sac and Fox agency, and made a request that at his death his remains be interred along-side of those of Gen. Street, which request was complied with. He died near the Forks of Skunk river, March 15th, 1842, at the age of 55 years. His remains, with those of Gen. Street, repose near Agency City, in the county which honors his memory with its name. The two graves and the monuments have recently been repaired by parties connected with the Chicago, Burlington Quincy Railroad, whose line passes within a few rods of them.

[History of Keokuk County, Iowa, 1880; submitted by cddd]


Wish-e-co-ma-que or Hardfish

Quite prominent among the Sacs and Foxes, after their removal to Iowa, was a man known by the name of Hardfish, or Wish-e-co-ma-que, as it is in the Indian tongue. He was not a chief, but a brave who rose almost to the prominence of a chief. He adhered to Black Hawk in his hostility toward the whites, and when Black Hawk died, Hardfish became the leader of his band, composed mostly of those who had participated in the Black Hawk war. When the Sacs and Foxes occupied their reservation on the Des Moines river, Hardfish had his village where Eddyville is now located. It was quite as respectable in size as any of the other villages of the Sacs and Foxes. Hardfish's band was composed of people from the Sac branch of the Sac and Fox nation. One John Goodell was the interpreter for this band. The name of Hardfish was quite familiar to the frontier settlers of Southeastern Iowa.

[History of Keokuk County, Iowa, 1880; submitted by cddd]


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